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Kidadl Team

SEPTEMBER 14, 2021

Blue Sea Star: 15 Facts You Won't Believe!

Blue sea star facts are informative and fun to read.

In this article, we will learn about a beautiful creature called the blue seastar (Linckia laevigata). The common perception of animals is often limited to mammals and reptiles. But, under the oceans that cover most of our planet are creatures that are stranger than fiction. This marine invertebrate with five arms, yellow tube feet, and no other discernable features like a mouth or face make them a true sight to behold. This sea star is one of the rarer species of animals on the planet, which is truly blue in color. Additionally, there are blue sea stars which may be aqua purple or even orange. It may even be hard to tell if they are living creatures, considering their very slow rate of movement of only 3.2 in (8.1 cm) per minute. This marine creature from the Indo-Pacific is known for its ability to regenerate the arms in its body at a rapid pace. Another fascinating fact about the Linckia sea star is that they are not well studied. Part of the reason for this is that this species is yet to be reliably and sustainably bred in captivity. The Linckia sea star, despite its glory, is experiencing a decline in population caused by the sea-shell trade and tourism-related activities.

If you find yourself enjoying reading this article, make sure to check out green terror and Congo tetra.

Blue Sea Star Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a blue sea star?

The blue sea star (Linckia laevigata) is a species of starfish. Other closely related species (like the Linckia multifora) with different coloration should not be confused for this species.

What class of animal does a blue sea star belong to?

The Linckia sea star belongs to class Asteroidea, order Valvatida, and the family Ophidiasteridae. These starfish species are extremely different from other fish species like cichlids and sharks.

How many blue sea stars are there in the world?

The exact population of the blue sea star is not known. More research needs to be conducted in their habitats in Indo Pacific to calculate the total number of starfish.

Where does a blue sea star live?

The Linckia sea star can be found in the shallow waters of the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

What is a blue sea star's habitat?

The Linckia sea star range is defined by shallow waters of coral reef areas and seagrass beds. These features are common in the Indo Pacific, where this species is found.

Who do blue sea stars live with?

While this marine species is not well studied, it is reasonable to assume that they mostly live solitary lives.

How long does a blue sea star live?

When in their natural habitat, the blue Linckia starfish can live up to as long as 10 years. However, this number significantly decreases when these starfishes are kept in aquarium settings.

How do they reproduce?

The Linckia laevigata reportedly have the ability to reproduce asexually as well as sexually. However, asexual reproduction has not been documented and researched well enough yet. During sexual reproduction, sperms or eggs are discharged through the gonophores and dispersed into the water.

What is their conservation status?

The blue sea star (Linckia laevigata) is unlisted in the International Union for Conservation of Nature or IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Despite this, there are reports that suggest that the wild blue sea star population is declining. The primary reasons for this decline are the tourism industry and the sea-shell trade.

Blue Sea Star Fun Facts

What do blue sea stars look like?

The blue Linckia, as the name suggests, is most commonly bright blue in color. The starfish that are less than 2 in (5 cm) in width have a blue-green body with dark spots. They have five cylindrical arms with rounded tips at the end. Each of their cylindrical arms has one eye. Their mouths are located on the underside of their bodies. They also have dark yellow tube feet. The juvenile blue Linckia, on the other hand, has pale yellow tube feet. The blue Linckia coloration can range between purple, green and yellow. However, this species is mostly found in aqua or bright blue color. The blue color further intensifies as these starfish age.

The blue Linckia is not a fish found in the wild aquatic life.

How cute are they?

It takes an open mind to find cuteness in a creature that has a body best described as five blue arms with yellow tube feet loosely held together. It is undeniable, though, that their surreal appearance is beautiful to look at. However, the number of arms is less than octopus species like the mimic octopus.

How do they communicate?

Though the communication patterns of the Linckia sea star are not known, starfish, in general, are known to communicate through chemical signals.

How big is a blue sea star?

Blue sea stars can grow up to a length of about 11.8 in (30 cm), which is slightly smaller than the bigger specimens of the crown-of-thorn starfish species.

How fast can a blue sea star move?

The exact speed of the blue sea stars is not known, but the mean locomotion rate is believed to be around 3.2 in (8.1 cm) per minute. Starfish, however, are known to move at a speed of about 0.6 mph (1 kph).

How much does a blue sea star weigh?

The weight of the Linckia sea star is not known. More studies need to be conducted to know the exact weight.

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no unique names that are used to refer to the male and female blue sea stars.

What would you call a baby blue sea star?

Baby blue starfish can be referred to as starfish larva or juvenile based on the life stage it is at.

What do they eat?

The blue starfish diet is that of an omnivore and feeds on dead organisms, algae, sponges, and microbes found in abundance on coral reefs and rocks. During feeding, the sea stars sit on top of their food, and their stomachs are pushed out through their mouths in order to cover the food. Their food is digested externally. The sea star can predominantly be called a scavenger which lives by feeding on dead organisms.

Are they poisonous?

No, the Linckia sea star is not poisonous. In fact, various starfishes can be consumed by humans safely too.

Would they make a good pet?

The blue Linckia sea star can be kept as pets. This blue Linckia is said to be one of the preferred starfishes by reef enthusiasts. Their vibrant blue color makes them stand out in every marine aquarium. In the home aquarium setup, these sea stars should be kept in a well-lit and coral rubble substrate with plenty of hiding places. The Linckia sea star is mainly solitary in nature but can also be kept with other starfish in the same aquarium. When keeping this fish as a pet, it is very important to keep a strict check on the oxygen levels, pH, and salinity of the water as the sudden changes in these levels can have an adverse effect on your pet. As for their diet, they can be fed small pieces of clam meat and tablets.

Did you know...

The blue starfish have a water vascular system that works on water pressure and helps in creating a network of tube feet.

The Linckia sea star has regenerative capabilities.

Are blue sea stars edible? 

Even though starfish is consumed by humans in several parts of the world, it is not the smartest idea to consume starfish. They might contain toxins that would not be fine for human consumption.

How do blue sea stars move? 

The Linckia sea star uses their arms to move. Although, it must be noted that they move extremely slowly. They make use of their water-filled tubes, which stick out through their skins to hold on to different surfaces.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these crown of thorns starfish facts and anchovies facts for kids pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable realistic starfish coloring pages.

 

Image one by Sodacan.

Image two by Frédéric Ducarme.

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