Urchin Climber

The Urchin Climber (Mespilia globulus) is a small marine (saltwater) in the Temnopleuridae family. It is also known as the Ball Urchin.

The Urchin Climber is spherical (ball-shaped) with broad bright blue stripes from top to bottom. In between the blue stripes are bands of short, thin spines called quills that are positioned close together. The quills are black or brown with white tips. 

Urchin Climber

It grows to 4-5 centimetres (2 inches) in length. The quills are about 2 centimetres (one inch) long.

It is common in the Red Sea, the Indian Ocean, and the Pacific Ocean. It grows on hard surfaces, such as rocks in tropical reefs and lagoons. It is benthic because it lives on the bottom of the ocean. 

It is nocturnal, active at night. It is herbivorous (eating plants) and detrivorous (eating dead or decayed matter).

The female Urchin Climber releases eggs into the water, where they hatch into larvae. The larvae settle in between coral before finding a place to settle.

Urchin Climber
Urchin Climber

Location of photographs: Aquarium de Paris-Cinéaqua, France

Photographer: Martina Nicolls


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