PORT PHILLIP BAY


Sand Dollar 

Clypeaster australasiae (Gray, 1851)

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

See below for information.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Echinodermata
Class:
Echinoidea
Order:
Clypeasteroida
Family:
Clypeasteridae
Genus:
Clypeaster
Subgenus:
Rhaphidoclypus
Species:
australasiae

General Description

The spines are very short and may be various shades of brown. Shape may vary from very flat to quite high and dome-shaped. Test diameter up to 14 cm.

Biology

This species extracts edible matter for its diet from the sand in which it buries. Deeper water specimens are much more fragile than shallower water ones from more northern areas. They are uncommon in Victoria, and usually encountered off far eastern waters of the state at depth of 40m.

Habitat

Buried beneath a thin layer of sand, to depths greater than 160 m.

Soft substrates

Coastal shores

Distribution guide

South-west Pacific and eastern Australia.

Species Group

Sea urchins

Depth

Shore (0-1 m)
Shallow (1-30 m)
Deep ( > 30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

14 cm

Diet

Plankton or Particles

Harmful

Spines can puncture skin. Venom status unknown.

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Recorded in Australia

Species Code

MoV 3844

Identify

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Not listed

Author

article author Miskelly, A.

Ashley Miskelly is a Consultant with expertise in echinoid taxonomy

citation

Cite this page as:
Miskelly, A., 2011, Sand Dollar, Clypeaster australasiae, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 18 Oct 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/6591

Text: creative commons cc by licence