Good info. Do you think Hypoaspis Miles would live in a dryer substrate? For example if the centipede enclosure is kept on the dry side, do you think they'd survive long enough to tackle some mites in there or does the substrate need to be damp always? I am thinking for species such as "white leg" etc. that needs a dryer enclosure.So, I'm going to preface this post with a warning, read the whole thing! There is a method I have used in the past with success, but it may have long term repercussions to your hobby should you ever want to go bioactive. You can order and use predatory mites (Hypoaspis miles) to get rid of grain and other mites. They're about $30 plus overnight shipping. I had a S. dehaani with a bad mite infection when I first started in this hobby. I pulled it out of its enclosure, placed it on dry substrate with a large water bowl, and poured some of the mite laden substrate inside. The grain mites were gone within two weeks (I also noticed some really odd behavior from the dehaani. It would turn the first third of its body and lay on the top substrate, exposing its back where the mites were located. It reminded me of a reef fish using a cleaning station on a coral reef to have smaller fish remove external parasites. Really, really odd). Now everything I read said that once the predatory mites exhausted their food supply, they would turn cannibistic and the population would self extinguish. Great, I thought. It was wrong. The context of the articles I read vis a vis H. miles were intended for outside gardeners with spider mite problems. In those conditions, yes the H. miles might disappear from other predators or just simply reduce their population enough to not be seen, but they won't disappear indoors. To this day, almost three years later, I still have a H. miles population in my animal room. While I've never had a single grain mite problem or spider mite problem on my plants since, I can no longer keep springtails in my bioactive setups. As I learned from @boina in this thread here, H. miles is not a specialized predatory mite, but a generalist that can scavenge and survive on organic matter. This has allowed a small population to survive in my enclosures. Whenever I try to reintroduce springtails, the H. miles population comes back with a vengeance and wipes out the springtails in a matter of weeks. Now, boina did mention that there are specialized predatory mites that only target other mites, but I don't have a species name to give you and have no idea if they can be purchased. You'll have to weigh the pros and cons yourself for your situation. I went nuclear because of clear distress from the dehaani and bad information on their self destructive tendencies. In hindsight, I probably wouldn't have done it knowing what I know now. I'm letting you know this is an option, but there are consequences.
I used to keep beetles (Allomyrina, Xylotrupes, Dorcus, Dynastes) too, and there’s a type of spray that actually works quite well on (adult) beetles to get rid of mites, unfortunately it could hurt arthropods. Also I stopped keeping beetles mostly because I don’t have patience and adults (specifically NOT stag beetles) die fairly quickly and you know how it is with the U.S., it’s hard to get legally imported beetles. Anyways, I watched the video, to summarize it, his method is to put beetles in dry saw dust, I have never tried this method, but I tried giving centipedes completely dry substrate for a week, the results were very limited in my experience, after a week I couldn’t help but gave them a water dish because I don’t want them to die. Maybe saw dust has a special powers, idk, I’ll give it a try next time when I have visible mites, as of right now my mite problem is gone because I just drowned my pedes and brushed out most if not all of the mites.
Btw do you keep beetles?
I know a site but they ship brown boxes so idk if u interestedNo I do not. I'm located in the USA too, getting ahold of stag species that I want is basically impossible. I tried local beetles but they need that cold weather during winter. I can't really offer than in my current situation.
Glad to hear that! I might give it a try. Did the mites disappear overnight? That’s quite amazing. Also I’ve tried mite spray used for snakes (definitely not a good idea) and I ended up killing a pede, and recently I did it again (yes I know I shouldn’t do it) but the portion is controlled really greatly and I ended up cleaning most if not all mites on the pede.So, I noticed one of my youngest polymorpha had a mite issue. Those little guys that just plaster themselves onto every surface of a pede. About a week ago, I ordered a container of Amblyseius cucumeris mites for my houseplants to get rid of Thrips and spidermites. They worked so well, and knew they were considered a generalist pest mite predator, I decided to see if they would eat the mites on the Poly.
The poly was under pretty bad distress, it was holding its stinging legs oddly away from its face and was just very spooky overall.
The Amblyseius definitely did do the job, its all just very interesting. I put them in there last night and the pede now has a complete lack of hitchhikers. All I see now are some very fat Amblyseius mites walking around, especially exploring the Poly for more delicious mites I'm sure.
So yeah, one solution I've now found is Amblyseius cucumeris mites. Just release some into the pede's enclosure. One and done.
The hitchhiker mites did, yes, I couldn't see any on the pede in the morning. I wish I had taken pictures but I had no idea if the predators would even do anything.Glad to hear that! I might give it a try. Did the mites disappear overnight? That’s quite amazing. Also I’ve tried mite spray used for snakes (definitely not a good idea) and I ended up killing a pede, and recently I did it again (yes I know I shouldn’t do it) but the portion is controlled really greatly and I ended up cleaning most if not all mites on the pede.