A reader just asked to identify a creature that she found on her toilet seat. She is a little up in arms about it because she has two young children and hopes it isn’t harmful. The photo shows a very tiny brown worm-like organism. It has the same proportions as a tic tac, but is a bit smaller, and it looks like it might have antenna, but we cannot tell for certain. What could this be?
First of all, we don’t believe this is a parasite, or anything that could be harmful to her children. However, if they start to show symptoms, we recommend she take them to get looked at by a medical professional.
ATTENTION: GET PARASITE HELP NOW! At All About Worms we get a lot of questions about skin parasites, blood parasites, and intestinal parasites in humans. Because we can't diagnose you, we have put together this list of doctors and labs who understand and specialize in dealing with parasites in humans! That resource is HERE
Now back to the specimen in question. We aren’t able to make a definite identification, but we have some suggestions.
First, we believe it might be a carpet beetle larva. We don’t see the hairs that we usually use to identify a carpet beetle larva, but the color and shape are similar. We might not be able to see the hairs because of the photo quality. Also, we don’t know how a carpet beetle larva would end up on a toilet seat. These little guys don’t love moisture, but it could have been attached to a shirt, towel, or other linen material and ended up on the toilet seat.
If this isn’t a carpet beetle larva, it might be a slug. We can’t see many details or textures, but it looks like this specimen might have the two antennae that a slug has, and it is similar in shape. Again, we aren’t sure how a slug would end up on a toilet seat, but it could be a similar situation as the carpet beetle larva. More specifically, it could have been dragged or dropped there by accident.
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While we aren’t sure exactly what this critter is, we don’t think our reader should stress about it. Since she only discovered one of these guys, she probably isn’t dealing with an infestation of any kind. It is much more likely that the creature ended up on the toilet seat by mistake or by chance.
If she finds more of these organisms, we suggest our reader take a photo that zooms in more on the details of the worm in question.