Eyes Under Puget Sound: Critter of the Month - Catworms

With their square heads and antennae that look a bit like pointy ears, it makes sense why the catworms, or marine segmented worms in the family Nephtyidae, would be named after cats. But their antennae are more like a cat’s sensory whiskers than ears, allowing them to feel their way through the mud as they crawl and burrow. Nephtyids are strong diggers, and can even hold their own in the water, rapidly wiggling their smooth, pale bodies in order to swim.



Meow we’re talking…about the catworms

Date Published

June 20, 2022
VIEW NOW: Eyes Under Puget Sound: Critter of the Month

Burgess, Dany; Washington State Department of Ecology


The Washington State Department of Ecology’s Marine Sediment Monitoring Team produces a monthly blog series, Eyes Under Puget Sound (EUPS), that focuses on different aspects of Puget Sound Sediment monitoring program work, including Critter of the Month. Articles from the series offer a peek into the life of Puget Sound's mud-dwelling invertebrates.

Keywords EUPS, Eyes Under Puget Sound, Critter of the Month, Puget Sound
About the Author: 
Dany Burgess is a benthic taxonomist with the Washington State Department of Ecology's Marine Sediment Monitoring Program.