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Bugs in the water

This is a discussion on Bugs in the water within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; My orchids sit on trays of rocks and I put water in the trays to ...

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  1. #1
    blue is offline Junior Member
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    Question Bugs in the water

    My orchids sit on trays of rocks and I put water in the trays to increase the humidity. Recently I noticed tiny little bugs swimming in the water and so took the trays outside added Clorox. When I added the Clorox I noticed that some of the bugs crawled up on the rocks, so I also added enough water to cover the rocks. It looked like that took care of it.

    But days later inside with clean trays and clean rocks and fresh water, the problem is starting again. Now I suspect the bugs might be coming from the orchid pots, although I can't see any there. The bugs are like tiny hyphens, just little straight lines that are less than an eighth of an inch long.

    So my question is: What are these and what is the best way to rid the orchid pots of any bugs that might be in them?

    blue

  2. #2
    magooba is offline Senior Member
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    Hi Blue, the trouble with bugs is that they lay eggs and eggs and eggs ! I'd treat a few times, to catch each generation as they hatch. Not familliar with Clorax, but I'd imagine that there may be a prescribed treatment plan indicated. A picture is always appreciated here (if you can manage it!), and it may be that what you have is harmless, even if they' are icky !!.

  3. #3
    Brutal_Dreamer's Avatar
    Brutal_Dreamer is offline Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    The bleach should kill them, but their eggs will continue to hatch out. I agree with Magooba, post a photo so we get a close look at the buggers. Then someone might be able to help you find out where they are coming from and how to treat for them.

    Cheers,
    BD

  4. #4
    Cjcorner's Avatar
    Cjcorner is offline Senior Member
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    Icky bugs need to stay away from the 'chids. I saw a big spider on one of my catt's outside the other day and chased it towards a nice little gecko that promptly ate it. Gecko's are an orchid's best friend. Good luck with your buggies.....
    Connie

  5. #5
    Mare is offline Junior Member
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    Hi--I read your note, am an entomologist and thought this might help. I often find springtails (google: springtails eat) are in the rocks, fir bark, and moss that I have my orchids in.....they eat rotting organic matter, bacteria, fungi and so shouldnt' be a problem. They are very tiny, sometimes smaller than a pinhead, and look like tiny white or grayish things crawling or jumping. They can also be found floating on the surface of the water in the humidity trays....you would be hard pressed to totally get rid of them as they can come in through the screens, etc. I have found them on windowsills in the spring.So, if that is what the bugs are no worry....hope this helps
    Mare

  6. #6
    blue is offline Junior Member
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    Mare, thanks for the suggestion. These bugs seem to be black. They are larger than a pinhead, but probably not an eighth of an inch long. I'm guessing they are about 2 millimeters long. I think they are thinner than the pictures I could find of springtails. Of course they are too small for me to see legs, etc. But, they do float on the water, crawl, and jump.

    So could they be springtails? And I shouldn't worry about them?

    blue

  7. #7
    Mare is offline Junior Member
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    There are large springtails that get to pinhead size and the colors can vary, but I dont' think I've seen black ones very dark grey, yes. They are very thin side to side, however....can you catch some and put in an alcohol vial to kill...don't suppose you can photo something that small??? Are you in the US? If so, maybe you could mail some dead ones to me?
    Mare

  8. #8
    blue is offline Junior Member
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    Unhappy

    There have been suggestions to submit a picture of these bugs, but they are just too small. They look like a tiny black straight line, maybe 2 millimeters long.

    blue

  9. #9
    blue is offline Junior Member
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    Mare, I just killed tried to get rid of them again today. I'll have to wait until they appear again. Thanks. Yes, I'm in the US.

    blue

  10. #10
    blue is offline Junior Member
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    Update on bugs in the water --
    They are beginning to appear again and upon closer inspection, I believe they are dark gray, not black, and are probably springtails, as Mare suggested earlier. It looks like I over-estimated their size previously. Anyway, I need not worry about them destroying my orchids or hatching into something that causes trouble. Thanks for the help.

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