Getting rid of mites in worm culture - Shrimp & other Invertebrates - Aquatic Plant Central

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Old 11-16-2020, 06:46 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Getting rid of mites in worm culture

The mites are harmless but I can see them competing with the worms for food.
After researching on natural pesticides, I used castile soap & water to spray on the mites. I put a sample on a microscope slide. After a few hours, the sample dried up. The mites dried off and died as well.

In the culture container however (real situation), the mites survived, probably due to the humidity in the soil and container. I sprayed the mites for 5 days. The worms were alive but they moved deeper into the soil.

I then did a search on vermicultures and there is a trick to reduce the mite population. They would put pieces of melons or watermelon rinds in the culture. That would attract the mites and you can wash them off.

I had a cucumber and put in a few slices in my culture. After a day it attracted mites and unfortunately the grindal worms as well. However, the mites can fall off the cucumber by tapping the slices. This method can get tedious but can reduce the mite population without hurting the worms.
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Old 11-16-2020, 01:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting rid of mites in worm culture

fyi, if you want to use a soap spray to clean your tank and not be harmful to your critters, use a little unscented liquid castile soap and mix in water. Dr. Bronner's is a brand you can look for. I found mine in the baby soap section of the grocery store. You can also find Seventh Generation Free & Clear Liquid Hand Dish Soap if you can find it.

It's great for cleaning kittens and such as well.
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Old 11-20-2020, 09:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting rid of mites in worm culture

Interesting that since feeding the worm culture cucumbers & bananas, the mite infestation is less. I've also been throwing away top of the media where the mites hang out. Dry foods like fish food & grains seem to give mites an advantage over the worms.

I've gotten rid of mites before in worm cultures by starving them for a few weeks. The mites will migrate out of the medium looking for food. I think I'll try this again.
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