Other explanations for mite-like behavior?

akullian

Songster
May 9, 2021
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Colorado
I’m sort of at a loss. A few weeks ago I concluded my 5 month old silkies have mites or lice. Tho I could not find them when examining their skin/feathers, they’ve shown all the behaviors: excessive scratching, preening, reluctance to get into the coop at night, head shaking, ruffling feathers.
And *a lot* of intense dust baths.
I ruled out other illnesses by absence of other symptoms.
One of the three has also been losing feathers (not a lot but consistently I am finding newly shed/plucked feathers everyday from just the one). This same silkie has had a dirty vent in recent weeks, I considered vent gleet, but determined it to be constipation, especially considering the salt baths offered immediate relief ;)
But the dirty vent/constipation also left me thinking mites.

However, I have been following all the guidance for cleaning them and their coop and run, providing appropriate dust bathing, etc for a few weeks and I don’t see the behaviors changing. And still don’t see mites.

Is there anything else that could explain these same behaviors that I may be overlooking?
I don’t see anything else concerning (behavior, eating/drinking, illness, etc)

I’m new and still learning. Thank you!
 

akullian

Songster
May 9, 2021
180
155
101
Colorado
What have you treated them with so far, for the possible lice/mites?
I have used poultry dust applied as my research suggests twice, one week apart. And have religiously been cleaning and treating the coop and run area with cooking oil/dish soap/water solution. I’m about to hit the three week mark and don’t want to keep using the poultry dust considering the concerns and if it’s not helping.
thank you!!
 

Pyxis

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I have used poultry dust applied as my research suggests twice, one week apart. And have religiously been cleaning and treating the coop and run area with cooking oil/dish soap/water solution. I’m about to hit the three week mark and don’t want to keep using the poultry dust considering the concerns and if it’s not helping.
thank you!!

No worries, just wanted to make sure you weren't trying to use diatomaceous earth since that doesn't work. The poultry dust is probably Permethrin, right? If so, that should indeed have killed any lice/mites.
 

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