Contrary to popular belief, mites are actually arthropods – not insects – and happen to be close cousins with ticks and spiders. Most mites are microscopic in size and the majority are not parasitic, meaning they don’t feed on humans or animals (with the exception of ticks). Instead, many mites feed on plants, fungi or even dead skin cells.
Termites and dust mites are the most common mites found in households throughout North America. Dust mites are completely invisible to the human eye and require a microscope to see clearly. They also happen to be one of the main causes of human allergies and have been linked to asthma, eczema and allergic rhinitis.
A female mite can lay anywhere form 40-80 eggs at one time, causing infestations to occur quickly. Dust mites thoroughly enjoy warm places in the home, such as the bedroom. This type of mite is difficult to get rid of without consulting a professional for help.
Another very popular kind of mite found within the home is the termite. This type of mite is considered to be a very social creature and live in large colonies, causing them to be very hard to get rid due to the large numbers. Each colony operates by a caste system with three main castes consisting of the reproductives, soldiers and workers. Termites vary in color and size with tones ranging anywhere from white, tan or black and sizes ¼-½ inch long. They are the most costly wood destroying pest in the United States and cause millions of dollars in damages to homeowners every year.
Although, neither of these mites attack humans, both can be taxing on homes throughout America and it’s important to contact a professional if you feel that you might have an infestation.