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The blue star

Linckia laevigata

Can be purple or orange

Their tube feet can smell which means they have a hundred noses and they are probably the only animal that can run on its nose.

More impressive than that is how they eat. They are opportunistic feeders, feeding on dead animals and other scraps that have fallen to the sea floor and they don’t collect their food with hands or feet, they send their stomachs out to get it. As such they can squeeze their stomach in between small gaps or engulf things that would be too big to fit in their mouths.

The blue star is toxic so it is one of the few sea stars on the Great Barrier Reef you will see during the day. One of its predators however is the triton (trumpeter shell) which is a big beautiful shell that is often collected and this may explain why some reefs (Mackay reef) have more blue stars than other reefs.

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