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Clover mites tend to be most readily noticed in the autumn and spring, but they can even cause problems on sunny, warm days in the winter. They are not technically an insect, but rather a true mite. They are red or reddish-brown in color and very small, often smaller than the head of a pin. They may leave little rusty brown marks on fabric or walls when crushed.
The clover mite does not actually damage a house and it doesn’t cause disease in humans or animals. Rather, it can destroy a lawn and plants around a house, which is why clover mites are considered to be such annoying pests. They will suck sap out of grasses and other plants and then invade cracks and crevices in the house when winter comes in an effort to hibernate. So, after they’ve destroyed your lawn, clover mites will then try to seek shelter inside the house by crawling through cracks around windows or underneath siding in the walls or even under shingles. Most homeowners regard this as unacceptable behavior and seek to have something done about it.
Clover mites will inevitably cluster together in large groups on the sunny side of a building or house. If they are able to gain entry into the home, they may sun themselves on window sills or be observed on walls or tables. They don’t like the cold, which slows them down, but when spring comes, their activity picks up again, particularly on warm and sunny days. After dealing with them inside and around the house all winter, homeowners unfortunately find that in the spring the clover mites will return to their feeding ground in the lawns and surrounding plants, causing havoc outside instead of inside when the summer comes.
Clover mites taking refuge inside of a house can be remarkably difficult to control safely. Many people with clover mite problems with vacuum them up or wipe them up with a damp rag, though a pyrethrum aerosol bomb may also work to keep them under control. Pyrethrum spray may kills the mites initially but won’t provide any residual action. Some experts advise that homeowners spray the cracks and crevices that exist around windows and doors to try to keep the clover mites from gaining entry. Use an insecticide that’s safe, however such as chlorpyrifos.
Many people living in areas where clover mites are a problem find that in order to get rid of these creatures and keep them out of the house, they have to create a strategy. First of all, spraying the outside of the house and the lawn around the house with a good miticide can help kill off a large number of clover mites. But then, the next step is to cultivate loose soil around the perimeter of the house. Clover mites have difficulty crossing loose cultivated soil, so homeowners are wise to create a strip of about 1 ½ feet to 2 feet wide between the lawn and the house to keep the clover mites from coming in during the winter months.