Dissecting a Starfish

When considering dissecting a starfish, you must understand that this creature is a sea animal with a proportional endoskeleton. It feeds on mollusks and moves with hundreds of extremely small tube feet. Now, prepare the necessary tools for dissecting the starfish. These include a probe, a scalpel, dissection tray, scissors and pins. You must wear goggles and protective clothing to cover yourself against debris.

Pin your starfish into the tray in such a way that its top view faces you. Use the scalpel for cutting off one ray’s tip. Create two parallel, long incisions between the tip and the central disk, with each incision being close to the ray’s edge. Peel off the top tissue layer and find the lateral canal (to which the tube feet connect) and ring canal (to which all the rays’ lateral canals attach) then label these portions.

Expose and label the digestive glands of the starfish. Find the stomach by eliminating tissue out of the central disk. After labeling the stomach, find the gonads. You cannot detect the starfish’s gender without using a telescope because the gonads of starfish males and females look alike. After dissecting the starfish and before cleaning up the work area, ask your instructor first if you have located all the required starfish parts by letting him see all your labels.

Starfish Facts on How They Protect Themselves

When a prey is being stalked by predators, the first reaction of the prey is always to flee the scene. It will only be during compromising situations wherein the prey would start to be in fight mode. Unfortunately, starfishes cannot just escape from predators because most of them are generally slow. So they use numerous other defense mechanisms to protect themselves. According to the starfish facts gathered by zoologists, certain species of starfishes have a chemical coating in their bodies More...

Locating a Starfish

If you want to find a starfish, go to a nearby rocky beach. Typically, starfish stick to underwater rocks near the seashore. This is the best area to locate these wonderful marine creatures. It is a good idea to look forward to low tide. It is at low tide that the sea reveals a lot of rocks, which have been underwater. In addition, it leaves behind rock pools where there is a vast variety of sea creatures. The best time More...

Central Disc of Starfish

Starfish have the capability of re-growing partial bodies or lost arms, after they experience an injury. They typically do this to either reproduce or heal wounds. If you cut a sea star into five sections, each containing a portion of its central disc and an original arm, five new sea stars will be born. For the most part, a sea star can never clone itself except when the targeted clone has a section of the central disc. As the name More...

Starfish Facts on Environmental Dangers and Threats

According to zoologists who study starfishes and their impact to the environment, these sea creatures have a very important role in the oceans. They may look like decorations in the ocean floor but they are actually considered as keystone species because they contribute in creating balance of species under the sea which can be done through predation. With the starfish facts that people already know, it will be a good start to know what these animals do so that people More...

Modern Uses

Based on starfish facts, these animals are definitely very useful in keeping the equilibrium and balance in the food chain under the sea. These animals have a very wide preference when it comes to their diet which is why they can help control the number of opportunist organisms in the oceans. But aside from their usefulness in the environment, there are also other uses of these starfishes by humans. A common use of starfishes today is in the seawater aquariums. More...

Starfish Facts on their Senses

Even if starfishes look very peculiar and different from the rest of the animals that you typically see, they still have typical body functions and processes that other animals commonly share. They also have senses such as seeing, touching, and smelling. These senses may be some starfish facts that you may not have heard before. In terms of vision, starfishes actually have vision sensors which are eyespots that are specially located at the far ends of the starfish’s arms. These More...

External Threats

The greatest threat to starfish is similar one which endangers most other seawater animals: human beings. Starfish needs clean and clear water as its habitat. When humans permit water pollutants to flow into the seas and oceans, these species can get extremely unhealthy and even die. In addition, there are several cultures that allow the eating of starfish. In case too many starfishes are brought away from any area, these beautiful seawater creatures will be deprived of the opportunity to More...

Other Cool Starfish Facts

There are various marine creatures, such as manta rays and sharks, which can prey on starfishes and penetrate their solid skin. There are species of birds that can feed on starfishes, which come too close to the water surface. The larger starfish species may sometimes feed on smaller marine species. The lifespan of a starfish can be up to thirty-five years if it is able to get away from its numerous predators. What makes the starfish very different from most More...

Starfish Facts

Starfish, also popularly recognized equally as sea stars, common name for 5 orders and about 1500 living species of marine invertebrate characterized by radially arranged arms having locomotory tube feet. Actually, starfish cannot be considered as fish in spite of the name provided to these sea animals. Some known starfish facts are that they belong to the group called echinoderms. They can be found in great numbers in the depths of the ocean and as well as in shallow waters. More...