Saturday, December 12, 2015

Blue Starfish: a piece of the sea and sky in my hand

Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB AM Band, 8-9 evening class, Monday to Friday

Blue starfish, Calatagan, Batangas

A piece of the sea and the sky in my hand,
      blue - the color of eternity and infinity,
the boundless prosperity of sea and land,
      and a lifetime of fleeting immortality. ~

Starfish is the more popular name of sea stars - relative of brittle stars, sand dollars and sea urchins. This rare specimen was collected on the coral reef of Calatagan, Batangas. It belongs to Phylum Echinodermata, the most advanced of all invertebrates. Its radial symmetry is perfect for its structure and design, typically equipped with five arms, although there are dimorphic forms of having four or six arms. 

The starfish has a remarkable ability of regeneration, and asexual reproduction. When cut in half through the center, each half regenerates into an independent individual. Sea stars are predators of shellfish and are considered pest of oysters, clams and mussels. The predatory technique is to pry the shellfish through persistent force alternately using the arms, until the victim opens up to the gaping mouth of the predator. Photo by Matthew Marlo R. Rotor. ~

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