Asterina Starfish Care Guide & Species Profile

The Asterina Starfish is actually certainly not a typical tropical fish. Many folks are going to determine this water animal as a bloodsucker or even parasite, while others find it as a safe as well as desirable enhancement to any sort of residence vat.

These tiny superstars immediately show up on items of stone or even coral reef in your storage tank, as well as perhaps gotten there on the act along with whatever designs you very most just recently acquired.

While Asterina Starfish are actually desirable in the eyes of lots of aquarium tank proprietors, there is actually a hazard of all of them taking advantage of coral reef, as well as they are going to be actually tough to discover as they typically just arise coming from concealing in the evening.

This post includes all the info you require approximately Asterina Starfish as well as are going to aid you make a decision whether to leave all of them in your storage tank or even bring in an initiative to eliminate all of them totally.

Asterina Starfish Facts & Overview

asterina starfish

Care Level:Easy
Color:Red, yellow, gray, or even white colored
Size:0.2 – 0.8 ins
Diet:They eat bacteria or even end up being non-selective omnivorous if health food is actually doing not have
Family:Echinoderm – Asteroidea
Minimum Tank Size:The much larger the storage tank, the additional they recreate
Tank Setup:Saltwater along with an oolitic aragonite substratum
Compatibility:All sea fish as well as invertebrates

Asterina Starfish are actually sea invertebrates. There are actually 15 recognized species of Asterina Starfish worldwide. They are actually likewise referred to as “Bat Stars” due to their knitted upper arms.

While lots of Asterina Starfish dwell in superficial water (3 – 5 gauges deep-seated), some participants of the species may be discovered at approximately 150 gauges listed below the area.

This water animal likes a rugged substratum, containing stones, rocks, and/or sand. They create their means right into residence fish tanks when folks accumulate online stones coming from coral reefs as well as market all of them to dog shops. The Asterina Starfish is actually typically described as a “hitchhiker”, as it typically winds up much coming from residence after “catching a ride” on a stone or even part of coral reef cleared away coming from its own all-natural habitation.

Asterina Starfish conform effectively to mostly all storage tank disorders, consisting of temps as reduced as 45F (8C). They don’t require any sort of exclusive meals, thus if you make a decision to maintain some as dogs, understand that it will certainly call for just about no care – with the exception of being sure they don’t increase relevant where they manage your whole entire aquarium tank!

Asterina Starfish are actually certainly not pricey. They price regarding $2 bucks each if you purchase a team of 10. After presenting all of them to your storage tank, they are going to perhaps instantly start to recreate, supplying a wealth of new meals for any sort of buffoon shrimp you have.

Typical Behavior

Asterina Starfish are actually very most energetic in the evening, or even when the lightings get out in the aquarium tank as well as space. Unlike your fish that dive around the storage tank exhibiting their stunning forms as well as different colors, Asterina Starfish primarily keep near their eating regions.

It may be exciting to view an Asterina Starfish consume algae on the glass wall structures of your storage tank. They grip the glass along with their suction-cupped lower legs and afterwards stretch their bellies away from a core dental caries under of their physical bodies. Asterina Starfish possess semitransparent bellies on the bottom of their thick skins. This animal’s soft belly typically looks salmon-colored when stretched.


The fundamental physique of Asterina Starfish is actually a government, along with approximately 5 quick, pivoted hinted upper arms prolonging in an outward direction coming from the physical body. Most Asterina Starfish are actually unbalanced, as a result of their approach of recreation, which entails losing several lower legs. While some Asterina Starfish possess all 5 lower legs, others seem like little bit of balls of cells without any lower legs in any way, or even lower legs of contrasting sizes.

Some possess complete collections of lower legs cheek by jowl of the physical body as well as no lower legs in any way on the various other. It may be pointed out that no person Asterina Starfish resembles every other, because they are actually continuously associated with the show of splitting as well as regrowth.

Short vertebraes edge the bottom of the Asterina Starfish’s upper arms, in teams of 2 – 6. The vertebraes typically show up in sets as well as manage completely to the pointers of the upper arms. There are actually likewise 3-4 vertebraes on each of the oral cavity slant platters. There are actually hardly ever any sort of vertebraes on the within the oral cavity.

The Asterina Starfish may be reddish, yellow, gray, or even white colored, along with a level physical body. They never ever enlarge than 2 centimeters, which is actually lower than an in, as well as, consequently, are actually occasionally tough to discover in a fish tank full of vegetations.

Habitat as well as Tank Conditions

Asterina Starfish are actually deep sea occupants, as well as are going to certainly not make it through in a freshwater storage tank. So just viewers that have deep sea storage tanks require to become worried regarding the achievable appearance of this particular baby parasite.

If you perform make a decision to obtain Asterina Starfish or even maintain the ones you immediately find in the storage tank, it is vital to ensure they possess adequate meals to consume, as well as a substratum that the majority of carefully resembles their natural environment.

