Any idea what this is?
If I told you it was a starfish would you believe me?
The crown-of-thorns starfish is a native info-pacific species. These guys are known as corallivores and devout...coral. In fact, in the past 40 years there have been three waves of COTS that have had major impacts on reef systems in and around the info-pacific including on the Great Barrier Reef (as if there weren't enough problems plaguing it). Up close they're an alien species both enchanting and dangerous. But their appetite for destruction is all too well known in places like Australia and New Zealand. How hungry are they? Australian marine biologists attribute HALF of all coral decline in Oceania to them. Since then, great lengths have gone into the science of attracting them through the use of pheromones and removal post-wrangling but the battle continues to ensue. Get to the Great Barrier before it's too late but please respect these natural mini worlds and their beauty. They've got enough to worry about naturally already.