Dermanyssus gallinae is an ectoparasite of poultry and other bird species. It causes an enormous amount of damage to the production of eggs and meat. The ongoing struggle for its destruction in facilities is arduous and long lasting. The mite is active at night, because it takes advantage of the darkness to attach to the animal and suck blood, but during the day it hides in different places such as holes, cracks and interstices in the house, cages, and equipment.
Depending on ambient temperature, the life cycle of a red mite from egg to adult can be completed within 8 days, and even accelerated under favourable conditions (i.e. within ambient temperatures of between 25-30˚C and a relative humidity of 60-70%). Fowl red mites exist almost worldwide, and are particularly prevalent in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. There, egg producers not only suffer from production losses but are also confronted with harm to health and finances.
Red chicken mites can endure for a very long time without food and without a host.
The mite progresses through 5 life stages: egg, larva, protonymph, deutonymph and adult. Under favourable conditions this life cycle can be completed within seven days, so populations can grow rapidly - causing anaemia in badly affected flocks of poultry...