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My First Experience with Mites.

Discussion in 'Carpet/Diamond Pythons' started by Dragoness, Jun 29, 2010.

  1. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    As most of you guys know, I recently (last month) bought a new carpet python. When I examined him at the show (and every time I cleaned his cage for the next few weeks) I saw no mites, nor evidence thereof. He has been living in a plastic container with vent holes drilled in the top, a water bowl, and paper towels so I can keep an eye on him. he also has a log hide and one branch that were scrubbed with bleach and hot water prior to being placed in his cage.

    I have seen no mites on him, nor on the paper towels when I change them.

    About a week ago, I noticed he was hanging out in his water dish. I boosted his humidity, and checked him again (still nothing) then I went out of state for the weekend, and my pet-sitter called to give me updates (he was still in his dish) and when I returned, he was still in his dish. Getting worried, I changed his paper towels, yet again, and examined them for mites (still nothing).

    Just today, I went to change his water (he was laying in it) and saw drowned mites in his water dish - about 6 of them. I found only one live one on him. I checked his nose, pits, and eyes, and found none there.

    Took out his props, and they are currently soaking in hot water with a good strong dose of bleach. Tonight, they will also be baked for a while. I have since rubbed him down with Natural Chemistry Reptile relief, bleached and scrubbed his plastic container, wiped them also with the mite killer. misted his paper towels with the mite killer, and switched him to a larger water dish (so he can fit all of himself in it to help clear them off.)

    He wasn't acting mite-infested when I got him, and since there were very few (thanks to him still being in QT, with regular cleaning and observations) I think I caught it early. Even though his cage is at the top of a shelf that is shared only with insects, I'm still paranoid. Soon as I'm done with this post, I'll be checking every other snakes water dishes and bodies for mites, and watching them in a paranoid manner for weeks - even though I just changed all water dishes yesterday when I got home, and peeked in on all my snakes. Nobody else is acting like they might have mites.

    I'm probably going to bleach all my spare props again. They get scrubbed with bleach before and after every use, and at intervals while in use, but now I'm paranoid I may have missed a spot or something.

    I'll be rotating the carpet python in and out of my spare ten gallon. It's currently soaking with bleach too. Tomorrow, I'll rinse, dry, and put him in there with fresh towels, fresh water, and bleach soak his plastic cage, repeat for about a week.

    Just what I wanted to come home to! lol.
     
  2. mld

    mld Subscribed User Premium Member

    That sucks! That sounds like so much work to come home to. He must be pretty smart to soak in a water dish, I'm sure it help give him some sort of relief. It must be that time of year that they start to multiply. Hope he gets rid of the little critters soon. Good luck and don't worry too much.
     
  3. Og_

    Og_ Elite Member

    I'm not sure how good the mite treatment is that they sell at pet stores. It is a pesticide that has to be used carefully. I used it once a few years ago and it worked, But I was also nervous about using it.
    Something has to be done about the mites that are still embedded between the scales. They are there. It's sort of like seeing 5 cockroaches in your house. There has to be more.
     
  4. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Og_, I am hoping that rubbing him down with the mite killer will help with a lot - he also has a very large water dish to help suffocate them out, and his paper towels are laced with the stuff as well. His cage will be cleaned/bleached daily until they are gone (I will win!)

    Despite the irritation factor of finding mites in my home, I have had so much other good news lately, that this just isn't enough to get me down, lol.
     
  5. TheRoachRanch

    TheRoachRanch Elite Member

    The ONLY thing that I've found to work and totally rid mites is PAM Provent A Mite. Some people use Equate that you can buy in Walmart. Also use preventative measures like quarantining new animals for a month or two, washing hands between handling different animals or cleaning them for that measure. Switched to PAM about 5 years ago and haven't seen a mite since. All the professional breeders and high end collectors swear by it.

    Good Luck!

