Tiny earthworms’ big impact

Invasive earthworms change North American landscapes, for better or worse

By Cecile LeBlanc, 14:54 PM November 9, 2011


Earthworms in a cup



Earthworms have many fans. In 1881, Charles Darwin — the father of evolutionary theory — wrote a whole book on earthworms. In it, he concluded that “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.”


Gardeners tend to like earthworms because they mix the soil, loosening it and moving nutrients around. Earthworms even shred leftover plant parts into smaller fragments eaten by mic...

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