Echinoderms on Scubapixel

Echinoderms are a strange breed of animals. Their bodies show a five-sided symmetry, and they rely on a unique system of tube feet and fluid-filled canals for locomotion. Check out the images!

Posted on Jan 10, 2012

The phylum Echinodermata contains about 7.000 species, all of which are found in marine habitats - none live in fresh water or on land.

The body of the echinoderms is not bilateral like that in humans and other mammals, but is separated into five identical radial segments.

If yook closely you will see that this pattern is quite obvious in most species - especially in starfish and urchins.


As you can see, the echinoderms are surprisingly colourful and show many interesting patterns, structures and textures.

» Click here to check out my Stars of the Ocean story

The echinoderms are mostly bottom-dwellers, and display many interesting habits and traits. Did you for instance know that starfish turn their stomach inside-out when they feed?

The Crown of Thorns starfish feeds on hard coral and is a dreaded scruge many places in the tropics.

Echinoderms exhibit a variety of feeding habits, inluding filter feeding, scavenging and predation. They have no brain or heart, but some species have "eyes" on the tip of each arm.

» Read more about echinoderms on Wikipedia

Many species show remarkable powers of regeneration - to such an extent that scientists are having trouble telling how old they are!

Asterias rubens is the most common starfish species in the northern Atlantic.

The echinoderms are divided into five classes (click to browse images): Starfish, Sea urchins, Crinoids, Sea cucumbers and Brittle stars.

The ScubaPixel database contains almost 120 echinoderm images from around the world, with emphasis on northern Atlantic species.

» Click here to browse images of echinoderms

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