“I found this tiny clear worm with two white lengthwise stripes in my son’s bathroom sink,” says this reader in her submission about this creature photographed below. “Is this a drain fly larvae?”
For size comparison, our reader put the tip of her finger next to the worm in the photograph, telling us that this critter surely is very tiny. To us, this looks more like a flea larva than a drain fly larva. Drain fly larvae tend to be brown and striped or a solid black, with bristles extending from the sides of their body, while flea larvae look like this critter; almost completely clear, with long, dark entrails visible through their skin.
Now, unless our reader lives out on a farm with pigs, this is more likely to be a dog/cat flea than a human flea, so our reader needs not worry about her son’s, or her own, safety. Fleas are a common external parasite that anyone who has a pet knows about. They latch onto the skin of their hosts and suck the blood from the animal to feed themselves. Luckily, the larvae of the flea do not do this, so if they are found at this stage, it is far easier to get rid of them, as they tend to wander. Flea larvae instead feed on feather, dead bugs, dead skin and food debris. It could be that it ended up in our reader’s son’s sink because it found some skin or other organic material that it wanted to feed on.
What we do recommend is that our reader check her home for more flea larvae, especially if she has pets. If she does have pets, then the places she is most likely to find larvae are where the pet spends long periods of time. This could be a dog/cat bed, her own bed or her son’s, the carpets and rugs, or anywhere else it sleeps. If she does not have pets, all of these places (save the first) are still viable places to check, but she can likewise look in the kitchen, attic or basement (if these apply), or anywhere else that bugs might remain hidden. If she does find more, she can either contact us again for more information, or visit this past article on flea larvae.
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To conclude, the tiny clear worm our reader found in her son’s bathroom sink is a flea larva. Although the most common type of flea is harmful to dogs and cats, no species of flea has larvae that feed on blood, so this larva will not be doing any harm to any resident of our reader’s home. We hope that this article proves helpful to our reader and we wish her the best of luck with her flea hunt.