Origin: Southeast Asia
Impact: Jumping worms have earned this common name because they will thrash around like angry snakes when moved. Unlike our European naturalized earthworms (Lumbricus spp.) that mill through the dirt and excrete nutrients back into the soil after digestion; these invasive jumping worms consume all organic matter and leave no nutrients for the plants.
Adults All earthworms have a collar-like structure called a clitellum which is present near their head, but invasive Jumping Worms have a white clitellum that fully encircles the worm and is flush with the worm body. For European Earthworms the clitellum is pink, only partially covers the worm and is raised like a saddle. Invasive jumping worms are also dry and smooth and not slimy and floppy like European earthworms.
Larval Amynthas spp. will not have the clitellum present, so identification relies on the texture of the worm and its characteristic movements. Development from hatchling to adult is estimated to be a minimum of 90 days, based on frost-free periods of invaded locations.
Learn More: Species Profile.
If you have spotted Amynthas spp. (Jumping Worms), use this report form to send an email to the appropriate authorities.