Dust bath DE ratio


In the Brooder
5 Years
Sep 24, 2014
Dallas, TX
Hello all! I'm making a dust bath for my chickens tomorrow. I have three babies that are still inside, but I was given two chickens over the weekend that are probably about to start laying. I'm concerned that one or both may have mites....eek!! SO, I've been reading up on mixing food grade DE in with sand or dust to help them clean themselves and kill the parasites. However, I cannot find what ratio of DE to sand to use...can some please in lighten me! Also, please give me other suggestions as to what I should do. I don't want to put the babies (they are about a month old) out in the coop to even introduce them to the grown girls until the mites are gone!! THANK YOU ALL!!!


12 Years
Jan 27, 2007
Keep the newcomers quarantined from the little guys for a month, anyway (to be on safe side). Examine the older ones over thoroughly (if they are hosting mites then it is best to treat with a formulation that will kill the mites immediately (Sevin, etc).

Dust bath is more a preventative treatment (we've never added more than a couple of handfuls of ADE to the wood ashes in the firepit), Sand is more a carrier, here; the wood ashes/local soil/ and just a bit of ADE makes for quite the `therapeutic cloud'.


Intentional Solitude
Premium Feather Member
15 Years
Feb 3, 2007
Blue Ridge Mtns. of North Georgia
I agree with John. If they have mites, treat them. Dustbaths are a preventative, not a cure.

Don't know how old your young ones are, but keep the new ones quarantined away from the others for over a month, dust for mites/lice and worm them, but do NOT give antibiotics. Invermection pour on generic is good for lice and mites and will kill some worms at the same time, though not tapeworms or a couple other tough types. Dose 5 drops on the back of the bare neck skin for each adult bird, 2 drops if they are bantams. Check my sig line for quarantine procedures.

Let me tell you a fact of chickens, my new friend. They don't dustbathe where you want them to, oftentimes. They will make a dustbath from hard ground on their own. They never do what you want, LOL! You can make them a nice DE-laced dustbath and they'll ignore it for hard ground they scratch and "beak up".

Welcome to BYC!!
Last edited:

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom