What is the economic importance of echinoderms?

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Asked

What is the economic importance of echinoderms?

5

The calcareous tests or shells of echinoderms are used as a source of lime by farmers in areas where limestone is unavailable; indeed 4,000 tons of the animals are used annually for this purpose. This trade is often carried out in conjunction with shellfish farmers, for whom the starfish pose a major irritation by eating their stocks.