A first year Harper Adams University student has set her sights on tackling the red mite, a notorious parasite of poultry.
Hannah Scott-Cook, from Birmingham, speaking to the Farmers Guardian for its section profiling young farmers, explained her plan to find solutions to red mite infestations that get around the recent ban on chemicals; as well as discussing her non-farming background and enthusiasm for motorsports.
“After keeping chickens at home and struggling through a summer of poultry red mite infestation, I became invested in finding a solution for chicken owners and farmers alike,” said the 19-year-old. “I’m in the process of designing a solution that would not be affected by a ban of chemicals currently used to control red mites commercially.”
The red mite can seriously affect the health of poultry, and cause high economic losses for farmers. The overall infestation rate in European layer poultry housing is 83 per cent, and the worst infestations can result in losses of €2.50 per bird. Hannah’s aims, then, are very much in line with those of the industry as she moves on towards her second year of study.
She added: “I will continue to read, experience and question until I know how I can make a difference involving red mite; potentially through my final research project.”
Read the full Farmers Guardian article here.