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Spotted this at a depth of about 10m during a night dive. The fine spikes are more like hairs -- I don't think they can prick at all, but I'm not sure whether or not they can prick (I didn't want to find out!).
DonnaPomeroy - The online resources don't seem to be very helpful when it comes to the genus Leptodiadema...
I wonder if there are other species in the genus. I knew it wasn't L. purpureum, since that's endemic to Hawaii. They say the spines have very painful toxin in them, so I agree with you... Don't touch!
Gracias, harsuame!Thanks for the suggestion, DonnaPomeroy! It does look similar, but the pictures of L. purpureum I've found on the net show spines that are evenly colored. The ones here are kind of banded, aren't they?
That's very beautiful. It looks very similar to the Fine-spined Urchin, found in Hawaii (Leptodiadema purpureum). The skeleton certainly indicates it is an Echinoderm of some sort.
Lat: 7.09, Long: 125.66
Spotted on Mar 14, 2012 Submitted on Mar 15, 2012