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The Newest Invasive Species is a Worm

Not all earthworms are created equal. A new invasive species is here that can cause big problems.

Jumping worms, or Crazy worms, are different from the earthworms we want in our gardens.

  • Jumping worms were first spotted in Northeastern Illinois in 2015; they are native to East Asia. 
  • They wiggle and jump around much more than the non-native European earthworms we are used to seeing.
  • Unlike the European eathworms that move vertically through the soil creating air pockets and mixing the soil, Jumping worms stay near the surface, eating the mulch layer and depleting it of nutrients, quickly
  • The good news is that adults do not survive our winters.
  • But the bad news is that their eggs do survive during the winter and look just like a piece of dirt.

To find out more about how to identify this invasive worm, and what to do about them, read this Chicago Tribune article