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Fire Urchin

Asthenosoma varium

Description:

Fire urchins (a.k.a. Varium Sea Urchin) have very short but very potently poisonous spines. And yet, it is not uncommon to find commensal shrimp (especially the Coleman shrimp) and/or crab upon them. They vary in color (but in the Davao Gulf, they are mostly red) and grow to a diameter of about 25cm. They feed on invertebrates, sponges and even dead fish.

Habitat:

Found singly or in groups on sand and rubble areas in open waters, shallow or deep. The deepest I've spotted a fire urchin was at around 35m. Widespread in the Indo-Pacific region.

Notes:

I photographed this particular urchin during a day dive at a depth of less than 8m, near the shore.

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Blogie
Spotted by
Blogie

Davao Del Norte, Philippines

Spotted on Nov 27, 2011
Submitted on Dec 7, 2011

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