Photo by Melody

Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense)

Order: Tricladida
Family: Bipaliidae
Genus: Bipalium
Species: kewense


11 positives
82 neutrals
34 negatives


This bug has been reportedly found in the following regions:

Alabaster, Alabama
Arley, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama
Dothan, Alabama
Helena, Alabama (2 reports)
Madison, Alabama
Mc Calla, Alabama
Montgomery, Alabama
Ohatchee, Alabama
Titus, Alabama
Vincent, Alabama
Camden, Arkansas
Heber Springs, Arkansas
Little Rock, Arkansas
Maumelle, Arkansas
Mena, Arkansas
Siloam Springs, Arkansas
Anaheim, California
Canyon Country, California
Castro Valley, California
Ceres, California
Chico, California
Chino Hills, California
Cloverdale, California
Cupertino, California
Danville, California
Davis, California
East Porterville, California
Elk Grove, California
Farmersville, California
Folsom, California
Fresno, California
Galt, California
Gilroy, California
Grand Terrace, California
Hayward, California
Highlands-baywood Park, California
Lake Forest, California
Livermore, California
Lodi, California (2 reports)
Long Beach, California
Modesto, California
Mountain View, California
Novato, California
Redding, California
Rocklin, California
Roseville, California
Sacramento, California (4 reports)
San Carlos, California
San Clemente, California
San Diego, California (3 reports)
San Francisco, California
Stockton, California
Vacaville, California
Whittier, California
Belleview, Florida
Boca Raton, Florida (2 reports)
Bradenton, Florida
Brandon, Florida
Davenport, Florida
Deland, Florida
Deltona, Florida
Dunedin, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Hollywood, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Mary Esther, Florida
Mount Dora, Florida
Oldsmar, Florida
Orlando, Florida
Palm Coast, Florida
Pompano Beach, Florida
Port Saint Lucie, Florida
Saint Augustine, Florida
Sarasota, Florida (2 reports)
Tavares, Florida
West Palm Beach, Florida
Athens, Georgia
Atlanta, Georgia
Augusta, Georgia
Carrollton, Georgia
Columbus, Georgia
Cornelia, Georgia
Cumming, Georgia
Dacula, Georgia
Dallas, Georgia
Douglasville, Georgia (2 reports)
Fayetteville, Georgia
Gainesville, Georgia
Jackson, Georgia
Kingsland, Georgia
Marietta, Georgia
Midway, Georgia
Monroe, Georgia
Newnan, Georgia (2 reports)
Peachtree City, Georgia
Rome, Georgia
Sharpsburg, Georgia
Stockbridge, Georgia (2 reports)
Tucker, Georgia
Winder, Georgia
Honolulu, Hawaii
Kailua, Hawaii
Kurtistown, Hawaii
Wahiawa, Hawaii
Anderson, Indiana
Denham Springs, Louisiana
Gonzales, Louisiana
Harvey, Louisiana
La Place, Louisiana
Lacombe, Louisiana
Saint Martinville, Louisiana
Arnold, Maryland
Framingham, Massachusetts
Halifax, Massachusetts
Brandon, Mississippi (2 reports)
Fulton, Mississippi
Long Beach, Mississippi
Meridian, Mississippi
Moss Point, Mississippi
Columbia, New Jersey
Lincoln Park, New Jersey
Petersburg, New York
Cary, North Carolina (2 reports)
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Charlotte, North Carolina (2 reports)
China Grove, North Carolina
Clayton, North Carolina
Columbus, North Carolina
Concord, North Carolina
Havelock, North Carolina
High Point, North Carolina
Holly Springs, North Carolina
Kure Beach, North Carolina
Lewisville, North Carolina
Morrisville, North Carolina
Murphy, North Carolina
New Bern, North Carolina
Newport, North Carolina
Pittsboro, North Carolina
Raleigh, North Carolina (4 reports)
Richlands, North Carolina
Rocky Mount, North Carolina
Sherrills Ford, North Carolina
Waxhaw, North Carolina
Heath, Ohio
Lincoln City, Oregon
Altoona, Pennsylvania
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
Boswell, Pennsylvania
Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
Fajardo, Puerto Rico
Rincon, Puerto Rico
Cayce, South Carolina
Duncan, South Carolina
Easley, South Carolina
Fort Mill, South Carolina
Lexington, South Carolina
Mauldin, South Carolina
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
North Charleston, South Carolina
Rock Hill, South Carolina
Summerville, South Carolina
Walhalla, South Carolina
Westminster, South Carolina
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Hixson, Tennessee
Knoxville, Tennessee
Sparta, Tennessee
Arlington, Texas
Austin, Texas (3 reports)
Dallas, Texas (3 reports)
Desoto, Texas
Edinburg, Texas
Euless, Texas
Hebbronville, Texas
Houston, Texas (2 reports)
Karnack, Texas
La Marque, Texas
Longview, Texas
Marshall, Texas
Nederland, Texas
New Boston, Texas
Paris, Texas (2 reports)
Port Arthur, Texas
Porter, Texas
Sachse, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Spring, Texas
Portsmouth, Virginia
Roanoke, Virginia
South Hill, Virginia
Yorktown, Virginia
Lyle, Washington
Maple Valley, Washington

By ami75
Thumbnail #1 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by ami75

By yotedog

Thumbnail #2 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by yotedog

By Xanxer

Thumbnail #3 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by Xanxer

By thm92673

Thumbnail #4 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by thm92673

By LouisianaMark

Thumbnail #5 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by LouisianaMark

By LouisianaMark

Thumbnail #6 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by LouisianaMark

By dcm1988

Thumbnail #7 of Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense) by dcm1988

There are a total of 90 photos.
Click here to view them all!

Member Notes:

Neutral DonnaA2Z On Sep 7, 2006, DonnaA2Z from Jacksonville, FL
(Zone 9a) wrote:

This "worm" is usually only seen during very high humidity situations, such as a lot of rain. They are usually found in cool, dark, moist areas. They eat earth worms, slugs, snails, insect larvae, and are even cannibalistic. They usually move and feed at night. They can survive desiccation only if water loss does not exceed 45 percent of their body weight. They have been found commonly in American greenhouses since 1901. Their mouth, which also serves as an anus, is present near mid-body on the ventral surface.

Colors of Florida species range from greenish-grey to brown with dark narrow stripes on the dorsal side. Sometimes they are yellow or blue in other areas of the country.

Neutral Magpye On Oct 2, 2006, Magpye from NW Qtr, AR
(Zone 6a) wrote:

Also known as the Kew Greenhouse Flatworm.

This land planarian is slender and brown, with five dark longitudinal stripes; it can be large, up to 10 inches in length. The species is 'hammer-headed'. The head is shovel-shaped (wider than body) and there are numerous minute eyes along its border.

The species was discovered in 1878 in the greenhouses of Kew Gardens near London, hence its scientific name.

It has a wide distribution in warm climates. It needs a moist habitat and is usually encountered near outdoor water faucets, where the soil often remains wet. It original home is unknown but is possibly the Indo-Malayan region.

Flatworms are hermaphroditic. The eggs are encapsulated and affixed to objects in damp places. These are benign creatures -they do not damage plants or cause any medical problems.

