Many benthic organism start its early life stage as a planktonic larvae. A veliger is the planktonic larva of many kinds of sea snails and freshwater snails, as well as most bivalve molluscs (clams) and tusk shells. These larvae happen to be free living and are often carried from one place to other through the water currents. They complete their larval stage in planktonic form before settling on the Benthos. We encountered a live veliger larvae doing active filter feeding in the water samples collected from the Chilika Lagoon. Water samples were collected through a plankton net.
This is the veliger larva of a gastropod mollusc seen to be filter feeding from the surrounding water. The fleshy part of the veliger is called velum through we can see water current passing in and out of it. The velum is also used as the swimming organ as well as for respiration. The velum contains ciliary bands which produce the currents.