Common Names in English:
Curly Terebellid, Hairy Gilled Worm, Shell Binder Worm, Spaghetti Worm
Species Thelepus crispus
As with all terebellids, this species is benthic , few if any of the segments are longer than wide, the dorsal surface has no paleae, elytra, or felt, it has no cross-barred capillary setae, it has several long, threadlike, extensile , unbranched filamentlike tentacles closely associated with the mouth and are used in feeding but cannot be retracted into the mouth, the notosetae do not form transverse rows that extend nearly to the dorsal midline, the prostomium does not extend posteriorly as an elongated caruncle, and does not have a distinct caudal region which lacks setae, nor form an operculum. Terebellids have soft, light-colored pads on the ventral surface of all or most thoracic segments; these secrete the mucus which builds the tube . The anterior, "thoracic" portion of the body is often larger than the posterior portion. Thelepus crispus has no proboscislike extension to the peristomium , a single row of uncini in the thoracic region which, beginning with segment 8, is curved to form a nearly closed ellipse, 3 pair of slender, unbranched gills , and its capillarynotosetae begin on the 2nd or 3rd gill-bearing segment.
Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 328 meters (0 to 1,076 feet).
Terebellids build thin, membranous, sand-encrusted tubes in soft mud and sand . They extend their feeding tentacles from the entrance of the tube like spaghetti over the surface of the nearby sediment. Mucus and ciliary action on the feeding tentacles transports small organic particles from the sediment to the mouth . The tube of Thelepus crispus is usually made of fragments of shell , stone , and other detritus , is nearly 1 cm wide, and is cemented to the undersurface of or between rocks. It may leave its tube when disturbed and later build a new one. They circulate water through their burrows. The major phosphagen in these worms is phosphoarginine; phosphotaurocyamine is also present. Commensals include the polychaete scaleworms Halosydna brevisetosa and Hololepidella tuta.
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Grobben, 1908
- Phylum: Annelida () - Lamarck, 1809 - Segmented Worms
- Superphylum: Eutrochozoa ()
- Branch: Protostomia () - Grobben, 1908
- Subkingdom: Bilateria () - (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Kingdom: Animalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758 - animals
Status: Accepted Name
Last scrutiny: 24-Jun-1996
Other terebellids do not have three pairs of unbranched gills or, if they do, the rows of uncini are not curved to form an ellipse. Amphitrite cirrata is another spaghetti worms but it builds a membranous tube that is not encrusted with sand and shells, and has two interlocking, zipperlike rows of neurosetae. (Ref. 109953)
Members of the genus Thelepus
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 3 species and subspecies in this genus:
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- Allan Hancock Pacific expeditions. [Reports] Los Angeles, University of Southern California Press. url p. 242, p. 244, p. 270, p. 275, p. 42, p. 535.
- Bulletin - United States National Museum. Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, [etc.];1877-1971. url , p. 37.
- Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard College. Cambridge, Mass.: The Museum, 1863- url p. 267, p. 267.
- Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences. Los Angeles, Calif.: The Academy, 1902-1971. url p. 53.
- Current bibliography for aquatic sciences and fisheries. London, Taylor & Francis ltd. url p. 476.
- Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington. Washington, Biological Society of Washington url p. 179, p. 210, p. 59.
- The Biological bulletin. Woods Hole, Mass.: Marine Biological Laboratory, url p. 154, p. 155, p. 156, p. 158, p. 162, p. 163, p. 36, p. 40, p. 52, p. 54.
- The Canadian field-naturalist. Ottawa, Ottawa Field-Naturalists' Club. url p. 586, p. 84.
- University of California publications in zoology. Berkeley: University Press, 1906- url p. 207, p. 528.
- Voyage of the 'Albatross' to the Gulf of California in 1911. New York, 1916. url p. 10.
- Year book - Carnegie Institution of Washington. Washington, Carnegie Institution of Washington url p. 199.
- Zoologiska bidrag från Uppsala. Stockholm [etc.]Almqvist & Wiksells. url p. 218.
- Brands, S.J. (comp.) 1989-present. The Taxonomicon. Universal Taxonomic Services, Zwaag, The Netherlands. Accessed January 17, 2012.
Accessed through GBIF Data Portal December 14, 2007:
- Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University, Gwaii Haanas Invertebrates
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 220390
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: ITS-67980
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 13718568
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 67980
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 504887
- Cowles, Dave. Key to Invertebrates Found At or Near The Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory (a campus of Walla Walla University) Fidalgo Island, Anacortes, WA May 2009. [back]
- Mean = 155.400 meters (509.843 feet), Standard Deviation = 166.390 based on 5 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]