1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

loads of tiny black bugs around the coop? anyone know what they are?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Beatrice Potter, Jun 2, 2016.

  1. Beatrice Potter

    Beatrice Potter New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Jun 2, 2016
    Surrey
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    this is just one of the millions that i have found on me,


    It would be really helpful if someone knew what these bugs are, im sure there not mites as if you squish them there is never any blood. They are really small grey bugs, they have a black ring around their body and seem to have pincer type things as you can see in the picture, i think there legs and antenna are red but it is very hard to see as they are so small.
    the first i saw of these bugs was about a month ago but i didnt think much of them as i only found a couple although i did wander what they where but i didnt find any more until now, when i went into the coop and i was only in there for five minutes to let my chickens out, top up there food and change their water before i found that my hand was covered in these bugs, so i instantly started looking for where they where coming from and it didnt take me long as they where over the door frame, up the walls and all along there perches, but when i looked in there hutch i found that we also have mites so yes i instantly got out the spray and powder and started cleaning out the coop... i was hoping this would have killed of these bugs at the same time but it obviously didnt as i was still finding them after i had sprayed it all and put the new clean bedding at that back down... i dont think they bit but they do make me ich and even just thinking about them makes me ich. i hope im not the only person that has had this and that someone has the answer as to what they are and how to get rid of them
     
  2. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

    4,840
    584
    268
    Dec 25, 2012
    I think your looking at Red mites which are gray until they get a blood meal and remember that they don't stay on the bird except when they are actively feeding or sucking blood.
     
  3. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,226
    284
    198
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    I have these little guys too. Do they survive out in the run as well? I'm trying to put together my treatment plan.
     
  4. 3feathers

    3feathers Out Of The Brooder

    58
    6
    31
    Jun 2, 2014
    I recently tested for mites to make sure I didn't have a problem. Put a white cloth near the bedding or nesting box. Look at it 24 hours later and you can get some idea of the level of infestation especially for red mites. A good magnifying glass and some detailed pictures from Google would help you confirm that is what it is. Mites was my first thought when I saw you pics. There are also different types of mites. Red mites hang in the bedding, Norther Fowl Mites are more often on the chicken. Scaly leg mites burrow under the leg scales and are very small. Mites are everywhere just like flees. The problem is when they become concentrated.
    The information when I was researching said that for one you see there are many you don't. Dust baths is one of the main ways a chicken defends against them. You can check the chickens as well. Best place is on the skin under the wing where it meets the body.
    Treatment varies on how you feel about the forms. One simple easy thing is to sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth in the nesting materials (after changing them) and dust bath areas. I waited till no chickens and used a straw and handful to dust the entire coop. Wood ash works as well. My chickens love my fire pit. Further is use of forms of insecticides.
    A word of warning, you can bring them inside and start an infestation in your living area. I would wash clothing and shower after contact.

    Your picture does look vaguely arachnid. How many legs are there?
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2016
  5. Beatrice Potter

    Beatrice Potter New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Jun 2, 2016
    Surrey
    hi thanks for your help, i went to Surrey poultry (this is where i got my chickens from) and brought a jar of them with me, they said it was definitely mites and they said that from seeing the amount that we had so easily managed to get in the jar and having sprayed the coop with two bottle of total mite kill that we where infested with them, they told us that the best thing to do since we had an infestation was to coat the coop with creosote. but i just want to warn you that if you are going to use this then your chickens will need to be out of the coop for 2 weeks after using this stuff and also that you will need a farm licence to be able to buy it as it was band about ten year ago because it is really strong stuff unlike creosote concentrate which can be brought by anyone (do not get the creosote concentrate if you are going to be using it for treating your coop for mites as it wont be strong enough)
    i was told by the people at Surrey poultry that this is the best thing to do when you have an infestation because the mites cannot survive if you treat the coop with it as they live in the cracks of the wood, meaning that you wont get mites again.

    i haven't actually tried the stuff yet so i cant say if it works although i am sure it will but i will post whether it works or not when i get around to doing it, which will be very soon as they have a five day cycle and i do not want to leave it for more more to come but i have already moved my chickens out of there coop so that they will be a lot more comfortable as i don't think it is fair t keep them in a coop infested with mites.

    i hope this helped anyone who was also wondering about what they were or what the best thing was to treat them with.
     
  6. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,226
    284
    198
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    How do you keep from accidentally transferring any to the other coop?

    I have them pretty bad I guess. No one is showing signs of illness, but I am left with them crawling on me after I go out in the coop.
     
  7. casportpony

    casportpony Poop Inspector General Premium Member

    53,709
    5,590
    618
    Jun 24, 2012
    Strip coops and spray with permethrin spray. Dust birds with permethrin dust.

    -Kathy
     
  8. 3feathers

    3feathers Out Of The Brooder

    58
    6
    31
    Jun 2, 2014
    Be very careful with creosote. It is what they soak rail road ties and telephone poles in that let them sit in and on the dirt for years without rotting or bugs. Very potent stuff and it will burn you if you get it on you. They may know what they are talking about but given the years it lasts I would question putting chickens back in after 2 weeks. The creosote will not have gone or degraded in that time. You would not want them walking on it. And it will smell strongly when fresh. Don't burn it or wood with it on it.
    I haven't tried it but if I was going to battle that level of mite I'm a big fan of bleach. Easy to get and bleach kills virtually everything, germs, bugs etc. It does not stay around long as the chlorine evaporates, even from a sealed jug. I would get a spray bottle of bleach and have at in cracks and other. The disadvantage is that it is a contact kill and won't stay around, but it will go into cracks and if it contacts the mite they will not survive it. I would doubt this will get rid of them all but it should set them back quickly, especially if they are as exposed as you said. And you can show them you're mite-y-er (ouch).
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by