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Worms refer to various unrelated invertebrates that share the typical characteristics of having soft, slender, elongated, cylindrical-tubelike bodies. Worms are not classified as insects. Worms do not have limbs, nor appendages, except for the polychaete that has bristles or hair-like structures on the side of its body.
See the fact file below for more information on the worms or alternatively, you can download our 24-page Worms worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Earthworms are scavengers, meaning they will eat almost anything that was once alive.
- As scavengers, they help in decomposing an organism’s dead body.
- It was formerly believed that when a worm was cut, both parts would regenerate and continue to grow, but this is only a myth and was busted a long time ago.
- In fact, only half of it was true, as only one part of a worm will regenerate: the part where the head is attached.
- Worms lack organs that are vital for humans; for example, they do not have lungs. Interestingly, worms use their skin to breathe.
- Even though worms can regenerate, they are not immortal.
- Worms do not live for so long as their average lifespan is only up to 4 or 5 years.
- Worms share a same form of being a tube-like creature, and this particular characteristic is found in up to 2700 types of worm.
- The worm population is large, though often unseen. There are roughly 1 million worms living in one acre of land.
- Worms are cold-blooded so expect them to inhabit warm areas.
- Worms can have between 1 and 5 pairs of hearts.
- Worms are not heavy eaters. However, they can eat the equivalent of their own weight in a day.
- Water or moisture is important for worms. When dehydrated, their skin dries out and cannot breathe, so eventually they will die.
- Worms do not have a single sex. Worms are hermaphrodites as they are male and female at the same time.
TYPES OF WORM
- Platyhelminthes or flatworms
- Named from the Greek words platys (flat) and helmis (worm).
- Flatworms are symbiotrophs or animals that survive through mutualism or by benefiting from other animals and vice versa.
- The soft body of a platyhelminth is bilaterally symmetrical.
- Flatworms are acoelomates, meaning, they have no body cavity.
- Flatworms have no specialized circulatory and respiratory organs.
- Flatworms are classified into groups in traditional medicinal texts.
- Turbellaria — mostly non-parasitic flatworms like the planarians found in freshwater.
- Cestoda — parasitic, ribbon-like worms like the tapeworm.
- Trematoda — parasitic worms better known as flukes.Monogenean — flatworms found on the skin, gills, and fins of fish.
- Annelids, ringed or segmented worms
- The name comes from the Latin word anellus which means “little ring”.
- A phylum of over 22,000 extant (still existing or not extinct) species.
- Annelids are also bilaterally symmetrical, but they are coelomates, unlike flatworms, and have a body cavity.
- Annelids are divided into two groups.
- Polychaetes — also known as bristle worms, this group classifies almost all marine annelids. The body segments of polychaetes have fleshy protrusions called parapodia. Parapodia have many bristles called chaete. There are over 10,000 species of polychaete, including the lugworm and the sandworm or clamworm.
- Oligochaetes — mostly terrestrial or land-dwelling annelids. Oligochaeta make up about half of the phylum annelida with around 10,000 known species. These worms usually have few chaetae or bristles on their outer body surfaces and lack parapodia, unlike polychaeta.
- Also known as roundworms.
- Constitutes the phylum of nematoda.
- Inhabits a broad range of environments.
- Taxonomically, they are classified with insects and other moulting animals.
- Unlike flatworms, nematodes have tubular digestive systems with openings at both ends.
- Even though an article in 1933 suggested that there may be 1 million species of nematodes, more recent fact-based research has estimated closer to 40,000 species of nematode.
- Also known as ribbon worms or proboscis worms.
- There are alternative names for the phylum Nemertea such as Nemertini, Nemertinea and Rhynchocoela.
- Most species of Nemertea are very slim, usually only a few millimeters wide, although a few have relatively short but wide bodies.
- Many Nemertea have patterns of yellow, orange, red and green coloration.
- Also known as spoon worms.
- A small group of marine animals.
- They are now considered to belong to the phylum annelida after years of being treated as a separate phylum.
- The majority of echiurans live in burrows under shallow water.
- Some echiurans live in rock crevices or under boulders.
- More than 230 species of echiurian have been described.
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the worms across 24 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Worms worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the worms which refer to various unrelated invertebrates that share the typical characteristics of having soft, slender, elongated, cylindrical-tubelike bodies. Worms are not classified as insects. Worms do not have limbs, nor appendages, except for the polychaete that has bristles or hair-like structures on the side of its body.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Worms Facts
- True or False?
- A Can of Worms
- Describing Worms
- Worm Bingo
- Correct Sketch
- Image Decoding
- Worm Crossword
- Worm Idioms
- Summarizing Knowledge
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Link will appear as Worms Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, October 17, 2019
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.