Feather mites... help!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by mhhousley, Sep 29, 2011.

  1. mhhousley

    mhhousley Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2011
    LaFollette, TN
    What's left of my three grown chickens, 1 rooster, 2 hens after predators look terrible! I finally got my chicken yard built and have not lost any more hens but they are getting eaten alive by mites. I dust them they look better in a week or two, then again they are nearly without feathers again! The coop is due a cleaning, and last cleaning I did dust before laying down the litter but I just don't understand how they keep getting so infested with them.

    Other than dusting them every other week what should I do? How often should I have to dust them? What prevenative measures can I take (of course cleaning the coop)?

    I should note the chicken yard is fully grassed except for a few bare spots where they DO take dust baths.

    Any and all help would be greatly appreciated, my 2 hens look pitiful and I got 7 more chicks growing in my dining room so I want them to not incur the same problems in the future.

    (FYI - 1 Buff Orpington roo, 2 RIR hens, 4 buff orp chicks, 3 white leghorn chicks <all about 4 days old now>)
     
  2. SilkieBantams

    SilkieBantams Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Sevin dust should help though it needs to be sprinkled everywhere on their backs except their heads so it won't gent in their eyes
     
  3. welasharon

    welasharon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    I second the seven dust. Also you have to redust in 10 days to get the eggs that hatch. You need to dust the egg boxes and coop area too.
    sharon
     
  4. mhhousley

    mhhousley Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2011
    LaFollette, TN
    Thank you, it's time for a redust then. I noticed just only a few days that the one that had the worst amount of feathers gone has now already regrown feathers. Thanks again for everyone's replies.

    Edit: 7dust is what I am using.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2011
  5. mhhousley

    mhhousley Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2011
    LaFollette, TN
    I just got a 6-7 month old duck given to me. It appears to have dust mite symptoms as well. Do you dust them the same way?

    Also I found a good website about it but I just wanted to see what everyone else's idea was...

    Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    You must get rid of all the bedding IMO when dusting for mites.

    Here is my story:
    I have to dust every 4 months (twice, 10 days apart) to keep the mites away. Well, I waited 2 extra weeks this time- ha! I shouldn't have. I never ever see mites on the chickens, no matter how hard I look. But I find them on ME, biting ME. Then I ID them as the Northern Fowl Mite. This has happened before.

    So, I didn't get rid of the pine shavings I had JUST put into the coop after dusting this time (I normally just put down sweet PDZ and treat the whole floor like a poop board. But I was getting ready for winter and thought I would just put some shavings down. Well, I dusted 58 chickens and then the VERY NEXT DAY I woke up a couple of hours after going to bed and killed a mite that was chewing on me.

    So the next morning I took all the shavings out and went back to my old method of dusting the floor after scraping the poo off every morning.

    Voila!!! No more mites. They really LOVE that bedding.

    This mite had jumped on me just from closing the chickens up for the night. I hadn't even held one of them.
     
  7. mhhousley

    mhhousley Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2011
    LaFollette, TN
    Quote:So what kind of litter are you using? Pine shavings? Straw? I'm not sure if I understood exactly what you did.. you didn't clean the floor out before putting in new litter? And after you took the litter out and cleaned the floor that helped?

    The last time I cleaned my coop and it is in desperate need for it again, I scraped it clean the best I could then dusted everywhere on the floor before putting fresh new litter in.
    Is there any kind of LIQUID spray that you can spray and let dry around corners and cracks while the chickens are not in the coop? Perhaps spray around the coop as well. A regular insecticide might work you think?
     
  8. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Quote:So what kind of litter are you using? Pine shavings? Straw? I'm not sure if I understood exactly what you did.. you didn't clean the floor out before putting in new litter? And after you took the litter out and cleaned the floor that helped?

    The last time I cleaned my coop and it is in desperate need for it again, I scraped it clean the best I could then dusted everywhere on the floor before putting fresh new litter in.
    Is there any kind of LIQUID spray that you can spray and let dry around corners and cracks while the chickens are not in the coop? Perhaps spray around the coop as well. A regular insecticide might work you think?

    I was using no litter at all- just scraping the floor and sprinkling sweet PDZ or DE down every morning. Then I added pine shavings and within a couple of weeks had to throw away the shavings because of a mite problem. Now I am back to the old way. I hosed the whole thing down and bleached it all after this incident.

    They have a dilutable permethrin spray at the feed store and I have used it before. Also poultry protector if you are an organic type person. But I simply use diluted bleach myself these days. And I get the corners and walls, etc.

    IF you have a red mite problem (mites that live in the coop, not on the bird and only come out at night), I would just use permethrin and not mess around. I was only dealing with the N. Fowl mite, which lives on the chicken.

    I would stay away from the LIQUID sevin myself.
     

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