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PostPosted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 3:52 pm 
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We have seen this black worm around our yard- under rocks, and crawling on our back porch and driveway. In general, I'm a critter-lover and just enjoy watching unique creepy crawlies in nature. BUT these guys look ominous. Can you help identify this worm so we can find out if it's harmful? We've seen information on the Land Planarian (flatworm) on the internet...but we really don't think it's a match. If you know what this worm is, please share!!


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 5:42 am 
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hope others join in, but it looks like a leech.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:34 pm 
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We are wondering if it might be some type of land leech. We also contacted an entomologist from TAMU, but he's also uncertain what this is.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 3:46 am 
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That is indeed a land planarian, of the Platydemus Manokwari variety it looks like. I'm from Hawaii and these were introduced here to control the Giant African snail population.
They spend their time eating snails, slugs, worms, and eachother, and don't pose a threat to humans.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 11, 2010 10:43 pm 
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The problem with identification on this is that the head shape isn't distinct in this shot. Planaria have a triangular head, typically. The rest of it looks like one, though.

This is the kind of mystery critter that you don't want to leave out there, and you don't want to smash it and walk away (all of the bits become new ones). This, if it is a land planarian, needs to be wrapped up in something it can't get out of and thrown in the trash.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 1:15 am 
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I agree with FOUND IT, that this is Platydemus manokwari. I've found quite a few in my yard in Austin, Tx. They are usually found near/along with small snails in wet, humid areas. They emit a large amount of a sticky mucus and if you handle them rough they will pull apart into various pieces that will slide/move off in different directions. They do not have the typical anvil shaped head of other planaria I find in the yard or remember from Biology classes, rather a pointy earthworm look. When touched they sometimes shrink up into a flat, wide, fluke or leach looking creature. I researched these guys recently after finding a bunch under wet bricks near my goose pen. I was concerned they could possibly be a parasitic fluke/worm of geese, but they are not. I've read that they are an invasive species, but don't know how damaging they are. I'm over run with snails, so I'm not too concerned yet. :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:50 am 
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Here's an easy answer to the snails that doesn't involve promoting an invasive species: shallow bowls of beer around the area the snails are damaging. I've been using this very effectively for years. And the cheaper the beer the better.


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