I'm adding new (old) chickens and I need some experts to check my info

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by MOregonChicken, Nov 11, 2013.

  1. MOregonChicken

    MOregonChicken New Egg

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    I have a "pet" chicken that I basically credit with saving my life since she kept me sane (that sounds like a contradiction, doesn't it? ;)) when I lost the use of both of my arms. (I can use them sometimes now, but rather not talk about that, just wanted to emphasize how important she is.)

    My top priority is keeping her in good health and not using anything dangerous with her. She seems to have an overly sensitive respritory tract so no DE or chemical dust would be used unless it was sure she'd die without it. She also preens like a madwoman so she WOULD injest anything placed on her body.

    Long story short but she was alone so I got some chicks to grow to be her flock. That worked until last week when they turned about 8-9 months and started kicking the crap out of her. My (city) yard isn't big enough. They're not "bad" birds but they're too big and could seriously hurt her if they keep it up so they're getting rehomed. -- I finally found some suitably sized, older, bantys today and brought them home. They came from a farm. I noticed two of the other chickens there had missing tail feathers but it's moulting time here for many and it didn't seem too off. I get the bantys home to their quarenteen pen and, bam, I'm being bitten by a small amber colored mite. I notice the light colored hen may not just be old and dusty but... a small patch of neck is missing feathers too and has scabby (black on red) skin there.

    I'm thinking could be some frost bite but most likely... she's stricken by several kinds of mites. I need to inspect them better tomorrow but want to buy the stuff while I'm out, which will be before I get a chance to take pics and really inspect them.

    I want to help these chickens, but I'm willing to be more aggressive and risky in their treatment than I would be for my dear one. I want to treat them for everything reasonable.

    Here's my plan, please help me if I'm leaving anything out:

    - Bath with dawn dish soap. (They will be QT'd in the unused garage with a heater so it should be fine)
    - lienseed oil on legs then petroleum jelly. (I'm 50/50 on the fence for leg mites on them)
    -toes trimmed, because their nails are gross-long too.
    -They're cochins so I might trim some of their feet feathers to help with treatment. Is this fine... or wrong?
    - ivmectin drop on neck after dried (.25cc?)
    -DE dust bath in bag with head out. (I have thyroid problems, toxins really get me, and high risk for cancer. I think I read sevin is a known carcinogen so the idea of being near it kind of gives me the creeps with my health situation)

    --★ but what else can I do to them be safe? I feel like this would cover the leg mites and maybe a lighter mite infestation... but I'm in a cold dry climate... I'm worried about the northern mites and I've read they're tough to treat.
    -clean their pen every 5 days, ditch bedding in plastic bag, in garbage, for haul away. Spray area outside of pen with a bleach solution and circle with DE.

    - repeat everything each week for 3 weeks at least.

    - step in bleach water, wash, and change clothes between areas.

    -spray poultry protector in other chicken's coop and pen, throw some mint and other mite repelling plants in there, let them out to dust bathe in the pure juniper tree needle dust I have in ample supply in my yard.

    --★ but what else can I do to help my original flock buffer incase I cross contaminate? Like I said, I'd like to avoid chemicals and respritory irritants for the original ones.

    Thank you so much! This forum has already been a huge help, I just want to do this as carefully as I can (without giving up on the older birds. They meant a lot to the people who had to give them up)
    -M
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    South Georgia
  3. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    I have a different question. I have pullets born July 1, are they too young to combine w/ my rooster of 3 years? I don't want them hurt inside.
     
  4. MOregonChicken

    MOregonChicken New Egg

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    EDIT: Oh no! How did this wind up in "Managing your Flock?" Apologies, I thought I put it in the pest forum where the other mite questions were. I was posting from my phone, my fingers might have hit the wrong link.

    ----

    Ugh. Even though I showered after my last contact with them I woke up at 6 am because I was being bitten. I could feel several microscopic bumps at the center of the itching, assumed they were mites, scratched them off and, after waking up for real, I see that I have the red marks from the bites. So gross. Washing EVERYTHING T_T

    So, about all the Pyrethroid (Permethrin) recommendations....

