The photo above was sent to us accompanied by these questions: “What kind of reptile is this one? Is it a snake or a worm? Is it dangerous?” All we know about the specimen is what we can deduce from the photograph. It is thin, several inches long, lustrous, and probably dark green or brown.
Our reader first inquired what kind of reptile this is. Reptiles are a group of animals that have three common characteristics. They all have scaly skin, are “cold-blooded”, and do not have a larval stage when they are young. Snakes are reptiles, but worms are not. Based on the photo, we think this is probably a worm, not a snake, but we will try to further identify this creature. There are several species of worms that this could be.
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Our first thought is that this might be a hammerhead worm. It looks to be about the same size, color, and texture as other hammerhead worms we have seen. However, it lacks the characteristic triangle-shaped head. Unless the photo simply doesn’t show the proper head shape of this creature, we don’t think it is a hammerhead worm. Our next thought is that this might be an earthworm. We gravitate towards this because our readers find earthworms in their homes pretty often, and some earthworms are dark colored and several inches long. The worm in the photo doesn’t appear to be segmented, and it looks too dark, but we suppose this still might be an earthworm.
Without a firm identification, we can only speculate if this creature is dangerous or poisonous, but we lean towards saying it isn’t harmful. The majority of worms are not poisonous, and are actually extremely beneficial and crucial to the environment. We suggest that our reader gently encourage this worm to go outside by sweeping it out with a broom. To end, we were unable to identify the creature in the photograph. However, we believe it is probably a worm, not a snake. We hope our reader is able to sweep this specimen outside and part ways with it for good!
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