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Mite (Bird Mite) Treatment Help Needed. Crossover w/ BB Treatment?

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  1. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Thu Feb 21 2019 19:48:13
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    So let me start off by apologizing for being long-winded. You can probably read the first sentence & then skip to the end of each paragraph if you're short on time.

    Okay. So. I know what fleas (and a flea infestation) look like. Starting in October of last year, I had a flea infestation come out of nowhere in my house, right on the heels of a cricket infestation that ended when the temperatures dropped. My cats are indoor-only, so I suspect the fleas jumped in through an open window, or crawled in through a crack, or something - possibly carried by a bird or one of the many mammals that dens near the house (raccoons, opossums, skunks, you name it). I battled the infestation unsuccessfully for a couple of months, and then had a PCO come out and treat in December.

    Now, I haven't seen a single live flea since December, nor caught one in the many traps I set out, nor seen one on my cat, but I've continued getting "mystery bites" since then (under my clothing, generally on my shoulders/back/behind my ears/on my face). I get between 1-5 bites a day on a good day - on a bad day, (like a day when I'm in my car a lot), it can be up to 10. It's not bed bugs - three different PCOs have inspected my bed and our furniture without seeing so much of a hint, and I sometimes get bitten during the daytime (though activity is higher at night), throughout the entire house, and in both my car and my mom's car. My cat has also been scratching her face and ears like crazy (her poor ears are all scabbed up), but there's not a trace of a flea on her, and she's been on Comfortis flea meds for 4 months. I'm the only human affected by itchy bites - my mother (whom I live with) isn't getting bites at all that she knows of, but she also doesn't react to bug bites. She didn't get bitten by fleas either, when we still had them. However, she has been feeling crawling sensations on her legs, and sharp little "nips" (I think she called them "piks") for a couple months.

    Occam's Razor suggests mites, especially given that I've been getting bitten on my face/scalp/shoulders/back, not my legs or neck or other exposed skin like my hands, and the latest PCO to come out and inspect our house agrees. It's not scabies - I got checked out by the doctor for that months ago, and treated all of my "recent" laundry with hot washes just in case. I haven't found any live samples, nor seen any crawling around in the ceiling corners - but mites just look like dust, I don't have the greatest of vision, and our house is really damn dusty. I also don't feel anything when I get bitten - just when I start itching. None of the previous PCOs found any nests around the house, but the most recent one found a bird's nest in the bush right behind my bedroom window, so maybe the previous ones just didn't look hard enough. However, that bird nest & bush had zero visible mite activity, so if it's the source, they're pretty dispersed into the house by now. I also parked my car under a bird's nest in the driveway for a week or so, while our house was being treated for fleas in December. Also, again - we had mammals living under our deck all last summer and autumn.

    So being me, I did a lot of research on mites/bird mites over the weekend, and everything I've found on the internet has just made me panic a whole f***ton. The most recent scientific research papers seem to suggest that chicken/bird/rodent mites can parasitize humans as a host, and seems like everyone in the support groups agree, based on comments in situations that started like mine (small, annoying flea-like bites under their clothing) and ended with that exact same person literally having mites living in her scalp and skin six months later. They all say it takes at least a year to get rid of them, assuming you've caught it late or don't have an obvious source of the infestation (like me in both cases), *if* you follow their treatment suggestions.

    Suggestions for treatment on most "bird mite" websites involve ripping up the carpet in your house and your car, actually selling your car entirely and buying a Jeep or old car without carpet, throwing out all of your furniture and clothing and belongings because they're all fomites, using the hair dryer on all your bites, daily washing of the entire house in ammonia and/or alcohol, soaking all laundry overnight in baking soda + salt, bathing in sulfur, ingesting ivermectin, using neem and eucalyptus and menthol oils, etc etc etc. It's overwhelming and sometimes contradictory - but the only thing everyone agrees on is that you have to get rid of all of your clothing and furniture and carpets and car.

    So I need you all to help me from a more logical perspective. I don't have the time or money for daily top-to-bottom house cleaning. I'm in school. I'm unemployed and have no savings or money so a different car is right out - I'm borrowing from my mother for pest control treatment. This isn't my house. It's surrounded by landscaping and wildlife (there's constantly birds around in our palm/laurel/ash trees, and there's a bush right up against my bedroom walls, which is where I suspect any mites got in).

