A strange, worm-like invertebrate observed in a small freshwater pool.
Was abou 40cm in length.
Resembled a long piece of yellow grass or piece of spahgetti.
Upon capture, it did not appear to have a distinct head or front end, although when observed undulating underwater, it was clear that one end was its front.
I have NO idea what this was...blew my mind.
We looked for what it emerged from, but found nothing. The water was moving pretty quickly so either it, or the carcass may have washed away. No idea how to ID these.
My first horsehair worm! Young are parasites of crickets and cockroaches, they grow really long inside the insects then burst out when the insects are close to water. The adults swim around in ponds (like this one was when we found it) and don't feed (living off the food they ate while parasitic juveniles) and lay tons of eggs. Yuck!
Nematomorpha (sometimes called Gordiacea, and commonly known as horsehair worms or Gordian worms) are a phylum of parasitic animals that are morphologically and ecologically similar to nematode worms, hence the name. They range in size in most species from 50 to 100 centimetres (20 to 39 in) long and can reach in extreme cases up to 2 meters, and 1 to 3 millimetres (0.039 to 0.12 in) in diameter. Horsehair worms can be discovered in damp...