Worm Life Cycle
Cocoons may contain 3 to as many as 9 baby wigglers. 3 to 4 is most common. The cocoons are tiny, like a small grape pip. They are oblong like a lemon and initially light yellow and deepen to maroon as the eggs develop. Under ideal conditions the tiny whitish babies (1/4th of an inch) will emerge in 21 to 28 days.Adult can produce 3 to 4 cocoons each week.
These juveniles darken quickly and will eat constantly. In approximately 40 to 60 days they will develop the clitellum (or saddle) which contains their reproductive organs. When that turns orangish they are ready to reproduce.
Worms are hermaphrodites, producing both eggs and sperm but they need another worm to reproduce. Two worms will join and transfer sperm then they separate and move on. Later each worm will release a band containing eggs from their clitellum. As they backout of the band the eggs are fertilized and the band closes into a cocoon.
Adults may live as long as 5 years.