Imagine going out to fish and instead of snagging carp or tuna, you capture an alien-like creature? That’s exactly what happened to Wei Cheng Jian, who, while trying his luck out in Taiwan’s port of Penghu, managed to catch the slithery, slimy green worm seen above. If you thought its body was eerie enough, just wait until its tongue — light pink and incredibly long — unfurls like some kind of monstrous silly string. Forget the tired horror movie sequels: This should be the subject of the next teen scream.
Although Wei is unsure of what exactly he pulled from the sea, some who have seen the video speculate it’s a ribbon worm. The name might sound familiar, as last just last month we saw a similarly terrifying nemertea with complex and very toxic features. Ribbon worms are carnivores that usually feed on clams and crustaceans, but technically they could probably slurp me and you into their bellies of green oblivion.
While this one isn’t particularly huge, some can be longer than a blue whale (!!), according to RT:
Slim and skinny, bodies flattened, ribbon worms are usually only a few millimeters wide. They tend to grow to about 20 centimeters long, but one particular specimen was estimated at 54 meters long. According to Smithsonian.com, ribbon worms vary vastly in shapes, colors and sizes, and can be as long as 60 meters – longer than a blue whale.
Some live in the open ocean, while most settle in seas to find hiding places on the bottom. About a dozen species inhabit freshwater, mainly in the tropics and subtropics, and a few choose to hang out on land in cool, damp places.