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My chickens have worms, mites, and lice, how do I treat them?

My chickens have worms, mites, and lice, how do I treat them? Is this a question you have ever been faced with? Well worry not, it’s a question we’ve been asked before and we’re here to help you treat your feathered friends.

First things first, know that treatment as soon as possible is important to minimize the potential damage that these parasites are doing to your poultry.

There are two types of parasites that can affect your chickens, these are internal and external. Both can cause great damage if left unchecked.

Internal Parasites

Internal parasites feed off vitamins and minerals found inside the chicken’s body. Draining them of these vital components can lead the poultry to having digestive problems and a range of deficiencies.

The most common internal parasites found in poultry are:


These live inside your chicken’s intestinal tract, causing blockages, malnutrition, and potential death. To treat use a poultry wormer administered via their drinking water.


These worms live inside a chicken’s trachea. If an infestation occurs it could stop the chicken from eating or obstruct their airways. If this occurs be sure to treat all your poultry as soon as possible with a wormer syrup or alternative.

Cecal Worms

Cecal Worms are treated with a poultry wormer, while not overly dangerous to chickens, they can carry diseases that are harmful to other birds, such as turkeys.

Coccidia (Protozoa)

Fund in a chicken’s digestive tract, Coccidia can cause tissue damage as well as stop the chicken from being able to absorb vital nutrients. If you suspect your chicken is infected, quarantine them and treat them with Amprolium to help them build up immunity.

External Parasites

External parasites will feed on the chicken’s blood and skin follicles.

The most common external parasites found on poultry are:

Northern Fowl Mite

A tiny mite that feeds on blood. The best treatment would be to purchase a liquidator insecticide formulated especially for mites and lice. Be sure to treat your entire chicken coop as well, to prevent further spread.

Chicken Red Mite

These are hard to diagnose as these mites are tiny and only come out at nighttime to feed. Due to this fact, it is best to treat your chickens at nighttime when the mites are active. Spray a liquidator insecticide on their feathers, in the nesting boxes and the coop. This may take several attempts to take effect. Follow the instructions on the spray to get the best results.

Scaly Leg Mite

Are a mite that live beneath the scaly surface of a chicken’s feet. They eat away at the skin tissue, resulting in lameness and infections which can lead to death. Treatment consists of bathing your chicken’s feet with a liquid treatment every 3 days until symptoms cease and disinfect the coop to stop potential spread to your other hens.

Shaft Louse

Are louse that live and breed on the skin of a chicken, they are easy to see moving amongst the chicken’s feathers. Much like lice on dogs and humans they can be hard to treat. Use poultry dust for the best results, you will need to do several treatments to ensure success. At Capalaba Produce we recommend using David Grays Poultry Dust or Neempet Poultry Dustry.

Prevention is always better than cure, however, know that in this case, it may prove difficult.

Give your chickens a regular dose of poultry wormer, to keep on top of any internal parasites. Keep a clean coop and check often for signs of infestations. Chickens can make excellent backyard pets, so be sure to treat them as such. Keep an eye on them for any changes, and if you think their may be an issue, do your research and treat it early.

At Capalaba Produce we understand pets are part of the family and you want the very best for them. If you have any more questions on how to detect and treat worms, mites, and lice feel free to visit your local chicken experts at Capalaba Produce.

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