Ivermectin is a medication commonly used to treat a variety of parasites in chickens and other poultry. It can protect your birds from harmful parasites and keep them healthy when used correctly. However, it’s essential to understand the proper dosage, side effects, and why you might use it in your poultry to ensure your birds are safe and healthy.
This article is informational and should not be taken as medical advice. It’s essential to consult a veterinarian who is experienced in treating poultry before administering any medication to your birds. Every bird is different and may have different needs and responses to medications. Please follow the instructions on the label and consult with a professional before using any medication to ensure the safety and health of your poultry.
What is ivermectin for chickens?
Ivermectin is a medication commonly used to treat parasites and mites in chickens. It paralyzes and kills the parasites, allowing the chicken’s immune system to clear them from the body. Ivermectin is generally considered safe and effective, but following dosage instructions carefully and monitoring chickens for any signs of adverse reactions is important. In addition to medication, good hygiene and sanitation practices are essential for preventing and treating parasitic infections in chickens.
Does ivermectin remove parasites in chickens?
Yes, ivermectin is an effective medication for treating various parasites in chickens, including mites, lice, and worms. It disrupts the parasite’s nervous system, leading to paralysis and death.
In a 2020 study, Efficacy of Ivermectin-Based Drugs against Ectoparasites in Broiler Chickens (Arisova GB (2020)), they tested the effectiveness of two ivermectin-based drugs for treating ectoparasites in broiler chickens.
The [ivermectin-based] medications were given orally to two groups of 10 chickens, and the number of ectoparasites was counted before and after treatment. The medication given to the experimental group was 95.6-99.0% effective, while the control group was 85.1-91.1% effective. Blood tests showed normal results for both groups.
The study concluded that the ivermectin-based drug is a safe and effective treatment for ectoparasites in broiler chickens.
Ivermectin side effects on chickens.
Ivermectin is generally considered a safe and effective medication for treating parasites and mites in chickens. However, as with any medication, potential side effects should be considered. Some of the most common side effects of Ivermectin in chickens include diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. In rare cases, more severe side effects such as lethargy, respiratory distress, and seizures may occur. It’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully and to monitor chickens for any signs of adverse reactions. You should contact a veterinarian right away if you notice any concerning symptoms.
Dosage. How much ivermectin for chickens or poultry?
The appropriate amount of Ivermectin to give chickens depends on their weight and the type of parasites or mites being treated. Generally, chickens’ recommended dosage for Ivermectin is 0.2 mg/kg of body weight. However, following dosage instructions carefully and consulting a veterinarian before administering any medication to your chickens is essential. Overdosing can be dangerous and may result in serious side effects. When treating your poultry with ivermectin, it’s essential to use the correct dosage to ensure the medication is effective and safe for your birds. Using too little ivermectin can make the parasites resistant to the drug, while too much can be dangerous for your birds.
How to give ivermectin to chickens.
Ivermectin can be given to chickens orally or through injection. For oral administration, Ivermectin can be mixed with feed or water or delivered directly to chickens using an oral syringe. For injection, Ivermectin should be administered subcutaneously (under the skin) at a dose of 0.2 mg/kg of body weight. It’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully and to use proper injection techniques to avoid injuring or stressing the chicken.
How do you treat chickens for lice and mites?
Lice and mites are common parasites affecting chickens, causing irritation, feather loss, and other health problems. Ivermectin is an effective treatment for these parasites and can be administered orally or through injection. In addition to medication, it’s essential to practice good hygiene and sanitation in the chicken coop, such as regularly cleaning and disinfecting the area and providing fresh bedding. It may also be necessary to isolate infected chickens to prevent the spread of parasites to other birds.
Common Types of Mites that Can Affect Backyard Chickens.
Intro: Mites are a common problem that backyard chicken owners may face, causing irritation, feather loss, and other health issues for their birds. Several mites can affect chickens, each with unique characteristics and treatment options. This section will explore the most common mites affecting backyard chickens, including their symptoms, life cycle, and treatment options. By understanding the types of mites that can affect your chickens, you can take steps to prevent and treat infestations and keep your birds healthy and comfortable.
Several types of mites can affect backyard chickens. Here is a list of the most common ones:
- Red Mite (Dermanyssus gallinae) — These mites are blood-sucking parasites that can cause anemia, irritability, and decreased egg production in chickens. They typically live in crevices and cracks of the chicken coop and come out at night to feed on chickens.
