Rahul Sharma (Editor)

Ophionotus victoriae

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Covid-19
Kingdom  Animalia
Family  Ophiuridae
Phylum  Echinodermata
Order  Ophiurida
Class  Ophiuroidea
Genus  Ophionotus
Rank  Species
Similar  Sterechinus neumayeri, Adamussium, Odontaster validus, Labidiaster annulatus, Odontaster

26 dec 2010 ophionotus victoriae bioturbation


Ophionotus victoriae is a species of brittle star in the order Ophiurida. It has a circumpolar distribution around Antarctica.

Contents

Description

Ophionotus victoriae is a large brittle star. It has a wide disc 4 centimetres (1.6 in) in diameter and 5 arms that reach 9 centimetres (3.5 in) in length. The colour is variable, being white, grey, brown or bluish.

Distribution and habitat

Ophionotus victoriae is endemic to the seas around Antarctica where it is found at depths down to 1,266 metres (4,154 ft). It is sometimes abundant and may represent 60–90% numerically and 40–80% by mass of the total macrofauna of the area.

Biology

Like other Antarctic invertebrates, Ophionotus victoriae has a slow growth rate and can live up to 22 years. It is a predator and opportunistic generalist and feeds on a wide range of invertebrates, especially krill. It also scavenges, feeds on detritus and even juvenile brittle stars. It is itself preyed on by fish and also by the large brittle star, Ophiosparte gigas, from which it flees. The females spawn in the Antarctic summer and the larvae develop slowly, forming part of the zooplankton before settling on the seabed and becoming juvenile brittle stars.

References

Ophionotus victoriae Wikipedia


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