- Red mites are a parasite that suck blood.
- They can cause irritation, loss of weight, loss of egg production and anaemia in poultry.
- The yellow hen flea lives in the under fluff of the bird’s feathers and can be seen when the feathers are lifted.
- Red mites are generally not found in the day time.
- These parasites like to feed on the bird’s blood at night.
- They can be seen underneath the roosting perches and in the cracks in the walls of the poultry hut and nest boxes.
- The best way to identify a red mite infestation is to examine the poultry hut at night.
- The presence of red mite can also be identified by a salt and pepper marking on the perches.
- Dust bathing is the best way for the birds to control mites and lice themselves, although if red mites are present, further treatment is necessary.
- Louse powder specially prescribed for red mite control can be used on the birds but make sure the manufacturer’s directions are carefully followed.
- If an outbreak occurs, treat the whole poultry hut by thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting.
- Paraffin or creosote sprayed onto the infected area of the hut are said to be effective in removing red mites from the housing.
If you keep hens or are interested in keeping hens then visit the farmingfriends hen forum for the latest chat about hens and then check out the books shown below about keeping hens which are informative and excellent for the beginner and a handy reference for the more experienced hens keeper.
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