Because mites are nocturnal hiding in crevices in the coop, emerging only at night to feed,
they can be difficult to detect. Some owners like to go out at night with a torch whilst
others, who value their sleep, attach drinking straws to
the perches. The mites crawl into the straws after
feeding and then the owners can come out in the
mornings and blow on the straws revealing the mites
inside. Note: Don’t suck on the straws. At chicken vet
we are pleased to offer our chicken vet mite traps
which are match box sized plastic boxes which are
attached to the perch. As with the straws the mites
crawl inside after feeding. Inside the traps are sheets
of sticky paper to trap the mites thus allowing their
numbers to be counted - this allows us to see whether
or not mite treatments are effective.
If low numbers of mites are detected then the shed
should be cleaned out, washed and scrubbed with
washing up liquid, left to dry then poultry shield should
be applied to the shed to destroy the mites. Next the
bedding should be replaced and mite powder liberally
added to the nests and dust baths. Some owners get a
cat litter tray and add child’s play sand mixed with mite
powder thus allowing the birds to get mite powder
through their feathers when dust bathing.
Where larger burdens are present then more severe chemicals can be applied to the
environment, but these products must be used with care. It is also possible to get
treatments to be applied to your birds however these are not licensed for your birds and
need to be discussed with your vet. Where unlicensed products are used, the eggs must
not be eaten for a minimum of seven days after the most recent treatment.
Remember treating red mite is a war and not a
battle and requires regular checking. For more
information see the chicken vet website.
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Mite traps