Orange feather star

Orange feather star
Image: Nick Hobgood
Community type

Benthic reefs organisms

Habitat type

Rocky reefs, kelp beds and inter-tidal zone

Orange feather stars have a central mouth surrounded by up to 40 feathery arms. Along the strands of these arms are a series of small feet, which the feather star can move by pumping water inside them. These feet have a sticky mucus coating, allowing them to catch passing food particles. Food is then moved along small grooves down each arm to the mouth. While feather stars look like they are firmly attached they can move about. On the underside of the central body feather stars have small grasping legs which they use to hold themselves to the reef. They can also move larger distances by swimming through the water column using their feathery arms.

Much of the text within the species area of our website was written by Veronica Thorpe, as part of the Derwent River Wildlife Guide (2000).

The DEP has developed a variety of classroom and outdoor activities focused around the key estuary habitats of tidal wetlands, salt marshes and rocky reefs. These include classroom materials, online resources, interpretive walks, games and sensory experiences.