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New Species of Worms Found To Release "Bombs"

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the take-that-and-that dept.

Education 104

caffiend666 writes "A newly found deep ocean worm 'can cast off green glowing body parts, a move scientists think may be a defensive effort to confuse attackers. Researchers have dubbed the newly discovered critters "green bombers." ... The first of the new species has been given the scientific name Swima bombiviridis. ... [T]he worms are able to regenerate the body parts.' So, it's a naturally occurring animal that rips off its arms and throws them, and we're not talking about a game from ID Software?"

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104 comments

I bomb too (4, Funny)

SoupGuru (723634) | more than 4 years ago | (#29148823)

I too use a type of bomb that can repel attackers. Mine doesn't confuse visually, though... it's more of an olfactory experience.

Re:I bomb too (4, Funny)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149073)

Mine doesn't confuse visually, though... it's more of an olfactory experience.

Ah, I see you have yet to learn the rest of the somewhat dangerous Furious Bomb of Distraction Technique.

First you must gather your Chi within yourself.
Then you must expel your Chi forcefully in a directed blast.
This is the Basic Furious Bomb of Distraction.

Only the True Master can realize the full potential of the Advanced Furious Bomb of Distraction.
After gathering your Chi, you must light a match and hold it in front of the Badger Den.
Then, and only then, can you expel your Chi in a blue-flamed spectacle of diversion, thus giving a visual impact to your olfactory experience.

Re:I bomb too (-1, Offtopic)

ioshhdflwuegfh (1067182) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149267)

Mine doesn't confuse visually, though... it's more of an olfactory experience.

Ah, I see you have yet to learn the rest of the somewhat dangerous Furious Bomb of Distraction Technique.

First you must gather your Chi within yourself. Then you must expel your Chi forcefully in a directed blast. This is the Basic Furious Bomb of Distraction.

Only the True Master can realize the full potential of the Advanced Furious Bomb of Distraction. After gathering your Chi, you must light a match and hold it in front of the Badger Den. Then, and only then, can you expel your Chi in a blue-flamed spectacle of diversion, thus giving a visual impact to your olfactory experience.

Let me hazard a guess here: you two are talking about farting, no?

Re:I bomb too (3, Funny)

solafide (845228) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149475)

No.

Re:I bomb too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29149629)

gross and where was your mind at

Re:I bomb too (1)

shirotakaaki (1613791) | more than 4 years ago | (#29151743)

Ah, I see you have yet to learn the rest of the somewhat dangerous Furious Bomb of Distraction Technique. First you must gather your Chi within yourself. Then you must expel your Chi forcefully in a directed blast. This is the Basic Furious Bomb of Distraction. Only the True Master can realize the full potential of the Advanced Furious Bomb of Distraction.

Ah yes. Everyone cowers to the F-bomb!

Re:I bomb too (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149179)

Mine doesn't confuse visually, though... it's more of an olfactory experience.

I'm sure after that trip to the Taco Bell, you'll get a few watery eyes in the room.

Re:I bomb too (2, Funny)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149789)

Taco bell? In some parts of the country, there is a place called White Castles. [whitecastle.com] And let me tell you, they don't call them slyders for nothing.

Re:I bomb too (5, Funny)

superslacker87 (998043) | more than 4 years ago | (#29150691)

Taco bell? In some parts of the country, there is a place called White Castles. [whitecastle.com] And let me tell you, they don't call them slyders for nothing.

I make it a general rule to avoid eating something that smells the same going in as it does going out.

Re:I bomb too (2)

Mikkeles (698461) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149513)

... it's more of an olfactory experience.

That's for the benefit of the deaf.

Re:I bomb too (2, Informative)

wastedlife (1319259) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149771)

Mine doesn't confuse visually, though... it's more of an olfactory experience.

That's for the benefit of the deaf.

Blind deaf people?

Re:I bomb too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29154085)

I too use a type of bomb that can repel attackers.

Why is this kind of thing news? Holothurians (sea slugs) are well-known for their aility to eject their intestines out their anus to confuse attackers. Then they grow a new set of guts.

What is this, Harry Potter? (5, Funny)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | more than 4 years ago | (#29148857)

The first of the new species has been given the scientific name Swima bombiviridis.

Subsequently, the entire scientific community got together to call the researchers and tell them they're not allowed to name any new species, ever. This was not the first time such had happened. Ever since the 2007 Sunken-Eyed Lemur was given the scientific name masturbatus furious the scientific community has been tightening the leash on allowing researchers to label their discoveries.

