11 Iowa Counties Report Invasive Species of Jumping Worms

Photo: dnr.wi.gov

(Iowa) -- 11 Iowa counties are reporting an invasive species of jumping worms.

Iowa State University Entomologist Donald Lewis says the worms get their name by the way they jump when they're disturbed. He says, over time, the species will eat enough organic matter to change soil composition, leading to erosion and other problems. The worms originated in East Asia were noticed in Illinois and Wisconsin first but have been spreading in Iowa in recent years, first detected in 2017. Iowa counties that have reported jumping worms include:

  • Linn
  • Johnson
  • Winneshiek
  • Clayton
  • Buchanan
  • Dubuque
  • Muscatine
  • Clinton
  • Scott
  • Polk
  • Story

Lewis says anyone who sees jumping worms should report the sightings to insects@iastate.edu

More information is available through the Iowa State University Extension Horticulture and Home Pest website.

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