Red Mite Infestation in Large Flock

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by shaunta4401, Aug 8, 2016.

  1. shaunta4401

    shaunta4401 New Egg

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Seattle, WA
    I have a large flock of 130 layers, as we have a certified organic farm that produces eggs and broilers. We've never had an issue with red mites until now. Our huge mobile coop is full of them!! Yesterday we did the following:

    1. Removed all bedding and nesting boxes.
    2. Took a weed burner and torched every inch of the coop from top to bottom.
    3. Sprayed the coop from top to bottom with Organocide 3-in-1 garden spray. We ordered Elector PSP and it's coming in the mail. But we wanted to do something to start battling these critters.
    4. Once the coop was dry, we doused all the nesting boxes with DE and pine shavings.
    *We went out last night to check things out and it honestly looked like we didn't do anything! The critters were EVERYWHERE! So, we felt a little disappointed after all that work. However, when I examined the coop this morning I didn't see as many huge clumps or balls of them as there were before. However, I could see see small clusters under the roosts and in crevices.

    Once we receive the Elector spray we plan to do the following:
    1. Cleaning nesting boxes and bedding out
    2. pressure wash the coop from top the bottom
    3. use a torch from top to bottom
    4. spray elector spray from top to bottom
    5. DE top to bottom
    *All of this is very hard to do in a day because we have chickens that are trying to lay in the morning throughout the day. So, we start around 2pm and hope to get it done before the night. But we're also thinking of coming back out at night and spraying the chickens and roots and crevices again with the Elector spray. We realize that the mights are most active at night, so that would allow us to hit any we see coming out of the crevices on onto the birds. We also realize that we will have to repeat the spray and DE every 5-7 days as this is the hatch cycle of these buggers! I'm hoping after a a good month of staying on top of these critters we might win the battle.

    Has anyone battled red mites with this large of a flock? We are trying to figure out if there is anything else we can do? We rotate flocks every 2 years, but this is a new flock, so they'll be around for another 2 years. But of course we'll completely dismantle this coop when we're in between flocks. However, we can't do that right now as we have to keep the business going. We're getting over 100 eggs a day and we don't have another coop option for this many birds. We were thinking of culling the two roosters we have as we can tell they are being really targeted by the mites. We never see them dust bathe and we worry that they'll just keep reinfecting the girls and the coop.

    Any suggestions and advice would really be helpful. We realize that we may not get rid of every single one, but we don't want them infesting our coop or birds!!!
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2016
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    I'd not waste time power washing or torching again (and save the DE for when this infestation is gone and apply as a preventative), just soak everything with the Elector, getting in all the cracks and crevices.

    Repeat at night might be good, but not sure of precautions with live birds in place with that product, and would question the necessity if structure is fully soaked during day including cracks and crevices they are hiding in.
    You may see them swarm when doing the afternoon spraying.

    Will probably have to repeat at a mite egg hatching interval, don't know if this stuff kills eggs too.
    Do birds have other pests living on their bodies?
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. aSliceOfLife

    aSliceOfLife Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 28, 2007
    Escondido, CA
    For anyone who is looking to purchase the Elector PSP, I spent about 1.5 hours the other day looking for the best price and wanted to share with all of you. I saw lots of great reviews on it so I thought I would give it a try.

    Elector PSP can be used both in hen house and on the chickens. And there is no egg waiting period.

    You can get your best price on the Elector PSP through PBS Animal Health at www.pbsanimalhealth.com. They retail at $139.95 with free shipping and no sales tax, but if you use coupon code EMAIL2016P, you get $10 off bringing it to $129.95 for the 8 ounces. But those 8 ounces will go a really loooooong way, so it should work for many months (if not years) to come. Great for all those nasty flies buzzing around too! I've tried the DE, the Poultry Protector and Sevin but I'm thinking that this is my best bet. You know the saying, you get what you pay for. And the amount of active ingredient spinosad in the Elector is 44% compared to 0.5% in the Home Depot and Lowes brands of pest control, thus the higher pricetag.

    If you want more info on it, here it is:
    Here is the label directions: http://www.elanco.us/labels/Dairy/Elector_PSP.pdf
    more info: http://www.elanco.us/products-services/poultry/controlling-houseflies-darkling-beetles.aspx

    Just so you know, I am not affiliated with Elanco or have any stock in the Elector, I just love finding a good deal and love to share with others. Anywhere else you would be paying about $142 or more.
     
  4. shaunta4401

    shaunta4401 New Egg

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Seattle, WA
    Have you used Elector PSP before? Have you battled red mites before? How many chickens do you have?
     
  5. Bccblue88

    Bccblue88 Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 12, 2012
    Boise, Idaho
    Is there a similar product that is more readily available?
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2016
  6. aSliceOfLife

    aSliceOfLife Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 28, 2007
    Escondido, CA
    BccBlue88, if you know any other chicken owners in your area, you could see about sharing this item. The 8 ounces will go a really long way (you only need 3 ounces per 10 gallons) , so splitting it 2 or 4 ways will still work and you can save money. And yes, there are other things out there such as Atroban 11%, but seems like everyone is praising the glory of this chemical. You know the saying, you get what you pay for. Hope my suggestion helps!
     

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