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A worm that eats bones was discovered in a deep sea trench

These animals can survive in extreme se hazes and changes in pressure, they get all the oxygen they need by photosynthesizing.



Osedax priapus is one species that operates differently. It was given that name by Rouse and his colleagues in honor of the sensual frescoes of the Greek fertility deity. These guys have a long, extendable trunk that they utilize to stretch over the bone, and they are about the same size as the females.

Rouse describes this as “roaming the bone.” These males carry sperm inside their heads that they deliver to females when they discover them.

Osedax create acid in a manner similar to how humans produce stomach acid in order to feed by drilling holes in bones. In an effort to determine when Osedax worms first appeared, palaeontologists have discovered telltale holes in the fossilized bones of a 100-million-year-old plesiosaur, one of the enormous marine reptiles that formerly roamed the ocean.

Osedax are thought to have existed at least since the Cretaceous period, long before there were whale skeletons to eat, according to genetic analyses.

Despite the discovery of numerous new species, no Osedax larvae have been located to date. How the worms locate bones is unknown. It is thought that they might float until they come across a skeleton, perhaps led by chemicals that are present in the water.

These worms may build stepping stones out of whale skeletons and other large vertebrate remains stripped naked by scavengers, according to studies of Osedax DNA. According to Vrijenhoek, “Osedax probably just hop, skip, and leap all the way across the ocean.”