I use it in my bettle traps bellow my screen board. It works great last longer and is cheaper than veg oil. It is not a posion. It does dehydrate insects when they come in contact with it. There is a food grade so you can like your finger when your done.
With the given precautions, my guess is the only way it will affect exoskeletal insects would be through them actually breathing the DE.
DE is very dusty and can cause lung problems if breathed heavily, so when applying it dry always wear a good dust mask or stand up wind.
FYI DE sold for swimming pool filters is ineffective for insect control because it has been heated and chemically treated. It won't kill insects and it is very dangerous to breathe. Natural and food grade DE will kill beneficial insects too, so use it sparingly to kill problem infestations of harmful insects.
t:Wow which did that rabbit go, we are way off the orginal question but another thing I did with it, I had some frames in an observation hive that were "eat up" with SHBs and I put them in a nuc with DE on the bottom board, it killed the larva all the larva SHB and bee larve because the bees faned it all over the box
I know one guy who uses DE to filtre wax. But he also uses clay and charcol to filtre to get the wax white. How he does it, i do not know. He does a good job, and will be sadly missed in the candle filtreing wax department...got out of that side line
DE is harmful to insects because it is very sharp, glass like skelatal remains of diatoms, scratching and causing cuts in the exoskelaton of arthopods, thus making them bleed lymph and prone to disease.
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