Breath Of Ecology

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Worms are wonderful little creatures, and not just for fishing.


They are always hard at work with their constant movements underground, loosening the soil and permeating it with air and water. 


Their digestion of dead plants and their droppings result in a healthier soil, and many gardeners purchase them for that purpose, as well as for aeration.


They have no eyes, but constantly dig tunnels through the soil, using their strong muscles and tiny hairs on their bodies to push them forward. Those tiny hairs clinging to the soil make it difficult for hungry birds to pull them out.


They absorb oxygen from the damp soil through their skin, but are forced out of their tunnels during a heavy rainfall, seeking relief on the ground above.


There are approximately 500,000 species of worms, which include tapeworms found in humans and animals, which are not so pleasant to discover as our valuable earthworms.


This is why I can't help apologizing to the poor little worm I have just accidentally cut in two while gardening, although I've learned that the part with the head will continue to live and grow.


That's always a relief to me.


Written by:  Sr. Joel:  a Dominican Sister of Peace who lives in Springfield, KY.  She is a native of New Orleans  and has been a teacher, school and parish administrator, social worker, religious educator, and missionary.  She has written "Breath of Ecology" for local newspapers and has published a book under the same title.

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