We just heard from a reader who bought and installed several bags of dark pine bark “nuggets” from a Home Depot in Minnesota. He was working with these nuggets in some light rain when he noticed a few whitish thread-like worms moving their heads around and eventually landing on other pieces of bark, or plant leaves. When disturbed, he said these creatures coiled into a mass of knots, but then quickly untangled themselves. He said these worms are 2-3 inches long, and don’t meet the typical size requirements for Pinworms or Threadworms, which are parasitic to humans.
He included a link to a YouTube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5fHD6v5uSo) that shows what he thinks might be the specimen in question. He is hoping we can provide any additional information; specifically whether or not these creatures are parasitic to humans or dogs.
ATTENTION: GET PARASITE HELP NOW! At All About Worms we get a lot of questions about skin parasites, blood parasites, and intestinal parasites in humans. Because we can't diagnose you, we have put together this list of doctors and labs who understand and specialize in dealing with parasites in humans! That resource is HERE
We believe our reader is dealing with horsehair worms. These worms can grow up to 40 inches, which makes us believe our reader is dealing with younger horsehair worms. These worms are parasitic, but only to insects and arthropods, so if they are in fact horsehair worms, our reader doesn’t need to worry about his family or dog. These worms live in a host, and then deposit themselves when they sense they are near water. This could be why our reader discovered these in the rain.
To conclude, without a photo, we can’t be 100% positive that our reader has found horsehair worm, but we are very confident that this is the case. We don’t believe that these worms are related to the bark nuggets he bought for his garden, they probably already were living in insects in the soil.
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