Neutral spmellen On Apr 29, 2007, spmellen from Long Beach, MS
(Zone 9a) wrote:

Found this worm in Long Beach, Mississippi. Had never seen before. Was about 4 inches long.

Neutral KyWoods On May 21, 2007, KyWoods from Melbourne, KY
(Zone 6a) wrote:

I found a planarian in our pond last year--don't know if it's the same kind, but looks a lot like it. Should I add my zip code to the list?

Neutral jostoich On Jul 6, 2007, jostoich from Sacramento, CA
(Zone 9a) wrote:

I saw these type of worms for the first time when I moved to Sacramento in 2000. I'd never seen one before and wondered what they were. I haven't seen any the past 2 years, perhaps because of the dryer conditions.

Neutral TxSuzy On Jul 8, 2007, TxSuzy from The Colony, TX wrote:

I have just noticed these flathead worms near a faucet in my yard. I believe they may have been brought in with soil and rocks added to my lawn last year.

Neutral Greenraven On Jul 8, 2007, Greenraven wrote:

My mother found one of these planarians on Crestview Dr., in Gulfport, Mississippi.

It was grey, 10 inches long, no stripes. The year was 1971.

Neutral ami75 On Jul 8, 2007, ami75 from Elk Grove, CA wrote:

We found this worm for the first time in our garden today in Elk Grove, Ca. We also saw it reproduce, as it's tale broke off and the 1 inch offspring moved around immediately. I have posted a photo.

Neutral wormsci On Jul 9, 2007, wormsci from Cortland, NY wrote:

There are four different species of these Bipalium flatworms currently found in the US. Three eat only earthworms; one eats snails and slugs. Bipalium kewense is found across the southern states and may get over 10 inches. It has five dark stripes along the back including a thin middle stripe. Bipalium adventitium is found across the northern states, reaching about 4 inches. It has one narrow dark stripe on the back. Bipalium vagum is the mollusk eater now found in the southeastern US. It has a three thick dark stripes, a dark neck collar, and two dark head spots.
A researcher (Pete Ducey) at the State University of NY (Biology Dept) is studying the spread and effects of these invasive flatworms. He welcomes questions and reports of sightings.

Neutral yotedog On Jul 14, 2007, yotedog from Raleigh, NC wrote:

Found in an unfinished basement (damp, but dry concrete floor) in Raleigh, NC in July. The nearest entry point would have been a sump pump, and the worm was quite dry when found. Has a protuberance from the ventral surface--not sure what that is (see pic), but possibly the mouth?

Negative alyrics On Jul 15, 2007, alyrics from Beachwood, OH wrote:

Found them in several damp places across my gardens, and under pots. Found a cache of them near my compost bins where there are lots of earthworms. I think they came in from greenhouse plants. I've read that they eat earthworms, hence my negative rating. Plus they are just ugly for whatever that's worth.

Neutral Xanxer On Aug 2, 2007, Xanxer wrote:

The picture I posted shows a worm with a dark purple body at the end, then getting lighter and turning into a creamish color up to the head.
This photo was taken in Tokyo, Japan!

Neutral easterlilly On Sep 28, 2007, easterlilly from Heath, OH wrote:

I seen this worm in my flower bed after a rainy day
it was a yellowish brown color with a brown stripe down the back its the first time ive ever seen on and ive lived in Ohio
all my life

Neutral JCTX On Oct 6, 2007, JCTX from Nederland, TX wrote:

Found this worm for the first time earlier in the week on our driveway. There were 3 of them and they were amost 2ft in length each. Thought at first it was snakes. When my son cut them up they reproduced and keep going. Just found another one near the front door today. Want to know more about these bugs and are they any threat of any kind?

Neutral pumoxy On Oct 7, 2007, pumoxy from Dallas, TX wrote:

I've never seen this worm before in Dallas, TX. I found it on my front door step by a bed of flowers. I'm glad to know that it will not eat my flowers. Please add Dallas, TX to your regional list.

Negative maccionoadha On Oct 30, 2007, maccionoadha from Halifax, MA
(Zone 6a) wrote:

These flatworms have devastated the earthworm populations in parts of the UK. Many farmers fields have been destroyed, because there are no earthworms left to aerate the soil. If you find them DO NOT CUT THEM UP! They will only regenerate and the smaller bits will turn into new ones. I'm trying to locate a way to eradicate them without harming the earthworms. No luck, so far.
UPDATE: Orange oil will kill them. You can buy online Orange Oil Concentrate manufactured by Medina Orange Oil. I know carries it. You can find more places to buy, by Google-ling 'orange oil concentrate'.

Neutral WJMPSL On Nov 6, 2007, WJMPSL from Port Saint Lucie, FL wrote:

Saw one today while bringing out the trash. It was under some cardboard. Went in to get a camera but it was gone when I got back. I just started a worm box so I don't want these around.

Neutral MMinto On Dec 9, 2007, MMinto from Chino Hills, CA wrote:

91709 Chino Hills, I went searching for a specimen soon after a period of strong rain. I found several and have been keeping them in captivity attempting to oberve their behavior. This region should be added to their widespread habitat: Chino Hills CA, 91709

Neutral Revelations On Jan 8, 2008, Revelations from Porter, TX wrote:

This was our first time to see the Hammerhead Worm. It was on our patio in Porter, Texas and at least 10" long. It is brown. Thanks for your website to help us identify this worm. We have put it in a fruit jar so now I know to add some water also. Don't know what we will do with it but we surely will not let it divide!

Neutral ncgirliegirl On May 21, 2008, ncgirliegirl from New Bern, NC wrote:

I found this worm wrapped around my cats tail this morning. I thought it was a small snake and proceeded to scream at my husband to come out of the house and look at it. When I noticed its head was flat like a hammerhead I then knew it wasnt a snake. It was about 10 inches in length. I have lived in Eastern NC for 30 years now and have never seen anything remotely close. Kind of a strange creature.

Neutral trinketsmom On Jun 15, 2008, trinketsmom from Newport, NC wrote:

Found one just yesterday under an outside faucet. Have never seen anything like it.

Neutral degauss On Jul 6, 2008, degauss from Sherrills Ford, NC wrote:

My son-in-law found this and thought it was weird enough to bring over & show to me & my husband. I just searched on 'hammerhead worm" to see if there was really such a thing, or if it was some knd of mutant. Very strange bug!

Negative roybears On Jul 9, 2008, roybears from Castro Valley, CA wrote:

Predatory flatworm that feeds on earthworms. I just discovered one-- came out after we watered our lawn-- Castro Valley, CA

Negative ddj0195 On Jul 13, 2008, ddj0195 from Coral Springs, FL
(Zone 10b) wrote:

We are in Coral Springs, FL 33071, about two miles from the Everglades boundary canal. Just found two of Bipalium vagum on the rim of my waterfalls and in the water of one of the cascade basins. The falls feed water to my fish pond which contains fancy goldfish and Apple Snails. Finding out that this obscene creatute is an invasive species is bad enough, without finding out that of the four types, this one prefers my Apple Snails. One of my prize fish has also taken an unidentified illness. What would happen if my fish cjhow down on these things? After all, the Bipalium vagum is equally at home under water as it is on the rocks and soil around the pond.

