Can earthworms fly?

11 January 2009

Question

I was cleaning the roof of my garage, sweeping falling leaves and branches away. There was all this decomposing matter there that had reached critical mass that was making soil on the roof. As I cleaned it off I was surprised to find healthy earthworms in the soil. How did they make it up there?

Answer

Kat - This is an interesting one but my prime suspect in this case would be birds. There is some evidence that worms can crawl but I doubt that big earthworms can crawl that far. I reckon that a bird has got mud on its beak or is maybe carrying another earthworm that's got mud on it that's got tiny earthworm eggs and they've got deposited up there. It's a nice environment, it's nice and damp. If you've got soil, organic matter up there then those dropped worm cocoons, the eggs in a bundle have started to grow. I reckon they've been dropped up there by birds. Chris - I agree because when I was little I got into trouble with my parents for putting a worm in my brother's hair which I absolutely did not do. Because he reached into his hair and found a worm and got told off for it. Actually a bird had just gone over and I think a bird dropped the worm on my brother's head. I didn't do it honest.

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