Given that there are more than thousands of different species and more than a handful of different phyla that are categorized under the umbrella term of “worms”, you may wonder if worms have a face and what it resembles.
Given their dimensions, it would be reasonable to assume that it does not look like a human face.
However, that does not necessarily mean they don’t have a face if we consider what makes a face a face.
Yes and no, some types of worms do have something that could be described as a face because they have certain features that you would associate with being part of a face, like a mouth. But no, they do not have the many facial features that we associate with a face. Worms have no eyes or ears, for example.
In the following post, we are going to elaborate on this subject a little further and answer some fascinating questions about worms and their facial features.
Do earthworms have faces?
Yes, as we established at the outset, some worms have faces, based on the features they have that most people would be considered to be a face.
They don’t have faces that work the same way as humans, but as there are features that act like eyes, ears, and a mouth, they could be considered faces.
You may wonder what is different about the faces that worms have.
Their mouths do not have teeth but are muscular and very strong and can grab, pull on and suck food into their bodies.
Worms enjoy a varied diet that includes some living organisms, dead animals and a lot of soil and decaying vegetation.
The ears are not ears in the traditional sense, because rather than picking up sounds, they detect vibrations.
Do worms have two eyes?
Some worms have features that function similarly to eyes.
These are not eyes but are called light receptors that they can use to sense when it is light and when it is dark.
These receptors allow worms to know whether they are moving around over the ground or underground.
I heard worms have two faces, is this true?
While it may be possible to consider that a worm has something that resembles a face, two faces is a bit of a stretch.
You may have heard that some people think that worms may have not just one face, but two faces.
This stems from the fact that, to the untrained eye, it looks like there is not much difference between the front end and the back end of worms.
However, while it may not seem like it, they have very distinctive heads and tails.
The worm’s head and “face” is always found at the end nearest to the swollen band that is called the clitellum.
Are There Any Worm Species with A Face and Facial Features?
Not exactly, as we have discussed.
Their eyes are not eyes but are light receptor cells which detect light.
They don’t have ears and can’t hear anything, but their bodies are equipped with the ability to detect vibrations of animals and anything else they need to be aware of.
They have sensitive skin which makes up for many of the functions that a face provides many other animals and humans, such as breathing and light detection.
Can Worms Regenerate Their Heads?
Worms are designed to regrow tissue they have lost and can survive when they lose certain body parts.
The clitellum is the specific part that helps them to do it.
This swollen gland sits just underneath their head and if the worm’s body is cut below it, the worm can regenerate any tissue they have lost.
However, according to common misconceptions, one worm will not grow into two separate worms when it is cut in half.
The head half of a worm can survive and can regenerate, but the other half, the tail part will die. So, technically, no a worm cannot regenerate their head or face. If this area is cut from the earthworm’s body, the worm will die.
Do Worms Have More Than One Brain?
Yes, most earthworms worms actually have 2 brains.
Although, it’s important to note that they are not especially complex.
Each of a worm’s brains sits next to their other organs and connect their nerves to their muscles and skin, to control how the worm moves and feels.
Can Worms Use Their Head’s to Think?
As we noted above though some worms have as many as 2 brains, they are simple.
They can coordinate movement and register pain, but they can’t form and execute critical thinking like human beings.
The nerves that connect to the brains are able to detect vibrations, light and, in some cases, tastes and send signals to their muscles which move in response.
However, their brains are designed to only go so far.
For instance, in addition to being unable to manage complicated activities like critical thinking and emotions.
How Do Worms Clean Out Their Blood?
This is an interesting question to consider. As worms are only small and have simplistic bodies, they do not have kidneys.
However, they do have something that performs the same job – the nephridia.
The nephridia filters out waste and dead cells that collect up into the worm’s blood.
The waste that is flushed out by the nephridia goes through the same hole as its digestive wastes.
Interestingly, although a worm’s urine is a lot more diluted than a human’s, it still has urea and ammonia.
Hearts and Heartbeats
You may wonder how many hearts do worms have? After all, there are a lot of animals with more than one heart.
Interestingly, worms actually have five hearts. However, much like the other parts of a worm’s body, these hearts are not nearly as complex as hearts belonging to humans and other animals.
Instead, the five structures that are similar to, but simpler forms of hearts are called aortic arches and are used to pump the worm’s blood around its body.
Could Worms Drown?
Last but not least, we want to close out this post about worms with a fact that you might thing has to do with their face…breathing and breathing underwater. A worm’s skin is actually responsible for breathing, not a nose on their face (worms don’t have a nose).
Their bodies mean they can sometimes survive for many weeks underwater because they can absorb oxygen through their skin from the water, (rather than breathing through a nose on a face). Though they like to stay moist, they can’t swim and will eventually drown if they stay in the water too long.
How long it takes depends on the species of worm and the oxygen content of the water.