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Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic since 2005; Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic Discussion Forum.

My battle in the year of Corona

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Tabitha111 View Drop Down
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    Posted: August 15 2020 at 6:32pm

Have not been on for awhile. Come to find out my home is infested with bird mites (I hear this is common in Australia also) in the course of about three weeks I've had the exterminator in, removed every single item I own. Pulled up all carpeting. Fogged my car. Live out of two plastic bins with clothes, towels, bed items. Sleep on a blow up mattress. It's laundry, cleaning, bathing that's my whole day. Barely eat one meal a day. Selling condo, moving up to Boston area close to sister is the latest plan. Taking it day by day. Have had so many workers in here, thankfully one gave me a brand new n95 since my supply is deleted. I only feel safe with those. Catching up.with everyone. Hope all is well in your part of the world. Please no bird mite horror stories. Only success if you know of any. It's traumatic and a nightmare.

'A man who does not think and plan long ahead will find trouble right at his door.'
--Confucius

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Dutch Josh View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 15 2020 at 11:45pm

Tabitha111-you must still be in some sort of shock-take time to "recover and reflect"/heal. Good luck in Boston !

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
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Technophobe View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 16 2020 at 5:04am

Oh dear!  I have a foolproof way of getting rid of bird mites.  No chemicals!  Sick birds will even treat themselves.

Diatomaceous earth.  It is a fine powder composed of dried, sort-of-fossilised diatoms.  They have very hard cell walls in the dried state of the earth.  To us, with skin, it is a gentle dry cleanser.  To any life using a chitinous exoskeleton (insects, arachnids etc.) it is abrasive death.  It grinds their armour away and clogs their spiracles (how they breathe).  The faster they move, the faster they die.

Dry shampoo, and dusting of skin is all it needs to work.  Birds will dust-bathe themselves; apparently with great pleasure.  Our clothing, bedding etc. can be dusted and the earth simply shaken out along with any dead mites.  A clean cat-litter tray with diatomaceous earth and a few catnip leaves will treat pet cats and a dusting whilst grooming will do the dogs.  Birds are just given a dust bath.  You can even dilute it up to 10 - 1 with other, cheaper fine grit without losing effectiveness.

I keep pounds of it in my survival preps!  It is so utterly complete in its kill range and so safe to us.  You can even eat the stuff safely, birds often do, as it removes internal parasites as well!

One of the benefits of keeping chickens is you learn this stuff.  Our chickens had mites a few years ago when a new chicken was introduced.  The mites swarmed over cages, nest boxes, hutches and the poor chickens.  We could not get rid of them!  No chemical worked.  Cages vacant for years still had an infestation; - just waiting for its next meal.  They swarmed toward any warm-blooded creatures unlucky enough to come in range. We were contemplating complete culling of all chickens and burning their cages.  Then I bought a tiny pot of the earth in a big pet shop.  I had little hope of it working, as I had almost given up, but tried it anyway - one last  'Hail Mary' pass.   One dose of the earth and they were gone forever.  

Ebay sells it in kilo bags.

On a lighter note.  Bird mite diet is species specific.  Every one that bit you was poisoned - fatally!   

ERCD
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WitchMisspelled View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WitchMisspelled Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 16 2020 at 7:06am

I'm a city dweller and I keep a jug of diamotaceous earth in my preps pantry.  I had an ant problem many years ago and I didn't know if it was the dreaded pharaoh ant or run of the mill brown ant.  A friend  recommended I try it and it took care of the problem within days. It's also good for any other kind of bug infestation including fleas, bed bugs, cockroaches and stink bugs. As I said, I'm a city dweller and I haven't seen a roach in my apartment in 25 years since I started using this stuff. Its so safe this same friend worms her animals with it, even kittens (she's an animal rescuer to boot). It also rids humans of parasites.

Two things:

There's two kinds:  Food grade and not food grade.  Get the food grade.  

Do not breath this stuff in though, that can be dangerous.   If you choose to use it, wear a dust mask and apply it with a bulb syringe to the desired areas.  

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Tabitha111 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tabitha111 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 16 2020 at 8:09pm

Thank you both. I've read about DE but how do you get it up? I've heard its messy and will ruin a vacuum cleaner. What about Borax or Boric Acid?

'A man who does not think and plan long ahead will find trouble right at his door.'
--Confucius

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WitchMisspelled Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2020 at 4:18am

I haven't ruined a vacuum cleaner yet.  But I have a hepa filter vacuum where you change the filters regularly.  I imagine the time-frame for changing the filter is before the diatoms can damage it's effectiveness. Other than that, the idea is to have a bit down all the time to keep critters at bay.   But from experience, it sweeps up easily with other household dust on bare floors and wipes out of cabinets easily with a damp sponge. 

It's like a powder.  Hence, my recommendation to use a bulb syringe to apply it to things like baseboards. You don't need a pile of the stuff. A light dusting will do.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2020 at 4:26am

I get mine from Ebay.  But I can't find a supplier outside the UK on the site.  This may be because I am in the UK myself.  

This listing is in Yorkshire, but they get their supplies from Peru first.:  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/3KG-BUCKET-DIATOMACEOUS-EARTH-PURE-PERUVIAN-FOOD-GRADE/181160194312?hash=item2a2dfd3108:g:UVsAAOSwxcZc-Qnk so there must be some in the Americas.

I presume Amazon will have it too.



No, borax will not work.  I do not know of any alternatives except possibly insect chalk (from China) which i think is just DE compressed into sticks.  I have not tried it and can't find any on ebay at present.  Diatomaceous earth does not work by chemical means.  It literally rubs their chitin off and cloggs up their breathing systems.  Which is why it is so wide in its range and so safe to us.  Other chemicals would just disolve away.



I have not found any difficulty using it with a vaccuum cleaner but I have always removed it dry.  I would presume it turns to mud when wet.  That is what it is after all.  It is a very SPECIALIST mud, but mud none the less.

ERCD
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WitchMisspelled Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2020 at 6:45am

Actually it can turn to mud, but generally breaks apart because the diatoms are all different shapes.  My cousin uses it in her pool in lieu of chlorine.  

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