Scientists recover living giant shipworm from Phlippines

Tuesday 18 April 2017 a week ago 24   Philippines   Print

Giant shipworm found from Philippines

Report  Web desk : PHILIPPINES: Scientists have found live specimens of the rare giant shipworm for the first time, in the Philippines. Details of the creature, which can reach up to 1.55m (5ft) in length and 6cm (2.3in) in diameter, were published in a US science journal. The giant shipworm spends its life encased in a hard shell, submerged head-down in mud, which it feeds on. Though its existence has been known for years, no living specimen had been studied until now. Despite its name it is actually a bivalve, which is the same group as clams and mussels. The "rare and enigmatic species", also known as Kuphus polythamia, is the longest living bivalve known to man, according to the study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). The team of scientists from the US, the Philippines and France recently found and collected five giant shipworms in Mindanao in a marine bay. A video shows the scientists carefully cutting off one end of the shipworm shell, before gently shaking it out. A long, slimy black creature is seen sliding out of the tube-like shell. 02