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ochre sea star

Pisaster ochraceous

Description:

A fairly large five-pointed sea star (starfish) that ranges from brown to deep purple, with a lighter-colored network of ridges all over.

Habitat:

Intertidal zone, Pacific beach of the southern Oregon coast.

Notes:

This species of starfish has been hard-hit by a "sea star wasting disease" (see http://www.eeb.ucsc.edu/pacificrockyinte...) currently attributed to densovirus. It cropped up in Washington two years ago, and I was curious about whether it was affecting the starfish in southern Oregon (northern Oregon coasts have reported it). The first pictured here seemed not to have the tips of two of its legs, but they may have been just hidden. The others seemed OK.

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Port Orford, Oregon, USA

Lat: 42.74, Long: -124.50

Spotted on Jun 6, 2015
Submitted on Jul 2, 2015

Reference

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Short Spined Pisaster Pisaster Ochraceus (Sea star!) Purple Star Ochre sea star

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