Echinometra lucunterrock boring urchin . However, it can coexist with congeners such as Echinometra viridis without competing for food or resources. ( Abbott. Description, classification, synonyms, distribution map and images of Echinometra lucunter – Rock-boring urchin. Pro-inflammatory agent which mediates the degranulation of mast cells thus evoking an inflammatory response. In vivo, when injected into rats, diminishes the.

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Rock-boring urchins are distributed throughout the Caribbean and coastal South Atlantic subtropical region, from Bermuda through southern Florida and the islands of the Caribbean particularly Barbados to Desterra, Brazil. Lewis and Storey, ; McPherson, This urchin is typically found in shallow waters of meters and has been reported at depths up to 45 meters. It is most abundant on tidal terraces and rocky shores in areas of high energy waves and on shallow coral reefs within rock crevices, and may be present though less commonly found on sandy bottoms.

This species has an elliptical shape with to colored spines on the arboral surface. Size at maturity is typically 40 mm in diameter or smaller, although some individuals recorded larger than mm have been recorded. Test color is variable between individuals, ranging between a black, brown, green or dark blue color with lighter colors on the arboral surface. In some cases the apical system of the test is bright red, with black spines.

This species is differentiated from other closely related species by having fewer pore-pairs per arc, fewer ambulacral and interambulacral plates, a different apical system, and slender, tridentate pedicellariae.

Like all other echinoids, it has 5 teeth located within a specialized feeding apparatus known as Aristotle’s lantern. As with many urchins, this species’ spines are venomous. Post-fertilization, zygotes undergo first cleavage after approximately 90 minutes.

Planktonic larvae develop in several stages, including the blastula reached at the cell stagegastrula cell stageand prism stages. The following stage, four-armed pluteus, is reached after the second day of fertilization.

Following the fourth day, posterodorsal arms appear and full metamorphosis occurs approximately 19 days after fertilization. This urchin is a slow-growing and relatively long-lived echinoid species with a life expectancy over 10 years. This species is usually found in dense aggregations. Spawning occurs once or twice depending on individual conditions in the summer. Individuals release their gametes into the water column, with males usually spawning before females.

This may act as a cue, stimulating females to release eggs. Sexual maturity occurs when individuals reach a test diameter of at least 20 mm and when ripe sex cells are present in the gonads. Gonad development occurs most often during spring, with spawning occuring in the summer, usually once but in some cases twice per year.

The gametogenic cycle comprises 5 different stages: Spawning may also occur during other times of the year outside of summer, depending primarily on hydrodynamics and nutrient availability. There is currently no published information noting the average number of offspring, gestation period, and birth mass for this species. This species exhibits no parental investment after gamete release.

Zygotes become planktonic larvae and drift unattended until they develop into the benthic adult form. Rock-boring urchins exhibit a slow growth rate. After completing their first year of life, average life expectancy is over 10 years. However, there have been no detailed studies documenting the average lifespan in the wild, and estimated lifespans in captive individuals are unknown.


This species uses its tube feet to attach itself to rocky surfaces and it has the ability to create its own burrows. Most movements occur during dark hours, when urchins move out of crevices and rock burrows to feed, primarily on algae, and then return to them for shelter.

This species also exhibits territorial and agonistic behaviors to defend its shelter and access to food from conspecifics. However, it can coexist with congeners such as Echinometra viridis without competing for food or resources. This species may occur in population densities of up to individuals per 2. These urchins communicate with conspecifics through tactile means, using their tube feet and spines and, when spawning, through chemical signals.

It is also able to detect shadows and chemicals released by its predators. Although they have no discrete visual organs, urchins have been found to express vision related genes in their tube feet.

It has also been found that their spines filter light from wide angles, allowing them to detect relatively fine visual detail species with densely packed spines have greater acuity than those with widely spaced spines.

This urchin is an omnivorous species, using its arboral spines to trap food and carry it to the oral surface where it uses a specialized feeding apparatus Aristotle’s lantern to graze and consume its food. Some of the macrophytic algae known to be consumed by this species include Dictyota sp. Gut contents of some urchins have been observed to include spines from other echinoids resulting from territorial fightsand sessile invertebrates.

