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European fan worm

European fan worm

What it looks like

  • The worm lives in a flexible tube up to 20cm long
  • The fan at the end of the tube is used to filter food and get oxygen from the water. The fan looks like a spiral.
  • It is larger than most other fan worms.

Where it lives naturally

  • Europe and the Mediterranean
  • Northern Africa on the Atlantic coast.

Where it has spread to

  • Victoria
  • South Australia
  • South west of Western Australia
  • Brazil
  • South east Asia.

How did it get to Australia

  • The floating young arrived in ship ballast water.

Why is it a problem?

  • Not sure if it affects other creatures that live in the environment that the fan worm has invaded.

For more information about this species go to www.marinepests.gov.au> Marine pests> Pest ID cards.

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