The asteroid body has the form of a flattened star with arms (rays) generally numbering 5 or a multiple of 5. It is rare to see six or other number of arms. The arms join a disc like body.
The upper surface of the arm has the spines and other Enchinoderm features. There is usually a red eye spot at the tip of each arm.
The under side of the sea star has a mouth in the middle of the disc and there is an open groove from the mouth to the tip of the arm. Two or four rows of tube feet are found in each groove.
Sea stars travel on the tube feet. The tube feet has suckers that reach ahead and attach to solid objects; thus pulling the sea star forward. The burrowing sea star lack suckers and only push the sea star forward.
Sea stars feeding varies with the species. Most feed by extending their stomachs thru their mouth to envelope their food.
Sea stars can regenerate arms. When an arm is damaged, it is shed at a point close to the central disc. (this is why the species you receive have arms of varying development). If the arm surface is cut slightly, it can usually heal over. In some species, the lost arm can generate a central disc; thus creating a new sea star.
WHITE DYED STARFISH
One White Dyed Starfish 1 3/8 to 2 inches... .04
The common starfish, common sea star or sugar starfish (Asterias rubens) is the most common and familiar starfish in the north-east Atlantic. Belonging to the family Asteriidae, it has five arms and usually grows to between 4 to 12 inches across, although larger specimens (up to 21 inches across) are known. The common starfish is usually orange or brownish in color, and sometimes violet; specimens found in deeper waters are pale. The common starfish is found on rocky and gravelly substrates (the surface or material on or from which an organism lives, grows, or obtains its nourishment) where it feeds on mollusks and other benthic invertebrates.
The common starfish is native to the northeastern Atlantic Ocean and its range extends from Norway and Sweden, through the North Sea, round the coasts of Britain, France, Spain and Portugal and southwards along the coasts of Africa to Senegal. It is largely absent from the Mediterranean Sea. It is also known from the western Atlantic where it occurs between Labrador and Florida and the Gulf of Mexico. It is capable of surviving in brackish water (a term used to describe water that is more saline than freshwater but less saline than true marine environments. Often these are transitional areas between fresh and marine waters. An estuary, which is the part of a river that meets the sea, this is the best known example of brackish water).
The common starfish feeds on a variety of benthic organisms. These include bivalve molluscs, polychaete worms, barnacles, gastropod molluscs, other echinoderms and carrion. When feeding on a mollusc such as a mussel, it attaches its tube feet to each shell valve and exerts force to separate them slightly. Even a gap of just 1 mm (0.04 in) is sufficient for the starfish to insert a fold of its stomach, secrete enzymes and start digesting the mollusc body. When the contents are sufficiently liquid, it brings its stomach back to its rightful position with the food inside. The common starfish has a well-developed sense of smell and can detect the odour of prey species such as the common mussel (Mytilus edulis) and crawl towards it. It can also detect the odour of the predatory common sunstar (Crossaster papposus), which eats other starfish, and take evasive action.
The common starfish is dioecious, which means that each individual is either male or female. In the spring, the females release their eggs into the sea. A moderate sized starfish is estimated to be able to produce 2.5 million eggs. The males shed their sperm and fertilization takes place in the water column. The larvae are planktonic and drift for about 87 days before settling on the seabed and undergoing metamorphosis into juveniles. Common starfish are believed to live for about seven to eight years. When well fed, the juveniles can increase their radius at the rate of slightly more than 10 mm (0.4 in) per month during the summer and autumn and slightly less than 5 millimeters (0.20 in) per month in the winter. An adult common starfish can survive starvation for several months although it loses weight in the process. One specimen shrank from a radius of 6 centimeters (2.4 in) to a radius of 3.8 centimeters (1.5 in) after starvation for five months.
The ciliate protozoan Orchitophrya stellarum is sometimes a parasite of the common starfish. It normally lives on the outer surface of the starfish feeding on sloughed-off epidermal tissue. It appears to become parasitic when the host starfish has ripe gonads and is a male. It enters the starfish through the gonopores, the orifices where gametes are released. There may be a pheromone that alerts it to the fact that the testes are ripe and causes it to change its behavour. As different species of starfish breed at different times of year, Orchitophrya stellarum may move from one species to another in accordance with their reproductive cycles. In the Atlantic Ocean, it may alternate between parasitize Asterias forbesi and Asterias rubens during the spring and summer and the winter host may be Leptasterias spp.. The ciliate has been found in the testes of all these species. When inside the gonad, it phagocytoses the sperm thus rendering the starfish infertile. Researchers have found a change in the sex ratios of affected populations with fewer males than females being present with the males being consistently smaller than the females.
Species: A. rubens
One Jungle Starfish 8 to 9 inches ........ $2.75
KNOBBY SEA STARS(starfish)
BROWN SEA STARS(starfish)
CROWN OF THORNS STARFISH(starfish)
MULTI LEG OR SUN STARFISH
WHITE KNOBBY STARFISH
White Common Starfish
DYED RED STARFISH
One Dyed Red Starfish 1 inch or less..... .04
DYED BLUE STARFISH
One Dyed Blue Starfish 1 inch or less..... .04
DYED TAN STARFISH
One Dyed Tan Starfish 1/2 inch or less..... OUT OF STOCK
One Dyed Tan Starfish 5/8 to 1 1/4 inches..... .03
One Dyed Tan Starfish 1 1/4 to 2 inches..... .04
One Dyed Tan Starfish 2 to 2 1/2 inches..... .17
One Dyed Tan Starfish approximately 2 5/8 to 3 1/2 inches..... .19