The ideal substratum for Asterina Starfish – as well as for sea as well as coral reef storage tanks as a whole – is actually oolitic aragonite. This one-of-a-kind calcium mineral carbonate is actually discovered in the Bahamas. It is actually eco-friendly as well as is actually, consequently, an eco-friendly accountable selection. Oolitic aragonite typically assists sustain a pH harmony of 8.2, creating it needless to obtain as well as incorporate chemicals to the storage tank.

If you make a decision to obtain oolitic aragonite for the Asterina Starfish in your aquarium tank, see to it you are actually obtaining the actual factor. Oolitic aragonite is composed of spheric, soft surfaces. “Oolitic” suggests “egg-shaped”. If the grains in the item you check are actually slanted as well as tough, they are actually perhaps routine sand or even smashed layers.

Sometimes you are going to discover a substratum which contains each kinds of grains, suggesting it’s a mix. That is actually okay to make use of considering that it still includes adequate oolitic aragonite to gain your storage tank.

Tank Conditions

Asterina Starfish prosper in deep sea, in any way midsts, as well as in a large variety of temps. Because they are actually thus versatile for storage tank disorders as well as diet regimen, they tend to recreate at a quicker price than the majority of various other water critters. If you would like to increase all of them along with various other fish, after that readjust the storage tank circumstances to the requirements of those various other fish. If you would like to eliminate the Asterina Starfish in your storage tank, transforming the storage tank temp or even pH degrees won’t work in any way.

Tank Mates

Asterina Starfish possess no other way of tackling the fast-moving fish in your storage tank. But they may surely flirt on zoanthids. In some situations, the zoas are going to be actually left behind in tranquility due to the Asterinas, as well as in various other occasions, the Asterinas are going to eat every zoanthid visible.

Bumblebee shrimp, like Harlequin shrimp, are going to consume the Asterina Starfish. This is actually an excellent selection of shrimp to include in the storage tank if you would like to eliminate all the Asterinas considering that they survive on various other foods items at the same time. Harlequins consume just Asterina Shrimp, as well as you are going to need to ensure you possess a recurring source if you would like to maintain all of them in your storage tank lasting.

Can You Keep Asterina Starfish Together?

Asterina Starfish have a tendency to stay in teams, as well as regardless of whether you make a decision to obtain 1 or 2 of these critters, if delegated their very own units they are going to recreate till there are actually numbers of in your storage tank.

One means to take pleasure in taking a look at Asterina Starfish without stressing over damages to your storage tank is actually to maintain a distinct storage tank only for these little bit of critters. If you find a mass attack in your aquarium tank, get rid of all various other fish as well as invertebrates to a brand new vat. Then present 1 or 2 Harlequin shrimp right into the storage tank along with the Asterina Starfish. The shrimp will certainly enjoy to possess such a wealth of meals, as well as won’t reside in threat of being actually consumed on their own through predacious fish.


In bondage, if Asterina Starfish expertise dietary shortages, their nutritional requirements transform to aid all of them conform to the brand new setting. In that situation, they start to consume just about anything they can easily discover. Since it is actually incredibly challenging for laypersons to determine a specific species of Asterina Starfish, it is actually every bit as tough to deliver it along with the meals it typically demands. So maintaining your Asterina Starfish fed as well as delighted is actually a hit-or-miss condition.

Make certain you possess a lot of tool to big oolite aragonite in the storage tank’s substratum. This typically developed stone will certainly deliver bacteria for the Asterina Starfish to eat, stopping all of them coming from eating your coral reef. Raising coralline in your storage tank, which is actually a form of reddish algae, are going to likewise deliver meals for Asterinas.

Regardless of whether you possess all-natural or even man-made substratum, there are actually a handful of species of Asterina Starfish that are actually referred to as “non-selective omnivorous feeders”. Even when supplied along with various other kinds of meals, they consume just about anything they discover, consisting of reefs, algae, as well as polypus. These species consist of:

  • Asterias Gibbosa: Eats algae, coralline algae, cyanobacteria, sediment, small earthworms, as well as diatoms, as well as sometimes, they have actually been actually noted consuming Palm Tree Polyps (Clavularia sp.) as well as Corky Sea Finger (Briareum asbestinum). Asterias gibbosa lean to receive anxious as well as often drop their lower legs, which after that turn into brand new starfish. If you find yourself using this species in your storage tank, you are going to need to purchase shrimp to maintain the populace to a controlled amount.
  • Asterina Sarasini: Very challenging to discover in the storage tank, as they hardly ever arise coming from their concealing spots throughout sunshine. They consume cyanobacteria, sediment, as well as confine. They have a tendency to stay in big teams, as well as with each other can easily eat lifeless or even wrecked reefs in an issue of hrs.
  • Asterina Stellifera: In bondage, this species consumes as identical percentages of a variety of foods items as it will in bush. When there is actually a higher quality of grownups in a container, they have actually been actually understood to consume one another.
  • Asterina Coronata: A proficient “hitchhiker” as well as is actually the best often found species in coral reef storage tanks. Native to China, Indonesia, as well as Vietnam, they are actually challenging to find when they are actually tiny. They eat diatoms, cyanobacteria, as well as sediment, as well as may rapidly procreate as well as manage your storage tank.

