Clearing Crop?

Hi, I have several cockatiels. They are approximately 2 years old. I have had them since they were 2-3 months old. One I have had since it was a baby. It is hand-raised. Since I have had the cockatiel that is hand raised, it has always had very pink nares. It has always been very active and playful. One thing I have noticed that she does that the other cocktiels don't do, is occasionally she will tilt her head back and open her mouth and sit with it open, and while she is doing this, occasionally she will swallow. I have noticed her doing this not very often, but maybe 3-5 times in the last year.

I talked to an avian vet over the phone about the nares being pink, (the front desk, not the vet itself), and she said that as long as her behavior is normal, not to worry about it. She does not do the head tilting very often, but I am wondering if it is normal? She tilts her head back, and opens her mouth, and her throat is open, when she breathes I can hear a little wheezing sound, but only while her mouth is open. Never at any other time. Twice some clear liquid came out of one of her nares, and her eye got watery.

She has never had a discharge from her eyes or nares ever. Her droppings are normal. And she is playful and active. After that happens with her (head tilted back and mouth open), she swallows a couple of times and it is over. She goes right back to eating again. Like normal. What do you think? Do I need to take her to the Vet?

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Feb 16, 2011
Bird tilting head and watery discharge
by: The Avian Vet

Tilting the head back and swallowing: This sounds like a normal behavior they do to release pressure in their ears (Eustachian tubes).

Wheezing sound and discharge: You should take her in for an exam. She may be fine, but you should take her in to be sure it is not something serious.

Dr B

Feb 16, 2011
Clearing Crop?
by: Linda

Yes, take her to the vet. Anytime you see fluid coming from nostrils or eyes, this indicates an infection of some kind. Infections are highly contageous, so depending on diagnosis by Avian Vet, you may have to take your others in for exams as well. What one bird has, they all do, if they live in close proximity to each other. We recommend yearly visits for all birds because this is where problems can be quickly found, diagnosed and treated before things get serious.

Talk with vet about head tilting because this is not normal either. If you hear ANY wheezing, you are looking at an infection and the longer you wait, the worse it will be for all your birds.

Thanks for writing,

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