A new subspecies of worm that eats stone and excretes it as sand has been discovered by scientists at the bottom of a river in the Philippines.
The worms found looked to be helping itself to portions of carbonate limestone as part of their diet that is “a guaranteed route to rock-hard abs,” according to Sky News.
According to the report, the worms look to burrow holes in the rock and keep fragments of it in their gut to possibly help when they eat up a plankton or even extract more nutrients.
In a report published in the journal Proceedings Of The Royal Society, the researchers identified them as a type of shipworm, which were known for eating wood. They can cause damage to coastal structures such as piers, by using their shells into drilling the wood and its symbiotic bacteria in their gills help eat it.
The specimens found had a range of 5.5mm to 105.4mm in body length. They were collected from the Abatan River in the eastern Bohol.
The researchers also concluded that the worms could play a key role “in the creation of new ecosystems for other freshwater-dwellers.”