Image Sue Daly - Asterina gibbosa cushion star. Image width ca 4 cm.
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Asterina gibbosa is not listed under any importance categories.
|Phylum||Echinodermata||Starfish, brittlestars, sea urchins & sea cucumbers|
|Class||Stelleroidea||Starfish, sea stars, cushion stars and brittlestars|
|Recorded Distribution in Britain and Ireland||Common on all British coasts but sparse in the north-east and not recorded from Lincolnshire around to Hampshire|
|Habitat information||Found under boulders and stones on the lower shore on sheltered and semi-exposed rocky coasts and also in rockpools. Extends into the sublittoral to depths of about 100 m.|
|Description||A small starfish (up to 5 cm) with 5 (rarely 4 or 6) very short, broad-based arms. Upper surface covered with groups of short stiff spines. Colour variable but usually brown, green or orange; mottled individuals are present in some populations. The predominant colour pattern varies from area to area and with habitat, specimens from lower shore situations generally being paler in colour.|
|Additional information||Asterina gibbosa is a protandrous hermaphrodite: small or young individuals are males but as they become older and increase in size they develop into females. Asterina gibbosa may be distinguished from the morphologically similar Asterina phylactica which has a consistent colour pattern with a brown central star typically overlying the general background colour. There are rarely spines on the mouth plates of Asterina phylactica.|
This review can be cited as follows:
Marie Skewes 2008. Asterina gibbosa. A cushion star. Marine Life Information Network: Biology and Sensitivity Key Information Sub-programme [on-line]. Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. [cited 19/06/2013]. Available from: <http://www.marlin.ac.uk/speciesinformation.php?speciesID=2659>