Chaetopterus variopedatus   Cuvier,  1827 (Marine Worm)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Polychaeta

Image copyrights: F. Pleijel

Size: Length 150-250 mm. by 15-25 mm.

Color: Greenish-yellow or whitish-yellow. Median region partly black. Phosphorescent.

The specific character are mainly those of the genus. It is very doubtful whether there is really more than one species, although many have been described, but the characters used to discriminate them are of very little value. Specimens exhibit a great deal of variation which is probably a result of frequent autotomy, followed by more or less complete regeneration; individual specimens also present an extensive range of variation, for instance, the number and size of the anterior segments vary to a very large extent, as also the length of the feet.

Synonym (s)
Chaetopterus variopedatus Fauvel, 1919
Chaetopterus variopedatus Fauvel, 1957
Chaetopterus variopedatus Gravier, 1905
Chaetopterus variopedatus Hartman, 1959
Chaetopterus variopedatus Hartman, 1974
Chaetopterus variopedatus Mohammad, 1972
Chaetopterus variopedatus var. djiboutie Gravier, 1906
Tricoelia variopedata Renier, 1804
Chaetopterus sarsi Boeck in Sars, 1860
Chaetopterus quatrefagesii Jourdain, 1868
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus sarsii Boeck in Sars, 1860
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus afer Quatrefages, 1866
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus antarcticus Kinberg, 1866
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus appendiculatus Grube, 1874
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus australis Quatrefages, 1866
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus brevis Lespes, 1872
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus capensis Stimpson, 1856
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus cautus Marenzeller, 1879
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus crosslandi Caullery, 1944
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus hamatus Schmarda, 1961
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus insignis Baird, 1864
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus kagosimensis Izuka, 1911
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus leuckarti Quatrefages, 1866
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus longimanus Crossland, 1904
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus longipes Crossland, 1904
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus luteus Stimpson, 1856
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus macropus Schmarda, 1861
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus norvegicus M. Sars, 1835
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus pergamentaceus Cuvier, 1827
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus takahashii Izuka, 1911
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus valencinii Quatrefages, 1866
(Subjective synonym)
Chaetopterus variopedatus macropus Schmarda, 1861
(Objective synonym)
Tricoelia variopedatus Renier, 1804

Common Name (s)
• Parchment Worm (English)
Economic Importance and Threats



• Red Sea
• Gulf of Aden
• Arabian Gulf
• Maharashtra, Thane-Mumbai Bay (Lat: 18.91) (Long: 72.83) INDIA (Record: 06/2000-09/2001) (Depth: -15 mts)
• Maharashtra, Mumbai (Lat: 18.91) (Long: 72.83) INDIA (Record: 06/2000-09/2001) (Depth: -8 mts)

Literature Source(s)
  • Eibye-Jacobson, D (Ed) (2002) Proceedings of the International Workshop on the Polychaetes of the Andaman Sea, Phuket Marine Biological Center, Department of Fisheries, Thailand, 3 June-27 August 1997 Phuket Marine Biological Center Special Publication no. 24 Phuket Marine Biological Center, Phuket, Thailand 424 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Wehe, T and Fiege, D (2002) Annotated checklist of the polychaete species of the seas surrounding the Arabian Peninsula: Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, Arabian Gulf Fauna of Arabia 19 7-238 Available at -
  • Hussain, SM Brief report on biodiversity in the coastal areas of Pakistan p 113
  • Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Available at -
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Swami, BS and Udhayakumar, M (2010) Seasonal influence on settlement, distribution and diversity of fouling organisms at Mumbai harbour Indian Journal of Marine Sciences National Institute of Science Communication And Information Resources, CSIR, New Delhi, India 39(1) 57-67 Available at - NIO,Goa
  • Fauvel, P (1953) The fauna of India including Pakistan, Ceylon, Burma and Malaya: Annelida, Polychaeta The Indian press ltd., Allahabad 507 pp Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2011-03-25

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