A scale worm (Malmgrenia lunulata)
|Researched by||Michelle Carter||Refereed by||Admin|
|Authority||(Delle Chiaje, 1830)|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||Harmothoe imbricata , Harmothoe imbricata (Linnaeus, 1767), Malmgreniella lunulata (Delle Chiaje, 1830), Harmothoe lunulata|
Recorded distribution in Britain and IrelandCommon around Britain with isolated records in Northern Ireland.
Global distributionRecorded from the western coasts of Europe to the Mediterranean.
HabitatThis species is found at low water and under stones or in crevices. Has been found among holdfasts of kelp on the Breakwater in Plymouth Sound.
- The body is 10-35 mm long, broad and flattened.
- Dorsal parapodia extended only as far as chaetae.
- 15 pairs of overlapping, oval scales.
- Pale reddish brown in colour.
- A dark spot on each scale.
Additional informationOften found living as a commensal with other worms, sea cucumbers and the brittlestar Amphiura brachiata. The pigmentation of the worm often perfectly mimics the hosts colouration.
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Gibson, R., Hextall, B. & Rogers, A., 2001. Photographic guide to the sea and seashore life of Britain and north-west Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hayward, P.J. & Ryland, J.S. (ed.) 1995b. Handbook of the marine fauna of North-West Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Howson, C.M. & Picton, B.E., 1997. The species directory of the marine fauna and flora of the British Isles and surrounding seas. Belfast: Ulster Museum. [Ulster Museum publication, no. 276.]
Rouse, G.W. & Pleijel, F., 2001. Polychaetes. New York: Oxford University Press.
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Last Updated: 10/09/2003