    The house is 1800 sq. ft., cabin-style, and has a high wooden roof, wood wall paneling outside and in, wall-to-wall THICK carpeting (including in the bathrooms), a great deal of heirloom upholstered furniture, the rest of our furniture is old wooden and equally valuable + irreplaceable (including our bedframes and desks), a huge valuable art collection, and a small library of books. Most of this stuff is my mom's, so I don't have the ability to just throw it out, and she's unwilling. I can't afford to replace my clothing.

    What are my best options for treatment? So far, I've been doing laundry every day (for the things that can handle it), and washing and drying everything on hot and then bagging it immediately after it comes out of the dryer, and it does not appear to have been working - I'm still getting bitten every day. Two weeks ago, when I still thought it was just sneaky invisible fleas, I treated all our floors with Onslaught + Tekko Pro (the areas I had access to around the furniture), and that did zip diddly-squat - I got bitten 3x the very next day.

    • 1. How can I treat my wood/brickwork walls?
    • 2. Do I need to get rid of our artwork and collectibles?
    • 3. Do I really need to throw my furniture & clothing out? How do I treat my furniture (upholstered especially, but also complex wooden pieces like desks and cabin beds)? Steaming didn't seem to do diddly squat, nor did spraying it with Onslaught 4-5 weeks ago, though maybe I didn't soak the upholstered furniture thoroughly enough with Onslaught.
    • 4. What do I do to treat my sports equipment and nice shoes and purses and electronics, which can't be put in the washer or the dryer?
    • 5. What are my options for treating the clothing that's too delicate to wash on hot? Does using the dryer-only work?
    • 6. What do I do about all of my books? What about my files?
    • 7-9. How can I get rid of the mites in my car (and my mom's car)???? I'm pretty sure we're passing the mites back and forth between our cars and the house at this point. I've been bitten every time I've been in my mom's car in the past 1.5 months - again, she's not bothered. I get bitten every time I drive my car, too, even if I'm wearing washed-hot-dried-hot clothing fresh out of a sealed plastic bag. We have leather seats in both cars but the rest of the car is upholstered. Also, I've previously treated the floor and driver's seatbelt of my car with Onslaught, Tekko Pro, and Precor (when I had fleas), and I had like 4 days of relief from the fleas, but now that doesn't seem to be doing anything (granted, I didn't treat the walls or the ceiling or inside the glovebox, etc etc).

    The people I've talked to who have had advanced whole-house bird mite infestations like mine say that simply washing & drying your clothing on hot doesn't work to kill the mites - that you have to do the salt+baking soda presoak, and wash & dry on hot with borax and ammonia and Bounce dryer sheets, and that still sometimes doesn't get rid of them. Also, I have a lot of clothing and other belongings that can't be washed on hot (or at all).

    So here's where I'm wondering if there's any crossover with bedbug treatment methods.

    • Would tenting the entire house with Vikane work to kill them? What about at a 10x concentration? Someone suggested the 10x concentration would work for mites. The people that I've individually talked to with bird mites said it didn't work for them, but maybe they got a bad company? How much does that concentration increase my tenting cost (I'm in southern California)?
    • If I found a PCO with a Packtite, would putting things like my electronics (laptop, desktop) and shoes and expensive leather goods into the Packtite actually kill the bird mites? Can I safely treat my electronics like that? I feel like I probably have mites inside my computer.
    • Do those Hot Shot No Pest strips work at all, like in my car?
    • Would fogging actually work in this situation?
    • Do dehumidifiers actually work? Anecdotal information I've seen is mixed.
    • And, this will likely take a while to convince my mother, but what if we moved all of our belongings to a storage unit and left them alone for 9-12 months?

    I'm willing to try packing up and moving out for a couple weeks, as a start, but I'd want to be 1000% sure that I wasn't bringing any mites or mite eggs with me in my clothing, or my electronics (which I use daily), or on me (my secret fear). And I live in an area without public transportation, so I really need to have my car and not have it be infested :\.

