Poultry Lice Shame!! UK Product Help!


May 10, 2020
I recently (a couple of weeks ago) realised my chickens have lice!! Oh the shame!

I have one cockerel and 6 hens. The cockerel was persistently preening his rear and that is how I realised. I don’t know where they came from, but I am in the UK and our flock free range all day in the garden (with wild birds around). We recently introduced a new rescue hen but had quarantined her for a few days (yes I know this probably should have been more like a couple of weeks) and had inspected her and she seemed fine.

We picked up 2 products from a local farm supplier;
Barrier Red Mite Concentrate for the birds; and Nettex Total Mite Kill for the coop.
I will attach photos of both products. I have been using them for a couple of weeks, spraying the birds with Barrier diluted solution every couple of days. I have also bathed them in turn in a diluted Barrier solution when I have seen a cluster of lice on one of them. I did a deep clean of all our chicken areas (coop, spare coop and nest boxes), and have alternated the birds between the main and spare coop every 3 or 4 days, and cleaned them out completely and gave them a spray again. Oh and I have used DE under the pine shavings bedding when the coop was clean and dry.

However, I keep finding lice on the birds! I have to be honest, I don’t think there is many compared to some things I have seen online, it is just one or two, or a small cluster per bird - but that is one or two too many!

I have read that permethrin is the thing to use, but it is the Nettex coop product that has this ingredient. I understand that Barrier is all natural ingredients. My query, is the Nettex Total Mite Kill safe to spray on the birds themselves? Or any other thoughts or suggestions?


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My husband mixes his own permethrin spray for mites and such, and we have used it on several very sensitive species with no ill results. @mississippifarmboy Tagging him so he can elaborate more for you, because I am afraid I don’t know much about it other than it works well.
Oh brilliant thank you! So does that mean you can purchase permethrin neat? I will have to have a look, although I have already been search online for other products and struggling to find anything. I assume because most are not regulated for poultry use so maybe generic for other farmyard animals?
We are not in the UK, we are in the US, so you may not be able to get the same stuff we can. However, I know that permethrin is the same ingredient found in lice shampoo here, so you may be able to get that also?
Thank you both, so now I just need to find some permethrin.

How much would you use on chickens? Is it a spray under each wing type thing? Does it need to get on the skin?

I don’t suppose you have any idea what tetramethrin (0.023%w/w) is? Or benzalkonium chloride? And if they are safe on birds? They are the other ingredients in the Nettex Total Mite Kill, alongside permethrin 0.23%w/w - so I am wondering if I could use that on them?

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