Yes, we have many, many ticks in our coop. They are soft backed, fat, slow, 'poultry ticks'. When I cleaned out the bedding in the coop this morning, I was scooping out piles of them. Our coop is in one half of our shed, which we put up last year, so this infestation is recent. There was an old shed in the area that we burned down last year due to these ticks, but apparently some of them had already moved into the new shed by that point.
Has anyone else had this problem? How to proceed? I have some cedar oil - planning to strip down the shed this fall and totally saturate the inside and outside with cedar oil spray, but since that doesnt exactly kill ticks I'm sure they'll be back.
I'm not worried about them getting on us or the pets, but it bothers me that they're feeding on the chickens at night, and if we dont do something this is just going to snowball out of control.
Have you tried using a generous amount of USDA Food Grade DE to dust the chicken, nesting boxes and coop?
It can be used both internally and externally to rid the birds for parasites. Mixing 5% DE into their food regularly keeps the birds free of all intestinal parasites and worms and also provides hen with an excellent source of calcium for strong egg shells. Rubbing it well into their feathers down to the skin kills all external parasites such as fleas, ticks, and mites. The birds love to dust bathe in it. Make a dust box with DE and Play Sand mixed 50/50. Dusting all of the nest boxes keep them free from fleas and mites and encourage hens to lay there rather than driving them off the nests because of the pests that love the bedding. Sprinkling / dusting the rest of the coop and runs kill the parasitic pests and other like fire ants and slugs, but also kills fly maggots, and acts as a deodorizer, reducing chicken poo smells dramatically and reducing fly activity substantially. It also acts as a moisture absorbent to help keep things dry.
i'd love to see a photo of the piles of ticks. I've never seen that before.
Yes on the DE. These guys are in the walls, in every little crevice, piled up on top of each other in 4 or 5 layers..
http://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=56638-poultry-t... - scroll down for pictures. This is exactly what we have. According to this article, these ticks can result in many sad symptoms including depression - and its true! I'm totally depressed!
Here is what my friend recommends:
A product that is excellent for infestations is Adams Flea and Tick Dip. It is mixed as it says on the label in a 5 gal. bucket and you dip each bird up to the top of the neck. You can smell it on them for about a month (not objectional), so there is no need to re treat in 10 days as with most products. It also contains permethrin, so poultry dust may work almost as good. The good thing about the dip is that it can be sprayed over the whole coop, roosts, nests, run, and all.
I'll look into it - thanks!
You don't need to burn down the old coop, unless you want to, you can use the DE all over it and you will be amazed at how well it works on killing these ugly buggers. If you used it periodically in their dust bath spot and in the nest boxes and their coop it will keep them gone. Also, ticks live in our dirt so it is something many of us have to deal with just having dirt and no antique coop. We use DE on our dogs and in our garden and it has been a God send.
Right...I have been using DE, the problem is its hard to shove DE into the ceiling and framework of the coop. I'll let you know how it goes with the spray we're going to use this fall. Antique shed was burned to the ground long ago - there was no saving it.