Mar 26, 2009

Imported Killer

Newquay's Blue Reef Aquarium's slow-growing and precious corals have been under assault. Each day people would return to their award-winning coral display, only to see still more corals having been torn asunder. Each loss was a heavy blow. It wasn't until they decided to break the display up that they discovered the culprit: a four-foot-long giant reef worm.

These reef worms come equipped with jaws that allow them to munch through corals, and thousands of bristles capable of delivering a toxin that can cause permanent numbness.




















This giant reef worm, seen above, now resides in his own dedicated aquarium, well away from the corals he once terrorized. No one knows exactly how he got into the aquarium, though the best bet is that he was imported as a juvenile by accident in a new batch of live rock.

As many saltwater aquarists know, you can never be sure what you're going to get when you bring some new live rock or live sand into your tank. You just might get a killer.

Thanks for the article, Vincent and Captain Geek.

7 comments:

Deaf Indian Muslim Anarchist! said...

eww..... that is so goddamned ugly and scary.

DoodleBunz/DB Impressions said...

Good lord, that is one ugly critter! Glad they discovered what was messing with the beautiful coral.

Anonymous said...

Yikes! It's impressive that they set it up in its own special aquarium instead of just flushing it down the toilet or something (yuck)! What does it eat when it can't eat coral? Cheetos?

Sherry of SofN

Anonymous said...

Can you say, "The Hidden"?

niner said...

Bleh! Four feet long?!

Denita TwoDragons said...

That's not a large sea worm--that's a small sea serpent! :-o

--TwoDragons

Angelo said...

I guess it's true. Here be dragons...