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Slender armed starfish

Luidia clathrata

Description:

Luidia clathrata is a tropical species of starfish in the family Luidiidae. It is variously known as the slender armed starfish, the gray sea star or the lined sea star. The upper surface of the disc and arms is clad in longitudinal rows of calcified plates called ossicles. On the underside are two rows of tube feet with its mouth in the center (pics 3 and 4).

Habitat:

Spotted on the beach at Alabama Point East - Gulf State Park. Distribution: western Atlantic Ocean, from Virginia south to Brazil, the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. Prefers sandy or muddy seabeds to 40 meters.

Notes:

Luidia clathrata will often loose limbs due to predation, but have the ability to regenerate the limb. It is both a predator and a forager. It selectively feeds on the "coot clam", Mulinia lateralis, when it is abundant, using chemoreceptors to help it find its prey. The coot clam is the preferred food. The diet includes both gastropod and bivalve molluscs, foraminiferans, nematodes, ostracods, small crustaceans and detritus.

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Orange Beach, Alabama, USA

Lat: 30.27, Long: -87.55

Spotted on Jan 24, 2019
Submitted on Feb 11, 2019

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