shipworms Tag

shipworms-that-feed-on-rocks

Shipworms are a group of wood-boring and wood-feeding bivalves of extraordinary economic, ecological and historical importance. They usually complete their life cycle in wood and most are thought to use wood as a primary source of nutrition. Recently, a new species of shipworms was discovered that bores into carbonate limestone rocks rather than into woody substrates.   Researchers from Northeastern University’s Ocean Genome Legacy Center discovered the...

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Shipworms are a type of wood-boring clam that look more like a worm wearing two shells as a hat than any typical bivalve. Currently, there are 70 recognized species of shipworms, broken into 17 genera. They can be found in every ocean in the world, living in driftwood, mangroves, seagrass roots, and mud. They can sink a wooden vessel just by munching on it. Some species...

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Shipworms and their bizarre wood-eating lifestyle loomed large in the fears of sailors for centuries, as they can send a vessel to the bottom with little more than concerted munching. Even today they can bring structures with wood pilings to their knees or under them. However, among other things, they are also intriguing as potential sources for new antibiotics, which led a team of researchers last...

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