Wormstar

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Split off from the Gillstar, the Wormstar is a burrower which acts somewhat like an earthworm, feeding on detritus and turning soil as it goes. To support this lifestyle, it has a rather unprecedented change—it’s upside-down! Gravity made dragging a gill underneath a very risky task. Being upside-down places that gill on top, so it doesn’t drag any more than the left and right gills do. This does make the Wormstar’s waste disposal a bit messier, as the cloaca is now above its anal fingers, but the benefit for its gills outweighs it.

The Wormstar’s mouth is now directly connected to its “intestine”, which is more muscular and intestine-like than before. This allows it to gobble up loads of sand and detritus, which is also its primary digging method, and collect what nutrients it can before dumping it out the other end. Its cloaca is enlarged to help support this.

The Wormstar has also delayed the birth of its offspring. They are not born until after their arms have differentiated between tail and gill, as otherwise they would be unable to dig at birth—which would be very bad. This means that larvae are already bilateral at birth, rather than being radial at birth like most lagnodactyls; however, they still have a radially symmetric fetal stage.

The Wormstar is otherwise like its ancestor. It reproduces sexually by joining the tail-like anal arms with another individual using its tentacle-like anal fingers; it can filter-feed on microbes using its gills; and it eats by inverting its mouth, partially enveloping its target with it, and pulling it back in.