Chicken Mites, Please Help

reeds16

In the Brooder
6 Years
Jan 27, 2013
32
3
22
I've been raising free-range chickens for a while now and I had a flock about a year and a half ago that got a very bad case of mites. I gave them dust baths with ashes, diatomaceas earth, and mite dust and I dusted the individual birds and sprayed them with mite spray. I cleaned the coops and sprayed them with bleach and mite spray many times but after a few days the mites would always come back. After about a year of trying to get rid of the mites I ended up butchering the whole flock because I couldn't stand to see them constantly scratching and losing feathers. They looked really uncomfortable
sad.png
. i did a final spraying and cleaning of the coops and let them sit all winter and all of the mites disappeared. This spring i started from scratch with 120 new layers and they seamed completely healthy and mite free but last night I went to put them in and I saw that the roosts and birds were crawling with a new hatch of mites. i really can't think of any other way to get rid of them. I raise free-range eggs and poultry on a commercial scale, so i can't tend to each bird, but I still care about them and want them to be happy. Do most farmers just let their birds get infested with mites since it takes a long time to do serious damage? Or are there other remedies that I don't know about. Please let me know if you have any information. Thanks!
 

Angiebubs

Songster
8 Years
Aug 19, 2011
2,335
82
226
Amery, WI WI/MN border
Ivermectrin pour on for cattle....gets rid of mites, live worms, etc. You can read more about it on here. I know many say to toss eggs for awhile however, when I researched it-this is a product used in africa for humans to rid of worms so I do not think it would be toxic to eat the eggs. I believe I called the company as well and was told something similiar-that they cannot say it is ok for human use but agreed that it has been used on humans....You can further research as there are many good articles on BYC about this product.
 

loveourbirds

Songster
6 Years
Mar 27, 2013
2,857
322
198
waverly ohio
Ivermectrin pour on for cattle....gets rid of mites, live worms, etc. You can read more about it on here. I know many say to toss eggs for awhile however, when I researched it-this is a product used in africa for humans to rid of worms so I do not think it would be toxic to eat the eggs. I believe I called the company as well and was told something similiar-that they cannot say it is ok for human use but agreed that it has been used on humans....You can further research as there are many good articles on BYC about this product.
with severe infestations this is the best. I have used seven dust and DE to cure them but I have never had a bad problem. with 120 birds if they aren't listed as organic, I would go with the ivermectrin.
 

ChickensAreSweet

Heavenly Grains for Hens
9 Years
Jun 8, 2010
15,100
674
398
Pacific NW- where the Douglas Firs grow
I have dealt extensively with mites, and so please heed my two pieces of advice:

1.) When you did your mite treatments, did you ALWAYS repeat the treatment in 7 days? If not, then that is the problem due to the hatching eggs.

2.) Also, did you get rid of the nest box material and all the shavings? That is what happened to me- if I don't get rid of all the shavings and nest box material each treatment they come right back.

The life cycle of mites is short and thus if you don't retreat in 7-10 days they come back.

Diatomaceous earth will not treat an infestation- I use permethrin- if you are in another country then use what is approved for poultry, whatever that may be.

For a huge flock, I would consider spraying the insecticide on instead of dusting them. You will need to spray each bird, unfortunately. I like sand on the floor of the coop, as I find that I have less mite problems that way. I don't toss my sand (and to get the poo out I use a kitty litter scoop after raking)- I mix in a bit of poultry dust and stir it. But I still use shavings in the nest boxes and throw those away with treatments.

http://msucares.com/pubs/infosheets/is0331.html
Here is the only link I found that has currently approved pesticides listed. The links below are still useful but check pesticide approvals before using.

http://www.uky.edu/Ag/PAT/recs/livestk/recpou/poulic.htm
please note that at least one of the pesticides here are not approved anymore for poultry

http://msucares.com/pubs/infosheets/is0331.htm
same here- at least one isn't approved anymore

http://extension.entm.purdue.edu/es...le=articles/control_of_poultry_pests.txt&id=1
and here

http://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/pdf/8162.pdf
and here

You too can be mite free!

DE can be used in a dust bath that you set up for them- a sandbox would work. You can mix some woodstove ashes, DE, dirt, and sand (or even just sand). This will aid them in keeping low populations of mites. However, I still have to treat my birds around every 4 months. Keeping away the wild birds will help you as well.
 

reeds16

In the Brooder
6 Years
Jan 27, 2013
32
3
22
Thank you everyone for your help! I'm looking into the products that you mentioned
 

casportpony

Spreadsheet Queen
BYC Staff
Project Manager
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Jun 24, 2012
107,265
285,762
2,062
The Golden State
I've been raising free-range chickens for a while now and I had a flock about a year and a half ago that got a very bad case of mites. I gave them dust baths with ashes, diatomaceas earth, and mite dust and I dusted the individual birds and sprayed them with mite spray. I cleaned the coops and sprayed them with bleach and mite spray many times but after a few days the mites would always come back. After about a year of trying to get rid of the mites I ended up butchering the whole flock because I couldn't stand to see them constantly scratching and losing feathers. They looked really uncomfortable
sad.png
. i did a final spraying and cleaning of the coops and let them sit all winter and all of the mites disappeared. This spring i started from scratch with 120 new layers and they seamed completely healthy and mite free but last night I went to put them in and I saw that the roosts and birds were crawling with a new hatch of mites. i really can't think of any other way to get rid of them. I raise free-range eggs and poultry on a commercial scale, so i can't tend to each bird, but I still care about them and want them to be happy. Do most farmers just let their birds get infested with mites since it takes a long time to do serious damage? Or are there other remedies that I don't know about. Please let me know if you have any information. Thanks!
You could try ivermectin in their water, but talk to a vet first.
 

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