Protula bispiralis

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Protula bispiralis
Red fanworm1.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Annelida
Class: Polychaeta
Order: Sabellida
Family: Serpulidae
Genus: Protula
Species: P. bispiralis
Binomial name
Protula bispiralis
(Savigny, 1822)[1]

Protula bispiralis, commonly known as the red fanworm or as a mopworm, is a species of marine polychaete worm in the family Serpulidae.[1]


Red fanworms have bodies which grow to 65mm in a tube of up to 10mm in diameter. They are lovely fanworms, having a white shell-like tube and two bright orange-red spirals of feathery branches protruding from it.[2]


These animals are found off the southern African coast from Cape Point to Durban, subtidally and to at least 25m.[2]


These animals grow under boulders or crevices, and are often seen on vertical rock faces. They use their feeding crowns to catch microplankton.[2]


The following species are synonyms of Protula bispiralis:[1]

  • Protula (Philippiprotula) magnifica Straughan, 1967 (subjective synonym)
  • Protula magnifica Straughan, 1967 (subjective synonym)
  • Serpula (Spiramella) bispiralis Savigny, 1822 (objective synonym)
  • Serpula bispiralis Savigny, 1822 (objective synonym)
  • Spiramella bispiralis (Savigny, 1822) (objective synonym)


  1. ^ a b c accessed 28 October 2013
  2. ^ a b c Branch, G.M., Branch, M.L, Griffiths, C.L. and Beckley, L.E. 2010. Two Oceans: a guide to the marine life of southern Africa ISBN 978-1-77007-772-0