3 Easy Ways to Prevent Poultry Lice and Mites

Photo of Kassandra Smith

Kassandra Smith

Senior Editor • Backyard Chicken Coops

Last Updated: 21 July 2020

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Hello chicken keepers,

Keeping chooks doesn’t have to mean constantly battling fluffy bum bugs. With a few well timed prevention methods, and the right tools, your flock can stay pest free through any season. Have a peck at our top 3 ways to prevent poultry lice and mites.  

chicken using treadle feeder

  1. No wild birds allowed

Poultry lice and mites gatecrash the chicken coop party by hitching rides on uninvited wild birds. Keep those pigeons, sparrows and minor birds off the guest list by restricting access to your flock's chicken feed supply. Feeding your chickens in their covered run and removing access to feeders while your hens forage freely is ideal. An automatic free-range treadle feeder is best as it takes training to operate, an advantage your chickens will have over any feathered freeloaders.  

chicken dust bathing diatomaceous earth
  1. Poultry pixie dust and magic herbs

Cast a protective spell on your coop, run and dustbathing spots with a generous sprinkle of pest repellent, superfine grade Diatomaceous Earth. This useful product is a naturally derived powder that deters pests and parasites like lice, mites, worms and mosquitoes and is safe for your chickens to be around. No nasty chemicals needed.

You can also up the anti-pest ante by planting pest repellent shrubs and herbs around your chicken coop, chook run and backyard garden. Mint, lemon balm and lavender are easy to grow and deter pests while smelling and looking great in your chicken run landscaping. Have a peck at more info on herbs for hen health here.

chicken sitting in nesting box on hemp bedding
  1. Make the bed

There’s nothing mites and lice love more than settling into old coop and nesting box bedding, so make sure you change it regularly. If you notice a pest or two make themselves at home you’ll need to bin the old bedding. Don’t add it to your compost or you’ll just spread the pest slumber party around the backyard. We suggest Hemp Bedding for your backyard chicken coop and nesting boxes. It is pest repellent, sustainable and SUPER absorbent.  

When it comes to poultry pests and parasites, prevention really is better than a cure. Once an infestation takes hold you’ll have to work harder to kick your grubby gatecrashers out. So work smarter, not harder and turn the poultry party poopers back at the coop door. If you find yourself in the midst of a pest invasion our quick fire guide will help you out.

As chicken keepers, we like to think that we are doing the best we can for our girls and with their health, you should act on the side of prevention. When it comes to the dreaded mites and lice, vigilance is key. You need to look out for signs of discomfort and physical differences to your chickens. Infestations can be stressful to deal with especially without the correct information.

This is why I recommend the Goodnight Parasites course to all my readers! It is written by our friends over at Chickenpedia. In this extensive course, they have compiled everything you need to prevent mites and lice from harming your flock. You will also learn how to identify and effectively treat your chickens for parasites like an eggspert! Parasite-free chickens are happy chickens so don't wait about!

Check out the amazing courses by Chickenpedia today! 

After some more cheeky chook action? Of course you are! Join the flock on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest!

Feathers Forever,

Kassandra X