With her sitting in the nest box all the time she became the perfect victim for the dreaded red mite. I am so disappointed that we have got red mite, as it sounds very difficult to eradicate. Red mite hide in the daytime and only come out at night to feed on the hens and irritate them. They have a new hatching cycle of 7 days.
|These aren't my red mites, I got the photo from the internet|
Click photo for the source
I bought the natural powder that stops the mites from hatching and I bought a safe cleaning fluid that dilutes in water and gave the whole house a thorough cleaning out. I cleaned it every fifth day to try to get each new hatching generation, but they still seemed to be there. So I completely emptied the house and gave it the most thorough scrub down of it's life and left it open all day to dry out.
Matilda being ousted for an entire day and not being able to sit seems to have cured her of her broodiness at last!
But she is now not at the top of the pecking order, she is second at the moment, but our Scots Dumpy is so eager to be top that I don't know how long Matilda's kindly ways will keep her soldier liker determination at bay.
I have been reading a few blogs that recommend herbs inside the nest box to deter insects, but they don't mention red mite. Has anybody had success with any products to get rid of red mite?