Giant earth worms have started emerging from flood waters in large numbers as they try to escape the torrential rainfall currently lashing Queensland.
The worms have been forced to seek shelter in rural properties, as south-east parts of the state have been hammered with nearly six months worth of rain in the last couple of days.
A motel owner at Tamborine Mountain in the Gold Coast hinterland – which has received 550mm of rain in the past 48 hours – discovered a large worm under the door of a guest’s room.
Darren Jack said the heavy rain at the Tall Trees Motel had ‘created havoc’ for nearby wildlife, with other animals – including spiders – spotted climbing up the walls in recent days.
Motel owner Darren Jack said the size of the earthworms hasn’t shocked him after the continual recent rain in Queensland
Mr Jack added the earth worm was ‘comparatively small’ compared to others he had found in the past – which can grow to as big as 2.5 metres.
‘There’s a massive, massive earthworm trying to get in under the door and it’s trying to constrict itself,’ he said in a video shared to the motel’s Facebook page.
Mr Jack also said he released the worm back into the wild after after showing it to his wife, who was ‘horrified.’
‘At the moment, the guests are all safe inside. And so are the earthworms trying to get in,’ he told The Courier-Mail.
‘It was trying to escape all the saturated soil… just trying to get into shelter.’
He said the creature was likely a digaster longmani – also known as a giant earthworm – a breed famous for growing as wide as a garden hose.
The digaster longmani worms are rarely seen as they live underground. They are usually only spotted following excavations or heavy rain.
Julia Bruhn with a giant earthworm, also known as ‘digaster longmani’ – which are only found only in southeast Queensland and northern NSW