Invisible Bugs - Help!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Kuvasz, Nov 20, 2019.

  1. Kuvasz

    Kuvasz Songster

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    I've got a weird problem happening here in southwestern Va in my coop -- invisible bugs are jumping on me in my chicken coop! My face and hands, the part of my hair, around my ankles...anywhere there is bareskin, I'm itching when I leave the coop after feeding and watering. The chickens seem unaffected! I've searched them with a magnifying glass...no sign of mites. My veterinarian says there are microscopic varieties and suggested calling a county farm agent, which I plan to do. Fortunately the bugs seem to be easy to wash off, and are also repelled by spraying Deep Woods Off on my clothing before entering the coop, so I'm sure I'm dealing with bugs and not some psychosis. LOL! Also, fortunately, the bugs don't appear to live on me for long either....so clearly I'm not their main 'host' thank goodness. But I fear bringing them into my house, if I haven't already!

    The coop is a very old small barn, wooden, lots of cracks and crevices, lined with plastic and tarps to keep the drafts down ...tin roof. Dusting this with a little Sevin Dust isn't going to cut it.

    I would like to put off a bug bomb of permethrin which I've read can be used to kill mites around chicken coops although isn't the safest thing ever, yet must be used in bad infestations. (I believe these came from a wild bird nesting in the coop this summer). The bugs get way worse on warm humid rainy days! They seem to go away during freezing temps.

    Has anyone used a bug bomb safely? I realize I need to remove my chickens for hours during this treatment which isn't a problem. And will treat them with DE...and will avoid eating any eggs for at least 10 days as recommended.

    So far, I can't actually find a bomb to put off, only the concentrate and I really didn't want to be in there spraying this by hand, plus it needs to go up into the rafters, 12' high and I can't even reach that by hand.

    Please, I'm desperate for some viable suggestions that won't be dangererous, hurt me or my birds, but kill these invisible bugs. I've had chickens for 11 years now...this is a completely new phenomenon!! They have never had bugs that I was aware of ...very healthy, have dust bathing available. But my coop is infested with something for sure.
    Your experience with this would be most welcome, and words of encouragement. I'm losing it!!!
     
  2. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    Get a spray instead of a bomb as it very safe and effective when used as directed, in addition to affordable and easy to use. Also readily available in the US under many names and concentrations, usually in the equine section at farm/feed stores...
    [​IMG]
    Found in the equine section... this 32 oz, ready to use bottle lasted me 2+ year for my 2 large goats, 3 medium dogs, and 82+ chickens and ducks.. using as directed on coop floor, lay boxes, roost, also applied to the animals. No egg withdrawal but not safe for use in cats. My intended use was keeping mosquitoes off my goats and dogs but discovered its wide array and all for under $8! It will not for some things like depluming mites or scaly leg mite which may never come to the surface... but has worked great for on most everything else here. Some areas may already have a resistance, and that is why it's important to do a follow up treatment (depending on species being treated and according to directions) to catch any hatching residual generations before they also start laying. :thumbsup

    In my large flock treating birds after dark was the easiest using a head lamp. Everyone stayed in place and returned methodically by keeping it dark. To treat for things like lice, northern fowl mites, red mites (only feed but don't live on bird), part feathers down to skin.. just below the vent, under each wing pit, and to the nape of the neck giving a small spritz at each location. Socking is not needed. I do this even on very young chicks if needed using a cotton swab, as broody's are parasite magnets. I'm not sure if another application than the one I described will work better for the "no see um" you're describing.. make your best decision according to the label.

    My female dog is mosquito magnet. While it did not seem to stop them from biting, it did kill them and stop reproduction. So that's a win for me. :tongue (To them itchy creepies!) I feel victory every time I swat one. :yesss: And if I miss, I think... "I'll get you next time!" :smack

    For what it's worth.. DE is not effective at my humid location. My friend uses it and her birds can not get fully rid of bugs (without using another product). It's also not welcome here after watching my birds shake out or even just bathing as it causes a serious plume of a dirt (or DE also) storm... and I just don't need the added (microscopic cutting shard) particles for my lungs, eyes, skin and such to contend with. It's a personal choice and it does work for some things, I'm sure!

    Some folk who live in freezing areas may prefer a dust application over wet.

    This was also the suggestion made to folks who were losing large portions of their flock to buffalo gnats this year. :hmm You might search that hear on BYC and see some of those discussions just in regards to flying things and treatment stuff that might include traps, etc. :confused:

    I feel an itch coming on. :oops: Better not be chicken math! :jumpy :p

    Hope this helps! :fl

    ETA: Some folks buy the concentrate and use a garden sprayer, those can reach pretty far for treating the premises I think.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2019
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  3. adickenscoop

    adickenscoop Songster

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  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    No see ums?
     
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  5. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    Scabies mites?
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    I seriously doubt it, they don't fly around outside.
     
  7. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    They didn't say they were flying around outside but in the Coop..:frow
    Am I missing something? :idunno
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Could be.

    I was under the impression they were landing on the OP's skin just being inside the coop, leading to the conclusion it was something airborne or 'flying'.
    Curious.... @Kuvasz
    Where in this world are you located?
    Climate, and time of year, is almost always a factor.
    Please add your general geographical location to your profile.
    It's easy to do, (laptop version shown), then it's always there!
    upload_2019-11-21_8-38-10.png
     
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  9. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    If your birds do have parasites, one of the best ways and time to check them over is at night after they roost. Some pest only come out at night to feed on the birds. I use a head lamp so I have my hands free and check the birds after they go to roost. Check under the wings too. It would be something you would want to treat ASAP and if you do find something, my recommendation would be treating with permethrin. There are other products that are effective too but very expensive. I have tried a lot of different things including DE which didn't work for me. I use permethrin. It works. If you have a TSC they carry the permethrin powder, premixed spray bottles and the concentrate. No egg withdrawal period. I also put some of the dust in the nest boxes. It does take a few weekly thoroughly spraying everywhere, on and under the roosts, every crack and crevice in the coop to completely eradicate them. Permethrin does not kill the pests eggs so repeated spraying or dusting is necessary. Good luck...
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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  10. Kuvasz

    Kuvasz Songster

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    Thanks for the link. but none of that is what I'm talking about...truly these are literally invisible bugs. My vet says there is a microscopic form of mites. I've ordered a pyrethrin fogger and plan to lock the birds outside away from the coop and put it off in the morning, and not let them back in til the next day, plus dust them with mite killer. We'll see. Honestly these bugs are bothering me more than the chickens from what i can tell!
     
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