Earthworms Ebooks Catalog
Do You Want To Learn More About Green Living That Can Save You Money? Discover How To Create A Worm Farm From Scratch! Recycling has caught on with a more people as the years go by. Well, now theres another way to recycle that may seem unconventional at first, but it can save you money down the road.
Yet, this is modern-day common sense. Common sense in other times told people quite a different thing. They saw earthworms arising from the mud, especially after a rain. They saw maggots coming out of the garbage. They saw evidence all around them of life arising from nonliving precursors of the spontaneous generation of life. In fact, Jan van Helmont (1577-1644) passed on a recipe for making mice put some old rags in a dark corner, sprinkle some grains of wheat on the rags, and in twenty-one days you have mice. The mice presumably generated spontaneously.
Species and individuals within an ecosystem may interact directly with one another through the exchange of energy and material. Predators, for example, obtain their energy and meet their nutritional needs through consumption of prey species. Organisms also interact indirectly through modification of their surrounding environment. Earthworms physically modify soil structure, affecting
Significant similarities both among the homeo-boxes identified in fruit flies and among the ho-meoboxes of distantly related species have been found. In fruit flies, homeoboxes have been identified in homeotic selector genes, segmentation genes, and egg polarity genes. Whether homeo-boxes affect gene regulation and segmentation in other organisms is an exciting, and open, question. Segmented worms, leeches, earthworms, sea urchins, frogs, mice, and humans all have homeoboxes. Different mouse homeobox genes have been shown to be expressed in specific regions during embryogenesis. Relatively little is known about the process of segmentation in vertebrates, so it is more difficult to interpret the results of such experiments. Also, it appears that segmentation in vertebrates and in fruit flies (and other invertebrates) evolved separately. Thus, the presence of a homeobox may or may not indicate a common developmental process for segmentation among animals.
High tourism pressure coupled with impact of introduced turkeys, hens, rabbits and rats have had a major impact on the number of tenebrionid beetles surviving on eastern Iberian Mediterranean islands (Cartagena and Galante, 2002). Indeed, rodents can have a phenomenal appetite for indigenous fauna, with mice (Mus musculus) on Marion Island consuming up to 194 g ha-1 of invertebrate larvae and adults, weevil larvae and adults, earthworms, spiders and flies. Weevil adults alone were consumed at such a rate that nearly six times the annual average weevil (Ectemnorhinus spp.) biomass was consumed over a year (Smith et al., 2002). No wonder the Black rat Rattus rattus eliminated the Lord Howe Island stick insect Dryococelus australis on that island (Wells et al., 1983 Priddel et al., 2003).
There are variations in sexual reproduction as well. Some invertebrates are hermaphrodites. These animals, such as earthworms, possess both male and female reproductive systems. Some can fertilize themselves others cannot. When hermaphrodites mate with other members of their species, each individual donates and receives sperm, resulting in twice as many offspring per mating. Gonochoristic species have separate sexes,
The four other kingdoms of living things and the common names given to their most important phyla are Protoctista (algae, protozoa, slime molds), Fungi (mushrooms, molds, lichens), Animalia (sponges, jellyfish, flatworms, ribbon worms, rotifers, spiny-headed worms, parasitic nematodes, horsehair worms, mollusks, priapu-lid worms, spoon worms, earthworms, tongue worms, velvet worms, insects, beard worms, starfish, arrowworms, and chordates), and Plantae (mosses, ferns, and pine-bearing and flowering plants). Phyla are based on similarities in evolutionary development. Life-forms are divided into ninety-two phyla There are seventeen phyla in the kingdom Prokaryotae twenty-seven in Protoctista five in Fungi thirty-three in Animalia, and ten in Plantae. Each phylum is divided into classes, then orders, families, genera (the singular form is genus), and finally, species. The last two divisions are based on the most recent evolutionary differences. Some phyla have only a few genera and...
