Chicken Mite

     The chicken mite, or poultry red mite, is a blood-feeding parasite of poultry. Mites spend most of their time off chickens in crack and crevice harborages, traveling at night to feed on birds. Chicken mites have become a huge problem in European commercial enriched cage and cage-free poultry. However, this pest has not been as problematic in the United States to date because commercial poultry facilities predominantly hold birds in wire cages that do not offer daytime harborages for the mites. However, the United States is transitioning from housing poultry in barren wire cages to keeping birds in group cages enriched with nesting boxes and perching structures, or even eliminating cages altogether in cage-free or free-range facilities. With these changes we expect chicken mites to become problematic in both commercial and backyard chicken flocks much as they are in Europe today.

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