Does Shreveport-Bossier Need to Worry About Hammerhead Worms?
You can't open up your Facebook feed without seeing a picture of Hammerhead flatworms. I had never heard of these worms up until now. So what is all the fuss about? Why are we freaking out about a worm that is popular in Iowa?
Several news outlets are warning Texans about the danger of the "Invasive Species" of worms. With the rain we have had in the south people are seeing hammerhead flatworms come up. These guys can get up to a foot long, oof no thank you.
The main reason why so many folks are concerned about flatworms is that they eat earthworms that we desperately need in our ecosystem. Everyone knows if you want healthy soil you need to keep those earthworms around.
If hammerhead flatworms are in Texas can they be in Louisiana?
What if I told you that we have been dealing with hammerhead flatworms in Louisiana for a while now? According to LSU Ag Center we have hammerhead flatworms all over Louisiana. Why? Because they thrive in hot and humid weather. "So it does well in greenhouses; in tropical and subtropical areas it can spread from greenhouses.” It looks like the invasive species is here to stay.
Besides earthworms and slugs can the hammerhead flatworms hurt me?
The basic answer is no, however, the worms do excrete neurotoxins and those neurotoxins can possibly irritate your skin if you have very sensitive skin. If your dog or cat eats one or licks one they could possibly feel sick. Keep in mind the worms can transmit some parasites, it's best to avoid handling them and if you do run across one make sure you use gloves.
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