Diatomaceous Earth Chickens

Diatomaceous Earth For Backyard Chickens

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Lice or mites on chickens are a pain because infestations are usually heavy, and the insects' life cycle is difficult to thwart. However, there is a natural chicken lice and mite treatment with diatomaceous earth. Diatomaceous earth for chickens works to effectively remove the mites and lice in a safe way. As the fine powder coats their coop, it begins to repel the existing lice or mites, while stopping the insects' egg cycle.

Diatomaceous earth consists of porous diatoms that will absorb moisture and deodorize the area. It's the absorbent properties of DE that are so effective in dehydrating insects, providing long-term protection from lice and mites.

How-To Instructions


Grab Everything You Need

Make sure you have all the right equipment for the job. You can select one of our diatomaceous earth kits that include everything you'll need or just buy some DE and use your own applicators. There is no wrong way to apply diatomaceous earth; it just needs to come into contact with the insect to work.


Prepare the Area

Be sure to clean the coop before you add diatomaceous earth for chickens. This prepares the environment to rid the coop of any mites or lice.


Apply DE to Your Backyard Coop

Diatomaceous Earth is only effective when it is in contact with the lice or mites. Lightly cover the floor of the coop. An applicator like the 3 quart sifting scoop will make spreading diatomaceous earth easy. Make sure areas such as bedding, nest boxes and feeding areas receive special attention.


Other Areas to Consider Applying DE

Some people have put DE in the dust bathing area. This is useful because the chickens will naturally bath themselves in the DE, continuing to treat the mite or lice problem.

Helpful Tips and Warnings

  • For even a backyard coop, you should consider getting the 3 Quart Sifting Scoop, Squeeze Duster, and 25-50 lbs of diatomaceous earth.
  • You can also feed your poultry DE. To read more about it, go to our Using DE as a Feed Additive article.
  • If you have respiratory problems, like asthma, you should wear a dust mask when spreading large amounts of diatomaceous earth.


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DISCLAIMER: We appreciate all tips and comments that are submitted to our site. Please note that we are required to monitor all comments to ensure that the advice given is in compliance with the EPA regulations governing insect kill claims. All suggestions for using DE for the purpose of a natural pesticide should be referencing our EPA registered Crawling Insect Control DE. Any comments that mix advice for both food grade uses and pesticide uses will need to be removed to satisfy the requirements of the EPA.