Neutral domgar On Jul 29, 2008, domgar from Brandon, FL wrote:

In the past 15 years I have only seen two or three around my house.

Neutral lobla On Jul 30, 2008, lobla from Hollywood, FL wrote:

It's7:30 PM and my husband says come and look at this worm it has a hammerhead, it was on our sliding glass door
and as we were watching this one we saw another one down
below. We had so much rain today we are even on a flood watch so it makes sense about the humid environment.
My first thought was that this was some kind of mutation so i googled it and found there's really such a species.

Neutral cherva On Jul 30, 2008, cherva from Corinth, TX wrote:

We live in Denton and have all sorts of crazy critters, we found one of these worm in a very shaded bed. My six year old thought we found a baby cobra.

Neutral Astraya On Aug 7, 2008, Astraya from Ithaca, NY wrote:

I have a question when I lived in Mississippi - Moss Point on the Gulf Coast... I went to my car one day and one of the worm snake things I see here .... basically attacked my leg
It snapped around my leg it was about 12 inches long and as soon as it attacked I swiped at it and screamed... it fell apart immediately... but left a mark on my leg.... it was slimy and had black strips down its back and has a twoheaded or one head curved similar to the pictures here... I was on my porch which is a cool area from the sun and back driveway... I didn't know what it was and no one believed me that I had been bite by it...but because I had a mark the doctor put me on antibotics... my question is can this thing be dangerous to a reproduce in us or something... that would be a horrific thought... some creatures like it like a fluke and hookworm can do that... if so what should I tell my doc I haven't seen any worms come from me anywhere but... my central nervous system has been going wacko and no one can find out why...and I get massive headaches...and it just gets worse over time... any information would be great so I can relate it to a doc up here in the north where I live now... it has been a few years back that this occurred... I just hope I am ok and whatever is wrong with my CNS is something explainable eventually.

Neutral kenju99 On Aug 29, 2008, kenju99 from Raleigh, NC wrote:

I found one of these on the tile beside my pool on August 27, 2008, after a heavy rain.

Positive village1diot On Sep 1, 2008, village1diot from Vacaville, CA
(Zone 9b) wrote:

I guess I'll be the first to post a positive for this "Slug Killing Carnivore". Anything that gets the slugs before the slugs get my seedlings is a definite positive.

Neutral rwhart On Sep 8, 2008, rwhart from Chapel Hill, NC wrote:

Saw a hammerhead worm this Monday morning in Raleigh, NC around 8:00 on a concrete sidewalk. Hanna (Tropical Storm) had come through Friday/Saturday and dumped 5 inches of rain on us.

Neutral STARCROC2000 On Sep 10, 2008, STARCROC2000 from Saint Augustine, FL wrote:


Negative Jiny On Sep 13, 2008, Jiny from Tokyo
(Zone 10a) wrote:

Found one in my garden here in Ibaraki Japan and worried about the earthworms in my soil that are so beneficial.

Neutral Lonlon On Sep 15, 2008, Lonlon from Kaitaia
New Zealand wrote:

I live in New Zealand and found one of these bizare creatures under the incinerator.

Neutral caddogurl95 On Sep 15, 2008, caddogurl95 from Karnack, TX wrote:

Found three of these worms in my garden at Karnack Tx. One of them was eating a slug. They were all light brown and had a dark green stripe running down their back and they left slime trails.

Negative organic1 On Sep 19, 2008, organic1 from DFW Metroplex, TX
(Zone 8a) wrote:

Land planarians eat earthworms. They should be destroyed. Do not cut them up as they will regenerate heads and multiply. Best to squish them or spray them with a mixture of orange oil (d'limonene) and water. 2 oz. of the orange oil to one gallon of water should be sufficient.

Neutral erikfx4 On Sep 26, 2008, erikfx4 from Portsmouth, VA wrote:

I found this in my bathroom and thought it was a parasitic worm like the flat worm. It was about 4 inches long. It just rained quite a bit which fits with it's documented behavior. I'm glad it's not a parasite!

Negative CuriousCritter On Sep 27, 2008, CuriousCritter from Waxhaw, NC wrote:

It just rained a lot and my children found these strange worms all over the place outside. I was pleased to read so many reports and view pictures on this website. I had never seen anything like it! I would not like all of our beneficial earthworms eaten so we are eliminating them with oarnge oil which works immediately. I hate killing things but these sound like they are bad news!

Neutral jake1983 On Sep 27, 2008, jake1983 from Farmersville, CA wrote:

I found this worm on my patio after I watered my yard, it was about 10" long with two dark brown lines down its back and it was a light brown color. I have never seen one here before and I have lived here 25 years.

Neutral mollimae On Oct 1, 2008, mollimae from Lodi, CA wrote:

my husband just build 3 large 12x5 planter boxes to use for veggie gardening ... tonight we let the water run for about 10 minutes in one in preparation for planting seeds .... when out from under this box came "THREE" of these ugly flathead worms ..... about 4" each..... i've never seen anything like them before .... immediately we smashed them .... i like the idea that they eat slugs and snails .... but what about the earth worms .... and i really don't want to have any 12-24 inches long ... should we continue to "SMASH" them .... we bought soil and compost for these boxes and assume that's how they arrived .... any suggestions ???

Negative skyebc1 On Oct 4, 2008, skyebc1 from Clayton, NC wrote:

we are organic gardners dependent on earthworms. When we found this critter on our pathway we allowed him to go to critter heaven. Simply letting the worm dry out on a sheet of paper is effective.

Neutral jdf04 On Oct 5, 2008, jdf04 from Yorktown, VA wrote:

I found a shovel head worm in my flower bed this morning while doing some gardening. I had never seen one and wondered if it was a small snake of some sort when I first saw it. Then as I looked closer I came to the conclusion it was some sort of worm. Then I wondered if it might be something that might damage the garden, so I moved it out of the yard into the woods.

Neutral ddgunn On Oct 5, 2008, ddgunn from Mena, AR wrote:

Gross. We found ours crawling across our front door last night. I have never seen one before. Needless to say, I had to find out what it was and here I am.

Neutral thymes2bme On Oct 14, 2008, thymes2bme from Meridian, MS wrote:

Thank goodness I found this web site. I have found eight of these worms on my patio since the spring. I took one to the local co-op here in Meridian, Ms. They seemed to think it was some type of tapeworm. I have researched for all kinds of worms and finally found this website and some pictures, which helps me tremendously. Thank You.

Neutral kids5 On Oct 14, 2008, kids5 from Parkesburg, PA wrote:

I found one of these worms in my house this morning. My dog was outside and must have brought it in on him, and he rubbed up against my comforter on my bed and there is where I found it. But the weirdest thing about it I automatically thought that my dogs had worms and I called the vet and took it to them to have them check it out for me. And in the long run it was a relief that there wasn't anything wrong with my dogs. But the thing that gets me is that I don't live around any water, or don't have a pond in my yard for these worms to be around. And it hasn't rained here for a few weeks. So why am I finding them around here now. I've lived here for 8 years and this is the 1st on I have ever seen!!!!
Are they harmful to animals or humans. I have kids and don't want anything to happen to them while they are playing in the back yard. Or anything to happen to the dogs as well.
Or anyone else that may come over to visit.
Any suggestions?????? I live in Pennsylvania and this was a very uncommon worm that I have ever seen. What may have caused it to come out now? Could there be more then just one in my yard that I have to be concerned about?
Anyone with info please let me know. I am very concerned about this type of worm.