As a loved ones, Asterina Starfish eat reef. Since lots of Asterina Starfish are actually opportunistic farmers, they may seriously harm or even reduce the measurements of any sort of zoanthid reefs you invite the storage tank. If you discover that the volume of Asterina Starfish in your storage tank is actually avoiding palm, you can easily minimize their amounts through presenting Harlequin shrimp – which are going to consume the starfish – as well as concurrently confine the volume of meals in the water through putting in a filter that gets rid of drifting bits.

Finally, when the Asterina Starfish arise in the evening to eat your coral reef, search for all of them as well as literally get rid of as lots of as you can easily through palm. This little bit of animal might be actually charming, yet in the end of the time, it resides in simple fact a fish tank parasite.


Asterina Starfish don’t require any sort of exclusive care if you wish all of them in your aquarium tank. The just factor to become thought about is actually that if their dietary requirements aren’t complied with, they are going to start to eat your coral reef.

Actually, just 5% of Asterina Starfish species are actually chronicled as being actually coral reef eaters. It is actually uncommon for those that don’t survived on coral reef to immediately establish a flavor for that specific food. There are actually expert aquarists that have actually maintained Asterina Starfish in their storage tanks for approximately twenty years with no troubles. On the various other palm, if you possess the rotten luck to join that 5% team, doing away with the little bit of bugs in your storage tank are going to be actually as challenging as attempting to free your residence of pests or even roaches.

The inquiry regarding Asterina Starfish is actually certainly not exactly how to maintain all of them, yet somewhat, is actually exactly how to eliminate all of them. How can you cleanse your storage tank of Asterina Starfish, if you make a decision that the existence of these water bugs are actually obstructing suitable care of the various other fish as well as coral reef you purposefully opted for to bring up as well as take pleasure in?

There are actually many measures to take if you would like to free your storage tank of all Asterina Starfish:

  • Decrease the volume of produced as well as reside fish meals you include in your storage tank.
  • Remove any sort of lifeless Asterina Starfish coming from the storage tank as quickly as you uncover all of them. If a lot of pass away instantly they are going to generate alkali when they start to rot. Test the water specifications frequently, to guarantee the welfare of the fish you would like to maintain.
  • To get rid of online Asterina Starfish coming from any sort of area in the storage tank, attempt pulling all of them up along with a chicken baster. This is actually much better than utilizing tweezers, which can easily result in the Asterina Starfish to shed several lower legs, which after that turn into brand new starfish!
  • Introduce Harlequin shrimp right into the storage tank to consume the Asterina Starfish. A condition can easily develop if there are actually insufficient shrimp to endure the shrimp lasting, through which situation you must provide the shrimp away. Otherwise, they can easily consume various other species of starfish you put in the storage tank, despite exactly how big they are actually.


If you discover that some of your Asterina Starfish appear to become missing out on several arm or legs, or even if it seems that some killer tore an Asterina apart, you can easily feel confident that no danger has actually been actually performed.

Asterina Starfish don’t multiply along with one another yet as an alternative reproduce asexually through splitting asunder throughout their facilities or even taking part in autotomy. This suggests that they lose or even “shed” several lower legs – a kind of self-amputation – adhered to due to the lower legs producing brand new superstars.

The apart lower legs are actually preserved through held nutrients till a disk as well as oral cavity grow back, as well as the brand new Asterina Starfish has the capacity to consume.

Are Asterina Starfish Suitable for Your Aquarium?

Most aquarists are going to respond to that inquiry along with an organization “No!” The Asterina Starfish in your storage tank feel like grass in your landscape. At initially, you could check out all of them as well as presume they are actually type of quite, yet they may rapidly avoid command as well as tackle their next-door neighbors.

Some folks possess Asterina Starfish in their storage tanks for several years, without going through any sort of visible damages. But the possibility for mayhem is actually regularly certainly there, as well as it isn’t worth gambling if you absolutely worth your coral reef as well as polypus.

On the various other palm, lots of people profess that Asterina Starfish are actually excellent for maintaining their storage tanks tidy. They acquire the glass wall structures as well as eat all the algae expanding certainly there.

Before developing a viewpoint regarding Asterina Starfish, it is vital to think about the complying with inquiry which has actually been actually presented through lots of aquarists. Are Asterina Starfish in charge of the damages as well as fatality of coral reef considering that they are actually consuming it? Or perform some Asterina Starfish begin consuming coral reef in a container, considering that the stony developments are actually actually infected as well as perishing?



If you are willing to take a small risk that the starfish you raise as pets may one day become annoying pests, you can introduce Asterina Starfish into your tank.

If you never considered raising Asterina Starfish, but discover one day that one or more of these little creatures in your tank, then accept as a fact of nature that this hitchhiker creature has arrived to stay.

Asterina Starfish don’t need any special care if you decide to keep them, and if you choose to get rid of them there are several natural options to choose from.

Are Asterina Starfish your starfish species? Let us know in the comments below…



Lucky author of (waited years for the domain). I've always kept a few tanks going. I keep a few African cichlids around in my 50 gallons but primarily focus on our 100 gallon which changes nearly every month depending on what my kids may have in mind.

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