Earthworms have not defined an exception to the concept of controlled cultivation. The breeding of worms in captivity has been known since ancient times, although in a very primitive way: a certain concentration of worms was observed in a certain place, excrement was deposited and they observed that the worms did not disperse from the feeding zone. As crops were fertilized with raw excrement, worms were concentrated in these areas. It was observed that the fruits of these crops were of better quality and more abundant, and also withstood better the attack of plagues. In this way, several species have been tested for captive breeding, with greater or lesser success.
But what is understood by worms from the agricultural point of view? Earthworms are worms, but not all worms are earthworms. In a generalist and even vulgar manner, all invertebrate animal organisms that apparently crawl on a substrate, either liquid, semi-solid or solid, are known as worms. Worms are also the planarians, very primitive animals. Nematodes and their relatives (phylogenetically speaking), pseudocoelomates, are also worms. Also the larvae of many insects (e.g. caterpillars).
But strictly speaking, worms are annelid invertebrates, with segmented and metamerized bodies, which means that the body is a succession of rings, in each of which some structures are repeated (nerve ganglia, muscles, nephridial kidneys, etc.). Earthworms can live in the sea, in fresh water or adapted to terrestrial systems with high humidity. The three major groups of worms are polychaetes (the vast majority, marine), oligochaetes (mostly freshwater, or terrestrial) and hirudinea or leeches (marine, freshwater and even terrestrial).
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