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Earthworm

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Earthworm
Earthworm
Amynthas sp., a common Asian earthworm often cosmopolitan and introduced around the world
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Annelida
Class: Oligochaeta
Subclass: Haplotaxida
Order: Megadrilacea
Suborder: Lumbricina + Moniligastrida
NODC v. 8.0, 1996
Families
Acanthodrilidae
Ailoscolecidae
Almidae
Benhamiinae
Criodrilidae
Diplocardiinae
Eudrilidae
Exxidae
Glossoscolecidae
Hormogastridae
Kynotidae
Lumbricidae
Lutodrilidae
Megascolecidae
Microchaetidae
Moniligastridae
Ocnerodrilidae
Octochaetidae
Octochaetinae
Sparganophilidae
Tumakidae
An earthworm is a tube-shaped, segmented animal commonly found living in soil, that feeds on live and dead
organic matter. Its digestive system runs through the length of its body. It conducts respiration through its skin. An
earthworm has a double transport system composed of coelomic fluid that moves within the fluid-filled coelom and a
simple, closed blood circulatory system. It has a central and a peripheral nervous system. The central nervous system
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consists of two ganglia above the mouth, one on either side, connected to a nerve cord running back along its length
to motor neurons and sensory cells in each segment. Large numbers of chemoreceptors are concentrated near its
mouth. Circumferential and longitudinal muscles on the periphery of each segment enable the worm to move.
Similar sets of muscles line the gut, and their actions move the digesting food toward the worm's anus.
Earthworms are hermaphroditeseach individual carries both male and female sex organs. As an invertebrate, it
lacks a skeleton, but it maintains its structure with fluid-filled coelom chambers that function as a hydrostatic
skeleton.
"Earthworm" is the common name for the largest members of Oligochaeta (which is either a class or a subclass
depending on the author) in the phylum Annelida. In classical systems, they were placed in the order Opisthopora, on
the basis of the male pores opening posterior to the female pores, though the internal male segments are anterior to
the female. Theoretical cladistic studies have placed them, instead, in the suborder Lumbricina of the order
Haplotaxida, but this may again soon change. Folk names for the earthworm include "dew-worm", "rainworm",
"night crawler", and "angleworm" (due to its use as fishing bait).
Larger terrestrial earthworms are also called megadriles (or big worms), as opposed to the microdriles (or small
worms) in the semiaquatic families Tubificidae, Lumbriculidae, and Enchytraeidae, among others. The megadriles
are characterized by having a distinct clitellum (which is more extensive than that of microdriles) and a vascular
system with true capillaries.
Earthworms are far less abundant in disturbed environments and are typically active only if water is present.
Anatomy
Form and function
Depending on the species, an adult earthworm can be from 10mm (0.39in) long and 1mm (0.039in) wide to 3m
(9.8ft) long and over 25mm (0.98in) wide, but the typical Lumbricus terrestris grows to about 360mm (14in)
long.
[1]
From front to back, the basic shape of the earthworm is a cylindrical tube, divided into a series of segments that
compartmentalize the body. Grooves called "furrows" are generally
[2]
externally visible on the body demarking the
segments; dorsal pores and nephropores exude a fluid that moistens and protects the worm's surface. Except for the
mouth and anal segments, each segment carries bristle-like hairs called lateral setae
[3]
used to anchor parts of the
body during movement;
[4]
species may have four pairs of setae on each segment or more than eight sometimes
forming a complete circle of setae per segment.
[3]
Special ventral setae are used to anchor mating earthworms by
their penetration into the bodies of their mates.
Generally, within a species, the number of segments found is consistent across specimens, and individuals are born
with the number of segments they will have throughout their lives. The first body segment (segment number 1)
features both the earthworm's mouth and, overhanging the mouth, a fleshy lobe called the prostomium, which seals
the entrance when the worm is at rest, but is also used to feel and chemically sense the worm's surroundings. Some
species of earthworm can even use the prehensile prostomium to grab and drag items such as grasses and leaves into
their burrow.
