Weird, Deep-Sea 'Worm' As Long As an Arm
For the first time, scientists have studied a long, black, mud-dwelling creature called a giant shipworm. Though these worm-like creatures are common marine pests, eating wood from oceangoing vessels, very little is known about the biggest and rarest species, Kuphus polythalamia.
A documentary tipped off an international team to the location of several giant shipworms in a dank, sulfurous lagoon off the Philippines. The mollusks were lodged headfirst in the muck, with only their hollow, stick-like shells poking out. (See more pictures of strange-looking sea creatures.)
Team leader Daniel Distel, a marine biologist at Northeastern University in Boston, plucked a specimen from the stink and packed it into a section of white PVC pipe, transporting it live several