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Common Name:


Scientific Name:

Lumbricus terrestris

Unique Qualities:

The earthworm is also called the night crawler and it has a long smooth body made up of rings called annuli. Worms help with the growth of plants by breaking down the humus (decaying matter in soil). The soil is loosened and mixed as the earthworm burrows underground. They do not have eyes or ears but are very sensitive to heat, light and touch.

Can be Seen:

The earthworm can be seen in all places of Canada except the northern territories and the prairie provinces.

Likes to Hang Out:

Earthworms almost completely live on land. They like to hang out in gardens, lawns, pasturelands and under logs. They are also seen in forests, riverbanks, streams, mud flats, woody peat, and in compost.

Likes to Eat:

When they burrow through the soil, earthworms eat the soil in their mouths. The soil isn’t very nutritious but in the soil are little microorganisms and bacteria that earthworms like to eat. The food goes through two digestive structures that process the food: the crop (stores the food) and the gizzard (which grinds up the food).


There are lots of earthworms across Canada and the world. A large population of earthworms in the soil is a good indication that the soil is healthy. Earthworms can sometimes live up to 10 years!

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