October 28, 2003

Earthworms are bad?

I'm begining to think that nothing is good for anything anymore because earthworms are bad for the environment. The weirdest thing -- they aren't even indiginous to the area. Did people bring earthworms on the Mayflower? I don't understand.

No one would argue that earthworms are cute. But to most people, they are benign and helpful creatures -- fertilizers of the garden, aerators of the soil, indispensable fishing companions. "Earthworms are truly nature's little farmers," goes one common view, this one on the Web site of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, "plowing the soil and fertilizing at the same time!"

But for a growing body of researchers, the traditional view of earthworms is giving way to a much more ominous one. Most earthworms common in the United States are exotic intruders from Europe, Asia or South America, these scientists point out.

The article goes on to say that earthworms are ruining areas around ponds, where fishers dump their extra worms. They also don't necessarily aeriate the soil, either. Sometimes, they actually compact it more.

Life is so complicated.

Posted by Julie Young at October 28, 2003 01:04 AM

Funny, I had the same thoughts when I read article about worms harming the Forest and not belonging there. Can it be true or a lot of bunk? Personally, if I dont get down to my pond to throw in a pound of fish food every few days, I count on the rain washing a few earthworms into it to keep my fish from starving. I know the Catfish cant get enough to eat otherwise. I won't go into the bluegill and bass or how many aquatic bugs are there for them etc. Trust me, they need the worms.
And many of the birds that visit us, Robins for instance, do little else but pull worms on the lawn. I guess that is a learned eating habit picked up only since the worms were mistakenly brought here and let loose.
I am sure there are worms we could live without. Such as round worms, pin worms, heart worms, whip worms, lung worms, bots, red worms and the list goes on. In fact, I spent a lot of money to rid my animals of the foregoing worms. But, I never would have thought that earthworms and NIGHT CRAWLERS belonged on that list. I have let Japanese beetle larvae and others, take over my lawn rather than use poisons which would kill the earthworms or bring their dieing bodies to the surface to be eaten by birds that would then also die. I guess I will soon read that its better to eradicate the worms at all costs, and even the loss of a few fish and birds will be worth the rewards we reap.
I wonder if they think the worms came in the 1700's, or was it in the 1500's ? Does it matter"
Maybe they mean it was thousands of years ago.
Heaven help us if the worms do to us what mice and rabbits did to Australia!!! I can see tiny little fences going up everywhere.......

Posted by: bubbanewf at September 4, 2004 06:13 PM
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