Square-dwelling worms (a misnomer coined by early 20th C. popularizers of natural history) have been sought for their novelty and rarity for over eight decades with the goal of reproducing this phenomenon in the laboratory. Square (and other geometrically shaped) holes are traditionally difficult to find in the field and, when exiting specimens are collected and identified, they tend to be (while all vermiform) a variety of known species, none of which have been observed to "square" their bodies. Studies, therefore, have been exercises in conjecture and therefore remain unpublished in peer-reviewed journals.
By-passing was largely ignored until Dr. Moon circulated more accurate drawings (Fig. 5)
depicting inconsistent hole perimeters, and the retired Neimeyer himself proposed a mechanism for nematodes to assist in hole shaping via by-passing (Fig. 6). This theory shared the spotlight with post-holing until Moon pointed out the absence of nematodes exiting the hole whenever a stationary worm was observed (though nematodes are frequently found entering a square hole).
HOW DO WE EXPLAIN IT?
The prevailing theory today explains both the hole shapes observed, as well as the long-noted re-entry of nematodes into the empty holes. The theory ties in interestingly with my own research into nematode piloting, with the exception that the livery animal is a worm. This explanation posits that the nematodes are only using worms for a one-way ride to the surface, having no efficient way to travel through packed soil. Depending on the alignment of nematodes (Fig. 7.),
What can be observed, however, is the return trip, widely captured by those patient enough to wait by their find. In a photo by graduate student Patti Michaels, a nematode is seen entering a "square" hole (Fig. 8).
Clearly there is more work to be done in explaining the presence of square worm holes, but it must be acknowledged that the scientific community has adapted admirably to new observations, however sparse and inconclusive they may be. Additional research on piloting with other livery species will be made available soon, and may shed some additional light on this perplexing phenomenon.
If you have additional research or questions about square worm holes, send an email to TheMermithidTruth@gmail.com. Please do not send support for post-holing or by-passing theory.