What are these pests?? LOTS OF PICS!

alb9202

In the Brooder
6 Years
Jan 30, 2013
92
2
48
Maine
Been battling lice this spring, have found a small amount of nits, still (much less than before) but what is this? Black marks in waddles and combs and hair loss on the head? 3 treatments of ivermectin (spaced apart of course), sevin dust, sheep/goat spray. What the heck am i missing here? I cant find bugs on their heads. I only see them itching their heads :idunno

pictures coming shortly...
 
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chickenboy190

Crowing
6 Years
May 31, 2013
21,985
122
346
Ohio
A lot of my lower pecking order chickens have this. I"m pretty they are just getting pecked from the other ones.This might not be your case though. Hope you find out what it is!
 
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alb9202

In the Brooder
6 Years
Jan 30, 2013
92
2
48
Maine
I assumed it was a lower pecking order issue, however now there are 3 hens with hair loss on their heads. When I shut them up this evening several were scratching their heads, by their ears. I sure do hope that you are right.
 

ivan3

spurredon
12 Years
Jan 27, 2007
4,511
208
291
BOCOMO
First things first, ID whatever it is (if it is an is...): What are your hens using for dustbathing? Wood ashes, ADE (amorphous diatomaceous earth) and fine sand in a big plastic storage container would do. Checking them after they go to roost (with magnifying headgear/lamp might reveal some nocturnal feeders). Did you change out all bedding, etc. after previous treatments? Could be some pecking/partial molts (if you can find no other skin irritation - redness/bite marks -, or the `bugs'.
 

alb9202

In the Brooder
6 Years
Jan 30, 2013
92
2
48
Maine
They have a dust bathing boxnin the coop with pellet stove ash, play sand and DE,,. They have less dust and a cleaner coop than my house! I have sprayed walls with goat&sheep spray and ensure extra feathers are out of the coop and changed bedding weekly. I spotted about 3 birds going to town on their heads, itching the tops no their heads, again..It is so hard to inspect chickens heads, however there were 2 birds with small amount of nits on their bums, that is all I could find. I treated their heads under wings, bums, with neem oil mixed with olive oil and dabbed with q-tips. Paying special attention to the neck head area. Sprayed what nits were found with goat&sheep spray. I also rolled on hydrated lime with water on the walls of the coop and cracks... The only thing left could be the problem is ear mites? I have no idea how to check their ears for mites or signs and symptoms or if chickens even get them.. I have 12 chicks in the brooder and determined to get these issues taken care of before moving the babies to the coop. Thanks for the help!
 
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ivan3

spurredon
12 Years
Jan 27, 2007
4,511
208
291
BOCOMO
Thanks for the useful, pertinent info. They are easier to handle/exam after dark. If I `louped' them and found nothing obvious on skin in the area they are scratching losing feathers - I'd probably pull out one of the feathers on the margin of the feather loss on one of the hens and examine shaft/barbules closely for any infestation. You might consider trying Adams tick and flea spray - squirt some on an old leather glove, put on glove and run glove over heads/necks of chickens, this allows for a small amount to be applied and to observe for any decrease in scratching behavior following the application. If there is any way to grab one up while the scratching behavior is most frequent, do so: one person hold the girl and the other push up the feathers on neck/head and use a good magnifier to examine, closely.
 
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