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Northern feather duster worm

Eudistylia vancouveri


The Feather Duster Worm is a member of one of the largest groups of marine worms called the Polychaetes. The Feather Duster Worm will partly emerge to feed on small planktonic plants and animals using a large (up to 2 inches) plume shaped feeding devise that reminded early marine biologists of a feather duster. Detecting motion using small but sensitive eye spots, the Feather Duster Worm will instantly pull its plume back into its tube at the slightest hint of danger, however the withdrawn tentacles lack a trap door to seal the tube. The flexible, leathery, parchment-like tubes are attached to hard surfaces and can extend for a foot or more. The tubes often intertwine forming a refuge for other marine animals.


Spotted at low tide at Tongue Point Marine Sanctuary.

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Brian38 5 months ago

Thanks for asking thorton20. The name simply came from early marine biologist who thought that the worms plume resembled a feather duster.

thornton20 5 months ago

Not to be rude

thornton20 5 months ago

Feather duster??
Why is it named that?

Brian38 5 months ago

Thank you Robert, Tukup and Mauna for your kind words. Thank you Daniele for the nomination.

mauna Kunzah
mauna Kunzah 5 months ago

Congrats on your SOTW nomination, Brian! :D

Tukup 5 months ago

Congratulations Brian. This is a beautiful critter and well-deserving of the nomination for SOTW.

DanielePralong 5 months ago

Your spotting has been nominated for the Spotting of the Week. The winner will be chosen by the Project Noah Rangers based on a combination of factors including: uniqueness of the shot, status of the organism (for example, rare or endangered), quality of the information provided in the habitat and description sections. There is a subjective element, of course; the spotting with the highest number of Ranger votes is chosen. Congratulations on being nominated Brian!

triggsturner 5 months ago

Stunning Brian. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Brian38 5 months ago

Thank you Liana, Mark and Neil.

Neil Ross
Neil Ross 5 months ago

An amazing spotting, Brian. Fantastic creatures, and the colours are gorgeous. The last two photos put everything into perspective. I don't recall seeing anything like this in our waters.

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 5 months ago

Wow nice spotting. I'll have to look closer neat visit to our shoreline.

armadeus.4 5 months ago

Love the colours on this critter. It really does look like a feather duster...I can almost imagine plucking one to use for dusting :D Wonderful series. Thank you for sharing Brian :) Liana

Brian38 5 months ago

Thanks for the kind words everybody. It would be interesting to see the actual worm. I also wonder why is the feathery plume is so colorful ?

Tukup 5 months ago

Amazing things you find Brian. Another winner. Thanks.

Zlatan Celebic
Zlatan Celebic 5 months ago

wow. Stunning.

DanielePralong 5 months ago

Oh my, the colors!

SukanyaDatta 5 months ago

I knew I had to see it on a computer screen...not on a mobile. I was right. This is wonderful. Your tide pools are fantastic...I want one!!!

Brian38 5 months ago

Thank you very much Lauren.

LaurenZarate 5 months ago

Brian, that is amazing!

Spotted by

Washington, USA

Lat: 48.17, Long: -123.71

Spotted on Apr 20, 2019
Submitted on Apr 28, 2019

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