AAAARgh. Lice AGAIN...or maybe still

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Tacampbell1973, Nov 23, 2013.

  1. Tacampbell1973

    Tacampbell1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So my little broody hen and I went through the whole chicken louse experience this summer. She is I think described as a "crossbeak". Missing top beak tip. Subsequently she has a hard time picking small bugs from her body. Couple that with her incessant need to be broody ( I have broken her up four times since summer only for a week each time before back to broody) and she is a recipe for lice infestation. Well I treated her as i said last in August, as well as the coop and the other flock members. I guess I let my guard down because I thought everything was ok again. Until yesterday. I bring my birds in my house to watch tv and cuddle at night. Different ones on different days, since the weather is cruddy so I can feed treats and spend some one on one with each bird. Well yesterday i knew within a few minutes that at least one bird had lice. I could feel them crawling on me. While it may be true that lice can't survive on a human, they can most certainly use them to get from point A to point B. I have seen and felt them firsthand. So with a whole lot of apprehension, I brought all the birds in one at a time and thoroughly checked them. Sure enough broody hen Begawky has nits on her vent and live bugs and my Polish hen Angel does too. I am nearly in tears because it is alot of hard work to get rid of these nasty things. I wound up giving both birds a bath which I wouldn't ordinarily do but the nits on Angels ventwere so big and thick that I actually wound up ripping the feather shafts out of her poor bottom. So I bathed her to dissuade infection, applied neosporin around the bottom and dusted with DE, I also have a flea and tick spray for dogs that worked before. I combed thru both birds and got at least twenty dead lice off each bird,. So after thoroughly drying them they stayed in a cage in my house while HOPEFULLY the remaining bugs died and fell off. Also during this point I dusted the rest of my birds. I finally finished up at two in the morning. I'm tired, my birds are tired, and most of all I am frustrated beyond belief. I wish therewas some way to stop these dumb bugs from existing. I thought they were non existent in my coop as winter came, only to find out they can be worse in the fall/winter. Also I can't get a straight answer on how to treat them. Some folks say use Sevin Dust, others say no it'll kill your birds, some people swear by DE others say it doesn't work. I am not employed currently and don't have the bank roll to invest in a lot of products that don't work. Also I clean my coop daily. I change the hay out in the floor every three days and the nest boxes weekly. I rake out the run every other day. I really don't know what to do. and did I mention that I am frustrated. Can anyone please suggest something that they know for sure workss and how to use properly please. Thank you
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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  3. purpletree23

    purpletree23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a re occuring mite infestation. A lot of us have been through things like this so hang in there and know that you aren't alone.

    Next time you clean out your coop clean everything out including in the nest boxes and sweep clean.

    Sprinkle Sevin dust all over the floor (thin layer) and in the nest boxes and on the roosts. Sevin won't kill your chickens.

    Instead of hay use packaged shavings. Not cedar. Toxic to chickens. Shavings aren't expensive.

    Do you have pour on Ivermectin or know someone who has it and will let you have some? On each chicken apply 3 drops to the skin between the shoulders. I know 3 drops doesn't sound like enough but stick to the dosage because more will be toxic. Make sure you apply it to the skin. If it's absorbed in the feathers it won't work. It's hard to part the feathers and the fluff to get down to the skin so maybe someone can help you.

    Treat again in 10 days. Do not eat the eggs for 15 days.

    DE is a preventative and won't help you in this situation. Dust your chickens well with Sevin dust or garden and poultry dust made with permethryn. I put mine in a box big enough for them to stand in with their heads out and dust them with a 'puff' made out of an old sock. Dust their vents and under the wings well. Dust the rest of the body and I shake my fingers through the feathers to get the dust to the skin. My chickens put up a fight but because yours are so tame they might not mind.

    Dust again in 7 days.

    The ideal dust mixture I like to use is 1/3 DE 1/3 wood stove ash and 1/3 Sevin.

