“Is this an earthworm that I found in my toilet?” is all this reader writes in his submission. The “earthworm” he is referring to is the long, red-striped worm in the photo below, which is a screenshot from one of the two videos our reader sent in.
To answer our reader’s question right off the bat, yes, this is indeed an earthworm. To be more specific, this is a red wiggler. Otherwise known as red worms or tiger worms, red wigglers are compost worms that, like every other species of earthworm, eat decomposing organic matter and consequently turn it into nutrient-rich fertilizer through digestion and excretion. A fun fact about the red wiggler is that when picked up, it will wiggle violently, which often startles people. Is it this characteristic behavior that gives the red wiggler its name. Funnily enough, although our reader accidentally finds this wiggler in his toilet, many put these in their toilets on purpose. To be clear, they put them in their compost toilets, since red wigglers are especially effective at breaking down faeces.
This red wiggler likely found its way into our reader’s toilet accidentally. They do not purposefully infest homes, nor do they pose any threat to human or animal health. What their presence can indicate is a burst/leaking pipe (as this could be the point of entry for red wigglers, who live underground) or an excessive build up of organic matter in the toilet. That is to say, a toilet that has gone uncleaned for a long period of time can attract creatures, such as this red wiggler, which are already residing in the sewage system. If our reader suspects they have a leak, they can call a plumber to come look at the problem. Otherwise, all our reader can do is move this worm outside (preferably to a pond or lake, if possible) and ensure that he sanitizes his toilet and bathroom on a regular basis.
In conclusion, the worm our reader found in his toilet is a red wiggler. These little guys are not dangerous, so our reader has nothing to fear. That said, there could potentially be a leak in his pipes somewhere that needs fixing, or it could mean that the toilet has been neglected in terms of its cleaning. Either way, we hope that the information provided in this article proves helpful to our reader and we wish him the very best!
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