Simple animals such as sea anemones can process information with simple networks of neurons that do little more than provide direct lines of communication from sensory cells to effectors (Figure 44.1a). The anemone's nerve net is most developed around the tentacles and the oral opening, where it facilitates detection of food or danger and causes tentacles to extend or retract. Bilaterally symmetrical animals, such as earthworms, that move more rapidly through their environments need to process and integrate larger amounts of information. This need is met by clusters of neurons called ganglia (Figure 44.1b). Ganglia serving different functions may be distributed around the body, as in the earthworm or the squid (Figure 44.1c). Frequently one pair of ganglia is larger and more central than the others and is therefore given the designation of brain.
Often in excess amounts that leach into groundwater and streams. Exotic species also can alter nutrient cycling processes. Liu and Zou (2002) reported that invasion of tropical pastures and wet forest in Puerto Rico by exotic earthworms significantly increased decomposition rates.
In a biology practical, the lengths and weights of 10 earthworms are measured (Table 11.3). Determine the Pearson correlation coefficient for this data. What can you say about the relationship between the length and the weight of an earthworm Table 11.3 Lengths and weights of 10 earthworms Table 11.3 Lengths and weights of 10 earthworms
Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) is one of several pathogenic bacteria registered for use on edible plants in the United States. It reproduces only in the digestive tracts of caterpillars and is harmless to humans and all other wildlife, including earthworms, birds, and mammals. It is exceptionally effective against a wide range of caterpillars, such as tomato hornworms and fruitworms, cabbage worms and loopers, grape leaf rollers, corn borers, cutworms, fall webworms, and tent caterpillars. It is mass-produced and sold in a powdered spore form at nurseries and garden supply stores under the trade names of Dipel, Biotrol, and Thuricide. The powder is mixed with water and applied as a spray. Beneficial bacteria are available from Solutions Unlimited, Sharon Springs, NY 13459.
Some epithelial cells produce and release protective secretions onto the external surface. Vertebrates and invertebrates both have mucous-secreting cells. On internal surfaces, such as the digestive tract, mucus protects cells from being broken down along with the food. On the external surface, mucus may trap bacteria or, as in earthworms, prevent death from desiccation (drying out). Another example of an invertebrate secretion is a covering called a cuticle. In insects this cuticle includes a mixture of proteins that eventually harden and form the exoskeleton.
Open-space habitats deep within cities and quickly exploiting unused areas within most suburbs. Terrestrial predators are almost equally common, but most are nocturnal or nearly so consequently, their contacts with humans are quite limited. Many urban predators are, in fact, mistaken for neighborhood pets and left alone or avoided Coyotes (Canis latrans) are often mistaken for dogs, especially when seen in twilight. The wily coyote is equally at home in the suburbs of Los Angeles, California, and the urban parks of New Haven, Connecticut, joining a host of small and medium-sized mammal predators such as foxes (Vulpes spp.) and scavengers such as opossums (Didelphis marsupalis), raccoons (Procyon lotor), and skunks (Mephitis mephitis). These urban predators have many behavioral attributes in common. All are omnivorous and able to feed on a wide variety of natural foods such as fruit, small birds and mammals, insects, and invertebrates such as beetles, grasshoppers, and earthworms.
General functional groupings for detritivores are based on their effect on decomposition processes. Coarse and fine comminuters are instrumental in the fragmentation of litter material. Major taxa in terrestrial ecosystems include millipedes, earthworms, termites, and beetles (coarse) and mites, collembolans, and various other small arthropods (fine). Many species are primarily fungivores or bacteriovores that fragment substrates while feeding on the surface microflora. Many fungivores and bacteriovores, including nematodes and protozoa, as well as arthropods, feed exclusively on microflora and affect the abundance and distribution of these decomposers (e.g., Santos et al. 1981). A number of species, including dung beetles, millipedes, and termites, are coprophages, either feeding on feces of larger species or reingesting their own feces following microbial decay and enrichment (Cambefort 1991, Coe 1977, Dangerfield 1994, Holter 1979, Kohlmann 1991, McBrayer 1975). Many detritivores...
