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Worm

This article is about animals known as worms. There is also an article about computer worms.
A worm is any of numerous relatively small elongated soft-bodied invertebrate animals. The most famous is the earthworm, a member of phylum Annelida, but there are hundreds of thousands of different species that live in a wide variety of habitats other than soil.

Originally, the word referred to any creeping or a crawling animal of any kind or size, such as a serpent, caterpillar, snail, or the like. Later this definition was narrowed to the modern definition which still includes several different animal groups. Some of these are from the phyla: Annelida, Chaetognatha, Nematoda ("roundworms"), Nemertea and Platyhelminthes ("flatworms"). Many insect larvae are also called "worms".

The night crawler[?] (Latin name Lumbricus terrestris) is very similar to the common garden worm[?].

"Worm" phyla include:

  • Acanthocephala - Spiny headed (Thorny headed) worms
  • Aeschelminthes - "round worms" (includes the phyla Nematoda, Rotifera, Gastrotricha, Kinorhyncha, Nematomorpha, and Priapulida
  • Annelida - Segmented worms without setae -- including earthworms
  • Chaetognatha -- Arrow Worms
  • Echiura -- Spoon Worms
  • Gastrotricha --
  • Gnathostomulida -- Jaw worms
  • Hemichordata -- Acorn worms (chordates)
  • Kinorhyncha
  • Nematoda -- Ribbon worms
  • Onychophora -- "Velvet worms" (Arthropods or close relatives thereof)
  • Platyhelmintha -- flatworms
  • Pogonophora -- Beard Worms.
  • Polychaeta -- segmented worms with setae
  • Priapulida
  • Sipuncula -- "Peanut Worms"
  • Rotifera
  • Urochordata - Tunicate worms (possibly chordates)
  • Vestimentifera

Worm is also a Nordic word for a dragon (also spelled "Wyrm").



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