|Scale worm. Belly view; the edge of some scales on his back are just barely visible.|
|Licking his lips already|
|"Look what I found! Oh, this looks good!"|
These worms eat by everting their jaw some distance beyond the face, and biting down. I've watched them many times, but never actually seen the everted jaw. It all happens in a split second; the worm is there, looking at the food from a short distance away, then there's a moment of blur, and then all is as before, except that the food has moved.
This time, with the worm and his lunch so close to the glass, I set the camera down, focussed on the pellet, and tried to catch the action. The worm was biting at the edges of the pellet; it was too big for him to swallow. After each bite, he'd back off, rest a minute, and then, - snap! - take another bite.
Mostly, by the time my finger pressed the camera shutter, it was all over. I tried anticipating his moves, and finally got one blurry view of that speeding jaw.
A few more bites, and the worm retreated into his seaweed hidey hole, leaving the rest of the pellet for midnight snackers.