Re:What is this, Harry Potter? (1)

Annwvyn (1611587) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149071)

I agree... I think they come up with these names while 'celebrating' their new discovery. "...having promiscuous sex with many anonymous partners while experimenting with mind-expanding drugs in a consequence-free environment..." - Austin Powers

Re:What is this, Harry Potter? (-1, Troll)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149185)

Really?

Protip: In most parts of the world, nobody cares what you English-speakers think something sounds like.

Really.

I think I am a fairly good English speaker, for it being my third language. And I still don't see what you object to.
So it is you rather than them, who has that specific mindset, isn't it? ;)

Re:What is this, Harry Potter? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149345)

You need to put a 'native' or something in your second paragraph, you can't simultaneously exclude yourself from and include yourself in the same general group.

Re:What is this, Harry Potter? (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149705)

Did you miss the joke, are you trolling, or do you simply think people shouldn't tell jokes unless they're properly screened for international appeal?

Re:What is this, Harry Potter? (4, Funny)

florescent_beige (608235) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149395)

...Sunken-Eyed Lemur...scientific name masturbatus furious...

They have a scientific name for /. readers?

Re:Yes, they do... (1)

sourICE (1480471) | more than 4 years ago | (#29153297)

They have a scientific name for /. readers?

Emptious-Numerator Divided-Dottus.

Sometimes referred to simply as Divided-Dottus or the symbols '/.'.

Re:What is this, Harry Potter? (1, Funny)

jeffshoaf (611794) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149495)

Ever since the 2007 Sunken-Eyed Lemur was given the scientific name masturbatus furious the scientific community has been tightening the leash on allowing researchers to label their discoveries.

But I thought that was the scientific name for /. readers...

ISLAM (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29148887)

Another article about Muslims

Biology! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29148923)

Our understanding to the biodiversity on Earth is limited and biased, hopefully we can discover more about this amazing place before any natural or artificial catastrophic event that would create yet another genetic bottleneck. Not that life won't go on living, but the subsequent environment will certainly not pleasant for human beings.

Yeah, arm-bombs are okay I guess (4, Funny)

Itninja (937614) | more than 4 years ago | (#29148929)

But I prefer worms [wikipedia.org] that throw banana bombs, super sheep, and can wield a shotgun.

Re:Yeah, arm-bombs are okay I guess (3, Funny)

the_fat_kid (1094399) | more than 4 years ago | (#29148969)

"You'll regret that!"

Re:Yeah, arm-bombs are okay I guess (1)

Annwvyn (1611587) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149119)

Heheh... Perfect. That makes me miss that game... Though I had my team set in Polish.

Re:Yeah, arm-bombs are okay I guess (2, Funny)

Itninja (937614) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149587)

Been playing a lot of Worms 2: Armageddon on XBLA lately. It's pretty fun but I miss being able to load my own voice packs like I could on a PC. Having all my worms sounding like Chris Farley was the best.

Re:Yeah, arm-bombs are okay I guess (1)

nickyj (142376) | more than 4 years ago | (#29150879)

Oh man I remember those days, we used South Park voices (don't kick the baby), Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and we even made our recorded voices while playing Worms as some voice packs for the game which is hilarious after drinking a bottle of vodka while playing.

Those were the days.

Some humans do this too... (1)

tacarat (696339) | more than 4 years ago | (#29148971)

Mind you, they need a knife, but a penis can be thrown at pursuers... once. Well, unless you have a symbiotic relationship with some surgeons.

Obliged (1)

f00dif00 (769342) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149031)

I too welcome our bomb-releasing bio-luminescent worm overlords.

Re:Obliged (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 4 years ago | (#29152909)

Thanks, one comment we really needs. So far, I have found one comment not intending to be funny, this is what slashdot has turned into? A bunch of unfunny people rehashing memes?

Where does the bomb part come in? (5, Informative)

BForrester (946915) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149059)

"Bomb" is a bit of a misnomer. This is more of a flare/chaff countermeasure.

Call it biological countermeasures or BCM if you need an accurate and succinct term for generating buzz.

Re:Where does the bomb part come in? (4, Informative)

Minwee (522556) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149473)

Call it biological countermeasures or BCM if you need an accurate and succinct term for generating buzz.

The danger in that is that the media will pick it up and call it "Biological BCM Counter Measures".

worms with arms? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29149089)

isn't that the real story here?

Is the new part that it glows? (2, Informative)

electricprof (1410233) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149107)

I know that it's also a new type of deep sea swimming worm but is the really sexy part that it glows? The article also points out that several other ocean creatures drop off or "throw" body parts, but I think they don't glow. Squids can drop off an arm and I think sea cucumbers can spit out something from their gut. Of course, many lizards can also break off their tail. I guess the real question is whether humans should develop glowing detachable body parts ...