An adult earthworm develops a belt-like glandular swelling, called the clitellum, which covers several segments
toward the front part of the animal. This is part of the reproductive system, that creates egg capsules. The posterior is
most commonly cylindrical like the rest of the body, but depending on the species, may also be quadrangular,
octagonal, trapezoidal, or flattened; the last segment is called the periproct. The earthworm's anus, a short vertical
slit, is found on this segment.
[3]
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The cross section of the body of an earthworm (Oligochaeta)
showing the disposition of the more important organs: the
body wall (w) consists of dermis, circular and longitudinal
muscles; the body cavity is divided by membranes (c) into a
series of chambers, in each of which opens the mouth of a
coiled nephridium (n); the axis of the cavity is occupied by the
intestine (i); above and below it is a longer blood vessel (v),
and below it is also the central nerve cord (nc)
The exterior of an individual segment is a thin cuticle over
skin, commonly pigmented red to brown, which has
specialized cells that secrete mucus over the cuticle to keep
the body moist and ease movement through soil. Under the
skin is a layer of nerve tissue, and two layers of musclesa
thin outer layer of circular muscle, and a much thicker inner
layer of longitudinal muscle.
[5]
Interior to the muscle layer is
a fluid-filled chamber called a coelom
[6]
that by its
pressurization provides structure to the worm's boneless
body. A structure called a nephridium removes metabolic
waste and expels it through pores on the sides; two or more
nephridia are found in most segments.
[7]
At the center of a
worm is the digestive tract, which runs straight through from
mouth to anus without coiling, and is flanked above and
below by blood vessels and the ventral nerve cord. The
segments are separated from each other by dividing walls
called septa
[8]
that are perforated, which allow the coelomic
fluid to pass between segments.
[9]
Many earthworms can eject coelomic fluid through pores in
the back in response to stress; Australian Didymogaster
sylvaticus (known as the "blue squirter earthworm") can squirt fluid as high as 30cm (12in).
[9]
Digestive system
The gut of the earthworm is a straight tube which extends from the worm's mouth to its anus. It is differentiated into
a buccal cavity (generally running through the first one or two segments of the earthworm), pharynx (running
generally about four segments in length), esophagus, crop, gizzard (usually) and intestine.
[10]
Food enters the mouth. The pharynx acts as a suction pump; its muscular walls draw in food. In the pharynx, the
pharyngeal glands secrete mucus. Food moves into the esophagus, where calcium (from the blood and ingested from
previous meals) is pumped in to maintain proper blood calcium levels in the blood and food pH. From there the food
passes into the crop and gizzard. In the gizzard, strong muscular contractions grind the food with the help of mineral
particles ingested along with the food. Once through the gizzard, food continues through the intestine for digestion.
The intestine secretes pepsin to digest proteins, amylase to digest polysaccharides, cellulase to digest cellulose, and
lipase to digest fats. Instead of being coiled like a mammalian intestine, an earthworm's intestine increases surface
area to increase nutrient absorption by having many folds running along its length. The intestine has its own pair of
muscle layers like the body, but in reverse orderan inner circular layer inside an outer longitudinal layer.
[11]
Circulatory system
The earthworm has a dual circulatory system in which both the coelomaic fluid and a closed circulatory system carry
the food, waste, and respiratory gasses. The closed circulatory system has five main blood vessels: the dorsal (top)
vessel, which runs above the digestive tract; the ventral (bottom) vessel, which runs below the digestive tract; the
subneural vessel, which runs below the ventral nerve cord; and two lateroneural vessels on either side of the nerve
cord.
[12]
The dorsal vessel moves the blood forward, while the other four longitudinal vessels carry the blood to the
rear. In segments six through 11, a pair of aortic arches rings the coelom and acts as hearts, pumping the blood to the
ventral vessel that acts as the aorta. The blood consists of ameboid cells and hemoglobin dissolved in the plasma.
