A fanworm (Ficopomatus enigmaticus)
|Researched by||Saskiya Richards||Refereed by||Admin|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||Mercierella enigmaticus|
Recorded distribution in Britain and Ireland
Found at several locations around the British Isles, including north-east, south-west and north-west England, south-west Wales and off the coasts of County Galway, Ireland.
Ficopomatus enigmaticus is a southern species present in the mediterranean, south Africa, Argentina, New Zealand and Australia from where it may have originated.
Ficopomatus enigmaticus inhabits warm shallow sublittoral waters as well as brackish estuaries, docks and lagoons. This species forms reefs on different types of hard substrate including rocks and solid surfaces such as hulls of ships and pipes.
- Greenish or reddish-orange bodied tube-building fan worm.
- Body up to 2.5 cm in length and divided into 7 thoracic segments and up to 50-120 abdominal segments
- Most segments bear bundles of chaetae.
- Head with paired lobes, each bearing green, darkly banded feather-like tentacles.
- Operculum yellowish-brown, fig-shaped with dark, inwardly curved, chitinous spines.
Additional informationFicopomatus enigmaticus is a suspension-feeder. It has a planktonic larvae and reproduces by external fertilization. This species lacks true gonads and, although generally gonochoristic, hermaphroditism has been recorded in some populations.
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Last Updated: 03/07/2008