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 Carport Herping

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DaganGecko
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PostSubject: Carport Herping   Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:59 pm

My grandfather found this cool critter on the carport and thought I might be interested. Of course I was, and much to the horror of my Grandma, picked the strange thing up.

I believe it is a "horsehair worm" of the phylum Nematomorpha, which is similar but not the same as nematodes. I am no expert, however.

Here it is, complete with cheesy music. Check out about 52 seconds in...weird. The critter was very stiff and I wonder if he got caught by the cold.



And I took a few pics.


Wriggling along...


Mine was about 11 inches long, as you can see by this computer paper


I put it in the leaves and away it went! However it had trouble moving on the smooth surface of the carport.

Some interesting info about "nematomorpha" that I picked out of the article:

*50 to 100 centimeters long, but in some cases can be up to 2 meters long
*no excretory, respiratory or circulatory systems
*internal fertilization of eggs that are then laid in gelatinous strings
*they are parasitic: the larvae live inside a host and absorb nutrients directly through their skin
*the larvae live inside crickets, beetles, cockroaches, grasshoppers, and other critters. If one of these critters is consumed by an animal, the worm can still survive and wriggle out (you know where!)
*the adults are mostly free living in freshwater or marine environments, and males and females aggregate into tight balls during mating.

Anyway, I hope my identification is correct, but I thought it was pretty interesting!

P.S. Nick, we need an insect/bug/arachnid/crustacean/parasite/etc. discussion area!
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ezekiel21
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Thu Dec 08, 2011 10:14 pm

Very weird..... Very neat Smile
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smb2585
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Thu Dec 08, 2011 10:24 pm

weird but pretty awesome
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Focal
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Thu Dec 08, 2011 10:56 pm

That's neat and the music was fitting LOL
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DaganGecko
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Thu Dec 08, 2011 11:09 pm

Well, I thought it was pretty cool. I guess I'm a nerd. Haha.
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smd58
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Thu Dec 08, 2011 11:26 pm

Vary strange, but vary cool. nice color also.
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jw
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Fri Dec 09, 2011 11:24 am

Thanks for sharing! I agree with your ID. I've never seen one alive.
Also like the idea of an invertebrate area.
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DaganGecko
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PostSubject: Re: Carport Herping   Tue Dec 13, 2011 8:56 pm

I really enjoyed seeing this critter in person. I generally can't resist trying to ID them.
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Carport Herping
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