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A detritivorous animal of economic importance is
A. Leech
B. Earthworm
C. Fowl
D. Caterpillar larva

Last updated date: 16th Jul 2024
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Hint: Detritivores and decomposers contribute to the degradation of all dead and rotting material in every ecosystem.

Complete Answer:
- Detritivores feed on content from primary producers as well as herbivores and carnivores and are therefore present in the environment at all trophic stages. As well as absorbing energy from other species, detritivores are typically consumed by secondary consumers and are thus an important part of the energy cycle of the ecosystem.
- Not only is the recycling process an integral part of the decomposition process , it is important to remove dead material to avoid the spread of disease. In addition, detritivores that live inside the soil, e.g. earthworms, aerate and mix the soil with their movement, which is necessary for plant growth.
- The earthworm is a segmented worm, a terrestrial invertebrate belonging to the phylum Annelida. They are popular species of moist soil and feed on organic matter. Earthworms are generally referred to as a farmer's mate.
- This is because the worm casting (faecal deposit) increases fertility and burrowing helps to aerate the soil properly.

Earthworms are highly beneficial to agriculture. They are helping in the following ways:
- They help to loosen up and aerate the soil while they burrow deep. This helps to breathe the roots of the plants, helping them penetrate deeper and grow well.
- They are currently being used in vermiculture to manufacture high-quality manure.
- They are also used as bait for catching fish.
- They proceed to interchange the topsoil with the layer just below, increasing soil fertility.
- The excreta of earthworms is rich in nitrogen and is needed for plant development.

Thus the correct answer is option(B) Earthworm.

Note: Some detritivores incidentally concentrate toxic pollutants by feeding on sediments directly to extract the organic portion.