JOIN OUR JUMPING WORM BIOBLITZ TEAM
Jumping Worms, the latest non-native earthworm species to impact MN’s gardens and forests.
Jumping worms are an earthworm that act very “unworm” like when compared to the European earthworms you are accustomed too. Active, they move like a snake and leave the soil looking like someone emptied coffee grounds or kitty litter. They are commonly found in mulch, compost, potted plants, and fishing bait. Humans are the main vector for transporting them to new places.
This non-native earthworm was first documented in 2006 in Minnesota and has been causing problems across the United States for years. Jumping worms can drastically alter the soil structure and nutrient cycling in our forests and gardens. People are very effective at moving species long distances and jumping worms are easily transported. We are looking for help investigating jumping worms’ distribution and dispersal mechanisms throughout Minnesota.
With the help from citizen scientists like you and our State partners (Worms Watch, Boulder Lake Environmental Learning Center, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the University of Minnesota) we can investigate how these worms spread and act. Join us on our journey into your dirt to track these pesky worms.
The good news is, jumping worms are not yet well established in Minnesota and there are actions people can take to prevent their spread. Gardeners and anglers can play a big role by being vigilant and reporting their presence through EDDMapS.
Enjoy getting out in your own backyard or garden, but stay safe, social distance and abide by all covid-19 guidelines for your area.
Other steps that help:
·Don’t buy worms advertised as jumping worms, “snake worms,” “Alabama jumpers” or “crazy worms” for any purpose.
·Anglers should dispose of any unwanted bait worms in the trash.
·Gardeners should inspect incoming mulch or plants for jumping worms and if swapping plants with friends, wash off the soil and share the plants as bare root plants.
·Recreationists should brush the mud off their boots and equipment.
If you think you’ve found jumping worms, take a photo and report to EDDMapS.
Jumping Worm Introduction Video features Dr. Lee Frelich, director of the University of Minnesota Center for Forest Ecology, talking about how jumping worms are sometimes found in garden soils and packaged garden mulch products.
PLEASE PASS THIS ON TO INDIVIDUALS AND GROUPS YOU KNOW.
Thanks for your consideration helping with this important citizen science project,