How I got rid of mites NATURALLY!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by chicknshrimp, Aug 9, 2014.

  1. chicknshrimp

    chicknshrimp Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 29, 2014
    We had never had mites before and I was looking for a healthy way to rid my poor broody and chicks and keep them from spreading to the rest of my flock. All my birds are organic, free-range layers and broilers so we really didn't want to use anything toxic on them.

    And I did it! [​IMG]

    We checked my broody at day 14 during the brood, not a bug to be found. Then on hatch day this is what we saw...


    She was completely infested and so were her chicks. You couldn't open her tractor without being completely covered yourself in mites... it was terrible! Mom had lost weight brooding and I was worried for her safety in her weak state.

    So off to Whole Foods I went to get peppermint oil, eucalyptus oil, tea tree oil, lavender oil, and neem oil. I made a spray out of this by mixing all of the oils (maybe 20 drops each? I just put a bunch in) with water in a spray bottle (shake well before spraying!). I removed all birds from the coop, hosed everything off, bagged the bedding, and then sprayed all surfaces with the oil spray. I kept the birds out all afternoon as it is pretty minty smelling. I replaced her nest box with a clean plastic dog crate so she wasn't in contact with any of the sprayed surfaces and gave her fresh shavings mixed with food grade diatomaceous earth. It is a tractor so I moved it to the other side of the yard.

    I made the baths others have talked about here using a 3 bath system, I didn't use an exact recipe but there is one somewhere here if you really want it, I couldn't find it again.
    Bath 1 - water, salt, and white vinegar. We used a 15 gallon bath with maybe 4 cups of salt and vinegar - ~5 minutes in the bath
    Bath 2 - 20 drops peppermint oil with Bronners peppermint soap (1/2 cup?) in 15 gallons of water - ~5 minutes in the bath
    Bath 3 - rinse bath, pure water - rinse until not soapy

    Each chicken (including the day old chicks which I was really nervous about) got a bath and blow dry

    A dust bath with dirt, sand, and food grade DE was placed in with the broody and the babies to use as needed

    We re-sprayed the tractor daily for 3 days and changed all bedding at the same time. We only did the bath system once.

    We had a pretty terrible infestation and I have not seen even one mite in over 3 wks (about a week after the bath). I have resprayed the coops every 2 wks since and continue with good general hygiene and check all birds daily. Even the day old chicks have done really well and are totally healthy. I was nervous treating them but the infestation was bad enough that I feared for the life of the broody and babies if I didn't.

    It can be done!!
  2. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

    Those are red mites and they live off of and away from the chicken. During the day they hide in the nooks, crannies, joints and cracks of your coop. Because they can hide and avoid you during the day and only come out after dark to get a blood meal little works to control them except for insecticides like Permethrin or Sevin. Not even a good dust bath will help much and a big infestation will quickly kill a sitting hen from anemia. Good luck.
    1 person likes this.

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