Earthworms in bin

kskaren(z5 MO)June 16, 2009

I've been reading some of the old posts here, and I just ran across one where the poster said they were putting earthworms in the bin with their red wigglers. Most of the responses were, that it was not a good thing, and that the earthworms would eventually die.

I have had my bin for about 5 weeks now. When I set up the bin, I used some partially decomposed leaves, which had several earthworms in it. I, too, thought it would be a good thing, and left them in. Now, a few weeks later, they seem to be multiplying rapidly, because whenever I look into the bin, I always see several big, fat, juicy ones. Should I remove them, or will my bin be ok with them in there? Thanks!

Karen

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cathd66

If the worms were originally in the leaves, then chances are that they are 'composting' worms as they were already working hard on breaking down the leaves. True 'earthworms' would have scooted down into deep burrows as soon as you disturbed the leaves. And they would be very unlikely to be above ground level during the day.
Not sure where you are, but most places have some kind of native composting worm, with E foetida or E hortensis being the most common.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 10:47AM
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kskaren(z5 MO)

Thanks for your response! I am learning so much about worms that I never knew--yes, they were in the leaves--I didn't dig into the soil and get them. I always thought they were the same kind of worms. So, these shouldn't hurt my bin? They are so much bigger than the red wigglers, will they eventually crowd out their smaller neighbors? I'm in St. Joseph, MO, so I see I'll have to learn those proper names and figure out which ones we have. Thanks again!
Karen

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 11:27AM
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greenboywi

I started up a bin with some soil from near a stream that had earthworms and lots of other creepy-crawlies in it, about a month ago, and it's doing fine so far.

What I've learned so far is that a wide range of organisms in the box is good - even so-called 'competing' species - they won't wipe out my redworm population, and they'll help 'toughen up' the worms at the same time.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 1:42PM
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steamyb(7)

What does "toughen up" mean?

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 10:04PM
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