I get a lot of questions about invasive species, and lately a week doesn’t go by without at least one asking what to do about so-called crazy worms or Asian jumping worms, which more and more of us are alarmed to be finding in our garden soil. I sought a researcher’s perspective on this really challenging and frankly terrifying pest.
Brad Herrick is Arboretum Ecologist and Research Program Manager at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum, where the staff first noticed the destructive handiwork of Asian jumping worms in 2013. He’s been studying them ever since. Though our understanding of these organisms is in the very early stages, we talked about their biology, their impact, and what control tactics are being explored by scientists seeking a solution.