We did KVI and Maury Island yesterday and I was shocked. At KVI, I saw no sunflower stars at all, and no ochre stars at either site. At Maury, the pilings were completely bare of starfish. DOZENS of decaying carcasses, mostly in advanced decomposition, lay scattered all over the sea floor. One or two sunflower stars showed signs of the disease. Again, no ochre stars at all. A very few mottle stars were showing signs of the disease, too. I think it struck me extremely hard at Maury because one is so used to the colorful palette of the pilings, and because of the white blotches everywhere marking the demise of the starfish.
I can't imagine what this is going to do to the ecosystem, but it also breaks my heart that our new divers won't be able to marvel at the amazing colors and forms of what used to be such abundant animals.
"Sometimes, when your world is going sideways, the second best thing to everything working out right, is knowing you are loved..." ljjames