Wonderful WorldWonderful World
ofof
Welcome to theWelcome to the
EarthwormsEarthworms
 Free-living, beneficialFree-living, beneficial
 Non - Parasitic!Non - Parasitic!
 ImproveImprove ...
““Intestines of the Earth”Intestines of the Earth”
- Aristotle- Aristotle
“Ecosystem Engineer”“Ecosystem Engineer”
- Lavel...
Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms
 ClassificationClassification
 Annelida (segmented worms)Annelida (segmented w...
Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms
 Number of Earthworm SpeciesNumber of Earthworm Species
±4,000 in the world±4,0...
Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms
 Life CycleLife Cycle
 Eudrilus eugeniaeEudrilus eugeniae (“African nighcrawle...
Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms
 Life SpanLife Span
 1-2 years in nature1-2 years in nature
 More than 10 yea...
Ecology ofEcology of EarthwormsEarthworms
 Depending on their feeding pattern,Depending on their feeding pattern,
earthwo...
Cultural Requirements ofCultural Requirements of
EarthwormsEarthworms Aeration (porous soil)Aeration (porous soil)
 Not ...
Wonderful  World Of Worms
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Wonderful World Of Worms

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PENRO CAPITOL SEMINAR

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Wonderful World Of Worms

  1. 1. Wonderful WorldWonderful World ofof Welcome to theWelcome to the
  2. 2. EarthwormsEarthworms  Free-living, beneficialFree-living, beneficial  Non - Parasitic!Non - Parasitic!  ImproveImprove soil structuresoil structure andand fertilityfertility  Enhance microbial activity that promotes plantEnhance microbial activity that promotes plant growth and healthgrowth and health  Serve as natural food for fish, birds andServe as natural food for fish, birds and mammalsmammals
  3. 3. ““Intestines of the Earth”Intestines of the Earth” - Aristotle- Aristotle “Ecosystem Engineer”“Ecosystem Engineer” - Lavelle et al.- Lavelle et al. “Angel in the Backyard”“Angel in the Backyard” - Chinese- Chinese (Source: Cuendet and Bieri, 1999)
  4. 4. Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms  ClassificationClassification  Annelida (segmented worms)Annelida (segmented worms)  Oligochaeta (few bristles)Oligochaeta (few bristles) (Source: Gaddie and Douglas, 1975)
  5. 5. Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms  Number of Earthworm SpeciesNumber of Earthworm Species ±4,000 in the world±4,000 in the world 400 > in the Philippines400 > in the Philippines  CharacteristicsCharacteristics  Breathe through their skinBreathe through their skin  Hermaphroditic (have both sex organs)Hermaphroditic (have both sex organs)  Feed on microorganisms (fungi and bacteria) in the soilFeed on microorganisms (fungi and bacteria) in the soil  Active at nightActive at night  Many are migratoryMany are migratory
  6. 6. Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms  Life CycleLife Cycle  Eudrilus eugeniaeEudrilus eugeniae (“African nighcrawler”) comes from(“African nighcrawler”) comes from West AfricaWest Africa  Introduced in the Philippines in 1982 by Dr. Otto GraffIntroduced in the Philippines in 1982 by Dr. Otto Graff  Most extensively cultured species in the tropicsMost extensively cultured species in the tropics CocoonsCocoons (Eggs)(Eggs) JuvenilesJuveniles (Young)(Young) 2 wks2 wks AdultAdult (Breeder)(Breeder) 2 wks2 wks
  7. 7. Biology ofBiology of EarthwormsEarthworms  Life SpanLife Span  1-2 years in nature1-2 years in nature  More than 10 years in captivityMore than 10 years in captivity  Growth RateGrowth Rate  the “African nightcrawler” can grow to more than 30 cmthe “African nightcrawler” can grow to more than 30 cm in length and 3 grams eachin length and 3 grams each
  8. 8. Ecology ofEcology of EarthwormsEarthworms  Depending on their feeding pattern,Depending on their feeding pattern, earthworms are classified into:earthworms are classified into:  Epigeic – feed on litter at the surface without burrowingEpigeic – feed on litter at the surface without burrowing in the soilin the soil Ex.Ex. Eudrilus eugeniaeEudrilus eugeniae  Anecic – feed on litter at the surface and burrow intoAnecic – feed on litter at the surface and burrow into the soilthe soil Ex.Ex. Lumbricus terrestrisLumbricus terrestris  Endogeic – feed on soil in permanent burrowsEndogeic – feed on soil in permanent burrows Ex.Ex. Pontoscolex corethrurusPontoscolex corethrurus
  9. 9. Cultural Requirements ofCultural Requirements of EarthwormsEarthworms Aeration (porous soil)Aeration (porous soil)  Not water-loggedNot water-logged  Oxygen needed for respirationOxygen needed for respiration  Moisture (40-80%)Moisture (40-80%)  For maintenance of body fluids (80% > of body weight)For maintenance of body fluids (80% > of body weight)  TemperatureTemperature  ““Cold blooded”Cold blooded”  Tropical species will die at temperatures below 12Tropical species will die at temperatures below 12oo CC  Organic Matter (decomposed plants and animal matter)Organic Matter (decomposed plants and animal matter)  At least 2% to provide substrate for microorganismsAt least 2% to provide substrate for microorganisms  C:N Ratio (proportions of carbon and nitrogen)C:N Ratio (proportions of carbon and nitrogen)

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