Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Dermanyssus gallinae

Synonym(s): D. gallinae, red mite (poultry and other birds

Contributor(s): Sheelagh Lloyd

Introduction

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Clinical Effects

Epidemiology

Habitat

  • Temporary parasite.
  • Mites live in dark crevices in walls and cages of poultry houses, nests of birds in eaves, in aviaries.
  • Emerge only temporarily to suck blood on birds, primarily but not exclusively at night.
  • Occasionally feed on dog, cat or man.

Lifecycle

  • D. gallinae lifecycle :
    • Adult.
    • Egg.
    • Larva.
    • Nymphs.

Transmission

  • Dogs only an accidental host, becoming infected with mites from the environment of birds.

Pathological effects

  • Hypersensitivity reaction to mite antigen deposited in skin when it bites.
  • Eosinophilic infiltration in the dermis and perivascular areas is described in human patients.
  • Erythematous, pruritic papules from bites of mites that may have entered the house.
  • Severe infestations of dogs lying near poultry houses develop into miliary dermatitis lesions with erythema, pruritus, crusting and severe self-excoriation.
  • Lesions primarily along the back but also on the limbs and over the whole body.

Other Host Effects

  • Feeds on blood in nymphal and adult stages.

Control

Control via animal

  • Mites will not remain on the animal but acaricide/insecticide wash/spray might be useful.

Control via chemotherapies

  • Amitraz Amitraz (unlicensed use in dogs).
  • Dichlorvos /fenitrothion (unlicensed use in dogs).
  • Phosmet (unlicensed use in dogs).
  • Fipronil (unlicenced use in dogs).

Control via environment

  • Mites will survive months in the environment in an unfed state.
  • Aggressive treatment of poultry house with acaricide.
  • Remove nests from eaves, etc, or treat them with an acaricide after fledglings have left.

Diagnosis

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers


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