Male guildion gasping and makes wet clicking scratchy sound

by Misty Deaton
(Oklahoma)

I purchased a pair of gouldian finches in Nov 2011. It was Feb 2012 that I realized my male was making a "scratchy" sound and shaking and stretching his head. He seemed to be fine otherwise. He was still continuing to eat and drink regularly. About 2 weeks after the male had his first symptoms the female began to become lethargic sleeping alot and remain fluffed up. I then chose to see an avian vet and he seemed to think it was respiratory and prescribed 1 drop of gentamicin in a nostril 2 times a day. After bringing my birds home the female died 2 hrs later and the male still remains with the same symptoms maybe even worsening. His symptoms seem to only include the scratchy sounds and stretching his neck as if it is hard to swallow. I have spoke to the vet but he seems to be uncertain as to what his diagnosis may be. Any suggestions and can you help us?


Hi Misty,

I am so sorry for your loss. The most likely problem sounds like air sack mites. A lot of vets don't know a lot about Gouldians. Please listen to your male tonight when all is quiet and he is sleeping. Air sac mites are known to frequently be a problem for Gouldians. They can be diagnosed if during his sleep, you can hear a clicking sound as he breaths. Were he my bird, I would treat him with a medicine called Ivermectin. If you have a nice pet store with a good variety of bird supplies nearby, ask them if they sell or can order it from a small bird supply company called Abba Products or ask your avian vet if he can get it and tell you what dosage and how to give it. Abba Products is a wondereful family run wholesaler of small bird products. If they don't ship to a pet store near you, I think they will ship to you directly or to your vet. They used to sell just the right dosage required and not a whole huge bottle. Please let me know how this turns out for you and your bird. Best wishes, Jeanie

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Dec 08, 2012
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coughing gouldians
by: DAN uk

Hi Jean, my treatment for air sac mites, is our cough medicine which has glycerin in it, any supermarket stocks it in the u.k, just a few drops in the water over a few days and bobs your uncle job done. mind you only once with new birds have i had to use this as i use baby sterilising fluid [milton]this keeps all germs at bay. all the best Dan

Thanks again Dan, Jeanie

Aug 05, 2012
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coughing gouldians
by: Anonymous

Hi jean, Just wanted to add my point of view to the question on the Gouldian coughing and clicking. If the bird room gets very dusty and the vents or windows are closed, they need to be open during the day. A closed in aviary can cause this problem. Just a thought. dan

Apr 09, 2012
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Male Guildion gasping and making wet clicking sound
by: Anonymous

I do have a canary and two spice finches in the same room but not the same cage. He (the vet) didn't mention anything about treating the other birds. Back to the male gouldian, although he has had the treatment w/ ivermectin he doesn't seem to be improving. Is this normal?

That is a question only your veterinarian can answer. I do not know the strength or the dosage or how your veterinarian administered the Ivermectin. There are several different methods. Please know that I am not a veterinarian so all that I can do is to tell you how I administered it to my flock.

I believe Ivermectin in the U.S. is a prescription animal medicine. I have heard that it is available in feed and grain or farm supply stores. I used 1% injectible Ivermectin. I took away the water in all the bird cages at night when the birds went to sleep. Early the next morning, the birds were quite thirsty. After shaking the Ivermectin and then adding 1 cc or 1 ml of the Ivermectin to 1 quart of drinking water which also needs to be well mixed or shaken. I would then put that mixture in very clean or sterilized water dishes or bottles. I would leave that mixture with the birds until the following morning unless the birds drank it all.
I treated all birds that lived in the same room at the same time and then again in exactly 14 days. This information is also published on the wonderful website, abbaseed.com under supplements.

Best Wishes, Jeanie

Apr 03, 2012
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Treatment
by: Anonymous

Yes he does make that crackling sound at night and I did go to the vet for the medicine. He gave him a dose and told me to return in 2 weeks for a second round of treatment. I will keep u posted. Thx

That is good news and yes your bird definitely will need another dose of the medicine in two weeks. Do you have other birds that live near this Gouldian? I am sure your vet told you to treat them too. Thank you for letting me know.

Jeanie

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