Top Dangerous Respiratory Diseases in birds


Birds are susceptible to numerous respiratory infections. Some of the respiratory infections are mild but some serious conditions may cause even deaths. Respiratory and airway diseases are very common in pet birds. Here are some of the serious respiratory diseases in birds:

1. Avian aspergillosis:

Avian aspergillosis is a one of the respiratory infections common in birds. It is a fungal infection caused by fungus Aspergillus. The spores of aspergillus are responsible for respiratory infection in birds. These fungal spores are present in contaminated water, food, incubators, nest boxes, unventilated areas and other nesting materials. Birds could also get infections from the environment.

Birds suffering with vitamin A deficiency, stress and malnutrition are more prone to fungal infections. The fungal spores infect the lungs and reduce the bird’s immunity.

Dangerous Respiratory Diseases in birds

Types and Symptoms Avian aspergillosis respiratory infection in birds:

There are two types of aspergillus infections which are found in birds. They are:

  • Acute Aspergillus:When the air sacs got inflamed with deposition of white mucus results in air sacculitis which is common in newly imported and young birds. It stays for short time, but is severe. Breathing difficulties and lack of appetite are the symptoms of acute aspergillus infection.
  • Chronic aspergillus: Chronic Aspergillus occurs in older and captive birds. This shows symptoms of weakness, listlessness, breathing problems over a long period. These symptoms can be found out only when the lungs are infected for over a period of time.

2. Avian Sarcocystosis:

Lungs are infected and respiratory problems occur in birds by parasites which are called respiratory parasites (protozoa) like parasite sarcocystis falcatula. It infects the soft tissues of birds thus forming cysts in nervous system, kidneys and muscles.

  • Symptoms: Lethargy, regurgitation of water, and anemia are the most common symptoms that are found in diseased bird.
  • Causes: The disease can be transmitted through contaminated water, food and environment. Birds are infected by having diseased or infected cockroach or when they come in contact with feces of diseased rats, raccoons, skunks and opossums.

3. Macaw Respiratory Hypersensitivity

Macaw asthma or macaw respiratory hypersensitivity is a kind of lung disease cause allergic reaction in birds. Blue and Gold Macaw are the two types of birds which are more to the infection.

  • Symptoms: It shows the symptoms similar to other respiratory illnesses like breathing difficulties and nasal discharge which leads to permanent lung disruption. Birds which are suffering from allergic reactions are more likely to have macaw respiratory hypersensitivity.
  • Causes:There are numerous reasons having macaw asthma. Some birds like cockatoos and African Grey parrots release feather dust which causes Macaw Asthma.

4. Air Sac Mite

Air sac mite is one such disease which causes airway and lung disorders especially affects whole respiratory tract. Parasites are located from the nose of diseased bird to air sacs of lungs. Gouldian finches and canaries are two varieties of birds which are most prone to air sac mites.

  • Symptoms:Symptoms are based on the severity of disease. Open mouth breathing, excessive salivation,bobbing the tail and breathing problems are the most common symptoms in the diseased birds.


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