Rosy Feather Star – Antedon bifida
The Rosy Feather Star is a species in the class of the Crinoidea (Sea Lilies) and thus belongs to the phylum of the Echinodermata.
Antedon bifida has a small body with thin branched arms. The number of arms is between 10 and 30. The colouration of the Rosy Feather Star varies between red, yellow, orange, violet or other colours. However, it is always monochrome. In diameter it reaches a maximum size of 15cm.
Habitat and Distribution
The Rosy Feather Star lives on rocky ground in columns, holes and caves up to 450m depth whereby he prefer regions with current or water movement. When diving in the Canaries you can observe it very often. In addition, its distribution area extends in the eastern Atlantic from Shetland, via Great Britain, to Portugal. There are also sightings reported from Algeria, Tunisia, West Africa and Venezuela.
Antedon bifida feeds on plankton which it captures with its arms.
Between May and July they form their sex cells. When fertilization has taken place, the female protects the developing embryos with a net of mucus and their arms. It takes about five days for the eggs to hatch. After, they float freely through the sea until they settle on a solid surface and fix with a short stick. They feed similar to adult animals. After one to two years, they are already adult youngsters.