    If they don't have an area to dust bathe in make them one. I use the mixture above with some added very dry dirt and have it in a large cardboard box that I cut to only 5 inches high. Make sure they have enough room to roll around in it so they can cover themselves well. They should have access to this everyday.

    If you can't afford the Ivermectin PM me. Who hasn't been laid off recently?[​IMG]

    I don't know why you are cleaning your coop everyday but we can deal with that later. Take a deep breath, know that you aren't alone and the cure is easier than you thought. It sounds like a lot but you're bigger then they are and we'll lick'em. Promise.[​IMG]
     
  4. Tacampbell1973

    Tacampbell1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi again Purpletree,
    So I am trying to understand your instructions clearly and I am wondering do you mean dust birds with the sevin dust in addition to the ivermectin or in place of. Because I do have the sevin dust on hand right now and Im itching to get started with this treatment, literally.....thank you again for the wonderful advice. You are a godsend.
    OH and when you say wood stove ash, do you mean that literally, like out of the wood stove?
    I think you may be right, it just seems overwhelming at first, but as long as I know that I am on the right track and not just using things that are prolonging their (and my) misery then it doesnt seem so bad.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2013
  5. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use either sevin or poultry dust. They both work but in my neck of the woods you can find either or, not both at the same time. Any wild birds in the area can bring them in your yard and that makes it frustrating when you thought you got them all. Hay and straw can have mites in it when you get it as well as hold louse very well. I suggest changing the bedding to something else. I use sand myself, but both pine shavings and sand are cheap to use. I use the dust as a preventive now, about every 2 months I will toss a little on their dust bath area and the bottom of the coop. Since I have done this I haven't had them back. Remember that you do have to retreat 7 days after the first treatment just incase of new hatchings (the eggs are protected and some may still hatch).

    Something else I have found out... Bleach does not kill them. The last time I had them I put a girl in an empty dog create and when some of the louse dropped off I took her out and poured bleach all over them. They were swimming in it for 30 min before I got fed up and dusted it with a little poultry dust... They all stopped moving then! I redid this experiment with water and then sevin, same results. I cleaned my coop with liquid sevin (let it dry before the chickens get to it, in liquid form it is harmful, dry it is not), dusted all the birds with poultry dust (ran out of sevin at this point), put some poultry dust in their bathing area, and retreated in 7 days. My problem was solved.

    You may think I went a little overboard, but I never want to have to deal with that again. Just thinking about it makes me itch. I hope this helps.
     
  6. purpletree23

    purpletree23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You're on the right track. Sevin will kill lice that stick to and eat the feathers. Ivermectin will kill lice and mites that bite the chickens and eat their blood. Scratch Scratch Itch Itch. I get itchy just thinking about it. Poultry dust is just like Sevin just different chemicals. Both can be used on chickens and in gardens to kill bugs. Some say the permethryn in the poultry dust is better because it comes from chrysanthemums but a poison is a poison. You could switch between the two so the bugs don't get immune to the active ingredient.

    The wood stove ash (yup a wood stove or fireplace) has been used forever. It's just like DE. The tiny particles scratch the outside of the bugs, their interior goo leaks out and they dehydrate and die.
     
  7. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

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    Sevin is an organophosphate insecticide, and is quite toxic - I would not use a powdered form in the nest boxes, as it could easily get on the eggs.
     
  8. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Pat the nesting material down, the sevin dust will settle at the bottom. Technically there's a 7 day withdrawal period after using sevin. We've been using it since the 60's in our vegetable gardens, on our dogs, and on chickens...still here typing. Always wear a mask when dusting.
     
  9. Tacampbell1973

    Tacampbell1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Actually , i don't think I willbe salvaging the eggs while I am treating them, but thank you for the advice...I truthfully haven't been able to eat eggs/chickens since I took on my pet birds. Husband on the other hand shows no regrets. Sorry I am a big wimp.
     
  10. Tacampbell1973

    Tacampbell1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    yum, good thing Iwasnt eating breakfast while reading this.....whoooooo. Interior Goo! Thats an image that wont go away.They sound like aliens.
     

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