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starflyre

Mites on Hissers

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My Hisser colony came with mite and I was wondering what is the safest way to get rid of them. They are light in color and visible to the naked eye. I have the Hissers on Vermiculite because i read it was safe and free from parasites but the roaches themselves ha these to start. thanks for your help,

starflyre

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My Hisser colony came with mite and I was wondering what is the safest way to get rid of them. They are light in color and visible to the naked eye. I have the Hissers on Vermiculite because i read it was safe and free from parasites but the roaches themselves ha these to start. thanks for your help,

starflyre

I don't know how feasible it is for you, but I use the "shake and bake" method. I put a small amount of flour in gallon plastic bag and the roaches I need to de-mite then shake them gentle, take them out of the bag and brush them off. I would suggest using the canned air though that would probably be faster and easier then brushing. Also, I see that someone else reccommended the air as a mite removing solution. I only had 4-5 hissers when I started doing this. The mites actually stick in the flour and fall off the hissers. It does not seem to hurt the hissers at all except the brushing which is why air is probably better. My hissers did usually end up having a little flour stuck on them after brushing. The method actually says to mist them off. I haven't been brave enough to do this yet.

Godd luck,

Tina :D

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First, the large mites naturally occur on the different hissers such as Gromphadorhina and Elliptorhina and many enthusiasts think they are good to have because they are natural. However, others prefer to get rid of them. If you have a large colony it's really difficult because removal involves finding and removing every mite. This takes at least a few close inspections. The mites can swept up with a tiny keyboard sweeper and picked off by hand and smashed. A rubbing alcohol soaked cotton swab is sometimes suggested but probably would't bother these large mites and could hurt the hisser, especially near the spiracles.

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Interesting factiod:

"Androlaelaps schaeferi (formerly known as Gromphadorholaelaps schaeferi) is a mite that lives on the Madagascar hissing cockroach (Gromphadorhina portentosa). While it was formerly believed that it sucks body fluid from its host, coloring experiments have shown that this is not the case. Instead, it takes part in its host's meal. They are usually concentrated between the host's legs and around the spiracles."

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That was interesting, Matt, didn't know that. Thanks for sharing!

I do believe that even "harmless" mites can pose a threat to a cockroach, including the G. portentosa.

I think it's the same as with millipedes, that if the number of mites increases substantially, they can eventually get too many and block the spiracles and cause stress to the host.

Best wishes

Fredrik

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"Androlaelaps schaeferi (formerly known as Gromphadorholaelaps schaeferi) is a mite that lives on the Madagascar hissing cockroach (Gromphadorhina portentosa).

This mite species also lives on other Gromphadorhina, Elliptorhina laevigata (possibly any Elliptorhina) and all of the so-called "princisia".

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The first hissers I ever got had these mites on them. The mite population got out of control when I raised the humidity in the tank. There were so many on my hissers that it just didn't look healthy.

I used the "shake and bake" method too. It works great. I would suggest using calcium powder instead of flour though. Usually a little bit remains on them even if you brush it off. The calcium powder won't get stuck to them like flour will if they get wet after.

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That was interesting, Matt, didn't know that. Thanks for sharing!

Me too!

if the number of mites increases substantially, they can eventually get too many and block the spiracles and cause stress to the host.

Also, they can kill the roaches, I had bad experiences with them :angry: .

Best regards,

Javier.

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