Ribbon worm - day 3 at Hopkins

  • Saad Bhamla

I identified the ribbon worm as it was swimming on the air-water interface. Based on it swimming and sinking behavior, i am guessing it is negatively buoyant, but it is a mystery to me how it kept itself attached to the air-water interface.



Unfortunately, I did not take an image before, but on touching it to bring it to a glass slide, i found it to shrink approximately 250-350 % of its body size. You can confirm this yourself, by comparing the foldscope videos, with this final image, after releasing it back to the water.


Here are two videos:

It’s not clear what the flow inside the worm is – is it sucking the water and filter-feeding? Or is it particles inside its gut? The head darting around made it challenging to track.

Here’s another video.




This article and its reviews are distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and redistribution in any medium, provided that the original author and source are credited.