Wriggly sandworms and brimming rockpools

Spot the fish! See if you can spot the camouflaged fish in this picture:

Ever wondered what causes the wriggly sand minihills on beaches? One of the girls was worried they were actual worms, so a full explanation was required about these being the castings from worms after burying themselves in the sand as the tide recedes.

Latin name Arenicola marina – the lug worm – they are common on many beaches. Pembroke Bay on Guernsey has an abundance of them. Wikipedia provides more detail: ‘When fully grown, the lugworm of the coasts of Europe is up to 9 inches long and 3/8 inch in diameter. Other species on the North American coast range from 3 to 12 inches. The body is like that of an earthworm: ringed or segmented. Its head end, which is blackish-red and bears no tentacles or bristles, passes into a fatter middle part which is red. This in turn passes into a thinner yellowish-red tail end. The middle part has bristles along its sides and also pairs of feathery gills. There is a well-developed system of blood vessels with red blood rich in the oxygen-carrying pigment, haemoglobin’. Hmm..pretty gross…one of the girls had to tippy-toe around them …still convinced the worms’ castings were going to jump up and bite….in fact the sandy castings are the the sandy residue that the worms produce. Want to know how ….click here

Rockpools are also in huge supply on Guernsey, especially on the west coast near Cobo, L’Ancresse and elsewhere.. The usual suspects are in residence – sea weeds, anenomes, crabs, various shells and small fish..we came across a good website while here: a load of great uses for seaweed! Nice one – must find a way of getting more of the stuff onto my own veg patch….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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