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Click on a link below to jump directly to a specific echinoderm category:

Brittle Stars
Sea Cucumbers
Sea Stars
Sea Urchins

Video of Sanctuary Invertebrates - This includes a variety of crustaceans, mollusks, echinoderms, and worms.

Brittle Star List

The following brittle stars are found within the coral cap region of the sanctuary (0-130 ft, 0-40m deep). Common names are listed, if known.

Brittle Stars
Common Name Scientific Name
  Amphiodia pulchella
  Amphioplus tumidus
  Asteroschema sp.
  Astrocyclus caecilia
Basket Star Astrophyton muricatum
  Asteroporpa annulata
  Gorgonocephalus sp.
  Ophiactis algicola
Five-armed Ophiactis Ophiactis quinqueradia
Savigny's Brittle Star Ophiactis savignyi
Blunt-spined/Spiny Brittle Star Ophiocoma echinata
Red Ophiocoma
Red ophiocoma (Ophiocoma wendtii)
Ophiocoma wendtii
  Ophiocomella ophiactoides
Banded-arm/Harlequin Brittle Star Ophioderma appressum
Serpent Star Ophioderma brevispinum

Ruby Brittle Star
ruby brittle star

breeding group of ruby brittle starts
(breeding group)

Ophioderma rubicundum
Scaly Brittle/Red Serpent Star Ophioderma squamosissimum
Elegant Brittle Star Ophiolepis elegans
  Ophiophragmus sp.
Reticulated Brittle Star Ophionereis reticulata
  Ophiostigma isacanthus
Angular Brittle Star Ophiothrix angulata
Suenson's/Sponge Brittle
Suenson's or Sponge Brittlestar (Ophiothrix suensonii)
Ophiothrix suensonii
  Ophiurochaeta littoralis

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Sea Cucumber List

The following sea cucumbers are found within the coral cap region of the sanctuary (0-130 ft, 0-40m deep). Common names are listed, if known.

Sea Cucumbers
Common Name Scientific Name

Five-toothed Sea Cucumber
Five-toothed Sea Cucumber (Actinopyga agassizii)

Five-toothed Sea Cucumber (Actinopyga agassizii)
(spawning posture)

Actinopyga agassizii

Beaded Sea Cucumber
Beaded Sea Cucumber (Euapta lappa)

Beaded Sea Cucumber (Euapta lappa)

Euapta lappa
  Holothuria lentiginosa

Chocolate Chip/Three-rowed Cucumber
Chocolate chip sea cucumber (Isostichopus badionotus)

three-rowed cucumber (Isostichopus badionotus)

Three-rowed Cucumber (Isostichopus badionotus)

Isostichopus (Stichopus) badionotus
Cucumber Thyone pseudofusus

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Sea Star List

The following sea stars are found within the coral cap region of the sanctuary (0-130 ft, 0-40m deep). Common names are listed, if known.

Sea Stars
Common Name Scientific Name
  Astropecten comptus
  Asterinopsis lymani
  Asterinopsis pilosis
  Coronaster briareus
  Goniaster tessellatus
Common Comet Star Linckia guildingii
  Linckia nodosa

Nail Sea Star
Nail Sea Star wedged in a crevice on the reef
Image: Steve & Brandi Miller

Mithrodia clavigera
  Sclerasterias contorta

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Sea Urchin List

The following sea urchins are found within the coral cap region of the sanctuary (0-130 ft, 0-40m deep). Common names are listed, if known.

Sea Urchins
Common Name Scientific Name

Purple-spined Sea Urchin
purple-spined sea urchin

Purple-spined Sea Urchins (Arbacia punctulata)

Arbacia punctulata
  Centrostephanus longispinus rubricingulus
  Coelopleurus floridanus

Long-spined Sea Urchin
Long-spined sea urchin (Diadema antillarum)
black spines

white longspine urchin
white spines

Long-spinged Sea Urching (Diadema antillarum)
black & white spines

Long-spined sea urchin with small tropical fish swimming between its spines
(habitat for small fish)

Diadema antillarum

Slate-pencil Urchin
slate-pencil urchin

Slate-pencil Urchin (Eucidaris tribuloides) wedged in a crevice on the reef
(wedged in a crevice)

Eucidaris tribuloides
  Genocidaris maculata
  Lytechinus euerces
Green/Variegated Sea Urchin Lytechinus variegatus
Red Heart Urchin Meoma ventricosa
  Paraster doederleini
Stained Collector Urchin Pseudoboletia maculata maculata
Red Sea urchin Stylocidaris affinis

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Download a List of Echinoderm Species (116kb pdf) found in the coral cap region of Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary.

weather report observations cool stuff get wet

Small, knobby corals in foreground; boulder of brain coral in background.  Long, fingery branches of purple sponge anchored in knobby corals and standing upright.
National Marine Sanctuary logo - a stylized whale tail above waves