Biology

Size

Neocrinus decorus has a stem that is more slender than other crinoids, however it grows 3 or 4 times as fast as other species.

Adults are approximately 70cm high.

Growth

N. decorus grows:

  • continuously throughout its lifetime
  • 10-17cm per year

Like other echinoderms, Neocrinus has amazing powers of regeneration. Individuals are able to lose about two thirds of the calyx and arms and still be capable of regenerating the missing parts.

The crinoid can also shed parts of its stem if attacked by predatory sea urchins and it has been shown that in individuals where the calyx and arms have been detached from the stem, the calyx is able to completely regenerate a stem.

Life Expectancy

The average lifespan of Neocrinus sea lilies is unknown but they probably live for several years. Some crinoids are thought to live for over 10 years.

Individual stem elements that have been shed by the parent crinoid are able to survive, presumably without feeding, for over 13 months.

Dispersal

Dispersal is primarily via a planktonic larval stage although adults are also capable of limited mobility, assisting in species dispersal.

  • Reproduction and lifecycle

    Neocrinus decorus occurs as both male and female individuals. Learn how and when reproduction takes place and about the various developmental stages of this free-living stalked crinoid.