Friday, December 05, 2008

European Fan Worm

The European fan worm (Sabella spallanzanii) has been found in South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia. It was first found in South Australia in 1985 at Outer Harbour.
Flexible semi-transparent tube up to 50 cm long and 1 cm wide. Feather-like projections (radioles) extend from the tube, up to 20 cm long. Forms large meadows obscuring the seafloor. Crown of the radioles varies in colour from orange to white to red-brown. Tube outer layer often covered in greyish silt, mud and other small marine organisms. Crown with two different size lobes of radioles - one lobe has more radioles that the and forms a spiral with one of five whorls,the other lobe forms a semicircle