  2. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Thu Feb 21 2019 21:59:29
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    Hi,

    If your open to looking at this correctly I am willing to help but I don’t have the “spoons” to go through it if you want to argue every step of the way.

    I appreciate that having read some of the onsurb and rediculous biting more information online you may currently be in a heightened state of anxiety and in some many respects that is not helpful in itself.

    It’s also helpful not the channel my dear friend Occam when he would actually say the simplest hypothesis and thus the most likely is that at this stage you don’t know the cause of the issue and as such the correct path is to do nothing until you have it confirmed.

    May of the mystery biting mite issues are not that at all but because people invest so much in a ticket to ride that train they are not very willing to get off it and do their best to encourage others to ride it. It can be an expensive journey and one I can’t ethically, scientifically or morally justify and it’s rare to get all three of those to line up.

    Hope this resonates.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    If you have found this information helpful please consider leaving feedback on social media via google+ or FaceBook or by like/loving the images.

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC (legal requirements) I openly disclose my vested interest in Passive Monitors as the inventor and patent holder. Since 2009 they have become an integral part in how we resolve bed bug infestations. I also have a professional relationship with PackTite in that they distribute my product under their own branding. I do not however receive any financial remuneration for any comments I make about products.
  3. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Fri Feb 22 2019 4:50:42
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    Hi David,

    I hadn't actually ever heard of mites (aside from dust mites) until two different PCOs mentioned them to me, including the one who found the nest and suggested we have bird mites (who is coming to spray the outside of my house tomorrow).

    I am very happy to consider other options (for example, rodent mites - which would be more seasonally appropriate - or other pest), I just have no idea what those options could be, and don't know how to set up traps/detectors for a mystery pest. Bed bugs, carpet beetles, and fleas have been ruled out by PCOs, as scabies, human pediculosis, and an allergic reaction to detergent/shampoo/stress/etc have been ruled out by my doctors. I've never been allergic to dust mites, and I'm 27 years old. My skin reactions are to a bite, they're not hives or a rash. My cat's symptoms suggest it's not all in my head (I've had her for 14 years and know what her usual behaviors look like - even when we had fleas she didn't scratch her ears & face raw, just scratched her neck and groomed a lot).

    I previously have seen some sort of tiny biting midges in my car (and been bitten by them) earlier this year, but I haven't seen anything flying around the house, and it's been very cold for the past few weeks (by my thin-blooded Californian standards - meaning it's been about 5C at night and 12-16C during the day). Meanwhile, I keep waking up with bruises from trying to scratch myself in the middle of the night, and if I stop the antihistamines that I've been taking since our flea infestation, these new bites get so itchy that I scratch myself raw without noticing.

    I appreciate that you don't want to encourage anyone to spend money on treatment without knowing what you're dealing with, but no one I've spoken with has been able to suggest a "trap" that would help me capture a specimen of whatever is biting me, because with all the carpet and furniture in the house it just goes under/around whatever boards I set out. As an example of that, even when we had a full-blown flea infestation (8-15 bites a day on me, and fleas in the flea combs off the cats), I only ever caught 3-4 fleas on our sticky traps during that 3 month duration. We have some thicc carpet.

    I have good reason to believe that whatever's biting me is not permanently residing *on* me, which means whatever's biting me is environmental. With all the texture and clutter in the house, I haven't been able to figure out where any of these mystery biting nasties could be coming from. And from what individuals like bird_mite_survivor have suggested on this forum, it would probably be a fluke if I did manage to find any, since everyone in my family (except my cat) has fairly crap vision, and only the two PCOs (out of at least 20 in my area) who suggested bird mites have any familiarity with mites/little acarids as a pest in general, or have ever seen a mite outside of a magnified textbook photo.

    The only things I've managed to capture on tape are probably unrecognizable at this point, if they're anything at all. Probably just dust mites. Somewhere in size around the period in this sentence.

    Open to hearing your ideas, but I really really don't want to spread anything to my friends, and I'm really tired of being bitten in my car.

  4. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Fri Feb 22 2019 5:25:09
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    Hi,

    I do get it, my point is more accurately having worked for 16+ years in this area I am yet to find a case where evidence based work did not resolve it.

