“I found a long, small, black worm while I was showering”, writes Kylee about the creature pictured below. “It’s the only one I’ve found, and it was so fast! But it doesn’t look at all like an earthworm. I’ll try to attach a photo.” This is a curious case, because once we think we land on an identification, one of the facts that Kylee gives us seems to put us back in a corner and reevaluate. For example, given where this creature was found, as well as its body shape and coloration, we would instinctively identify this as a drain fly larva. Yet, when we take into account that it supposedly moves “so fast”, then this explanation seems less likely. But in any case, from the picture it looks like the critter does not have legs, like most species of worms, and many species of insect larvae, and if this is the case, then how can it move as fast as Kylee suggests?
“Are you able to identify these?” is all Carol asks in her submission regarding the beautiful, black worm-like critters pictured below. This is definitely one of the best photos we have received in a while. It captures in such detail the unique appearance of these creatures: their pattern of white polka dots and yellow markings, the long red stripe that runs the length of its back, and the horn sticking out from the rear end of its body. Typically, it is still difficult to identify some organisms without more context, even if the photo is good, but this photo is so clear that we managed to identify these guys with no context. These are leafy spurge hawk moth caterpillars!
“This is really bizarre”, writes Sergio about the horde of worms he found inside a light fixture in his eight-floor apartment in Portugal. “I was recovering a room that was not used for many years. The ceiling light was out, so I dismounted the fixture and a lot of dirt was inside (possible biomass, in retrospect). I washed it all out, replaced the light bulb, mounted the fixture and I had light in that room again. A few weeks later I turned on the light and within a few minutes a worm fell from the ceiling. I discarded the worm down the toilet and didn’t think much of it until I caught movement in the light, and I found what you see in the video below. I’m sorry that I didn’t have the balls to dismount it and give a closer look but I’m kinda freaked out, especially because once I unscrew it they’ll start falling through the middle. Any idea what might be going on here? I took this video two weeks after the finding and they’re still moving once I turn on the light. I was hoping they’d die before I took it apart but it’s taking quite a while. I don’t see any opening but one fell through somehow so there should be one. Any idea what that might be? Are those larvae of something bigger or are those the final forms themselves? Is food getting in there? Are they eating each other to survive this long? Did some bug get in there and lay a bunch of eggs or is it possible that the eggs were in there the whole time and when I replaced the bulb they hatched with the heat? Can eggs survive for many years? I’m so confused. Here’s a video: https://youtube.com/shorts/1fQh6eDm1Dg”
“I found that these very tiny larvae/worms had taken over a corner of my kitchen essentially within hours,” writes Michelle about the tiny black worm-like creatures pictured below. We will acknowledge right off the bat that the organisms are not that visible in the photo, as the photo is taken too far from the organisms. That said, the video that Michelle also included shows much better, and much clearer, the critters she is referring to. “I have no idea what they are and how concerned I should be”, she continues. “They seem to be spinning a spider web-like web. They were found next to the fridge, not near a drain or the pantry. However, there was a new loaf of bread and package of tortillas nearby. Please let me know if you have any inkling as to what these are. There were a good number of them on that fake plant, however I have had that fake plant for months and never seen an issue. Thank you in advance for your help!”
“My boyfriend hasn’t been feeling well the last couple of days,” starts this reader in her submission. She states that she “would like to try to ID the worm”, and while we will not be able to do this for her, we will nonetheless do our best to respond to her boyfriend’s situation with helpful information.
“I saw this worm in the den on the carpet at my parents house” says this reader about the black, segmented worm-like creature pictured below. Our reader, who is based in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, asks if we can tell him what it is.
Photographs of a worm was taken by this reader, who asks what it might be. The worm in question is black in color, with ridges that segment its body. It also appears to be have thin appendages that protrude from one end of its body.
Glossy, black worms were found by this reader in her bed sheets. Having recently moved to Florida, our reader wonders if this is something her dog or her landlord’s cats is bringing in to her home, and hopes that we can tell her what these creatures might be.