- Northern Fowl Mite (Ornithonyssus sylviarum) — These mites are blood-sucking parasites that can cause symptoms similar to red mites. They typically live on the skin of the chicken, particularly around the vent and under the wings.
- Scaly Leg Mite (Knemidocoptes mutans) — These mites burrow into the scales of the chicken’s legs and feet, causing scaly, crusty lesions and discomfort for the chicken.
- Feather Mites (many species) — These mites live on the chicken’s feathers, feeding on skin debris and feather oils. They can cause feather damage and irritation but are not considered as harmful as other mites.
- Depluming Mite (Neocnemidocoptes gallinae) — These mites burrow into the feather shafts, causing feather loss and damage to the chicken’s skin.
- Chiggers (Trombicula sp.) — These are tiny larvae of mites that can cause itching, redness, and irritation on the skin of chickens. They are usually found in grassy areas or soil where chickens may be foraging.
Identifying the type of mite affecting your chickens is essential to choose the most effective treatment and preventing infestation from spreading to other birds. Consult with a veterinarian if you suspect your chickens have a mite infestation.
The why and the how: Reasons for using ivermectin in chickens.
Ivermectin treats parasites that can affect your poultry, such as mites, lice, and internal worms. These parasites can cause multiple health problems in your birds, such as weight loss, decreased egg production, and even death. Treating these parasites with ivermectin can help protect your birds and keep them healthy.
Meet the Chicken Mite: Red mite, Roost mite, or Poultry mite. These bloodsucking pests are more than just a nuisance for your chickens; they can also bite humans! Most commonly found on smaller farms and rarely in commercial caged hens.
Mite Mischief: These sneaky critters are nocturnal feeders, so they hide during the day. This makes them hard to spot during visual inspections of the coop. But don’t let their stealthy ways fool you; they’re most active during the warm summer months, so extra vigilance is critical!
Mite Mansion: Chicken mites love to hide in cozy places like roosts, under chicken droppings, and in the cracks of the coop. They lay their eggs in these areas, and the coop can remain infested for up to 6 months even after the birds are removed.
Mite Migration: The mites can spread through contact with other infested birds and by mite dispersion.
Mite Mayhem: Heavy infestations of chicken mites can cause decreased egg production in hens, limited reproduction in males, and weight loss in young chicks. In severe cases, it can lead to anemia and even death.
Mite Management: Keeping your coop clean and tidy prevents chicken mites. Regular cleaning and changing nest box bedding and floor bedding can help keep these pests at bay. Using a pressure hose to get into hard-to-reach areas and isolating new birds for a few days before introducing them to the flock are good practices.
Mite Medication: Ivermectin is one treatment option for chicken mites, but other options include carbaryl (found in Sevin Dust), amitraz, malathion, coumaphos, and diatomaceous earth. Remember that these chemicals may cause egg withdrawal, so always read the label and use caution.
Mite-Free Coop: When an infestation occurs, it’s essential to clean common areas like the chicken run and dust bath, the coop underneath, and the ground below. Using a fan to blow dust into hard-to-reach places and using Dimethoate and Fenthion when chickens are not present can also help. Remember to take appropriate precautions to avoid contact with harmful chemicals when using these treatments.
How ivermectin works. Paralyzing the parasites: the mechanism of action.
Ivermectin disrupts the parasites’ nervous system, causing paralysis and death. Specifically, Ivermectin binds to specific receptors in the parasite’s nervous system, called glutamate-gated chloride channels. This binding causes an influx of chloride ions into the parasite’s nerve cells, leading to hyperpolarization and paralysis. The parasite is then cleared from the chicken’s body through the immune system.
Beware of the side effects: safety precautions for using ivermectin.
While ivermectin is generally safe for use in poultry, there are some side effects you should be aware of. These can include loss of appetite, diarrhea, and weight loss. In rare cases, it can also cause more severe side effects, such as tremors and seizures.
Interactions and contraindications: medications and ivermectin.
Ivermectin can interact with other medications, so it’s essential to consult your veterinarian before using it in conjunction with other treatments. It’s also contraindicated in young birds, laying hens, and birds with certain health conditions.
Young and fragile: special considerations for young or laying chickens.
Be extra cautious when using ivermectin in young or laying chickens, as these birds may be more sensitive to the medication. It’s also contraindicated in laying hens as it may affect their egg production.
The importance of proper dosage, safety precautions, and consultation.
