Odontosyllis enopia

I did see it, honest!

I did see it, honest!

Well, that was my attempt  to capture on film the most amazing mating process ever. It has not been blacked out for decency sake – just demonstrates iPhone limitations!

Odontosyllis enopia, a teethed and necklaced worm; 10-20mm long they live in the sandy bottoms of coastal water around Bermuda. For the most part nobody would know they were there and they don’t do much. Then on the 2nd and third nights after full moon, at 56 minutes after sunset, they put on the performance of their lives. The female appears first, spinning in excited circles of fluorescent green.  Then the males are supposed to come zooming up to the surface, he glows when he finds her – powerful chemical attraction going on – then, well, she releases eggs and he releases sperm and off they go back home, job done.

July and Augusts are supposedly the best months to see it but last August was a washout so we tried our luck last night.  We saw several over a period of ten minutes, popping up in the shelter of the dock and by the slipway. Magic!

Sorry I can’t show you!

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