Taming Worms? Eh?

“Do you know if anyone ‘tamed’ their worms to become pets, i.e. gained a reaction such that the worms actually respond (positively) to human contact?  This is a genuine question, as if it is possible I would like to experiment with the notion.

I’m sure I am not your only home reader who finds the sight of these wriggling creatures both amusing and in a sense endearing. And, as with other animals for which humans take on responsibility for their health and welfare, they find a place in one’s life, albeit at present a totally impersonal one. I am only a humble home worm keeper, using the worm farm to dispose of food and related scraps so as to save on landfill garbage which gives off greenhouse gases. Best wishes” ~ Brian

Hi Brian

Well, it’s the last newsletter of the year and the season of giving – so I figured ‘why not GIVE our readers a bit of a chuckle? 🙂

I can honestly say that I have never heard of anyone ‘taming’ their worms, and would indeed be greatly surprised to learn that this was even possible at all (something I highly doubt).

Don’t get me wrong – I am a really open-minded guy, but I also know that while worms DO have a fairly well-developed nervous system (providing them with a keen sensitivity to light, touch and chemicals), the closest thing they’ve got to a ‘brain’ as we know it is their ‘cerebral ganglion’, which pales in comparison to say the least.

As such, I can’t imagine that worms would have the ‘memory’ or higher brain function in general required for taming.

I would certainly love to hear about any experiments you set up to test this though!

Finding worms endearing and amusing, or even thinking of them as pets on the other hand is almost inevitable once you spend enough time with them.

My wife jokes with me (and others) that I’ve reached the point of actually naming all my worms. This of course absurd (I gave up after the first 100), but the worms have certainly become more than just compost-makers to me. I find myself checking with customers to make sure they’ve set up a good ‘home’ for the worms ahead of time, and sometimes following-up to see how the worms are doing. 🙂

Anyway, Brian – I know I may not have answered this question to your satisfaction, but who knows – perhaps there are some others (‘worm trainers’ perhaps?) out there reading this newsletter who will have more to add to this discussion.

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