Even with a name like they have, Jumping Worms can be a little hard to spot. New York offers a way to find them.

Have You Ever Seen One?

NYS DEC Via Facebook
NYS DEC Via Facebook
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It is highly possible that you have. While New York does warn of the dangers these slimy critters bring to the soil, they aren't exactly a 'new' invasive species. The distinctive white collared worm is actually believed to have been in the United States since the 1800s. Much like some of the invasive insects you hear about, these worms came from another land in potted plants.

They Are Tricky To Spot

Photo by Emiliano Vittoriosi on Unsplash
Photo by Emiliano Vittoriosi on Unsplash
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They do leave some calling cards behind which you can read more about here.

Really Want To Make Sure They Aren't In Your Yard?

Yellow mustard bottle against white background.
Christopher Sciacca/Performance
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Yes, mustard. Instead of the mustard, you would put on your sandwich, you'll want to buy mustard powder instead. According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, a solution of 1/3 cup of yellow mustard seed powder and a gallon of water will help. Take that and pour it over the soil and see some magic happen. If you have these invasive jumping worms, they will begin to rise to the surface.

What If You Do Have Them?

NYS DEC
NYS DEC via Facebook
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They offer up a few things to do should you find them.

  • Leave them in the sun to dry for 10 minutes, then toss them in the garbage.
  • Put them into a sealable bag and throw them away.

And of course, always report any finding of the jumping worm to the NYS DEC.

New York State's Invasive Plants To Be On The Lookout For

These seven invasive plants have become a nuisance to the wildlife and people living in New York State. Learn more about them and how to remove them at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation here.

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