This may be a question that keeps you up at night, or perhaps you're just the curious type? Just how do earthworms get oxygen when it is quite apparent they do not have a nose? Sometimes, science is stranger than fiction and the animal world is always full of surprises as in this case. Read and discover the wonders of nature contained in this simple and important cog of the ecological world.
Earthworms need very special circumstances in which to live, one of which is humid conditions must exist for their skin not to dry out, which would cause a rather quick death. Earthworms do not have lungs as humans and many other animals have, instead, earthworms respire through their skin, and they must coat themselves in mucus to allow dissolved oxygen to pass into their bloodstream. Like most all land-based animals, earthworms cannot breathe underwater, so when you see them emerge from the ground after a deluge of rain, they are merely trying to find oxygen to breathe just like any other animal would. Also worms come out of the ground after it rains because they can. They need humid conditions so thats why there are always worms on the ground after the rainwater dries.
Invertebrates, of which earthworms are members, have pores on their skin that take in the oxygen. Once it is in their bodies, the earthworms have a circulatory system which carries the oxygen to all parts of their bodies. Earthworms are like humans in that they prefer warm weather, and will hibernate in cold conditions. In freezing conditions, an earthworm will most likely not survive for very long.
While earthworms do not breathe as many other animals, they are an important part of the ecology in many parts of the planet, not to mention, they are great to catch and use if you're a fisherman. So feel free to use this information next time you play Trivial Pursuit, and amaze your family and friends with the depth of your knowledge of our animal kingdom.