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 Post subject: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 7:32 pm 
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Showy Hen
Showy Hen

Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 8:06 pm
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
Hi,

We've taken our neighbours 10 chickens for 6 weeks whilst they go on holiday however it looks like they have scaly leg mites! I'm not sure how serious it is and how high the risk of them spreading is? Our chickens have a large area to themselves and are not generally in close proximity. Their chickens also sleep on the ground and ours up on perches.

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 8:31 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Unfortunately it is very contagious. I'd treat them all, even though that's a bit of a pain. You don't want your birds to get it so I'd treat them as well. Spot on treatments like moxidectin plus are very effective treatments. Or you can get the kind of moxidectin that goes in the drinking water, which is easest for a larger group: http://www.geckodan.com/product/moxi-plus-wormer/

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 11:18 pm 
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Showy Hen
Showy Hen

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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
I knew you'd say that!
I've separated them. I tried scrubbing their legs gently in soapy water and applying liberal amounts of Vaseline as a start. The scales were just falling of their poor feet. They look very miserable. We also noticed that they were very gaunt looking and a few have severe lice. We checked out own hens and they also have minor lice which I will also treat. What a disaster! I feel bad about telling the owners as I'm sure they have no idea that they are sick. I made the decision to put one bird down. I'm dubious if 5 of the others will make it. But the rest look like they have no mites at all.
I'm trying to get in touch with the owner as I feel it might be best for the birds to end their lives now. I don't see how they could recover as it is the severity of the attached image.


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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:14 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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I suspect that they will also have a heavy worm burden. They sound very neglected. Unless they are elderly I would treat them with Moxidectin Plus. They will have a good chance of recovery but that may depend on whether their owners will then commit to better husbandry.
Your birds will definitely need treatment.
Benen would you please put that pic in the gallery with the other scaly leg photos. It is certainly an extreme example.


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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:00 am 
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Showy Hen
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
Thank-you, Sue. I've asked my wife to pick up exactly that on the way home tonight as I finish too late to shop. Do you advise keeping them separated or shall I just put them all back together if they are all going to be treated?

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:14 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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Unless any of them need extra care (and just how far will you go for some one elses neglected chooks?) leave them all together (less stress for them) once they are treated.
The scales are unlikely to fall off until the next moult but a scrub and some more Vaseline in a few days will improve the appearance. The reason that they don't lie flat is because they get packed with the excreta from the mites. Poor things - it's a wonder that they can still walk.
Check around their vents and either pluck or cut off the lice eggs with a pair of nail scissors.
I was given some Croads which were not much better. Some tlc and a few weeks later, they were different birds.


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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:16 am 
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Showy Hen
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
As for the photo, I can't take credit. I found it online as the closest example of the severity of these chickens.

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:18 am 
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Showy Hen
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
My wife really wants to take them back and look after them from there but I figured if we're treating the lot then they should be fine. I'm also surprised they can still walk as their legs are so swollen with the mites that they look freakish. They're very slow to move around. It's heart breaking.

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:11 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Gawd, they sound really bad. Agree with Sue that if you treat them it's fine to keep them at your place. Ridding them of lice and worms and feeding them properly will do wonders for them. Don't put any more down just yet. See how they respond to your care.

Hopefully the owners are merely ignorant but still well meaning and will care for the birds properly once you explain their needs.

Good on you for helping out these poor birds.

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:18 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
Thanks, Rach. The one we decided to put down was by far much worse. Just skin and bones, watery poo, very bad lice. I'm feeling more positive about the recovery of the remaining 10 :-)

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 5:15 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
Local stores don't stock moxidectin, however our local store has ivermectin? Which is dosed with 2 drops behind the ears of each bird and treats all 3 conditions.

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 6:14 pm 
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Old Mother Goose
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Apparently the mectins are best absorbed by adipose (fatty) tissue. When I used the 'spot ons' I would put it onto the bare skin inside the top of the thigh.


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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 7:26 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Ivermectin will treat the mites and some types of worm (not tapeworm). I've put it on the skin at the back of the base of the neck.

Agree with not trying to put it behind the ears. That'd be really tricky! Anywhere on the body (not head) will be fine :)

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:10 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Location: One Tree Hill, South Australia
Well we've dosed all birds including our ducks with a few drops on the skin at the base of the neck. I feel the risk to our own flock is low but best to take precautions.
I will re-dose the neighbours flock next weekend and probably apply the Vaseline again. I'd love to give them back as new healthy birds in 6 weeks.

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 Post subject: Re: Scaly Leg Mites
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:39 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Ducks are at lower risk for mites if they have access to bathing water but it won't hurt to have done them too. I find that spot ons reduce waterproofing of the feathers around the immediate area for a time. It's not a problem, but you might observe this in your birds.

I'd say there is no doubt that these birds will be in much better shape pretty soon. As Sue said the legs can take a while to look better as the scales shed slowly, but the birds will be feeling so much better within a few days.

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