Many deciduous trees attract worms, including maple trees. Maple trees serve as hosts to growing worm larvae. The worms tend to cause aesthetic damage, stunt tree growth and decrease a tree's defenses against disease.
Nightcrawlers closely resemble earthworms and feature long, cylindrical bodies. These worms favor maple tree leaves and are inclined to nibble the leaves down to the skeleton. These are the same worms that fishermen often use as bait.
Cankerworms, also known as inchworms, look like caterpillars in their larva stage and grow into moths in their adult stage. They, too, chew maple tree leaves down to the vein. According to the University of Minnesota, they sometimes cause just as much of a nuisance when spinning their silk from the tree and landing in other parts of the yard.
Green fruitworms are chubby, green caterpillars that feed on maple tree foliage. Adult fruitworms lay their eggs on maple tree leaves, and when those eggs hatch, the larvae eat the greenery and damage new buds and chutes.
Climbing cutworms have light tan bodies with dark brown stripes. Cutworms stunt tree growth in the springtime by eating new greenery when they hatch.