Yeck. Grain mites!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by TheWolfRaven, Mar 22, 2015.

  1. TheWolfRaven

    TheWolfRaven In the Brooder

    Feb 11, 2015
    I was stupid enough to use oats that I hadn't yet left in the freezer for a couple days. Three weeks on when my mealies are thriving and coming into feeding sizes i found a (small) infestation of grain mites! Had to chuck every thing away... The beetles, the pupa, the worms... All of it! That's the last time I ever do that....

    Well, I was also stupid enough to keep my tubs in the house. In the living room to be exact, under a table. Now, the problem is I have a terrarium on the table. For a python. Only a little baby snake who seems clean of mites, but no matter how many time I wipe away (what I think is all the mites) I'll come back in an hour and BOOM. Cage is covered in mites.

    I know this isn't a snake forum, but do you reckon they'd hurt the little guy? I haven't seen any inside yet, but since it is a wire-mesh lid I'm sure they can get in. Luckily the snake sits on his hot spot (30+ degrees) and his colder spot is probably 20-25 (or whatever the room temp is)

    Now! The main question; any tips on getting rid of these annoying buggers? Wiping away with a wet cloth hasn't done much good... Well, the population has gone down considerably (most still being around the oat bran) but I still find a few dozen crawling around who seem to be replaced the second they're killed of *sigh*

    That sure taught me. Half a kilo of my precious mealworms in the bin. Literally. Poor chickies will have to go a few days without any mealworms.

    Would giving the entire terrarium a rinse do the trick? Might do the table when I'm at it, can't risk another infestation (well, I'm not having them inside ever again...

    They were only moved inside cause the rats kept knocking the lid off, the the sliders would come down and have a snack. Everyone love the mealies. Better find a safer hiding spot. Or you know, a safe...

    Any tips would be appreciated
  2. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

    May 6, 2010
    My Coop
    Grain mites sure can be a pain to deal with, but I don't think they'll be harmful to your snake. The best way to deal with grain mites is to control the humidity. They can't reproduce at humidities lower than about 60% or so. Of course, if you live in a humid climate, that can be difficult. Here is a nice page on controlling grain mites.
  3. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    I've been there. I sympathize! In trying to identify what was infesting my worm trays, I snorted some of them up my nose! If they didn't hurt me, they won't hurt your snake. Itched like nobody's business, tho.

    Too bad you tossed all the works. Mites are harmless. All you need to do is leave the cover off the trays and let the substrate dry out. That kills the mites.

    I found freezing often doesn't get all the mites in grain. I oven heat mine at 350 for fifteen minutes, then cool in the cooling oven.

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