Feeding ecology and diet

Most ophiuroid species are able to feed on more than one type of food and use more than one feeding method. Researchers recognize two major feeding groups, however. There is a carnivorous group of predators and carrion feeders that usually have short arm spines and tube feet, and seize their food in one of their arm loops. Species in the second major group feed mainly on small particles from the substrate or suspended in the water. The arm spines and tube feet in this group are relatively long, and are the principal food-trapping organs. It has also been shown that some species, such as the amphiurid Microphiopholis gracillima, are able to take up dissolved organic material from the water. Basket stars, however, appear to be specialized predatory suspension feeders that mainly take zooplankton, or live animal food, from the water column. Basket stars capture their prey by a rapid flexing movement of the arm that encircles the prey. The prey is then gripped by tiny sharp hooks arranged along the distant part of the arms.

Essentials of Human Physiology

Essentials of Human Physiology

This ebook provides an introductory explanation of the workings of the human body, with an effort to draw connections between the body systems and explain their interdependencies. A framework for the book is homeostasis and how the body maintains balance within each system. This is intended as a first introduction to physiology for a college-level course.

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