Leptasterias at junkyard

Fish & Invertebrate sightings and descriptions, hosted by resident NWDC ID expert Janna Nichols (nwscubamom).
User avatar
ljjames
I've Got Gills
Posts: 2619
Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 10:46 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby ljjames » Sun Oct 16, 2016 11:59 am

There are a number of young Spiny Pink Stars out there, and this guy really doesn't look anything like them in person. I highly recommend interested folks taking a swim out there and visiting them in person, as these photos and video bits don't do them justice. There are a few, and they are along the line and in the 40-50 range, both on the artificial habitat and on the sand next to habitat. Hard to miss. :)
----
"I survived the Brittandrea Dorikulla, where's my T-shirt!"

User avatar
nwscubamom
I've Got Gills
Posts: 2297
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 12:13 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby nwscubamom » Sun Oct 16, 2016 9:31 am

That is a Spiny Pink Star (Pisaster brevispinis) with 6 arms, rather than the actual Six-Rayed Star (Leptasterias hexactis). Number of arms alone is not an indicator of the species. The texture and the shape of the body/arms, as well as the arm length to central disk ratio are also factors to help ID the stars.
The Spiny Pink has much more triangular shaped arms (fat at the disk, tapering to the tips), while the Six-Rayed Star has more cylindrical shaped arms. (see Jan's photos above).

- Janna
Janna Nichols
Pacific NW REEF Critterwatchers
My underwater photo galleries
REEF Outreach Coordinator
Seen any cool critters lately?
><((((°>
-----------------------------

User avatar
lamont
I've Got Gills
Posts: 1207
Joined: Thu Jul 20, 2006 7:00 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby lamont » Mon Sep 05, 2016 7:22 pm

found another one at the junkyard on video review:

Image

full video here, it's at 2:03

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fskJSHd4GsI

User avatar
ljjames
I've Got Gills
Posts: 2619
Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 10:46 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby ljjames » Thu Feb 18, 2016 2:55 pm

Thank you both for the images and reports for mid sound. I see what you mean re: similarities to other stars. As we find more, get some tube feet for the folks who can do the barcoding and/or one of the specimens starts brooding we will report back :)
----
"I survived the Brittandrea Dorikulla, where's my T-shirt!"

User avatar
Jan K
I've Got Gills
Posts: 3629
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 5:02 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby Jan K » Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:16 am

More from Whidbey waters:
Image
Image

User avatar
Greg Jensen
Amphibian
Posts: 804
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:02 am

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby Greg Jensen » Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:00 am

I don't recall seeing Leptasterias of any kind this far down in the Sound, although I did record seeing one near Tahuya on Hood Canal a long, long time ago. Most refer to the colorful ones like Jan posted as L. aequalis, while the greenish-gray ones are L. hexactis. Both are very common on Skyline wall, with L. hexactis tending to be very shallow or intertidal. Here are a couple very large ones
Leptasterias 1.jpg
Leptasterias 2.jpg


here is a juvenile Pisaster brevispinus- same stout bases on the arms, same lines of ossicles down each arm as your specimen
Pisaster brevispinus juv.jpg

User avatar
ljjames
I've Got Gills
Posts: 2619
Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 10:46 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby ljjames » Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:24 pm

I sent the picture off to the sea star scientists that we've been working with and they all (independently and without any prompting - i just referred to it as something I hadn't seen at the site before) came back with the id of Leptasterias. Apparently there are some green ones in addition to the pink/white ones as Jan photographed in our waters (3 or so different Leptasterias). They asked for a couple tube feet to barcode it. In person and on the video the ray shapes are really different than all the evastarias and brevispinus that are in the area, flatter and broader nearing the disk, more triangular if you will.

Visual identification aside, IF the stars (it and the other one that is identical to it that was found at another Alki site) actually happen to be Leptasterias of some form (and I understand you may feel it to be a bit IF), do either of you have any historical data on them in the mid sound?
----
"I survived the Brittandrea Dorikulla, where's my T-shirt!"

User avatar
Jan K
I've Got Gills
Posts: 3629
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 5:02 pm

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby Jan K » Tue Feb 16, 2016 4:45 pm

I think I agree with Greg on the PIsaster brevispinus, I see juveniles which look like the photo at Langley, where the adults are showing up with odd numbers of arms ...
Image
Image

User avatar
Greg Jensen
Amphibian
Posts: 804
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:02 am

Re: Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby Greg Jensen » Tue Feb 16, 2016 3:18 pm

I'm not sure that is a Leptasterias- thinking it might just be a juvenile Pisaster brevispinus with an extra arm. This has an obvious giant pedicellaria (at about 7 o'clock on the disk) and I don't think either of our local Leptasterias have these- can't see them in any of my pics or find any mention in the literature. The color is also more like a Pisaster.

User avatar
ljjames
I've Got Gills
Posts: 2619
Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 10:46 pm

Leptasterias at junkyard

Postby ljjames » Sun Feb 14, 2016 5:32 pm

Hi all, quick question...

yesterday at junkyard we found a rather large Leptasterias. In 25 years of diving there I don't remember seeing on this large (actually i don't remember seeing any at all, possibly eaten by all the other stars prior to wasting syndrome).

I sent the picture to the scientist and they are now curious re: otherLeptasterias sightings and historical sightings at this site. This guy was easily 4" ray tip to ray tip which is quite large for this species. it was down in 50' near the Octopus in tube.
Attachments
Screen Shot 2016-02-14 at 1.58.38 PM.png
----
"I survived the Brittandrea Dorikulla, where's my T-shirt!"


Return to “Critter Watchers - PNW Marine Life”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests