Earthworms are valuable and silent gardeners. They help aerate the soil and provide moisture to the ground with its intricate tunneling system. On top of that, we also collect earthworms for fishing bait and composting. You can get them from your local gardening store or online, but knowing where to find worms in your own backyard can save you the trouble of purchasing. We’ll learn how to find earthworms in a few easy steps!
The Two Types Of Earthworms
When you are ready to hunt for worms, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with them first before digging. Knowing the different types can help us in learning how to find earthworms based on their nature and habitat:
- Red Worms are your usual common earthworms. These squirmy critters are smaller and thinner than Night Crawlers. These are the best worms for your garden and compost bin. They like to live underground and can stay there for their entire life. They can grow up to three inches and are reddish-purple in color. They are usually found in animal manure or decaying plant material. They are usually found in lawns and gardens. You don’t need to dig deep enough as they usually stay close to the surface and sometimes on top of the ground.
- Night Crawlers can grow up to fourteen inches long. They love to surface at night. These are bluish to grayish in color. Night Crawlers are usually used as fishing bait because they continue to wiggle for a period on the hook even underwater. They also love gardens and lawns but are mostly attracted to dead plants.
Both worms can be found on moist earth. They tend to move upward during spring when the ground is moist. Find moist earth! This is the best place to find earthworms. When it is winter, Red Worms tend to live in the upper layer of soil and wouldn’t burrow deep. For good measure, they lay eggs in tiny sacs that will not freeze. Night Crawlers love to burrow deep underground. They can burrow as deep as six and a half feet, to avoid snow and ice.
By understanding their behavior and knowing how or where they thrive, you will soon know how to find worms in your own backyard.
When To Catch Earthworms
If you want to know how to find earthworms, you also need to know when to catch them. They love the moisture found in their tunnels, but if it rains, they tend to go up because their tunnels fill up with rainwater. They need to get out quickly, or else they will suffocate. Once out and about, they will squirm around the wet ground.
It’s best to find worms when it rains. If you’re not keen to put your raincoat on, you can also hunt for worms after it rains.
Where To Find Earthworms
Earlier, we mentioned that worms love the moist ground. But if you have a wide patch of land and are unsure how to find earthworms in a large area, we can teach you where to find earthworms best.
- Look for fallen and decaying leaves.
- Look for a nearby water source, and worms are usually nearby.
- Look under rocks and logs.
- Sometimes they are under large tree roots.
When you touch the ground with your bare hand, and it feels cool and moist, most likely, an earthworm is living there.
How To Catch Earthworms
Are you ready to catch worms? Here are a few tips and tricks you can try!
- Use a large sheet of brown corrugated cardboard. Moisten it with water and place it on the ground overnight. You are going to find a bunch of worms loving the moisture the next morning. They love cardboard!
- You can soap the ground with a liquid soap and water mixture. This is a less ideal method as it may ruin plants and trickle down the nearest water source unless you use eco-friendly soaps. Make sure to use environmentally friendly and safe liquid soap. Mix water and liquid soap in water and pour over the ground. Worms will begin to go above ground as the soap will make it difficult for them to breathe. Once you use this method on one patch, make sure to let the ground breathe for a few weeks. Worms will tend to avoid that area because of the soap.
- Worm grunting is a popular method and also a sport. You will need a wooden stake measuring two feet long with one flat end and one pointed end. Hammer the stake halfway into the ground. Using a hand saw or rooping iron, create vibrations by running it over the flat end of the stake. Worms will sense the vibrations and think that a predator is close by.
If you have a healthy backyard, you can be sure to owe the lush greens and blooming flowers to the vast silent workers tunneling beneath the earth every day. Whether you are going to use them as bait for fishing, as super scientists for your compost bin, or as pets for your worm tank, you can be sure that worms will always be there for your wormy needs. They reproduce every three months and thrive on dead leaves, vegetable peels, and the occasional animal poop. They’re pretty happy creatures as long as you give them moist soil and biodegradable kitchen scraps.
Now you know how to find earthworms and where to catch them. With a little patience and some elbow grease, you will have a bucket load of earthworms in no time. If your backyard is too dry or can’t find a nearby water source to hunt worms, you can always find worms online or at the nearest local gardening store. We hope you enjoy hunting for worms and catching them with this handy guide! Find out more about earthworms.