To investigate the prevalence and control of ectoparasites in China, 1200 questionnaires were delivered to caged commercial layer or parent hen keepers. Of the 860 respondents, 785 (91.3 per cent) claimed they found suspected ectoparasites in their birds and 833 samples were received. Ectoparasites of the species Dermanyssus gallinae, Ornithonyssus sylviarum or Menacanthuss stramineus were found in 736 (88.4 per cent) samples. For caged commercial layers, D gallinae was the most common ectoparasite (64.1 per cent). For caged parent hens, O sylviarum was the most common ectoparasite (46.9 per cent). Most bird keepers (95.0 per cent of commercial layer keepers and 74.9 per cent of parent hen keepers) used pyrethroids, organophosphates or other insecticides or acaricides to control ectoparasites. However, 34.6 per cent of layer keepers and 25.7 per cent of parent hen keepers did not re-treat their birds with insecticides or acaricides within two weeks after the first treatment. Sanitation procedures, including cleaning, washing and disinfection, were conducted in empty houses between flocks and on most commercial layer farms and parent hen farms. However, insecticides or acaricides were used in empty houses between flocks only in 24.8 per cent of commercial layer farms and in 36.1 per cent of parent hen farms.
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Provenance not commissioned; externally peer reviewed