How to Get Rid of Hammerhead Worms – Fast!

Hammerhead worms are an ecological nightmare in your garden. This predatory species of flatworm is highly invasive and feasts on earthworms, mollusks, and other hammerhead worms.

They also have a regenerative ability that would make Wolverine and Deadpool jealous – which makes them that more difficult to kill.


Are They Dangerous?

Hammerhead worms use a powerful neurotoxin (tetrodotoxin) to paralyze their prey. As far as dangers to people, they don’t prey on humans or pets. That said, should your dog or cat eat one of these nasties, they will be very sick.

They have been found in many states across the U.S:

GeorgiaSouth Carolina
North CarolinaLouisiana
Puerto RicoAlabama
VirginiaNew York
OhioNew Jersey

Difficulty in Killing Them

Hammerhead worms are, as previously noted, very hard to kill. If you cut them in half, they regenerate into two worms. Two worms become four worms and so the cycle goes on.

That said; it’s not impossible to kill these pesky troublemakers – you just need to use the right stuff.

hammerhead worm
By Eduard Solà – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

The Best Ways to Kill Hammerhead Worms

There aren’t many ways to kill these little pests but the best way is to dissolve them. Yes, you read that correctly; you must dissolve them in certain substances in order to kill ‘em.

The things that work are:

  1. Salt
  2. Vinegar
  3. Citrus Oil
  4. Boric Acid
  5. Soap Sprays

Pouring salt or vinegar on them is probably the easiest way to kill them because we all have both of them in our kitchens.

Now, in order for salt to work you have to completely cover the worm in it and make sure it’s completely dissolved before washing out the container. With that said, this method won’t work too well if you’ve got an infestation on your hands.

Boric acid can be used to raise the acidity of the soil in your garden. Hammerhead worms can’t handle highly acidic soil. Raising the acidity on a large scale means that you won’t have to worry about an infestation of hammerhead worms in your garden.

Soap sprays can be used to smother hammerhead worms. You can also use natural pesticides like neem oil and pyrethrum to deal with them. Both are highly toxic, but very effective.

As far as application goes, once again; you have to spray each one individually to kill them off.

You can also use certain synthetic pesticides if you can’t find the natural stuff. Although, it’s important to note that both the natural and synthetic pesticides could potentially be harmful to humans and pets so be careful with them.

In Conclusion

Each of the above-mentioned methods will act quickly to deal with a hammerhead worm problem – just keep the scale of the problem in mind when deciding how to handle it.

The fastest method would probably be to use salt or vinegar, but then you’d have to catch the worms and put them in a container which, when dealing with an infestation, is quite tricky.

hammerhead worm pin

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