    In the cases that have been bird mites they have been found, they are actually quite large and contrasting on a white surface, in the cases where nothing but carpet beetle larval skins are found once they are resolved the issue no longer occurs. I have even seen one of the ultra rare cases of a person being parasitized by hexapods which was diagnosed because the only samples confirm-able in the home were hexapods and and by educating their GP they were able to get the correct treatment (which was not the previous 3 years of various treatments of the home).

    I can see how that image appears to be a mite but its outside of the image quality I would be comfortable calling an ID from. Do you still have the sample? It may be something that Lou can offer an opinion on or if you have the sample one of us could get a better resolution image.

    Without the ability to inspect your home I am going to have to rely on accurate data, if you contact my office and request a copy of the mystery bite pack is sent to you (copy the link to this thread in the email) and we can start looking at things.

    A few immediate things that may help:

    • By all means hot wash but don't over dry you clothes, air dry where possible
    • Consider fitting earth grounding stripes to your vehicle or have it checked for electrical grounding issues
    • Use a moisturizer in the morning and evening all over your body and particuarly in areas where skin reactions have occurred

    For an assortment of reasons I cant concur with your GP without seeing more data. I have seen too many cases where people make assumptions and end up on the wrong paths to not look at this from a fact based approach.

    With regards your concern for transmitting this to others even in the oddest of cases this is unlikely to happen, I have only seen one case where the mystery was in fact an infectious agent and that had been misdiagnosed by medical professionals and was only corrected after I insisted they sought a referral to a highly specialist medical school. I have seen far more cases where the anxiety feedback loop was manifesting in skin reactions which is why I try and balance the psychological aspect into what I do.

    The only other option which is laborious is to use sticky tape to randomly lift various surfaces in the hope of catching something and then being able to find it under a microscope. I am sure you can appreciate the time that takes which is why its best to rule everything else out first.

    Hope that makes sense.

    David

  5. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Fri Feb 22 2019 6:25:32
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    bed-bugscouk - 38 minutes ago  » 
    in the cases where nothing but carpet beetle larval skins are found once they are resolved the issue no longer occurs.

    I do want to note, given that we have an immense amount of carpet in our house, I have gone through the carpet beetle larvae-itch thing as well. For me that manifests more as a broad itchy area (almost a welt), than as discrete little bumps.

    I can see how that image appears to be a mite but its outside of the image quality I would be comfortable calling an ID from. Do you still have the sample? It may be something that Lou can offer an opinion on or if you have the sample one of us could get a better resolution image.

    I do still have the sample. Should I wait for Lou to log on? I'm in the US, so I assume it's better to send to him than you, if I'm mailing it anywhere?

    Without the ability to inspect your home I am going to have to rely on accurate data, if you contact my office and request a copy of the mystery bite pack is sent to you (copy the link to this thread in the email) and we can start looking at things.

    Thanks, I do appreciate it. Is there a charge for that, or is it an emailed information packet?

    With regards your concern for transmitting this to others even in the oddest of cases this is unlikely to happen, I have only seen one case where the mystery was in fact an infectious agent and that had been misdiagnosed by medical professionals and was only corrected after I insisted they sought a referral to a highly specialist medical school.

    My concern is less that it's a contagion (i.e. scabies), and more that any hitchhikers hanging out and wanting my blood will be passed to another person (if that person is in my car and/or we come in contact), or to a house or other building (since I'm currently in classes, and going back and forth from my car).

    The only other option which is laborious is to use sticky tape to randomly lift various surfaces in the hope of catching something and then being able to find it under a microscope. I am sure you can appreciate the time that takes which is why its best to rule everything else out first.

    Yes, that plus my relative lack of detail visual acuity would make that...extremely laborious.

    Since you're here...this lil guy is the first thing my glue traps have caught (other than my feet, or my cat's tail), since I put them down at the beginning of January. Obviously not a bed bug, and if that was biting me, I'd definitely notice it crawling on me. Is it just a really unlucky pillbug having a very bad day? I don't usually see them stretched out like that.

