What to do about blood feathers on a Sulpher Crested Cockatoo?

by Steve Hawkes
(Shelton, WA)

Fancy Face

Fancy Face

I've had Patagonian Conures, Amazons, cockateils and parakeets but I've never had to deal with a large cockatoo and this type of issue before. I've heard so many different stories regarding blood feathers and whether or not it's a dangerous or painful situation. Please help. If I need to pluck the blood feathers, is it painful for the bird and will it continue to bleed?

Comments for What to do about blood feathers on a Sulpher Crested Cockatoo?

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Jan 01, 2010
clarification
by: Steve Hawkes

Oh and I just did a bit more research and figured out she's not a sulpher crested, she's an umbrella.

Jan 01, 2010
clarification
by: Steve Hawkes

The feather isn't broken, it just has blood in it, otherwise she is quite healthy and very loving. I do believe she is beginning to moult though and that may be part of the reason for the blood feathers.

Dec 31, 2009
What to do about blood feathers on a Sulpher Crested Cockatoo?
by: Linda

THIS IS AN EMERGENCY SITUATION, SO GET TO THE NEAREST EMERGENCY ANIMAL FACILITY. BROKEN BLOOD FEATHERS HAVE TO BE PULLED OUT WITH A PAIR OF NEEDLE-NOSED PLIERS TO STOP THE BLEEDING. Just have someone wrap bird in towel and hold the bird where it cannot bite or move its wings, hold the feather, place the pliers above the break where it is bleeding, and pull straight out or down. Pull feather out exactly like it is growing into the body. DO NOT BEND IT, JUST GET A GOOD GRIP ON IT AND PULL STRAIGHT OUT. If you have not already done this or taken bird to a vet, your bird will bleed out, and nothing can stop the bleeding, so I hope you have already taken care of this.

These feathers DO NOT want to come out as they are new blood-filled feathers, so you must give it a firm pull in order to get it out. Old feathers come out easily, new blood feathers take a good firm yank to get them out. The blood will well up some after feather is removed, and will coagulate quickly, so do not be worried.

If your bird loses too much blood, she will need it replaced and will probably be in hospital for a few days after that. Blood loss is very dangerous, and your bird may die depending on how much blood has been lost.

I hope you have already taken emergency measures because this a life threatening situation.

For ANYONE reading this, follow the above instructions if this ever happens to your birds. If you don't move quickly, your bird will die from blood loss, so have the needle-nosed pliers as part of your bird tack just in case. It hurts the birds to have these feathers pulled, so make sure whoever is holding bird has it wrapped in a towel and has a firm grip on the birds body while putting two fingers around head and on jaws from the back to keep beak closed. This won't take long if you move quickly, and STAY CALM AS YOUR BIRD WILL SENSE YOUR PANIC AND BE MUCH HARDER TO CONTROL AND BLEED MORE AS A RESULT. NEVER PANIC, ALWAYS HAVE THE TOOLS YOU NEED ON HAND, AND MOVE CALMLY AND AS IF YOU KNOW EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT. I hope this reaches you in time, I really, really do!

Linda

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