Lice on injured hen - treat now or when she's better?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by OzFarm, Aug 7, 2013.

  1. OzFarm

    OzFarm Hatching

    Aug 6, 2013
    We've just introduced a new hen to our flock and in the process she was severely pecked on the head and neck. She seems like she will be OK, but will need a few weeks to rehab before we do an even more gradual and supervised introduction. We feel so bad for her!

    She's got lots of bald patches on her head and neck now, which we've cleaned up as best we can, and tonight while feeding her we noticed some very small (like grain-of-sand sized) white bugs crawling on her head. After doing some research, my best guess is it's poultry lice. We've dealt with poultry lice before on one of our girls' vents, but never seen it on the head, and I'm reluctant to put powder on what is currently still a wet, swollen area of skin that includes an open wound. I've put some diatomaceous earth in the bedding in the dog crate we've got her in with the hope it'll keep things from getting too bad with the lice while she's healing.

    Any recommendations regarding when to begin treating for lice and how to treat it go about treating her?
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2013
  2. Judy

    Judy Crowing

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    You'll need to treat the whole flock and the coop now. If the sick one is isolated, you could wait a couple of days til the wounds are a bit more healed, but I wouldn't wait long. DE may reduce the population some but is not going to get rid of them.

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