Puffy Chest

by Randy
(Portland Oregon)

I have jsut aquired a new Greenwing Macaw into our family, I am told he is 2 years old, and seems to be perfectly happy, great plumage and coloring, outgoing and active, eats well (maybe a little too well, lol), and potty is normal... but today i was playing with him and noticed his chest (below the crop, above the abdomen) feels Puffy as if ther is a large sack of air inside his chest.... he does not react in ANY way when i touch it or push on it, so i would have to say he has no pain associtated to it, any ideas what it might be?


Comments for Puffy Chest

Click here to add your own comments

Jul 08, 2014
Conure puffy chest
by: ladybird

I found out that my bird had a slight injury to his wing..something bit him and his air duct was affected. He cannot release the air that he brings into his body to fly and so it puffs up his fly ducts. What you can do is go to your veterinarian and he will poke a hole into the puffed chest and release the air. The bird will puff up again and again for a few days after every release until his injury is healed. After a few visits you will learn to help him. Good luck!

Aug 31, 2009
Green Wing Macaw with puffy chest
by: The Vet

This could be his crop with air. Not uncommon. It could also be an inflated air sac. This is something that you should have looked at by an avian veterinarian. Your bird should be checked annually for a well bird exam, papilloma lesions and be vaccinated for polyomavirus.

Dr B

Aug 27, 2009
by: Linda

I would suggest you make an appointment with an Avian Vet in your area and take him in for a checkup. It is customary to take new birds in to have them checked for infections, or parasites either inside or out shortly after bringing them home. Take Buster in at least once a year to make sure he is in good health. You will also need to use the Avian vet for toenail, beak and wing clipping every few(4-6) months. Only the PRIMARY FLIGHT FEATHERS SHOULD BE TRIMMED WHICH ALLOWS BIRDS TO GLIDE TO A STOP ON THE FLOOR OR GROUND INSTEAD OF FALLING LIKE A ROCK. THESE FEATHERS ARE THE LONG ONES AT THE END OF THE WINGS.

If he has any kind of air in or around his chest area, this is NOT normal and could be the beginning or middle of an infection that has not yet got him down.Birds do not get over their infections until they are treated by an Avian Vet. Never give your bird medicine that has not been ordered by an Avian Vet and that means any over the counter meds in pet stores and such. A diagnosis has to be made and the correct meds for that infection given, so a trip to the vet is always necessary.

You also need to be feeding him a high quality, organic pelleted diet like Harrisons. They use cold extrusion to make the pellets which leaves all the vitamins and minerals in the food instead of them being destroyed by heat. Most bird food, dog and cat food is made using heat extrusion, and renders these foods at least 50% bereft of vitamins and minerals. With Harrisons, you do not need to supplement with vitamins and minerals.

If your Macaw is presently eating only seeds, he needs to be changed over to pellets as an all seed diet is not healthy, and they do not eat this in the wild. In the wild, they have access to a wide variety of foods and the seeds are just a part of the diet. It does take time to make the change, and Macaws are usually easier than some of the other birds because they DO like to eat. Feed Buster NO people food, like food off the table. Salt and sugar are poison for birds, and fat is unhealthy, so feed your bird bird food and leave the people food for people.

Tracie carries the Harrison's products out here, and she also has a very delicious Birdy Bread mix which can help with the changeover and then be fed as treats a few times a week. Get the Sunshine Factor organic Red Palm Oil to go in it, and use just the egg whites and not the yellows in mix to keep fat content low.

So, get your new friend to an Avian Vet, feed him the best food you can find, and you will have a highly intelligent, loving and understanding friend for many, many years. The large Macaws can live into their 80's and have been known to live longer on occasion.

Post a picture of Buster when you have time and thank you for writing to us as we love to hear about people and their wonderful birds,

Click here to add your own comments