Project Overview

Field Ecology of Earthworms

Faculty Sponsor

Tim McCay (


Environmental Studies


Earthworm communities in the Northeast consist of a mix of native species and exotic species from Europe and Asia. Although we know a great deal about exotic species from Europe, we know relatively little about the other two groups of species. This work aims to fill gaps in our understanding of native earthworms and Asian exotic species in the pheretimoid group. The work will include a mix of field and lab data collection and data analysis. Some of the field work will occur in remote locations, and some short-term travel is required.

Student Qualifications

Applicants should be curious about animal ecology and physiology. Prior coursework in organismal biology (e.g., BIOL 181) is beneficial but is not required. Students should be comfortable handling earthworms and spending time in the field, including time during adverse conditions (e.g., hot, rainy).

Number of Student Researchers

4 students

Project Length

10 weeks

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If you have questions, please contact Karyn Belanger (