ACK! Little worms in my T's water dish...

FuzzyBritches

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 30, 2003
Messages
9
Hi, I'm a newbie around these parts, and I have a Chilean Rose tarantula named Ellie Mae (she is pictured in my avatar and is a real sweetie of a T). :D

This evening, when I was getting ready to do the daily T maintenance (picking out T poop and cricket parts, freshening water, etc.) I saw what appeared to be several small (around 1/2 inch long) whitish WORMS in Ellie Mae's water dish. I have never seen these worms before, and hubby and I have had Ellie Mae for around a month now (yup, I'm a tarantula newbie, too :) ).

Of course, they're gone now. I got rid of 'em and washed the heck out of Ellie Mae's water dish to boot. I looked around the rest of the substrate to see if there were any other unwelcome guests, but none were apparent to my eye.

What the heck could these worms be? Anyone have any idea how they got there? Does anyone think I should totally change the substrate in Ellie Mae's Pet Pal just to be safe?

Any thoughts welcome. Thanks.
 

Raveness

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Nov 2, 2002
Messages
449
do you see flys in the cage ever? I think they are baby phorid flies or something? Maggots... They like moist places... yuck! Look at her fangs because my curly had them in her fangs and I had to remove them.. Thank god! I got em' out.
 

FuzzyBritches

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 30, 2003
Messages
9
Thanks for your reply, Raveness! No, I've never seen any flies in Ellie Mae's Pet Pal - I think it would probably be hard for a fly to get in there through a ventilation hole, unless it's a very small fly. Are phorid flies very small?

And there weren't very many worms - only about five or six, I'd say. BLUGH! :8o
 

Code Monkey

Arachnoemperor
Old Timer
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Messages
3,786
Sounds like horsehair worms, a common parasite of crickets. They don't reinfect after they escape from their host (they lay their eggs in water and wait for something to drink them up) so throw them out and you should be fine.

Flies don't have aquatic larvae, so if they're still alive in the water you can rule that out.

Another possibility is some large species of nematode of which most species are free living and not a threat but, again, clean the water dish really well just to be sure.

But, from your description, I'd go with the horsehair worm theory.
 
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