You might think that earthworms are ubiquitous, but they’re not supposed to be in a large part of the United States. After the last ice age, earthworms were supposed to be killed off in the northeast. However, today there are just as many earthworms there as there are in other areas where they survived. Earthworms invaded the area, and today pose a threat to the indigenous habitat. Jumping worms in particular might be changing the landscape in unknown ways.

Key Takeaways:

  • Science suggests that barring a few species that live off forest detritus and some wetland variants there should be no earthworms residing in the North American Great Plains.
  • Interestingly, worms have colonized all over the earth through no efforts of their own, but via unintended human intervention.
  • Whether by the transportation of plant life or by the use of dirt to ballast sea vessels, worms have been uninvited travelers on human transportation.

“Until about 10,000 years ago, a vast ice sheet covered the northern third of the North American continent.”

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