The second circulatory system derives from the cells of the digestive system that line the coelom. As the digestive
cells become full, they release non-living cells of fat into the fluid-filled coelom, where they float freely but can pass
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through the walls separating each segment, moving food to other parts and assisting in wound healing.
Excretory system
The excretory system contains a pair of nephridia in every segment, except for the first three and the last ones. The
three types of nephridia are: integumentary, septal, and pharyngeal. The integumentary nephridia lie attached to the
inner side of the body wall in all segments except the first two. The septal nephridia are attached to both sides of the
septa behind the 15th segment. The pharyngeal nephridia are attached to fourth, fifth and sixth segments. The waste
in the coelom fluid from a forward segment is drawn in by the beating of cilia of the nephrostome. From there it is
carried through the septum (wall) where it forms a series of loops entwined by blood capillaries that also transfer
waste into the tubule of the nephrostome. The excretory wastes are then finally discharged through a pore on the
worm's side.
Respiration
Earthworms have no special respiratory organs. Gases are exchanged through the moist skin and capillaries, where
the oxygen is picked up by the hemoglobin dissolved in the blood plasma and carbon dioxide is released. Water, as
well as salts, can also be moved through the skin by active transport.
Reproduction
Earthworm reproduction
Earthworm cocoons from L. terrestris
Mating occurs on the surface, most often at night. Earthworms are
hermaphrodites, that is, they have both male and female sexual organs.
The sexual organs are located in segments 9 to 15. Earthworms have
one or two pairs of testes contained within sacs. The two or four pairs
of seminal vesicles produce, store and release the sperm via the male
pores. Ovaries and oviducts in segment 13 release eggs via female
pores on segment 14, while sperm is expelled from segment 15. One or
more pairs of spermathecae are present in segments 9 and 10
(depending on the species) which are internal sacs that receive and
store sperm from the other worm during copulation. As a result,
segment 15 of one worm exudes sperm into segments 9 and 10 with its
storage vesicles of its mate. Some species use external spermatophores
for sperm transfer.
Copulation and reproduction are separate processes in earthworms. The
mating pair overlap front ends ventrally and each exchanges sperm
with the other. The clitellum becomes very reddish to pinkish in color.
Some time after copulation, long after the worms have separated, the
clitellum (behind the spermathecae) secretes material which forms a
ring around the worm. The worm then backs out of the ring, and as it
does so, it injects its own eggs and the other worm's sperm into it. As
the worm slips out of the ring, the ends of the cocoon seal to form a vaguely lemon-shaped incubator (cocoon) in
which the embryonic worms develop. They emerge as small, but fully formed earthworms, but lack their sex
structures, which develop in about 60 to 90 days. They attain full size in about one year. Scientists predict that the
average lifespan under field conditions is four to eight years, still most
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An earthworm cocoon from L. rubellus
garden varieties live only one to two years. Several common
earthworm species are mostly parthenogenetic.
Regeneration
Earthworms have the ability to regenerate lost segments, but this
ability varies between species and depends on the extent of the
damage. Stephenson (1930) devoted a chapter of his monograph to this
topic, while G.E. Gates spent 20 years studying regeneration in a
variety of species, but because little interest was shown, Gates (1972)
only published a few of his findings that, nevertheless, show it is
theoretically possible to grow two whole worms from a bisected
specimen in certain species. Despite denial of this phenomenon by
some current experts,Wikipedia:Avoid weasel words Gatess reports included:
Eisenia fetida (Savigny, 1826) with head regeneration, in an anterior direction, possible at each intersegmental
level back to and including 23/24, while tails were regenerated at any levels behind 20/21, i.e., two worms may
grow from one.
Lumbricus terrestris Linnaeus, 1758 replacing anterior segments from as far back as 13/14 and 16/17 but tail
regeneration was never found.
Perionyx excavatus Perrier, 1872 readily regenerated lost parts of the body, in an anterior direction from as far
back as 17/18, and in a posterior direction as far forward as 20/21.