Negative woodelf60 On Oct 17, 2008, woodelf60 from Heber Springs, AR wrote:

Found one of these in the backyard,under a tarp. Had no idea what it was at first. Wild looking,but from what I'm finding,it's non-native,invasive,and eats earthworms,so don't think I like this fella too much.

Positive Tecumseh57 On Nov 28, 2008, Tecumseh57 from Escondido, CA wrote:

The site hellped me identify something I had never seen before. I grew up in Ohio, have lived in Virginia, Hawaii, VIetnam, Germany, Korea, and California. I have lived in the Escondido area about 10 years and found this 6 to 8 inch long critter on my concrete driveway a day after 1.4 inches. I googled a guessed at name, "hammer head worm" and was immediately rewarded with your site a picture and a name. Thanks.

Neutral cvlaw On Jan 3, 2009, cvlaw from Honolulu, HI wrote:

saw this thing on the walkway outside my door this morning, about 5 inches long, very skinny, brown and slimy looking. I got down on my hands and knees to get a good look at it, at first i thought it was a small centipede or snake... it reminded me of a hammerhead shark so I googled hammerhead worm and found this site. the landlord does a bit of gardening and may have brought it in with some plants or soil or maybe it's common here in Hawaii, sounds like this is a good climate for it. It's been raining a lot and the grass is wet. I hope i don't see any more of them, it doesn't sound like it's good for the yard.

Negative Cathyntx On May 10, 2009, Cathyntx from Paris, TX wrote:

It has been raining here profusely in the last week or so, and my husband came in the house this afternoon to report there was a small snake on the patio. Thanks to a recent Dirt Doctor (Howard Garrett) newsletter, I was able to identify this hammerhead worm. The newsletter warned that if the worm was cut in half, it would reconstruct itself unless put in full strength orange oil. I had some and did put both cut halves in the orange oil. However, in the next couple of hours, another larger worm of this type showed up on the patio. Since I'm not really crazy about hands on treatments with creatures, I decided to try a salt layer. Started with the head and as soon as the salt hit it, the worm gave a jerk, and I continued down the body, covering the body of the worm with the salt. Worked like a charm. I prefer the salt method myself; faster, cheaper, less messy, less personally involved.

Negative TheGreenPlumber On May 17, 2009, TheGreenPlumber from Long Beach, CA wrote:

Long Beach, California. Very interesting creature. My son and I found a larger one (two inches) and four or five smaller ones, balled together under a plant pot with slugs and sal bugs. We have seen them over the last few seasons. It is interesting how it lifts its "head" and sweeps around, similar to a snake. We teased the Wife, telling her it was a tapeworm, looking to her for lunch....

After researching online, we have decided to "off them", as we have an organic garden and have done our best to keep earthworms working hard. If there is a reason for NOT doing so, please let us know.


Neutral tucker6262 On May 24, 2009, tucker6262 from Helena, AL wrote:

Thank you for this site!!! It has been raining here a pretty good bit the past couple of weeks and my sons were both outside with their daddy and found this worm that looked like a tape worm or a baby snake. We weren't sure what it was and my 5 year old said it looked like a hammerhead so that's what we googled and your site came up and gave up a picture. We found it on our driveway and a couple of inches behind it was a half eaten slug GROSS! Now with everyone here's info I will look for the rest of them

Neutral bama76 On May 25, 2009, bama76 from Dothan, AL
(Zone 8b) wrote:

I am so glad this site exists. Tonight, my husband spotted this worm on our back door. We got the flashlight out and tried to figure out exactly what we were looking at - snake, slug, worm? We googled "worm hammerhead" and were relieved to see this page and all the comments. This area has experienced lots of rain the past several days (and experienced flooding conditions 2 months ago). We live near a drainage ditch and wooded areas, so maybe that's where it came from. Very interesting indeed!

Neutral JRHunt On May 29, 2009, JRHunt from Easley, SC wrote:

A co-worker pointed one of these out to me on a jobsite in Clinton South Carolina two days ago. Neither of us had ever seen anything like it and our first thoughts were that it was some kind of parisite that had escaped from its host. I am relieved to have found this site and find the information here.

Neutral darlafarmer On May 29, 2009, darlafarmer from Natchez, MS wrote:

We found this worm making his way acrossmy sidewalk in Natchez, Mississippi this morning. Made a couple pictures and googled him up! Very strange looking, and about 8-10 inches long with very narrow stripes down the body. Have seen many unusual critters inthe 15 years on thios property but the hammerhead is the first of this kind!

Neutral monica_mxc On Jul 8, 2009, monica_mxc from Stockbridge, GA wrote:

I have never in my life seen this thing. I didn't know if it was a snake or worm or what. My son found it and called it a shovel worm. He found it under a rock by our tomato garden. Now that I know what it is, I'm not worried about it. It was very interesting to watch. It moves it's head kind of like a caterpillar trying to figure out which way to go.

Negative GGK86 On Jul 9, 2009, GGK86 from Cumming, GA wrote:

First time I have ever seen one of these - spent all my life in N. GA. If it would just eat the darn slugs that are eating my hostas I would love him but... gotta die because they can destroy earthworm population.

Neutral tsilke On Jul 21, 2009, tsilke from Santa Clarita, CA wrote:

add santa clarita CA to the list!!!! 99% positive i first got the worm from a wisteria i planted as it showed up 24 hours later and it was very dry that summer. chopped him in two cuz he looked liked a parasite and put him in a plastic bag to show the hubby. by the tiime he got home 2 days later, there were two in the bag!!! crazy crazy ugly thing!

Negative ashvlgrl On Aug 3, 2009, ashvlgrl from North Charleston, SC
(Zone 8a) wrote:

I'm going to assume that I have the type that eat slugs since I found them amidst quite a few slugs on my front porch. I almost regretted killing them (tissue & toilet, no chopping) until I found they eat earthworms. I have enough issues trying to grow things in this heat and humidity without adding something that kills my good bugs!

Neutral ysarfati44 On Aug 11, 2009, ysarfati44 from Anaheim, CA wrote:

Eeeeww! What a creature! I found this monstrous-looking worm in my living room. It was more than a foot long. I'm guessing it came in from under the front door. My apartment door is near the main sprinkler system. Like many other folks here, I thought it was a snake at first. Thank goodness for this site! I Googled "hammerhead worm or snake" and here we are.
Right after posting the above post I found another one coming in from under the door. Yuck! I have the heeby-jeebies now. I wonder if sprinkling salt or orange oil on my threshold will keep them out. Any ideas or comments would be welcomed. Thanks!

Neutral colaik On Aug 12, 2009, colaik from Longview, TX wrote:

I live in Texas and was planting a clipping from a black magic elephant ear when I saw some at the location of where I was moving the clipping. I have lots of cannas and I keep seeing the leaves sticking and not unfurling. When I open the leaves myself I see lots of eggs. I suppose these are the eggs of the "hammerhead worm." Cannas love lots of water so I fugure thats where mine came from.

