How many species of earthworm are there in the UK?

In the UK we have 27 species of earthworms, that are grouped into three ecological types:

Surface dwelling earthworms (Epigeic earthworms) which live on the surface of the soil. They live in leaf litter and in composting detritus, which they consume rapidly. They are usually bright red, reddish-brown or striped.

An epigeic earthworm, an endogeic earthworm and anecic earthworm.

Shallow burrowing or topsoil earthworms (Endogeic earthworms) are pale coloured, pink, grey, green or even blue. Topsoil worms make horizontal impermanent burrows as they move around.

Deep burrowing earthworms (Anecic earthworms) are the UK’s most common earthworms. They are the largest species, reddish brown, and they make permanent vertical burrows. They feed on leaves on the soil surface that they drag into their burrows.

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