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Old 07-10-18, 09:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

So on April 15 after years of research I got my first snake, Mittens, a month old pastel morph BCI at Repticon. 2 months later, I find he has mites. I know I should have treated him as soon as I brought him home, that was my newb mistake. For some reason I thought a certified breeder wouldnít sell me a snake with mites. Stupid, but I know better now. I researched the best way to deal with them in bioactive vivs, and ordered a liter of hypoapsis miles mites (about 25,000). From what I hear, if done right, these will make your viv mite free in a few weeks. They arrived June 6 and I began to add them in. It seemed to work, a fee weeks went by, no more mites in the water dish or on him, but last week the mites showed up in his water dish again. So I ordered another batch. They arrived yesterday. Now here is where I am unsure of what to do next, as I've heard various opinions. Should I just dump the whole thing in or add a little bit each day? Last time I added about a half cup to a cup a day. I have a 55 gallon bioactive terrarium with an 80 degree ambient temp, I use a mist king to mist it 4 times a day for a minute. Despite the mites, his temperament is great and he eats regularly. Does anyone have experience with this? Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 07-11-18, 04:41 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

I am very surprised that the mites came back. Is there any chance that you somehow reintroduced the mites to the enclosure with a utensil, hide or adding something to your enclosure that had been exposed to snake mites? One thing to keep in mind is that the predatory mites will die in a couple of weeks if they do not eat. I would add half of the predatory mites in immediately and the remainder of them in about a week. Best of luck and keep us posted.
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Old 07-11-18, 07:19 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

Ok, I will try that, thanks. I don't think I could have reintroduced the snake mites as I wipe down all utensils with a listerine/water mix. I think it's more likely that I killed the predator mites somehow, unfortunately, either from storing them for too long (last time I slowly introduced them over a week) or something else. Maybe it wasn't humid enough for them, my viv is a screen top, so this week I'm going to buy a glass canopy (to hopefully increase humidity retention) and some sheet moss at the pet store as the sticky topic here mentioned putting them under some moss. Btw, I am storing their container in a small (1 ft by 8in, roughly) cooler with a small ice pack and the cooler lid slightly open, temp in my house is 78 degrees. Hopefully I didn't freeze them to death. Also, when I bought them the first time (from the BioControl Network) the man I talked to did say maybe just maybe I might want to buy 2 liters since my terrarium is kind of large. So maybe I simply didn't get enough? I don't know, hopefully they wipe them out this time.
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Old 07-12-18, 01:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

Predator mites are usually shipped with a limited amount of food, meaning prey. It is my understanding that when they finish eating that they will start eating each other. I could be wrong, but I don't think saving some for later is a viable approach.
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Old 07-12-18, 09:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

hard to say, obviously some avoided the predatory mites and outlasted them. Hopefully take 2 will be successful. Are they definitely snake mites? What color are the mites?
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Old 07-12-18, 11:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

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Originally Posted by pet_snake_78 View Post
hard to say, obviously some avoided the predatory mites and outlasted them. Hopefully take 2 will be successful. Are they definitely snake mites? What color are the mites?
They are black. Iím pretty sure they are snake mites as he was soaking in his water bowl a lot and they were in it after that. Here is a pic, sorry itís not super clear.
Anyhow, the predator mites this time seem a lot more active than the last batch for some reason, and this time I will be more generous about releasing them. Hopefully this will do it.
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Old 07-13-18, 03:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

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Originally Posted by Jim Smith View Post
I am very surprised that the mites came back. Is there any chance that you somehow reintroduced the mites to the enclosure with a utensil, hide or adding something to your enclosure that had been exposed to snake mites? One thing to keep in mind is that the predatory mites will die in a couple of weeks if they do not eat. I would add half of the predatory mites in immediately and the remainder of them in about a week. Best of luck and keep us posted.
One thing hit me just now...there are quite a few branches for climbing in my viv, and my snake loves to climb and sleep in branches. Could it be that hypoapsis donít like to climb (I read they like soil), and he spends too much time in the branches for them to be effective? Maybe I should take all climbsble stuff out.
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Old 07-14-18, 09:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

