No worms! Hiding from heat or are these centipedes (? might be millipedes) eating them.
A garden that was really overgrown - was well maintained then have not done anything to it for a couple of years - working on sorting it out at the moment.
I know in the past I have seen quite a few earthworms -but this year I haven't seen a single worm. (I know -I am worm phobic so look for them and avoid them and won't touch earth without gloves on - just looking at them wriggle from a distance makes me shiver.)
The soil is still mainly loose/aerated in the borders, was under a thick layer of rotted fallen leaves, seems like quite good soil - lots of organic matter, signs that it has been supplemented with homemade compost in the past. (There was a couple of compost bins and I find peach stones and the odd fruit label.)
It has hardly rained here for weeks and weeks so is very dry but was dampish under the rotted leaves -not wet but not dust dry. Also I am trying to revive the lawn - (was overgrown, cut back and scarified there are lots of gaps so have over planted lawn seed and fed it) so have been watering it in the evenings - not soaking it but making it damp - and even pulling up dandelion roots - have not seen a single worm.
What I have seen quite a few of are pale yellow/cream centipedes (I think they are are -not millipedes but will try and get a photo of one of them and post later.) They are quite low down in the soil -never really seen (or at least noticed) them before.
I am worried they are/have been eating the worms ....I might not like worms but I do know that they are good for the soil. Does that sound possible/likely? Or are the worms just hiding from the heat? Is anyone else suffering a dearth of worms?
If these centipedes are eating the worms - I think I should be trying to get rid of them -picking them out and killing them? - not leaving them. I would probably do it on the off chance but something has been breaking up the soil and without worms these seem like the only possible candidates.