Lampito mauritii Kinberg, 1867 with regeneration in anterior direction at all levels back to 25/26 and tail
regeneration from 30/31; head regeneration was sometimes believed to be caused by internal amputation resulting
from Sarcophaga sp. larval infestation.
Criodrilus lacuum Hoffmeister, 1845 also has prodigious regenerative capacity with head regeneration from as
far back as 40/41.
An unidentified Tasmanian earthworm shown growing a second head has been reported.
Locomotion and importance to soil
Close up of an
earthworm in
garden soil
Earthworms travel underground by the means of waves of muscular contractions which
alternately shorten and lengthen the body. The shortened part is anchored to the surrounding
soil by tiny claw-like bristles (setae) set along its segmented length. In all the body segments
except the first, last and clitellum, there is a ring of S-shaped setae embedded in the epidermal
pit of each segment (perichaetine). The whole burrowing process is aided by the secretion of
lubricating mucus. Worms can make gurgling noises underground when disturbed as a result of
the their movement through their lubricated tunnels. They also work as biological "pistons"
forcing air through the tunnels as they move. Thus earthworm activity aerates and mixes the
soil, and is conducive to mineralization of nutrients and uptake of them by vegetation. Certain
species of earthworm come to the surface and graze on the higher concentrations of organic
matter present there, mixing it with the mineral soil. Because a high level of organic matter
mixing is associated with soil fertility, an abundance of earthworms is generally considered beneficial by the organic
gardener.
[citation needed]
In fact, as long ago as 1881 Charles Darwin wrote: "It may be doubted whether there are
many other animals which have played so important a part in the history of the world, as have these lowly organized
creatures."
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Benefits
The major benefits of earthworm activities to soil fertility can be summarized as:
Biological: In many soils, earthworms play a major role in the conversion of large pieces of organic matter into
rich humus, thus improving soil fertility. This is achieved by the worm's actions of pulling below the surface,
deposited organic matter such as leaf fall or manure, either for food or to plug its burrow. Once in the burrow, the
worm will shred the leaf and partially digest it and mingle it with the earth. Worm casts (see below) can contain
40% more humus than the top 9" (23cm) of soil in which the worm is living.
Faeces in form of casts
Chemical: In addition to dead organic matter, the earthworm also
ingests any other soil particles that are small enoughincluding
sand grains up to 1/20 of an inch (1.25mm)into its gizzard,
wherein those minute fragments of grit grind everything into a fine
paste which is then digested in the intestine. When the worm
excretes this in the form of casts, deposited on the surface or deeper
in the soil, minerals and plant nutrients are changed to an accessible
form for plants to use. Investigations in the United States show that
fresh earthworm casts are five times richer in available nitrogen,
seven times richer in available phosphates, and 11 times richer in
available potassium than the surrounding upper 6inches (150mm) of soil. In conditions where humus is plentiful,
the weight of casts produced may be greater than 4.5kg (10lb) per worm per year.
Physical. The earthworm's burrowing creates a multitude of channels through the soil and is of great value in
maintaining the soil structure, enabling processes of aeration and drainage. Permaculture co-founder Bill Mollison
points out that by sliding in their tunnels, earthworms "act as an innumerable army of pistons pumping air in and
out of the soils on a 24-hour cycle (more rapidly at night)". Thus, the earthworm not only creates passages for air
and water to traverse the soil, but also modifies the vital organic component that makes a soil healthy.(See
Bioturbation.) Earthworms promote the formation of nutrient-rich casts (globules of soil, stable in soil (mucus))
that have high soil aggregation and soil fertility and quality.
Earthworms accelerate nutrient cycling in the soil-plant system through fragmentation & mixing of plant debris -
physical grinding & chemical digestion. The earthworm's existence cannot be taken for granted. Dr. W. E. Shewell
Cooper observed "tremendous numerical differences between adjacent gardens", and worm populations are affected
by a host of environmental factors, many of which can be influenced by good management practices on the part of
the gardener or farmer.
