Very few students and a large number of Cambridge school-children composed the audience that heard Dr. Fewkes lecture on "Star-Fishes and Sea-Urchins," last evening. Mr. Nolen, the guest of the Natural History Society, introduced Dr. Fewkes, and stated that he was glad to welcome so many young people, for the policy of the society always had been to interest the young in Natural History.
Dr. Fewkes then spoke for an hour in an informal manner, avoiding technical terms and trying to interest eve the youngest. He gave a general idea of the habits and functions of the common star-fishes found in Massachusetts Bay and on the New England coast. He then told in simple language how the animals see, and illustrated the appearance of their eyes by drawings. Then he described the way in which a star-fish eats and how he opens the shells of oysters. The various kinds of locomotion were next described and the system of suckers, or ambulacral feet shown. The formation of new starfishes by division was next touched upon.
Dr. Fewkes then mentioned the different varieties to be found on our shore, illustrating his remarks by specimens and drawings, and dwelling at some length on snake star-fish and basket-fish.
The second part of the lecture was on sea-urchins. Their general appearance and characteristics were first spoken of and the points of similarity to the star-fish noticed. Then the different kinds of sea-urchins were described and specimens of them shown. Dr. Fewkes then brought up several points of general interest in regard to the habits of the animals. In conclusion the young of both star-fishes and sea-urchins and their development were touched upon.