Life of an Earthworm

from birth to dissection

Lumbricus terrestris

Earthworms are tubular segmented animals. They belong to the Animalia kingdom under the phylum Annelida. They are in the Oligochaeta class, and Megadrilacea order. Earthworms produce both sperm and eggs; which makes them hermaphrodites. Earthworms, which usually live in soil, eat dead and alive organic matter.

The earthworms digestive system runs the entire length of it's body. The double transport system is composed of coelomic fluid that moves with a fluid filled body cavity, the coelom, in a closed blood circulatory system. It has central and peripheral nervous systems.


The purpose of studying and dissecting an earthworm is to learn more about segmented worms. In dissecting the worm we identified internal and external anatomy.


Taxonomy of the earthworm

Scientific name: Lumbrucis terrestris

•Kingdom: Animalia

•Phylum: Annelida

•Class: Clitellata

•Order: Haplotaxida

•Family: Lambricicdae

•Genus: Lumbricus

•Species: Terrestris

Digestive System: How to Eat Like an Earthworm

The food particles pass from the mouth to the pharynx where they are lubricated with mucus secretions. They then pass easily through the esophagus, and calcium carbonate is added to them. The food is then temporarily stored in the crop while it mixes together. From the crop it moves to the gizzard. The gizzard reduces the particles to a thick paste. That mixture is then sent to the intestine. Bacteria in the intestine then eats the mixture and releases nutrients and minerals to the worm. When the soil particles and undigested matter reach the end of the intestine they pass through the anus.
Earthworm eating leaf stem. SEE "Nightcrawler science videos clips"
Works Cited

Zannr, Christi. "Earthworms and Digestion." HubPages. N.p., 18 Mar. 2008. Web. 10 Apr. 2014.

Walker, Adele. "Planet Earth Online." Earthworms Show Evolution in Action. N.p., 28 May 2010. Web. 10 Apr. 2014.

"Taxonomy - Earthworms." Taxonomy - Earthworms. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2014.

"All About Birds." American Robin, Identification,. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Apr. 2014.

"Niches within Earthworms' Habitat." Science Learning Hub RSS. N.p., 31 May 2012. Web. 10 Apr. 2014.