What are leeches?

Leeches belong to the genus ringworms and are related to earthworms. There are around 600 different species in the world. Leeches are very sensitive and can only survive and survive in humid environments and in very clean waters. You can find them in ponds, pools and streams with a lot of plant growth. Worldwide you can find them mainly in Europe, North Africa and Asia Minor. Most species live in fresh water.

The three types of medicinal use: the Northern European Hirudo medicinalis, the Asian Hirudo orientalis and Hirudo verbana from the regions around the Black Sea. In Europe, the Hirudo medicinalis and Hirudo verbana are mainly used.



The leech has a suction cup on both ends of the body. The rear one is slightly larger and is used for holding on. The mouth with the biting tools is in the front suction cup. When hungry, adult leeches are 5 to 10 centimeters long and about one centimeter in diameter.
The back drawing of the Hirudo medicinalis is medium to dark green and has orange to red patterns. The leeches are spotted black on the belly and the sides have a typical teardrop pattern. The Hirudo verbana is somewhat darker than the Hirudo medicinalis, has an olive-green belly and two black stripes on the sides.

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