Positive lancesfinds On Aug 23, 2009, lancesfinds from Altoona, PA wrote:

My son found this on a tarp we moved which had some wet leaf litter under it. We were kind of freaked out not knowing what it was. The positive note was in finding this web site and the pictures which enabled us to correctly identify this unusual 'bug'. Although this creature may attack the earthworm population, we rather hope it will be attacking the large snail and slug population which devastated a large portion of our garden this year.

Neutral KreexRamoo On Sep 1, 2009, KreexRamoo from Lincoln Park, NJ wrote:

I spoke to the University of Flordia whome did a large research on this Flat Worm and did not seem to care about the fact that this worm is found fairly commonly over the last few years in my area of NJ. Sadly this year I havent gone out at 2am to find any due to work. They tell me they cant live here but they do. Impressive critters. I added a picture to the database if anyone wants to see it.

Also I am a collector and study entimology as a hobby.. If anyone could get some and send to me, I'd be more then happy to pay for them.I'd like to have em for observation and tests.

E-mail me @ if your intrested.

Neutral maggiesmom03 On Sep 6, 2009, maggiesmom03 from Helena, AL wrote:

We started finding these worms about 7 years ago when we moved to this property which used to be a pecan grove. In the last three days, I have killed 13 of them by pouring salt on them. We have wonderful soil because of the earth worms and they are definitely eating them. I would say we have seen/killed over 50 of them in the last 7 years but they are starting to increase in population suddenly. I think it is due to the moist summer we have had but I am seeing many over 12 inches long now! They are just creepy and disgusting.

Neutral CommanderKoenig On Sep 14, 2009, CommanderKoenig from Sparta, TN wrote:

I live in Tennessee and I just found two of these hammerhead worms. They were living under an old foam seat cushion that I was saving for a template. One of the hammers was around 8 inches and the other around 3 inches. This has to be the most sticky creature I have ever found, it stuck to everything I touched it with like glue. I have never seen this creature before, and I am a very outdoor oriented person. There are loads of slugs where I live and maybe those are what is getting feasted on ( I hope so ), however there is also a large population of earthworms and night crawlers here too. I love my earthworms and night crawlers , but I hate the slugs found here they eat my plants and my cat food. Not sure what to do here I guess I could poison the slugs , kill the hammerheads, and save my good worms. Anyone have a better idea?

Negative jehman On Sep 17, 2009, jehman from San Diego, CA wrote:

Found one of these guys crossing the sidewalk one morning near a friends apartment complex in Del Mar, CA. I assume it can survive because of the excessive watering the apartment complex does every day. Invasive and predatory to earthworms.

Neutral slrjr On Sep 21, 2009, slrjr from Los Angeles, CA wrote:

8 inch hammerhead worm (brown with darker stripe) found on the patio in the early morning. Dragged it inside to show my husband..and then found it a new home in the garden.

Neutral Unicornlady65 On Sep 22, 2009, Unicornlady65 from Cornelia, GA wrote:

I decided since we have had so much rain here in NE GA for the past week, that I would go out and do some weed killing since the GA red clay was soft. I looked up and saw this "snake-like" creature on the side of my house. I knocked it down and chopped it up with my shovel. Today while finishing up on the weed killing I found a lot more of them. I am glad to know they don't hurt humans, but they got to go! Thanks for the info about the salt, I keep a lot of salt around for those pesky slugs that crawl out of my bulb beds. I will try that to get rid of these nasty looking critters.Where can I get the orange oil? Hopefully, It will soak into the earth and help get rid of them.

Neutral petersonnb On Sep 24, 2009, petersonnb from Jacksonville, NC wrote:

Found one of these on my kitchen floor this morning - scared me at first. Guess it wanted to come indoors, out of the wet weather we've had lately. I'd never even heard of it, until I looked it up on this website. Thanks for the great identification and info.
Jacksonville, NC

Negative BenjaminRB On Sep 28, 2009, BenjaminRB from Peachtree City, GA wrote:

My son found these creatures crawling across our concrete walkway after a rain. We read about them here. Next, we performed an experiment. We found a small earthworm and placed it next to the plenaria worm. The small plenaria engulfed the earthworm quickly after wrapping its body around the earthworm. This is not a good sign for our earthworms. Subsequent to this discovery, we have sighted a few others crawling around our walkway.

Negative laineeden On Oct 3, 2009, laineeden from Conway, AR wrote:

Conway, Arkansas
I have lived and gardened in the central part of Arkansas for 20 years, and this year is my first year to encounter this nasty pest. We have extremely poor soil quality, and the earthworms are suffering from this pest. Plus, we are the proud parents of four Pomeranians. These nasty predators get stuck in the coats of our dogs, requiring us to cut them out. Nasty vermin all the way around.

Negative cediv On Oct 7, 2009, cediv from Holly Springs, NC wrote:

I would love to find out how to kill these without killing earthworms.

Positive dolphinboy2000 On Oct 9, 2009, dolphinboy2000 from Murphy, NC wrote:

After my 9 year old son proudly walked into the house with his "new species" of worm today, I was thrilled to google and find such helpful, detailed info about this species on this site. He found it under a rock in the backyard after a lot of rain. Now that we've determined this isn't an undiscovered species, much to my son's dismay, the little critter has left my house and returned to the backyard :)

Neutral outlaw18 On Oct 22, 2009, outlaw18 from Montgomery, TX wrote:

Add Montgomery, TX to your list! Confirmed Hammerhead worm! Laugh all you want... but, I have placed this lovely worm in a pickle jar for my daughter to take to school tomorrow! Hope it lives :-(! This is the second one we have seen here. Iit is at least 18+ inches long and is just plain nasty! It stuck to everything I used to pick it up with.... At first glance I also thought it was a snake... It was in my garage.. Thank goodness I had on house shoes!

Neutral Dirtybird2337 On Nov 5, 2009, Dirtybird2337 from Sharpsburg, GA wrote:

I live in Sharpsburg GA in a subdivision and found this worm in my driveway last night. I have never seen one or heard of it before its about 12 inches long maybe longer glad to know there harmless . I was worried it had crawled out of one of the family pets it looked out of place on the driveway.(lol)

Neutral sunnee1 On May 16, 2010, sunnee1 from Fontana, CA wrote:

Fontana Cal, 5-17-10. I too was scared thought it was a cobra-a baby but still... the way it raised its head at me after i touched it-oh my, it was awful!

Neutral seekerc On May 24, 2010, seekerc from Boswell, PA wrote:

Just found 2 of these worms today. Never saw one ever before. One was attached to an earthworm.

Neutral rachelharris33 On Jun 4, 2010, rachelharris33 from Brandon, MS wrote:

06/03/2010 - Brandon, MS (Reservoir area)

My husband and I just found one of these on our living room floor - don't know how it got inside, but we initially thought it was a small snake, and then we thought it might be some sort of parasite. Glad to know that it's just a worm-eater and not gonna try to take up residence inside of any of us! We have it in a jar with water right now, and I will take pictures and upload them tomorrow. Like others who've posted here, we've recently gotten a ton of rain. Our creature is grayish-brown with several black stripes going longitudinally down his body, and a freaky triangular head. It is approx. 8-10 inches long, but hard to tell since he seems to like being all coiled up. GROSS!!

