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Phylum Echinodermata > Class Stelleroida > Subclass Asteroidea
Crown sea star
Aquilonastra coronata

Family Asterinidae
updated Jul 2020
Where seen? This little sea star is sometimes seen, usually under stones at the mid-water line, or on coral rubble on our Northern shores. Sometimes it may be seen wandering among seaweeds far from the midwater line, especially at night. In some locations at some times of the year, they can be found in large numbers, but usually well spaced apart. According to Marsh and Fromont, it is found under boulders on mud and silty sand in Australia. It was previously known as Asterina coronata.

Features: Diameter with arms 3-5cm. A plump sea star (not flat). Usually 5 arms, short fat semi-cylindrical with rounded tips. Upperside has tiny holes through which short stubby transparent finger-like structures (papulae) emerge. Colours plain or mottled beige, brown or grey. Sometimes, bright orange ones are seen! Underside pale without markings. Tube feet slender tipped with suckers. It can stick its 'stomach' out of its mouth. Sometimes, individuals are seen 'carrying' bits of debris.

Tiny brittle stars and tiny snails are sometimes seen on the underside.

Changi, Aug 11


Stubby papulae on the upperside.

Pulau Sekudu, Jul 06

Chek Jawa, Jul 05

Stubby papulae on the upperside.

Crown sea stars on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr

Other sightings on Singapore shores

Tuas, Jun 15
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on facebook.

Pulau Ubin OBS, Jan 16
Photo shared by Marcus Ng on facebook.

Beting Bronok, Jul 23
Photo shared by Kelvin Yong on facebook.

East Coast Park, Feb 16
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on his blog.

East Coast Park, Marina Bay, Oct 15
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on flickr.

Pulau Hantu, May 19
Photo shared by Jianlin Liu on facebook.

  • Loisette M. Marsh and Jane Fromont. Field Guide to Shallow Water Seastars of Australia. 2020. Western Australian Museum. 543pp.
  • Lane, David J.W. and Didier Vandenspiegel. 2003. A Guide to Sea Stars and Other Echinoderms of Singapore. Singapore Science Centre. 187pp.
  • Didier VandenSpiegel et al. 1998. The Asteroid fauna (Echinodermata) of Singapore with a distribution table and illustrated identification to the species. The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 1998 46(2): 431-470.
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