  6. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Sun Feb 24 2019 18:39:02
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    miteneedhelp,
    Sorry for the delay-- just rescued your post from the spam filter. Shouldn't happen to you again.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  7. bird_mite_survivor

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Mon Feb 25 2019 2:51:48
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    miteneedhelp- the description of your scenario sounds a lot like the infestation we endured. Also, the photo you posted of the specimen definitely appears to be a mite. I can't ID down to species, but if you sent an intact specimen to a university they may be able to give you an idea. I sent mine to UC Davis who narrowed it down to rodent or bird mite. Maybe you can call UC Riverside.
    Coincidentally, your cabin-style high wooden roof and carpet match the design of our home. Do you have any skylights? That was the source of our infestation... the skylight above our kitchen table. Unfortunately, the most effective treatments in our experience were also the most laborious. We vacuumed meticulously and often and purchased an expensive steamer to treat the skylight and entire high wooden ceiling. In the end, though, without a suitable host organism, the mites eventually died off (~5 months).

    Let me reiterate that in my experience, the ONLY monitor/trap that was effective at capturing mites was the DIY CO2 bed bug trap called the "Williams Method" that I discovered on YouTube. The mites are drawn to our body heat and the CO2 we expire. The mites in our infestation were falling from the ceiling onto our kitchen table and we noticed that much greater numbers would begin to fall when we approached. The traps helped us monitor the infestation and also reduced their numbers. As time passed, we would see fewer and fewer mites in the traps. Making CO2 traps took time and practice to get just right, but it was worth it.

    Traditional bed bug interceptors are not very effective for rodent/bird mites. I used many bed post interceptors and sticky traps during our infestation and caught zero mites in them. The moment I started using CO2 trap/monitors, I started catching them by the dozens. This was the ONLY trap that worked for us. Please search out the "Williams Method" bed bug trap on YouTube. We made a variation of his trap using a tall mug with vertical sides. We placed unscented talcum powder at the bottom of the mug and coated the inside walls as well. I suggest using a metal wire to support/stiffen the plastic tubing and prevent it from touching the bottom or sides of the mug so that the mites don't use it as an escape route. One of the reasons this trap is so effective, is that the mites are eventually asphyxiated by the CO2. Without the CO2, I have seen mites crawl their way all the way out of the trap. Like I mentioned before, I experimented with them and found that they can crawl across double-stick duct tape and escape from the edges of sticky traps. I'm not sure if they would be able to make their way out the the middle of a sticky trap, but they definitely can pull themselves off of the edge when they walk into one.

    Here is a useful article I found tonight for some additional reading:
    https://www.sfgate.com/homeandgarden/askthebugman/article/What-might-be-causing-cat-owners-mite-bites-3194172.php

    Survivor of a mite infestation.
    B.S. Biology & Entomology
  8. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Mon Feb 25 2019 6:35:10
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    Hi,

    Carpet beetles are not as a result of having carpets int he home and its the variability in skin reactions that tells us not to use them to diagnose based on physical appearance alone. It leads people down the wrong paths.

    Lou is NY based and I am London, it would take longer to get it to me but equally you may have a local University that could help if they have an entomology department.

    The mystery bite pack is a physical pack that is posted out, you can then fill it in and scan updates through to me via email. I will waive the fee for analysis so long as we can agree to not start to go wildly treating the place.

    Yes the woodlouse is not the culprit but given that them tend to occupy areas of damp they may be an indicator of the root cause if you see significant numbers.

    Hope that helps.

    David

  9. loubugs

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Mon Feb 25 2019 12:03:12
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    The link is:
    What might be causing cat, owners' mite bites?
    Richard Fagerlund Published 4:00 am PDT, Wednesday, March 31, 2010
    Q:We are bitten by mites every time we go out in the yard. Even our cat gets bitten when she goes outside. We called an exterminator, and he said we have rat mites and that he could treat for them. We called another pest control company to get another bid, and he said we have bird mites because I have a bird feeder out there. Can you tell me if we have rat mites or bird mites?

    ----The whole problem here that really wasn't address by the answer person is that the person with the question has said they are being bitten by mites every time they go outside. There was no basis to agree that there are mites biting the person and/or the cat. There was no specimen to examine. Fagerlund noted it could be chiggers. Again, no reason to state that chiggers are the cause of an unknown skin lesion.