Negative jeeper186 On Jun 9, 2010, jeeper186 from Sacramento, CA wrote:

Finding this hammerhead in my greenhouse. This morning I found about 10 of them eating a good worm. Guess this is why I have not seen as many worms this year in the garden. Now just to find out where to get that orange oil.. Thanks to everyone here helping each other with info.

Negative alfu On Jun 29, 2010, alfu from Gainesville, FL wrote:

Want to remove the clearcoat off of the paint job of your car? Drop one of these worms on it!

Neutral Leaper On Sep 18, 2010, Leaper from Novato, CA wrote:

Yesterday some kindergarteners found this worm on their play yard in Novato, CA. At first I thought it was a leech, which totally freaked me out. Now I know what it is and can share the info with them.

Neutral Tmacias On Sep 26, 2010, Tmacias from Fresno, CA wrote:

I had never seen one of these in my life. I live in Fresno CA. After moving a wet cardboard box I saw one of these worms. It was a good thing I didn't try to smash it up to kill it. I threw it back in the flower bed. Now, knowing what it is and does, I will be on the hunt to kill these things. I just hope I can keep them from messing up my garden when I plant it in a few weeks.

Negative TexasPuddyPrint On Sep 28, 2010, TexasPuddyPrint from Edinburg, TX wrote:

UGH!!! Talk about ugggghhhhly!!! Rained lots and found one of these on the bottom of a potted plant. Had never seen one before - googled and came up with good ol' DG!!! Put it in a plastic container since I didn't know what it was - now that I do and am looking for it I can't find it in all the dirt I put in with it. Am going to give it to the local USDA at work. Don't want an earthworm eating predator in my yard! ~ Cat

Positive danberg36 On Nov 8, 2010, danberg36 from Riverside, CA wrote:

I found this worm attached to the back of my dog's front leg. The dog was very agitated and trying to get it off. When I took it off, it immediately attached it's mouth to my skin, so I believe it was leaching from my dog. This appears to be a leach (blood sucking) type of activity. I didn't leave it on my skin long enough to see if it would draw blood..... Anyone know if this is a leach of any kind?

Neutral RotorRanch On Nov 13, 2010, RotorRanch from Fayetteville, GA wrote:

This afternoon, while working on a car in my driveway, I picked up a piece of a 4x4 to use on the jack to raise the car. Under the 4x4 were about 30 roly-poly bugs, and this Land Planarian. I had no idea what it was so I got an old babyfood jar and put it in there. Later this evening I googled "flat worms in Gerogia" and found a description on a University of Florida site, then found this site. I figured I'd sign up here and report this worm, since I see none have been reported in Fayetteville, GA yet.

More pics here:


Neutral southernmomma On Apr 21, 2011, southernmomma from Titus, AL wrote:

I took the kids out to the bus this morning. It was still cloudy. Our climate is VERY humid, and it has been raining a lot in the past few weeks. Walking back to the house, I noticed this "thing" on our walkway. Yuck! I thought it was a snake at first, but it didn't slither like a snake. So I bent down to examine it. It was mucus like, similar to a snail. It has stripes on it's back and is a dark brown color. It does have the hammerhead, and is about 10" long. I scooped it up with a butter knife and put it in some moist dirt in a disposable bowl with some air holes poked in the top. If nothing else it will be a good science lesson for my children. I have to say as many others on this site have, I have NEVER seen anything like this. I've lived in central Alabama my whole life (29 years), and this thing scared me near to death! I don't know exactly what to do with it now. ?????

Neutral carolynsuetoo On May 21, 2011, carolynsuetoo from Porterville, CA wrote:

I found one under a strawberry plant pot in a very moist, dark area. Didn't know what it was and had my husband look, he didn't know what it was and tossed it back. I didn't like the looks of it and crushed it, I don't know why I did that. (1) I didn't know that they kill earthworms; (2) Why do I have as many snails that I do if hammerheads are around; (3) They can be cut into how many pieces and produce how many new worms? Is that bad? Will they eat all those good little guys (earthworms)?

Neutral PoseyLover On Jun 5, 2011, PoseyLover from Canyon Country, CA wrote:

Busy transplanting plants from pots to ground. While investigating the rootball of plant taken from pot. I'd noted some odd trails of root distruction; from other type of root eating insect.. While holding the rootball in hand, I feel this cool wet sensation on my hand... I take a moment to look ~ What do I see? A "Hammerhead Worm" coming out of the middle of the rootball. It keeps coming & coming.. Weird visual for sure... I did not know what this was. Having experienced this worm before, but much, much larger I might add. I was unable, at that time to find an answer, as to what it was... Well, leave it to Dave's Garden and all who are part of this wonderful site. I now know, what it is. Yippeee ! Going to keep it safe till school starts and take the specimen to the elementary school for students to learn .... . ( I know I have some rouge slugs that would love to give their life up for the cause) hahaha
Happy Hunting & Gardening Everyone

Neutral creepedout On Sep 12, 2011, creepedout from San Diego, CA wrote:

I found this planarian in my house! I freaked out & thought my dog threw it up, thought it was a roundworm. After searching the internet, I believe it is the bipalium kewense. Bug was about 3 inches long, and had "goo" on it. I live in San Diego. I'm going to download a photo of it in a minute. I'm hoping it didn't come out of my dog!!

Negative Zoemommy On Sep 26, 2011, Zoemommy from Dallas, TX wrote:

Found 3 in our Dallas yard near White Rock Lake in the past 2 years. The first one was seen in January 09 while installing a patio so we had been digging. Weird looking thing. Took photos & Google search to learn about it & was shocked to see how rare it is & there were states with 0 or only 1 sighting. Since then we have had a hard time with our lush flower beds & our lawns(formerly fabulous) turf grass died. I added new sod & cared for it carefully. Planted more bulbs, divided my iris, added buckets of earth worms, nematodes, lady bugs, mantis ,diatomaceous earth etc. doing the basics... Sod DIED, flower beds looks weak & even my aggressive iris wont thrive. Next truck beds of hummus, top soil, compost & slit delivered & spread. Added bag after bag of grass seeds, water bill went up 300% from watering the grass seeds 2x a day. We STILL only have a DIRT lawn & ill flower beds. Then I discovered another worm in August (2011) and on the other side of the house I saw another one this September(2011)...It's battle time!

Negative DancingTree On Oct 14, 2011, DancingTree from Ceres, CA
(Zone 9b) wrote:

After 30 years of living and gardening in the same place, this year I've begun to find both kinds of land planarians in my garden - Bipalium kewense (long, brown with 2 stripes) and Bipalium adventitium (shorter, yellowish, one stripe). They hide under moist planters, pots, bricks. So I began using their hideouts as "traps", places I check to find them so I can then kill them. To kill them, I drop the planarians into a lidded plastic container (yogurt cup) that has 1/4" of diatomaceous earth in the bottom. I secure the lid. It works! I go out and hunt them after I irrigate, after rains, and in the morning. I check my "traps" and am regularly finding planarians. Physical / mechanical control is effective. By killing the adults, they cannot reproduce or increase populations. This way I'm protecting my earthworms.

