A starshake is not readily distinguished from a heartshake, as the appearance of a log of wood affected by one is very similar to that of a log affected by the other, but the difference between the two is that while the center of a log affected by a heartshake is decayed so as to leave a large round cavity at this point, a log affected by a starshake shows no such decay at the center, but the cracks forming the star extend right across the cross section of the log, becoming wider as they approach the center and narrowing down to nothing near the bark, while all of the wood has the appearance of being sound.