7.23.2007

Sally sees starfish by the seashore


I was at church today, and in the Reef where there are like, hundreds of gallons of fish tank, there were these three baby starfish on the glass. Look at your pinky finger nail, they were a little smaller than that. SO CUTE!
So, at supper tonight with friends the topic of starfish reproduction OF COURSE came up in conversation. Do starfish lay eggs? Poop a starfish out? Chop off their own limb and therefore creating another starfish (like, Adam and Eve style)?
Good ol' Wikipedia...they do the whole egg thing like other normal fish. Nothing fancy. Nothing exciting. Just eggs. (sigh)

As I was searching for pics of starfish, I came across this totally awesome picture too, thought you would enjoy it.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey Ange-- Let me help you out with this, I got my masters in Starfish-----

Starfish are capable of both sexual and asexual reproduction. Individual starfish are male or female. Fertilization takes place externally, both male and female releasing their gametes into the environment. Resulting fertilized embryos form part of the zooplankton.

Starfish are developmentally (embryologically) known as deuterostomes. Their embryo initially develops bilateral symmetry, indicating that starfish probably share a common ancestor with the chordates, which includes the fish. Later development takes a very different path however as the developing starfish settles out of the zooplankton and develops the characteristic radial symmetry. Some species reproduce cooperatively, using environmental signals to coordinate the timing of gamete release; in other species, one to one pairing is the norm.

Some species of starfish also reproduce asexually by fragmentation, often with part of an arm becoming detached and eventually developing into an independent individual starfish. This has led to some notoriety. Starfish can be pests to fishermen who make their living on the capture of clams and other mollusks at sea as starfish prey on these. The fishermen would presumably kill the starfish by chopping them up and disposing of them at sea, ultimately leading to their increased numbers until the issue was better understood. A starfish arm can only regenerate into a whole new organism if some of the central ring of the starfish is part of the chopped off arm.

The Reed's Adoption Journey said...

Thanks for doing the research Ange, it has been driving me crazy ever since we saw them today and you asked. Never know what you will learn from Ange. i love ya and i had fun today.

Anonymous said...

A MASTERS in Starfish?....no comment. eewww on the sea cucumber
-Mer