Saturday:) Saving Worms and Other Such Silliness

13 Jun

“Life is dear to every living thing; the worm that crawls upon the ground will struggle for it.”

Solomon Northup

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Did you ever notice that after the rain, there are all these poor worms on the scratchy concrete sidewalks trying to make their way back to the grass?

Oxygen diffuses easily through air, and the soil stays aerobic because oxygen comes in from the surface.” But after a rain, the soil pores and the worm burrows fill with water. … “The worms can’t get enough oxygen when the soil is flooded, so they come to the surface to breathe.”Jun 29, 2007

https://news.wisc.edu › curiosities-af…

But after the sun starts to shine again, those thirsty worms are in danger of getting trapped aboveground, as exposure to bright sunlight can temporarily paralyze them. “So, a worm comes to the surface while it’s raining, then the sun comes out and the water on the sidewalk evaporates quickly. The worm’s skin is getting drier and it can’t move because of the light, so it will dry up and die,” Sherman warned.

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The first time I encountered sad struggling worms on the sidewalk, I couldn’t stand to see them suffer. I also couldn’t stand the thought of picking up a slimy wiggly worm. But I thought to myself, “Self, how would you feel if you were desperately trying to get back to a safe place, but you were struggling in vain, crawling on hot gritty concrete with no hope of salvation?” So now, I bend down and pick up the exhausted member of the phylum Annelida, otherwise known as Lumbricina. I place them gently on the nearby grass in hopes that they will survive. It breaks my heart to see them suffer.

Speaking of hearts, did you know that worms don’t have just one heart? They have five hearts, not as complicated and fancy as ours, but still five. And Swedish scientist studying worms believe that they can feel pain. Thus, if you have a chance to save a worm from some pain, please, “Don’t go breaking their hearts.”

We have had SO much rain lately here in North Texas. I have saved many a wiggly worm. I don’t get squeamish any more, but I do flinch a little when they get startled and go into a crazy wiggling frenzy. I just talk nice to them and say, “It’s OK.” And NO, they don’t talk back to me. They are worms after all.

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