Comments: 38
Darth Pony 2 months ago
Ack! What an ordeal! Here's hoping your chooks get well and your freckles stay put!
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks! I'm sure I must look like a true idiot staring at my skin, occasionally poking and prodding a freckle (although I try not to do that in public, lol). I hope to see healthier chickens when I get home from work, fingers crossed.
Obsidian Blue 2 months ago
Wow! I hope your efforts work that sounds painful and exhausting.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks, so do I. I've left off most of the other things I've done because this post was long enough and accusations of over-reaction might not be unwarranted. :) But I figure at least one or two things will work and eradicate the little monsters.
Grimlock ♥ Vision 2 months ago
He did all that /and/ made you dinner? I can see the melting!

And I hope all turns out well for you and your birds. And your yawning kitties :P

Here's to getting back to reading, yes?
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Yes, he did, and yes please, back to reading. On top of miserable birds, and itchy red welts on me, this whole thing has KILLED my reading average. lol... ;-)
Grimlock ♥ Vision 2 months ago
I'm like so behind compared to last year :/ And it'll only get worse as the year goes on!

Also, just read the perfect book about my favorite franchise. Since finishing my desire to read anything else? Fried.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Ugh! Book hangovers... the WORST!
Grimlock ♥ Vision 2 months ago
I'm trying to push through some HB books I've started just to get through them. And am going to eye the women of sci-fi/fantasy HB and see if buying more books helps? Or maybe I'll indulge in some TF comics...

And well... I could have itchy red welts, miserable birds AND a book hangover. So two out of three ain't' bad when I don't have two out of those three :P
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Very true... ;)
BrokenTune 2 months ago
That sounds exhausting. I hope your efforts pay off soon.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks - it's already better. Just not quite there 100% yet. But we will be, by god. ;)
JL's Bibliomania 2 months ago
Hope that your diligence pays off (I remember how exhausting it was when our dog brought us a flea infestation a few years ago - we battled it by ourselves for a while and then ended up bringing in an exterminator).
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Ugh! We had a close call with the fleas in the spring. Wasabi had an extended stay at a research vet and brought us home a few fleas; luckily our regular vet caught it, and once we got through our small "Oh the Horror!" fit, we tackled the house in a not-unsimilar way to what we've done this week, although on a much smaller scale (I didn't feel the need to rewash my wardrobe, for example) and all the cats got the drops. Fleas are awful though; so damn resilient! You can't even squash them!
Martini 2 months ago
Oh my, that sounds like a really hellish invasion! Poor you, and poor chickens! Keeping my fingers crossed that you got rid of the buggers and that you'll all be alright pretty soon!
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks. :) This is my punishment for being soft on the turtle doves. We've typically only ever had two in our garden, but this year they brought their friends. A LOT of friends. So, no more turtle dove parties.
Bird mites suck! We had a couple of parakeets. One got loose then came back... with friends. Tiny little bastards. They are the most aggravating creatures I have ever encountered.
I freaked out for an entire year! I remember telling my daughter she had to go shoes becaus3, "You have black specks, dammit!" I realize now it sounded insane.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
I truly understand paranoia now... every time a hair so much as brushes my neck, I'm in front of a mirror, looking for something to move. I make MT change his clothes every time he comes in from the garden too. I think we've seen the worst of it, but I'm confident I'm going to be hyper-aware of moving specks of dust for a very, very long time to come.
Yes. I went completely insane. I even took us to the doc and he just to calm me down treated us for scabies just to be sure they didn't burrow in my skin, I was INSANE!
Char's Horror Corner 2 months ago
Oh man, that sucks! Sounds painful too. :(
I hope everything turns out okay.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks Char; I can't speak for the chooks, but for me the bites don't hurt - just itch. Like poison ivy or chicken pox; that never ending, I-might-go-insane kind of itch. Most of them started to clear up last night (after the fourth shower) so I if I can KILL. THEM. ALL. the chickens and I should be back to rights in a couple of days. :)
Good grief! Well, I certainly hope next week is better!
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks SusannaG. :)
Ugh. That sounds awful. I hope you have defeated the little bastards and life (and reading) can go back to normal.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks Reading - I think we have. We'll have to do all the dusting and treating again in 7 days just to make sure, but I think we're heading in the direction of total annihilation. Fingers crossed.
Person Of Interest 2 months ago
Oh no! Trying to eradicate these little boogers does sounds exhausting. We've had the occasional spider mite problem with plants and ear mites with the cats, but I didn't realize bird mites are equal opportunity parasites and like humans, too. Safer soap might work as an alternative to the sulphur, btw. Hope everybody continues to improve and things get back to normal soon.

