Facts About Clover Mites
The clover mite, which looks like a tiny red spider, is a common pest along the East Coast of the United States. Their name comes from their love of the clover and grasses from which they feed, as well as their distinct red color. Although they may invade homes, they are plant feeders, and will not cause any harm beyond some possible minor skin irritation.
Clover Mite Bites
Clover mites only feed on plants and will not harm people or pets or get into household products. Once they are inside a building, they quickly die. Clover mites do not bite people, but can sometimes cause minor skin irritation in those who are allergic.
Clover Mite Infestation
Clover mite eggs and young are also a bright red. They develop from unfertilized eggs, meaning no male partner is necessary for reproduction.Females will lay eggs individually or in groups in foundations, between walls, under tree bark or other places where the young will be protected. These eggs develop during hot summers and will hatch in the fall when the temperature dips below 85 degrees. The new mites will rest for 4 to 12 days, reaching full maturity after one month. Clover mites may produce two new generations over the course of year, and they may live 1 to 7 months if the environment is right. While most mites are dormant, as eggs, in the winter, but it is possible for clover mites to develop during colder months and hatch in the early spring.
Types of Clover Mites
Clover Mite Identification
Although clover mites are tiny, they are one of the larger mites that infest plants. These creatures look like tiny red spiders and are about 1/30 of an inch long, which is smaller than a pinhead. They range in color from reddish-brown to orange, or even sometimes green-brown after they feed. Clover mites have oval-shaped bodies with eight legs, the front pair being very long. These front legs are commonly mistaken to be antennae or feelers. When they crawl, clover mites are slow-moving and will be attracted to the warmest areas of a structure. You’ll normally see these mites as small, moving dots across surfaces. Many people confuse them as tiny red spiders. These creatures, although related, are not spider. If a clover mite is crushed, it will leave behind a red stain. This is not blood, but the mite’s pigments.
Clover Mites in the Home
These mites are often found in homes from November through June, and once again in the fall. They prefer temperatures ranging from 50 to 75 degrees, and will begin to emerge as their environment warms. In the summer, they will be found in homes if the plants that host them die. These plants include grasses, clover, dandelions, and irises. During the fall, mites will gather near vegetation or foundation walls, preparing for the cold weather.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you control a clover mite infestation?
While clover mites are not harmful to humans, they are a nuisance. They can appear in large numbers, making them less than welcome. Many people are concerned because they think their home is being overrun by tiny red spiders. The mites come out of nowhere, and disappear just as quickly. To remove any visible clover mites, wipe them away with a soapy rag or sponge. However, wipe carefully so as not to crush the mites. Applying too much pressure will cause the mites to leave their characteristic red stains. You can also use a vacuum cleaner to get them out of harder to reach areas. A pest management professional can treat the foundaton on the outside of your home to discourage the mites from entering your home.
What are the Benefits of Professional Clover Mite Pest Control?
A pest management professional has the education, equipment and skills necessary to effectively address a clover mite problem. Finding and treating the clover mites can be challenging, especially if their is a large population. A pest management professional provides their expertise to identify the pest problem and determine the best possible solution to resolve the clover mite infestation.