Sewers are not fun places unless you happen to be a shadowy ninja who looks like a turtle. These stinky tunnels are often associated with unsanitary and disgusting practices, as documented in the 19th century sewers of London. Sewers are dark and dank places where the society's waste is collected and moved along. Down there in the murky waters, where the light of day is not welcome, ominous creatures scuttle and grow.
Of course, not all sewer animals are monsters. Sometimes, animals found in sewers just get caught in the waste system, either lost or trapped by size or circumstance. There are anecdotes a-plenty of animals living in drains, though it admittedly makes for a horrible combination. Compiled here are 13 animals that can actually be found in sewers. Read on to discover interesting facts about the scary and bizarre creatures that live in the smelly underbelly of American civilization.
Tubifex WormsVideo: YouTube
You can find a lot of things in North Carolina, from moonshine to guns to a creature straight from the pits of hell. A YouTube video was released of a strangely pulsing creature that had attached itself to a wall in a sewer in Raleigh. The blood-red mass can be seen throbbing in true creepy fashion, seeming to draw its essence from the wall itself. The video immediately went viral.
Speculation on what it was ranged from space alien to freakish mutant monster, but for a long time no one could say for certainty what it was. After much investigation, it was determined that the pulpy mass was actually a colony of tubifex worms. Appearing to be much larger on camera than in actuality, the worms were "throbbing" in response to the heat of the lights. Others believe it was a colony of small animals called bryozoans, but all experts agree that the decidedly disturbing organism is quite harmless.
In the 1980’s Alligator film, New York City is terrorized by Ramon, a baby alligator who grows to a monstrous size in the sewers. Ramon then devours a few pets and a number of really unlikeable characters. As far back as the 1930s, people have been fascinated by the idea that alligators are actively stalking the New York City sewers.
The truth is that in terms of alligators, there’s not really much going on in NYC. Surprisingly, in the city where you can find almost anything, a reasonable request like an alligator in a frickin’ sewer somehow goes unfulfilled. But that's not the case in that sweltering wonderland of hellish heat, Mickey Mouse, and mosquitoes known as Florida. In Tampa, a nine foot alligator was pulled out of a sewer and the entire encounter was recorded in a video immortalized on YouTube.
Spiders in Australia tend to congregate anywhere that is dark and dry. More than a few of Australia’s charming array of arachnids happily call the sewers home during the arid summer months “down under.” While spiders can’t swim, they can manage to survive off of air bubbles trapped in the hairs on their abdomens, allowing them to survive up to 24 hours underwater.
Black widow and funnel web spiders can easily ride water currents throughout sewer systems, to get back up and into homes through drains and toilets. Australians are frequently cautioned to keep sink stoppers in and toilet seats closed for just that reason, along with checking to make sure they are alone before doing their business.
The idea of colonies of snakes slithering around sewers of their own accord is just plain disturbing. But this was exactly the case in Wenatchee, WA, when contractor Gary Owen was performing a CCTV inspection of the sewers underneath the town. Owen discovered a wriggling nest of about six bull snakes in a municipal sewer pipe about 150 feet from a manhole. He speculates that the snakes were probably pets flushed away by some careless owner.
According to Owen, rescuing the snakes was impossible, so they were sealed off and entombed in order to prevent the slithering non-venomous snakes from escaping the sewers into civilian kitchens and bathrooms.