Grain mites

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by aart, May 17, 2015.

  1. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Anyone have first hand experience with grain mites?
    How prevalent are these things?
    Is it ridiculous to try and get rid of them because they are everywhere anyway?
    How much of a long term threat/liability/concern are they if they take up residence in my feed cans/coop?
    I have read that they can cause allergy problems.

    ETA: these bug are on a bag of crumble.

    I've identified them as 'Arcus siro'. Video below with a quarter for scale and I was able to get one under a microscope to further confirm ID.
    Couldn't get a pic from scope as the thing won't stop moving long enough...will keep trying tho, just out of curiosity.

    Got a bag of feed with grain mites for the second time from the same store......
    ......before they exchanged the bags (6? weeks ago) with newer bags that were clear of mites,
    tho I'm not sure he could see them and they had me bring the bags back into the store.

    Not sure if they are inside the bag or not as I haven't opened it yet, bought a bag with same date as this one a couple weeks ago that seemed clear, but now remaining 2 bags with same date were at bottom of the pallet.

    Am ticked off as I don't want to keep taking bags back and don't know how much of a 'threat' it is to just keep this bag.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
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  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Hi aart, I would be concerned about the age and storage conditions of that feed at the store. Have you contacted the feed manufacturer? A few years ago I had what could have been a feed related problem, and Purina was very helpful. If the bags are open dated, that's helpful, if not, only the manufacturer knows. I've got a dust mite allergy, so any mites aren't appreciated here! Maybe a different store? Or feed brand? Mary
     
  3. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    I'm sure you will also have to clean out your storage containers to get rid of them.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Luckily I hadn't put this bag into my containers yet, bought it yesterday and took it out of the van this morning and saw them.
    Feed was dated April 10...same as bags I bought a coupe weeks ago

    Prior instance... I had brought bag of chick chow and dog chow into house, leaning against each other, and another bag of chick chow went to can in coop.
    Had opened bag of chick chow in house and then next day noticed bugs on outside of both dog and chick chow bags. Immediately moved bags outside and checked bag in can in coop, bugs crawling all over lid of can so dragged that outside. Returned bags of chicken chow and wiped dog food bag, feed can and back of van out with bleach solution.

    I had also taken one scoop of chick chow from open bag in house and dumped into an almost empty bag of chick chow in coop, different can...which really freaked me out. I dumped that feed into a 5 gallon bucket and mixed a liberal amount of DE in with it and wiped inside of can with bleach solution also. I use bag inside cans and took all bags from cans and threw them in dumpster. Kept a close eye on feed/DE in black bucket and found no more 'moving dust' in it.

    One thing I noticed is that these bugs are easily squashed, they seem very soft bodied and fragile.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2015
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  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Decided to wipe down the outside of the bag with mild bleach water and set it on a black dog crate tray overnight see what I see.
    Wondering if bugs were/are just or mostly on outside of bag(I know, I know....weak hopes).......
    .......also set a bag of scratch from another source that was in van on another tray.
    Wiped down back of van and everything else the bag touched.

    May take bag back to store or treat feed here with DE....will let store know tho either way.

    I did get a pic thru scope, put slide directly on scope light until the heat killed it...that held it's annoying little butt still enough for it's closeup!.

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Yuck!
     
  7. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    I have not experienced those. Yish! The worst we get in our feed (besides the occasional mouse) is weevils, and I just figure they're added proteins for the chickens.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I wonder if people just don't see them?

    They are on/in a bag of crumble rather than crushed or whole grain.
     
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  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Whole pallets of Purina poultry feeds at the store absolutely covered with grain mites.
    They were aware of it......
    .....heard something about Terminex and rotating out rows of pallets each night and treating, then another row the next night....
    .......and managers trying to figure it out.....SHM, I won't be buying any feed from there for a long time if ever.

    Got my money back and another product from another store on order.....Prince brand thru my local mill.
    ......although the product I buy there was fresh and I didn't see any bugs on them....or on any bags on the horse feed nearby the poultry feeds.
     
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  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I contacted Purina with an email and they responded within a couple hours:

    "Grain mites are in all foods including human foods. When the conditions are right (heat and humidity) they hatch out and then you see what you described. This is not an excuse it’s just the facts."


    They want my address and phone number to make it an official 'complaint' and will send me some coupons for free feed.....I'll pass on that.
    I just felt compelled by conscious to report it to the manufacturer, but I'm done.
     
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