Mites: Do they live in the compost pile?

Hoytman

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Jun 26, 2018
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If you have discovered mites like I have and you clean out the shavings in the coop won't the mites continue to live in the compost pile?

I love the thought of composting the manure and shavings and I am doing so. However, I worry that the mites will not be killed through the winter or during hot cycles of the compost.

It seems like an impossible task to dust with DE 8 to 10 wheel barrow loads of manure and compost and have it work 100% ... even if you spread it out and do it. I certainly wouldn't want to spray it...least I don't think so.

How would some of you deal with this?
 

PirateGirl

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Mar 11, 2017
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If you have mites in your coop and remove infested bedding, from what I understand you need to completely dispose of this bedding and NOT add it to your compost pile as it will continue to harbor the mites/eggs and your infestation can return, particularly if your chickens live in close proximity to/or have access to your compost pile.
 

Hoytman

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I've always read where top gardeners say that a "hot"...key word..."hot compost pile" gets hot enough to destroy most anything bad inside of it including insects.
 

Chickassan

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May 23, 2017
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You can spray the pile with soapy water or pine oil to kill the living mites. Just choose a safe soap like dawn. The coming cold and the natural actions of the pile should kill any eggs. Try to keep the birds away from the pile in case you have any stragglers. Other option, get yourself a dust mask burn the infested litter and add the ashes to your compost.:)
 

aart

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If you have discovered mites like I have and you clean out the shavings in the coop won't the mites continue to live in the compost pile?
I would burn the shavings......
and 'soak' the coop with permethrin, meaning spray thoroughly especially the cracks and crevices
...why screw around?
DE is not going to kill the mites.
 

Shadrach

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Jul 31, 2018
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I would just worry about the mites in the coop and on your chickens.:)
Chickens pick up mites in all sorts of places and burning the coop bedding isn’t going to do a lot in the way of mite prevention; you’ll be burning your carpets and bed if you head down this route.:p
Keep the coop mite free and check your chickens for mites. Scaly leg mite and Northern Mite will live on the chickens while red mite while found on the chicken, live in the coop.
Scaly leg mite can be seen on a coop floor with a strong magnifying glass and is picked up by the chicken from the ground. Scaly leg mite will move from chicken to chicken so treating at first signs can save a lot of work later.
I haven’t seen Northern Mite here but I get Red Mite (translucent until fed) and Scaly Leg Mite.
DE won’t kill mites btw, Permethrin will.
 

PirateGirl

Chicken Lover, Duck Therapist
Mar 11, 2017
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I would just worry about the mites in the coop and on your chickens.:)
Chickens pick up mites in all sorts of places and burning the coop bedding isn’t going to do a lot in the way of mite prevention; you’ll be burning your carpets and bed if you head down this route.:p
Keep the coop mite free and check your chickens for mites. Scaly leg mite and Northern Mite will live on the chickens while red mite while found on the chicken, live in the coop.
Scaly leg mite can be seen on a coop floor with a strong magnifying glass and is picked up by the chicken from the ground. Scaly leg mite will move from chicken to chicken so treating at first signs can save a lot of work later.
I haven’t seen Northern Mite here but I get Red Mite (translucent until fed) and Scaly Leg Mite.
DE won’t kill mites btw, Permethrin will.

I don't think anyone is saying burn all the bedding as preventative, or on any sort of regular basis... it's just that if you already have a serious mite infestation, you will need to do at least one major coop clean out and the bedding from this one clean out should be disposed of/burned/etc. as it can be hosting millions of those little buggers. I did my clean out the day before trash day and sent the bedding away with the trash man!
 

Hoytman

Songster
Jun 26, 2018
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Don't think anyone suggested burning the coop or garage,
just the shavings/bedding instead of putting them in the compost.
That wasn't meant in a negative way. Just meant to imply...what do I do in the garage? Which the answer would be to clean it out also, and spray it too...I suppose.
 

MANNA-PRO

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