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VOA慢速英语:蚯蚓会是下一个入侵的威胁吗?

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中英对照 听力原文

Just as North Americans became used seeing the lanternfly insect, there is another invasive animal population on the rise: the Asian jumping worm.

就在北美人习惯了看到灯笼蝇的时候,另一种入侵动物的数量也在上升:亚洲蚯蚓。

Its scientific name is Amynthas agrestis. But it is also known as "Alabama jumper," "Jersey wriggler," and "crazy worm." Unlike other usual North American earthworms, these highly active worms eat large amounts of humus.

它的学名是亚拉巴马跳蚯蚓。但它也被称为“阿拉巴马跳蚯蚓”、“泽西蠕虫”和“疯狂的蠕虫”。与其他常见的北美蚯蚓不同,这些高度活跃的蚯蚓吃大量腐殖质。

Humus is the rich, organic, and important top part of soil. It is critical to many ecosystems. All kinds of soil life need humus.

腐殖质指的是肥沃的、有机的和重要的表层土壤。它对许多生态系统都至关重要。各种土壤生物都需要腐殖质。

Plants and other soil life cannot survive without humus. It is also, however, a favorite food of the Asian jumping worm. And the insects "can eat all of it," wrote Susan Farmer of the United States Forest Service in a report published in May.

植物和其他土壤生物离开腐殖质就无法生存。然而,它也是亚洲蚯蚓最喜欢的食物。美国林业局的苏珊·法默在5月份发表的一份报告中写道,该昆虫“可以吃掉所有腐殖质”。

A decrease in humus would also threaten birds and other animals that depend on insects that live in soil for food.

腐殖质的减少也会威胁到鸟类和其他以生活在土壤中的昆虫为食的动物。

The worms are native to east-central Asia. They are believed to have been introduced to the United States in the late 1800s, likely arriving in transported plants. Their existence went largely unnoticed - or possibly underreported. But in the past ten years, scientists started to describe the Asian jumping worm as a problem, says Dr. Timothy McCay. He is a biology and environment professor at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York.

这种蠕虫原产于亚洲中东部。据信,它们是在19世纪末被引入美国的,很可能是通过运输的植物到达美国的。它们的存在在很大程度上被人们忽视了——或者可能被低估了。但在过去的十年里,科学家开始将亚洲蚯蚓当作一个问题,蒂莫西·麦凯博士说。他是纽约汉密尔顿科尔盖特大学的生物学和环境学教授。

Asian jumping worm populations are confirmed to be in 35 states across the U.S.

据证实,美国35个州都有亚洲蚯蚓。

Although its yearly life cycle ends in winter, the animal cocoons survive to produce a new generation in spring. McCay said their tiny eggs are nearly impossible to see in soil. But adult worms, which are about 8 to 20 centimeters long, are easy to see close to the surface.

尽管它的一年的生命周期在冬天结束,但这种动物的茧会存活下来,从而在春天产生新的一代。麦凯说,在土壤中几乎看不到它们的微小的卵。但成年蚯蚓大约有8到20厘米长,可以在靠近土壤表面的地方很容易被看到。

As they eat their way through the soil, the worms leave behind two things: cocoons and castings, or waste. The cocoons are very small and soil-colored, so they are easy to miss. However, the castings have a coffee-ground look that will let you know they are present.

当它们在土壤中觅食时,它们会留下两样东西:蚓茧和粪便。蚓茧很小,呈土色,所以人们很难看到。然而,粪便看起来像咖啡渣,你很容易就能看到。

The shiny worm can be either gray or brown. A thick line of white or light gray circles part of its long body. When touched, the worms quickly move from side to side, jump, and they may even move back and forth like the reptile the snake. McCay said that behavior, along with their ability to reproduce without mating, helps the species out populate its predators.

这种光滑发亮的蠕虫可能是灰色的,也可能是棕色的。一条白色或浅灰色的粗线环绕着它长长的身体。当被触碰时,这种蠕虫会迅速从一边跳到另一边,它们甚至可能会像爬行动物蛇一样来回移动。麦凯说,这种行为加上它们不交配就可以繁殖的能力帮助该物种摆脱了捕食者,从而使其数量不断增长。

McCay said predators like "Robins and other birds, shrews, garter snakes, and amphibians like toads may not be able to effectively suppress their populations."

麦凯说,诸如“知更鸟等鸟类、鼩鼱、花纹蛇和蟾蜍等两栖动物之类的捕食者可能无法有效地抑制它们的种群数量。”

McCay said "gardeners should do what they can to avoid spreading jumping worms to new areas." Because the worms usually move into forests from nearby gardens, he said, control in home and community gardens is necessary to slow their invasion into natural areas.

