When it comes to photographing wildlife, nature, and various facets of ecology, I’ll work with pretty much anything I come across. Though I may carry a particular bias in favor of Anolis lizards and Nerodia watersnakes, there ain’t much in our natural world I don’t find extremely worthy of my time, imagination, and consideration. It certainly doesn’t take much to impress me when it comes to wildlife, and the Royal starfish, Astropecten articulatus, is no exception. I mean, look at this beautiful creature! This particular species of starfish is moderately common along my stretch of Florida coastline, though you don’t often see them washed up in the surf in such a healthy, robust state. Sometimes, however, the currents and various environmental factors bring them up to the shallows — and when they do show up, the Royal starfish certainly know how to bedazzle the lumbering hominids ambling along the beach. With their deep purple dorsal tone and accompanying orange trim, the Royal starfish is damn near impossible to not notice. Truly a majestic starfish.