Cellulose is the principal organic compound in the diets of herbivores. Most herbivores, however, cannot produce cellu-lases, the enzymes that hydrolyze cellulose. Exceptions include silverfish (insects well known for eating books and stored papers), earthworms, and shipworms. Other herbivores, from termites to cattle, rely on microorganisms living in their digestive tracts to digest cellulose for them.
The bacteria, which are easily mass-produced by commercial companies, are sold in the form of a stable wet-table dust containing millions of spores. When the spores are sprayed on food plants, they are harmless to humans, birds, animals, earthworms, or any living creatures other than moth or butterfly larvae. When a caterpillar ingests any tissue with Bt spores on it, the bacteria quickly become active and multiply within the digestive tract, soon
(b) Earthworms are hermaphroditic (each individual is simultaneously both male and female). When they copulate, each individual donates and receives sperm. (c) This Australian tiger leech is attached to a leaf by its posterior sucker as it waits for a mammalian host. (d) Vestimentiferans live around hydrothermal vents deep in the ocean.Their skin secretes chitin and other substances, forming tubes. oligochaetes. More than 90 percent of the approximately 3,000 described species of oligochaetes (class Oligochaeta) live in freshwater or terrestrial habitats. Oligochaetes ( few hairs ) have no parapodia, eyes, or anterior tentacles, and they have relatively few setae. Earthworms the most familiar oligochaetes (see Figure 32.22) are scavengers and ingesters of soil, from which they extract food particles.
Earthworms, 93, 165, 180 ecological niche see life boxes ecology of extreme organisms, 257-68 ectotherms, 10, 75, 130, 132, 180 eelworm wool, 109-11 Ehrenberg, Christian, 101 electromagnetic spectrum, 214, 214 Ellesmere Island, 67 Emperor penguin, 62-3, 63 endolithic microorganisms, 44, 57 endotherms, 10, 130-3, 132, 154, 155, 188 enzymes and cold, 192, 195 and desiccation, 103, 111 and pH, 207 and pressure, 202 thermal stability of, 142, 146, 148 uses of extreme enzymes, 149, 195 ephemeral plants, 42 Eretmoptera murphyi, 162 Europa, 241-2, 242 Eurosta solidaginis, 172, 173, 175 evolution and extreme organisms, 268-76 and symbiosis, 88-9 and the definition of extreme, 271-6 and the definition of life, 221 of aerobic organisms, 273-4 of deep sea organisms, 274-5 of life onto land, 272-3
Cuffney et al. (1990) and J. Wallace et al. (1991) reported that 70 reduction in abundance of shredders from a small headwater stream in North Carolina, United States, reduced leaf litter decay rates by 25-28 and export of fine particulate organic matter by 56 . As a result, unprocessed leaf litter accumulated (J. Wallace et al. 1995). Wise and Schaefer (1994) found that excluding macroarthropods and earthworms from leaf litter of selected plant species in a beech forest reduced decay rates 36-50 for all litter types except fresh beech litter. When all detritivores were excluded, comparable reduction in decay rate was 36-93 , indicating the prominent role of large com-minuters in decomposition. Tian et al. (1995) manipulated abundances of millipedes and earthworms in tropical agricultural ecosystems. They found that millipedes alone significantly accounted for 10-65 of total decay over a 10-week period. Earthworms did not affect decay significantly by...
