My feed

to access all these features

Meet others keeping chickens on our Mumsnet Chicken forum.

Chicken keepers

red mites...

14 replies

purplewednesday · 09/10/2010 15:25

I thought I'd got rid of the buggers but have just put my hand in the nest box to check for eggs and got a handful of mites instead.Sad

I so wish i'd shelled out and got a plastic chicken house.

I am just here after sympathy from those who know what it's like!

OP posts:
ChickensHaveNoEyebrows · 09/10/2010 15:28

Eek! I have a wooden coop, but have not yet had the dreaded mite. What are you using? I know people who swear by poultry shield, then using a blow torch on all the nooks and crannies, followed by greasing all joints with vaseline.

purplewednesday · 09/10/2010 15:53

I use Total Mite Kill by Netex. I absolutely saturated the coop for 2 weeks on the trot and then haven't seen any mites for 3 weeks. I have heard a lot about poultry shield but haven't been able to find it anywhere.

I have friends with wooden coops who have not had mites in years so it just must be bad luck.

OP posts:
RedWellyYellowWelly · 09/10/2010 15:59

Empty out the hen house and give it a thorough clean.
Make up a solution of dettol (about 1 - 2 parts dettol to 8 parts water)

Spray every nook and cranny of the hen house, make sure you remove perches etc if you can.

If it is a serious infestation, you will need to repeat this every 2-3 days for 2 weeks (they have the same life cycle as head lice, so you need to re-treat to catch emerging baby mites)

There is an ingredient in dettol that dizzolves the mites waxy outer layer, and kills them. (and dettol is much, much cheaper than most of the other products available :) ) Jeyes fluid does the same thing, but is poisonous to chickens, so needs plenty of time to dry.

We clean out every week and give a spray round of dettol every week, and (touch wood) haven't had an outbreak since.

Next spring, you could always contact a local fencer and get some proper creosote to paint the house with - inside and out, red mites hate creosote!

FWIW, plastic houses can still get red mite infestations, under the perches and in the nest boxes.

ChickensHaveNoEyebrows · 09/10/2010 16:00

I know you can buy poultry shield on ebay. Nightmare for you. You can buy these gas bomb thingees as a pest killer. Can't remember what they're called, though

RedWellyYellowWelly · 09/10/2010 16:01

Meant to say - whatever you use, you will need to re-treat regularly to catch new baby mites

purplewednesday · 09/10/2010 16:05

Thanks redwelly for the tip about dettol - I've not heard that one before. Do you use it neat or diluted?

OP posts:
purplewednesday · 09/10/2010 16:06

sorry have just read your post properly!

OP posts:
RedWellyYellowWelly · 09/10/2010 16:08

If you haven't got dettol at hand, diluted washing up liquid can hold them at bay - again, something about dizzolving their waxy outer layer!

ilovehens · 09/10/2010 21:03

I clean my wooden coop with a hand held steam cleaner and that seems to keep them at bay. The steam gets into all the nooks and crannies.

MonsterseyeofNewtPunch · 10/10/2010 13:21

I use diatoms on my hens& in coop once a month and use shredded paper as it is 'dusty' and they don't like dust :)

marge2 · 11/10/2010 14:32

The lady we bought our chickens from swears by first cleaning out with Poultry Shield and when it's dry sprinkling Diatom about. We did this at the weekend. Will let you know if they come back.

They really are itchy little buggers aren;t they? Got them all in my hair after sticking my head in the coop to clean it out. Thought i'd got a sudden violent bout of nits, but thankfully a shower drowned all the mites.

MonsterseyeofNewtPunch · 13/10/2010 02:48

Fingers crossed Marge2

meltedmarsbars · 14/10/2010 22:09

Eeek Marge2, you're making me itch!

monkeybikelady · 19/10/2010 15:45

Hello, I am new to this forum. Just want to share that there is an excellent homeopathic remedy that will clear red mite once and for all, and will be kinder to the chickens. The remedy is Trombidium (made from the red mite), and I use it in a high potency, 1M or 10M, and just add a few drops to a bottle of water and spray well and leave it to dry. Homeopathy is totally safe, gentle and effective. Any homeopathic Pharmacy will post - either Helios or Ainsworths, or Galens in Dorset. Best wishes, Grace

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.