According to the Bangor Daily News, there have been over a dozen reports in recent years about "crazy worms".

The technical name for the worms is Amynthas agrestis, but they go by several other names including: Asian Crazy Worms, Snake Worms, and Alabama Jumping Worms.

Even though they may seem like normal earthworms, they are definitely not.  They lurk near the surface, eating all of the soil's organic material, and mixing up the soil to the point where it becomes the consistency of "coffee grounds".  Basically, they devour the nutrients and organic materials that plants use for food.

They are believed to have originally come from Japan or Korea.  Even though it is thought they have existed in Maine since the early 1900s, the first confirmed infestation (at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens) were not until 2012. Several more colonies were confirmed in 2014.

As they are "born pregnant" it only takes a couple of worms to start an infestation.

In order to avoid infestations on your property, Gary Fish, Maine’s state horticulturist, recommends knowing where new soil, compost, and manure are coming from.  Take a peek at the product before you allow it on your land.  He also recommends purchasing new plants that are "bare root stock" and adding your own sterilized potting soil.

If you have questions, you can reach out to him through email - horticulture@maine.gov

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