Troves of little worms were found on this woman’s bed, and from perusing our website, she guesses that they may be moth larvae. The worms in question were specifically found on a white cardigan on her bed that had been left out to dry on our reader’s washing line, and appear to be tiny in size and black in color, though it difficult to tell as the picture and video are taken from afar.
Multiple black worms were found crawling up the walls in the home of this concerned man. The worms appear to have segmented bodies, with six legs near their bulbous heads.
A woman reached out to us about a curious case of worms she cannot figure out. The worms, which she found in her home, appear to be minuscule in size, curled up in a ‘U’ shape, but come in two different colors. Our reader found both white and black/brown worms in her home.
We believe the small black organisms our reader found in her pond are either leeches or black fly larvae. Both are similar in appearance, though leeches are slightly bigger, and both are commonly found in ponds. Neither species are considered invasive and neither should damage her pond or cause any problems with the fish!
A reader reached out to us about little black worm-like organisms that have suddenly appeared in her apartment. We think these creatures might be New Guinea flatworms or brahminy blind snakes, although they could be something else.
One of our readers sent us a picture of a worm-like creature under the microscope. He said that it was about a quarter of the thickness of a hair and it was not possible to see it with the human eye. He wonders what it is, and we think that one possibility is that it could be a horsehair worm.
We received an interesting and faintly poetic question the other day about a black “worm” that has a red dot on each body segment. Here is her entire question: “Middle of May, Northern California, Black worm about two inches long, seems hairless has what appears to be thin covering of bristles, red dots on each segment, racing across my deck floor. Please identify.” Unfortunately, no picture was submitted along with the question, so this description is all we have to work with. Obviously, this limits our ability to offer a confident suggestion, but we’ll do what we can.
A reader wrote to us a few days ago about some small black worms she found at the bottom of her kids’ laundry basket. She also found a couple more worms when transferring their clothes from the washing machine to the drier, so the worms can evidently be traced back to the clothing of her children. The reader was wondering what these black worms in the laundry basket are, and we think they might be leeches (which are actually worms) or potentially slugs (which aren’t worms).
A while ago a reader wrote to us about some brown and black worms she is finding all over her apartment, including on her tile floor and the rug in her bedroom, as well as on the walls of her house. When they die, the worms “curl into a circle.” The reader refers to the worms in quotes, indicating that she is using the term loosely, and we think she is right in doing this, as it seems she is finding millipedes. However, the reader anticipated this suggestion, and said that she thinks the creatures she is finding are too skinny to be millipedes. So, below we explore our reader’s situation in more depth, trying to decipher if she found millipedes or something else.
A reader wrote to us recently about some small black worms that he is finding on the carpet under his desk. The black worms are only about an eighth of an inch long and they move quickly. In general, the reader isn’t especially concerned about the small black worms, as he doesn’t “mind them in particular if they were under the bed or something.” However, their presence under his desk is a problem because he is normally barefoot, and he is (understandably) “grossed out by the idea of them being there.” The reader is wondering what the small black worms under his desk are, and he is also wondering if they are dangerous and how he can get rid of them.
A reader from Texas recently wrote to us about some small black worms he is finding in his recreational vehicle (“RV”), and sent us a picture of one that is on his floor. On some days, he finds as many as six or seven of the black worms (which can also be “charcoal grey” worms) in his RV, but he has also gone up to a week without finding any worms. After struggling to discern where the worms are coming from, he finally concluded that they are entering the RV through the heat vents. The reader lives in his RV, and so was naturally wondering what he is finding, and he also wanted to know how to get rid of the black worms that have taken up residence in his RV.
We received a question through the All About Worms Facebook page a few days ago about “a tiny black skinny worm in my salt water pool,” to use the reader’s exact wording. The reader lives in Florida, and also reports that the worms are unsegmented and appear to have “diamond shaped scales,” but she concedes it is hard to tell if this is an accurate description of the worm’s exterior. The reader was having trouble figuring out what she found, so she asked us to identify the tiny, skinny, black worm that she found in her pool.