30 October 2012

A salmagundi of worms

Twelfth in a series of notes and comments on The Book of Barely Imagined Beings

Chapter 6: Flatworm

page 83: Penis worms. A study on the development of priapulids (penis worms)"throws doubt on a feature that has been thought for more than 100 years to define the largest branch of the animal tree of life." For more on deuterostomes see marginal note on page 47.

page 83: Other posts on this blog relating to Ediacaria here.

page 85: other creatures evolved more formidable features for attack and defence. See, for example, Diania cactiformis.

page 87: H mephisto. Here is an image of a "devil worm," the deepest-living animal yet found.

page 87: C. elegans. Here is an image from The Open Worm Project (used to illustrate this article):

page 88: Annelids, the segmented worms, are a large and diverse group. They include scale worms, polychaete worms with an eversible pharynx. Most of the time their jaws are tucked away, but when the worm wants to feed, the entire front of their throat rolls out of their mouth.

Polynoid scale worm

page 88: Christmas tree worms. Shown here:

page 91: tapeworms and other lovelies. Graphic and horrible but fascinating: Brain Parasites, California’s Hidden Health Problem.

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