Ben_Rainbow's picture

Annelid (polychaete), Hediste diversicolor?

Observed: 25th July 2013 By: Ben_Rainbow
British Dragonfly Society - Sussex Group
Ben_Rainbow is knowledgeable about InvertebratesBen_Rainbow’s earned reputation in InvertebratesBen_Rainbow’s earned reputation in Invertebrates
130726 Widewater Lagoon (68) Annelid TBI
130726 Widewater Lagoon (70a) Annelid TBI
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dejayM's picture


Ben - you may have access to Hayward & Ryland but if not, these are significant -
'prominent dorsal blood vessel'
'antennae shorter than palps'
I guess a closer look at the head would help though but I think you're right, so I might agree quite soon. Do you have any more thoughts or detail?

A reasonable lookalike here -

Ben_Rainbow's picture

Hediste diversicolor

Thanks for your useful comments.
Having consulted Hayward and Ryland, I am more confident with the identification as Nereis/Hediste diversicolor. It's a shame I haven't got any unobscured pictures of worm's posterior.

JoC's picture

nereids (Ragworms) are difficult to ID

As Mike Kendall commented on another post, "identifying nereids from a picture is exceedingly difficult. The classical way to identify nereids is by the number shape and pattern of the small teeth on the eversible pharynx. These can be difficult to see but identification by close examination of the parapodia, the length of the antennae and the form and distribution of the chaetae is possible." Hediste diversicolor, the common ragworm, is said to be one of the commonest intertidal polychaetes in estuaries, but definite ids on iSpot are lacking. Neireis pelagica is said to be the commonest on rocky shores. You might like to have a look at dj’s N. pelagica which we eventually managed to id, to get an idea of the problems of ids for Nereid worms.
This is only part of the worm so ‘Ragworm’ is about as far as I would be prepared to go.