Trichomonas Gallinae (Canker), Sour Crop and Cloacitis (Vent Gleet) Treatment – Part One

Published by Julie Madison on

Trichomonas Gallinae (Canker), Sour Crop and Cloacitis (Vent Gleet) Treatment - Part One

Trichomonas Gallinae, Sour Crop and Cloacitis are health issues that almost all bird keepers will encounter over time. All require treatment with medications to resolve the issue or the bird may die. We offer several medication options at Springwater Avian Health as well as Acidified Copper Sulfate which can be used as a preventative measure if your birds seem to be more susceptible to these health issues. Climate, weather, housing, feed and species all factor into the risk factors for these issues. It is always best to prepare in advance for these issues and keep medication on hand to tackle the issue as soon as it arises. For todays article we will focus on Trichomonas Gallinae (Canker).

Trichomonas Gallinae is a parasite that occurs in most all areas of the world and across multiple species of birds including pigeons, doves, raptors, chickens, turkeys, parrots, and finches. Trichomonas Gallinae can be a mild or severe infection, if left untreated a bird may not be able to fend off the effects of the parasite and succumb to it within 4-18 days. Transmission of the parasite usually occurs from contact with other birds, directly or indirectly through an infected parent feeding their young, contaminated drinking water, feces, saliva, crop secretions of other birds or for birds of prey, eating an animal/bird infected with the parasite.

Trichomonas Gallinae can present as small yellowish plaques on mucus membranes that grow over the duration of the infection,  they have ben described by some as cheese like and can become necrotic, often there is a very foul odor. The plaques are usually detected in the oral cavity or on the edge of the beak, the tongue and in the choana and can completely block a birds esophagus and trachea if left untreated. Virulent strains of the virus can affect the birds liver and gastrointestinal tract. Fecal matter of the bird may turn green and the urates bright yellow which indicates its internal organs are infected also.

Best course of treatment is an antiprotozoal medication accompanied by Nystatin. An antiprotozoal systemically attacks the parasite while the Nystatin works by direct contact with it. Combined this is a very effective treatment if started as soon as possible. Administer the appropriate dose by your birds weight of the antiprotozoal medication. Nystatin you can add to feed for the needed treatment duration but at the beginning of treatment making a slurry with water and applying it directly the lesions helps attack the parasite more rapidly, often when the illness is detected your bird wont have a very good appetite. Tube feeding/crop needling of the nystatin slurry would be beneficial if they are not eating or drinking.


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