The earthworms of British Columbia are a little known faunal group. We would like to thank the Royal Ontario Museum for providing permissions to use extracts, including illustrations, from the following publication in the atlas pages: Reynolds, John W. 1977. The Earthworms (Lumbricidae and Sparganophilidae) of Ontario. Thanks also to John Reynolds for provision of substantial information on earthworms and review of the atlas pages.
Click on the image(s) below to view an expanded illustration for this taxon.
This is an introduced European species of earthworm. Reynolds (1977) provides the following description for it: “Length 25-130 mm, diameter 3-6 mm, segment number 75-150, prostomium epliobic, first dorsal pore 9/10-13/14, usually 11/12. Clitellum xxx-xxxv. Tubercula pubertatis xxxi-xxxiv. Setal pairings as in Octolasion cyaneum. Frequently setae a and/or b on xxii and occasionally on ix-xii, xiv, xvii, xix-xxiii, xxvii, xxxvii, or xxxviii are on gential tumescences and modified into gential setae. Male pores on xv and on large glandular papillae extending over xiv and xvi, occasionally limited to xv. Seminal vesicles, four pairs in 9-12, with pairs in 11 and 12 larger than pairs in 9 and 10. Spermathecae, two pairs opening on level C or between c and d in 9/10 and 10/11. Body cylindrical but slightly octagonal posteriorly. Colour variable, milky white, grey, blue, or pink.”
Reynolds (1977) indicates: “Activity may not be year round although summer drought and winter cold may impose two rest periods. [This species] is an obligatorily parthenogenetic species (Gates, 1973a; Reynolds, 1974c) and copulation occurs below the surface of the soil.”
Reynolds (1977) provides the following habitat information for this species: “Reported from soils of pH 5.5-8.08, [this species] has been found under stones and logs, in peat, leaf mould, compost, forest litter, gardens, cultivated fields and pastures, bogs, stream banks, in springs, and around the roots of submerged vegetation (Gates 1972c). The species is also known from caves in Europe and North America. Smith (1917) reported this species as commonly found under logs, leaf mould, and debris of various kinds, in compost heaps, and to some extent, in the soil.... [This] was the most abundant species in Tennessee (Reynolds et al., 1974) and was obtained under logs, debris, and rocks, and by digging. In Ontario it was most frequently found under logs.”
This species is reported from Europe, North America, South America, Mexico, Asia, Africa and Australia (Reynolds 1977, Reynolds and Wetzel 2008)). In the US, it is reported from AL, AR, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, MA, MD, ME, MI, MO, MS, MT, NE, NC, ND, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV (Reynolds and Wetzel 2008).
Canadian and BC Range
In Canada, this species has been reported from AB, BC, MB, NA, ON, PQ (Reynolds and Wetzel 2008). In British Columbia it has been collected from several locations in the southern part of the province, including Vancouver Island, Fort Langley, Creston, Haney, Grice Bay, and Port Alberrni (Marshall and Fender 2007).
Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2021. E-Fauna BC:
Electronic Atlas of the Fauna of British Columbia [efauna.bc.ca]. Lab
for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British
Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed:
2022-05-27 11:20:22 AM]
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