Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Readers Question: Chicken Lice
I am new at raising chickens we have 18 between 2 separate houses. The one has ten 20 week old hens, 1 red sex link that started laying in April and one rooster. Roughly 2 weeks ago our sex link started to sit so we assumed she was going broody, but had noticed white bugs crawling on her head…lice. We bathed the whole flock in an organic tea tree and peppermint, cleaned the coop, dusted with De. She seems to be doing better but still have not received an egg from her in these 2 weeks. Our other girls which are 6 red sex links in the other house started decreasing in egg production also within the past 2 weeks….we would get 6 a day….to gradually 5….then we went to three…. to two….one….then none for two days. These girls were treated the same within 1 day apart from the first one mentioned above other… and we just started getting 1-2 eggs a day a few days ago, still not at normal. Nothing has changed in diet (other than brand of feed) they were on pellets, but went to local feed store and got them a layer mash (which they had on one other occasion with no troubles) there are no predator issues, it has been hot but not to terrible, they have access to dust bathe. So I am stumped to what else might be going on. They all are eating/drinking well and look healthy and no missing feathers. Do you have any ideas or no how long it takes them to bounce back to laying after an infestation of lice ?