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Sea UrchinsSea Urchins

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Sea Urchin

Sea Urchins are small, spherical, and hard shelled sea animals, which belong to the class Echinoidea. The body of a Sea Urchin is covered with Spines, which help them to move along rocky seabeds and help in keeping the predators at bay, as they are mildly poisonous. These invertebrates are Omnivores and feed on Algae, dead Fish, Sponges, etc. Along with being aquatic pets, Sea Urchins are consumed as food too. Fresh Marine brings to you some of the best species of Sea Urchins. Prior to proceeding to them however, let us look at some of the common features of Sea Urchins.

Compatibility. Sea Urchins are peaceful and non- aggressive towards other marine aquarium invertebrates. They are Reef Compatible.

  • Habit & Habitat. Sea Urchins are usually found in groups on the rocky sea floors of the Indo Pacific Region. Sea Urchins are Nocturnal in habit.
  • Morphology. Sea Urchins have no visible eyes or legs. Instead, they move around using their Tube Feet and Spines. The outer solid structure is called a “Test” and is further divided into five different segments. Each of these segments consists of Calcareous Plates, which carry the Spines. The Spines are connected to the body by Ball Joints. The Mouth is located on the underside of the body, while the Anus and the Genital Pores are located on the aboral side.
  • Ideal Marine Aquarium Environment. Sea Urchins require a stable Specific Gravity of 1.020-1.025, a pH of 8.1-8.4, and a Temperature of 72-78°F. Sea Urchins require a Reef Aquarium of minimum 50 Gallons capacity per Sea Urchin for free swimming space. Keep ample Rocks & Caves in your aquarium for the Sea Urchins to hide in. Take care to control the lethal Copper & Nitrates levels in the water.
  • Aquarium Feeding. Sea Urchins are Omnivorous feed on Green Hair Algae or Green Filament Algae, especially Coralline Algae, Sand Shrimp, Vegetable Flakes, Dried Seaweed, and small Marine Invertebrates such as, Squirts & Sponges.
  • Aquarium Breeding. Though the Fertilization is external, but Sea Urchins do not normally breed in captivity.
  • Care. Usually Expert Aquarists are required as they are moderately difficult to maintain because of their venomous nature. Sea Urchins are quite brittle and may break easily.

  • Some of the best selling Sea Urchins, available at Fresh Marine, are catalogued below. These Sea urchins are classified according to their Families.

    Family: Diadematidae.

  • Longspine Black Urchin (Diadema savignyi). Also known as Blue Eye Urchin and Long Spined Sea Urchin, these Sea Urchins grow to a size of around 3” and are slightly poisonous. They occur in Black & Brown colors, and are striped in Light Blue color. At the center of the body, there is a Red colored spot and the Spines are covered with interchanging Black & White Bands.

  • Family: Cidaridae.

  • Pencil Urchin Assorted Color Urchin (Eucidaris species). Also known as Pencil Caribbean Urchin, Pencil Urchin, Mine Urchin, and Club Urchin, they are found in Caribbean Sea. They occur in Black & Brown colors. The body is covered with Spines, which beam out in different direction. These Spines grow up to two inches. They possess poisonous Spines, therefore proper caution is required while handing them. As the Pencil Urchin ages their Spines, develop Algal growth.

  • Family: Temnopleuridae.

  • Pincushion Tuxedo Urchin (Mespilia globules). Also known as Globe Urchin, Sphere Urchin, Tuxedo Urchin, Blue Tuxedo Urchin, Pincushion Blue Tuxedo Urchin, Crown Urchin, and Royal Urchin, they are non-poisonous & nocturnal in nature. These species grow to a size of around 2”–3”. The body has the bands of Black & Brown color. The Spines have deep Brown & Red colors and are short.

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