Recently, I went on a service call for a new residential client in Manchester, NJ who was having a clover mite issue. Clover mites dark reddish brown pests that are only about 1/30 of an inch, which is smaller than a pinhead! They aren’t harmful to humans as they do not feed on blood like other species of mites, however, clover mites do tend to invade houses in large numbers and can leave dark red stains if crushed. Clover mite activity increases as temperatures start to drop, during which time they pay homage to their name by feasting on clovers, over-fertilized grass, and many other plants. In fact, clover mites eat more than 200 different plant species, including some flowers.
As I began my inspection I noticed a dry patch of grass along a particular area on the exterior of the property — this is a sign of clover mites. In the case of large populations, clover mites can destroy grass, leaving behind dry patches. Upon closer inspection I discovered a colony of clover mites and that they were gaining access into the home via a small crack underneath the siding. As I continued my inspection inside the home I found multiple clover mites embedded in the client's carpet. Only in extreme circumstances where the exterior infestation has gotten so large, will clover mites invade the interior of a home. This was the case here.
For interior treatment, the safest and most effective method is to remove the clover mites with a vacuum. I vacuumed the carpet, the surrounding floors, walls, and, for good measure, all the windowsills throughout the home. For the exterior, I applied a light liquid application perimeter treatment along the foundation wall to the bottom of the siding and coming out to the soil/grass junction to the masonry wall. This application deters clover mites from their harboring areas. Additionally, once they come in contact with the application, they will transfer it to one another. Within a short amount of time, the population is severely reduced. Once I finished, I advised the homeowner to seal the gaps around their window frames to close up all current and potential entry points to prevent any future infestations. The homeowner agreed and scheduled an appointment with a contractor.