Darwin estimated that arable land contains up to 53,000 worms per acre (13/m
2
), but more recent research from
Rothamsted Experimental Station has produced figures suggesting that even poor soil may support 250,000/acre
(62/m
2
), whilst rich fertile farmland may have up to 1,750,000/acre (432/m
2
), meaning that the weight of
earthworms beneath a farmer's soil could be greater than that of the livestock upon its surface.
Earthworms as an invasive species
From a total of around 6,000 species, only about 150 species are widely distributed around the world. These are the
peregrine or cosmopolitan earthworms.
Special habitats
While, as the name earthworm suggests, the main habitat of earthworms is in soil, the situation is more complicated
than that. The brandling worm Eisenia fetida lives in decaying plant matter and manure. Arctiostrotus
vancouverensis from Vancouver Island and the Olympic Peninsula is generally found in decaying conifer logs.
Aporrectodea limicola, Sparganophilus spp., and several others are found in mud in streams. Some species are
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arboreal, some aquatic and some euryhaline (salt-water tolerant) and littoral (living on the sea-shore, e.g. Pontodrilus
litoralis). Even in the soil species, special habitats, such as soils derived from serpentine, have an earthworm fauna
of their own.
Ecology
Earthworms are classified into three main ecophysiological categories: (1) leaf litter- or compost-dwelling worms
that are non burrowing, live at soil-litter interface, and eat decomposing OM (called Epigeic) e.g. Eisenia fetida; (2)
topsoil- or subsoil-dwelling worms that feed (on soil), burrow and cast within soil, creating horizontal burrows in
upper 10 30cm of soil (called Endogeics); and (3) worms that construct permanent deep vertical burrows which
they use to visit the surface to obtain plant material for food, such as leaves (called Anecic (meaning "reaching up")),
e.g. Lumbricus terrestris.
Permanent vertical burrow
Earthworm populations depend on both physical and chemical
properties of the soil, such as temperature, moisture, pH, salts,
aeration, and texture, as well as available food, and the ability of the
species to reproduce and disperse. One of the most important
environmental factors is pH, but earthworms vary in their preferences.
Most favor neutral to slightly acidic soils. However, Lumbricus
terrestris is still present in a pH of 5.4 and Dendrobaena octaedra at a
pH of 4.3 and some Megascolecidae are present in extremely acidic
humic soils. Soil pH may also influence the numbers of worms that go
into diapause. The more acidic the soil, the sooner worms go into
diapause, and remain in diapause the longest time at a pH of 6.4.
Ocypus olens trying to prey on Lumbricus sp.
Earthworms form the base of many food chains. They are preyed upon
by many species of birds (e.g. starlings, thrushes, gulls, crows,
European robins and American robins), snakes, mammals (e.g. bears,
foxes, hedgehogs, pigs, moles) and invertebrates (e.g. ground beetles
and other beetles, snails, slugs). Earthworms have many internal
parasites, including protozoa, platyhelminthes, and nematodes; they
can be found in the worms' blood, seminal vesicles, coelom, or
intestine, or in their cocoons.
The application of chemical fertilizers, sprays, and dusts are believed
to have a disastrous effect on earthworm populations
[citation needed]
.
Nitrogenous fertilizers tend to create acidic conditions, which are fatal
to the worms, and dead specimens are often found on the surface
following the application of substances such as DDT, lime sulphur, and
lead arsenate. In Australia, changes in farming practices such as the
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application of superphosphates on pastures and a switch from pastoral farming to arable farming had a devastating
effect on populations of the giant Gippsland earthworm, leading to their classification as a protected species.
The most reliable way to maintain or increase worm populations in the soil is to avoid the application of chemicals.
The addition of organic matter, preferably as a surface mulch, on a regular basis will provide them with their food
and nutrient requirements, and will create the optimum conditions of temperature and moisture that will stimulate
their activity.
