is this lice or Mites on Silkie ?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Avent, Feb 2, 2015.

  1. Avent

    Avent Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 31, 2015
    Hi, I have a 2 year old silkie hen who is losing a lot of feathers. I lost one about a week ago. She looked healthy except for losing feathers. After doing a lot of research after I lost her I decided it may have been lice or mites. I scrubbed down the coop and treated it with DE which I learned about after doing the research. I dusted my hen with it too. After a week she was still losing a lot of feathers so I dusted her with Sevin 5%. She is still losing feathers and i fear she's getting worse. I'm attaching two photos i took of her this evening to see if anyone can help diagnose her. Any info will be greatly appreciated.

    thanks




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  2. TOOCLOSE

    TOOCLOSE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I personally would give her a bath with Johnson and Johnson baby shampoo! Then pour a low dose mixture of permethrin/water over her. Blow dry her and see if that doesn't solve the problem.

    I don't use powders of any sort. The chickens will inhale it!

    I'd be guessing, but I'd say she has something irrating her skin or it's a bug of some kind and she's trying to shed her body of them.

    TC
     
  3. Avent

    Avent Out Of The Brooder

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    thanks so much for the advice. I'll try bathing her tomorrow. I'm assuming if I get her absolutely dry she'll be safe from the cold tomorrow night. It will be in the high 30's. I have a heat lamp for her so her coop is warm.

    I guess it would be a good idea to take out the hay in her coop to get rid of any of the DE dust to make sure she doesn't inhale any.
     
  4. TOOCLOSE

    TOOCLOSE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know you lost a silkie hen - I'm sorry! Was it due to the same thing this silkie has?
    Just be sure she's good and dry before putting her back out in the cold!
    A red chill chaser heat bulb is what I use around here. It's only used for when our
    kids are outside though. (I'm part of the House Chicken Thread :))
    I really hope the bath and permethrin clears her problem up!
    Wild birds bring in the little stinging biting problems! I hate those! If you have
    wild birds nesting in your area and can get to their nests after the babies leave?
    Spray the nests with permethrin to kill off the bugs. Then trash it. Then spray the area
    again. They are in the thousands!

    TC
     
  5. Avent

    Avent Out Of The Brooder

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    thanks so much for your post. Yes, my other hen seems to have died from what this hen is going through so now i'm frantic trying to find out how to help her. I have a red heat lamp for them now but i'm still very cautious of bathing her right now due to the weather. If i do i'm thinking i'll be keeping her in the house for at least a night.
     
  6. Michael Apple

    Michael Apple Overrun With Chickens

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    I wouldn't recommend bathing/dipping the bird unless it is Summertime. You run the risk of stressing the bird and chilling it. Here's how mites/lice are remedied effectively:
    http://www.wvu.edu/~agexten/poultry/pfs23.pdf
    Don't confuse moulting birds with those birds affected by ectoparasites. The best time to examine birds is at night when roosting. If one bird has them, all need to be treated. When mites/lice are seen, it is necessary to not only treat birds, but clean out all litter from floor/nests, remove all dust, and treat the entire interior of housing with an emulsified concentrate that will penetrate all cracks crevices. There are a number of treatments which are dual purpose, meaning they can be used on birds as well as premises. Ravap EC, Atroban 11%, Permectrin II are a few examples. Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2015
  7. Avent

    Avent Out Of The Brooder

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    thanks so much Michael. I think I'll take your advice on the bathing.....i'm too worried about her getting chilled and sick.....and thanks for the advice on the mites and lice. I haven't seen any crawling around even when going outside and night to try and 'catch them' while they're out. I'm just not sure if that's what she actually has or it's something else.
     
  8. TOOCLOSE

    TOOCLOSE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not real good at suggesting things for ppl that have the outdoor chickens. Although I've had my fair share! And what I suggested was exactly what I would have done. I would have brought the hen inside until she was dry!

    There are multiple things and ways to cure a chicken's problems! I love this place for being here.

    TC
     
  9. Avent

    Avent Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks TC, all the suggestions have been very helpful!
     
  10. Michael Apple

    Michael Apple Overrun With Chickens

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    You're welcome. Over some years of preparing for war against these nasty parasites, I've had them beat for many adhering to a routine. I clean out coops every 3-4 months, disinfect with Oxine or Biophene, let dry, then apply Rabon, permethrin, or malathion to all roosts, nest boxes, walls, floors, cracks, and crevices. Let that dry, then add new shavings. Follow all mixing/safety instructions for use, and use a yard/garden sprayer for good penetration during application. Preventing wild birds from being in contact with your birds is beneficial too. You likely range your birds, so you can't prevent contact 100%, but you can keep them out of their yard, troughs, and housing. Letting them have access to a dusting area helps. Loose, dry soil in an area will be their preferred area to dust themselves. Under trees works well, sheltered from hawks and hot sun in Summer. Pay attention to scales on legs so they appear tight against the surface, with no chafed/raised scales. Preventing scaly leg mites ( Cnemidocoptes mutans ) is a bit more tricky since they are microscopic and burrow into skin under scales.
    http://parasitipedia.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2540&Itemid=2816
    You will need to treat roosts more often (about once a month or depending on residual of product used).
    You can brush on an oil mix according to label instructions or spray down roosts when chickens are outside ranging. Mineral oil is cheap and penetrates wood well enough. Keeping some Nustock topical, and a box of disposable nitrile gloves on hand will assist in keeping legs in good condition if you suspect scaly leg mites. Massage it into legs and toes, going against the grain of the scales when applying it:
    http://www.nustock.com/
    Keep the tube in a warm place and shake it up well before applying. Older birds tend to be more susceptible to scaly leg mites than young birds. I hope that helps.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2015

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