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Permethrin treatment for perches/boxes?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Whistling Badger, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. Whistling Badger

    Whistling Badger Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 26, 2008
    a burrow in a pasture
    We're starting on our chicken coop today, and I have an idea. I've been reading about all the parasites that love to take up residence in a chicken house, and since our birds will be semi-free ranging, they'll probably come into contact with whatever the local meadowlarks, blackbirds, and sparrows have.

    So, how about treating the perches and nestboxes with permethrin? It's a naturally derived insecticide (or a synthetic version of same). It comes in a spray form to treat clothing (we've used it before traveling into malarial areas and it works). It kills ticks and mosquitoes on contact, so it seems like it would be effective in controlling lice, mites, and such in the chicken house. The sources I've read claim very low toxicity in birds, and essentially none once it cures.

    Anybody tried this? Thoughts?

  2. WikkitGateFarm

    WikkitGateFarm Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 9, 2008
    Pickaway County, Ohio
    Yes, it works. A few things to consider:

    Permethrins and their synthetics have a really poor residual, they break down in water and sunlight. You'll have to repeat barrier treatments every few weeks, and after every cleaning.

    It is a contact pesticide, so it's only going to work if the insects touch the walls or perches. That's not so good for lice that stay under the birds' feathers.

    The amount needed to kill mosquitoes is very low, but to do in a tick, the concentration, volume, or contact time will have to be much higher. Check the labels on barrier sprays to see the difference in application rates.

    Toxicity in birds is very low, but do you really want to have the birds sleeping on the stuff all the time?

    There are plenty of people here who shout about the benefits of DE, even going as far as to eat the stuff thinking it kills *internal* parasites! (I just try to avoid eating too much sewage.) In this application, letting the birds dust in DE would probably be cheaper and at least as effective as any barrier treatment.
  3. Whistling Badger

    Whistling Badger Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 26, 2008
    a burrow in a pasture
    Interesting, Wikkit. Thanks. Just an idea I was kicking around.

    I also heard wood ashes for dusting are good for killing lice. We always have more wood ashes than we know what to do with, so maybe we'll try that. [​IMG]

    Last edited: Jun 26, 2008

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