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Finch family disease

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Thanks Steve for the salmonella warning. In S. Mn we have been dealing with mycoplasmal conjunctivitis for the past two summers. The victims are house finches, it is an eye disease which will cause the bird to go blind and it will starve. It is spread by the birds touching the ports on tube feeders. I was originally told it would not spread to other birds and I have not seen it in goldfinches which use the same feeders. However, I've read there is now doubt about that since goldfinches and some grosbeaks are in the same family. If you see a finch with what appears to be a "blind" eye - disinfect the feeder-its the same procedure(mixture) as for salmonella. If you see two or more infected- remove the feeders.

TIP - If your tube feeder has metal rod perches, an easy way to get them back in after cleaning is to put the rods in the freezer for 20 min, metal contracts and they should slide right in - if not a dot of cooking spray works too.

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