    -Ian
     
  6. ChrisS

    ChrisS Elite Member

    Mite eggs can take a month or longer to hatch. I would also recommend prevent a mite but if you use it be extremely careful. It must be used in a well ventilated area. If not it can cause kidney failure. But it works really well.
     
  7. Lucysfriend

    Lucysfriend Elite Member

    I hate those darn things! I got them when I got my BTS. I had to do the cage clean down every three days and those BTS scales really hide the mites! Good luck, and I will have to look for your good news,lol.
     
  8. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    I'm cleaning/bleaching the cage daily (I have two, so he can switch back and forth) and doing the mite spray every 3rd day.

    The stuff I have I already had on hand, and I have used it to keep other invertebrates out of cages (works on ants too)
     
  9. missabrat

    missabrat Elite Member

    I so feel your pain. Mites are a pain in the neck ! Luckily{I hope} you found it early! Try having to do this with 45 + reptiles UGH not fun at the rescue!!
     
  10. savkratos

    savkratos Member

    wow, all that talking about mites has really put me on the edge of my chair!!!! seriously just reading about it makes me want to be paranoid and check out my guys!!!
     
  11. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    I think I may have nipped it early enough - I have been paranoid, checked all my other snakes. Nothing so far (and nobody acting infested.) Even my opaque rainbow boa isn't laying in her water dish (she doesn't usually...) I'm half tempted to start applying the mite spray to the floors of the other cages, just to be safe.
     
  12. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    well, today I went to check on him, and change his cage, and for the first time in a while, he was NOT laying in his water dish. He was also opaque today (just starting to get a little cloudy in the eyes.)

    Will shedding help remove some of the mites? I am keeping his paper towels laced with the mite stuff, and changing them daily. Cages getting bleached daily. Snake is getting sprayed every 3 days as directed.
     
  13. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Would you believe, I was in Walmart today, and thought I would pick up the bedding spray, just in case, and they didn't have it. I had some other running to do in the next town over, and stopped in the walmart there too - no luck.

    To top if off, I cannot find just the spray - I have to buy a $14 kit to get the spray (which also comes with shampoo and some other stuff I don't need.) Cheaper to buy RID at this point.

    Another walmart fail.

    Carpet python is going on 3 days now without laying in his water dish, he is opaque, and he did eat last night.
     
  14. hennisntacanibal

    hennisntacanibal Elite Member

    Good to hear that progress is being made. Luck!
     
  15. AnolesJTO

    AnolesJTO Elite Member

    That's very good .. Glad to hear he is eating, shedding, and getting out of the water dish! Now I feel like I'm gonna have to check my anoles every single minute to see if there are red things crawling around .. and in the water.
     
  16. Og_

    Og_ Elite Member

    Mites live off of blood. So any shed should be removed immediately for they will quickly move off of the shed and into the substrate and then back onto the snake.

    If your snake is shedding in pieces rather than one long single piece, It will make it even more difficult to get rid of mites.

    Also, The areas between the scales can have small air pockets while the snake is soaking in water. That's another reason why it can be a pain in the butt to get rid of these little buggers!
     
  17. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Yeah, he shed in pieces, (which I expected) but it did all come off. I have been wiping him down with the mite spray every few days, and making sure his paper towels get spritzed with it when I change them. Treated all my snakes, and started treating all the enclosure carpets just to be safe. Every time I replace one, it gets a spritz with the mite killer. Removed substrates.

    Blah. It has been a week, I tell you.
     
  18. mld

    mld Subscribed User Premium Member

    Your hard work will pay off!
     
  19. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    It had better - I refuse to acknowledge an alternative!
     
  20. Og_

    Og_ Elite Member

    One thing that I have used to help shedding is that I add one or two drops of wheat germ oil to the fur of the feeder rodents.
    I had one that was shedding in pieces but stopped after I started doing this.
    You will need to feed in a seperate clean container for the oil will collect debris if fed in his living quarters.
     

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