Edible Sea Urchin

Echinus esculentus

What do they look like?

Large, circular and usually pinkish in colour (but sometimes greenish or purple), these creatures are densely spined. The spines are often pale with purple towards the tips. Their spiny shell is called a “test”.

Where can I find them in Scotland?

Found throughout UK seas they are usually located on the seabed as deep as 40 metres, but with luck you might spot them beneath seaweed in rockpools at low tide. Occasionally their tests are washed up on the shore and appear warty without their spines.

Up to 15cm
Size (Diameter)
10 years
Near threatened
Conservation Status

Quick Fact
Their name in Greek means ‘hedgehog’ owing to the spines that cover their bodies.

When rockpooling, please be careful to leave everything as you found it.

Discover more about how to rockpool responsibly by watching our Beginner's Guide.