University of Maryland Extension

Bird Mites

bird mite

Key Points

  • Bird Mites, also known as northern fowl mites are parasites of birds and domestic fowl.
  • They become pests in the home when they migrate from bird nests on/or in the home and bite humans. They are very tiny, a millimeter or less in length.
  • Their color varies from white before feeding, and red to black after feeding.
  • Problems with bird mites typically occur when bird nestlings leave the nest. The hungry mites leave the nest in search of more birds to feed on.
  • For outside nests, they usually come down the wall and enter via window frames or other openings in the exterior wall.
  • For interior nests, they usually come through the attic and enter via openings in the ceiling or interior wall surfaces.


  • To control an infestation of bird mites, first locate the nest. If it is empty, slip a plastic bag over it, seal the bag and dispose of it. For additional help, please refer to the following information:

University of Minnesota Extension: Bird and rodent mites in homes

Rev. 2020

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