The Era of the Earthworm

Sam Golden- Earthworm Dissection- 4/4/14 - Vu PAP Bio 4th

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Lumbricus terrestris

-Earthworms are classified in Kingdom Anamalia (animals), Phylum Annelida (segmented worms), Class Clitellata (reproductive cocoon), Subclass Oligochaeta (terrestrial), Order Haplotaxida, and Family Lumbricidae .

-The term "worm" came from the Old Engilsh "wyrm", meaning "serpent" or "dragon". Earth (Old Engilsh "Eorthe") was later added to the front to signify that the worms lived inside the ground, or the "earth" so to speak.


-To explore the environment, life, and role of an earthworm.

-To analyze the anatomy of an earthworm.

Earthworms and Humans

Gardeners tend to like earthworms because they mix the soil, loosening it and moving nutrients around. Earthworms even shred leftover plant parts into smaller fragments eaten by microorganisms. In these ways, earthworms can improve and enrich the soil, allowing gardeners to raise certain crops/plants better.


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Earthworm System at a Glance: Digestive

1. Since an earthworm does not have teeth, bits of soil particles are used to help them “chew” their food.

2. Food particles pass from the mouth to the pharynx where the food is lubricated by mucus secretions (This makes it easier to pass along to the esophagus where calcium carbonate is added to the mixture)

3. Food passes along through the esophagus before ending up in the crop, where the food is temporarily stored and mixed together.

4. From the crop, the mixture enters the gizzard where the actual digestive process begins.

5. Glands in the walls of the gizzard add enzymes to the mixture, which aid in the chemical breakdown of the organic material.

6. The mixture is sent to the intestine. The intestine has bacteria that eat the food mixture, releasing various vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and proteins from the organic matter.

7. At the end of the intestine, the soil particles and undigested organic matter pass out of the worm’s body through the anus as waste.

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