Annelid Earthworm Facts

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Annelid earthworms are members of the phylum Annelida, which means "a little ring" in Latin. There are about 2,700 species of earthworms. Annelid earthworms are invertebrates, or lacking backbones.

Size

  • Adult Annelid earthworms range from less than 1/2 inch long to a record-breaking 22 feet in length. One giant earthworm species averages 54 inches.

Segmentation

  • Annelid earthworms have three body regions made up of little rings called segments. Each segment is divided from the others by an internal septa and consists of a fluid-filled cavity called a coelom.

Color

  • Most Annelid earthworms are red, brown or pink. Bluish-colored earthworms live in the Philippines, while the United Kingdom is home to a green earthworm species.

Eggs

  • Earthworms lay eggs within a tiny, hard cocoon. Eggs hatch as quickly as two weeks in warm weather and as long as three months in cold weather.

Chemoreceptors

  • Earthworm bodies are covered with chemoreceptors, which are minute-sense organs. Annelid earthworms use chemoreceptors to sense chemicals in the soil and to taste their food.

Fun Facts

  • More than 1 million earthworms can live in one acre of land. Charles Darwin studied earthworms for about 39 years.

References

  • Photo Credit Creative Commons
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