Worm casts on the seashore

Lug Worm Casts at Waulkmill Bay

Scroll down to content

The sediments at Waulkmill Bay must be very fertile judging by the millions of lugworm casts and burrows in the sand. They seem to occupy almost every space of the upper shore, and represent worms of every size, burrowing to different depths.

4 Replies to “Lug Worm Casts at Waulkmill Bay”

  1. Lugworms are marine worms that live in the wet sediments on the beach. They wriggle down and create a U-shaped vertical burrow which has an two holes at the surface. The front end of the worm is at one end of the burrow where there is a dip and hole at the surface. The worm eats the sand or mud to remove any organic particles attached to the grains, and then the waste products are squeeze out of the posterior end and deposited on the surface via the second hole of the burrow. The evacuated gut contents have the shape of toothpaste squeezed out of a tube – these are the “curly parts” or worm casts. The diameter of the tubular casts indicates the size if the worm. Small immature worms make a narrower cast. Lighter coloured sediments are from eating aerated sand near the surface of the beach, and the darker coloured casts are made of anaerobic sediments deeper down.

  2. Thank you. I had no idea. I am not sure we have lugworms here in the eastern US, I will check. This is fascination how it all works, and, that there are so many of them and how they affect the landscape.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: