Mites/lice or something biting me!!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by farmchic87, Sep 24, 2014.

  1. farmchic87

    farmchic87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 23, 2014
    Hi all

    I posted yesterday after joining this site about two chicks I'm rearing that the mother abandoned, when I first handled one of them something cteam coloured and small crawled off it and up my arm, I flicked it off and thought I would just treat them with the mite/lice powder.. They are doing great

    But ever since I am being bitten by something and have the constant crawling sensation on my skin, I woke up this morning with more bites on my wrist and legs :( I have been treating the chicks and their pen which I have to keep in my utility room and I looked under their wings in the dark last night with a torch and there was nothing obvious on them anymore so the treatment is working but does anyone know if these things can thrive in my house or on me??
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Standard chicken lice and mites do not infest people, no. One might jump on you as you described, but there would not be an infestation on you or in your home. What you describe sounds to me like dog or cat fleas, or at least, these are the only critters in that size range that ever infested my home and bit us -- which they did, requiring both insecticides and borax sprinkled all over the in the carpets, then sort of vacuumed up, to get rid of.
     
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

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    Sometimes you just get that creepy crawly feeling after you've seen lice on a chicken, but if you have actual bites, then maybe you should really look and see if they've gotten on you....Could they be in your bed or hair? I'm so sorry to ask this! I do think the lice that gets on people (like on kids at school) is different than the kind that gets on chickens. They can't survive long without a host to live on.... Could you just be having an allergic reaction to something, or could it be poison ivy? If the chicks were off with their mother, and they were maybe hiding in some poison ivy, you might have that. Especially if they're on your ankles and wrists, which could be areas exposed to that....
     
  4. johnderosa1

    johnderosa1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Unfortunately it sounds like your chicks may have northern fowl mites. While i am sure the other two posters are well meaning with their responses to you they are dead wrong regarding these pests. Northern fowl mites can live off their hosts for some time and will readily bite humans. There are some simple controls you can employ to get rid of them but you need to be consistent in applying them. The first thing i would do is get the chicks out of your house. Keep treating them and your other chickens to kill the mites on them... Permethrin, sevin etc. there are other methods to use if these dont work. I would treat the area around where you kept them thoroughly. You should wash your bedding and other linens with hot water and put them in the dryer several times a week until you dont get any more bites ... You should steam your couches , chairs if you have a steamer , otherwise vacuum several times a day until you dont get bitten. Vacuum your carpets thoroughly and frequently. Park your car out in the direct sun with the windows closed as often as you can... They cant handle temps much over 113... Yes they can easily infest your vehicles if you go directly from the coops to your vehicles. Finally, do the following to avoid bringing more into your house. Only visit the coop once per day, take your clothes off and bag them before entering the living space (i treated my cloths with permethrin periodically and or washed them immediately).... Next go directly into a shower and take a nice hot shower. If you indeed have northern fowl mites you will see a marked improvement pretty quickly. It is really critical to cover all bases for this to be effective. To be safe going forward , i would continue bagging/treating your clothes and showering immediately after visiting the coops. I have to enter one of my coops each day and do so in the morning before i shower. Works great that way. Anyway, i know it probably seems pretty bad right now but with a little effort and time you will get past this. Best of luck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2014
  5. farmchic87

    farmchic87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 23, 2014
    Thanks so much for your responses. Unfortunately I don't have anywhere else warm enough to keep them but my utility room (I live in n.ireland so it's autumn now) and we have no shed at our actual home. But the chicks seem mite free, I have checked them thoroughly and at night and I can't see anything on them or in the pen which is plastic, I have been treating them daily and cleaning the pen daily. I bug bombed the house today and washed all bedding and towels and will borrow a steamer tomorrow to do the furnishings and follow the advice with my clothing. Thanks a lot xx
     
  6. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just a thought, but are you sure that you waking up bit and seeing something on the chickens is related? Is it possible that you picked up something like fleas or bedbugs in house?


    If they were a fowl problem, I'd expect you to see them reoccurring on the birds.
     
  7. johnderosa1

    johnderosa1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    anything is possible but i had a similar problem and have never seen a mite on my birds... They did have pale combs and some had matted feathers but i never saw a mite... They are so small that they are easy to overlook especially with aging eyes... Assume they are mites, take the precautions and see what happens. My guess is that you will see results.
     
  8. farmchic87

    farmchic87 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 23, 2014
    When I first handled one of the chicks a cream coloured crawly left it and started crawling up my arm, I flicked it off as it was outside, but I'm assuming it came from the birds, my dog is flead every 4 weeks, I set off a bug bomb in the house today just incase anyways xx
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2014

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