Economic impact
Earthworms being raised at the La Chonita
Hacienda in Mexico
Various species of worms are used in vermiculture, the practice of
feeding organic waste to earthworms to decompose food waste. These
are usually Eisenia fetida (or its close relative Eisenia andrei) or the
Brandling worm, commonly known as the tiger worm or red wiggler.
They are distinct from soil-dwelling earthworms. In the tropics, the
African nightcrawler Eudrilus eugeniae and the Indian blue Perionyx
excavatus are used.
Earthworms are sold all over the world; the market is sizable.
According to Doug Collicut, "In 1980, 370 million worms were
exported from Canada, with a Canadian export value of $13 million
and an American retail value of $54 million."
Earthworms are also sold as food for human consumption. Noke, is a culinary term used by the Mori of New
Zealand, refers to earthworms which are considered delicacies for their chiefs.
Taxonomy and distribution
Within the world of taxonomy, the stable 'Classical System' of Michaelsen (1900) and Stephenson (1930) was
gradually eroded by the controversy over how to classify earthworms, such that Fender and McKey-Fender (1990)
went so far as to say, "The family-level classification of the megascolecid earthworms is in chaos." Over the years,
many scientists developed their own classification systems for earthworms, which led to confusion, and these
systems have been and still continue to be revised and updated. The classification system used here, developed by
Blakemore (2000), is a modern reversion to the Classical System that is historically proven and widely accepted.
Categorization of a megadrile earthworm into one of its taxonomic families under suborders Lumbricina and
Moniligastrida is based on such features as the makeup of the clitellum, the location and disposition of the sex
features (pores, prostatic glands, etc.), number of gizzards, and body shape. Currently, over 6,000 species of
terrestrial earthworms are named, as provided in a species name database, but the number of synonyms is unknown.
The families, with their known distributions or origins:
Acanthodrilidae (Gondwanan or Pangaean?)
Ailoscolecidae Pyrenees and southeast USA
Almidae tropical equatorial (South America, Africa, Indo-Asia)
Benhamiinae Ethiopian, Neotropical (a possible subfamily of Octochaetidae)
Criodrilidae southwestern Palaearctic: Europe, Middle East, Russia and Siberia to Pacific coast; Japan
(Biwadrilus); mainly aquatic
Diplocardiinae/-idae Gondwanan or Laurasian? (a subfamily of Acanthodrilidae)
Enchytraeidae cosmopolitan but uncommon in tropics (usually classed with Microdriles)
Eudrilidae Tropical Africa south of the Sahara
Exxidae Neotropical: Central America and Caribbean
Glossoscolecidae Neotropical: Central and South America, Caribbean
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Haplotaxidae cosmopolitan distribution (usually classed with Microdriles)
Hormogastridae Mediterranean
Kynotidae Malagasian: Madagascar
Lumbricidae Holarctic: North America, Europe, Middle East, Central Asia to Japan
Lutodrilidae Louisiana southeast USA
Megascolecidae (Pangaean?)
Microchaetidae Terrestrial in Africa especially South African grasslands
Moniligastridae Oriental and Indian subregion
Ocnerodrilidae Neotropics, Africa; India
Octochaetidae Australasian, Indian, Oriental, Ethiopian, Neotropical
Octochaetinae Australasian, Indian, Oriental (subfamily if Benhamiinae is accepted)
Sparganophilidae Nearctic, Neotropical: North and Central America
Tumakidae Colombia, South America
References
[1] [1] Blakemore 2012, p.xl.
[2] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, p.11.
[3] Sims & Gerard 1985, pp.3 6.
[4] Edwards & Bholen 1996, p.3.
[5] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, p.8-9.
[6] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, p.1.
[7] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, p.6.
[8] Sims & Gerard 1985, p.8.
[9] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, p.12.
[10] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, p.13.
[11] Edwards & Bohlen 1996, pp.13 15.
[12] Sims & Gerard 1985, p.10.
Referenced works
Blakemore, Robert J. (2012). Cosmopolitan Earthworms an Eco-Taxonomic Guide to the Peregrine Species of
the World. (5th Ed). Yokohama, Japan: VermEcology So(i)lutions.