麦凯说:“园丁应该尽其所能避免把这种蚯蚓传播到新的区域。”他说,因为这种蠕虫通常会从附近的花园进入森林,所以有必要在家庭花园和社区花园进行控制,以减缓它们入侵自然区域的速度。

So during this season of plant dividing and changing plants, gardeners must pay attention. Look often for the worms' waste droppings. Look in the soil that stays on plant roots and in the ground surrounding them. In addition, McCay advises, do not place waste from infected gardens into nearby forests. Share only plants cleaned of soil only.

所以在这个植物分离和更换植物的季节,园丁们一定要注意。经常寻找这种蠕虫的排泄物。观察植物根部的土壤和植物根部周围的土壤。此外,麦凯建议,不要将受感染花园的垃圾放入附近的森林中。只分享清理过土壤的植物。

There are no good control measures available for established populations of jumping worms. But McCay said removing them by hand and dropping them into containers of vinegar will reduce their numbers. He knows of one gardener in Pennsylvania who removed 51,000 worms that way in 2021.

对于已经存在的蚯蚓,目前还没有很好的控制措施。但麦凯说,用手把它们清除,然后把它们扔进装有醋的容器里,会减少它们的数量。据他所知,宾夕法尼亚州的一名园丁在2021年用这种方法清除了5.1万只蚯蚓。

I'm Gregory Stachel.

格雷戈里·斯切尔报道。

Just as North Americans became used seeing the lanternfly insect, there is another invasive animal population on the rise: the Asian jumping worm.

Its scientific name is Amynthas agrestis. But it is also known as "Alabama jumper," "Jersey wriggler," and "crazy worm." Unlike other usual North American earthworms, these highly active worms eat large amounts of humus.

Humus is the rich, organic, and important top part of soil. It is critical to many ecosystems. All kinds of soil life need humus.

Plants and other soil life cannot survive without humus. It is also, however, a favorite food of the Asian jumping worm. And the insects "can eat all of it," wrote Susan Farmer of the United States Forest Service in a report published in May.

A decrease in humus would also threaten birds and other animals that depend on insects that live in soil for food.

The worms are native to east-central Asia. They are believed to have been introduced to the United States in the late 1800s, likely arriving in transported plants. Their existence went largely unnoticed - or possibly underreported. But in the past ten years, scientists started to describe the Asian jumping worm as a problem, says Dr. Timothy McCay. He is a biology and environment professor at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York.

Asian jumping worm populations are confirmed to be in 35 states across the U.S.

Although its yearly life cycle ends in winter, the animal cocoons survive to produce a new generation in spring. McCay said their tiny eggs are nearly impossible to see in soil. But adult worms, which are about 8 to 20 centimeters long, are easy to see close to the surface.

As they eat their way through the soil, the worms leave behind two things: cocoons and castings, or waste. The cocoons are very small and soil-colored, so they are easy to miss. However, the castings have a coffee-ground look that will let you know they are present.

The shiny worm can be either gray or brown. A thick line of white or light gray circles part of its long body. When touched, the worms quickly move from side to side, jump, and they may even move back and forth like the reptile the snake. McCay said that behavior, along with their ability to reproduce without mating, helps the species out populate its predators.

McCay said predators like "Robins and other birds, shrews, garter snakes, and amphibians like toads may not be able to effectively suppress their populations."

McCay said "gardeners should do what they can to avoid spreading jumping worms to new areas." Because the worms usually move into forests from nearby gardens, he said, control in home and community gardens is necessary to slow their invasion into natural areas.

So during this season of plant dividing and changing plants, gardeners must pay attention. Look often for the worms' waste droppings. Look in the soil that stays on plant roots and in the ground surrounding them. In addition, McCay advises, do not place waste from infected gardens into nearby forests. Share only plants cleaned of soil only.

There are no good control measures available for established populations of jumping worms. But McCay said removing them by hand and dropping them into containers of vinegar will reduce their numbers. He knows of one gardener in Pennsylvania who removed 51,000 worms that way in 2021.

I'm Gregory Stachel.

 

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Words in This Story

worm - n. a long, thin animal that has a soft body with no legs or bones and that often lives in the ground

cycle - n. a set of events or actions that happen again and again in the same order

cocoon - n. a covering usually made of silk which some insects (such as caterpillars) make around themselves to protect them while they grow

species - n. a group of animals or plants that are similar and can produce young animals or plants

predator - n. an animal that lives by killing and eating other animals

garden - n. an area of ground where plants (such as flowers or vegetables) are grown

vinegar - n. a sour liquid that is used to flavor or preserve foods or to clean things


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