New worm-snail is a super slimer

New worm-snail is a super slimer

A new species of worm-snail is rather snotty. Thylacodes vandyensis shoots out strands of mucus that tangle together, building a spiderweb-like trap for plankton and other floating snacks, researchers report April 5 in PeerJ.

Other worm-snails use this hunting technique, but T. vandyensis stands out because of the “copious amounts of mucus” it ejects, says coauthor Rudiger Bieler. This goo net, which can stretch up to 5 centimeters across, exits the animal’s tentacles at, of course, “a snail’s pace,” jokes Bieler, a curator at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago.

Like other worm-snails, T. vandyensis permanently glue themselves to spots. Bieler found T. vandyensis, which typically grow half as tall as a pinkie finger, on the hull of a sunken ship in the Florida Keys. But they don’t belong there: DNA analysis shows that this invasive species’ closest relatives are in the Pacific Ocean. The worm-snail may have made its way to the Atlantic as a stowaway on a ship.



Add Comment

all comments

  Other news

more
Burning boats

Burning boats..

26-Jul, 23:41

Outside Libyan waters, it has deployed military vessels to disrupt the...

Man arrested after live cobras found inside potato chip cans

Man arrested after live cobras found inside potato chip cans..

26-Jul, 15:20

A California man was arrested after a package addressed to him was found...

California independence 1 step closer as AG paves way for potential 2018 ‘referendum’

California independence 1 step closer as AG paves way for potential 2018 ‘referendum’..

26-Jul, 07:10

A new California independence campaign has got the go ahead to collect...

Ohio puts child killer to death with controversial lethal injection drug

Ohio puts child killer to death with controversial lethal injection drug..

26-Jul, 16:30

Ohio carried out its first execution in more than three years as child...

Trump's 'deportation force' begins to take shape

Trump's 'deportation force' begins to take shape..

14-Apr, 12:48

President Trump's campaign promise for more aggressive immigration...

New EPA head's emails indicate close ties to oil and gas producers

New EPA head's emails indicate close ties to oil and gas producers..

22-Feb, 18:02

More than 7,000 pages of emails from Environmental Protection Agency head...

Prince William, Princess Kate face off in rowing competition

Prince William, Princess Kate face off in rowing competition..

20-Jul, 16:11

Prince William won bragging rights today in Heidelberg, Germany, as his...

Stabbed London Bridge officer tells of fighting attackers

Stabbed London Bridge officer tells of fighting attackers..

28-Jun, 17:24

A British Transport Police officer who fought off three extremists in...