What Kind Of Worms Are These?
February 2, 2012
This was found in one of the shower stalls at a local fitness gym. Water tended to pool in one area that wasn’t draining properly and these “worms” had been found on two different occasions. Once the specimens were placed under a microscope it was quickly apparent that these were not worms at all but larvae. About 1/4” long (the photo to the left has been magnified), no eyes, no legs, a segmented body with dark bands, and a breathing tube poking out from its rear, all pointed to a definite identification: Drain Fly larvae. Fortunately, Drain Flies are harmless to humans though they can be an unsightly nuisance.
The adult Drain Fly does not bite (nor do the larvae). Delicate and fuzzy they tend to squish into a tiny puff of fluff when swatted. The oval wings and dark-colored body are covered in fuzz, giving it a moth-like appearance. Most of your typical aerosol pesticides will kill the adults but only the elimination of the breeding sites will give effective control. Removing stagnant water in the area and cleaning out and flushing with hot water any nearby drains should be your first steps. Other common areas to look for: saucers under potted plants, bird baths, roof gutters, around a/c drain lines, rain barrels, and overflowing septic tank fields. After eliminating any potential breeding sites (stagnant water), the adults will die a natural death in two weeks or less.