A reader wrote to us from West Plains Missouri about a nut he picked up from under an Oak tree that had small white worms inside of it. He wondered what kind of nut it is, what kind of worm it is, and what stage the creatures were at.
The picture he sent in shows a light brown, ping pong ball shaped nut sliced into two halves. The inside is a darker brown, and the center is filled with several tiny white larvae.
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Although the nut in the photo doesn’t exactly resemble a typical acorn, we believe that it is the core of the acorn without the shell. Since Oak trees produce acorns, this would be fitting.
We believe that our reader has discovered some acorn weevil larvae. Adult acorn weevil lay their eggs inside of acorns, and so acorn weevil larvae hatch inside of the nuts. Based on the photo, we believe these larvae are at an early stage of development. Acorn weevil larvae will eventually emerge from the nut and burrow into the ground. They will spend 1-2 years in the soil until they emerge and lay their own eggs.
Acorn weevil larvae are quite commonly associated with Oak trees, and there is a lot of information on them if our reader is interested in learning more!
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To conclude, our reader opened a nut by an Oak tree and found it full of little white creatures. We determined these to be acorn weevil larvae!