update: mites on versi sling

ArachnoJoost

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 6, 2002
Messages
533
this is about the versicolor that had mites.
Ok, my versicolor sling just molted today, I took the spider out quickly (but gently of course). I saw mites hanging in the web so I cleaned and disinfected the little container thoroughly to try to remove them all. I couldn't see any on the 'new' spider, so hope for the best.
This is my little problemchild by the way: the first molt she/he had in my care she lost a pedipalp, leg 2 and crippled leg 1 (all on the same side). I carefully handfed her and she made it through to the next molt, where she regained leg 2 and the pedipalp (albeit small) and completely lost the crippled leg (1). The third molt was today, her leg 2 and pedipalp are normal size again, and leg 1 has grown back, but small. So she/he now has 8 legs again, and by the next molt everything should be back to normal.
Keep you posted,
Joost
 

Paul Day

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Sep 8, 2002
Messages
123
Mites are a problem when enclosures become too humid. To counteract mites in a Versicolor enclosure, I suggest using vermiculite (which is a dry, innert material which doesn't fester mites easily). Otherwise, the best thing to get rid of mites is a dry enclosure without "cricket parts" left all over the place. Make sure you aren't feeding the spider as much as it can't finish a meal...
Most mites are rather harmless contrary to popular belief, few encounters are with parasitic mites, rather with scavengers which are feeding off organic debris. But it's better to be safe then sorry, and fix the problem.

Anyway, just advice to anyone who's having a mite problem.

Pauly
 

ArachnoJoost

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 6, 2002
Messages
533
Paul,
I discovered the mites when the little versi had just stopped eating and was getting ready to molt, so I could't lower the humidity too much (as you have read this spider has had its share of molting problems).
I placed it into a little container with no substrate, only a small water dish. I threw the container it was in away (substrate was potting soil). When it has hardened up from the molt and the mites are still there, I will decrease the humidity.
I know the mites aren't parasitic, that was not my worry. My worry was that there were lots of them around the chelicerae and it seemed to bother the spider.
thanx for the input,
Joost
 

Wade

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 16, 2002
Messages
2,933
Joost-

Thanks for the update, I was wondering how that went, glad it was successful.

Although a small number of mites in a cage is no big deal, population explosion can, at least, annoy the hell out of a spider, and sometimes even clog the booklungs. I often wonder if the standard advice-drying the cage-is really the best thing when there's already a big population. After all, the mites will tend to congregate wherever any moisture remains...i.e. on the spider itself! Keeping the cage on the dry side as a PREVENTATIVE measure is probably a good idea, but once the proboblem gets big, more drastic measures may be called for.

I've found versi's to be a bit more delicate than most. Congradulations on helping your "problem child" through a tough time!

Wade
 
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