Mites Harmful to Roaches?

Tenevanica

Arachnodemon
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
727
I've just noticed that my Blaberus craniifer enclosure has become infested with mites. This is my first time encountering mites, and seeing they've found me, this won't be the last time. The mites are palish in color and seem to congregate on the bodies of the roaches. They can climb smooth surfaces. I've no idea if they're grain mites or not, but that's not what I'm concerned about. I found several dead nymphs, all of the covered in mites. I have no idea if its the mites causing the deaths, but I guess it's better safe than sorry. What would you suggest I do? I'm considering relocating every roach to a new enclosure with different substrate, but seeing as the mites like to live on the roaches I doubt I'd be able to get the roaches away from the mites. What should I do? Do you think it's the mites harming the roaches?
 

Chris LXXIX

ArachnoGod
Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
5,825
I have absolutely no idea, man, sorry :-/

Always tought that the real deal for harm (seriously) a roach (no matter which) was a good boot or, to an extent, a very powerful spray garbage... for that those are almost bulletproof for what I know about.
 

Tenevanica

Arachnodemon
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
727
I have absolutely no idea, man, sorry :-/

Always tought that the real deal for harm (seriously) a roach (no matter which) was a good boot or, to an extent, a very powerful spray garbage... for that those are almost bulletproof for what I know about.
Yeah, the roaches I keep aren't your run-of-the-mill kitchen roaches. These are large tropical blaberids, and though still hardy, are a bit more sensitive to different conditions. I don't want to lose this colony, I've worked hard to get it going and B. craniifer is an amazing species.
 

Hisserdude

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 18, 2015
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2,337
Sounds like grain mites, can you get any pictures? I doubt they straight out killed your nymphs, technically the only way that grain mites can kill your roaches is by covering up their breathing spiracles when they hunker down and become immobile due to lack of food or moisture.

I'd thoroughly clean out the enclosure and replace the substrate, decor, etc., then start a more strict feeding regiment to avoid leftovers, make sure you are feeding them in a bowl, and start removing any dead bodies you see or get a clean up crew to do it for you, a single dead roach carcass can sustain TONS of grain mites. Unfortunately drying out the enclosure wouldn't be a good idea with this species of roach as they need moist substrate.

Hope this helps a bit, and I hope your grain mite numbers go down! I myself am having some trouble with grain mites, though the Tropical pink springtails available at Roachcrossing.com and the other mite species I have seem to keep them under control.
 

Tenevanica

Arachnodemon
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
727
Sounds like grain mites, can you get any pictures? I doubt they straight out killed your nymphs, technically the only way that grain mites can kill your roaches is by covering up their breathing spiracles when they hunker down and become immobile due to lack of food or moisture.

I'd thoroughly clean out the enclosure and replace the substrate, decor, etc., then start a more strict feeding regiment to avoid leftovers, make sure you are feeding them in a bowl, and start removing any dead bodies you see or get a clean up crew to do it for you, a single dead roach carcass can sustain TONS of grain mites. Unfortunately drying out the enclosure wouldn't be a good idea with this species of roach as they need moist substrate.

Hope this helps a bit, and I hope your grain mite numbers go down! I myself am having some trouble with grain mites, though the Tropical pink springtails available at Roachcrossing.com and the other mite species I have seem to keep them under control.
It's gonna be a pain in the ass to remove every individual, but I'll do it. I'll also order some Sinella curviseta from Kyle if I can get a hold of him. I still don't know what's killing my nymphs though...
 

Hisserdude

Arachnoking
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Apr 18, 2015
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It's gonna be a pain in the ass to remove every individual, but I'll do it. I'll also order some Sinella curviseta from Kyle if I can get a hold of him. I still don't know what's killing my nymphs though...
Yeah, I know the feeling. At least Blaberus are pretty calm and can't climb, try moving 100+ Parcoblatta americana out of their cage, adults and all the tiny hatchlings, cause of a bad fungus infestation. :shifty: The things we do for our roaches. :rolleyes:

How wet is your substrate? I can't really think of a reason for your nymphs to be dying unless the mites have been encrusting them, which I'm sure you would have noticed by now. The only thing I can think of that would kill the nymphs would be stress induced by constant tactile contact with the mites, however since the nymphs burrow most of the time, that shouldn't really be too much of a problem. Perhaps it's just a normal for a certain amount of nymphs to die off in that species? I've never kept them, so I couldn't say.

You'll have to wait until after his trip to AZ, I could probably send some for free though once we do our trade. ;)
 

Tenevanica

Arachnodemon
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
727
Yeah, I know the feeling. At least Blaberus are pretty calm and can't climb, try moving 100+ Parcoblatta americana out of their cage, adults and all the tiny hatchlings, cause of a bad fungus infestation. :shifty: The things we do for our roaches. :rolleyes:

How wet is your substrate? I can't really think of a reason for your nymphs to be dying unless the mites have been encrusting them, which I'm sure you would have noticed by now. The only thing I can think of that would kill the nymphs would be stress induced by constant tactile contact with the mites, however since the nymphs burrow most of the time, that shouldn't really be too much of a problem. Perhaps it's just a normal for a certain amount of nymphs to die off in that species? I've never kept them, so I couldn't say.

You'll have to wait until after his trip to AZ, I could probably send some for free though once we do our trade. ;)
Half the substrate is wet, the other half is dry. They can regulate as needed. There aren't too many nymphs dead. One subadult and a half dozen or so smaller ones. I thought there were more dead at first, but it turns out the exuvia of the small nymphs were mysteriously incredibly intact...

They need a bigger enclosure anyway. The problem may be that the carrying capacity of the 6 quart container they're in has been reached. Their population has kind of exploded in the last six months...

I could probably send some for free though once we do our trade.
I'll take that offer. ;)
 

Hisserdude

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 18, 2015
Messages
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Half the substrate is wet, the other half is dry. They can regulate as needed. There aren't too many nymphs dead. One subadult and a half dozen or so smaller ones. I thought there were more dead at first, but it turns out the exuvia of the small nymphs were mysteriously incredibly intact...

They need a bigger enclosure anyway. The problem may be that the carrying capacity of the 6 quart container they're in has been reached. Their population has kind of exploded in the last six months...



I'll take that offer. ;)
That seems good, under-watering shouldn't be a problem then. Guess that's not too high of a die off, though half a dozen small nymphs dying off for no apparent reason still seems odd to me....

Maybe, the larger Blaberus seem to handle overcrowding pretty poorly, increasing substrate depth should take care of the problem for a little bit, until you can move them to a new enclosure.
Keep us updated on the mite situation, hopefully you will be able to keep them under control!

Sounds good, will be sure to include some with the Rhabdoblatta then. :)
 
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