Well, its my own stupid fault really.
I may have mentioned it, but I am always flooding mouse holes around the row of pens that holds my breeders. The mice come running out, the chickens grab them up and slap them around and eat them.
A couple of nights I sat outside with the BB gun and one of the pens open. ( The chickens were up on their roost, so there was no danger of hitting them) The heat lamps were on (red ones) so I could see fine to pop off some mice.
Mice have to be kept under control. They carry mites, lice, and their poop can make chickens sick.
One mite they carry is the Northern Fowl Mite. You can read about it HERE
I dusted Kuckoo and Coco the other day, even though I didnt see any mites. Yesterday, I went back to get them to clean their toenails, legs, face, and put mineral oil on those places. I looked Coco over carefully, again. This time I found them, around her vent. NOT like you see in the picture on that link, but they were there. I plucked all those feathers and I dusted her HEAVY all over.
So if she had them, he had them. And he did. I saw them, and was totally freaked out. I dusted him heavy too. I will have to do it again in seven days.
If they have them, everyone does. That means dusting over a hundred chickens this weekend. The goats and emus too. Then again next weekend. I have to dust all living quarters.
I was pretty distraught. Ticks, fleas, anything like this gives me the heebie jeebies. I was itching and freaking out so I went in and took a shower after I dusted the two.
So I had to cancel. I went over the internet hoping for a quick solution. I have heard that regular Dawn dish liquid will kill fleas on dogs and cats...thought about running to the store to get some (never use antibacterial, it may kill your bird, I read that last night too) and giving them a bath and then completely blow drying them for the morning. I couldnt find anything online that said the Dawn worked on this, so I relented.
I called the guy that is in charge of everything at the show. I told him my situation and that I didnt want to infect anyone elses birds with the mites so I was going to have to back out and I apologized profusely.
I was so distraught about the bugs, not being able to show, it never occured to me that I could still go to the show anyway.
He mentioned this, that I should still come anyway.
So its time for me to get some make up on and get ready to go. I still want to go see all the birds. I will take a few cages with me in case I see something I need to buy. ;)
Its not just mice that carry these bugs. Its all wild birds. Crows, song birds, squirrels, chipmunks, all these types and more. So lice and mites will eventually find your birds. Just the way it is. So dusting is a part of keeping chickens. It will be a lot of work, but I will get the job done. I always do.
See y'all on Monday. I am taking the camera with me to the show today..so maybe I will have some good pictures to share next week.
Everyone have a great weekend. :)