Micro Starfish ID help?

Discussion in 'Invertebrates' started by EricaLyons, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. EricaLyons

    EricaLyons

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    Hi, my name is Erica, and I'm new to this forum. I joined because I would like your help in identifying my new micro starfish.
    First off, I checked World Wild Life . org and US Fish and Wildlife's Environmental Conservation Online System and there aren't any starfish on the list of endangered species. So, These little fellows were shipped to me from off of the coast of Cape Canaveral, Florida. I asked the vendor for details but all he could say is they stay this size (can fit on a pinky nail) and reproduce readily in aquariums. He said they eat detritus but since this tank isn't normally fed fish flakes or any meat of any sort, it'd be helpful to know exactly what they eat. Do you know what species they are?

    Pictures:
    http://gallery.nanfa.org/d/48174-3/003_004.JPG
    http://gallery.nanfa.org/d/48180-3/starfish+zoom+in+1.jpg

    http://gallery.nanfa.org/d/48175-3/004_003.JPG
    http://gallery.nanfa.org/d/48181-3/starfish+zoom+in+2.jpg
     
    EricaLyons, Jul 6, 2013
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  2. EricaLyons

    2XAl Salt Addict VIP Member

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    The pictures are small on my phone but kind of look like micro brittles.
     
    2XAl, Jul 6, 2013
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  3. EricaLyons

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    Yup. They're micro brittles. Good guys.
     
    ErinCahir, Jul 6, 2013
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  4. EricaLyons

    EricaLyons

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    I've been puzzling this over on the forum Micro Starfish ID Help? - FW Native Invertebrates - NANFA Forum and I think I've got it narrowed down to two species. Ophiactis savignyi and
    Ophiocomella ophiactoides. I'm excluding the other <3 inch Floridian brittle star, Ophiactis savignyi because all the pictures I see of it has it with six arms, and most of mine have five. But I'm hesitant to definitively say it's Ophiocomella ophiactoides without seeing a single picture of one.

    edit: I found a picture of Ophiocomella ophiactoides. http://users.skynet.be/fa311324/article/star/Ophiocomella ophiactoides.jpg The ridge length on the arms is the same as mine. The stripes on the arms is the same as mine. I don't have any pictures from underneath so I don't know if those match, but so far this seems like the closest estimate for an ID.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2013
    EricaLyons, Jul 6, 2013
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  5. EricaLyons

    Salty B

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    Nice thread! You know....I never put much thought into micro brittles untill now. I have pics and a short vid of mine broadcast spawning. I never counted their legs untill now....they have 6!
    Also I want to mention...they tend to lose a leg or two every now and again. So a little time and patients may be needed before a positive ID can be determined through pics. But JMO...you got nothing to worry about.
     
    Salty B, Jul 6, 2013
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