Swirling symptoms in pigeons, Newcastle disease treatment and prevention

Swirling symptoms in pigeons, Newcastle disease treatment and prevention

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Twig, or Newcastle disease, in pigeons proceeds with lightning speed (asymptomatic) or with pronounced clinical signs. This dangerous disease, also called the Asian plague, often leads to the death of the entire population of birds. You can prevent wiggle with vaccination. Immunization is the only way to insure pigeons against this deadly bird disease.

Causes of twirling in pigeons

Newcastle disease is caused by an RNA virus from the paramyxovirus genus. The pathogen is sensitive to ultraviolet light, and a temperature of +100 degrees Celsius kills it in one minute. The virus persists for years at subzero temperatures and in frozen bird carcasses. The pathogen can be found in soil, dirty litter, or on tools. You can disinfect the territory and objects with the help of alcohol, caustic soda, phenol, formaldehyde.

The virus infects adult pigeons and young chicks. Birds can become infected with this disease from sick inhabitants of the poultry yard, as well as through contaminated feed, water, bedding, soil, feathers, eggs, equipment. Newcastle disease also spreads aerogenically. Infection with a swivel occurs through the respiratory system, mucous membranes of the eyes, mouth, gastrointestinal tract (orally).

Adults with weakened immunity due to poor nutrition and chickens are the most difficult to tolerate Newcastle disease.

Symptoms of the disease

Signs and characteristics of the whirligig:

  • the incubation period is 2-7 (less often 9-21) days;
  • the whirligig develops with lightning speed, acutely, subacutely or chronically;
  • with a lightning-fast course, pigeons suddenly die for no apparent reason or symptoms;
  • acute pathology is characterized by fever, depression, inactivity, loss of appetite, corneal opacity, mucus from the mouth and nose, coughing, sneezing, shortness of breath;
  • developing in the digestive system, the virus causes watery diarrhea;
  • with the slow development of the disease and damage to the nervous system, signs of encephalomyelitis are noticeable (uncertain walking, paralysis of the limbs or wings, tremors, convulsions, torticollis with neck rotation up to 180 degrees);
  • the wiggle can occur with symptoms of pneumonia, digestive and nervous disorders, or with only one type of pronounced clinical signs;
  • with fulminant illness, death occurs within several hours;
  • in the acute course of the whirligig, pigeons may die on day 4;
  • the subacute phase has smoothed symptoms and a low percentage of death (about 30%);
  • autopsy of dead sick birds reveals multiple punctate hemorrhagic lesions of internal organs;
  • a chronic phase is possible, not leading to death, but causing irreversible nervous disorders (inability to fly).

Methods for diagnosing the disease

The worm is diagnosed based on clinical signs and laboratory tests. During the outbreak of the epidemic, the carcass of the dead bird must be provided to the laboratory. As a result of pathological and laboratory studies, the virus that caused the disease of pigeons is isolated and identified. Upon confirmation of Newcastle disease, treatment is prescribed to live sick birds.

How to treat a pigeon whirligig

Newcastle disease is treated early. Sick pigeons must be quarantined (transplanted into a separate room). In advanced cases, treatment is impractical. It is recommended to dispose of birds in which a severe course of the disease has been identified.


The worm is treated with medications that can be bought at any veterinary pharmacy. If signs of Newcastle disease are found, the pigeons are prescribed "Fosprenil". It is a drug with antiviral, immunomodulatory properties. The drug activates the production of interferon in the body of birds, which begins to fight viruses.

The drug for oral administration can be added to drinking water, instilled in the pigeon's mouth. This medication is available as a solution for injection (injections are given in the breast). The duration of the medication is 5-10 days.

Together with "Fosprenil" sick birds are prescribed "Piracetam" or "Cerebrolysin". These medicines support the nervous system of pigeons. In parallel with these two preparations, the birds are given pharmaceutical vitamins and minerals ("Gamavit"). In some cases, Karsil is prescribed to maintain liver function. In case of infection, an antibiotic is prescribed, and then probiotics. The dosage of any medicinal product must be prescribed by a veterinarian.

Folk remedies and recipes

The pigeon whirligig is not a new disease. The virus existed long before the advent of pharmaceutical drugs, which are currently used to combat the pathogen and treat birds. In the people, a whirligig is treated with improvised means.

Sick pigeons are recommended to drink a slightly pink solution of potassium permanganate. To replenish the body with vitamins, the birds are added to the feed chopped spruce needles, onions and garlic. Sick individuals can be watered with a decoction of chamomile, St. John's wort, nettle. Some pigeon breeders treat swirling with olive oil and lemon juice, this mixture is used to solder sick pigeons.

Expert opinion

Zarechny Maxim Valerievich

Agronomist with 12 years of experience. Our best summer cottage expert.

At the time of the acute course of the disease, it is recommended that birds be given a lot of water and light vitamin feed (cottage cheese, yogurt, egg yolk, crushed corn, sprouted wheat, oat, barley grains).

Danger to humans

People who come into contact with sick birds (pigeon breeders, veterinarians, laboratory assistants) can get sick with a pigeon twirl. Sometimes a person develops signs of conjunctivitis and a cold. The virus enters the human body through the respiratory system, mouth, mucous membranes of the eyes. Possible deterioration of health, runny nose, cough, enlargement of the parotid lymph nodes.

True, human infection with Newcastle disease occurs in isolated cases. Susceptibility to this avian disease affects only people with weak immunity and a tendency to allergies. Twig is a disease of pigeons, for humans it, in most cases, is not dangerous.

Preventive actions

The spread of the whirligig is easier to prevent than to cure. First of all, it is recommended to protect domestic pigeons from contact with birds of prey, carriers of the virus. In the dovecote, it is necessary to regularly clean and disinfect the premises. It is advisable to vaccinate healthy pigeons. Immunization increases the resistance of birds to the virus. Vaccination will save pigeons' lives.

Several types of live vaccines have been developed for Newcastle disease. It is recommended to vaccinate birds twice. Adult pigeons are vaccinated before hatching eggs (in early spring) and in the fall, before molting. Birds become immune to the virus 48-96 hours after vaccination.

Vaccination is carried out in different ways: by instillation, aerosol injection, watering, intramuscular injection. A small percentage of vaccinated pigeons do not develop antibodies to the virus. Only healthy birds are vaccinated. If signs of swirling in pigeons are detected, quarantine is imposed on the entire poultry farm (for 40 days).

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