fits and nervous disorders. The virus varies considerably in potency - only the very mild strains are found in Australia at present. The biggest source of danger to our wildlife is through illegally imported parrots.
It is easily transmitted to humans as an air-borne disease. Symptoms include severe headaches, and conjunctivitis. The incubation period is 1 or 2 days and recovery (with treatment) is spontaneous. Those strains of NVD at present found in Australia, do not appear to cause disease in humans.
A typical method of spreading the disease is illustrated in the case of the Loveday Prisoner of War camp during World War II. The inmates came down with sudden diarrhoea, abdominal pain and fever. The cause was crows feeding on dead sheep. The crows defecated on the roofs of huts, and the
bacteria eventually salmonella. Always
got into the rainwater wash your hands before
tanks. Contaminated preparing food.
Do you wash bird dishes in the kitchen sink where you prepare your meals?
You can become infected by inhalation of the bacteria or by consuming food and water that has become contaminated. Bird droppings are proven sources. Mycobacterium avium is only rarely found in humans and its effects are relatively mild form of respiratory disease. Mycobacterium tuberculosae from humans can occur in birds, but again, only rarely.
Erysipelas (Erysipelothrix rhusipathiae)
Found largely in turkeys, ducks and budgies with eye disease, but is not limited to that list. It can be contracted from the flesh of dead animals or contaminated soil around dead animals. In humans it appears as a generalised illness, with skin lesions and joint disease. How do you dispose of your dead birds? Don't bury them!
Fungal infections are generally caused by the inhalation of spores. The particular one in relation to birds is aspergillosis. The fungus is present in the debris on aviary floors (eg. mouldy hay) and spores
are present in the dust. respiratory symptoms
Symptoms include headaches, visual disturbances, skin lesions and
This is most dangerous to unborn children (foetus). Women affected in early pregnancy could have
babies that are blind or mentally retarded. Adults may be symptomless or only mildly ill. uncooked beef or having contact with infected cat excreta can expose people to the germ.
Hygienically run abattoirs are very low risk but "home kills" where a knife could easily slit an intestine, are potential causes of infections.
Even with dead birds, use gloves when handling, and don't even attempt to do autopsies at home.