Ornithosis is an infectious disease that affects many bird species worldwide. It can also be transmitted to humans and other mammals. In Germany, ornithosis is a notifiable disease in pigeons.

Chlamydia psittaci. Chlamydia are small, non-motile micro-organisms that invade cells parasitically. Infection occurs via inhalation of stirred-up dust containing the pathogen, uptake of faecally contaminated feed or water, or else billing or feeding of squabs.

Symptoms of the disease:
Ornithosis occurs in 2 forms:

Recognition of the disease:
The disease can be demonstrated in dead pigeons by microscopic examination of a smear or impression ("klatsch") preparation of spleen, liver, conjunctiva or air sac that has first been stained using the method according to Stamp. In live birds, the pathogen is demonstrated in faeces, via a sink dab from the cloaca, or alternatively by serological identification of specific antibodies.

Similar conditions:
Infectious catarrh, Salmonellosis, Paramyxovirus infection.

Flocks are treated with OrniTySon, which has been successfully used for many years to control ornithosis. In order to maintain effective blood levels, administration of OrniTySon must not be interrupted during the 30-day treatment period.

Do not give the pigeons any feedstuffs containing calcium (e.g. grit) during treatment, since calcium binds chlortetracycline and thus reduces its efficacy.
No free flight for affected pigeons.
Remove bath water.