Red Poultry Mite
Red poultry mites are found in coops throughout the world, with a prevalence rate between 60 to 100%.
They feed on blood of poultry animals at night and are disease vectors that hide during the day.
Their feeding duration is about 1-2 hours and leave their hosts when completed
Maturing in 1 week, they lay about 30 eggs each and population multiplies fast
They can endure 6 to 9 months without feeding
Direct Economic Impacts
Causes stres, aggressiveness and high mortality among animals
Drop in egg quality due to thin shell and spots
10-15% drop in egg production
Reduced feed efficiency up to 5.7%
Egg weight reduction by 2.2%
Accumulated losses of €0.60 per hen per year
A Potent Danger
Aside from direct losses incurred on poultry economics, red mites act as vectors for blood borne diseases such as :
Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis virus
Red poultry mite can feed from over 30 species of avians and can utilize mammals as host. They can infest humans, causing allergy and rashes on the skin.
Control of Acari
Red poultry mites, a type of acari, are infesting average 83% of layer coops in Europe, rising as high as 100% in some countries.
It is a well known fact that various medical chemicals used against acari are prone to resistance developing. With increasing the dosages, residues in meat and eggs have exceeded permissible limits. Of the coops where the chemicals were used, 91% had residues in broiler meat posing danger to human health.
Similarly, 20 million eggs have been discarded in a year in EU countries due to residues. Red poultry mites, in contrast to many exoparasites, are active mostly during the night and found on the host during dark. Therefore, a visual check for mites during the day will be misleading as it does not reflect the presence of mites.
How do you eliminate red mites?
It is possible to mitigate all the effects and losses due to red mites, while conforming to organic practices, environmental concerns and residual limits.