A new worm-like animal has been discovered by scientists in the Philippines. The Giant Shipworm, or Kuphus polythalamia, lives in five-foot-long shells in the mud of shallow lagoons. While it looks like a worm, it’s actually related to clams.
According to the Daily Caller:
An international team of scientists from the University of Utah, Northeastern University, and the University of the Philippines discovered the animal.
The odd animal hardly eats, instead getting energy from beneficial bacteria living in its gills. This process is similar to the way plants use the sun’s energy to convert carbon dioxide in the air into simple carbon compounds during photosynthesis.
Watch the video here:
“I was awestruck when I first saw the sheer immensity of this bizarre animal,” Marvin Altamia, a marine science researcher at the University of the Philippines who was involved in the discovery, said in a press statement. “Finding the animal confirmed that. Frankly, I was nervous. If we made a mistake, we could lose the opportunity to discover the secrets of this very rare specimen.”