How to Get Rid of Black Pepper Mites

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Bird mites feed on fledglings.

Black pepper mite is a term used for a bird mite. They are ectoparasites, which means a parasite that lives outside the host. A black pepper mite's habitat is animal nests because they feed on the blood of birds or rodents.


They are not typically a problem with people as they prefer to live in the nest of the host. When something happens that causes them to move out, they may invade a human living space. For example, when fledgling birds leave the nest, the mites will leave, sometimes in great numbers. They do bite and cause itching, but they do not burrow in a person's skin and cannot survive on human blood.

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They are irritating, but fairly easy to remove from a home because they do not multiply in a human host environment.


Step 1

Find and remove the nest or origination. Because black pepper mites do not fly or jump, the nest is often close by. The nest could be either a bird or rodent nest, so it could be in the rafters, eaves or gutters. For rodents, tracking down the nest might prove a bit more difficult. To protect from bites, wear rubber gloves during the removal process. Dispose of the nest away from the house.

Step 2

Thoroughly clean all rooms where mites are present. This includes cleaning curtains, carpets and washing or vacuuming cloth-covered furniture and bedding. Once this task is complete, remove the vacuum cleaner bag and take it outside the house to dispose of.


Step 3

Wash all surfaces. A mild detergent is typically sufficient, however, if an insecticide is preferred, use a botanical type. Botanical insecticides are made from plant extracts and are much safer to use in a home around people.



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