The red cushion star is the largest sea star found within its range, sometimes growing to about 50 centimetres (20 in) in diameter. It usually has five thick, broad arms projecting from a broad cushioned disc but some specimens have four, six or seven. The upper surface is hard and is covered with blunt spines. The colour of adults is some shade of red, orange, yellow or brown. The juveniles are greenish-brown with mottled markings

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