STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Polychaete spionid larvae, scanning electron micrograph (SEM). Larva of a polychaete spionid or palp worm (Polydora). Note the segmentation and bristles or setae on this planktonic annelid. Larvae might remain in the water column for as short as hours as long as several months depending on the species. In the plankton spionid larvae feed on unicellular green and golden-brown algae. At the appropriate time, larvae settle to the sea floor and undergo a metamorphosis to the juvenile form that will further develop into an adult worm. Magnification: x50 when printed at 10 centimetres wide. Specimen courtesy of Jennifer Skinner, Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science.
Model release not required. Property release not required.