Chesapeake Bay Introduced Species Database


Teredo furcifera

Common name(s):
Forked Shipworm
Shipworms may look like worms with their long tubular bodies, but they are actually bivalves like clams. Instead of living in their shells, they use them to burrow into wood to create a home. This tropical species was first described in Indonesia in 1894 and is now widely distributed. Like many shipworms, it moved around the world in the hulls of wooden sailing ships. The first report of the Forked Shipworm on the East Coast was from North Carolina in the 1940s. Because it is so widespread, there is some uncertainty as to its introduced status south of Cape Hatteras. It was introduced into the Chesapeake Bay region in 1988 where it was discovered in submerged pine planks in Wachapreague VA. Although it is unlikely to survive winters in this region, it is one of several tropical species that is transported north by boats traveling up the coast. In 1960 it arrived in New York on the Bounty II, a wooden sailboat built for the movie ?Mutiny on the Bounty?, which had been in Tahiti.
Image courtesy of USGS.

Taxonomy:

Kingdom
Phylum
Class
Order
Family
Genus
Species
Animalia
Mollusca
Bivalvia
Myoida
Teredinidae
Teredo
Teredo furcifera


Synonymy:

Teredo australasiatica; Teredo bensoni; Teredo furcata; Teredo furcillatus; Teredo krappei; Teredo laciniata; Teredo parksi; Teredo parksi madrasensis


Potentially Misidentified As:

Teredo navalis; Teredo bartschi


Common Names:

Forked Shipworm


Comments:



This data was last modified on Wednesday, July 17th, 2013.
Databases Overview| Chesapeake Bay |