A brittlestar (Ophiopsila aranea)
|Researched by||Jessica Heard||Refereed by||Admin|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||-|
Recorded distribution in Britain and IrelandOphiopsila aranea is a nationally rare but locally abundant species which can be found in the Plymouth area, for example, in crevices on the Mewstone Ledges.
HabitatOphiopsila aranea are found on hard substratum, usually in crevices at depths of 25 to 185 m.
- The disc has no scales
- Radial shields thin and linear.
- The arms are proportionally long in relation to the disc.
- Six to eight spines along each side of each arm.
Additional informationBoth the disc and arms of very fragile and can be easily dislocated. Ophiopsila aranea are commonly found in crevices with the long arms protruding out into water.
Ophiopsila aranea may be easily confused with the similar looking Ophiopsila annulosa, which has 11-12 spines on each side of each arm.
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MBA (Marine Biological Association), 1957. Plymouth Marine Fauna. Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom.
Mortensen, T.H., 1927. Handbook of the echinoderms of the British Isles. London: Humphrey Milford, Oxford University Press.
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Isle of Wight Local Records Centre, 2017. IOW Natural History & Archaeological Society Marine Invertebrate Records 1853- 2011. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/d9amhg accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-09-27.
NBN (National Biodiversity Network) Atlas. Available from: https://www.nbnatlas.org.
OBIS (Ocean Biodiversity Information System), 2023. Global map of species distribution using gridded data. Available from: Ocean Biogeographic Information System. www.iobis.org. Accessed: 2023-11-29
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Last Updated: 07/06/2007