Dr. Ron - the grey stripped worm again

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Tadashi

Premium Member
Dr. Ron Shimek,

I found the worm again and saw the head and tail. The tail tapered off to a point. The entire worm is about 8 inches and the head if flat like a slug. I found him in the substrate just below the surface on the glass. His body is the thickness of .7mm lead. give or take a little :)

When poked it just recoiled by pulling back (accordian-compression like, did not fold back) then gently started forward exploring again.

He finally burrowed in toward the middle of the tank but left his tail on the glass. I could not tell if he is resting or eating something. I do have lots of worms in my sand some spagetti worms the size of small bait worms to worms so small I need a microscope.

Thanks for the help.

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"Honey, put the bleach down and step away from the reef tank. I promise we will spend more quality time together."
My Bonsai-reef site
 

rshimek

In Memoriam
Hi,

I think I will stick with the first guess, as a sipunculan. If you can get a picture of the whole animal it will help.

Cheers, ron
 

Tadashi

Premium Member
I have posted the picture on my web page of the head (UUC page). I did not get the tail but the tail just tapered to a point.

------------------
"Honey, put the bleach down and step away from the reef tank. I promise we will spend more quality time together."
My Bonsai-reef site
 

JohnL

RC Staff
Staff member
Admin
Here is Tadashi's pic.
unidworm3.jpg
 

rshimek

In Memoriam
Hi,

I think I will revise what I think it is. I would guess now that it is a Nemertean or ribbon worm. These are predators, primarily on worms or crustaceans - and some can get huge, well over 100 feet long.

Anyway, the lack of apparent parapodia (appendages characteristic of bristle worms or polychaete annelids), the basic shape of the animal, as well as the variation in thickness are all characteristic of nemerteans.

Cheers, Ron
 

Tadashi

Premium Member
cool deal. Thanks JohnL. I did not know that you could post a pic like that.

Dr. Shimek - next time it apears should I pull him out or just wait until I notice something eating my corals. So far I have not see anything. How do you ID these? Do you have some master critter book or something?

------------------
"Honey, put the bleach down and step away from the reef tank. I promise we will spend more quality time together."
My Bonsai-reef site

[This message has been edited by Tadashi (edited 02-23-2000).]
 

rshimek

In Memoriam
Hi Tadashi,

Next time you see it, carefully remove it, put it in a flat contain against a black or white back ground and take some close-up photos of both ends and the middle. Then return it gently to the tank - it is effectively harmless to your reef animals.

From better photos we can get a good idea of what it is.

How do I identify these things? I have 30 years of teaching invert zoology and working with inverts. Rather gives one a bit of experience to work with.

Cheers, Ron
 
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