species: Metalia spatagus in Lizard Island Field Guide (Lizard Island Field Guide)
Metalia spatagus

©Anne Hoggett: Test of heart urchin Metalia spatagus found on beach at Lizard Island. Enlarge photo to see distinctive pale narrow line enclosing the petals (the peripetalous fasciole).

©Anne Hoggett: Metalia spatagus test found on beach at Lizard Island. Note the peripetalous fasciole.

©Anne Hoggett: Underside of test of Metalia spatagus found on beach at Lizard Island. Note the large rounded peristome (plated structure that surrounds mouth).
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Echinodermata
Class Echinoidea
Order Spatangoida
Family Brissidae
Genus Metalia
Species Metalia spatagus



Distinguishing features

Features of the denuded test are necessary to determine heart urchins - see photo captions. In life, this species has short spines that are relatively uniform in length and it is light yellowish brown (Miskelly, 2002).


  • Size data has not been obtained.

Depth range

  • Depth range data is not yet available.



Local abundance

  • Lizard Island: Apparently uncommon as there are few records of it from this area, but that may be because it lives buried in sand.

Web resources


References that assist with identification

  • Clark, A.M. and F.W.E. Rowe (1971). Monograph of shallow-water Indo-west Pacific echinoderms British Museum (Natural History), London.

Other references

  • Miskelly, A. (2002). Sea Urchins of Australia and the Indo-Pacific 180 pp. Capricornia Publications, Sydney, Australia.