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Phylum Echinodermata > Class Stellaroida > Subclass Ophiuroidea
Blue-lined brittle star
Macrophiothrix lineocaerulea
Family Ophiotrichidae
updated Oct 2016

Where seen? This elegantly marked long-armed brittle star is sometimes seen in rubbly areas near seagrasses on our Northern shores, especially at night. It was previously known as Ophiothrix lineocaerulea.

Features:
Disk diameter about 1cm, arms 10-20cm long. Central disk thick and somewhat pentagonal. Long blunt cylindrical spines along the length of the arms, held in a bristley manner so the arm resembles a bottle brush. A pair of dark parallel lines along the upperside of the arms. This pair of lines continues on the central disk. The arms have diffuse banding of blue and yellow.

Sometimes confused with the Very long armed brittle star (Macrophiothrix longipeda) which also has very long arms but lacks the blue lines and has flatter spines.

Status and threats: The Blue-lined brittle star is listed among the threatened animals of Singapore. Like other creatures of the intertidal zone, they are affected by human activities such as reclamation and pollution. Trampling by careless visitors also have an impact on local populations.

Pulau Sekudu, Aug 04

Pulau Sekudu, Jul 04

Releasing eggs?

Blue-lined brittle stars on Singapore shores

Photos of Blue-lined brittle stars for free download from wildsingapore flickr

Distribution in Singapore on this wildsingapore flickr map


Terumbu Pempang Tengah, May 11

Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on his blog.

Changi, May 13
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on flickr.
 

Links

References

  • Lane, David J.W. and Didier Vandenspiegel. 2003. A Guide to Sea Stars and Other Echinoderms of Singapore. Singapore Science Centre. 187pp.
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