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Thread: Red (Black) mites

  1. #9
    Suechooks's Avatar
    Suechooks is offline Early Fruiter
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizzylemon View Post
    The cold has gone, or at least appears to as her breathing is back to normal.

    I checked again tonight on the mites and they're swarming again. The mite powder I put in the bottom of the coop seems to be doing a big fat nothing. The girls are seriously suffering - 1 egg today and I'm worried they're going to die before I on top of the situation

    OHs going to track some poultry shield down for me. I was going to order some off the web, but decided to get it from our local WGC cos it'd be the same timing with post etc but am worried they wont have any!!
    Another forum I read (Poultrychat) seems to be very keen on FicamW. I've not tried it but they all go on about it.
    I use Poultry Shield and Diatom and have just used creosote substitute on an empty hut. I found the worst area was inside the nest boxes - they were plywood cubes and the mites were gathering in the angles. I've chucked them out and replaced with mop buckets and cardboard boxes. Also give the hens garlic powder every day.
    I'm not sure what the red mite powder does but I've been putting it on the hens at bedtime just in case.
    I also spray the undersides of perches with Poultry shield most mornings when I poop pick.
    This is the first time in 5 years I've had any sign of mites. I think the dry hot spell (remember that!!!) caused a population explosion.
    Hope it all works for you.
    Last edited by Suechooks; 31-07-2009 at 07:30 AM.

  2. #10
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    You'll get there Lizzy!{{x}}If you were a carp chook carer you'd not be bothering to try & get rid of them,so please stop beating yourself up about them!
    My theory is that mites are still a bit of a taboo subject,none of us like to admit we've got/had a problem with them and therefore as newbie chook owners we're not totally aware of just how nasty they are because nobody really chats about them.
    I swear our coop had got really bad,being an old walk in shed we had the joy of a mite shower to let us know how bad the situation was!
    We were in a lucky situation that we'd just got another shed all prepared for the expected chicks to move into...plans changed & Andi knocked up a smaller broody type coop for the Mums & chicks & the other girls moved into the new shed whilst we tackled the mite one.I sprayed it three days on the trot,left the door wide open to let some sun in,then painted it with watered down emulsion.The day they were due to move back in I noticed they were back,I assume this was the hatchings of eggs that the poultry shield doesn't kill.One more spray & I can say we are on top of the problem.We still come across the odd few & I don't think we'll ever be totally free of them.As I spot them I zap them & fortnightly I spray the whole coop.
    You're possibly in for a couple of weeks of despair that they won't ever be gone...at one point I was in tears telling Andi the only answer was to torch the coop & get a new one!But they're not immortal,the Poultry Shield WILL get the buggars!
    (BTW...the only reason we did the painting was because we hadn't been as good as you filling in all the cracks & crevices,just in case I'd put you in panic mode that you need to do the same!)
    Good Luck.xxx
    the fates lead him who will;him who won't they drag.

    Happiness is not having what you want,but wanting what you have.xx

  3. #11
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    Someone from the vine gave me this tip as we can't get anything for red mite out here, it's a banned substance.

    Spray the inside of the coop with hot vinegar, don't get it on your hands though 'cos it don't half burn. After this if the infestation is bad I go over all the cracks with a hot air gun and fry the b******s. Don't do it the other way gound or all you will do is blow them around. Just lately as a control, I have sprayed the house with Raid for crawling insects. Don't know if this is a recommended treatment but the chooks seem none the worse for it. I don't do it very often though and I let the house air throughly before letting the chooks back in

    Best of luck
    Gardening requires a lot of water - most of it in the form of perspiration. Lou Erickson, critic and poet

  4. #12
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    I also understand that if you can keep your chooks out of the house for a few nights (maybe in a cardboard box in a quite place), it breaks the feeding cycle, and that will put a dent in the mite population and give you chance to really clean the house out.

  5. #13
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    Thanks everyone, can't tell you how much I appreciate your words of encouragement and advice. It's strangely comforting to know we're in it together and I've taken all the advice on board. I suspect the mite subject might be slightly taboo too, but boy, it would have been great to know a lot more about them before they appeared in their squillions - I would have sprayed every 6 months just as a precaution had I known.

    Also, I think it might be a good idea to stop calling them red mites for newbies. I now know I saw mites as long ago as 3 months ago but because they were the odd 1 or 2, and not red, I ignored them (I was more concerned about the red mites on our patio which turned out to be harmless red brick mites )

    Anyway OH got me some generic Mite killer stuff yesterday and I have to say, after 2 sprays yesterday there are a lot of dead bodies this morning. OH did the whole coop yesterday PM and then I did just the outside at dusk after the girls had gone to bed.

    SueC: I think I'll fill the corners of their box. The mites didn't appear to be very interested in the box but better safe than sorry me thinks. And I'll be investing in some garlic powder too.

    andi&di: LOL setting fire to the coop. And I thought I was extreme!!! You're right though, they're not immortal creatures and I will get them! Mmmmmwwahwahwaaaaah (evil laugh just in case you're wondering). Just reading about your mite shower made me want to vomit. I have an almost phobia about bugs that suck blood (ticks in particular make my skin crawl) so I really feel for you

    roitelet: Poor you for not having being able to get hold the chemicals. Makes me wonder about the chemicals even more than normal. Have to say though, I think turning a blow torch on them is quite appealing if not very Karmic - tehehe.

    Becki: I did wonder about removing the girls, if only to give them a break from the mites so if I'm still not happy, I'll do that next week once I've got me hands on a nice big box.

    Finally: Do I fill the outside cracks and crevices?

    OH says no - I'm not sure. I know I won't get all the hiding places but surely making it as hard as possible is a good idea?

  6. #14
    RichmondHens is offline Early Fruiter
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    You can put creosote substitute in the outside cracks and crevices - it WILL kill them, believe me. We have had 100% success with it killing red mite. We use it inside too, but have to keep the birds out until dry and not fumey, so only possible if you have alternative housing.

  7. #15
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    When you say creosote substitute, which type do you mean exactly? Perhaps a PM with the details if you're not aloud to say it out loud

    I was settling for being pleased if I got the mite population down to 3 or 4 sqillion. All dead will be fab. X

  8. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizzylemon View Post
    When you say creosote substitute, which type do you mean exactly? Perhaps a PM with the details if you're not aloud to say it out loud

    I was settling for being pleased if I got the mite population down to 3 or 4 sqillion. All dead will be fab. X
    I got some stuff called Creosote Substitute! Probably builders merchants rather than DIY stores. "proper" creosote is no longer available - carcinogenic. DIY places seemed to have something that smelled much like creosote but not sure if its as good as the C-Subs. With the Poultry Shield and Diatom then followed up by stripping the hut out and creosoting it then left empty for a week now to dry out and de-fume there don't seem to be any lurking about. I did however pour the stuff in the bigger gaps! Read somewhere that someone had creosoted the inside of the hut and the beggars all came out thro the cracks to the outside waving white flags! Good luck!

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