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Biology/Natural History: This scaleworm is very common in some parts of its range, such as California and SE Alaska. It is an active swimmer and can live in a wide range of salinities. The species is a predator which lies in wait, then pounces on its prey, using its large, jawed proboscis to subdue them. Amphipods are common prey. It also eats some algae.

The pink eggs are released from the nephridiopores. In some areas, females of this species brood their eggs under the elytra; in other places they do not seem to do so. Brooding in our area usually takes place in summer. Larvae may have a long pelagic period or direct development.

Polychaetes this species may live commensally with include Thelepus crispus, Neoamphitrite robusta, and Diopatra ornata.


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© Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory

Source: Invertebrates of the Salish Sea

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