Earthworm Dissection

By Natalia Salgado


The objective is that the students learned and observe the internal structure of the earthworm

Background Information

Scientific name: Lumbricina

Habitat: Soil

Predators: Birds, Snakes, Rodents, and Bugs

Prey: Deceased plants and animal matter

Niche: Primary

Ecological Adaptations: Ridges on skin

Dissection Pictures

Digestive System

The food that goes through the digestive system goes through four stages: ingestion, digestion, absorption, and excretion. Ingestion is when the earthworm swallows the food and sucks it into it's mouth. The digestion is when the food is made smaller into smaller molecules. The gizzard "chews" up the food into even smaller pieces, that is called mechanical digestion. Chemical digestion breaks down the larger pieces even more so that they can be absorbed by other cells. After going through these digestions we end up with molecules that are then absorbed from the gut into the cells, tissues and blood vessels of the earthworm. They then enter the circulatory system and are distributed all throughout the body. The food that can not be digested or used is eliminated. This is the earthworms poop and is called casts or feces.

Digestive system parts

Mouth- It sucks the food into the earthworms body. It is located on the anterior end of the worm

Pharynx- A muscle that "Vacuums" the food through the mouth

Oesophagus- The tube between the Pharynx and the Crop

Crop- A thin walled "storage" that holds the food for some time

Gizzard- A grinding organ that breaks down food by being squeezed and rolled around in the organ

Intestine/Gut- Thin walled structure in which most chemical digestion occurs

Intestine- A cylindrical tube in which most absorption of nutrients occurs in

Anus- A hole in where the Casts are disposed of

Extra Facts

Earth worms do not have eyes but instead have light and touch sensitive organs to know the level of light in an area and to feel vibrations from the ground

The longest earthworm was known to be 6 ft long

The rings around the earthworms are called annuli

On the annuli are small hairs that help the earthworm move

Want to teach you're kids about earthworms? This is a great way!

Sid the Science Kid-I Dig this Town

A Famous cartoon character that is an earthworm is Earthworm Jim