And since I know how much you love pop-ups, here's a link to take your mind off those pesky critters: http://www.santoro-london.com/shop/cards-and-3d-pop-up/3d-pop-up/

I like the Pirouettes, Pop-up Places, Swing Cards & PopnRock. Amazon sells some of these, too. :D
Murder by Death 2 months ago
They don't seem to have any effect on MT, and generally they can't survive on human blood, but bite anyway. Ornery buggers. I'll have to see if I can find Safer soap here - that would be great to use on me if they ever come back (or just as a general precaution after being around the chooks/coop) - Kidding!. Thanks!

ETA: Added the Kidding part, just in case someone thinks I'm desperate enough to douse myself in insecticidal soap. :)
I did go that insane. I treated my hair with lice shampoo! They drove me certifiably insane!
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Oh, Jessica I did that too - but I didn't use shampoo, I used an ointment that was 70% sulphur and 30 Pine Tar. I couldn't get that stink out of my hair for DAYS! NOT one of my better ideas.....
Oh my goodness! I'm so sorry. I hope the chicks recover and the mites move on.
Debbie's Spurts 2 months ago
Oh my. Hope it all works out for you.

Does diatomaceous earth work on bird mites (reputedly safe for non-exoskeleton beings like cats, humans and chickens—actually some studies link the silicons in it to better bone development of chickens when sufficiently in their diet)? I know it works on other mites, aphids and chiggers. Oops -- may launch more Google activity by saying that.

Hopefully by vacuum cleaner you mean one with HEPA level filter. Buggers can escape regular ones.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Yes, it does, although some argue against it (I think they're just too impatient as it doesn't kill them instantly, but over the course of days). We use it all the time as part of our regular coop maintenance, But this outbreak happened towards the end of the last coop cleanout so it seems we need to up the frequency (although I'll be using sulphur too from now on).

Yes, the vacuum has 3 filters and one of them is a HEPA - the bag is also a thick one meant to act as a final filter. I also put DE in the bag itself and then tossed the bag when I was finished. Oh, and I sprinkled DE in the carpets AFTER vacuuming too. just in case. :)
Debbie's Spurts 2 months ago
Whew!
Bark's Book Nonsense 2 months ago
I hope it clears up soon. It sounds like an ordeal!
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thanks - I've gone almost 36 hours without a bite, or seeing one of the little f*ckers, so I think we're on our way. I probably made it more of an ordeal than it needed to be, but thoroughness is how I cope. :)
Book Cupidity 2 months ago
All I can say is, bless you. I'm pretty sure I'd just want to abandon my house and wallow in my hopelessness if I were to endure this trial. If my kids (if? ha-ha) get lice someday, I'm not sure I'll be able to survive with out some pharmaceutical help. To me, you feel very calm, cool, and collected in this post, and your methodical treatment, sane. I'm glad to read that things are better overall. Hug a chook for me.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
Thank you BC. I did have times when I actually thought "sell the house and all the contents?". More than a few actually. They're so tiny and it's so hard not to think "I know I've missed some... they're lurking, I know it". If my record of action sounds sane, I'm a more convincing writer than I'd have given myself credit for, lol. MT definitely though I was a bit touched at first, until he saw how big my welts were starting to get. Then he got on board the crazy train with me.

I think we're well on our way, it's just that for all my concerted efforts to stay all organic in the garden, I want these little suckers to die. Dead. dead. dead. And I want it to have been last week. (Actually, I think they are (mostly) all dead - but until all three of my chooks look normal again, I'm going to imagine they're still lingering, and I'm going to keep throwing sulphur at everything.)

IF your kids ever do bring home that particular rite of passage, don't be seduced into putting sulphur or pine tar in their hair. The smell never goes away. Trust me on this. :)