Ivermectin is an effective treatment for various parasites in poultry. Still, the correct dosage is essential to ensure the medication is safe and effective for your birds. Proper dosage, understanding the side effects, interactions, and contraindications, and consulting with a veterinarian are all crucial to ensuring the health and safety of your poultry.
Expert opinion: why consultation with a veterinarian is critical.
Consulting with a veterinarian who is experienced in treating poultry is the best way to ensure you use ivermectin correctly and safely. They can help you determine the correct dosage, administer the medication, and monitor your birds for side effects.
Alternatives to ivermectin for chickens.
Ivermectin is a popular medication used to treat a variety of parasites in chickens and other poultry. However, there are other options available for treating parasites in your birds. Several alternatives to ivermectin can also protect your poultry from harmful parasites.
I want to point out that these alternatives will only work if the parasites have not built up a resistance to the mentioned chemicals. Please read the label and consult with a veterinarian who is experienced in treating poultry before administering any medication to your birds. Every bird is different and may have different needs and responses to medications.
Diatomaceous earth can effectively treat mites and lice in chickens, but application rates must be high if humidity is high. Inert dust includes diatomaceous earth, which is well-known amongst backyard chicken enthusiasts.
One alternative to ivermectin is carbaryl, commonly sold as the ingredient in “Sevin Dust.” This medication is widely reported to be effective in combating chicken mites and other unrelated issues, such as ant infestations and fleas. However, it’s important to note that egg withdrawal may occur after using Sevin Dust, so reading the label and using it as directed is essential.
Another alternative to ivermectin is malathion, most commonly found in insecticides but usually in liquid form. This medication is typically used to treat lice and mites in chickens. Following the label instructions when using malathion is essential, as it can be toxic if not used properly.
Amitraz is another alternative to ivermectin used to treat mites and lice in chickens. This medication is available in a spray or pour-on form and is applied directly to the bird’s feathers. Amitraz effectively kills mites and lice but can also be toxic if misused.
Coumaphos is another alternative to ivermectin used to treat mites and lice in chickens. This medication is available in a pour-on or feed form and is applied directly to the birds. Coumaphos effectively kills mites and lice but can also be toxic if misused.
Diatomaceous earth is another alternative to ivermectin used to treat mites and lice in chickens. This medication is a natural and organic option; it dehydrates the pests and is applied as dust. Diatomaceous earth kills mites and lice but can also be toxic if misused.
Permethrin is another alternative to ivermectin used to treat mites and lice in chickens. This medication is available in dust or spray and is applied directly to the bird’s feathers. Permethrin effectively kills mites and lice but can also be toxic if misused.
Frequently asked questions about ivermectin for chickens.
How much ivermectin do you give chickens?
The amount of ivermectin to give chickens will depend on their weight and the type of parasites or mites being treated. The recommended dosage of ivermectin for chickens is 0.2 mg/kg of body weight, which can be given orally or through injection. It’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully and to consult with a veterinarian before administering any medication to your chickens to avoid overdosing, which can be dangerous and may result in serious side effects.
What does ivermectin do for chickens?
Ivermectin is a medication commonly used to treat parasites and mites in chickens. It disrupts the parasites’ nervous system, causing paralysis and death. Ivermectin is generally considered safe and effective, but following dosage instructions carefully and monitoring chickens for any signs of adverse reactions is essential. Practicing good hygiene and sanitation in the chicken coop is also crucial to prevent reinfection.
Can I put ivermectin in my chicken’s water?
Ivermectin can be administered to chickens through their drinking water. Still, it’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully and ensure that all chickens receive the proper amount of medication. Ivermectin should not be mixed with chlorinated water, which can cause the medication to break down and become less effective. Ensuring chickens are not dehydrated and consume the proper moisture is also essential.
How long does it take for ivermectin to work on chicken mites?
The time it takes for ivermectin to work on chicken mites will depend on the type of mite and the severity of the infestation. Generally, it takes several days for ivermectin to take effect and eliminate mites from the chicken’s body. However, it may take longer for the chicken’s feathers and skin to recover from any damage caused by the mites.
How do you treat chicken mites with Ivermectin?
Ivermectin is an effective treatment for chicken mites, administered orally or through injection. It’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully and ensure all chickens receive the proper medication. In addition to medication, good hygiene and sanitation practices are essential for preventing and treating parasitic infections in chickens. It may also be necessary to isolate infected chickens to prevent the spread of parasites to other birds.
