Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Marine Life: Serpent Star (Ophiura)

The serpent star looks similar to a starfish. Found in the North-east Atlantic ocean from Norway to the Mediterranean, the Ophiura is a brittle star that lacks brilliant colors, allowing the serpent star to camouflage itself rather than hiding in crevices.

Ophiura photo courtesy of Hans Hillewaert.

The serpent star lives on muddy or sandy substrate, sometimes partially buried. The central disk of the Ophiura will grow to a maximum of about 3.5cm.

This image of Ophiura was captured using a microscope and a Jenoptik C14+ microscope camera.