Peanut Worms, Sipunculid Worms


Photo: Chris Stephens

Called Peanut Worms or sipunculid worms, they are a small group of worm-shaped invertebrates in the Phylum Sipuncula. They differ from other worms in having a long tubular 'introvert' or proboscis which lies enrolled in the body cavity giving the animal an oval or peanut shape. When this introvert is in the body cavity it can be compared with the finger of a glove when it is tucked in the wrong way. Only when the worm is feeding or disturbed does the long tubular 'introvert' unfold from the body cavity. In the photo the introvert is the long tubular part of the animal on the right. Any good invertebrate book will give you more information on these animals. As far as molluscs are concerned they are the sole food of most species of the predatory snail family Mitridae.

Authorship details
Rudman, W.B., 2000 (December 28) Peanut Worms, Sipunculid Worms. [In] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

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