Can I eat eggs after giving chickens Ivermectin?
There is generally no withdrawal period for eggs or meat after giving chickens ivermectin, as the medication is considered safe for human consumption. However, following dosage instructions carefully and ensuring the medication is delivered safely and effectively is essential. If you have any concerns, consult a veterinarian or other poultry expert.
What parasites does ivermectin get rid of?
Ivermectin is effective against many parasites and mites that can affect chickens, including red mites, northern fowl mites, scaly leg mites, feather mites, depluming mites, and chiggers. However, it’s essential to identify the type of parasite or mite affecting your chickens to choose the most effective treatment and prevent the infestation from spreading to other birds.
What kills mites in a chicken coop?
In addition to medication, good hygiene and sanitation practices are essential for preventing and treating mite infestations in a chicken coop. Regularly cleaning and disinfecting the coop and providing fresh bedding and nesting materials can help prevent mite infestations. Dust baths are also crucial for chickens, as they help keep the feathers and skin clean and dry, which can deter mites from taking hold. Certain herbs and spices, such as garlic, cinnamon, and oregano, may also have mite-repelling properties and can be added to the chicken’s diet.
Is apple cider vinegar a wormer for chickens?
While apple cider vinegar is often touted as a natural remedy for various ailments in chickens, including parasites, little scientific evidence supports its effectiveness as a wormer. While some studies have suggested that apple cider vinegar may have antimicrobial properties, it’s unclear whether it can effectively kill or prevent internal parasites in chickens. If you suspect your chickens have a parasitic infection, it’s best to consult a veterinarian or other poultry expert to determine the best course of treatment.
What is a good natural dewormer for chickens?
Several natural deworming remedies, including herbs, spices, and other natural supplements, can treat parasitic infections in chickens. Some commonly used remedies include garlic, pumpkin seeds, diatomaceous earth, and probiotics. However, it’s important to note that while these remedies may have some antimicrobial properties, there is limited scientific evidence to support their effectiveness as dewormers. If you suspect your chickens have a parasitic infection, it’s best to consult a veterinarian or other poultry expert to determine the best course of treatment.
What is the best worming for chickens?
The best course of treatment for parasitic infections in chickens will depend on the type of parasite and the severity of the infestation. Ivermectin is a commonly used medication for treating parasitic infections in chickens, as it is effective against a wide range of parasites and mites. Other medications, such as fenbendazole and piperazine, may also be effective in treating specific types of parasites. It’s important to follow dosage instructions carefully and to consult with a veterinarian or other poultry expert to determine the best course of treatment.
What is the best way to get rid of mites on chickens?
The best way to get rid of mites on chickens is to use medication, good hygiene, and sanitation practices. Ivermectin is an effective medication for treating mites in chickens and can be administered orally or through injection. In addition, regularly cleaning and disinfecting the chicken coop, providing fresh bedding, and dust baths can help prevent and treat mite infestations. Isolating infected chickens may also be necessary to prevent the spread of mites to other birds.
Will vinegar get rid of chicken mites?
While vinegar may have some mild antiparasitic and antimicrobial properties, it’s not a reliable or effective method for removing chicken mites. Vinegar on chickens or in the chicken coop may harm their skin and respiratory systems. Instead, it’s best to use proven methods of treating and preventing mite infestations, such as medication, good hygiene, and sanitation practices.
Should I use ivermectin for my chickens?
While ivermectin is a popular medication for treating chicken parasites, other options exist. Alternatives like carbaryl, malathion, amitraz, coumaphos, diatomaceous earth, and permethrin can protect your poultry from harmful parasites. It’s essential to use these medications as directed, consult a veterinarian, and read the label before administering any medication to your birds to ensure their safety and health.
Tamara K. Al-Najmawi; Muna H. Al-Zubaidy. “Acute toxicity events of ivermectin in chicks’ model“. Iraqi Journal of Veterinary Sciences, 36, 4, 2022, 1119-1124. doi: 10.33899/ijvs.2022.133188.2188
Holcomb, Karen M et al. “Effects of ivermectin treatment of backyard chickens on mosquito dynamics and West Nile virus transmission.” PLoS neglected tropical diseases vol. 16,3 e0010260. 25 Mar. 2022, doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0010260
Arisova GB (2020). Efficacy of Ivermectin-Based Drugs against Ectoparasites in Broiler Chickens. World Vet. J., 10 (2): 160-164. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.36380/scil.2020.wvj20