Negative dlaraway On Nov 10, 2011, dlaraway from Redding, CA wrote:

I have seen these in my garden areas for the last 3 years, but didn't know what they were. Finally went online and discovered that it was worse than I thought. I had figured they were some type of flukeworm that had come from animals, but now I see they are something that may wipe out my earthworms. I'll have to be more aggressive about getting rid of them.

Neutral leia1711 On Dec 6, 2011, leia1711 from Phoenixville, PA wrote:

One of my dogs brought this worm in after a walk - he must have sniffed something and picked it up somehow. It's about 60 degrees outside tonight in Eastern Pennsylvania (even though it's December), and raining. I have never seen a worm like this before and I thought it was some kind of parasite until I googled it and found this page. Thankfully it's a garden worm so I don't have to make a trip to the vet!

Neutral markums069 On Jan 25, 2012, markums069 from Kure Beach, NC wrote:

For the first time I saw what was a strange looking thin, worm-like 'bug' on my smooth cement driveway. It was a relative cool, moist, yet temperate (65 degrees F), winter day. The worm, which moved like a slug, was attempting to get under the house it appeared. It struck me, because it was a beige color, about 6 inches long, thin, with about 3 black streaks running the length of the worm. It had at one end what appeared to be a shovel-head or hammerhead. I live a 1/4 mile from the beach, but near federally protected forest land. I've positively identified it as a Hammerhead Worm (land planarian) (Bipalium kewense). It was a such a unique looking specimen I had to look it up. I thought it was a baby snake at first. There is no picture, because when I attempted to pick it up, it broke in half, and then upon a further attempt, broke into quarters.

Positive phantera On Mar 9, 2012, phantera from Norristown, PA wrote:

If anyone finds one of these worms in SouthEast PA and wants to get rid of it please let me know - we teach about flatworms in our biology class and would love to have some of these to show the kids. (And I won't release the worm - they'll stay in captivity forever, don't worry.)

Positive BREADMAN01 On Apr 16, 2012, BREADMAN01 from Sachse, TX wrote:

This is a very interesting worm I was not really sure as what it was, I have seen some interesting bugs but the hammerhead worm is at the top of my list.Im kind of curious of its origin, how it came to be , where it was first found, and how do they know they eat earthworms,snails and slugs. Not sure if its good or bad to have around ,thanks for the web site

Neutral gorgeairshow On Apr 19, 2012, gorgeairshow from Lyle, WA wrote:

I had my first encounter with this worm yesterday as I was transplanting strawberries. I have been an active gardener in the Columbia Gorge area for 30+ yrs and have not seen this one before. I googled "flat head worm" and it brought me to this web site and gave me the info I needed about this little predator worm. I will eliminate any that I find in the future.
I joined "Dave's Garden" and will enjoy it I am sure!

Negative NuggetUSC On Apr 23, 2012, NuggetUSC from Cayce, SC wrote:

On April 23, 2012 , in Cayce, SC just across the river from Columbia SC I found one of these nasty things under a stepping stone by the garden. First I swore it was a tape worm then Googled and found this site which by the way was very helpful! Anyways, after reading the comments It's time for some EXTERMINATION!!!! Any invasive species should be eradicated in my eyes. They are not meant to be here so they should be dealt with! Just look at what has happened across the US with invasive species(which 90% of them come from ASIA) . I personally used the salt method and it killed him almost instantly. I didn't feel like going to find "orange oil" and I wanted this pest gone immediately. But it was kind of weird when I salted it ,because I think it tried to take itself apart (maybe a survival instinct)! When I put the first bit of salt on it it emitted a white "goo" and broke into three pieces! so I just poured salt all over him and he was done! We plant a victory garden here every year and this is the first I have seen of this pest. I rely on my earthworms here in my garden. I cannot afford to waste money on a garden when there are hammerhead worms eating my good earthworms! They must die!

Negative jtapp1 On May 5, 2012, jtapp1 from Gonzales, LA wrote:

I built my house in 2004... bug free. In 2006 I 1st found this worm. Never seen it before. Now I see more of them than red worms. And instead of being just a few in the front yard they are all around my house.

I assume that for every one that I see, there are a hundred in the ground.

Good website. Very helpful information.

Neutral Kenlynt83 On Jul 2, 2012, Kenlynt83 from Walhalla, SC wrote:

Yep, found one today. Very weird looking. I really want to make sure they are harmful to earthworms before I murder them. I hate to kill things unnecessarily!

Negative JJAj On Jul 17, 2012, JJAj from Lacombe, LA wrote:

On 7/11/12, Lacombe, LA. I observed worm on cement porch, upon moving it to lawn I noted quite different from common worm by the head. Online search and correspondence confirmed "photos is most likely Bipalium kewense", a parasite of earth worms. After observation and photos I disposed of worms in ~10 ml of rubbing alcohol.

Neutral icyryce4 On Aug 1, 2012, icyryce4 from Sacramento, CA
(Zone 9b) wrote:

Found this worm when I was moving my pot of dahlias that were in the shade. It was coiled up underneath, never seen anything like it before... It was looooongggg, at least half a foot, and raced off as soon as it noticed it was uncovered. Saw these comments and noticed that it eats earthworms? Might have to do something about that...

Positive sriduttvnayak On Aug 5, 2012, sriduttvnayak wrote:

I found this recently near swamp in Sringeri, Karnataka, India. Adding a few pictures of it..

Neutral furret On Aug 21, 2012, furret wrote:

Came home after a big storm and saw a small one just moving along the side of my house. Pretty and different. *Central Florida

Negative KrisKrin On Sep 18, 2012, KrisKrin from Gainesville, GA wrote:

Found one in my driveway this evening (Tuesday, Sept. 18) and after reading the posts, definitely do NOT want it in my yard, although I'm sure it's not the only one. I plan to call the nearest high school, and see if they want it for study in the biology class. It could be interesting to them.

Negative Pickelpotpie On Sep 23, 2012, Pickelpotpie from Summerville, SC wrote:

I have a cat that is about a year old. I noticed him licking his front arm and i checked him out and he had this worm attached to a sore under his armpit, both ends of its body were out of the cat but the middle was inside my cats arm, i pulled it out with tweezers and my cat seems to be pleased, rinsed it out with hydrogen peroxide and some rubbing alcohol, ive looked up this worm by searched hammerhead as that is what it reminded me of scared me to death thought it was a leech..should pet owners be concerned if they have an open sore that the worm wont try to get in and lay eggs or possible kill...??? im calling my vet tomorrow with more information just to be safe...

Negative DiznDat On Sep 25, 2012, DiznDat from Lafayette, CA
(Zone 9b) wrote:

I didn't know that there was a predator for earthworms. These things are creepy. My daughter has found two, so far, in Danville, CA. They caught one and had it in a jar in the house. It got out through one of the small air holes poked in the lid. They captured it before it got off the table. This is the dry season now. We probably won't have rain until October.

