How Can You Preserve Starfish?

can-preserve-starfish Credit: Nancy Ross/E+/Getty Images

To preserve a starfish, soak it in rubbing alcohol for up to 48 hours before placing it outdoors to dry. The drying process can take several days, but it may be hastened by placing the starfish on a bed of salt and baking soda. Choose a large container to ensure there is enough space for heavy objects to weigh the arms down. Add a sealant to the starfish after drying, if desired.

  1. Soak the starfish

    Soak the starfish in rubbing alcohol for 48 hours, or place the starfish in a solution made with 1 part bleach and 3 parts water for one minute. Remove the starfish with a slotted spoon, and place it on several paper towels.

  2. Place the starfish in a sunny location outdoors

    Weigh the arms of the starfish down with a heavy object, such as rocks, to prevent them from curling. To speed up the drying process, place the starfish on top of a mixture of equal parts baking soda and salt in a shallow dish, and allow the starfish to dry in a sunny location outdoors for 48 hours.

  3. Apply a protective sealant

    If desired, apply a sealant, such as an aerosol polyurethane, to complete the preservation.