11.2 Observe droppings, cleaning methods, desinfection

Abnormal Droppings

  • Decrease in the total number or volume of droppings
  • Color change of the urates/urine to green or yellow
  • Increase in the water content of the feces (diarrhea)
  • Increase in the urine portion (polyuria).
  • Decrease in the feces volume with increased urates (polyurates)
  • Presence of blood
  • Any strong odor in the droppings

Some normal variations may be seen in impending egg laying females, baby birds on handfeeding formulas, the first void of the morning, conditions of nervousness and stress, or following a large meal of a specific colored food (e.g., blueberries). Thus, the owner should evaluate several droppings under normal circumstances before becoming alarmed.

Other Early Signs of Disease

The following signs may not require emergency treatment but, because they are abnormal, indicate the bird should be checked by your avian veterinarian.

  • Prolonged molt or continual presence of lost pinfeathers
  • Broken, bent, picked or chewed feathers
  • Unusual or dull feather color
  • Stained feathers over nares or around the face or vent
  • Crusty material in or around nostrils
  • Redness, swelling or loss of feathers around eyes, baldness
  • Flakiness on skin or beak
  • Sores on bottom of feet
  • Lameness or shifting of body weight
  • Overgrowth of beak or nails
  • Minor changes in talking, biting, or eating habits


These solutions will reduce or eliminate slime and most disease organisms in water, drinkers, and water lines.

For Constant Use

1 teaspoon chlorine bleach (sodium hypochlorite) in 5 gallons of drinking water

This solution provides 11 ppm chlorine for sanitizing. The birds will drink the water and not be harmed by drinking it. They may need a short time to become accustomed to this solution. A more dilute solution with half the above level of bleach can be offered for a few days before using the 11 ppm solution. Clean the waterers thoroughly each day to get the best effect.

Weekly Sanitizing Rinse Solution

1 oz Chlorine Bleach in 6-8 gallons water

Rinse, soak, or expose equipment to this solution. Let stand at least one hour, then rinse with fresh water. This solution contains equivalent to 45 ppm chlorine. The procedure is most effective if conducted on a weekly basis. Remember, chlorine disinfectants are inactivated by organic matter. Clean all equipment well before using chlorine rinse solutions.

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