That is very weird, from what I know the predatory mites hunt the other mites until they are all gone and then go after each other. It's very strange that the other mites outlasted them.
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Old 07-15-18, 06:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

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That is very weird, from what I know the predatory mites hunt the other mites until they are all gone and then go after each other. It's very strange that the other mites outlasted them.
Yeah, itís weird and it gets weirder. I introduced another liter of the predator mites this last Tuesday. They seemed a lot more active than the last batch, which seemed promising. So I checked my snake this morning and there were a bunch of snake mites hiding under his belly scales. I saw the predator mites CRAWLING ON THE SNAKE two days ago, and yet there are snake mites on the snake. I am at a loss, tearing my hair out over this. Either Iíve done something wrong, or discovered a new strain of snake mites that has developed resistance to hypoapsis miles. I bought them from The biocontrol network which was the seller many on this site suggested, so I know they are legit, I also know they are alive as I have seen them, but for whatever reason they are not eating the bad mites.
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Old 07-15-18, 07:24 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

Did you put the entire container of hypoapsis mites in cage? Give them some more time. It usually takes about two weeks for them to clean out all the snake mites. If your hypoapsis mites are eating well, they will also breed to produce new babies. The great thing about the hypoapsis mites is that the also eat the eggs of the snake mites. Good luck.
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Old 07-15-18, 07:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

OK, so I didn't mention this in my last reply, but I used the Biconet mites as well and my snake's mites seem to have returned. Have only seen a couple, but presume if I've seen any there are likely many more. Have been laying the blame on me. The shipping was 2-day, not overnight so the arrive alive wasn't guaranteed. I used 1/2 the liter at first & then about 5 days later used the rest as I was worried I'd not put enough in there & because I figured they were be eating each other by then. I put the contents of the bottle on a paper plate in the enclosure.



Basically, I figured I had used the mites in a far less than optimum manner. My snake's enclosure is not bioactive. The only living thing in there is my snake... and his unwanted visitors. So did I do it wrong or are the mites the wrong kind or is there some problem with Biconet?
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Old 07-23-18, 11:32 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Question about using predatory mites against snake mites

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Originally Posted by Jim Smith View Post
Did you put the entire container of hypoapsis mites in cage? Give them some more time. It usually takes about two weeks for them to clean out all the snake mites. If your hypoapsis mites are eating well, they will also breed to produce new babies. The great thing about the hypoapsis mites is that the also eat the eggs of the snake mites. Good luck.
Yep, I put the entire container in.
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Originally Posted by kudzu View Post
OK, so I didn't mention this in my last reply, but I used the Biconet mites as well and my snake's mites seem to have returned. Have only seen a couple, but presume if I've seen any there are likely many more. Have been laying the blame on me. The shipping was 2-day, not overnight so the arrive alive wasn't guaranteed. I used 1/2 the liter at first & then about 5 days later used the rest as I was worried I'd not put enough in there & because I figured they were be eating each other by then. I put the contents of the bottle on a paper plate in the enclosure.



Basically, I figured I had used the mites in a far less than optimum manner. My snake's enclosure is not bioactive. The only living thing in there is my snake... and his unwanted visitors. So did I do it wrong or are the mites the wrong kind or is there some problem with Biconet?
It's weird that we both had problems from the same seller. Did you ever finally get rid of the mites? I'm giving it a couple weeks like Jim Smith suggested, but if that doesn't cut it then I'm going to treat my snake the traditional way (Natural Chemistry spray) and quarantine him in a rubber maid type container for three months. In the meantime, I will keep sustaining my bioactive enclosure, hopefully after 3 months the snake mites will starve out without a host, I've heard their life span is 19 days.
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