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Springtails

Posted by sthelp MO (My Page) on
Sat, Apr 22, 06 at 1:55

We just bought a new home and our back yard is infested with Springtails. I mean if you look in the dirt they are everywhere.

I really don't care about in the yard but they are coming in the house. Not in huge numbers but enough to be annoying. We have a 2 story home and they frequent the bottom level. They usually come under the door in the back so on the tile we'll have quite a few. The bathroom downstairs always has 2-4 in the sink and 5-10 in the tub.

We even get a few that come out of the drains upstairs.

I've tried spraying around the foundatioin and that doesn't seem to help. There really isn't any mulch around the foundation. The back yard does have straw in it as they were trying to grow grass but it's really patchy.

Should I rake up all the straw?

Also I notice that in the front of the house we have no issues at all and in the front half of the lawn we actually have sod installed...would it help to have sod put in the back yard?

There are just so many I'm afraid one days there'll be thousands in the house if I don't do something.

If they would just stay out of the house I'd be fine. I'm going to caulk the door tomorrow as well.

Any suggestions?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Springtails

In the home, they can develop nesting sites any where it remains nice and moist, including inside the walls, under slabs, along pipes and drains. They may not be coming in from outside, is what I am suggesting. Is your home newly built? Not uncommon for them to build up large numbers in a new home.

Do all that you can do to eliminate moisture problems in and around the home. If you have a crawl space, that is a likely area for a large population of spring tails to arise.

Proper control probably requires the services of a well trained professional, and I suggest that you arm yourself with information gleaned from the web before making calls. You don't want someone who will come out and simply spray around the perimeters as you did (totally not effective) but will actually try to seek some nesting places.


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RE: Springtails

That a very strong possibility...it is a new house. I see them coming out of the drains and also sometims out from under the walls so that's a good point. I also notice them come under the door plating so I caulked that all in.

If they were in the house why would they be coming up one drain but not another?

Location of nesting site?


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RE: Springtails

I guess my first question is why are you bothered by springtails?

As a general rule they are attracted by moisture and decomposing organic matter. Rarely are they anything more than a nuisance as house guests, not generally damaging to anything.

In your new home you may well have moisture issues as homes are not protected by anything against rain until the roof is on and windows in. So, you may well have moisture spots inside walls and whatnot. That you find them around drains isn't suprising given the moisture and there is probably sources of decomposing organic matter they consider food building up in those drains.

If you absolutely must kill them rather than wait them out until they disappear on their own due to changing environmental conditions (whatever moisture they were attracted to will likely dry up eventually) then use any product containing pyrethrins which are known to kill them.

Don't do a perimeter spray as it is pointless and pyrethrins kill much more than the springtails. Just target those areas where you notice significant populations as well as any areas in your home you know to have moisture issues.


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RE: Springtails

I have had a severe infestation of springtails in my house starting in July when it was very hot and humid. It took a couple of weeks for me to realize I had something other than mosqitos or fleas in the house. I spent a lot of money on various DIY treatments and so on. One exterminator said to just wait it out and wouldn't come to do anything. Another came three times with little success. After a lot of research, I discovered the humidity aspect of control and am keeping the house humidity under 40%. I run a dehumidifier full time and keep fans going on the basement floors. They are everywhere, including on me, in my hair and bed. There's no place to sit or lie down in my home where they don't come after me looking for moisture. I've awakened in the morning with eyes, ears, nose and mouth full of them. It's disgusting. They don't like Bounce dryer sheets and lint roller (that thing has saved my sanity!) or talcum powder. I have covered all floors, furniture, beds, etc., with borax, used sprays made of various liquids: orange degreaser, windex, Dawn dishwashing liquid, pure vanilla, alcohol, essential oils (tea tree, clove, cedar, juniper, oregano) with little success. I've soaked everything that touches me for two hours in hot vinegar/borax, then wash in hottest water with detergent and tea tree oil, dry on hottest temperature. It helps at the time, but you can't treat everything in the house at the same time and they move around. I keep clothes I'm going to wear next in the deep freeze, put them on after a little warm up and leave. It's the only way I can go out and not have bugs crawling around under my clothing. If anyone has better ideas, please share.


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RE: Springtails

To control insects that are in, or coming in, the house you need to understand what they need, such as moisture and food, and eliminate those things which in turn will eliminate the insects. Spraying poisons only controls the symptoms, the insects, and not the reasons they are there and that means you will have more, In addition those poisons will harm you as you breath them.


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RE: Springtails

I have a 5 year old house and have had an infestations of springtails since day 1. This year is the worst ever. I have used 4 different professional exterminators and they are pretty useless. I have been doing my own spraying inside and outside, especially under the siding. We also bomb our basement monthly in the summer. I noticed today they are unbelivable in numbers this year and come out in droves just after a rain storm. The home owner that has them in the house on her clothes etc should bomb her house. Then go to Southern States and buy Talstar concetrate and a pump sprayer and spray inside and outside monthly.

I am ready to remove my siding because I think they are nesting in my siding.


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RE: Springtails

To effectively control springtails, or any other unwanted insect in the house, you need to know something about them and the environment that encourages them to breed and grow. Once that is understood and steps are taken to change that environment they will disappear without using any kind of poison that is harmful to you as well.

Here is a link that might be useful: Springtails


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