Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Mutant Starfish

I noticed this starfish stuck onto the inside of the kelp forest tank at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Apart from the interesting way it seems to float in the water I also noticed that it seems to have 6 arms/legs instead of the normal 5. Also the extra arm/leg to the bottom right seems to have spikes on it.
If there are any biologists out there maybe you can explain the extra appendage. And as I've said before the Monterey Bay Aquarium is a truly great aquarium, you can easily spend a weekend there and still have more to see.
Canon 20D, 24-85mm 3.5-4.5, AV mode f5.6
[click photo to enlarge]

10 Comments:

Blogger Chantal said...

Beautiful photo, good composition.

4:20 AM  
Blogger A said...

In my "professional" opinion the spikes are probably tube feet, and the extra appendage is the result of regeneration after an injury.

5:43 AM  
Anonymous regzgz said...

What great capture, I have to agree that the extra limbs are from regeneration.

6:41 AM  
Blogger Sidney said...

Strange indeed! Maybe you discovered a new family of starfishes! :-)

7:00 AM  
Blogger Ahamed Iqbal said...

Thanks for the comments. I wonder why the extra leg has spikes on it. But it does look like regeneration from the shape of it.

8:26 AM  
Blogger jamie lang said...

whoa - that's super cool!

11:44 PM  
Blogger Mari said...

Interesting. If you find out for sure that would be great to know. "a's" assumption seems like a likely possibility.

5:48 PM  
Anonymous Alicia said...

Seastars are fascinating creatures. I was wondering if it was regeneration as the others said. Cool photo.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Ahamed Iqbal said...

Thanks for the comments.

I've gotten expert confirmation that it probably is from regeneration. So I guess a and regzgz were right.

8:33 PM  
Blogger A said...

score 1 for the marine biologist!

9:29 PM  

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