Chickens Dust With Diatomaceous Earth

Control chicken lice by simply giving your birds a pan of diatomaceous earth — they’ll take it from there!

| June/July 2011

It’s amazing how diatomaceous earth (DE) solved the constant lice infestation problems I was having with my small flock of chickens.

All I did was put a pound of DE in a dishpan-size container and put it in their coop. The chickens dusted in it, and the parasite problems went away soon after. I had tried rotenone powder and bathing the chickens in tea tree oil soap — both only worked temporarily.

The bag of DE was $2.95 at our feed store and lasted at least a year. The lovely thing about this method is that the chickens take care of the dusting on their own.

Deborah Butler
Rose Prairie, British Columbia

melissa hj
1/16/2012 11:44:49 PM

As with any dust, it is not good to breathe in large amounts of diatomaceous earth. However, DE is perfectly safe for chickens (and other animals) to consume. In fact, a recent study published in Poultry Science found that Red Lake Diatomaceous Earth can help to decrease internal and external parasites in chickens, increase body weight, increase egg production, egg shell weight and thickness as well as improve general health! The DE will help to kill the ants as well :) Just be sure to thoroughly rinse any products meant for human consumption that have come in contact with the DE.

Tammy Snyder
7/27/2011 9:19:30 PM

I am wanting to control ants and such from eating my garden but plan to get chickens and am looking for something that would be okay for the plants and the birds. I see you said they gave themselves dust baths but I've googled and found that their breathing it in when in cloud form is not good. Is this so?

Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019


Next: April, 27-28 2019
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters

click me