Bob Skinner kindly drew my attention to the following story, from the Mail Online web site a few days ago. The original story (follow the link below) includes a video and photographs. `It looked like a snake!` Chinese man finds 19-inch long EARTHWORM in his backyard (and now plans to raise it himself)
An earthworm measuring half a metre in length has stunned neighbours after being found in the gutter outside a house. Li Zhiwei, a worker from the Forestry Bureau of Binchuan County, was putting some dates out to dry in his backyard when he spotted the massive invertebrate.
`It looked like a snake. I looked carefully and found it was actualy a huge earthworm.` he said He plans to raise the worm at his house.
According to www.kplctv.com biologists intend to study the soil-dweller to determine its classification and understand why it has been able to grow so long in a built up area. An earthworm`s size is closely related to its environment. They tend to grow longer during humid seasons if they absorb the right nutrition and have no natural enemies. Depending on the species, an adult earthworm grow to anything grow to anything from 10mm long and 1mm wide to 3m long and more than 25mm across. (1)
The second story was passed onto me by Nick Sucik in an e-mail to me way back on 27th December 2009 and is about an extract from the book Pictures in prose of nature, wild sport and humble life (1894), by the stupendously named Aubyn Bernard Rochfort Trevor-Battye who lived in Kent during the early part of his life. [Have you noticed how all the bad rulers in the world have short names, e.g. Adolf Hitler, Mao-Tse tung, Joe Stalin,etc,etc, however I digress!!] Here it is:
“The country folk in certain parts are firmly persuaded that the adder as it grows old develops a pair of wings and flies about. They quite believe that they have seen it flying. This diabolical accomplishment intensifies the terrors of the “death-arder”. Everything that creeps and looks like a snake is a death adder. The idea arose in the church, by mistake for “deaf adder,” long years before the School Board came (2)
- A.B.R. Trevor-Battye Pictures in prose…p. 239 and Flying Snake 4 (in preparation.)
Flying Snake issue 2 pp 30-36 has an article ` The Weird Weird Weird World of Worm Anomalies ` which mentions that the record British earthworm was 13 feet long,which seems ridiculously long in comparision to our Chinese chum. Talking of Flying Snake, the cover price will increase to £3.99 from £3 (because of the recent increase in the postage costs) when issue 4 comes out this October/November. But if you are a serious cryptozoologist you`ll be prepared to pay a serious price for a serious magazine