Strangeness of life: a sea worm deploys a horrible “trunk” to capture its prey!

Nemertes or “ribbon worms” are invertebrates carnivorous sailors who have a rather sickening hunting technique. The one filmed here probably belongs to the genre of Gorgonorhynchus, he is known to devaginate his proboscis, the white branch tube seen in the pictures. The organ functions like a slimy, sticky harpoon that allows ribbon worms to capture their prey, worms and molluscsand bring them back to their mouths before swallowing them whole.

If it looks like the worm is “vomiting” its proboscis through its mouth, it is actually stored in a special cavity above its digestive tract and called rhynchocoele. In this case, the worm didn’t want to devour this man’s hand, but unsheathed his proboscis in response to the stressful situation he’s going through – out of the water and ready to serve.bait of sin.


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