Here the intersegmental partitions or septa are lost or are perforated. This accomplishes the movement of coelomic fluid between segments during muscle contraction. Thus, circular muscles in posterior segments can drive fluid anteriorly, swelling and elongating the anterior portion of the animal. The posterior segments left behind can catch up with the anterior segments when the longitudinally arranged fibers contract. In this way burrowing is effected. Similar contractile wave patterns are used by terrestrial oligochaetes such as earthworms to create peristaltic-type contractions that drive the animal forward. The contraction of circular and longitudinal muscles alternate to create thick and thin areas of the body. This corresponds with elongation and subsequent contraction of the body segments. In earthworms, the segments retain their inter-segmental septa. The Hirudinida or leeches have done away with their intersegmental septa and thus the coelomic space is...
Golden moles inhabit grassy forests, river-banks, mountains, and semidesert areas of Africa. The smallest species is Grant's golden mole, 2.5 inches long, and the largest species is the giant golden mole, 9 inches long. Their golden fur repels water, keeping them dry while digging. When burrowing, leathery pads cover their noses, keeping dirt out. Burrowing allows foraging for insects, larvae, earthworms, crickets, slugs, snails, and spiders. Golden moles cannot see well and find food by touch. Sometimes they come to the Star-nosed moles, of eastern Canada and the northeastern United States, are black-furred, five inches long (excluding the tail) and weigh three ounces. They live near water, swim well, and dig in soil along shorelines. They burrow day and night, foraging for earthworms, aquatic insects, fish, and mollusks. Their nose tips hold a twenty-two-tentacle, touch-sensitive star which is their main sense organ. Star-nosed moles are solitary.
Soils are complex systems made up of living and nonliving components. The living components include plant roots as well as populations of bacteria, fungi, protists, and animals such as earthworms and insects (Figure 37.2). The nonliving portion of the soil includes rock fragments ranging in size from large rocks through sand and silt and finally to tiny particles called clay that are 2 im or less in diameter. Soil also contains water and dissolved mineral nutrients, air spaces, and dead organic matter. The air spaces are crucial sources of oxygen (in the form of O2) for plant roots. The characteristics of soils are not static. Soils change constantly through natural phenomena such as rain, temperature extremes, and the activities of plants and animals, as well as human activities agriculture in particular. Soil scientists recognize three major horizons (A, B, and C) in the profile of a typical soil (Figure 37.3). Topsoil is the A horizon, from which mineral nutrients may be depleted...
Annelids such as earthworms and leeches have paired cerebral ganglia near the mouth, connected by a solid ventral nerve cord to smaller paired ganglia in each body segment. Giant nerve fibers in the nerve cord allow rapid responses to escape from threats using reflex actions and patterned behavior. Earthworms can be taught to travel a maze by simple associative learning, in which repeated stimuli become linked to a specific behavior pattern, but this learning requires many repetitions and disappears within a few days if not reinforced.
American short-tailed shrews inhabit southeastern Canada, the northeastern United States, Texas, and Louisiana. They have thick, gray-black fur, are four to five inches long, have one-inch tails, and weigh one ounce. Like other shrews, American short-tailed shrews constantly seek food, eating insects, earthworms, snails, small vertebrates, centipedes, spiders, mice, frogs, and plants. They have venomous saliva, used to stun and kill prey, which is also painful to humans and large animal predators. Predators of the shrews are owls and other raptors.
Unlike the body segments of segmented worms such as earthworms, which are all essentially alike, the segments of the Drosophila body are clearly different from one another. The adult fly has an anterior head (composed of several fused segments), three different thoracic segments, and eight abdominal segments at the posterior end. In the Drosophila larva, the thoracic and abdominal segments all appear to be similar, but they have already received their instructions to form these specialized adult segments. Several types of genes are expressed sequentially in the embryo to define these segments. The first step in this process is to establish the polarity of the embryo.
To resilience of the vegetation because they often have attributes similar to the dominant species and may act as a functional substitute. Another way to phrase the issue is the principle of complementarity the stability of the system benefits if species complement each other in their function. The argument extends to communities of decomposer invertebrates. In microcosm experiments with earthworms, isopods, and millipedes Heemsbergen et al. (2004) demonstrated that the effect of detritivore invertebrates on soil respiration and litter breakdown depended not on the species composition per se, but on the functional dissimilarity within that community. The suggestion was that positive interactions in the community cause a functionally dissimilar assembly to have a larger effect on soil processes than a functionally similar assembly, independent of the number of species.
