Mites/ lice?? Oh my!

Patti G

Mar 20, 2012
I need a bit of information please.
I have 4 hens and noticed one with a 'dirty bottom' this morning, upon further examination she is bare under all that and has what looks like thick upside down q-tips on the feathers that are still attached!! Didn't see anything moving or any other evidence of pests. I removed her apron, clean the backside, cut away the stuck together feathers and applied 'poultry protector' (from tractor supply), I then inspected the other girls, they we're all bare under their backsides around the vent area. I sprayed down the coop with the same stuff after removing all the aprons for washing. Is this a lice/mite problem? They are all Buff Orpingtons about 1 year old.
Thanks in advance
Patti G


5 Years
Aug 11, 2014
Magnolia, Texas
Sounds like you found a wad of nits! Nits are the eggs at the base of the feather shafts.

Head to Lowes/Home Depot/your local garden/feed store and pick up some Sevin dust. It very gentle and doesn't bother the birds one bit.

Dust their vents, under their wings, and on their backs. Change the bedding and dust the coop and roost pole, too. Repeat in seven days. And again in seven days.

Three treatments, spaced seven days apart.

That should get the lice/mites, their nits, and any nits that may have hatched after the second treatment. :)

When was the last time you wormed your flock?

Hope that helps!

Edit to add: Sometimes, a chicken will start pulling out their own feathers in frustration. That might be what you're seeing, if you say she's "bald" back there.

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Patti G

Mar 20, 2012
Mrs. B

Thank You sooo much! I will head out tomorrow, I'm new to the chicken world, what do you recommend for the worming? and how often?
Again, thanks for the reply :)


Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Nov 27, 2008
Glen St Mary, Florida
For first time worming, I recommend Valbazen liquid cattle/sheep wormer for your 4 Buff Orpingtons. Use a syringe without a needle to administer the valbazen. Dosage is 1/2cc given orally undiluted to each chicken. Redose again in 10 days. You can have someone hold the hen for you while you preload your syringe. Then pull the hens wattles down firmly and her mouth will open. She may squirm and shake her head but dont let go of the wattles, she'll eventually tire. That's when you squirt the liquid wormer in her mouth, then IMMEDIATELY let go of the wattles so she can swallow the liquid on her own. If you dont let go of the wattles immediately, the liquid could go down her windpipe and she could aspirate. Then there would be big problems.
It's best to practice this procedure (a dry run) a few times until you get comfortable with actually doing it.
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