The Bearded Worm
On the ocean floor nearly a mile and half down in the Pacific Ocean is an eerie, dark place. The water is very warm -- around 23 degrees Celsius! It bubbles out of huge natural rock-like chimneys (some over 30 feet tall) that seem to grow out of the earth. And, quite frankly, it stinks. It smells like rotten eggs. But this is the home to the bearded worm, or what scientists call a "pogonophore," who thrive in this strange and bizarre place.
Fast Facts about Bearded Worms:
-- Bearded worms are very unusual looking with a red beard and are over ten feet in length.
-- Their red beard is actually made up of bright red tentacles instead of hair. An average bearded worm has over 200,000 tentacles!
-- This undersea worm is the only type of worm with a beard.
-- They grow from both ends and don't have digestive systems.
-- Bearded worms don't have mouths, so they get nourishment from the bacteria that lives inside of them.
-- They are the fastest growing worms in the world!
-- They make their home in an undersea vent -- an opening in the ocean floor.