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basket star | by fins'n'feathers
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basket star

The basket star is an animal that lives in the branches of sea fans on coral reefs. During the day they curl up in a small ball and sleep. At night, they unfurl their long, multiple armed branches, which act as filters in the current, grabbing and eating plankton and microscopic critters drifting by. The branches can be up to two feet long. This was a small one, only about 6 inches.

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Taken on August 12, 2009