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Thread: Mites?

  1. #1
    sherpa is offline Seedling
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    Default Mites?

    Hi there,

    wondering could you give us some more advise? From reading other posts I see the mention of mites. On cleaning our hen house yesterday we noticed an awful lot of red and black teeny crawling things? I presume these are mites? How does this effect a flock? What could we do to avoid them and what remedy? Any advise, tips or knowledge you'd like to share with us, would be great. Our girls seem in grand form, except for the mammy that died the other day on her eggs, but she was in a separate shed. Yet, there we some mites on the little chick, I helped hatch out.

  2. #2
    Nicos's Avatar
    Nicos is offline 'Allo 'Allo !
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    Oh dear...doesn't sound too good
    Red mites come out at night ( hiding in the cracks in the coop during the day) and are basically the chook's equivalent to vampires...they feed on their blood at night and end up killing the chooks.

    I've been very lucky so far in that only my cockerels pick up the odd black mite on their combs from the field- but never found anything (yet) in the coop.

    Looks like you need advice on what to do to eradicate the infestation.

    I use red mite powder as a preventative on my chooks every couple of weeks- just puff a bit under their feathers and in crooks and crannies of the coop. So far.... we've not had a problem.

  3. #3
    RichmondHens is offline Early Fruiter
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    Sounds like you have a heavy infestation, to actually be finding them on the hens. As Nicos says, they come out at night and suck the blood. If you found them on your newly hatched chick chances are your hen died because of a heavy infestation. I wonder if your hen house/shed has roofing felt on? This is red mite heaven and should NOT be used for hen housing. Thorough scrubbing out of every crevice with something like Poultry Shield is recommended, and I have found that using creosote substitute in all the crevices and under the perches kills them off. Using this however means you have to really have alternative accommodation for the hens so that the hen house can properly dry out and be aired of fumes. Continue to powder the hens regularly too.

  4. #4
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    MaureenHall is offline Early Fruiter
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    Once you've done all that, I'd feed the chooks garlic on a regular basis. Apparently the lice and mites don't like the taste of garlic in the blood and so leave the chooks alone. Just put a clove of garlic in their water, or feed a little crushed garlic or garlic powder in a mash or sprinkled on their pellets
    My girls found their way into my heart and now they nest there

  5. #5
    RichmondHens is offline Early Fruiter
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    I'd go with that theory Maureen. Does it taint the eggs though?

  6. #6
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    MaureenHall is offline Early Fruiter
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    no, not at all, I can't taste garlic in my cakes and none of my friends, neighbours, family or customers have ever mentioned it either. I wouldn't give the chooks too much cod liver oil though, don't want to risk fishy tasting eggs
    My girls found their way into my heart and now they nest there

  7. #7
    Hilary B's Avatar
    Hilary B is offline Mature Fruiter
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    If they are moving, and some are black, sounds more like rabbit fleas?
    Flowers come in too many colours to see the world in black-and-white.

  8. #8
    sherpa is offline Seedling
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    Yep, my hen house does have fely oooppps! we bought a bike shed from b and q and fitted nesting boxes, perches etc.. and put felt as we thought that was the best thing to water proofing. Dp is going to get corrigated iron at the weekend to make a new roof. I have rang the local chemist that does chicken stuff and she is ringing her supplier. It might be quicker that way than buying online. Can't seem to source anywhere else near me for poultry shield or the like. I have put garlic in their food for mean time and cleaning it out till get the proper stuff. My poor girls. I was trying to spot the guys on the perch I see only a few but these are black?

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