Politics, Sex, Religion, and all those impolite Human Conversations...

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Location: Oaksterdam, California

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Swinging in the Rain

Cecil Adams answers the age old question:

Why do worms crawl out onto the sidewalk after it rains?
Sure, worms are hermaphroditic, having both male and female organs. Not wanting to sensationalize this, I quote from the encyclopedia: "Two worms mate with their heads pointed in opposite directions." You thought only we humans had a sexual practice like this. Uh-uh, bub. Us and the worms. Getting back to business. "Both worms secrete mucus, covering each other with a 'slime tube'. . . . Sperm are released and carried in grooves, now formed into tubes by the adjoining slime-covered worm, to the sperm receptacles of the partner. The worms then separate. Later [each worm] secretes a mucous ring, which slides forward over the worm's body, gathering several eggs from the oviducts and sperm from the receptacles as it does. Fertilization takes place within the mucous ring, which slips off the front of the worm, closing at both ends to form a capsule," from which one or two worms hatch a few weeks later.

(Via Fark)