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Hi All,

We have had three six or seven month old barred rocks that mostly stay in a chicken run during the day. Since we've had them, they've climbed up a ramp into their coop to sleep for the night without fail. The last couple of nights they haven't been going up into the coop and have been sleeping on the ramp instead.

About a week ago we noticed that we had mites in the coop. We've inspected each chicken multiple times and it doesn't seem like the mites are living on them, but they are definitely in the nesting boxes and on the ceiling of the coop. Might this be why the girls won't go inside anymore? Or is there any other reason, like shorter evenings, etc? We really don't want them to get attacked by raccoons (or be generally uncomfortable). Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks
 

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Yep...that could be the reason. That type of mite comes out at night to feast on the chickens but does not live on the bird. You could treat your roosts, nest boxes and the wood of the coop to get rid of the little suckers so your birds can rest at night.

It's like having bed bugs in your home!
 

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Something could have scared them in the coop. Is it hot right now? You said you found mites, was thins find at the same time your chickens started to not go in ?
 
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