The Pacific Coast Asteroidea were monographed by Verrill (1914) and Fisher (1911, 1928, 1930). The purpose of this paper is to provide the field collector with a keyed guide to species that may be encountered from Pt. Conception to San Diego, based on species collected from various habitats encountered in the San Diego locale. In this manner, we hope that it will serve to complement Light's Manual (Smith, et. al, 1961), which is particularly good for Central and Northern California.
The observations contained herein were obtained with the use of SCUBA. This tool has allowed us to work to depths of 60 meters in the La Jolla and Scripps submarine canyons, and to make observations and collections efficiently; often in underwater terrain so rugged that dredges and grabs could not be used.