Earthworm study by Prof. Travis Longcore featured in L.A. Times

School News

Earthworm study by Prof. Travis Longcore featured in L.A. Times

October 12, 2016

The Los Angeles Times recently ran a story on an “earthworm invasion” of the U.S. Navy-owned San Clemente Island, which is 75 miles northwest of San Diego and previously believed to be earthworm-free. 

 

The “invasion” was the focus of a study by a team including USC Architecture Assistant Professor Travis Longcore. Longcore’s team, which involved members from the USC Spatial Sciences Institute and Oklahoma State University, surveyed the distribution of the earthworms on the island and concluded that the invasion is in an early stage, likely begun when the island’s main road was paved with topsoil from the mainland in 2008-2009.

 

The invasion of earthworms in this earthworm-free region is a major concern. The worms alter the soil and microbial communities where they dwell, laying the groundwork for invasions of nonnative plants that would alter the island’s unique ecosystem and threaten biodiversity there, said Travis Longcore.

 

Read the full article here.

 

Read more about Professor Longcore & team’s study here and here.