Neutral mustangr On Oct 5, 2012, mustangr from Richlands, NC wrote:

I had just taken my two dogs outside around 6pm and tied them onto their runners. When I turned to climb the doorsteps I noticed something on my leg (my shin) and when I reached down to pull it off, I discovered it was some sort of worm! I held it in my hand and noticed it's 'hammerhead' shape at one end, the body was a chocolate color with three long, thin, black lines down the length of it's 7-8 inch body.

I've lived here 16 years and have never seen one of these before. My first thought was that it was a type of leech because of it's broad-like head, flat appearing body and the way it moved about. Thanks to my 'google' search and Dave's Garden site here, I now know exactly what it was.

It is constantly humid and hot here in eastern N.C., and the ground water tables are relatively high - I'm just surprised I haven't seen them before.

Neutral Saucata On Nov 23, 2012, Saucata from Hebbronville, TX wrote:

If they eat earth worms are they a pest that should be gotten rid of?

Negative honeylieg On Mar 15, 2013, honeylieg from Maple Valley, WA wrote:

I'm super frustrated about this critter. In my region, Western Washington, there is no eliminating slugs only management and control. I'm not really sure how to contend with species. This species is considered invasive for this region and will thrive in this region. I haven't tried an Orange oil. Neem oil wasn't effective enough. If Orange oil doesn't work, I'll may have to resort to some pesticides.

Neutral WormGuy17 On Apr 1, 2013, WormGuy17 from Parkdale, MO wrote:

Would anybody be willing to send me some of these worms? I'd like to learn more about them.

Neutral milesbatty On Apr 18, 2013, milesbatty from Concord, NC wrote:

Wormguy, I just found one on the sidewalk. I saved it, do you want it? I presume I can ship it to you from North Carolina.

Negative sallypsb On May 11, 2013, sallypsb from Bethlehem, PA wrote:

We found the single striped hammerhead worm (Bipalium adventitium, I believe) under a board in garden after rain. We are around 60 years old and had never seen one before. We like our earthworms and don't want them to disappear, which apparently could happen. Any imported critter that can reproduce from a little piece of itself and has no natural predators here makes me nervous, besides.

Positive playera On May 30, 2013, playera from Charlotte, NC wrote:

This worm was crawling across the sidewalk at a friend's house in Charlotte, NC. I don't think I ever saw one before, so it was interesting. The list of sightings doesn't include Charlotte. Today was warm (78-80 degrees) and dry. It was sighted about 2:00 pm. The grass had been cut in the morning. I will look for another tomorrow. Rated positive because it is unusual to me and I'm not a gardener who might know negatives about this worm.

Neutral fractalsky On Jun 25, 2013, fractalsky from Davis, CA wrote:

On June 25, 2013, in Davis, CA. My 7 year old son found it on the lawn outside of my place. It has been raining for two days. My son though it was a moving mushroom. I have never seen anything like it before. I am glad that I found this page.

Neutral missymoo1 On Jul 9, 2013, missymoo1 from Villa Rica, GA wrote:

saw one in our garage last night. we live in villa rica ga. we put it in the yard. it was about 10 inchs long

Neutral V13j0 On Jul 19, 2013, V13j0 from Wharton, NJ wrote:

This little guy surprised me. I am on vacation and saw this strange creature and had to know what it was.
Was just glad it was not a predator of humans, and have reported it.
Balsamic vinegar seems to have done the trick, nothing moving after a squirt.
So sad that invasive species find homes in the USA so easily.
Was under the impression that this invasive species would have been stopped at the border. Priorities are not what they should be.

Neutral Swaughtel On Jul 21, 2013, Swaughtel from China Grove, NC wrote:

Never seen one before until tonight, ugly as sin! It was crawling across my driveway. Now I know not to split it apart though. Thanks for the info!

Neutral Edwin5050 On Jul 23, 2013, Edwin5050 from Fulton, MS wrote:

Found them in my flower beds in Fulton, MS 38843. Killed 12 of them on the sidewalk last night. My garden is not doing very good this year and I blame it on these monsters.

Negative parker22 On Aug 6, 2013, parker22 from Lesslie, SC wrote:

Killed over 160 in two days on my driveway after a heavy rain. Any chance that was the majority of them? Rock Hill, SC

Neutral tbolt1 On Aug 22, 2013, tbolt1 from Westminster, SC wrote:

Saw them this summer for the first time ever in Westminster, SC. Found that sprinkling table salt on them kills them the same way it does slugs

Neutral kmurph428 On Sep 23, 2013, kmurph428 from Newnan, GA wrote:

I keep finding dead hammerhead worms in my basement. They are dried up when I find them and surrounded by or found near a trail of dried up goo. I've yet to find a live one, but I have cats and I don't really want them eating these worms. Is there any way to get rid of them? Or to repel them? Obviously something is killing them, but yet they keep coming in?! I'm sure it has to do with the extremely rainy summer we had in Georgia this year. But even with a dehumidifier running down there I still keep finding them. Any thoughts or suggestions?

Negative holmes1012 On Jun 20, 2014, holmes1012 from Duncan, SC wrote:

I seen one on my walkway this morning for the first time. I have never seen one. I didn't know what it was until I started researching it. I didn't know if it was a worm or a snake! I read several things about it and didn't know it ate earthworms and was a harmful invasive creature. Now I wish I wouldn't have just let it go!

Positive Baby9974 On Jul 8, 2014, Baby9974 from West Palm Beach, FL wrote:

Lived in S Florida for 27 years, never encountered one of these until seeing one climbing on my door last night - juvenile, about 1.5" long. Funny thing is, there was a crushed snail shell on my patio the night before, no sign of the slug though. Could it be the adult worm ate it the night before?? I don't mind that they eat snails, the snails eat my plants, so I say thumbs up for these worms!

Positive dixxie On Sep 1, 2014, dixxie from Monroe, GA wrote:

Found the first one I`ve ever seen, my wife said it was a blood sucker. Looked up hammer head worm on the net and it brought me here. I signed up and started reading all the bad things about the little guy I had just caught, especially the fact it ate earthworms. I went outside turned over a couple stones and found a 4" salamander, I pulled it out of the cup it was in, dropped it in front of the salamander; goodbye planarian bipalian or whatever it was. I live on 20 acres, mostly woods and have thousands of newts and salamanders, guess that`s why I`ve never seen one.

Negative animike On Sep 21, 2014, animike from Dallas, GA wrote:

Found on doorstep rug at 2 am. Was about 10-12 inches long. I had never seen anything like it so I took a picture (posted #86) It scanned it's head back and forth over the ground as it moved forward.-Very much like a hammerhead shark hunting. Didn't know it was something bad so let it be. (Oops, -sorry earthworms) Should have fed it to the chickens, although it probably would have freaked them out also.

Neutral Blaurel On Oct 12, 2014, Blaurel from Columbus, GA wrote:

I saw one in my backyard and had no idea what I was. The main concern was that it could be harmful to my pets. Very interesting looking creature.

Neutral shores90 On Apr 30, 2015, shores90 from Midway, GA wrote:

Found this worm crawling on our front porch the other evening. I'd never seen one before so I snapped a quick photo with my phone to look it up later. Glad I found out what it was. Looks disgusting and I already hate worms. I was super grossed out to find this thing. We live right off a lake in Midway, GA. I sure hope I don't have to see anymore of these. Yuck.

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