A food web, however, represents many interconnecting food chains in a community, describing the actual, complex feeding relationships within a given community. A food web also reflects the feeding nature of organisms that occupy more than one trophic level. Animals such as raccoons, bears, rats, and a variety of birds are omnivores, eating at different consumer levels at different times. In addition to producers and consumers, a functional ecosystem also consists of detritus feeders and decomposers that release nutrients for reuse. The extremely diverse network of detritus feeders is made up of earthworms, mites, protists, centepedes, nematodes, worms, some crustaceans and insects, and even a few verte-
Other odd New Guinea animals are the echidnas, perhaps the most primitive mammal in the world. Echidnas lay eggs and are related to the duck-billed platypus. There are several echidna species the largest is the giant spiny anteater, which has long spines, dense fur, thick claws, and a long, slender snout. Despite its name, it eats mostly earthworms, which it reels into its mouth using spines on its tongue.
Almost all invertebrate groups contain some hermaphroditic species. An earthworm is an example of a simultaneous hermaphrodite, meaning that it is both male and female at the same time. When two earthworms mate, they exchange sperm, and as a result, the eggs of each are fertilized (see Figure 32.24b). Some vertebrates, such as the anemonefish described at the beginning of Chapter 21, are sequential hermaphrodites, meaning that an individual may function as a male or as a female at different times in its life.
First, it turned out that metallothionein is induced not only by metal ions, but also by a variety of other stresses, including changes in redox state, oxidative stress and stress hormone signals. This suggests that the protein might be a member of the integrated stress response and has other roles as well. A function as a scavenger of free radicals is often suggested. Second, metal-lothionein should not be considered a single protein. Many organisms have more than one Mt gene the human genome has no less than 16 Mt genes. Most invertebrates investigated so far have two genes, one strongly inducible by cadmium and encoding a cadmium-binding protein, the other not inducible and encoding a copper-binding protein. The presence of a specific zinc-binding metallothionein in invertebrates is doubtful the copper- and cadmium-binding metallothioneins of Drosophila, nematodes, earthworms, and snails are not inducible by zinc. Third, other metal-chelating substances have been found this...
Lograms) are adapted to aquatic life and eat fish and shellfish. The widely distributed badgers (body mass 0.6 to 10.9 kilograms) are adapted to digging and often specialize in eating earthworms. The true skunks of North America (body mass 0.4 to 2 kilograms) are terrestrial omnivores that have specialized anal scent glands used against predators. The weasel group (body mass 0.06 to 2.3 kilograms) includes a host of long, thin forms such as mink, ferrets, and martens. Mustelids are more numerous in temperate regions than in tropical ones, although otters are found around the world. Another tropical mustelid is the tayra, a weasellike semiarboreal predator that may attack monkeys in the trees.
Third, the stomach, a muscular vessel into which the esophagus leads, mechanically breaks down the food through contractions and wavelike motions, and begins the process of chemical digestion via enzymes. Sometimes the stomach is equipped with hard projections (such as the gizzards and gastric mills of birds, cockroaches, earthworms, or alligators). The lining of the stomach or of its diverticula (branches) secretes digestive enzymes and, in vertebrates, hormones and hydrochloric acid. The stomach opens into the next chamber, the intestine.
