As a potential chook keeper, I am always interested in these kind of posts.
I've no experience with this one and just googled it - there are heaps of forum posts on it. Sounds nasty - they all recommend the big guns :(
Someone suggests bathe them in warm soapy water and them smother them in vaseline to suffocate the mites - sounds like a good alternative to pyrethrum dips. Sounds like you need to clean out the hen house too - give it a rest for a few weeks if you can, and paint everything with neem - that works (I've done it for normal bird mites).
Conditioner works on people mites so it might also work on chook mites (it drowns them too). You'd certainly have the fluffiest chooks in Brisbane!
A chook keeper at work said she puts Lime in the hen house to get rid of mites.
I bought some chook manure from a poultry keeper on the southside - I forget where, on the way out to Marsden, and it was riddled with lime - came up 14 on my pH monitor! Makes sense. Wrecks the manure for garden use though :(
I suspect the answer might be to lime the chook pen (where most of the poo and the straw and stuff would be that the mites live in). Then gather the manure and stuff from the free range zone? Doctor Harry was saying mites love a chicken nest (and they won't lay there if there are too many mites).
are you sure it's mites? it could be feather picking by bully birds, or (late!) moulting, or the overly assiduous attentions of a rooster
We've had mites before, but I don't think it's depluming mite... but I guess the treatment would be similar... I would give all the chooks a bath with some kind of pet wash which is suitable for birds. I buy from produce stores in concentrate which I mix with water, I think you can buy the ready made sprays in pet shops, but that works out very exxy... I forgot the name, so it's not much help for you. I use them to bath the chooks, and wash their coop... try checking out your local produce store...
I also put pestene powder into their nest as a prevention... liming or sulpher dusting are also a prevention, but I don't know how well that works, and how much you have to use....
Remember you have to treat all chooks and the coop, not just the chook which is showing symtoms.. You'll need at least another pair of hands to do them too, much easier to have someone hold the chook while you give bath, and dry them off...
yes i uased lime and course salt spread it around your chook pen