“Found this on my bedding”, states this reader in the Philippines regarding the clear-white organisms with dark insides pictured below. “Help please! I don’t know if I will be needing an extermination team for this.”
“I am thinking a moth burrowed itself into my comforter or mattress”, she continues. “I’m not sure. Got rid of all my beddings, to no avail. But, after two nights I noticed some things. It only comes out at night. Usually I find it under my blanket near my foot. I saw two more crawling on the floors and walls, and one near the window. One on the side of the wall. They curl up when in contact. The outside of my room has plant pots. Not sure if that is a factor.”
First, we want to thank our reader for the excellent picture, as well as the context she provided. It helps a lot when we are trying to identify the organism. Secondly, we think that this might be a flea larva. What has us thinking this is the coloration (or lack thereof) of the worm: flea larvae tend to have whitish transparent skin, with their dark entrails visible.
The only thing that makes us doubt this is the organism’s clear segmentation, as this is not common for flea larvae. For that reason, we want to clarify that its identity is still somewhat uncertain, and if any of our other readers have any alternative ideas as to what these might be, they are welcome to share their ideas in the comments section below.
In any case, flea larvae are not to be feared. Unlike their adult counterparts, flea larvae do not feed on the blood of mammals. We should also note that the common adult flea does not feed on humans. However, if our reader has any pets, then she should make sure she takes them to the vet to check —and potentially treat— them for fleas.
Flea larvae feed on hair, faeces, dead insects, and other organic debris. It is therefore not entirely uncommon to find them on bed sheets and other places where a lot of dead organic matter is left behind. To get rid of them, our reader will want to launder her bed sheets, as well as any places where her pets (should she have some) tend to sit/lie. In addition to this, vacuuming her home several times a week for a minimum of two weeks will help eliminate any eggs and roaming larvae.
To conclude, the worms our reader has been finding on her bedding and around her home are likely flea larvae, though they could be something else. We hope this article helps and we wish her the very best.