This Terrifying Monster Is a Real Animal

Image for article titled This Terrifying Monster Is a Real Animal

Let's hope that no mad scientists discover an augmentation ray, because I would not like this hydrothermal worm to be the size of a whale. Heck, I don't even want it to be the size of a striped bass.

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The image was taken by a Quanta Scanning Electron Microscope, which can magnify things up to one million times. The microscopic beast is a worm found in a hydrothermal vent, an Earth fissure that puts water and hot gasses in contact, generating rich life environments. Worms like this don't have a digestive tract, but bacteria that transforms hemoglobin into carbon compounds. The worm can absorb the carbon compounds directly.

Yes, there are vampire bacteria living inside the worms. The world is a wonderful place. [FEI]

DISCUSSION

By
JC needs a vacation

Pfft, lightweight.

Water bears (Tardigrades) live everywhere from the top of the Himalays to bottom of the deep sea floor, from the frozen arctic to the equator, from almost absolute zero to 304 deg. F. They put up with a thousand times the radiation of most any other animals and when they were exposed to the vacuum of space for ten days and brought back to Earth, they weren't only mostly alive, but many of them had laid eggs in the meantime.

[en.wikipedia.org]