- Feb 25, 2016
Yikes! All the more reason I must continue my ongoing war...Well some mites, grain mites in particular, will enter a dormant state and adhere themselves to a surface when food is low, and your pets count as a surface. When grain mite infestations are particularly bad, they can cover your inverts and block their breathing spiracles, which leads to suffocation. Once you have mites in your home, there is really no getting rid of them, all you can do is try to keep their numbers low.
I recently rehoused my Armadillidium vulgare. While there were springtails in great abundance, there were also small red mites in even greater. But then I imagine not every species of springtail competes with every species of mite? I did not see the larger tan-colored mites that I have found in my millipede enclosures. I really need to get some predatory mites...You probably have springtails in your enclosure along with the mites, which is good, springtails are one of the best defenses against mites. The larger species that you can find for sale like Sinella curviseta, aka the Tropical pink springtails, are particularly good at keeping grain mites under control, however they are a hit and miss with soil mite infestations, and they obviously won't get rid of predatory mites.
Agreed!Just keep the supplemental foods to a minimum, make sure to clean up leftovers, and don't use leaves that are too fresh, as freshly fallen leaves can lead to grain mite outbreaks.
This is true too. I try to take preventative measures to keep from spreading mites and other pests between enclosures. So far, I seem to have been fortunate with my tarantulas, even though half of them are swamp-dwellers. Perhaps there is insufficient nutrients in the substrate I use for them (mix of coir, peat moss and sphagnum moss) to support an infestation.BTW, even keeping your Ts in another room is not an adequate defence against mites, if conditions are right they'll find a way in. I have a millipede cage I keep in the bathroom, no other bugs are kept there and the cage was thoroughly washed and the substrate was sterilized before the pedes were put in, and the cage has never entered the room I have the rest of my bugs in. Yet they still have the same mites the rest of my enclosures have, what probably happened was tha the mites were on my clothes when I was feeding the pedes one time, and got into the enclosure that way.