Predators include fishes, birds, molluscs, and humans. Triggerfish are able to break urchin tests with their strong jaws and consume the viscera, while gobies consume the urchin’s tube feet and pedicellarie. Shorebirds, such as ruddy turnstones, flock over exposed reefs during low tide, pecking through urchin peristomes and eating the viscera.

Conch use their radulae to drill through the urchin tests.

Humans consume the gonads of this urchin. This species is able to detect some invertebrate predators’ odors and chemical signals, helping it to avoid predation. When attacked, an urchin waves its spines and tube feet as a defense and escape mechanism.

Morishita and Barreto, This species affects the development of coral reefs through shading, physical abrasion, and incidental ingestion of sessile epifauna, thus altering the community’s physical and biological structure. Because it is mainly herbivorous, it has a strong impact on algal biomass, affecting the biodiversity and functionality of its ecosystem by increasing the access to substrate for the settlement, attachment and growth of other benthic organisms.

In Brazil, reduction lucuntrr algal cover helped recruitment of sponges Darwinela sp. Most of this species’ relationships are commensal. Some goby and clingfish species, as well as crustaceans, reside within its spines for protection. It is, however, also host to at least two species of ectoparasitic copepods.

Humans ludunter the gonads of this species. This urchin can also serve as an indicator of marine pollution by the mercury levels found in its gonads.

Humans benefit from this species’ role in reducing algal overgrowth and in providing protection for small cleaning fishes, which helps to maintain the health of edible reef fish.


Marine Species Identification Portal : Rock-boring urchin – Echinometra lucunter

This species is venomous, introducing its toxin via its spines. In Brazil it is responsible for approximately half of all accidents caused by marine animals. Effects of the venom range from mild, temporary discomfort to pain and secondary infections lasting for weeks.

As of Marchthere is no active conservation plan for this species. This species is not endangered. This species is called by the common names red rock urchin or rock-boring urchin, but these names have also been applied to species such as Echinometra mathaei and Echinometra lucunetr.

Charpin, ; “Marine Life Profile: Rock-boring sea urchins”, It is the second largest ocean in the world after the Pacific Echiometra.

This includes Greenland, the Canadian Arctic islands, and all of the North American as far south as the highlands of central Mexico. Referring to an animal that lives on or near the bottom of a body of water. Also an aquatic biome consisting of the ocean bottom below the pelagic and coastal zones.


Bottom habitats in the very deepest oceans below m are sometimes referred to as the abyssal zone. Detritus is the result of the activity of decomposers organisms that decompose organic material. Iteroparous animals must, by definition, survive over multiple seasons or periodic condition changes. A large change in the shape or structure of an animal that happens as the animal grows. In insects, “incomplete metamorphosis” is when young animals are similar to adults and change gradually into the adult form, and “complete metamorphosis” is when there is a profound change between larval and adult forms.

Butterflies have complete metamorphosis, grasshoppers have incomplete metamorphosis. Examples are cnidarians Phylum Cnidaria, jellyfish, anemones, and corals. Coral reefs are found in warm, shallow oceans with low nutrient availability. They form the basis for rich communities of other invertebrates, plants, fish, and protists.

The polyps live only on the reef surface. Because they depend on symbiotic photosynthetic algae, zooxanthellae, they cannot live where light does not penetrate.

Rock-boring sea urchins” Echinomerta. Accessed August 18, at http: Studies on the activity pattern, behavior, and food of the echinoid Echinometra lucunter Linnaeus. The sea urchin Echinometra lucunter as a refuge for the barber goby Elacatinus figaro. Spatial vision in the echinoid genus Echinometra. The Journal of Experimental Biology Physical forces experienced by echinoid eggs in the oviduct during spawning: Comparison of the geminate pair Echinometra vanbrunti and Echinometra lucunter.

ADW: Echinometra lucunter: INFORMATION

Biodiversity, Innovation and Sustainability. Photographic identification guide to some common marine invertebrates of Bocas Del Toro, Panama. Caribbean Journal of ScienceVolume Tested studies for laboratory teaching. Accessed May 25, at http: Growth, survival, and longevity estimates for the rock-boring sea urchin Echinometra lucunter Echinodermata, Echinoidea in Bermuda.

Bulletin of Marine ScienceVolume 82, Number 3: Differential impacts of echinoid grazers on coral recruitment. Intraspecific agonistic behavior in the rock-boring sea urchin Echinometra lucunter L.