A. Forbesi, the common sea star, are dying out in New England and possibly along the east coast. Help us figure out why and how to save them!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

P. Miniata

P. miniata:

Unfortunately, soon after the health of the p. miniata deteriorated as well.  It remains to be seen whether the forbesi did in fact “infect” the miniata with their “disease,” but we will keep them separate from now on.

Next:  collect more and leave at GSO and in a separate tank from the miniata at Brown


  1. I'm interesting in learning more about the A. forbesi malady. I'm getting specimens now and they appear healthy when they arrive but fall apart within a week or so. I'm in charge of the Marine Resources Department here at MBL in Woods Hole.

  2. Hi Mr. Remsen! Thanks for showing interest in the problem. After compiling this blog, we in the Wessel lab and several other collaborators applied for a grant that would allow us to look into the problem further with funding. We should be hearing back about the grant in the next few weeks, and then we will continue with our proposed project that will include experiments and other research into the issue by collaborators from a variety of institutions. I have recently visited the New England Aquarium, which is having trouble acquiring A. forbesi from the Gulf of Maine area, but there is a man running a small aquarium in North Kingstown, Rhode Island where I live who has had no difficulty collecting forbesi from various sites across Rhode Island very recently. This particular man had issues with finding healthy forbesi in January of last year, and most he did collect fell apart and died, but after getting no results back from his pathologist who ran some tests, he raised the few forbesi that managed to survive last winter and says that these particular forbesi have been healthier than any population he's raised previously. This may be because the ones that did survive had immunity and are now flourishing. This man's reports are interesting because we have heard several reports similar to yours, but his is the only one that sounded promising for the forbesi population. I will update the blog whenever I find anything else out, and feel free to email me at elena_suglia@brown.edu. Thanks again for your interest!