Few terrestrial vertebrates are resident in Antarctica, and those that do occur are limited to sub-Antarctic islands. There are no naturally occurring mammals, reptiles, or amphibians, although humans have deliberately or accidentally introduced a range of animals such as rats, mice, fish, chickens, rabbits, cats, pigs, sheep, cattle, and reindeer to the sub-Antarctic, many impacting native species. Terrestrial animals of the sub- and maritime Antarctic include arthropods, earthworms, and mollusks. Higher insects include spiders, beetles, and flies, most of which are confined to the less severe areas. Microinvertebrate groups such as nematodes, tardigrades, and rotifers are also numerically well represented. The terrestrial fauna of the severe areas of the Antarctic continent are even more simplified. No higher insects are present the smallest arthropods are restricted to
Even animals as primitive as sponges have the ability to recognize and maintain self-integrity. Scientists have broken apart two different sponges of the same species in a blender, intermixing the separated cells in a dish. Cells crawled away from nonself cells and toward self cells, reaggregating into clusters of organized tissues containing cells of only one particular individual. Phagocytic cells that engulf and destroy foreign invaders were first identified by a scientist who had impaled a starfish larva on a thorn. He observed that, over time, large cells moved to surround the thorn, apparently trying to engulf and destroy it, recognizing it as nonself. Even earthworms have the ability to recognize and reject skin grafts from other individuals. If the graft comes from another worm of the same population, the skin is rejected in about eight months, but rejection of skin from a worm of a different population occurs in two weeks. Phagocytic cells in earthworms have immunolog-ical...
Although we may treat the claims of the cryogenecists with some scepticism, there are, remarkably, a number of organisms that have solved these problems and are able to survive the freezing of a substantial proportion of their water. These include a number of animals -some nematodes, molluscs, earthworms, insects, other arthropods and even frogs and turtles.
In contrast with small-particle consumers, numerous animals ingest large food items. Some of these organisms are saprovores, such as earthworms. These worms consume large masses of soil and dead leaves, from which they obtain usable organic matter. Some planarians (flatworms) extend a long extensible tube (called a pharynx) from their mouth to ingest decaying material. Other examples of saprovores include millipedes, wood-eating beetles, some sea cucumbers, many round-worms, and a few snails.
Many sexually reproducing organisms have both male organs which produce sperm and female organs which produce eggs, a condition known as hermaphroditism. Earthworms and many snails are simultaneous hermaphrodites, meaning that both male and female organs are present at the same time. Hermaphrodites often have their parts so arranged that self-fertilization is difficult or impossible. One system that guarantees cross-fertilization is serial hermaphroditism. In this system, each individual develops the organs of one sex first, then changes into the opposite sex as it matures further.
The sea mouse is a segmented worm, related to earthworms. An undersea scavenger, it lives in shallow coastal waters worldwide. In a sea mouse, each body segment is separated from the others by chitinous tissues. On the sides of the segments are muscular protrusions having bristly hairs, used in locomotion. Finer hairs growing
Number of animals can tolerate ice forming in their bodies, to varying degrees, including some insects and other arthropods, molluscs, nema-todes, earthworms, frogs and turtles. Other groups of invertebrates, which inhabit soil or freshwater sites which periodically freeze, may be subject to inoculative freezing and need to be freezing tolerant to survive. Some tardigrades from Greenland and earthworms from Siberia have been reported to be freezing tolerant.
Most animals and plants have only a limited ability to survive water loss. Humans may die if they lose 14 per cent of the water from their bodies. Some frogs can lose 50 per cent and some earthworms 83 per cent of their water and still recover. Some organisms, however, can lose more than 95 per cent, or even more than 99 per cent, of their water and enter into a state of anhydrobiosis (life without water) in which their metabolism comes, reversibly, to a standstill. There is a problem, however, in defining which organisms are capable of anhydrobiosis. Organisms show a whole range of abilities to survive water loss, ranging from losing just a little bit (as can humans) to losing almost all of it. At what point do we consider an organism to be anhydrobiotic
Many species of ants have poison sacs and or stingers in the end of the metasoma for defense against predators. Worldwide, however, ants are one of the most important predators of small invertebrates, including other insects. Ants are important dispersers of the seeds that they harvest. Ants turn over and aerate the soil as much as or more than earthworms.