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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Thursday Thinking Green ~ Thoughts and Facts on the lowly Earthworm

“The plow is one of the most ancient and most valuable of man’s inventions; but long before he existed, the land was in fact regularly plowed and still continues to be thus plowed by earthworms. 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.” Charles Darwin

Earthworms:

- have been kept alive for 6 years, but in the wild probably live two years at the most;
- do not have lungs, breathe through their skin, and can live under water for a while;
- do not come to the surface during rain to escape drowning, but rather to find a mate since their mobility is much better on wet ground;
- lack eyes but are light sensitive;
- can detect the motion of a robin (that can hear the earthworm in its burrow);
- may survive being frozen if the freeze is not too rapid

Maintaining a healthy population of worms is easy.They need a moist, well-mulched habitat with plenty of decaying matter. Take care when turning the compost pile. A pile interior might contain dozens of worms, so try to relocate them to an area where they will have a good chance in which to burrow deeply. Worms are resilient, have a high reproduction rate, and can survive without us. But with just a little help they can be made to flourish. And you can forget about ever needing a rototiller.

3 comments:

LillyShayStyle said...

Worms are strange... I heard that if you chop a worm in half, both pieces will survive.....?

kim* said...

eeps ! worms!

The Great Ethan Allen said...

You forgot FISHING! Who needs to buy bait when they are in your yard.