Bird Mites: What to Know and How to Get Rid of Them
Bird mites are tiny, parasitic arachnids that feed on the blood of birds. They are also known as chicken mites and can be a nuisance to both pet and wild birds. Bird mites can also bite humans, causing itchy red bumps.
What to Know About Bird Mites
Bird mites are found worldwide, and they can live in various habitats, including bird nests, chicken coops, and homes. Bird mites are most active at night and are attracted to the warmth and carbon dioxide produced by birds and mammals.
Bird mites are microscopic, measuring about 1/32 of an inch long. They are translucent brown or red, and they have eight legs. Bird mites can live for several weeks without a blood meal but eventually die if they cannot find a host.
How Bird Mites Get Into Homes
Bird mites can enter homes through a variety of ways, including:
- Through open windows and doors
- On the fur of pets
- On clothing or other objects that have been in contact with birds or their nests
Once bird mites are inside a home, they can hide in carpets, bedding, and other soft furnishings. They can also live in cracks and crevices in walls and floors.
Signs of a Bird Mite Infestation
If you have bird mites in your home, you may notice the following symptoms:
- Small, red bumps on your skin, especially on your arms, legs, and torso
- Itching and redness at the bite sites
- Bird droppings and other signs of bird activity around your home
Are humans susceptible to bird mites?
Bird mites are capable of brief survival on people. However, they are unable to procreate on human skin. Usually, they bite people while sleeping or taking a break in an area where bird mites are present.
Treatment for Bites by Bird Mites
Several measures can be taken to alleviate the symptoms of bird mites have bitten you:
Use water and soap to wash the impacted area.
To lessen irritation and inflammation, apply a cold compress.
Itching can be minimized by using an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream.
Use an oral antihistamine to reduce swelling and irritation, such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl).
You could require prescription medicine from your doctor if you experience a severe reaction to bird mite bites.
Can bird mites harm pets?
Pets, including dogs, cats, and rabbits, are susceptible to bird mite bites. Pets can have the same symptoms as people from bird mite bites.
Contact your veterinarian if you believe bird mites have bitten your pet. They can suggest the best course of action for your pet.
How to Get Rid of Bird Mites
If you think you have a bird mite infestation, it is essential to take action immediately. Bird mites can multiply quickly, and they can be challenging to get rid of.
The first step is to identify and eliminate the source of the infestation. This may involve removing bird nests from your home, sealing up any cracks or crevices where birds enter, and treating your pets for bird mites.
Once you have identified and eliminated the infestation’s source, you can treat your home for bird mites. There are several different ways to do this, including:
- Vacuuming: Vacuum your home thoroughly, paying particular attention to carpets, bedding, and other soft furnishings. Be sure to discard the vacuum bag or canister after vacuuming.
- Washing: Wash all bedding and clothing in hot water. Also, wash your carpets and other soft furnishings.
- Spraying: Several insecticidal sprays are effective against bird mites. Be sure to follow the directions on the product label carefully.
- Fogging: Fogging is a more intensive form of treatment that can be used to kill bird mites in hidden areas. A professional should do fogging.
Preventing Bird Mites
The best way to prevent bird mites from entering your home is to keep them out in the first place. This means:
- Sealing up any cracks or crevices where birds may be entering
- Removing bird nests from around your home
- Treating your pets to bird mites regularly
If you find bird mites in your home, preventing them from multiplying and spreading immediately is essential.
Although their bites can cause discomfort and itching, bird mites are not toxic. Additionally, dogs, cats, and rabbits can get bitten by bird mites.
Several measures can be taken to alleviate the symptoms if you believe that you or your pet has been bitten by bird mites. For suggestions on how to remove bird mites from your home, you should also speak with your veterinarian.