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03-27-2013, 10:47 AM #1
A VERY unusual dilemma -- fleas!!
My partner and I have been living in our flat for about 8 months now, and over the last few weeks to a month I have been getting bites around my ankles every now and again at night. I had assumed it was mosquitoes, as we sleep with our windows open at night since it's so hot this time of year. But I was sitting on the couch reading today and felt an itch on my arm -- and to my horror, looked down to see a flea!
We don't have any pets (aside from fish), but the people who lived here before us had a dog. That was WELL over 10 months ago though. Our couches and bed (which we've had for 8 months) belonged to my father, who has several dogs and cats.
My immediate reaction is to bug bomb the house -- but is there a way of doing this without hurting the fish? My tank's all have hoods but they have holes at the back for the canisters and cords to go in. Is there some way I can safely cover them? Has anyone done this?
Please help me -- my skin feels like it's crawling as we speak.
03-27-2013, 11:16 AM #2
Start by finding out the extent of the problem. Set a few flea traps. Take a deep plate, a soup plate. Place a candle in the middle. Fill with water. Light and leave overnight (of course in the middle of the floor). Fleas hunt by IR will home in on the candle and drown.
If that show just a few fleas you can probably get on top of this by vacuuming very well for 2 weeks every day.
If you do need chemicals tape bin bags over the lids to close every opening and start with flea powder. Bombing is, in my opinion, a last resort and high risk for your tanks.
03-27-2013, 12:23 PM #3
Borax will kill fleas. When I lived in FL, I would buy a box of Mule Team 100. It's in the grocery stores in the laundry soap section but I don't know if you have it there.
I would sprinkle it in the cushions of my couch and chairs and on the floor. Vac the floor often, as well, and then take the bag outside to dump it. You must dump it, tho. You might have been somewhere where they have pets and carried them home on your socks or pants.
03-27-2013, 12:41 PM #4
I moved into my apartment, and quickly found out there were fleas. I had 13 tanks set up. It took an exterminator 3 visits to get rid of them (thankfully they guaranteed results). I think they were persistent because they were protected underneath the tank stands. The first time I went crazy covering the tanks with trash bags and tape and turned off the filters. After that, all I did was just throw trash bags over the tanks - no tape, left the filters running. One of my tanks didn't even have a top on it (broke during the move). Didn't lose a single fish. In my experience you have nothing to worry about. Nuke 'em and be done with it.
Last edited by jaysee; 03-27-2013 at 12:44 PM.
03-27-2013, 01:01 PM #5
03-27-2013, 01:04 PM #6
03-27-2013, 01:11 PM #7
03-27-2013, 01:14 PM #8
Products to combat fleas will probably vary. I remember looking into this some time ago. Some attack the nervous system, others clog their breathing. There will be products that are highly toxic to aquatic animals and ones far less so.
I always advice people to try and obtain the msds for the product they intend to use. That's the only way to make an informed decision
03-27-2013, 02:05 PM #9
Since you don't have pets, it will be much easier.
Find an IGR formulated for fleas. It's perfectly safe. Spray thoroughly according to the directions on the bottle.
Vacuum lots (daily and thoroughly...baseboards, etc.). If you have a vacuum with bags - which is better in this case - you can add some solid insecticide to the bag...which will kill any fleas that you vacuum up (vs. them escaping).
You should notice some improvements in a couple of days - and you should be all clear in about 6 weeks provided you don't get a new infestation (via the neighbour, etc.)55 g Goldfish Tank - 5 Fancies, 2 Dojos
25 g Tropical Tank - Celestial Pearl Danio/Mixed
03-27-2013, 02:16 PM #10
0125 - BGK, pictus cats, silver dollars, kissing gouramis, palmas bichir, delhezi bichir
125 - Red severum, bolivian rams, Turquoise rainbows, irian red rainbows, loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, pearl gouramis
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, elephant nose, spotted ctenopoma, upside down cats
QTs - 29, 20H, 20L, 10