Why an oral supplement is necessary to treat red mites in chickens
Red mites are very clever parasites that take advantage of the behavior of chickens. As soon as the chickens move to the perch, the red mites spring into action. During the day, the red mites are safely hidden in a crack that the chicken cannot reach, but where pesticides cannot reach either. This red mite behavior makes it a difficult problem to control. The only, really good way to deal with red mites is through the chicken and for that an internal (herbal) supplement is necessary.
Adult red mites can be reached through the blood of the chicken
Red mites do not drink the blood every day from the chicken, the adult red mite visits the chicken every 6 days to suck blood. This blood is necessary for red mites to survive and reproduce. Without blood, the red mites cannot reproduce and will die. Therefore, the chicken’s blood is the key to success!
Make blood indigestible to red mites
By giving an herbal supplement to chickens through food and/or drinking water, you ensure that the chicken’s blood becomes indigestible to red mites. Red mites become constipated from this blood and they cannot use the blood to reproduce. Because red mites cannot reproduce, the population will continue to decrease. Another advantage is that red mites panic after drinking this blood from the chicken. After about 5/6 days, the red mites actually want to go back to the chicken to drink blood, but the red mites are still full, causing them to panic. Because of the panic, the red mites start to show themselves during the day and then the chicken sees the red mites as well. The red mite then becomes a tasty snack for the chicken, which thus contributes to red mite control.
Through the feed or drinking water of chickens?
There are several internal products on the market that can be used for red mites in chickens. The first decision to make is already: do you choose a chemical or a natural one? We always prefer natural because:
- It is safe for humans and animals
- It is safe for the environment
- Eggs remain safe to eat
- No resistance is built up
In addition, you may choose to mix a supplement with the feed. These products contain herbs and essential oils (Echinacea, astragalus, uncaria, gentiane, thymus, citronellol, citronallal) that make the blood indigestible. It is a convenient application and can be used by any chicken keeper.
Another option is to add a supplement through the drinking water. Such a product is also herbal-based (echinacea, oregano, cynorrhodon, giseng) and causes the blood to become indigestible to red mites. Another benefit is that the product for through the drinking water also helps with recovery after a red mite infection.
Treating red mites requires more steps
Adding a supplement is only 1 step toward controlling red mites. With a supplement, you only tackle the stages that actually suck blood from the chicken. The larvae and newly hatched red mites cannot be reached by the chicken, they need to be reached by the environment. Therefore, clean the coop regularly with plenty of water, whitewash the walls, spray the coop with an environmental spray, use red mite blockers and bath sand. The more steps you take (for prevention), the more manageable red mites are. 100% eradication of red mites is impossible, neither through chemical products nor through natural means. Therefore, always hang a red mite test under the perch for a quick insight into how many red mites are in the coop.
- Check the red mite test 2x a week during the red mite peak season (April – September).
- Use removable red mite blockers, this makes it less easy for adult red mites to reach the chicken.
- If chickens are fed additional greens, scratch around and/or drink from puddles as well? Then apply both the supplement through the feed and also the supplement for through the drinking water. Otherwise, there is a chance that the dosage may not be high enough because of the extra food.
- You can use a weed burner to check all the cracks in the coop to destroy nests and eggs.
- Make a sand bath for chickens with a bath sand composed of uniform minerals. This sticks best between the feathers and therefore has the best effect. Chickens may also eat this mineral sand, which benefits egg shell quality.
- Do not apply just any chemical agent through chickens’ drinking water! This should only be done by a veterinarian because of the high risk of overdosing. These chemicals get into the eggs via the chicken with the risk of health risks.
Due to laws and regulations, we are not allowed to mention here which products are involved. For questions, please contact us anytime.