Scientists from the Museum Victoria have discovered a new set of deep ocean beings which have sparked their interest. After a month-long deep ocean expedition, they have encountered a trove of new species. So much so that the peanut worms has sparked much interest, as it has at least 320 other related species.
The Peanut Worms – Definition and New Discovery
The Sipuncula are best known as peanut worms. They are spread throughout the oceans of the world in various types of climates. What differentiates them from other species is the fact that they have a retractile muscle which, basically, helps them retreat within their body whenever they feel threatened.
The Peanut worms have an unsegmented and symmetrical body. One other peculiar characteristic which can be found at both the more commonly known species and the new-found member of the species of peanut worms is that it can reproduce both via sexually and asexually means.
Dr. Tim O’Hara, chief scientist and Senior Curator at Museums Victoria, states that the reason for their exploration of the Australian deep-sea shore is that:
“Australia’s deep-sea environment is larger in size than the mainland, and until now, nearly nothing was known about life on the abyssal plain”.
The newest member of the family of Sipuncula has made quite an entry, Twitter users sharing the news while also making jokes about the peanut worm. However, there will be much research done on these species.
The reveal of sea spiders, the faceless fish, the flesh-eating crustacean, and the peanut worms has made an astonishing impact. And these findings will surely attain massive interest from the scientific communities, as the researchers themselves have said. But most noteworthy is the fact that during their one-month expedition they found a frightening amount of dump scattered across the abyssal land.
“We’re 100 kilometers off Australia’s coast and have found PVC pipes, cans of paints, bottles, beer cans, woodchips, and other debris from the days when steamships plied our waters.”
As such, the peanut worms are the main attraction of the media newsfeed for people in general, while the academic community is interested and is already thinking of ways of studying the peanut worms and the rest of the abyssal animals discovered.
Image Source: ibtimes.co.uk