Many an insect can spoil our summer fun. And as if biting mosquitoes, wasps and the like weren’t bad enough, the swimming pool sometimes has the next surprise in store for us. A glance into the water shows us little worms in the pool that you don’t really want to keep company with. Have you ever wondered what those little worms actually are and where they come from? We have compiled a selection of typical larvae and worms that you can also discover in your swimming pool and in some cases are dangerous to your health.
Table of contents
Why are the larvae there in the first place?
Well, not to offend you, but worms in the pool are usually either a sign that the water is dirty, or that the quality of the water is not optimal. With proper care and amount of necessary chemicals, insects will not get good conditions to reproduce or live in the water.
If you notice green spots in the tank, you can assume that you are providing a real feast for the larvae, because these are algae that serve as food for them. So it is a good idea to take care of your swimming pool properly as a preventive measure.
But what if it is already too late and the worms are in the pool? Are they dangerous? And what measures should you take when you discover the unwelcome guests?
Worms in the pool – What are they there?
Mosquito larvae live in water and most of the worms you find in the pool come precisely from mosquitoes :
- White mosquitoes produce harmless larvae in white color.
- Small red worms in the pool come from the chironomid mosquitoes and can cause allergic reactions when they come in contact with human skin.
- Brown larvae come from the mosquitoes and carry the risk of transmitting pathogens, which include not only viruses (e.g., yellow fever and malaria, although fortunately extremely rare in Europe), but even nematodes.
- Mud tube worms in the pool can also be recognized by a red color, but they are more elongated than red mosquito larvae.
When swimming in an infested pool of water, there is a risk of swallowing water, including such larvae. This, in turn, can lead to gastrointestinal infection in some cases.
First aid measures against worms in the pool
So, since worms in the pool pose a certain health risk, you should take action as soon as possible before you enjoy refreshment in the cool water again. This is how you proceed:
Landing net and filtration system
- Get a landing net with very fine mesh. With its help, fish as many worms out of the water as possible. Keep in mind that they will not sit idly by, but will swim into the depths. Therefore, repeat this again after a few hours or days.
- In the next step, you should deprive the little animals of what they need to survive, namely food. So – away with the algae and other insect food! For this purpose, your tank should be equipped with a filtration system that sucks up everything that floats on the surface.
- The same system has a so-called backwash, the purpose of which is to unclog clogged filters by increasing the speed following normal cleaning. This removes all impurities, and this includes worms in the pool.
Check and improve water quality
- Optional, but effective, is also a pool vacuum that you can use, combining with the above steps.
- Test the water quality by means of special strips for pH value, alkalinity and chlorine and, if necessary, work the necessary agents into water (e.g. by chlorine tablets). Keep to the following guide values:
pH value between 7.2 and 7.6 (can be regulated by chlorine; check values weekly)
Alkalinity between 80 and 150 ppm (parts per million)
Calcium in the water between 200 and 400 ppm
Last steps against worms in the pool
- Perform shock chlorination with so-called pool shocker, which should kill all parasites. This unstabilized chlorine remains in the water for only a few minutes.
- Lastly, you can also replace the water. However, you can wait first to see if the previous measures were not already sufficient, as this is costly and, depending on the amount of chemicals still present, prohibited by law (the public sewage treatment system is not suitable for this).
- Once your swimming pool is clean and pure again, you should always pay attention to proper hygiene measures and check the water quality regularly. You can also avoid new worms in the pool by cleaning the water surface daily with a landing net to remove not only obvious dirt, but also eggs that mosquitoes may have laid in the meantime and from which new larvae would hatch.