FORAGE FEEDING

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Caught on camera ‘walking’ almost like a caterpillar from boulder to reef ~ this Holothurian commonly referred to as ‘Sea Cucumber’ due to its shape ~ slinks across the reef using tubed ‘ambulacral’ feet often with suckers, that allow the animal to crawl along. At the anterior end ~ its fleshy mouth part tentacles can be seen sensing the ground. The diet of most sea-cucumbers consists of plankton and decaying organic matter found in the sea ~ this cucumber seems to be on the move in search of a substratum nearby where it will later forage feed…

Sea Cucumbers are a member of the Echinoderm family ~ there are other motile forms such as Starfish, Brittle Stars, Sea urchins and Feather Stars. Echinoderm literally means “spiny skinned” and calcareous spiny ‘papillae’ on their back offer some protection from predators.

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