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Thread: Red (Black) mites

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    lizzylemon's Avatar
    lizzylemon is offline Cropper
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    Default Red (Black) mites

    Hi everyone,

    Ever come across black mites? I was shutting the girls up last nite and noticed a few little black mites on the outside of the coop. Invested in some new batteries and had a check tonight and it seems that they're all over the inside walls too. I've squashed a few and no blood appears to be coming out of them but it's the start of the evening not the end so it doesn't mean very much.

    I'm going to clean the girls out tomorrow and frontline inside and outside of coop. I've also got a jetwash and some of that disenfectant thats very popular, for horses (can't remember) and comes in a sachet and will use that too.

    (I feel just awful leaving the girls in there over night with those gross mites but don't know what else to do)

    Also, one of my Brown hens has stopped laying and tonight I noticed she's got a runny / bubbley beak. They keep getting drenched and I think she has a cold, what can I do

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    RichmondHens is offline Early Fruiter
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    Red mite does not live outside the coop, only inside. It maybe something else not harmful to hens so inspect in the morning in the (hopefully) sunshine and see what's around. Red mite will be hiding tucked down in cracks and crevices within the house. Different insects have their own particular time of year for breeding, and at the moment (at least up here) it is earwig time. Every crevice in every coop, house etc is stuffed with earwigs! The hens go mad when I open up the doors as the earwigs fall into the coops etc and there is a scrum to gobble them all up.

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    RichmondHens is offline Early Fruiter
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    Sorry forgot to say, about the one with a cold, keep an eye on her, if she seems too poorly it's best to isolate if you have the facilities, but most birds get over a simple cold within 2 or 3 days.

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    Thanks RichmondHens, I keep an eye on the coldy hen and have another look tomorrow at the coop.

    They're tiny little dots of black and were cramming into the outside crevices but all over the internal walls. I've been using red mite & lousy powder on a regular basis so was very surprised to see them to be honest. Gross little yucks!

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    If it is mites,be prepared to do a few treatments before you get on top of the problem!
    After Marigold had been sat incubating eggs & mites for a while,our coop was horribly infested...so bad that some were on the outside of the coop,mainly trying to hide under the padlock latch.They only turn red after a meal.
    I was totally ashamed that we had them,but like you thought we'd taken enough preventative measures to avoid them...don't feel bad about them,apparently because of how warm it "was"()it's been a pretty bad year for them.I've come across loads of peeps that have had a problem this year.
    We used Poultry Shield & it probably took a good three sprays to get on top of them and you then need to repeat after three weeks to get rid of the newly hatched ones...I think it doesn't kill the eggs.
    Also if you smear the ends of the perches with vaseline they will stick to it on their nightly journey to the chooks!
    Try not to worry about tonight,they'll be fine,just think of how much they'll appreciate their hopefully itchy free coop tomorrow!
    Good Luck with them!xx
    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

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    Thanks for your kind words - it did make me a feel a bit better. Until I started tackling the wee monsters and then it was gross. The coop is really a rabbit hutch with perches stuck in for good measure (ebay purchase) and so it's not the best design I'm sure.

    I took perches out and masses of mites were there, a lot of them were bright red so obviously had eaten very recently. There's blood smears on the perches, door and walls where they've obviously been squashed by the hens.

    I'm so cross with my self for not noticing sooner. I did mention them to OH today but I can't blame him for not saying anything, how was he to know - he thought he was doing me a favour by closing them up at night and I clean them out once a week!!

    When I brought the hutch I went around the inside with wood filler and filled in as many cracks as possible but these little sh+ts ARE living outside (it's a sort of tounge and groove construction) in the big gaps and grooves and coming in via the pop hole and door to the chooks at night. I watched them doing it in broad day light today, so will also be filling holes on the outside too.

    Anyway, I've jet washed inside and out. Then scrub inside and out with a stiff brush and disenfectant. I haven't killed them all, but have dramtically reduced numbers so the chooks will be more comfortable till I get some Poultry Shield on Friday.

    Thanks again guys, appreciate your kind words
    Last edited by lizzylemon; 29-07-2009 at 07:38 PM.

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    frias is offline Cropper
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    Hope you get on top of this problem Lizzy. If nothing else it reminded me to go and check the coop late at night to look for these beasties.
    How's the one with a cold doing?

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    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!!

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