tube worm


: a worm that lives in a tube (as one composed of sand grains or calcium carbonate) : such as
: any of various polychaetes or oligochaetes

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web These nutrients are used by bacteria that live deep inside the tube worm's trophosome to synthesize a variety of organic compounds. Discover Magazine, 29 June 2010 Riftia pachyptila, more commonly known as the giant tube worm. Discover Magazine, 29 June 2010 The team hopes to replicate the tube worm’s unique photoprotein—or a protein linked to bioluminescence—to illuminate cancer cells during surgery. Rachael Lallensack, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 Dec. 2020 But not the marine parchment tube worm—these ocean swimmers produce a bright blue goo that stays aglow for anywhere from 16 to 72 hours. Rachael Lallensack, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 Dec. 2020 Amazing fish, shellfish, tube worms and other life forms live in these zones. Suzanne O'connell, The Conversation, 7 Oct. 2019 Seven-foot-long tube worms, ghostly white snailfish, and massive crustaceans all make their homes in the forbidding depths. Eva Botkin-kowacki, The Christian Science Monitor, 23 Aug. 2019 Dozens have responded to the park service post with guesses, including many who disagree with the tube worm theory. Mark Price, charlotteobserver, 4 June 2019 But many disagreed with the tube worm hypothesis, leaving their guesses in the post's more than 70 comments. Fox News, 5 June 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'tube worm.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1819, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tube worm was circa 1819

Dictionary Entries Near tube worm

Cite this Entry

“Tube worm.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition

tube worm

: a worm that lives in a tube (as one made of sand grains or calcium carbonate): as
: any of various land- or water-dwelling worms that are closely related to the earthworms
: any of a group of worms that may grow to be 9 feet (3 meters) long, are related to the earthworms, and live on the ocean floor near openings that give off very hot mineral-rich water

More from Merriam-Webster on tube worm

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