All earthworms in Vermont are non-native. There are 19 species of earthworms known to occur throughout the state. Approximately 12,000 years ago the state of Vermont was covered by glacial ice. This event removed any native earthworms which may have evolved with our forests.
Earthworms were inadvertently imported with soil and plant materials from Europe and Asia. They have continued to be imported purposefully as fishing bait and for use in gardens and composting.
Some species live on the forest floor other live in the mineral layers of the soil.
- Reduce forest floor organic matter
- Relocate carbon lower in soil profile
- Reduce herbaceous layer
- Alter seed bed
- Change forest habitat structure, possibly affecting salamanders and birds
- Alter soil temperature, moisture, and water filtration
Found throughout the state.