by Caoimhe Hegarty

A local family were left in complete shock after a surprise guest arrived in their kitchen sink from their water supply.

The family, who preferred not to be named, were in their Limavady home on Sunday, when a horsehair eel (pictured) came out of their cold water tap.

After being alerted by her son to the tropical eel, which is known to be from the western central Atlantic Ocean, including Florida, USA and the Gulf of Mexico, the local woman said she didn’t believe it was an eel at first.

“It was my son who was at the sink running the cold water when it came out into the sink. Initially, I thought it was a piece of fishing wire but then I saw it swimming about. When I realised what it was, I couldn’t believe it,” said the woman.

“I have never seen anything like this happen before so I was completely shocked. An eel is the last thing you would expect to come out of your tap,” she said, “I don’t have any real concerns about the water but it does make me a little weary to make sure and check the water before drinking it.

The family told the County Derry Post that they informed Northern Ireland Water (NIW) immediately. 

“We reported the incident to Northern Ireland Water on Sunday and they were very quick to come out to investigate it on Monday, so that is reassuring. 

“It’s not a nice to think an eel is in your water but I suppose it would have been a lot worse if someone had have swallowed it.” 

Last night, a spokesperson for Northern Ireland Water said: "Reports of a worm from a cold water tap in the Limavady area are being investigated by NI water. NI Water staff called to the property today and lifted samples for analysis. Our scientific staff will liaise directly with the customer and also provide advice on any remedial work required.

"NI Water is clear that the quality of drinking water in the area is safe. NI Water undertakes a rigorous monitoring regime with over 200,000 tests carried out across Northern Ireland every year to safeguard drinking water quality.

"We will continue to monitor water quality across Northern Ireland to ensure that water quality standards are met and there is no risk to public health."

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