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How to check for mites?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I'm concerned my hens may have mites or another parasite but am unsure what to look for. Egg production has been down for about 2 weeks. We just expanded their coop into a new shaded area; and the egg production decrease corresponded with the expansion so I thought it was stress and because they didn't have access to oyster shell for a few days. But I had thought production would be back up by now if that were the cause. Tonight when I went in the hen house to check them on the roost, several were shaking their heads as if annoyed by an insect. So I'm thinking mites or another insect. We've had a lot of biting flies on our farm this spring - I added Rosemary sprigs to the hen house today and that seemed to do the trick, but the head shaking was going on without visible insects. Does anyone have advice for what exactly I should check to confirm mites or lice or other insect? Thanks!
post #2 of 4

Check around their vent area, usually that is where you can see them easiest.

Any move/change can make egg production slow down, 2weeks may not be enough time for them to adjust, you never know about chickens.

Do they dust bathe?

 

Here's more information on mite/lice, how to identify and treat:

http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/08/poultry-lice-and-mites-identification.html

http://www.fresheggsdaily.com/2013/02/mites-how-to-prevent-them-and-treat.html

http://fresheggsdaily.com/2012/01/dust-bathing-beauties.html

http://www.thepoultrysite.com/articles/1483/common-external-parasites-in-poultry-lice-and-mites/

post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great links! I checked under several chicken's wings and around their vents this morning and didn't see any sign of mites or lice, so maybe they're still recovering from the stress of the expansion and the addition of new biddies.
post #4 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ourfoxsden View Post

Thanks for the great links! I checked under several chicken's wings and around their vents this morning and didn't see any sign of mites or lice, so maybe they're still recovering from the stress of the expansion and the addition of new biddies.

If you have added new members, as well as, a "new environment" then that is most likely the cause. Give them some time to adjust to everything, hopefully they will settle down soon and begin to start laying.

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