Or is the OP talking about Frontline for fleas for cats and dogs????
Some people use it... but it's not labeled for Poultry and only works if applied directly to the skin. That's because this medication is carried in the bloodstream. That pretty much rules out meaties & egg layers for human consumption. And that's not even getting into the potentially dangerous effects to the birds themselves... Oh and did I mention it's VERY expensive along with all that risk? Yeah... dust/DE sound great don't they?
Frontline\\ Frontline Plus for fleas and ticks is not carried in the bloodstream! That is why it is an EPA regestered product not an FDA. If it goes in the bloodstream then it is FDA. It is carried to the oil glands by the oils on the body. I worked for the company, Merial who makes it for 11 years so i'm not just guessing. I know about all there is to know about fipronil. No harm to mamals. I have known many vets who have used the spray to treat head lice in kids. I'm not suggesting you do that but it has been done.
My two Polish hens had awful poultry head lice. I tried DE and Poultry Dust (permethrin) and cleaning the coop over and over with little effect. After reading the above post and several others that said that their vet had recommended it or that their vet was USING it, I decided to test the Frontline concentrate, even if it's an off-label use. Here's my reasoning:
- Permethrin's an insecticide. It says to put it on the hens and in their coop but not on the food or in the nest boxes. Well, if it's in the coop and on the hen, it's getting into the food and the nest box. The hens are rolling in permethrin dust all the time.
- Before products like Frontline, we used to have a flea collar on the dog. It meant the dog was in a cloud of insecticide all the time too, and when it wore off, we were back to a flea party. I thanked God for Frontline on the dog and cats.
- The Frontline web site says it works by accumulating in the oil glands of the mammal.
- Here's a technical fact sheet on fipronil. It says it is fatal to bobwhite quail, and has no effect at all on mallard ducks, but that's based on ingestion. A 79% solution was applied to the skin of a rat, and only 1% got absorbed within 24 hours at ALL doses tested. Evidence on cats and dogs "found that radio-labeled fipronil was distributed primarily in the superficial skin layers. Radio-labeled fipronil was not detected in the dermis or the hypodermis (adipose tissue).22"
OK. So: Since it's used in agriculture; it's safe for pregnant and lactating dogs and cats; evidence is it stays in the skin; ill effects have been noted from ingestion but not topical use; my hens looked utterly moth eaten: I put a drop on the head of two hens.
Mites died, hens lived, no change in skin or behavior. I'm going to use it monthly until winter, one or two drops per hen. I put it on the head since they can't get their beaks into it there.
As far as eating the eggs goes: I'm taking my chances on them, because they haven't been rolled in permethrin, and fipronil isn't going through the hens' bloodstreams. If I wanted to be super cautious, I'd throw out any egg laid 24-36 hours after application.
BTW, I'm not eating the meat of my chickens, but: The same technical fact sheet tested 655 chickens for evidence of fipronil in the tissues (since it's used agriculturally, etc., to see if it's in the food supply), and "One poultry breast (0.2%) and 2 poultry thighs (0.3%) had detectible levels of fipronil. No samples contained residues that exceeded the established U.S. EPA tolerances.29". I probably wouldn't eat the meat of hens directly dosed with Frontline, but I'm ok with the eggs.
I do hope they approve it for topical use on domestic poultry. I'll let you guys know what I notice over longer term use.
p.s. I'm not bothering with the spray since it uses the exact same chemical at a lower dose, and I figure trying to spray it all over a hen would involve losing most of it into the air, breathing some of it, and less control over the dose anyway.