Pests on the chickens

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by oliverj102, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. oliverj102

    oliverj102 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 14, 2014
    Hi there,

    Im not totally sure what im looking for so hoping someone can help me out.

    I cleaned out my chickens bedding yesterday and after taking the old bedding away found i was covered in these tiny bugs, less then 1mm across, oval shaped with i think 6 legs but so small its hard to see. they are tough little blighters and have to be caught between your nails to squish them at which point they pop.

    I suspected they where mites, so bought some red mite powder and have just dusted the entire house and then dust bombed the chickens in their coop so they have are stuck in the coop over night with it in the air.

    Any suggestions hat they might be? every time i go out i have to have a hot shower when i come in as im covered in them when i go near the coop.

    Are they mites, lice, ticks in larval state..... I cant win a war if i cant pick a weapon!

    Ive also made them a dust bath of wood ash as I read that can help them clean themselves too.

    I dust bombed them about 20 mins ago and about to go check on them, but on the off chance someone reads this before bed time, will they be ok being dust bombed over night?

    I cant think of any other way to stop them just fluffing off and dropping it all. Egg production has been down from 8 a day to 1 in the last week so its an issue now.

    additionally, can any pests they get transfer to humans, cats or dogs?
    thanks
     
  2. oliverj102

    oliverj102 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 14, 2014
    Update - I just checked on them and they seem find, all on perches going to sleep. But I took the opertunity to closely look at the coop and the entire wooden frame is covered in the tiny bugs, tens of thousands of them!

    any home remedy that can kill them? diluted bleach solution sprayed on and lock chickens out? i powdered the coop but would have thought it would have started to hurt them by now.. given 24 hours...
     
  3. Nineplus5

    Nineplus5 Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote: Whoa! That's way bad.
     
  4. oliverj102

    oliverj102 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I built the hen house myself, tearing the roof and then placing roofing felt on top. I pulled a bit back today to see if it was infested and there where just dead things. Could the roof be toxic to them?

    Additionally so far I've dusted the house and been pouring boiling water along the beams each morning and leaving it exposed, seems to have reduced their population.

    I'm thinking of using a pressure washer to blast them out of the corners and then use a steam cleaner to fry them all, anyone have any experience of this being effective? Considered fly spraying it as well and letting it air for a day before letting the girls back in.

    Not really sure what is toxic to them tho!
     
  5. Outpost JWB

    Outpost JWB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow! That sounds horrid! No idea of your location, but sounds like Northern Red Mites. Clean the coop out. Top to bottom. Bleach what you can. Let it dry. Wear a mask. Spread food grade diatomaceous earth around every crack, crevice, nest box, on the chickens, wherever you can. The DE must be kept dry to work though. So pouring boiling water may not be an option with this product.

    These mites are common here and it sounds like you have them bad. They mostly hide during the day and come out at night to suck the chickens blood. Good luck and keep us posted.
     
  6. oliverj102

    oliverj102 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm in the Scottish highlands, last month has been very mild and wet, prob optimal breaking conditions!

    I've ordered some mite powder and a spray, so I'll steam clean the coop, put new bedding in and cover it in mite powder then spray the chickens!
     
  7. AnnaGraceD

    AnnaGraceD Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 16, 2016
    They are probably lice. I dont know how many chickens you have I made a "chicken bath" that got rid of them in 2 treatments.

    In a large bowl I mixed this:
    2 cups apple cider vinegar
    3-4 sprigs of mint leaves
    a dash of mint Listerine
    2 tablespoons rubbing alcohol
    1/4 teaspoon 10% permethrin

    I soaked their whole body accept for their head in it for 2 minutes and them rinsed them really well (especially their vent) and dried them off. While they were drying I cleaned their entire coop and took everything that could be washed inside to scrub. Then I moved the chicken tractor they were in to a new spot and sprayed the whole coop with peppermint oil in rubbing alcohol. Once they were dry I dusted their whole body with DE. 6 days later i repeated it and have had no problems at all. Hope this helps!
     
  8. FarmerTony

    FarmerTony Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 7, 2016
    Giving them access to a good dust bath area helps with my free rangers. You can build them a sandbox and put in fine construction grade sand mixed with Diatomaceous Earth, but I just let them make their own spots in the dirt.
     
  9. Outpost JWB

    Outpost JWB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    :DIf you have access to wood ashes, this will help them to dust bathe in it. If it's lice, you probably wouldn't see them on the roost. If lice, you can see big clusters of white at the feather shaft. Either way, the methods you have mentioned should get rid of either.

    My Chickens also love to dust bathe under our pine trees. Maybe pine needles help as well. DH thinks the pine sap may help.....but the chickens would be sticky....:D
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Find out what they are before all the effort and dousing everything with chemicals that might not do any good.
    Did you do some googling to identify what they actually are?
     

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