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Posted by on Sep 20, 2015 in Tell Me Why |

What Do Earthworms Eat?

What Do Earthworms Eat?

Earthworms eat bits of leaves and decaying plant matter in the soil. An earthworm actually eats its way right through the ground, so it makes a burrow and gets food at the same time. It swallows the soil in its path and digests the decaying plant matter that the soil contains.

At night, the worm may put its head out of its burrow to find bits of leaves. It pulls these back into its burrow to eat. When the leaf softens a little they pull off small bits to munch on. The soil and waste pass through the worm’s long body and are left on the ground in little heaps called “castings.” Earthworms’ castings help to enrich the soil.

Animal manure in the soil is an important food source for earthworm. It eats living organisms such as nematodes, protozoans, rotifers, bacteria, fungi too. Earthworms will also feed on the decomposing remains of other animals. They can consume up to one third of their own body weight in a day.

Content for this question contributed by Rebecca Anderson, resident of Springfield, Western New England, Hampden County, Massachusetts, USA