Fromia polypora

Many-spotted seastar
Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora, Tasman Peninsula, TAS, Photo: Antonia Cooper
Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora, Port Macquarie, NSW, Photo: Andrew Green
Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora, Jervis Bay, NSW, Photo: Andrew Green
Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora, With Petricia vernicina, left. Port Macquarie, NSW, Photo: Andrew Green
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Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora
Fromia polypora


Temperate Australasia


Fromia polypora is one of the most common species of seastar observed on southeastern Australian reefs with heavy wave exposure. It is usually quite easy to see due to its long, bright orange arms which are covered in small, black papulae. Like most conspicuous, temperate seastar species, its diet consists mainly of sedentary invertebrates such as sponges and ascidians.


Max Size: 22 cm

Sea Temperature Range: 12.2-23.8°C

Depth: 1-280 m

Habitat Generalization Index: N/A

Also referred to as the SGI (Species Generalisation Index), this describes the habitat niche breadth of the species. Species with values less than 15 are found in a relatively narrow range of reef habitat types (specialists), while those over 25 may be found on most hard substrates within their range (generalists). Learn more here.

Conservation and Rarity

IUCN Status: Not Evaluated

Occurrence: Frequent (17.8% of sites)

Occurrence describes how often the species is found on surveys within its distribution. It is calculated as the % of reef sites surveyed by RLS divers across all the ecoregions in which the species has been observed

Abundance: Few (2 per transect)

Abundance is calculated as the average number of individuals recorded per RLS transect, where present.

Edit by: GJ Edgar. 2008. Australian Marine Life. New Holland, Sydney