I thought it would be good to get ideas on preventing mites, lice ext. Please share your input on what works for you and what does not. I know this is about mites but if you have information on other external parasites prevention please post. Mites are tiny crawling external parasites that can become a problem for your chickens if they are given the opportunity move in to your coop and take up residence on your flock. They are spread by bringing infected birds into your flock, by wild birds, rodents, or by carrying them in on your shoes or clothing. They are more prevalent and active in warm weather and during the summer, although some types do live in cold climates as well. While their life cycle is only 5-7 days, each mite can lay more than 100,000 eggs during that time, so treatment must be repeated and ongoing to completely eradicate them. Normally, the dust baths that chickens take in a dry patch of dirt or sand, preferably enhanced with some wood ash and food-grade diatomaceous earth, will keep them mite-free, but often in extremely hot and humid areas where mite populations flourish or during long periods of wet weather when the chickens might not have the opportunity to bathe, the mites will get the upper hand. I put food-grade diatomaceous earth under the bedding for my ducks and geese. Sprinkling food-grade Diatomaceous Earth onto the floor of the coop and nesting boxes and rubbing it into the roosts is another option that can be used in conjunction with the oil spray and reapplied as needed. Spraying your coop and roosts for several days in a row with a mixture of 2 cups water, 1 cup cooking oil and 1 tablespoon dish washing liquid will help kill off the mites that leave the hens by suffocating them. Shake well before using because the mixture will separate. The coop should be sprayed at least once or twice a week for several weeks in conjunction with treating your hens directly. Wormwood (artemesia) can help repel mites. Tie bouquets of wormwood to the roosts, make sachets for your nesting boxes or hang cuttings in your coop as an ongoing mite repellent. Natural Mite Garlic Juice Spray 10 ounces of water 1 ounce of garlic juice (you can find it here) 1 teaspoon (total) any combination of these essential oils - bay, cinnamon, clove, coriander, lavender, spearmint and/or thyme Mix in a spray bottle and spray hens bi-weekly as a preventative or every other day for two to three weeks in the case of an infestation. Concentrate around the vent and under the wings. Dusting your chickens with DE after spraying them is also recommended, taking care not to get the dust in their (or your) eyes or lungs. Treating your coop and chickens simultaneously is necessary to completely get rid of the mites. Adding fresh garlic cloves to the water or garlic powder to their feed is an effective preventative since parasites don't seem to like the taste of the blood of chickens that have garlic added to their diet. The garlic will also help boost your hens' immune systems.