This Is Nuts: Thousands Of 'Penis Fish' Cover Every Inch Of Californian Beach After Storm


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This Is Nuts: Thousands Of 'Penis Fish' Cover Every Inch Of Californian Beach After Storm

Guys, NSFW ya.

The deep sea is a very strange place.

There are probably hundreds (thousands?) of rare and even undiscovered fish species in the ocean.

And if it wasn't because of a freak storm, we probably would not have heard of the 'penis fish'.

A victim of circumstance

On Monday, thousands of a species of marine worms dubbed the 'penis fish' because of its appearance appeared on Drakes Beach, California after a strong winter storm exposed them.

News site CNN reported that wildlife enthusiast David Ford stumbled upon the scene. He then sent the surreal images to a local science publication called the Bay Nature Magazine.

SHOOK 😳 Thousands of these marine worms—called fat innkeeper worms, or “penis fish”—were found on Drake’s Beach last week! These phallic organisms are quite common along the West coast of North America, but they spend their whole lives in U-shaped burrows under the sand, so few beachgoers are aware of their existence. ⛈🌊 A recent storm in Northern California brought strong waves that washed away several feet of sand from the intertidal zone, leaving all these fat innkeeper worms exposed on the surface. 🏖 Next time you go to the beach, just think about the hundreds of 10-inch, pink sausages wiggling around just a few feet under the sand. 🙃 . . Get the full story in our new #AsktheNaturalist with @california_natural_history via link in bio! (📸: Beach photo courtesy David Ford; Worm photo by Kate Montana via iNaturalist)

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The creatures, known as inkeeper worms, are almost exclusively found in California and can live their whole lives underground.

Biologist Ivan Parr told the news portal that the species, which has been calling Earth their home for at least 300 million years, have no reason to surface and the recent sighting of them is extremely rare.

However, the powerful storms that hit Drakes Beach late November are likely the reasons why the inkeeper worms were washed ashore.

What are they exactly?

Like we mentioned above, the inkeeper worms can live underground their whole lives.

The reason they are called inkeeper worms is because they allow smaller creatures such as the tiny arrow goby fish, clams and pea crabs to share their burrows without any conflict.

NSFW alert, guys!
So, how do they eat if they don't come up to the surface? Well, they cast a mucousy net to catch food.

They also reproduce in their burrows, so you could say that the innkeeper worms are a...private species (geddit?).

Despite its totally haram appearance, they are considered a culinary delicacy in South Korea.

The more you know, right?

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