cutting off lice infected feathers?


May 8, 2015
Hello there. I've just joined as recently discovered my fav hen has lice. I've been treating her with powder but can see clumps of eggs on her feather shafts around her vent. She has started to pull out her feathers in this area too. My question is, is it ok to cut off the badly infected feathers? Why wait for the eggs to hatch. Will the feathers take long to grow back? This is Ireland although summer it's still cold.
Thanks in advance
I'm glad you joined our community!

It would probably be fine to cut off the lice-infested feathers. If you cut them, though, they will not grow back until your hen molts.
I don't think a nit comb for humans would work on feather shafts but, you might want to try it. Ick. Would Vaseline help disengage them?
Welcome, glad you have joined us, but sorry with the lice battle.

Lice Nits are very hard to remove. You could try a little warm soapy water and scrape some off but even on human hair they are difficult to remove. With a heavy infestation, it would be best to treat with dusting or by using drops of Ivermectin on the back of the neck under the guidance of a Vet. And keep retreating at intervals when the nits hatch to kill each crop. IMO even if you pull or cut the feathers, you won't be able to get all nits off. If you do remove feathers/nits, make sure you destroy those nits so they don't hatch and find new hosts.

You can also try a 50% vinegar solution, it can help loosen the glue that holds those nits in place. Dab some on a clump and then scrape and see if that will help remove them.
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