The Natural History of the Thread Starfish

Art Textiles


This blog tells the story of the discovery, examination and classification of a new order of Starfish, Linumasteroideae, the Thread Starfish. These rare and localised species of starfish are found only along the north coast of Norfolk.

Taxonomy of Thread Stars - Linumasteroidea

Phylum: Echinodermata - Spiny skinned animals: sea urchins, starfish and their allies

Class: Echinozoa - Sea Cucumbers
Class: Crinoidea - Sea Lilies and Feather Stars
Class: Asterozoa - Sea Stars
Class: Linumasteroideae - Thread Starfish

Family: Linumharpago - Hooked Thread Starfish

Genus: Linumpinnatus
Linumpinnatus funiculus - Feather String Starfish

Genus: Linumasteroida
Linumasteroida purgamentum - Bycatch Starfish

Genus: Linumtexturus
Linumasteroida texturus - Textured Starfish

Genus: Linumfenestra
Linumfenestra linus - Wire Thread Starfish
Linumfenestra funiculus - String Thread Starfish

Thread starfish are generally classified according to the structure of their stitch and their fibre construction.