The mention of mites can make a budgie owner's skin crawl. Most pet birds don't get mites, but the budgie has the distinction of being one of the few birds that do. Scaly face mange mites can occur on the beak and tail. As these mites can do a lot of damage, your best course is to consult an avian vet. Another type of budgie mites, red mites, can be treated with a natural remedy if the infestation is light. Using a natural remedy for light infestations can help you avoid using pesticides on your precious budgie.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
Things you need
- Pyrethrin spray
- Dish detergent
- Trash bags
- Extra bird cage
Use the pyrethrin spray on your budgie to get rid of the mites. This is a natural, not synthetic, insecticide that comes from Chrysanthemum flowers. Pyrethin's safety has been established with more than 100 years use. Follow the directions on the label and contact an avian vet if you have any questions.
Clean the budgie's cage, perches, toys and all food dishes thoroughly. Use dish detergent and hot water to wash them. Soak everything in a 1 to 10 bleach solution -- 1/4 cup bleach to 2 1/4 cups of water -- for at least 20 minutes. Rinse thoroughly after soaking.
Vacuum one room of your house completely, including curtains and furniture. Put the budgie in the extra cage and place the cage in the vacuumed room. Vacuum the rest of the house completely, including curtains and furniture.
Bag up the cleaned budgie cage, perches, toys and dishes in a trash bag. Press all of the air out of the bag that you can and tie tightly. Store in your garage or other uncarpeted storage area for two weeks. Any remaining mites should be dead after that and you can return the bird to its original cage.
Tips and warnings
- Observe your budgie carefully after treating. Excessive grooming or biting may be a sign that the red mite infestation has reoccurred or worsened.
- Clean your budgie's cage daily. This promotes good health in your bird and keeps any wounds resulting from digging for mites clean.
- Mite deterrent does not have to be used -- once your budgie is free from mites, it will remain free of them unless exposed to another bird that has them.
- Only red mites may be killed by this method. If your budgie does not have red mites, or if this treatment doesn't alleviate your mite problem, consult an avian vet.
- Do not buy pet-store products containing pesticides to get rid of mites. You should only use pesticides prescribed by an avian vet to be certain that it is safe for use on birds.
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