10-Foot Bobbit Worm is Like a Creature From Your Nightmares

Bobbit Worm 1

Appearing with no warning whatsoever and slicing its prey in half with its scissor-like jaws, this bizarre predatory aquatic creature is known colloquially as the Bobbit worm (Eunice aphroditois). Rainbow-hued and segmented, the organism buries itself in the gravel, mud and coral at the bottom of the sea and waits until one of its five antennae senses prey nearby to make its move.

Bobbit Worm – Dinner time from liquidguru on Vimeo.

The motion of its jaws as it snatches an unsuspecting fish and pulls it deep into its oceanic nightmare hole gives it an alien appearance that’s deeply unsettling. Check out a gif at io9 to watch that motion in all of its terrifying glory. Bobbit Worm 2

Even beyond those incredibly sharp teeth, the Bobbit worm is capable of dealing some major damage to its prey animal. The inject a toxin into the fish that either puts it into a drugged state or kills it outright, but makes it safer to ingest, especially if the prey is larger than the worm. But that’s not always the case. Amazingly enough, these aquatic worms can grow up to ten feet long. What looks at first like an anemone harmlessly blowing in the current on the ocean floor turns out to just be the beginning of this incredible creature as it shoots out of its hole, revealing the entire length of its body.

Creative Commons images by DreamofShadows and EdgarL2D18 via Wikimedia Commons

Bobbit Worm – Dinner time from liquidguru on Vimeo.