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tammy.horton

Deep%20sea%20life%20of%20Tanzania_2016_reduced.pdf?bcsi_scan_2687365ababd2c82=0&bcsi_scan_filename=Deep%20sea%20life%20of%20Tanzania_2016_reduced

- Echinodermata - Asteroidea -

Zoroasteridae

Echinodermata (Phylum) > Asteroidea (Class) > Forcipulatida (Order) > Zoroasteridae

(Family)

The starfish above were both seen at 1380

m water depth at the Pweza-3 site. They

are members of the family Zoroasteridae,

which is in the same Order (Forcipulatida)

as some familiar shallow water species

such as the common starfish (Asterias

rubens).

The upper images both appear to be the

same species, possibly Bythiolophus sp. or

Zoroaster sp. (a genus known from offshore

Kenya). Interestingly, the two separate

individuals in the observations above

are exhibiting the same posture.

The image on the left (middle) shows a partially buried

specimen of what is most likely Zoroaster adami and further

evidence of burrowing activity by asteroids is seen

as prints left in the seabed (lower left). Observations of

burrowing by members of the Zoroasteridae at other

SERPENT sites suggest this is a typical behaviour in the

group.

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