flatworms text index | photo index
worms > Phylum Platyhelminthes > Class Turbellaria > Order Polycladida
Red-striped flatworm
Maritigrella virgulata*
Family Euryleptidae
updated Oct 2016

Where seen? Sometimes seen on some of our shores, among coral rubble usually at night on our Southern shores.

Features: 5-7cm long. Body is cream-white to beige with a pattern of fine black bars of unequal length along the edges with a thin broken orange or red line along the centre. It has a pair of pseudotentacles at the front made up of folded edges of the body.

What does it eat?
Maritigrella flatworms eat ascidians by sucking out individual animals with their tube-shaped pharynx (a part of the gut) that can be pushed out through the mouth to engulf the prey.

Pulau Semakau, Oct 09

Pulau Jong, Jul 07

Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on his blog.

*Tentative identification. Species are difficult to positively identify without close examination.
On this website, they are grouped by external features for convenience of display.

Red-striped flatworm on Singapore shores

Photos of Red-striped flatworm for free download from wildsingapore flickr

Distribution in Singapore on this wildsingapore flickr map

Little Sisters Island, Feb 15
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on his blog.

Pulau Jong, Apr 15
Photo shared by Neo Mei Lin on his blog.

St. John's Island, Sep 09
Photo shared by James Koh on his blog.

With grateful thanks to Leslie H. Harris of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County for comments on this worm and its identification.


  • Maritigrella virgulata on Encyclopedia of Life, LifeDesks, Marine Flatworms - Polycladida: Technical fact sheet.


  • Newman, Leslie and Lester Cannon. 2003. Marine Flatworms: The World of Polyclads. CSIRO Publishing. 97pp.
  • Kuiter, Rudie H and Helmut Debelius. 2009. World Atlas of Marine Fauna. IKAN-Unterwasserachiv. 723pp.
links | references | about | email Ria
Spot errors? Have a question? Want to share your sightings? email Ria I'll be glad to hear from you!
wildfactsheets website©ria tan 2008