“Not sure what these worms are that I found in my pool after heavy rain,” states this reader in Florence, South Carolina. The worms in question appear to be a pinkish-red color, and are 1-2-inches in length and very thin, according to our reader.
At first glance, we assumed these were earthworms. This was based on the first photo she sent of the lone worm (above). Its coloration and slimy appearance indicated this, as well as the fact that the worms appeared after heavy rain (which earthworms tend to do). However, after we saw the second picture (below), we started to entertain the idea that these might be tubifex worms. Regardless if they are earthworms or tubifex worms, our reader has nothing to fear, as both of these species are completely harmless.
Earthworms are beneficial contributors to the well-being and maintenance of the environment. They eat decomposing organic matter, such as leaf litter and animal waste, and convert it to nutrient-rich fertilizer.
Tubifex worms are a species of ‘bloodworms’, which is an umbrella term which encompasses any worm-like creature that produces an excess amount of a hemoglobin-like molecule. This molecule lets them sustain in low-level oxygen level environments for an extended period of time. All of that is a fancy way of saying that they are very red. Like earthworms, they too feed on decomposing organic matter.
What makes us think that these might be tubifex worms, rather than earthworms, is the fact that, in the second picture, they are all writhing together in one large group. While this is a key characteristic of tubifex worms, earthworms do not do this, generally speaking. That is not to say that earthworms cannot be found in groups, but they do not tend to climb over each other in the same way that tubifex worms do.
Both of these types of worms can often be found in or near bodies of water, especially those that are filled with organic debris, so their presence may be an indicator that our reader’s pool needs cleaning. In fact, by ensuring that her pool remains clean, our reader would discourage worms from entering her pool. Likewise, if she does not already have a cover for her pool, then we recommend getting one, as they can be helpful in preventing all kinds of creatures, trash, or other things from falling into one’s pool.
Of course, if she does have a cover, and her pool is clean, then there might be another issue. Perhaps there is a leak somewhere in the pipe from which the pool gets its water, and it is through this leak that the worms are finding their way into the pool. In that case, only a professional could deal with something like this, and we would urge our reader to contact one.
In conclusion, the worms that our reader found in her pool could either be earthworms or tubifex worms, though we are leaning more toward the latter possibility. We hope this article helps and that our reader’s pool will be worm-free soon! We wish her the very best.