Signs of mites??

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by MagicA, Feb 25, 2017.

  1. MagicA

    MagicA Just Hatched

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    Feb 18, 2017
    Hi guys! We have a very puzzling situation with our six hens. Five of them started attacking Chippy! Even her best freind Trix. They have all been with each other for a little over a year now. She has also been pruning herself for a few seconds then shakes her head. She scratches at her head too. It is all very strange. Her ears look alright and so do her feathers bi
    Ut there is a strange spot. I'll try to get a pic up. We think it might be mites but we honestly don't know. [​IMG][​IMG]
    Most of her feathers cover up that spot but she has been pecking at. We have also seen her worry her neck feathers and her left wing feathers.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2017
  2. MagicA

    MagicA Just Hatched

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    Feb 18, 2017
    We have been researching things on mights but we do not know which one to use. We usually use wood ash but some people say give them some garlic or make a gatlic spray. Any suggestions?
     
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC. To treat for mites or lice, I would use either permetrhin 5 or 10% spray or the garden dust. Mites must be treated at 7 day intervals twice, and then inspect again to see if it needs repeating. The coop bedding must be removed and replaced, and the roosts, nests, and coop should be sprayed with 10% permethrin.
    I would continue to look for mites on the chickens. Some mites only come on the chickens at night, so use a flashlight to look for them. There are some very good links to read from TheChickenChick and UCDavis if you Google "mites in chickens."
    Feather mites could be a problem, but your chicken could also be getting feather-picked, especially if you are not seeing mites on any of the birds.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2017
  4. MagicA

    MagicA Just Hatched

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    Feb 18, 2017
    Thank you very much for the information![​IMG] This is our first time dealing with them and our books don't help much [​IMG]
     
  5. BBB Becky

    BBB Becky Out Of The Brooder

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    When you say garden dust...do you mean diatomaceous food grade earth?
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    No, I meant permethrin garden dust, available at feed stores and garden centers. DE may be useful in helping to prevent bugs, but permethrin is needed for an active infestation. Other in the past, including myself, have used Sevin dust, but it is not approved for poultry.

    Here are the better links to click on to see pictures of what to look for:
    http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/08/poultry-lice-and-mites-identification.html
    http://anrcatalog.ucanr.edu/pdf/8162.pdf
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
  7. peeper89

    peeper89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I saw dust in feed store call poultry and garden dust they had in chick sector of store I think u can use that
     
  8. rebrascora

    rebrascora Overrun With Chickens

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    Hi

    Firstly it is important to understand the difference between lice and mites and what to look for to confirm their presence before you start throwing chemicals at them.

    Red mites live in the cracks and crevices of the coop and crawl onto the chickens at night to suck their blood. Generally they become a problem in the warmer weather and are not an issue during the winter if you have a cold climate. To check for mites, use a soft brush to flick debris out of the crevices of the coop, particularly those nearest and under the roost, into a dustpan and then tip onto a piece of white card. If you have a mite infestation you will see small round red specks which when squashed with your finger nail, leave a smear of blood on the paper.

    Lice live on the chicken and are grey/light brown. They can be difficult to see but what is easier to notice is clumps of their grey eggs clustered at the base of the chicken's feather shafts particularly near the vent and under the wings. They live off skin and feather debris and are more of an irritant than a health risk. Usually chickens will dust bath to rid themselves of lice but if conditions are very wet or they don't have access to a dust bathing area, then an infestation can build up and make their lives uncomfortable. Usually lice will be found on a sick chicken that is not looking after herself and dust bathing properly.
    Lifting birds down off the roost at night and using a head torch to see, parting their feathers and checking the vent and under wing area is usually the best way to see them.

    Then there are scaly leg mites which obviously aren't the problem in this case.

    And depluming mites which I don't know a lot about as I've never had to deal with them. They are less common and I believe are not responsive to poultry dust and may need a systemic pesticide to treat.

    Chickens normally attack sick birds, rather than birds that are just suffering from mites or lice but as previously mentioned, sick birds will often have problems with lice as a result of being sick.

    I would thoroughly examine your hen for other signs of illness. Check that her crop is emptying overnight. Monitor food and water intake and her poop. Make sure there are no unusual swellings, particularly abdominal swelling and of course, check for lice and mites. Then decide which chemicals might be appropriate to use.

    That would be my advice

    Regards

    Barbara


    PS. Unnecessarily treating a sick chicken for lice can at the least result in extra stress and strain on it's system. I had a sick chicken die shortly after dusting her with poultry dust just because she was weak and the stress of it killed her. She did have lice but she didn't need manhandling like that when she was already so ill. I felt really bad and wouldn't want anyone else to experience that if it wasn't necessary.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
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  9. MagicA

    MagicA Just Hatched

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    Feb 18, 2017
    Thank you all so much! There are no signs of nits on her but we will check the coop and our hens tonight. We did a thourough scrubbing of it today with warm water so hopefully we can narrow this down!
     

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