I have had lice here and there and haven't had much difficulty it treating and getting rid of them. But this is just a mess. I am still thinking I could have possibly gotten them from the straw. My bachelors have been in the hoop away from all the other flock and no sparrows in with them, and they are covered!
The other thing that has me totally boggled, is that I have some who are covered in the breeding pens, and other birds in the same pen show nothing at all. HOW??? One NH rooster has them bad, has been breeding the hens, but they hens have no a one on them. I am just baffled. The Cochins are the worst, but the rooster in there hasn't a thing crawling on him, but the hens were loaded and the pullets had them starting up fast. Again, with breeding going on in the pen, you would think he would have them too, but nope. The weather didn't help me with getting things cleaned out more either.
I've wondered the same thing, why some and not all? Been told that a healthy hen/rooster can successfully withstand an infestation but I really really doubt that. Perhaps some are better at grooming and dust bathing. I don't have an answer.
I think it isn't just sparrows, I think that rabbits and squirrels and mice and voles and...all could carry some kind of parasite (mites? lice?) that could be shed.
Also, I think straw is considered a culprit because it can shelter them, but it doenst seem likely that it would carry them in to a coop or run, unless they were contaminated . Which to me means it would be unlikely that the straw was stored where there animal hosts for these critters. I'm thinking if you find the critters, you are best off cleaning out any straw because it could harbor them.
My wooden roosts get coated with motor oil (new, not used). The wood absorbs it, and after a couple of years I figure nothing is going into the wood, and then I only have to worry about the corners/seams .
Cold morning here: 22, but it is going to be sunny. Those quail want out....I would like to delay releasing them til the spring is really hear. What the heck would they eat at this time in the year in the wild?