Key Stages 3/4 - What's For Dinner?
Explore the Sea Floor - What's For Dinner PDFs.

This activity aims to examine adaptations that marine worms (polycheates) have for feeding.

Questions to ask pupils:

What does the worm eat?

  • Does the worm eat meat (carnivore / omnivore)?
  • Does the worm eat mud (detritivore)?

Resources needed:

What does the worm eat - pupils resources

The correct answers can be found in the teachers resources section

Clues for pupils to look out for:

Carnivores / Omnivores:

Worms which eat meat are likely to be active, in order that they can catch prey items. Therefore they are likely to have well-developed locomotive structures in order to crawl or swim. They are also likely to have structures for sensing prey, such as eyes and antennae. They may also have large mouths and/or jaws to capture prey (these may be hidden however).


Animals which get their nutrients from ingesting mud or sand are likely to be less active. Therefore they may live in a tube, and their locomotive structures may be less well-developed. They may or may not have eyes or antennae. They may have gills, which can be seen due to their red colour.


  • Ask pupils to match the worm part names to the photographs
  • After outlining the clues to look out for (described above) ask pupils to decide which worms are carnivores/omnivores and those that are detritivores. Place one of the mud images onto the worms that are believed to be detritivores and a worm image onto the worms that are believed to be carnivore/omnivores.


Use the Explore the Sea Floor CD-ROM to investigate animals of the sea bed further and discover how scientists study this fascinating environment.