    Professional entomologist/arachnologist. I consult on all matters dealing with insects and arachnids, including those of natural history and biology to pest management and forensic entomology investigations.
  10. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Mon Feb 25 2019 17:47:15
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    Hi Lou,

    There is a sample on tape where the image resolution is not quite high enough. Would you be able to have a look at it if posted.

    I agree the pattern does not seem correct for motes or many other issues. I have seen a few rare cases of photosensitive skin that appears as bites as a result of antibiotics but it is usually a summer issue rather than at this time of the year.

    David

  11. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Mon Feb 25 2019 20:51:56
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    bird_mite_survivor -
    I really appreciate all your help. I have some follow-up questions for you (regarding things like vacuums and the Williams method and flippin' skylights/clerestory windows) that I'll probably send over via PM tomorrow or Wednesday, so please don't disappear without checking back - I'm clinging to your lifeline over here, especially given the commonalities between our houses :oops:.

    David -
    I misspoke, I meant that I have had carpet beetles in my house before, and this isn't that. Plus, I think the treatments I did last year for fleas killed off any of the carpet beetles that were still around and alive.

    I can agree to not start wildly treating everything until I manage to snag a sample - but I'll probably still start vacuuming, laundering and bagging things all the same. Definitely not going to throw out my furniture or anything.

    As far as the woodlouse goes - that's actually the first time I've ever seen one, and it came from underneath my sofa, but our entire house is wood and it's been very damp lately (extremely heavy rain plus humidity plus bad ventilation from our showers that just routes the steam into the rest of the house), so that all makes sense.

    Lou -
    I have a sample of what appears to be a couple mites on some tape. Unfortunately, I don't remember where in the house I got the sample - whether it came from our sofa, or from one of the "put tape on your skin when you feel a prick" pulls. I don't think they're perfectly intact, so ID might be difficult, but if you'd be able to take a look and see if you can make anything of it, I'd appreciate that. Let me know what I'd need to do.

  12. loubugs

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    Tue Feb 26 2019 7:49:02
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    bed-bugscouk - 14 hours ago  » 
    Hi Lou,
    There is a sample on tape where the image resolution is not quite high enough. Would you be able to have a look at it if posted.
    I agree the pattern does not seem correct for motes or many other issues. I have seen a few rare cases of photosensitive skin that appears as bites as a result of antibiotics but it is usually a summer issue rather than at this time of the year.
    David

    I can take a look at an image.

  13. loubugs

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    Tue Feb 26 2019 7:50:06
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    miteneedhelp - 10 hours ago  » 
    bird_mite_survivor -
    Lou -
    I have a sample of what appears to be a couple mites on some tape. Unfortunately, I don't remember where in the house I got the sample - whether it came from our sofa, or from one of the "put tape on your skin when you feel a prick" pulls. I don't think they're perfectly intact, so ID might be difficult, but if you'd be able to take a look and see if you can make anything of it, I'd appreciate that. Let me know what I'd need to do.

    We'll try with the image as David responded above. I can try with the specimens after.

  14. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Tue Feb 26 2019 8:06:14
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    Hi Lou,

    The link is here:

    https://m.imgur.com/a/xamecLS

    David

  15. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Tue Feb 26 2019 11:51:51
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    Hi,

    Picking up on the carpet beetle comment:

    I have had carpet beetles in my house before, and this isn't that. Plus, I think the treatments I did last year for fleas killed off any of the carpet beetles that were still around and alive.

    The issue with CB's stems from the larval skins which are already dead. Simply put if you are having skin reactions due to CB's no amount of "killing" them will fix the issue because its about removing the fine hairs which have already worked free from the skin.

    Therefore it is still be correct to say CB's might be your issue and more so if the reaction is seasonal or appears to subside following spraying (it does not matter what is sprayed so long as its not deionized water).

    David

  16. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Wed Feb 27 2019 20:52:44
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    bed-bugscouk - 1 day ago  » 
    Hi,
    Picking up on the carpet beetle comment:

    I have had carpet beetles in my house before, and this isn't that. Plus, I think the treatments I did last year for fleas killed off any of the carpet beetles that were still around and alive.

