Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Bearded Fireworm - Hermodice carunculata


These photos were taken when diving in Paphos, Cyprus, where Bearded Fireworms are extremely common.


Name: Bearded Fireworm  (Hermodice carunculata)
Order: Ariculata
Family: Amphinomidae

Behaviour

When disturbed, the fireworms puff out their poisonous hairs to protect themselves.  The hairs are actually brittle, hollow spines that can pierce skin and become lodged there.  This produces a burning sensation and irritation.

Distribution

Bearded fireworms are found in the Mediterranean Sea, Caribbean and Atlantic.

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