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see EchinodermataEchinodermata
[Gr.,=spiny skin], phylum of exclusively marine bottom-dwelling invertebrates having external skeletons of calcareous plates just beneath the skin. The plates may be solidly fused together, as in sea urchins, loosely articulated to facilitate movement, as in sea
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; feather starfeather star,
common name of a class of echinoderms that, as juveniles, are attached to the sea bottom by a stalk with rootlike branches; the mouth side faces upward. In the adult stage they break away from the stalk and move about freely.
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; sea lilysea lily,
stalked echinoderm of the class Crinoidea. Sea lilies are ancient, having reached their peak in the Middle Mississippian period; about 5,000 fossil species are known. About 80 modern species remain.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a class of benthic invertebrates of the phylum Echinodermata. They have a cup-shaped body, or calyx, in the middle of which is a mouth; the body is crowned by feathery, generally branching, upwardly directed rays. There are five rays at the base of the calyx and ten or more (up to 200) further up. The loose crown forms a net for catching small planktonic organisms and detritus, upon which the crinoids feed.

Stalked crinoids, or sea lilies, have a segmented stalk, which is up to 1 m long. Fixed to the base of the calyx, the stalk attaches itself to the sea bottom. Stalkless crinoids, or comatulids, have numerous movable processes (cirri) and can crawl and swim. Sea lilies, of which there are approximately 80 species, are found at depths to 9,700 m. Stalkless forms, of which there are about 550 species, are most diverse in the shallow waters of tropical seas and are often brightly colored. Adult invertebrates develop from free-swimming larvae and a sessile stalked stage.

More than 5,000 species of fossil crinoids have been traced to the Lower Ordovician. They reached the height of their development in the Middle Paleozoic (several subclasses). By the end of the Paleozoic, most species had become extinct. The subclass Articulata, to which all extant crinoids belong, has been traced back to the Triassic.


Zhizn’ zhivotnykh, vol. 2. Moscow, 1968.
Hyman, L. H. The Invertebrates, vol. 4. New York-London, 1955.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


(invertebrate zoology)
A class of radially symmetrical crinozoans in which the adult body is flower-shaped and is either carried on an anchored stem or is free-living.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
farcimen, Luidia spp., Urticina spp., and unidentified Crinoidea) exhibited slight, but significant, differences in densities between energized and unenergized cables.
rubescens (mean = 2.2 versus 1.0 per 100 [m.sup.3]) were higher on the east side, while that of black Crinoidea was higher on the west side (mean = 1.7 versus 0.7 per [100.sup.3]).
Echinodermata Bruguiere, 1791 (ex Klein, 1734) Crinoidea Miller, 1821 Crinoidea indet.
Lithological Outcrops Crinoidea Asteroidea Echinoidea units indet.
Fine structure of syzygial articulations before and after arm autotomy in Florometra serratissima (Echinodermata: Crinoidea).
BLASTOIDEA Elaecrinus verneulianus (Troost) Heteroschisma pyramidatus (Shumard) CRINOIDEA Dolatocrinus lacus Lyon Dolatocrinus liratus (Hall) Dolatocrinus major Wachsmuth and Springer Megistocrinus depressus (Hall) Megistocrinus rugosus Lyon and Casseday Megistocrinus spinosulus Lyon TABLE 2 Species diagnoses table for Goniocrinus.
Brooding and paedomorphosis in the deep-water feather star Comatilia iridometriformis (Echinodermata: Crinoidea).
Effects of current speed on filtration during suspension feeding in Oligometra serripinna (Echinodermata: Crinoidea).
Ecology and functional morphology of the isocrinid Cenocrinus asterius (Linnaeus) (Echinodermata: Crinoidea): in situ and laboratory experiments and observations.
Fine structure of the doliolaria larva of the feather star Florometra serratissima (Echinodermata: Crinoidea), with special emphasis on the nervous system.
Class Number of species Number (%) with SCB Echinoidea 7 5(71) Ophiuroidea 9 5(56) Asteroidea 14 5(36) Holothuroidea 2 2(100) Crinoidea 1 0(0) Total 33 17(51.5)