Lepidopteran Caterpillars Cause Swelling

A reader approached us with a question about a literal brush with nature. While outside, she accidentally brushed her ankle against a caterpillar. Very quickly, she noticed her ankle swelling. She’s curious what type of caterpillar this might be, and has sent in a picture to help us identify it. Continue reading [...]

Dead Worms on Window Sill Likely Black Worms (aka Mudworms)

We recently received a query from a reader in London who keeps finding dead creatures on her windowsills and shutters. These creatures look like long black worms, and may be coming into her basement apartment through a gap in the sealant on her window. She has found them to be anywhere from one inch to several inches long. Interestingly, she has never encountered one of these in a living state. She would like to know what these are. Continue reading [...]

Caterpillar in Bed is a Mystery

While a lot of us let our cats or dogs sleep in bed with us, it’s unlikely there is anyone who wants any sort of worm in their bed. Unfortunately, that is exactly the situation that one reader has encountered. Continue reading [...]
Schistosoma or blood fluke. Photo by David Williams (via Wikimedia Commons)

Some Black Worms Can Live in the Human Body

Today, we answer an inquiry from a gentleman asking if black worms live in the human body. The answer depends on what he is referring to with the words “black worm.” Continue reading [...]
Carpet Beetle

“Worms” near Catfood are Likely Carpet Beetle Larvae

We received a plea from a reader who has been having problems with teeny tiny worms hanging out near her cat’s dry cat food. Though she is not necessarily seeing them in the food, they definitely seem to congregate there. She also notes, interestingly, that they excrete a grey, dust-like substance. Continue reading [...]
Little Guy on Corner of Toilet Paper Crop

Critter in the Bathroom is Probably a Beetle Larva

We received these pictures from a woman who found the little critter in her bathroom sink and photographed it on a corner of a piece of toilet paper. She reports that it moves like an inchworm, its head appears large for its body, and that it has many tiny legs. In addition to finding the little guy creepy, she is concerned that it may be related to a recent lice epidemic in her child’s school. Continue reading [...]