[Annelida] Tubes, egg cases, and other structures made by annelids

Charley Eiseman via annelida%40net.bio.net (by ceiseman from gmail.com)
Sun Dec 7 15:09:31 EST 2008

Thanks to everyone who has responded.

There is complete consensus that #3 is *Diopatra cuprea*.

Maldanidae represents the third order that has been suggested for #2.  Yes,
I believe they did break easily, but for my purposes perhaps it's best that
I simply indicate that similar tubes could be the product of many different
polychaetes, and leave it at that.

#1 has been almost universally ignored, except for one person who referred
me to a species that I investigated and discovered its tubes are much too
small, and another who assured me they would have to be made by insects if
they are in fresh water.  If anyone is familiar with *Tubifex* worms and can
provide or direct me to a good description of their tubes (size and
composition), that would be very helpful.  I'm not thinking that's what
these are, but I would still like to include a description in the text.
These are fairly near my house, unlike the others, so I will see if I can
collect a sample and find an aquatic invert specialist who can identify
them.  It appears that midge or possibly crane fly larvae are the best
explanation for these, but I have yet to find a description with sufficient
detail to confirm this.

I didn't expect #4 would get much of a response, but figured it was worth a
shot.  I was sent a photo of a somewhat similar tunnel made by Australian
termites, but I've never heard of any North American species that does
something quite like this.



On Sat, Dec 6, 2008 at 7:11 PM, Sarah A Woodin <woodin from biol.sc.edu> wrote:

> my guess given the tube and the region that number 2 are maldanid tubes.
> Did they break easily?  If so, even more likely to be maldanids.  In the
> intertidal number 3 is most likely to be Diopatra cuprea.
> Sarah Ann Woodin
> Carolina Distinguished Professor
> Department of Biological Sciences
> University of South Carolina
> Columbia, SC 29208
> office: 803-777-4141
> lab: 803-777-4254
> fax: 803-777-4002
> On Sat, 29 Nov 2008, Charley Eiseman wrote:
>  Hello all,
>> I am working on a field guide to the 'tracks and signs' of North American
>> invertebrates.  The bulk of it will be devoted to insects and spiders, but
>> there will be scattered references to annelids, and I'm hoping some of you
>> can help me make the coverage as complete and accurate as possible.
>> One category of 'signs' is the tubes made by certain freshwater and marine
>> worms.  I am interested in information on which taxa make these, and how
>> exactly they go about constructing them.  I have collected photos of a few
>> such tubes here: http://charleyeiseman.com/annelid.html and I'm hoping
>> someone can tell me what they are (or might be).  There is also a question
>> about earthworm burrows at the bottom of that page.
>> The book will include photos of the egg cases of *Eisenia foetida* and an
>> unidentified leech.  If anyone can provide information on variations in
>> size, structure, and appearance among the egg cases of North American
>> annelids, that would be very helpful.
>> I will also be discussing earthworm castings and the midden piles of
>> *Lumbricus
>> terrestris* (I have photos of both), as well as the effects on forest
>> soils
>> of introduced earthworms in general.  I live in New England and I'm
>> unclear
>> on the importance of exotic earthworms south of the glaciated region, so
>> comments on that would be helpful.
>> I think that essentially covers the annelid signs I'm aware of at this
>> point.  I would welcome any suggestions of other phenomena to consider, or
>> contributions of any photographs that would augment the ones I've already
>> mentioned.
>> Thanks,
>> Charley Eiseman
>> ceiseman from gmail.com
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://www.bio.net/bionet/mm/annelida/attachments/20081207/29bb44c8/attachment.html

More information about the Annelida mailing list