Diatomaceous earth duster: What is it?

Diatomaceous Earth Duster: What Is It? - Dr. Killigan's

Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is a safe and non-toxic material for bug control. It is completely safe for humans and totally friendly to the environment. No poisons, no chemicals, and no bugs!

DE is a chalky rock dust made up of the silica from shell fossils of single-celled microorganisms known as diatoms. Diatoms are found in bodies of water around the world and are the main players in the world’s food chain. Diatoms supply a majority of the oxygen in our atmosphere and absorb up to half of the carbon dioxide in our air. Diatoms were created long ago when they died and sank to the bottom of bodies of water. Time and pressure turned these diatoms into fossils. Their remains are mined today for a wide variety of different products.

Food grade DE is a safe and effective tool for bug control


DE is a bug control material so safe that you can eat it! (Though you wouldn’t want to, and we wouldn’t recommend it.) Diatomaceous Earth is generally manufactured in different grades for different uses. Food Grade DE is completely safe for all mammals, and there are a number of known healthful uses available for humans. The FDA mandates that Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth is free from arsenic, lead, and other toxic material. It is therefore safe for use in food processing for humans and all mammals. 

Bugs, however, do not fare well with DE. Bugs with exoskeletons–all the insects and spiders–are disposed of through Diatomaceous Earth. As the chalky stuff clings to their outsides, it dehydrates them and disrupts their life cycle quickly and effectively without toxins or poisons.

What is the best Diatomaceous earth duster to use for bug control?

Here is the key to effectively using DE for bug control. You must get it to the areas where the bugs are, so that it will stick to their bodies. It really is that simple! Dusters are great for getting DE to the places where you need it to go. Oftentimes, this is in crevices under cabinets, or appliances. Remember, food grade DE is non-toxic and can be used in your kitchen.

While food grade DE is non-toxic, it can dehydrate your skin. It is best not to inhale it directly into your lungs. (Shocking right?!) Latex gloves and a breathing mask are good ideas when using a Diatomaceous Earth duster.

Types of (DE) dusters


A Diatomaceous Earth bulb duster is an excellent choice for clean and precise application of DE. A bulb duster with an adequate reservoir and a well-designed nozzle allows for controlled dusting of uniform levels of DE. High-quality bulb dusters are made from rubber and metal parts and keep the bug control process safe and non-toxic for humans and pets and safe for the environment.

Among the commercially manufactured dusters is the Dr. Killigan's Insect Buster®. It has a high quality rubber reservoir and brass nozzle for dusting into tight areas as well as larger surfaces. Its commercial design prevents clogs and helps keep the dusting confined to the intended treatment areas.

Another option is a hand duster for DE that makes use of a pump to spray the dust on plants or on other larger areas. Dusters with a pumping action might not be the best choice for treatment of smaller areas, or along cracks and crevasses.

DE is so safe that you can use a homemade duster with no worries. That is, if you have lots of time on your hands! You can find many different DIY plans that make use of plastic bottles to dust desired treatment areas.


Dr. Killigan’s is your source for Diatomaceous Earth for safe, non-toxic, and effective bug disposal in your home, business, yard, and garden. Check us out for the best choices for your DE duster and other bug control supplies.

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