PELLETS / REGURGITATES:
Digested / Egested Chalk Asteroids (Starfish)
The remains of Asteroids in the Chalk commonly occur as jumbled and disarticulated associations of ossicles. Often these associations contain ossicles from several individuals of different species, along with other echinoderm debris. These are interpreted as pellets or regurgitates of waste material, discharged by some unidentified Asteroid-eating predator. Likely culprits are fish, sharks, or larger starfish.
1). A good example of a pellet of discharged starfish remains, in this case Pycinaster cf. magnificus (x3.5, Friars Bay, Peacehaven, Newhaven Chalk Formation, Randell Collection, RR1194). Bryozoans are also present in this example.
GALE, A.S. 1987. Goniasteridae (Asteroidea, Echinodermata) from the Late Cretaceous of north-west Europe. 1. Introduction. The genera Metopaster and Recurvaster. Mesozoic Research, 1, 1-69.
WRIGHT, C.W., and WRIGHT, E.V. 1940. Notes on Cretaceous Asteroidea. Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society of London, 96, 231-248.