You’ve probably never heard of the Feather Star, which lives in shallow waters around the world. But once you see it swimming, you won’t forget it.
The Feather Star is like nothing you’ve ever seen before. You might be wondering: what is that thing anyway? Some kind of weird fish? A feathery starfish, maybe?
It’s actually something called a Crinoid. There are over 600 different kinds of Crinoids, and the Feather Star is one of them. But you won’t usually see them swimming like this, because they’re usually attached and anchored to a coral reef of some kind. So this footage is kind of a big deal:
The Feather Star actually has a mouth on top, and right next to that mouth there’s an anus (right next to the mouth? Ew.) The beautiful feathery arms are used for feeding purposes, naturally. And swimming.
And those aren’t actually feathers; you can’t pluck them out. They’re actually the animal’s arms, which branch repeatedly to the point that they resemble feathers.
So if the Feather Star usually just sits there looking like some kind of feathery plant, why is this one in such a hurry to get somewhere? We can’t be sure, but a diver by the name of Els Van Den Ejinden was lucky enough to have a camera on hand when he stumbled across the stunning creature in action.
And because we live in an age when the oceans are dying at an alarming rate, you might be wondering: is this footage rare because the Feather Star is endangered?
You’ll be relieved to hear that it’s not endangered at all. The footage is just rare because they don’t usually move. Because apparently when you’re this fabulous, you can afford to be lazy.