General Description

Body pale yellow to white, with purple patches (adults often without purple). Five arms, tips pointed and usually curled upward. Up to 50 cm wide (arm tip to arm tip).

Biology

Northern Pacific Seastars are native to Japan, Korea and eastern Russia. They were first recorded in Australia from the Derwent Estuary, Tasmania in 1986. It is a voracious predator and scavenger, has a prolific reproduction capacity, and now numbers in the millions. This pest is sometimes confused with native species, but is distinguished by the arm tips and spines on the body.

Distribution

North-west Pacific. Tasmanian waters and Port Phillip Bay in Victoria.

Habitat

Reef and sand areas, near jetties.

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