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slime trails

Geoff Read g.read at niwa.cri.nz
Tue Nov 28 18:04:47 EST 2000

Juergen Schieber wrote:  

>  From my readings I gather that polychates are typically covered with a 
> mucous coating 

I think some produce it when they need to.

> and that some also live in mucous stabilized tubes in the 
> sediment. 


> Do errant polychates leave behind a sediment trail while they 
> move through the sediment (say a layer of sand)?  

Many errants may well be living in permanent burrows and  not be quite so 
random wanderers as that sentence suggests.  Any movement through 
sediment leaves a trace which lasts until the next disturbance.  There are 
papers about with X-rays of sediment profiles.

> And if so, is there any 
> literature discussing this and about the longevity of the slime trails once 
> the worm has moved on?  The question has relevance for observations in 
> bioturbated sandstones.  

Yes. But a geologist probably knows the track & trail & ichnology & 
lebensspuren literature fairly well.  If there is some particular need for info 
on the mucus residue aspect please clarify.  

  Geoff Read <g.read at niwa.cri.nz>

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