Feather-Duster (Fan-Worm) are segmented marine worm of the family „Sabellidae“. Currently, we know about 130 species in 29 genera. The name is also occasionally applied to members of the closely related polychaete families „Serpulidae“, „Pogonophora“ and „Phoronida“. Member of these families inhabit coral reefs of tropical and temperate oceans all around the globe.
Sabellids live in long tubes constructed of mud or sand cemented by mucus, whereas serpulids build tubes of calcareous materials. The epithet feather-duster refers to the multicoloured crown of finely divided tentacles that are attached in two groups, one on either side of the worm’s head. The worm extends the tentacles for feeding and breathing but quickly retracts them at the first sign of danger. While most feather dusters are about the size of a pencil lead, some feather duster worms in excess of two feet long with a dense tentacle crown four or more inches across are known in some temperate regions. The life cycle includes a free-living, microscopic larval stage that disperses from the parental site and metamorphoses into adult form.