Najet's picture

Sealife washed up on West Sands, Fife.

Observed: 25th December 2012 By: NajetNajet’s reputation in Invertebrates
Sea slug
Blue shellfish
Fish with orange spots
Hermit crab

Incredible volume of sea creatures dumped on West Sands beach, St Andrews. On Monday 24th December you could barely see the sand for all the animals, mainly starfish, sea urchins, razor shells, shellfish, and crabs. Many if not most of the animals were still alive. There were also lots of what I think are sea slugs, alive. The biggest I saw was as long as my forearm. These are just a few of the things I saw. I'd particularly like to know what is the bright blue shellfish (seen as an odd blue squishy ball), the brown thing that looks a bit like coral, and what type of sea slug this is. The starfish is an odd one with seven legs, maybe it grew an extra one following an accident? There were many of this variety starfish.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


Mydaea's picture

The 'sea slug' at top left is

The 'sea slug' at top left is a sea mouse, Aphrodita aculeata, a worm.

Najet's picture

thanks, yes, I'm sure this is

thanks, yes, I'm sure this is what they are.

gramandy's picture

you need... put these individually onto the relevant areas - all of these are either fish or invertebrates :)

you have an array of animals here that you should attempt to ID .

scubamann's picture

Unidentified species

well there are too many in each photo but here goes, reading L to R and down.
Sea Mouse (as identified by Mydaea);
Tests ("skeletons") of (probably) Heart urchins[aka Sea potato] with common starfish;
(probably) sand brittle stars;
Urchin tests, with possible staghorn sponge [Need description of firmness etc.];
Probably a deformed sand star though possibly a mis-grown seven armed star;
Common starfish, with Razor shells;
Hermit crab;
This needs turning over for another photo, and a description of firmness, colour etc.

Photos 4 & 5 seem to be on some sort of mesh, I would be interested to know what.
You need to separate classes of photos,and separate items before photographing them [Get in there and get dirty!] try and take them from different angles [at least top and bottom] and describe the texture, firmness, colour, and any other identifiable features.

Overall this looks like damage/bye-catch from trawling, unless there has been SEVERE weather.
But well spotted. :)

Najet's picture


I will post better photos, these were just the first ones that I took on my phone while at the beach. The debris on the beach was quite incredible and is due to the huge storm last week in the North Sea - the dunes are all flat at the front now,very badly eroded.

gramandy's picture

you can...

....trim the images to be individual and post.