I have been noticing little black bugs on my snake. At first I thought it was snake mites but I’m not so sure now. For one they seem slightly larger than the mites I have dealt with in the past. Another they seem to be attracted to water. I even found some dead trying to climb into an ivermectin solution I had next to the enclosure. They also don’t seem to be infecting the “normal” spots and I have only seen them on the snake and not burrowed under/between the scales. Behavior doesn’t seem to be affected either. Appetite is on point and isn’t soaking anymore than usual. Like I said, I’m not so sure they are the run of the mill parasitic snake might but might be another flavor of mite? They are just as tough if not tougher to treat for though. Anyone deal with anything similar? Anything else need to be done other than treat like normal snake mites?
I have no idea what these bugs could be but have you changed the type of substrate you use? I have heard that sometimes bugs can be found in commercial substrates that people buy in bulk such as cypress mulch etc, and these substrates should be baked in a hot oven for a short time before using……
Maybe a little more information about your setups etc might help……
Just grabbing at straws here! Hopefully somebody else can shed some light on this situation……
It’s actually been on paper. Only had him for less than 6 months. First because of quarantine then just been waiting to build a bigger enclosure that is more suitable to deeper substrate and bigger water bowl.
Have you tried to get rid of them yet? What do you use the ivermectin solution for? To clean tubs with?
I would suggest you get some PAM and spray it on some paper towel sheets, let them dry and then put them in the enclosure and put the snake back in. Repeat once a week for at least 3 weeks and then once a month for a few months. That should take care of the bugs……
Basically it is used as a pesticide. Not with the snake in the enclosure. He gats a soak and I clean it out well and spray the ivermectin and let it dry.
I’ve never heard of the Pam in paper towels. What’s that do?
PAM is a product called Provent a Mite. It is lethal to snake mites so I thought it might be worth a try for these bugs. It CANNOT be used on the snake, just the bedding/paper towels.
I knew what ivermectin is. I figured you were using it for cleaning. Just don’t use both at the same time……
I would try the Provent A Mite. You should also spray some on a rag and wipe around all the openings as well.
Using Provent-A-Mite on paper towels kills mites but doesn’t harm the snake. Spray the paper towels outside and let dry thoroughly.
I’ve treated ever single one of my 16 ball pythons back then.
The bugs being attracted to water is the same thing I experienced.
Hold the snake with the tail closest to you and look down the sides and belly. Mites will crawl under scales and you can see them visibly under the scales. Look around the mouth and head , they like being there too for some reason.
Good luck !
I treated my collection weekly for three weeks.
Wiped every shelf and the entire rack with P.A.M.
I never had a problem after that.
@buckeyeballs Do you think these bugs are actually well fed mites?
Try to get picks to show us, either of them on the snake or on the plain white paper towel, but I am willing to bet they ARE snake mites, sometimes you really don’t see them being aggressive or burrowing on your snake, but if they are big I would think they are full of blood or babies. Treat now, sounds like he is basically in quarantine already, keep him in a different room preferably to any other reptile pets and do use the Pam like @caron suggested.
@renegade_reptiles Try to squish one of the big ones to see if it is full of blood…….
From what I’ve read from the OP
Absolutely sounds like mites to me…
Yep. I can’t imagine what else they could be……