“I found this worm on my sink, what is it?” is all Shelley writes in her submission regarding the long, thin, dark-colored worm pictured below. Unfortunately, the photo is of a poor resolution, and the lighting is also poor, meaning that it is impossible for us to make out the finer details of the creature’s physical characteristics. Because of this, it becomes very difficult for us to identify the organism based on its appearance, and without any context, it becomes virtually impossible.
With all of that said, we will say that, given that this critter showed up in Shelley’s sink, it likely came up through her drain. For that reason, we assume it could be some underground-dwelling organism that found its way into the piping through a crack. In that case, Shelley would be experiencing a leak. She can look out for signs of a leak by paying attention to changes in water pressure, inconsistent water temperature, and/or foul-tasting or smelling water. Now, with this in mind, maybe the worm is some type of bloodworm, given that it can sustain life in low-oxygen conditions. Bloodworms produce an excess amount of hemoglobin, which allows them to survive such conditions, and which usually gives them a red coloration. This organism does not seem to be red, but it is also hard to tell due to the poor resolution of the photo.
Equally, we suppose this could be a horsehair worm, which would actually match with this worm’s shape and coloration. Horsehair worms take insects as hosts, forming a parasitic relationship with them. When the horsehair worm has fully matured inside the host, it bursts forth, killing the host and free to roam the Earth. Maybe an infected insect crawled down the sink before the horsehair worm decided to erupt from its body and crawl back up? In any case, we recommend Shelly simply move the organism outside, and that she avoid physical contact with it: this is safe practice when it comes to handling any unknown organisms, as one does not know it could potentially harm them.
To conclude, we are not sure what this worm is that Shelley found in her sink. It looks like it could be a horsehair worm, though it could perhaps even be a bloodworm. If she wants a second opinion, we suggest taking the worm to her local county extension office. Otherwise, we hope something in his article helps. We wish her the very best!
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