Lice, or Mites, or Fleas- Oh my!


In the Brooder
8 Years
May 16, 2011
I'm new to taking care of chickens! Yesterday I was holding one (6 months old) for only about 1 minute, and when I put her down there was a cluster of about 20 light brown bugs on the sleeve of my jacket. After I stopped screaming, and the heebie-jeebies subsided, I went out and purchased Poultry Dust (Permethrin) for Mites and Lice.

Since I've never done anything like this I'm wondering if there are any tips on the best way to apply the powder. I read in another forum that some people use "powder puffs" made of nylons, or to put the hen in a bag with her head sticking out and shake?! Seems a little messy for me..

If I have 4 hens, and only one appears to have the lice, I should probably still apply it to the others, and since I'm going to powder near the vent, I assume that I should throw away any eggs laid over the next couple days? I dont know!! I also was thinking I would rake and get rid of all the straw in the covered section of the coop, and start with new. Any of these ideas justified?

Any suggestions for a rookie would be sincerely appreciated.

Welcome to the wonderful world of chickens
and to BYC

How I dust is to hold the bird and sprinkle a good amount on the neck and back area then work into the plumage with your fingers. The flip the bird upside down (while still holding) Try to let the bird relax and not flap so much or you will be getting dusted too. Sprinkle dust on the under side and UNDER WINGS. Work into the plumage with your fingers. This way you are saving the best spot for last.. THE REAR END. That is the most savory place for most parasites and this way you have blocked them off from running to the head for sanctuary. Hold the chicken so that it's rear is upward and sprinkle a hefty amount of duck.. then, you guessed it
work into plumage. Place bird on the ground gently so that it will ruffle a bit and head off. Good Luck
You can definitely do that. I have just found that it either got wet or the chickens dusted it up in the air and blew away or some didn't dust... It has just worked better for me doing it.. manually

If you have a covered area and maybe build a box that is deep enough to contain the dust and sand or whatever you mix it with, it would probably do the job.

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