• Pest Control - Bird Mites

    Bird Mite Control

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  • There are three main types of Bird Mites: Red Mites, Air Sac Mites and Scaly Face/Leg Mites – they tend to prefer warmer climates but attach themselves to many common birds including pigeons, starlings, sparrows, poultry and wild birds.

    They are miniscule parasites, with eight legs and a transparent look which means they are barely visible by the naked eye. Once they have digested blood they turn a reddish black colour which makes them slightly more noticeable.

    Bird mites will gain contact with humans when birds make nests in their properties; for example in the roof cavities, via missing tiles or in barns, factories and older buildings. The birds use a lot of nesting materials that the mites thrive in. They live off the baby birds and their parents by sucking their blood. The different types of mites cause different problems to their hosts. Red Mites are active at night and they damage the birds feathers. Air Sac Mites affect the birds respiratory system, causing sneezing and raspy breathing. Scaly Face Mites cause

    white porous crusts around the mouth, eyelids and beak.

    When the birds leave the nest, some mites may go with them, attached to their feathers; the mites left behind in the nest will die within 10 days if they don’t get a meal from a bird host.

    Although they can bite humans, they do not infect or infest their skin in any way. The bites are similar to flea bites but a little smaller. The bites cause severe irritation and itchiness, which can result in infection if they are scratched too harshly. In severe cases they can be mistaken for scabies.

    The bites can be treated with antihistamines and the source of the infestation should be identified and removed. If you can find the nesting spots, you should completely remove all traces of nests and discourage birds from your property. Insecticidal sprays can be used to eradicate the mites but you also must remove nests to truly be sure they will not return.

    To prevent birds nesting in the first place you should replace any broken or missing roof tiles or timber beams, any potential entry points to eaves and roof areas should be boarded up and nesting sites on window ledges should be cleared.

    If you have been bitten repeatedly by bird mites and are having difficulty locating the nesting spots, you should contact your local pest controllers to help you eradicate the problem swiftly.

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