Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Rodent Mites

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Question
QUESTION: Hi,
I asked a question some time ago regarding rodent mites.
How can i tell if i have them, can i make a homemade sticky trap to see if my bed or carpet may be harbouring them and if so where is the best place to put it? I saw a mite crawling up a wall next to a chair i frequently sit in, it was reddish/brown and moved quite slowly.I tried to attach it to tape but it got crushed easily so when i went to use my magnifier i couldn't make out it's anatomy. I still occasionally feel pin prick bites on my legs.
Thank you.

ANSWER: Lisa,

There are no traps for these mites but if you see one use a cotton swab (Q-tip) dampened with alcohol to catch it. Place the specimen in a small vial of rubbing alcohol. There's an insect/mite identification service at the Natural History Museum in London that should be able to help id it. Also, see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/bird_mites.html for a photo of these mites.

Jack DeAngelis


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you for your rapid response. In your opinion would I see a lone rodent mite wandering a cold wall? Is it more likely to be a harmless spider mite instead? We are having a lot of rain recently here.

Answer
Unlikely that you'd find a spider mite other than clover mite, see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/clover_mite.html, climbing on a vertical wall. Clover mites have very long front longs (see page cited above) so should be fairly easy to id.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis

Expertise

I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.

Experience

20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

Publications
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Entomology

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