feather mites?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by HeatherFeather, Jan 5, 2010.

  1. HeatherFeather

    HeatherFeather Songster

    Feb 16, 2009
    Severn Bridge, ON
    I was examining one of my girls today, and I parted her feathers in an area where they were a little sparse; she has just come out of molt. I saw some short feathers with a whitish buildup all over them, they were crusty looking. Then I saw a little ivory mite looking thing crawl past.

    Feather mites?

    They have their own dust holes outside in the run in the covered area...should i make an indoor box and fill it with DE? We're organic here so won't be using any chems. How do I keep them from laying in the dust bath I make them?

    Its very very cold here....-15C today, so I want to make sure that the whole flock doesn't get them, if they do already. I dusted the girl in question with DE but can't dust the rest of the flock as they aren't as tame as her.
  2. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

    Jan 27, 2007
    Check your `find' against the shots here: http://ohioline.osu.edu/vme-fact/0018.html


    Check this recent thread as the lice/mite prevention/suppression/extermination regimens are pretty much the same. https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=279477&p=1

    not the above:

    Intermittents: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/PS/PS03600.pdf

    common: http://ohioline.osu.edu/vme-fact/0019.html

    news is that most won't want to feed off of you.

    Good luck, stay warm!

    (tea tree oil is `organic'? but can only be used on roosts, not directly on birds - another member will probably know of something effective). DE mixed with `clean' wood ashes and fine sand is a good bet
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  3. HeatherFeather

    HeatherFeather Songster

    Feb 16, 2009
    Severn Bridge, ON
    Ugh-definately lice.

    Seems better than if it were mites though.

    I have to examine all the birds tonight for something else, so looks like I'll be doing a body check whilst I'm at it. Then reading up on poultry lice all night!

  4. mom'sfolly

    mom'sfolly Crowing

    Feb 15, 2007
    Austin area, Texas
    Pymethrin is organic, and is the main ingredient in poultry dust. It is made from chrysanthmum flowers. I'm sure I've spelled things wrong, but the info is good. [​IMG]
  5. kayri

    kayri Songster

    Jul 6, 2007
    pyrethins are considered OK for organic farms (I believe) and has a relatively low toxicity to chickens (and to you). A flea bath (with pyrethirns) should get rid of lice, but if one has them, I bet the rest do also. If they aren't very tame, if will be hard to give them all a bath, but it is a sure-fire way to get rid of those lice without stuff like ivermectin.

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