Skepticism

Slime shooting velvet worm (of doom)

Sounds cool, right, slime shooting worm? Well, it is MUCH cooler than you think.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dVb9yUOek88]

Found at Neatorama.

Amanda

Amanda is a science grad student in Boston whose favorite pastimes are having friendly debates and running amok.

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16 Comments

  1. Critters related to the guy in this video are banes of the home marine aquarium: they are hard to catch, grow and grow and grow, and use these mucusy nets to catch and kill beneficial inverts like snails.

  2. Velvet worms are actually really interesting in terms of taxonomy. They were once believed to be sort of the Archeopteryx of Arthropods–a sort of transitional form between a segmented worm and a centipede type animal. There are fossils that are almost exactly the same as the living animals today, too.

    Unfortunately, their DNA has turned out to just muddle up the story–they seem to be related to everything and nothing.

    UC Berkeley museum has a nice page about them, and you can look at their Tree of Life page if you want to see the taxonomists argue about them.

  3. Velvet worms are actually really interesting in terms of taxonomy. They were once believed to be sort of the Archeopteryx of Arthropods–a sort of transitional form between a segmented worm and a centipede type animal.

    Of course we now know they are closely related to the One-Eyed Trouser Snake…

    (ducks and runs)

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