Ever Been Bit By Northern Fowl Mites?


14 Years
Dec 20, 2008
The fowl mites were horrific this summer, worse than I can recall in all my years keeping fowl. When I treated the barn for them, I got loads of the varmints in my hair and clothes. Yech!

Thought I washed them out but when I woke up the next day I had little itchy bites on my arms and neck. Not skeeter bites or anything like that. I suspect it's the fowl mites.

Do they actually feed on any kind of blood including human? If so, the "Eew Factor" just went up substantially. I can't recall every having gotten bitten by fowl mites before, but they might just be feistier this year than usual.
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It all depends on whether you are allergic or not. I get bit by mites, and I puff up and itch like crazy. My husband gets bit by mites, and... nothing. No reaction. Lucky devil!
CAS, I will save your thread for weekend reading when I have suitably prepared myself!

CMV, that's awful -- being allergic. Do antihistimines help? There are things you can put directly on the skin, too, such as the pureed onion poultice my grandmothers used to prepare for bug bites and minor scratches.

Fortunately for me I am not allergic, so it's just little red mildly itchy bumps. It's still gross, though, as are those nasty little varmints (I'll read your thread anyway, CAS!).
I think I got bit by a couple after handling a wild bird for several minutes. It got itchy and I got a small bump and what looked a little like a trail of bites. Luckily, it wasn't a lot, that would be pretty bad.

From what I know, they can't really live off human blood for too long and they can't reproduce unless they have access to bird blood. But, they can be pretty annoying before they "die off".

I've heard of people who have had bird nests near vents in their homes getting their houses/apartments infested really bad after the birds were done with the nest. Someone said they can last up to 8 months without a bird host, but I'm not too sure about that.
Do chicken mites live off of wild birds, too? It's possible that they were red mites. I know with me, I never saw the actual mite.

I just remember doing research on northern fowl mites and hearing those horrible stories. I was doing research because I was handling and watching others handle wild birds and was wondering.

Of course, what you read on the internet can be wrong.
We had drought all summer after an unusually wet spring. Maybe they did get a boost from spring rains even though it got so dry after.

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