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Will D.E. kill flies in my chicken yard and coop?

 
Linda Joe
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Flies are attacking me and my girls. Will DE kill them? If not, what will?
 
Jay Green
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I have found that using fermented feeds has drastically reduced any flies lingering in my coop and in the yard~I"ve not seen a single fly this year~in the coop or in our home. They do not seem attracted to the feces, though butterflies still do. My dog won't eat the chicken feces any longer either, so the act of fermentation must increase the uptake of protein and thus remove it from the end product. My dog used to hoover up any chicken poop he could~which was convenient to us and also cut down on the fly population~but now there must not be any benefit, nutritionally speaking, for him to do so.

This may sound crazy but folks on Backyard Chickens swear by it, I have tried it in my home and it actually works~ vanilla car deodorizer...the kind shaped like a tree(other kinds seem to have no effect)...will deter flies from the coop. Some have even put them on their goat's horns and it provided the same relief! Worth a shot and are cheap. Keep them changed out and fresh and they seem to work very well. We were plagued by flies in my last home and that was before I got into fermented feeds....the little yellow trees was more effective than anything else I've ever seen. I even had swarms of flies in my truck and the yellow tree took care of it within a few days time...no more flies as long as I kept a fresh one in my truck.

Deep litter makes a big difference also. Turning the feces under the roosts into the litter each day keeps them inaccessible to flies and they provide no attractant.
 
Linda Joe
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Dear Jay, thanks so much for your quick reply. I am curently feeding corn scratch along with mash pellets. I do not know what fermented feeds is, but trust my feed store will. For each fly I kill with fly swatter inside, 50 more fly in the door when I go in and out. Which is all day long. I will buy vanilla trees today. Again, thank you for your reply. Linda in Texas.
 
bob day
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Location: Central Virginia USA
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putting DE in your feed (make sure it is food grade DE) will reduce flies and is supposed to have other beneficial effects for the birds (dewormer)

i feed it to my guineas periodically with no ill effects
 
Ollie Puddlemaker
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Location: Houston, Tesas
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Linda - Welcome to Permies...

Jay has given us a wealth of info on how she feeds and uses 'fermented feeds' with her flock. No, the feed store won't be able to help you much, most likely. But you can make your own fermented/sprouted feeds fairly easily. If you would do a 'search' here on Pemies for 'fermented feeds' you can read what Jay has taugh us before. You can also use pine branches, fronds, cones to help repel flies and begin you deep litter, you could make up some Lactic Acid Bacteria serum and spray diluted to your coop and run and further help the deep litter building. The DE can help, but won't be as effective as other applications/methods you can utilize...
 
bob day
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Location: Central Virginia USA
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i've also heard about using soldier fly larvae to eat grains(and wastes) and then feeding them to the chickens--the fly itself is not problematic because it's not a disease vector in the fly stage, although i've never done this, it is intriguing and if anyone has specifics on that i think they might out compete the regular fly larvae and provide some nutrition as well
 
Ollie Puddlemaker
Posts: 148
Location: Houston, Tesas
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That's true the BSF give off a pheromone that is unpleasant to other flies and they won't stay, the BSF are harmless and do not bite or sting, do not pass any pathology to humans or livestock/fowl and will eat most everything, except high-cellulose carbon, in addition as you've indicated, they offer in return a high-protien feed...
 
Linda Joe
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Thanks to all that replied and shared their wealth of knowledge. linda/
 
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