Grain Mites in feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by eggseroneous, Jun 7, 2010.

  1. eggseroneous

    eggseroneous Songster

    Apr 1, 2010
    South-Western PA
    Anyone have any experience with grain mites in feed? I just bought a bag of medicated chick crumbles, by Purina two days ago. Just a little while ago I went to top off the feed dishes and noticed what I thought was dust on the clip I use to keep the bag closed. I looked closer and the "dust" was moving--little white microscopic buggy things. Immediately I freaked out. DS looked it up online and found it is probably "Grain Mites". Does anyone know if I can put the bag of food in the freezer or will it affect the medication or the feed? I assume freezing will kill the little buggers? Now I am feeling itchy and really needing to take a shower! I also assume from what DS read, that they will not harm the chicks or people? I have 5 week olds and newly hatched chicks I just put in the brooder tonight.
    1 person likes this.
  2. sabong

    sabong In the Brooder

    Jun 5, 2010
    your babies will be fine [​IMG] can't be any worse than chicks being raised outdoors with their mother...think about all the mites, ants, and other bugs that get into their feed then [​IMG]...but i wouldn't worry about those little mites to much
  3. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Songster

    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    From what I've read, it's not that the bugs themselves are harmful to the chicks, but that the bugs eating the food decreases the nutritional content and that is what can be harmful to the chicks.
  4. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Crowing

    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    Put it in the freezer for a day or two and it will kill most of them
  5. eggseroneous

    eggseroneous Songster

    Apr 1, 2010
    South-Western PA
    Thank you SO MUCH for your replies, everyone! I feel better now. I put the bag in the freezer. I've had those pesky moths in parakeet and hamster food before and always would freeze the food,but this is a first for grain mites. i didn't know what they were. Ick. Now I can relax!
  6. BankerJohn

    BankerJohn Songster

    Apr 2, 2010
    Lecanto, Florida
    mix Diatomaceous Earth into the feed and the the DE will kill the mites in the feed. I wouldn't worry too much; there is protein in the bugs and chickens LOVE protein!
  7. eggseroneous

    eggseroneous Songster

    Apr 1, 2010
    South-Western PA
    Quote:Thanks! I Do plan to get DE soon! [​IMG]
  8. Jeremy Parker

    Jeremy Parker In the Brooder

    May 25, 2010
    MMMMMMMMMMMM added protien for the chicks [​IMG]

  9. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    No, a bag of bugs that have been living on the feed will have no more protein than the bag of feed. The only source for "bug protein" is whatever is in the feed.

    Some of the protein and other nutrients will be lost as they are used and contaminated by the bugs.

    Freezing used to be a common way of dealing with bugs in valuable display objects in a museum. I worked there briefly while in college. However, the bulk of the feed will slow down cooling and may make it harder to kill the bugs.

    I think using the freezer for storage may be a good idea with that bag.

    Last edited: Jun 9, 2010
  10. delawarechickmom

    delawarechickmom In the Brooder

    Jan 30, 2010
    Smyrna, DE
    Working for a pet supply that also sells "farm" feeds, make sure the date on the bag is current. The only time we ever deal with grain mite or moths is when the food is nearing the expiration date, or someone did not keep up with rotating the bags. You can see an increase in the mites in the warm weather, too. If the expiration date is okay, feeding isn't a problem. Freezing does not harm the food quality, just kills the bugs, but be careful when you put it outside, if it's too warm out, you can wind up with condensation on the food which can encourage mold growth.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: