Little bugs, what are they?

A question from a fellow grower:

I need help these little jumping bugs are around my seedlings what do I do ? There tiny I hope you can see it in the picture …

Hello fellow grower :grinning:, it look a like springtail (collembola).

Collembolans are omnivorous, free-living organisms that prefer moist conditions. They do not directly engage in the decomposition of organic matter, but contribute to it indirectly through the fragmentation of organic matter and the control of soil microbial communities.

Most species have an abdominal, tail-like appendage, the furcula, that is folded beneath the body to be used for jumping when the animal is threatened.

Springtails commonly consume fungal hyphae and spores, but also have been found to consume plant material and pollen, animal remains, colloidal materials, minerals and bacteria. Springtails are cryptozoa frequently found in leaf litter and other decaying material, where they are primarily detritivores and microbivores, and one of the main biological agents responsible for the control and the dissemination of soil microorganisms.

While it’s often claimed that springtails do little noticeable damage, they will feed on roots and moist plant matter, causing “leaf stipling” (yellowing) and cause other harm to growth and vigor. Still, many growers choose to tolerate them rather than treat them.

If springtails have become such a nuisance they must be sprayed, use an OMRI listed for organic production compound such as azadirachtin, an anti-feedant and insect growth regulator (IGR) that controls pests through starvation and growth disruption.

Use crawling insect killers with diatomaceous earth to repel the pests around places where they might enter.
Springtails frequently occur in the soil of potted plants. Inspect the potting mixture of every plant you intend to bring home by testing it with your thumbs and watching for springing. Lichen or other soil covers that are organic food sources for the pests should be examined carefully. Be especially cautious if plants show signs of excess moisture. If you suspect insect activity, quarantine house plants, preferably outside, to allow the soil to completely dry before bringing them in.
Letting soil dry completely as possible is the best way to deal with infested pots already in the home.
Sprinkle Safer Brand diatomaceous earth on potted soils to help them dry and to repel springtails.
If infestations in potted plants persist, use a non-toxic, biodegradable soil drench like SNS 203 to kill and repel the bugs. (More than one application may be required.)(Active Ingredient:Clove Oil …… 1.5% Rosemary Oil …… 0.53% Polyglyceryl Oleate …… 0.6% Lauric Acid …… 0.11%)

You can also use neem oil or BTK.

Hoping that’s helping you, fellow grower :grinning:

~Al :innocent: :v:

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