    I was always told not to use it in herp care, so I looked that up again... From http://www.anapsid.org/pyrethroids.html -which is basically like a reptile keeper's bible and is often applicable to birds because much of the literature sourced covers both in the studies:

    I will admit it's a really old page, so the most important thing for me is to know if any of this info been scientifically disproven since then? Because this basically reads like my health nightmare for more thyroid problems and high breast cancer risk. And while the compounds are only considered highly toxic to fish and insects, it seems they're considered still fairly/moderately toxic to birds: even in much of the standard government and university literature I'm fining links to on this site/forum. It seems to me more like they're saying it's fine if you don't care if the bird lives long enough to see the long term effects of damage to the endocrine system (thyroid/liver/hormone balance) and the nervous system. Which concerns me because I'm looking to do anything to help keep her healthy in the long term.

    From what I know about mites when it comes to reptiles (which are much like bird mites) it's just constant baths and treating their environment while they're not in it. The more I'm reading the more comfortable I am feeling with carbaryl/sevin over pyrethroids for the birds (for my own health too. I can not tell you how annoyingly sensitive I am. I can't even take 2mg of Valium for muscle spasms I get all the rare side effects of drugs. I've had food poisoning and pneumonia, I'd rather have either of those things again than take that "safe" drug again. So insanely awful.)

    Dose anyone here know of anyone who has been using either Sevin or Pyrethroids for a long time and how long their birds seem to live? (Barring accidents and predators, or course)

    I was also thinking of using the DE mainly just as a barrier for the floor on the outside of the pen, to keep the mite from being able to slog very far into other parts of the garage and house. I know all it really does is rip up the mites, so it's not really going to kill all of them if I dust them in a bag with it. Just figured it was the least likely thing to harm me and, I don't know, might help the other treatments hammer harder on the mites.

    I read on one of the papers that factory workers often put a ring of Vaseline around their arm when working with infected birds (to keep mites from crawling higher.) I think I might try that when handling them this afternoon.

    I'll also try to get pictures posted this afternoon.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2013
  5. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    I have a bunch of ameraucana pullets that hatched out July 1. I have n another hen house a very handsome ameraucana rooster about 3 yrs. Old. My question is , is it too early to put them n the hen house w/ him? I don't want him to injure them.
    Thanks
     
  6. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    Come on, someone has to know this answer..
     
  7. appps

    appps Overrun With Chickens

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    You would be better off starting your own thread as this one is really about mite control.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2013
  8. appps

    appps Overrun With Chickens

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    Australia
    Re the mites, we had a similar problem with little red mites a while back but the good news is they were pretty easy to get rid of. Darn they did make you itch though don't they!! Mornings were the worst! Luckily that went quickly too once they were treated. While treating I found it helped to go and have a shower immediately after handling and change clothes.

    What I did was apply ivermectin at 0.25ml per kg of body weight as directed by my vet at the base of the neck. There is a 14 day egg withholding period. We had to reapply a second time to catch any eggs that hadn't hatched and I think from memory that was after 10 days but dont quote me on that.

    The vet also said to buy some Fido's concentrated flea spray and dilute as per the instructions. That was then used to spray every timber surface in the cleaned out coop, especially the roosts because the mites actually hide on or in timber surfaces. Again we repeated it after 10-14 days or whatever was on the packet. We did NOT spray the birds with this, just the coop and I would do it early in the morning to give it a chance to air out after since you are concerned about her lungs. Not that its that bad but just since you have concerns.

    After about two days there were no more mites climbing on us as we collected the eggs and we haven't had them back since.

    Included in the birds I treated was a young silkie (so not a particularly hardy breed) and neither she, nor any of the others were affected in any adverse way by the treatment that I could see.

    Hope this may help as it doesn't include any of the powders that you are concerned about.

    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2013

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