Down South, things are different.
OK, so in truth earthworms this size can be found in undisturbed soils in many parts of the country. I’d found them when I was a kid, both in the garden on the farm, occasionally, and more commonly out in the tussock country.
We’d found this one while doing some unscheduled maintenance of the water supply at the crib in Hawea: this was the most exciting find during several hours of digging (and as I have remarked elsewhere, if you want to find a buried pipe, dig at right angles to its direction if you want to actually find it – ok?).
As is customary, R₂ gave it a name – the very imaginative “Wormy” – and put it in its very own bucket of soil. And it really needed a whole bucket to itself too, all 40cm of it.
Worms really aren’t that exciting, I suppose, and it was forgotten about shortly afterwards. But I made sure to put it back close to where we found it, just before we left the crib for the farm.