Astropecten polycanthus (Sand Sifting Sea Star)

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Astropecten polycanthus (Sand Sifting Sea Star)

Post  thierry on Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:57 pm

Source liveaquaria.com

QUICK STATS
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Temperament: Peaceful
  • Reef Compatible: Yes
  • Water Conditions: 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.023-1.025
  • Max. Size:
  • Color Form: Tan
  • Diet: Carnivore, Omnivore
  • Origin: Fiji, Solomon Islands
  • Family: Astropectinidae
  • Insert Date: 26 September 2009


The Sand Sifting Sea Star, at first glance, seems to be drably colored like most bottom dwellers. But closer inspection reveals a striking beauty and serenity to the alternating bands of brown and beige that dress this invertebrate's thick, spine-covered arms. Like other starfish, Astropecten polycanthus efficiently consumes mass amounts of detritus and uneaten foods. This nocturnally active member of the Astropectinidae family can move large amounts of sand as it burrows into the substrate in its search for food.
This peaceful omnivore will effectively clean even the largest home aquarium of detritus and left over food. Like other starfish, the Sand Sifting Sea Star will also consume small invertebrates, including shrimp, urchins, mollusks, bivalves, or other small sea stars. As such, the Sand Sifting Sea Star should be actively fed a varied diet consisting of natural food sources, especially in well-established marine aquariums. Otherwise, this voracious feeder will quickly clean your aquarium of detritus and then burrow into your substrate, starve, and eventually begin to decay.

To foster its feeding habits, the Sand Sifting Sea Star should be kept in aquariums with large, deep sand bottoms of several inches in depth. Since it is slower moving than most fish, the Sand Sifting Sea Star should not be housed with natural predators, including Puffers.

Like other invertebrates, the Sand Sifting Sea Star is very intolerant of sudden changes in oxygen levels, salinity, and pH and cannot tolerate copper-based medications. To successfully acclimate new specimens to your aquarium, use the drip acclimation method and never expose the Sand Sifting Sea Star to air while handling.

Breeding in the home aquarium is extremely difficult with no distinguishing characteristics to help differentiate between males and females.


Last edited by thierry on Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:21 pm; edited 2 times in total
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September 26

Post  thierry on Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:58 pm

It's first introduction to the tank
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September 27

Post  thierry on Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:59 pm

Suprise in the morning :p
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September 30

Post  thierry on Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:59 pm

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October 1

Post  thierry on Thu Oct 01, 2009 10:00 pm

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October 5

Post  thierry on Mon Oct 05, 2009 5:07 pm


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November 2 2009

Post  thierry on Wed Nov 04, 2009 5:01 pm

The Sea star is growing fast


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November 16

Post  thierry on Tue Nov 17, 2009 10:55 am

Seastar after the addition of a Coral, 2 shrimps and a foxface


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Cleaning February 14

Post  thierry on Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:29 pm

Been a long time since he showed himself above the sand, but he did

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3-3-2010

Post  thierry on Thu Mar 04, 2010 4:49 pm

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The road to rebuilding Pt 1

Post  thierry on Thu Apr 22, 2010 11:31 pm

The sand shifting sea star seems to have disappeared. While cleaning the sand a bit yesterday couldn’t feel or see anything that looks like the sea star. No idea what happened, but hope to find him soon.
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The road to rebuilding Pt2

Post  thierry on Fri Apr 23, 2010 4:12 pm

The sand shifting sea star on the other hand is one I will replace if he turns out to be gone. Then I hope that this one lives longer. Also will put a new heart sea urchin in to support the sea star.
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Rebuilding Day 1

Post  thierry on Fri May 14, 2010 11:52 am

No trace of the sea star, going to close the topic Sad
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Re: Astropecten polycanthus (Sand Sifting Sea Star)

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