    The issue with CB's stems from the larval skins which are already dead. Simply put if you are having skin reactions due to CB's no amount of "killing" them will fix the issue because its about removing the fine hairs which have already worked free from the skin.
    Therefore it is still be correct to say CB's might be your issue and more so if the reaction is seasonal or appears to subside following spraying (it does not matter what is sprayed so long as its not deionized water).
    David

    Hi David,

    Please don't read this comment as argumentative - I just want to be thorough and let you know all the details of what's going on.

    The reaction isn't seasonal - this is the first time in 20+ years in this house that I have gone through this particular issue with bites. Normally the only issue I have with carpet beetles is that they chew up my clothing (them and the moths) and leave their cast skins on the spines of my books.

    Last week, before I posted this thread, I changed sleeping locations so that I am sleeping on my couch, which is covered with a 6 mil thick plastic sheet (and has been since we had the fleas - it made the flea dirt easier to detect and clean up when my cat was lying on the couch, I didn't buy it just for this). I wipe it down with Clorox disinfecting wipes or spray down with Steri-Fab most nights before I get into bed. I've tried sleeping in various clothing items and degrees of dress, washing & drying my pajamas on hot (with a dryer sheet) & taking them out of a plastic bag right before bed, sleeping under fleece blankets or space blankets, and I'm still getting bitten on my shoulders and back (and scalp, to a lesser extent - that bite issue mostly happens when I drive my car, which is the other physical location I'm getting bitten; I'll leave my house with no bites in the evening, drive to class, and by the time I come home at the end of class, I'll have been bitten on my scalp and/or my neck and/or my shoulders and/or my arms if they're exposed).

    Also, I went outside today because we had a tree trimmer here that was going to give us a quote. I had no bites on my face when I left the house. By the time I came back inside, I had two bites on my face, and the only thing that had happened was that I walked around outside with my hood down, stood under several trees, and at one point looked up as one of the tree guys shook the trunk (and I saw some things that looked like motes of dust floating past). I don't (conclusively) know what did that, but I don't think carpet beetle larvae did.

  17. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Thu Feb 28 2019 2:02:55
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    Hi,

    Given the posting habits of others recently it’s difficult to read down and not see much of it as argumentative rather than being open to what’s actually going on.

    I was clear from the start I don’t have the spoons for that so I am out.

    David

  18. loubugs

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Thu Feb 28 2019 8:08:41
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    miteneedhelp: remember that "bites" aren't always bites.

  19. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Fri Mar 1 2019 17:00:44
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    loubugs - 1 day ago  » 
    miteneedhelp: remember that "bites" aren't always bites.

    Hi Lou,

    Sorry, yes, I'm aware of that. I just don't know how else to describe whatever-it-is, the small isolated red bumps that sometimes have a puncture-looking mark in the center. It's not acne, and my GP seemed to believe they were insect bites, so that's how I've been referring to them.

    Were you able to take a look at the photos I uploaded? They seem like some sort of mite, and I don't know whether at 60x magnification I'm looking at a dust mite or something larger that's worth bringing to my local extension office :(.

    Link here: https://m.imgur.com/a/xamecLS

    I'm still hoping it's something else - but what I thought I was doing with David was working through a process of elimination; I was hoping that I'd been thorough enough in all my attempts to address it that he could either point out something I'd missed (that could mean it was carpet beetles), or agree with me that it was more likely to be some other cause, based on all my methods to ameliorate the situation.

    It seems that comes across as argumentative, when you combine it with an edge of frustration, and I'm sorry for that, it really wasn't my intent. I've just had rashes from the carpet beetle larvae before, and what's happening to me now isn't at all like that, especially given that it's happening in places like the car, and with garments that would never have come in contact with the larvae (like new clothing, fresh out of the bag from Target). But if there's some way to figure out whether it is carpet beetles, or rule it out, I'd really like to do that.

  20. loubugs

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    Posted 2 weeks ago
    Sat Mar 2 2019 5:42:02
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    The pictures have much glare. Why is that?

  21. miteneedhelp

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    Posted 1 week ago
    Mon Mar 4 2019 20:30:06
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    It's illumination from the microscope I'm using, combined with trying to take the photo through my phone's camera (which doesn't want to line up properly to the microscope lens), plus the samples are "encased" in satin scotch tape, which is clear but a little shiny.


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