During a recent visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium I was treated to the remarkable sight of a bat star’s (Asterina miniata) stomach in action! On display in the Deep Reefs tank, the star had used its tube feet to pick up a small silver bait fish leftover from a recent feeding.
The star crawled part way up the glass, pinned the fish in place, and extruded its stomach to begin digestion! Here’s a closeup:
When I went back just under 24 hours later, the fish had been largely consumed: