swollen nostril

by christos

African Grey - swollen nare

African Grey - swollen nare

African Grey - swollen nare


I have had an African Grey for approximately 6 years, however the last 6 months he has his nostril swollen. Unfortunately, in Greece I am not able to find a vet for birds so I am asking for your help.
His diet is mostly a mix of seeds, he does not sneeze, eats well, speaks and looks ok.
After having send some photos to a person in the Athens that has knowledge on birds (but not a vet) he suggested me to do two things.
Firstly, give him an antibiotic treatment for a few days. (Which I did a month ago)
Secondly, clean his nose with warm chamomile by robbing gently a cloth. (Which I am doing for almost a month) to remove anything stack in his nostril as he told me.
I attach and a few photos

Please tell me your opinion, what it might be and what I can do. As I wrote there is no vet as far as I know in Greece and especially in my town Patras to have him examined, so your respond will be of great importance to me.

PS: as I read in the internet I am thinking to change his diet to Harrison?s pellets, what do you think for this also?

Thanks in advance

Comments for swollen nostril

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Mar 28, 2011
Bird with swollen nares
by: The Avian Vet

Yes, you should change his diet to Harrison's. Pellets provide a complete and balanced diet. One major issue that is compounding your birds problem, if not causing your bird?s problem, is vitamin A deficiency. However, simply supplementing vitamin A is not going to balance the diet. Many other nutrients (approximately 35) are missing from a seed diet, and will lead to other nutritional-related health problems. The most important thing you can do for your bird at this time is to get him on a better diet. Harrison?s is the best; you can also feed Roudybush. Both of which can be purchased online.

Cleaning the nares will help to make your bird more comfortable. Use only warm water. The chamomile is not going to help, but it will not hurt either.

The swelling in the nare could be a granuloma caused by vitamin A deficiency. The only treatment is vitamin A supplement injections, available on though a veterinarian. The nare may also need to be flushed and curetted to remove the granuloma. This may also be complicated by infection. It is important to find out what is causing the infection in order to determine which antibiotic will be effective. Over the counter antibiotics are not recommended because they are never strong enough and their spectrum of activity is not appropriate for most if not all avian infections. Incorrect antibiotics are going to mask the disease symptoms at best, and are likely not going to treat this disease.

This could also be caused by a fungus know as Aspergillus. This is a nasty disease and requires specialize medications and extensive long term treatment. Often the cause is from using corn cob bedding or other litter in the bottom of the cage. However, it is a ubiquitous organism and can be found in may places.

Your bird has a serious condition that cannot be diagnosed and treated at home or by someone over the internet. He needs direct medical attention as soon as possible by a qualified (avian veterinarian).

Dr B
Find an Avian Vet

Mar 28, 2011
swollen nostril
by: Linda

Christos, your bird's nostril may be swollen because of either heat or air conditioning in your home. Here in the states, birds' nostrils will become a little swollen from time to time from the dry heat. If your bird is lethargic or has lost appetite, then he has to be seen by an Avian Vet. There is a link on this site for help in finding one. Hopefully, you are not in need of one.

Your idea about changing bird from seeds to pellets will save your bird's life in the long-term because all seed diets are very low nutrition. The change takes times, so here is a link for an article about it written by Avian vet on how to go about it:

Switching Birds to Pellets article

It does take time and food has to be refrigerated as it has no preservatives. Follow their feeding instructions including what kind of veggies are best to feed along with Harrison's. Take out and let it warm up to room temperature before feeding. Never feed cold food to your bird.

Do not give your bid any more antibiotics as these can and do kill birds. Unless you KNOW what is wrong by having bird diagnosed by avian vet, you will do more harm than good, so no more over the counter meds. Use the find an avian vet help on this site and try and find one within a reasonable distance from you if possible.

Thanks for writing and keep us posted,


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