Mite ID/Help? (killing plant. or feeding off decay?) - Dendroboard

Go Back   Dendroboard > Vivariums > Plants
Register Blogs FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read Advertise

Support Our Sponsors
No Threads to Display.


Like Tree1Likes
  • 1 Post By Socratic Monologue

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 08-07-2019, 03:18 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 9
Thanks: 1
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Mite ID/Help? (killing plant. or feeding off decay?)
^video of them in action

I've had some issues with plant death in my (non-frogged, yet) vivarium and noticed some mites on the glass, didn't think much of it based on the (many) threads I've looked at on the topic... but then I saw these guys that seem to be building up on what looks like is becoming my latest plant casualty and I'm at a loss. What are these? Are they hurting my plant, or just eating what's dying from another cause?

I'm wondering if I should just pull up this plant, though I doubt that would fix the problem... I'm seeing other, smaller mites in the background of the video now too... what a pain. (Thanks, iPhone X camera!)

This vivarium is very high humidity all the time (many gaps sealed- is for thumbnails) and seeded with isopods and springtails - I see springtails in here all the time. I bleach solution-soaked the plants and baked the cork bark... and read a bunch of threads here already and I'm still stumped!
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 08-07-2019, 05:26 AM
DPfarr's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 369
Thanks: 0
Thanked 22 Times in 21 Posts

How are your plants dying? Honestly I’m more familiar with mites that damage foliage. Such as spider mites that stipple leaves and create unsaleable plants. That type of mite is normally mitigated by humidity, so spider mites are unlikely your pest.

I doubt that a mite is killing your plants. It’s possible they could be a vector for disease or something but it’s more likely the case any pathogen is already present.
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 08-07-2019, 03:23 PM
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Berkeley CA
Posts: 744
Thanks: 4
Thanked 113 Times in 105 Posts
Default Re: Mite ID/Help? (killing plant. or feeding off decay?)


I agree with DPfarr, these mites are not likely to be the cause of your pant issues - they are merely attrracted to your dying/decaying plants as a food source.

Tell us about your substrate mix and the recent history of this viv.
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 08-08-2019, 03:43 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 9
Thanks: 1
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: Mite ID/Help? (resolved- mold mites)

Hello all,
Thank you for your responses!
You were right, something else is contributing to the plant's downfall- I consulted with an entomologist friend of mine and she identified them as mold mites, so they eat the decaying plants but don't seem to bother the living. My springtails seem to be doing fine too, though, so these mites will just be a another snack for my eventual thumbnails! In the meantime, I'm swabbing out any visible clusters of them+eggs just to keep their numbers a little lower for the sake of the bugs I put in there on purpose.

As for the plants, I think I'm just new to plant keeping and am overwatering them or something, or they were overstressed during shipping. The vivarium is a Josh's Frogs bioactive kit - hydroton under ABG under sphagnum moss under leaf litter. It's only a few weeks old, so I'm still pretty much helicopter-parenting it, lol.

Thank you again! I hope this thread can folks with a similar problem in the future, too.
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 08-08-2019, 03:58 AM
Socratic Monologue's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Central WI
Posts: 1,156
Thanks: 51
Thanked 137 Times in 132 Posts
Default Re: Mite ID/Help? (resolved- mold mites)

I suspect many here would recommend ditching the sphagnum layer. I don't see a purpose for it in the viv, and I find it to be a challenging material to maintain a middling amount of water in -- it is too often saturated, or dry.
Kinstrome likes this.
I think I could turn and live with animals, they are so placid and self-contain'd.

- Whitman
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Socratic Monologue For This Useful Post:
Elisabluh (08-08-2019)

mites, plants, vivarium

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT. The time now is 09:32 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.