You can buy these earthworms, because they are particularly good at rapidly processing organic waste into nutrient-rich compost, but the ones that turned up in our bin got there under their own steam. They have several alternative names such as Brandling Worm, Red Wiggler Worm, Manure Worm and Trout Worm, but the stripes make it a bit of a no-brainer for me. They have huge appetites, and live in rotting vegetation or manure but rarely soil. Tiger Worms are used in the processing of industrial organic waste too, and are currently being tested for use in flushless toilets in India. When threatened these worms emit a pungent liquid as a deterrent.
Photo Neil Griffin