Sims, Reginald William; Gerard, B (1985). Earthworms: Keys and Notes for the Identification and Study of the
Species. London: Published for The Linnean Society of London and the Estuarine and Brackish-Water Sciences
Association by E. J. Brill/Dr. W. Backhuys.
Edwards, Clive Arthur; Bohlen, Patrick J. (1996). Biology and Ecology of Earthworms, 3rd Ed. Springer.
Further reading
Edwards, Clive A., Bohlen, P.J. (Eds.) Biology and Ecology of Earthworms. Springer, 2005. 3rd edition.
Edwards, Clive A. (Ed.) Earthworm Ecology. Boca Raton: CRC Press, 2004. Second revised edition. ISBN
0-8493-1819-X
Lee, Keneth E. Earthworms: Their Ecology and Relationships with Soils and Land Use. Academic Press. Sydney,
1985. ISBN 0-12-440860-5
Stewart, Amy. The Earth Moved: On the Remarkable Achievements of Earthworms. Chapel Hill, N.C.: Algonquin
Books, 2004. ISBN 1-56512-337-9
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External links
General
Earthworm Digest (http:/ / www. wormdigest. org) information website and magazine
WormWatch Field guide to earthworms (http:/ / www. naturewatch. ca/ english/ wormwatch/ )
Earthworms as pests and otherwise (http:/ / digital. library. unt. edu/ permalink/ meta-dc-1514:1) hosted by the
UNT Government Documents Department (http:/ / digital. library. unt. edu/ browse/ department/ govdocs/ )
Academic
Infography about Earthworms (http:/ / www. infography. com/ content/ 370686832988. html)
Earthworm resources (http:/ / pedozoologia. uw. hu)
Opuscula Zoologica Budapest, online papers on earthworm taxonomy (http:/ / opuscula. elte. hu)
A Series of Searchable Texts on Earthworm Biodiversity, Ecology and Systematics from Various Regions of the
World (http:/ / www. annelida. net/ earthworm/ )maintained by Rob Blakemore, Ph.D., an earthworm
taxonomy specialist
Agriculture and ecology
Earthworm Information (http:/ / www. sarep. ucdavis. edu/ worms/ ) at University of California, Davis
Minnesota Invasive Earthworms (http:/ / www. dnr. state. mn. us/ invasives/ terrestrialanimals/ earthworms/
index. html) Minnesota DNR information on the negative impacts of earthworms
Worm farming
A multi-tiered worm farm (http:/ / working-worms. com/ content/ view/ 40/ 62/ ) A technical guide for
constructing a tiered worm farming system
How to Make a Worm Farm (http:/ / opentutorial. com/ index. php?title=Make_a_worm_farm) Good for
Composting and Fishing
For kids
Kids Discovery (http:/ / yucky. kids. discovery. com/ noflash/ worm/ pg000102. html)
BioKIDS Segmented worms (http:/ / www. biokids. umich. edu/ critters/ Annelida/ )
Article Sources and Contributors
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Article Sources and Contributors
Earthworm Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?oldid=590086963 Contributors: .snoopy., 123kizzy, 1984, 5 albert square, 52 Pickup, 6th Happiness, 8u)3, A little insignificant, A.
Parrot, A3RO, Abeg92, Abigail-II, Abrech, Adashiel, AdjustShift, Adrian J. Hunter, Aeonx, Aetas volat., Aff123a, Aguyed, Ahoerstemeier, Aitias, Ajaxkroon, Alan Liefting, Alansohn, Aldaron,
Aleenf1, AlexiusHoratius, Alphachimp, Amalthea, Amandajm, Amoore, Anaxial, Andycjp, Angilbas, Animum, Anlace, Anna Frodesiak, AnnaKucsma, Annablewellman, Antandrus, Antoni
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File:Earthworm - L. terrestris cocoons.jpg Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:Earthworm_-_L._terrestris_cocoons.jpg License: Public Domain Contributors: Clive A.
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