lorikeet scratching head a lot

by susi

i have noticed that my rainbow lorikeet has been scratching her head a lot could there be a problen or is that normal she is other wise happy and active. also we found a baby rainbow lorikeet in the park and i took it to the vet and they said it might have beak and feather deisease does that mean it will have it for life as there is no treatment?

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Aug 09, 2013
Scratching talk
by: Michael G.

Hi all
I have a number of rainbow lorikeets that come on my back deck for a feed of sun flower seeds and have done so for a number of years.I have noticed that when you talk to them, they always scratch their heads, but not at other times.
I was wondering if this was some type of communication characteristic. Does anybody know, or have noticed the same thing?

Jul 02, 2010
Lorikeet scratching and PBFD
by: The Avian Vet

There is no treatment for Beak and Feather Disease. If the bird is positive and showing clinical signs, it should be euthanized. IF it is not showing clinical signs, then it should be retested in 90 days. If it is negative then, it is is considered immune and can be released. If it is positive a second time, then it should be euthanized. Your bird could be scratching its head because it is molting, or has a skin problem or for many other reasons like an ear infection or something abnormal in the mouth, etc. Beak and Feather Disease is very contagious and since you have been exposed to PBFD, then you need to have your bird tested now.

Dr B

Jul 01, 2010
lorikeet scratching head a lot
by: Linda

OH PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE TELL ME YOU DID NOT BRING THIS BIRD HOME!!! Beak and Feather Disease is highly contageous and never goes away. The birds die with the disease. It eats away at their feathers, beaks, toenails and finally renders them unable to eat without a feeding tube inserted into their stomachs. They are constantly in pain and agony and their quality of life is almost nil.

So, please, get the bird out of your home immediately and take you other bird into the vet to have a test done for the Beak and Feather disease. I do so hope you have not brought the sick bird home because it is easy for all birds in a home to get this disease, and all are doomed. Have the Avian vet talk with you about treatment options if your bird has this horrible disease.

Here is a link about it:


If you have already brought this bird home, your other bird needs to see the Avian Vet immediately. Take the one you found to the vet because you cannot keep it unless your other bird also is infected now. NEVER, EVER BRING A SICK BIRD HOME TO YOUR OTHER BIRDS BECAUSE SOMETIMES THEY HAVE DISEASES LIKE THIS THAT LEAVE YOUR HOME COVERED WITH IT. Read the article and talk with your vet when you take your other bird in for exam. Please get the other bird out of the house immediately. If you have an outside building that is warm, put it there. If not, have it humanely euthanized by the Avian Vet. If both birds end of having this, you'll have to make plans to nurse them as their condition worsens which it will. DO NOT BRING ANYMORE BIRDS INTO YOUR HOME UNTIL IT HAS TESTED CLEAR FOR THIS DISEASE AS ALL NEW BIRDS WILL ALSO BECOME INFECTED.The disease also gets on clothing and shoes, so I suggest getting the "found" bird completely off your property.

I wish you God's Speed in this matter.

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