brittle star

noun
any echinoderm of the class Ophiuroidea, having the body composed of a central, rounded disk from which radiate long, slender, fragile arms.
Also, brittlestar.
Also called serpent star.


Origin:
1835–45

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

brittle star

any of the 2,000 living species of marine invertebrates comprising the class Ophiuroidea (phylum Echinodermata). Their long, thin arms-usually five and often forked and spiny-are distinctly set off from the small disk-shaped body. The arms readily break off but soon regrow-i.e., are regenerated

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
The red brittle star in the foreground is an unknown species.
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