Flower Urchin (Toxopneustes pileolus)

Also known as Flower Sea Urchin and Flower Tip Urchin

Description

Also known as Flower Sea Urchin and Flower Tip Urchin.

Found singly or in groups in shallow bays and lagoons on sand and rubble areas often covered in detritus.
They feed on invertebrates, sponges and even dead fish.
Width - 15cm
Depth - 5-15m
Widespread Indo-Pacific

These beautiful sea urchins are extremely venomous and can be fatal, the sting comes from the petal like flowers.

Sea Urchins use tubed feet to get around, often in large impenetrable masses for protection.
Sometimes they hitch a lift on the back of crabs.
They have well developed jaws for grinding their prey.
Their anus is on top in most sea urchins, except the heart urchins where it is at the rear.
Predators of sea urchins are triggerfish and large wrasses, who nibble away at their spines before turning them over to eat the fleshy undersides.
Sea Urchins are highly venomous and can piece through a wet-suit.
Some are sensitive to light and have the ability to shoot venom loaded spines at a short distance.
To be avoided!!

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