Lovebird's Thinning Feathers Around Eyes

by Linda
(Birmingham, AL)

I have a Lovebird whos feathers around his eyes appear to be a bit thin... I wasn't sure I really noticed it at first (or if his feathers just look thinner b/c he is a light color) but my sister confirmed it. His feathers seem thinner and maybe a little rugged on the inside of his eyes (between his eyes and beak). I have two lovebirds - they are caged seperately but in the same room. they are let out at the same time and play together. The other lovebird seems fine. I do have another bird that is new to the gang. right now he is in a seperate room in quarantine - he has been there for a little over 2 weeks. i wash my hands and change clothes between handling of the new bird and the lovebirds. he new bird - a budgie - was rescued by one of the vet techs at my avian vet and i adopted him from the vet. the new bird lived free until he was caught and rescued and then lived for a few months at the vet.... i do have a vet appointment for both my lovebirds on monday b/c neither of the avian vets will be in until then...just want to know what some of the causes could this somehting that can wait until monday?....

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Oct 17, 2009
Lovebird thinning feathers
by: The Vet

Yes, it can wait until Monday. Thinning of feathers can a nutritional issue. If your birds are not on pellets, then this would be my first differential. It can be age related. I see this in lovebirds that are over 10 years old sometimes.

It could be associated with poor lighting. I recommend that birds have full spectrum lighting, and occasionally be exposed to unfiltered (through glass) sunlight.

Excessive "wear and tear" on the feathers can also be the cause. I see birds that play hard or rub their heads on toys or cage bars and this will happen to them.

You should keep your appointment and have your avian veterinarian give them a thorough exam and maybe do some blood work. Please let me know what they find.

Dr B

Oct 16, 2009
Thinning Feathers
by: Linda

Yes, this can wait until Monday, and could be either a result of age or a possible parasite. I would expect the little budgie was checked out thoroughly at your vet's for either infection and/or parasites.

It is a good idea to go ahead and take your lovebirds on in though as you never know, and your approach is what I recommend. Take them to vet and rule out infection or parasites before either gets too bad.

As for quarantine inside same house as other birds, this won't be as effective as another house or building. Most of us have central air and heat, and the air from all rooms is distributed to all rooms. What that means is that if a bird has an illness of the bacterial/viral nature, other birds in home will be open to getting the same thing. Parasites move freely between rooms though keeping birds in separate rooms will help a great deal. No contact helps even more. You have done as best you could, and without another heated building, you did ALL you could do.

Let us know how everything works out, and hopefully all is well in your birdland.


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