Re:Is the new part that it glows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29149135)

You mean there's a question?

Re:Is the new part that it glows? (1)

Xtifr (1323) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149177)

That was the first thing I wanted to ask, but I'm also confused about the worm-with-arms part. I suppose that if it's going to tear off parts of its body to distract pursuers, a part that it doesn't have would be the least painful and easiest to regenerate--but surely also the least effective?

I freely admit that I didn't RTFA, but with a summary this bad, I can't tell if I'm even interested in R-ing TFA, so it's a tough call. :)

Re:Is the new part that it glows? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149617)

I guess the real question is whether humans should develop glowing detachable body parts

We have. They're called "clothes".

What's new? (1)

WoOS (28173) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149123)

Lizards do it with their (continuing to wiggle) tail if they flee an enemy. So what's the excitement with this?

Re:What's new? (1)

holmstar (1388267) | more than 4 years ago | (#29150289)

Yeah, Have you ever seen it in person? It is really bizarre. I scared a lizard into dropping its tail in my backyard once (inadvertently). After watching the tail myself for a minute or two, I picked it up and freaked out the neighbor lady with it. :-)

It's not a bomb! It's a DECOY! (3, Insightful)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149129)

Like with fighter jets.

It lights. It does not explode!

But how are you going to get the hype machine going, to for once in your desperate life get some attention, right caffiend666?

Obligatory Comment (0)

danger42 (302987) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149183)

I, for one, welcome our new deep-ocean dwelling, bomb-releasing overlords.

Re:Obligatory Comment (0)

CTalkobt (81900) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149247)

>> I, for one, welcome our new deep ocean dwelling, bomb-releasing overlords. Good! - Just for bringing up that meme I'll hold your head under-water for a long time so you can greet them.

Re:Obligatory Comment (1)

omnichad (1198475) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149893)

With your mile-long arms. They live pretty far down.

Re:Obligatory Comment (1)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 4 years ago | (#29151407)

Due to San Diego's recent water treatment discussion I began to think more about the natural ecosystem involved. Sea worms do exist but often at extraordinary depth and habitate inside of tubes which they build or secrete. They are a worm accustomed to and evolved within a highly saline environment. Earthworms, freshwater worms, do not have this limitation of being localized to a tube.

So what if the real problem that we have in San Diego, with the smell emanating from that section of the ocean, is all of the sewage that has been pumped there has eventually realized a colony of worms which resemble earthworms--no tubes--and have adapted to live in that saline environment. Imagine if someone were to take a camera and a light there and find it nothing but a churning mass of billions of swarming worms from the sewage outlet? The putrid excrement from those earthworms that have adapted to live in the sewage on the bottom of the ocean floor is fouling the water, buiding up to maximum concentration in the water, and off-gassing from the surface.

Delicious.

Odd Evolutionary Links? (3, Interesting)

sonnejw0 (1114901) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149209)

What seems most interesting about this discovery is any possible evolutionary links. The common yard lizard in the southern USA (Florida, Texas, 'Bama, Georgia) loses its tail when attacked. Some starfish will break off a limb as a decoy. Many other examples across the phyla, kingdoms and classes.

Has the ability to lose a limb and regenerate evolved multiple times? Is this an evolutionarily ancient and common ability that humans have lost? Or these species linked on some crooked branch and our tree description is just totally screwed up?

I think those are the real questions this article raises.

Re:Odd Evolutionary Links? (1)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149311)

Our body still likely tries to do it, but we end up with a tumor instead. Likely due to how complex we are compared to your examples.

Re:Odd Evolutionary Links? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29149423)

Yes, it is a very interesting find.

I always wondered why more animals hadn't developed such defences like this, actually.
But i guess it would have taken some interesting interactions for evolution to have come up with such an ability.
And yet, if evolution wasn't so "me-centric", it would probably be more commonplace.
Decoy limbs are such an amazing ability to have in the wild. And when you consider a lot of animals are known to be perform deceptive actions, even stranger that such a thing hasn't popped up more.

And there are even more interesting things that come from such an ability.
Just for a moment, imagine a cow that could "shed" off a piece of meat. (genetically engineered obviously)
Instantly we have a whole new market of renewable meat producers without the need to kill the animals.
I wonder how vegetarians would react to this. (not vegans, we all know they are pissy about anything, hypocrites)

Re:Odd Evolutionary Links? (2, Interesting)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149737)

I believe there is a tribe in africa that harvests a strip of fat/meat from a anesthetized cow and stitches it back together. I learned this through non-internet related sources, so I can't be arsed to hunt down a reference.

