19 Apr '17, 7am

Scientists find giant shipworm in #Philippines

MANILA (AFP) - An enormous black worm that lives in the mud of the sea floor and survives on the remnants of noxious gases digested by bacteria has been unveiled by scientists for the first time. The slimy giant shipworm can grow up to 155 centimetres in length, despite living a sedentary life in ocean sediment and apparently eating nothing more than the waste products of the micro-organisms that live in its gills. "We are amazed. This is the first time we saw a shipworm as large as this. Usually, shipworms are only as short as a matchstick and are white," Filipino marine biologist Julie Albano told AFP. The shipworm is a not actually a worm at all, but a bivalve - like mussels and clams - and has its own brittle, tusk-like shell. Also known by its scientific name Kuphus Polythalamia, the mollusc is radically different from its smaller shipworm cousins, which burrow in - a...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/scientists-find-...

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