NAS - Nonindigenous Aquatic Species

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NAS logo - click to go to the NAS home page Annelids (Phylum Annelida) are segmented worms that inhabit marine and freshwater environments, in addition to terrestrial environments. Annelids include three different classes: polychaetes, oligochaetes, and hirudinea (leeches). The most common method of introduction is from commercial oyster plantings. However, some are also introduced by way of ship fouling. The most likely potential impact is changing the benthic community structure of an introduction site. Some species bore into oyster shells or snail shells occupied by hermit crabs. Polydora ligni, a mud worm (pic 39k), was introduced to the west coast in commercial oyster plantings. At times they become so abundant that they bury the oysters in several inches of mud tubes.
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Data Queries and Species Lists

Mud Worm Picture Data Queries
Species List of Nonindigenous Annelids
(links to factsheets and collection information)

Links to News and Other Information

Exotics in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary
Phylum Annelida Biodiversity Resources
What's new at Annelid Resources
Annelida Systematics and Taxonomy
Terebellid Pista diagnostic difficulties
NE Pacific Polychaetes
Benthic Polychaetes of British Columbia and Washington

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