Re:Odd Evolutionary Links? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29151999)

wtf? how is that a troll?

the name.. (1)

doti (966971) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149409)

Sorry, but you wrote that name wrong. It's "id Sowftware".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Id_software#Company_name [wikipedia.org]

Re:the name.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29149767)

No. No it's not.

Re:the name.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29153285)

No, we're very sure it's not "id Sowftware".
Nothing to see here, move along.

id software files patent suit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29149471)

id software today filed a patent infringement suit in Texas against the worms.

They look so cute! (1)

greymond (539980) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149551)

I want to get one and hug and love it and squeeze it until it throws all it's legs at me :D

I Coulda sworn... (1)

DigitalSorceress (156609) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149641)

I coulda sworn that I heard something like this about some glowie aquatic doomahickie before.

In that case, the defense mechanism was all about getting loads of brightly glowing goo stuck to the attacker... I guess in the hope that "There's always a bigger fish"

Either that, or it's just an anti-shoplifting mechanism gone horribly wrong.

Re:I Coulda sworn... (1)

OrangeMonkey11 (1553753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149965)

I believe it was on Blue Planet, they shown a shrimp like creature from the deep that shoots a glowing decoy in the opposite direction from it's travel to distract predator while it's makes a run for it. And I think there is also a species of squid that does the same thing

You know, (2, Funny)

Dremth (1440207) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149697)

Those are actually antlion larvae. If you eat those green things it will actually cure any of your ailments and make you feel absolutely terrific.

Neat, but don't sea cucumbers do something similar (4, Informative)

Koreantoast (527520) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149749)

While this is an interesting new creature, this ability is hardly something new. Sea cucumbers after all are already known for its ability to fire off select internal organs at predators as a distraction so they can flee...

Re:Neat, but don't sea cucumbers do something simi (1)

HeedlessYouth (685980) | more than 4 years ago | (#29149945)

Yes - sea cucumbers puke their guts out, literally. However, I think the term "flee" is a little strong for a creature that tops out at 2 meters per minute.

Re:Neat, but don't sea cucumbers do something simi (2, Interesting)

zerobytes (1607393) | more than 4 years ago | (#29150163)

so they can flee...

Have you ever seen a fleeing sea cucumber? That must be SOME organ that they jetison if it keeps a predator busy for that long...

Re:Neat, but don't sea cucumbers do something simi (1)

minorgroove (1278070) | more than 4 years ago | (#29153087)

A lot of creatures in the ocean do that, usually to startle or distract whatever is chasing them. That wasn't what was so special about it. Most luminous organisms in the ocean glow blue; these glow green, and are rare in that respect (at least in the ocean, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxfire_(bioluminescence) [wikipedia.org] ). The original publication ( http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/325/5943/964 [sciencemag.org] ) was only claiming that they found several new species in the deep sea that were unrelated to known organisms. Of course, they have this media-friendly property that they release glowing 'bombs'.

Also, yes, whoever sees it first gets to name it - whatever they want. Obviously this can lead to much silliness.

Bombs? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29150101)

Green glowing body parts being called bombs? Are these researchers in any way related to the police officers involved in the Boston bomb scare of '07?

wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29150419)

that was the most disappointing paragraph below the coolest headline ever.

i think i want nature to find a way to knock us down on the food chain before we find a way to do that haha. organic landmine-laying giant toxic worms could be the start of a new evolutionary trend. i mean, i'd fuck those worms up but...you never know what their grandchildren would look like....

Worms these days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29150991)

Back in my day, we didn't allow our worms to have limbs.

What's next? Monkeys without tails?

I didn't get the memo... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29151349)

When did worms start having limbs?

Science is cool! (1)

nature_geek (1280632) | more than 4 years ago | (#29151911)

As a scientist currently working on a NOAA research ship, my first reaction to this article was essentially: wow that is neat, we find so much cool stuff when we actually look for it! Our ship uses high resolution bathymetric SONAR, and we make discoveries every day on the sea floor that no one ever knew existed. And we regularly find things that help to explain other phenomena of the oceans, bays, and estuaries. The sad part is that science (speaking from an American perspective here) is relatively poorly funded or even understood by the vast majority of American citizens. I hope that in the near future, institutes like Scripps and agencies like NOAA will received better funding so that we can continue making great discoveries like these worms and show people that science is cool! There is lots and lots of exploring to do in the ocean.
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