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.

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...

Drying a Starfish

Starfish can be dried by first mixing equal portions baking soda and table salt. Apply a thin layer of this mixture to the inside bottom of a shallow, small cardboard box. Then put that box aside for later use. In a casserole dish, combine one part “for home use” bleach and three parts water together. You will be needing enough of this solution for submerging the starfish completely. Place the starfish in your bleach solution then let it soak for More...

Feeding a Starfish

Nowadays, marine scientists call starfish “sea stars”, since they are actually not fish, but echinoderms. There are more than two thousand species of sea stars. Most of them have five arms, but others are blessed with up to forty arms. The stomach and mouth of the starfish are located on its bottom. These animals usually push their stomachs from their bodies, wrapping them around the food for digestion. When learning how to feed a starfish, identify what type your starfish 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...

Researching about Starfish Facts

There will be no starfish facts that people know today if not for the researches and studies done by scientists, zoologists, and biologists. From the time that starfish species were first discovered and studied by humans until today, a wider range of information are already gathered pertaining to these creatures. Researching starfishes is not an easy thing to do since there are thousands of species that are still living. In order to understand the evolution of this creature, researchers would More...

Starfish Facts on Asexual Methods of Reproduction

Starfishes are animals that are known to be able to multiply through both the sexual and the asexual processes. Based on starfish facts, not all species of starfishes can asexually create an offspring. There are species that strictly multiply through the sexual methods. But the asexual reproduction of starfishes is definitely a very interesting topic especially to kids. The asexual process of preproduction by starfishes can be accomplished through two methods. These are autotomy and fission. Autotomy is the process More...

Fun Starfish Facts for Kids

Kids are always inquisitive especially if they see something that looks interesting. Starfishes always catch their attention because of their appearance and it will be fun if you give a few starfish facts to your kids if they ask. The first fact that you can give them is that starfishes are not really fish but they are echinoderms. They are more related to sea cucumbers even if they have a ‘fish’ in their name. You may be able to find More...

Handling Alive Starfish

In order to handle a life starfish properly, you need to gently pick it up and not bend or break its arms, which may be somewhat fragile and small on a number of species. Although starfishes are popular for their regeneration capabilities, you must always hold them very cautiously to minimize any possible damage. You have to wrap a moist towel around the starfish or put it in a handy marine environment (a container full of seawater), in case it More...

Structure of Body

Starfish is not really fish because fish is composed of backbones, fins and gills. Starfish is an echinoderm, which is an invertebrate that has a proportional radial body. Instead of scales, starfish species are mostly equipped with a leathery, rigid skin, which protects them against the attack of predators like birds and fishes. Calcium carbonate makes up the skin of all starfishes. Most of the starfish species are equipped with five arms, which extend out of a central point; nonetheless, More...