Giant Spined Star 7688319668 O
30Identifcation number on The Map®

Giant Spined Star

Pisaster giganteus

Giant Spined StarHerb Gruenhagen


  • Large white spines, uniformly spaced with swollen tips, surrounded by blue or purple rings, with a body color that is light brown or blue
  • Diameter – up to 22 inches


  • Vancouver Island, British Columbia to Isla Cedros, Baja California


  • Lives on rocky, as well as sand bottoms and pier pilings, from very low intertidal to about 300 feetĀ lives


  • Snails, chitons, vermetid gastropods, barnacles, limpets, and bivalves, such as the California Mussel

Interesting Facts

  • Has unique construction of their endoskeleton, composed of large numbers of calcium carbonate crystals imbedded in the tissues
  • Collecting prohibited except for research purposes
  • Eats by extending its stomach, which fits into tiny gaps such as at the hinge of a mussel shell (common behavior for allĀ sea stars)


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