Atlanta  Pigeon Convention  25th - 28th October 2012  

New possibilities for health control in pigeons.

The nature of keeping racing pigeons make them exposed to infections on a weekly basis.  We have had few possibilities to discover infections and monitor the health, but looking for signs of disease. The weakness using this approach is that infections can not be discovered before the animal get obviously sick. Also many diseases resembles each other.

The way to monitor the health has so far been difficult. Many fancier therefore give their pigeons a “blind preventive cure”, like giving antibiotics for a few days. 

Using professional veterinary services make sense, if the veterinarian has good knowledge about pigeon diseases. Unfortunately very few vets have sufficient knowledge about pigeons. A health care program may exist of regular loft visits, and testing of a number of birds, preferably 10% of the birds should be tested for the most frequent disease, like trichomonas swabs from the crop, worm eggs and coccidia from the droppings, and Salmonella. The chance for success using a “blind cures” is very low. Especially if the pigeons are not sick. This because if there is no symptoms, it is impossible to guess what sort of infections the pigeons are carrying. So the chances are very high that the medicine or cure given have no positive effect at all, but contrary, may be an burden for the birds. Most medicines are toxins, and the pigeon need to detoxify the drug, and then excrete it via the droppings or urine. Many drugs, especially antibiotics do also interrupt the normal bacterial “flora” in the gut, making life easier for viruses and fungus. Blind cures may therefore be the cause of many failures by fanciers. The risk of “blind cures” may be bigger then the possible benefit. If you could know what infections your pigeons carry, would you then do what was needed to stop it develop and spread? The smart fancier would for sure do so, if possible because it would save a lot of worries, money, and time.

The development of new fast tests to identify infections, give the breeder and fancier a totally new possibility to monitor and accurately diagnose many of the most common pigeon diseases. The fast tests are build upon immunology, tiny molecules pigeons and other animals produce wteh they are attached by infections. Certain white blood celles are experts in producing “specially made“ immunoglobulinse Y shaped molecules that stick to the bacteria they are made for. When such immunlglobulines are isolated and planed in a paper strip, combined with some gold molecules, they will react if a special bacteria is coming along, They will change color. The principle of the tests is that the immunoglobulies targeted towards for instance Pigeon Adenovirus on a test strip. If such virus is present in the test material that is dripped on the test stripe, there will appear a colored stripe across the test strip.  It is essential that the tests do react only with the bacteria or virus we are looking for, and then the number of this sort bacteria don't need too be very high. The tests must be  sensitive, but also very specific.

As a veterinarian I have worked on this concept for many years. Making reliable tests has taken a lot of time, and a lot of skills. The AvianLabs test are developed together with several “bio-tech” companies, who are involved in product development, quality control, and testing. AvianLabs works close with breeders, fanciers, scientists, veterinarians, pigeon product suppliers, and others who know contribute to reliable, fast and cheaper tests .

The following tests are already available

Salmonella typhimurium

Pigeon Adenovirus

Paramyxovirus

Chlamydia psittaci

Giardia lamblia

Candida albicans

The following tests are under investigation / development

Avian Circovirus

Pigeon Trichomonas / Canker

More tests will be developed as demand and funds is available.


How to use the tests:

Thee examples

A fancier have a apparently healthy loft with relatively few problems, good breeding results and all over good returns, but fail to win races. Because he is a eager and ambitious  fancier he get 10 salmonella tests, to start with. He took samples from some “suspicious” pigeons, and some collective samples from the floor in some of the rooms. 7 tests turns out to be positive while 3 are negative. It is clear that his loft is infected.

So what to do?

I advised the fancier to carry on with the breeding until the end. In the autumn he stop breeding and flying, and take away all the birds not really needed for netx year of breeding. He keep only 20 pairs left. These pigeons will be treated with 1000 mg enrofloxacine / gallon of water for 20 days. At day 7, some of the pigeons are tested again, to see if the Salmonella bacteria are gone, or at least has declined in number (you will then give a negative test result, or only a very weak positive reaction). If the tests stat positive, the bacteria are not killed off, and another antibiotic must be tried.

At day 10, the pigeons one-by-one taken to a disinfection bath (10 ml Citromed/gallon) and the legs and tail is soaked. The pigeons are then moved over to a newly build “camp”, a pen made with wire mash floor and sides, but a fixed roof and plastic on the most weather exposed sides. The pigeons must be kept in this pen the rest of the treatment, and another 2 month or so. During this the pigeons get Citromed or EcoTonic (or both) in the water to reduce the risk of reinfection. The old loft is stripped for loos parts inside, also test boxes and perches, then cleaned as good as possible, then flamed on the internal surfaces, then disinfected with bleach or other strong disinfectant, and finally repainted.

Also outside areas must be inspected to look for bacteria. Especially roof gutters and ponds may contain salmonella bacteria.


Is the treatment for Salmonellosis in your pigeons effective?

Many strains  Salmonella typhimurium are resistant to many sort of antibiotics, so unless you test the bacteria, it is hard to know if the treat

ment will be effective or not.
A way to test this your self, is to use an Avianlabs test strip, to monitor if there are still Salmonella in the droppings some days out in the treatment.
As you can see in this picture: 

The upper test cassette shows two stripes over the test strip. This clearly indicates that the there is Salmonella typhimurium in this test material. This is called "the test is positive" (meaning: What we are looking for, in this case Salmonella, is found...)

You can also see the round hole where the test material (diluted dropping) is deposited.

The lower test cassette shows only one stripe, indicating that there is no Salmonella present in this test material.

This photo is from a flock eith Salmonella, and we wanted to be sure we choose for the right antibiotics.
We therefore gave some pigeons Baytril, and some other in another room, got Tribrissen. Both sorts of antibiotics are often effective against Salmonellosis.

But in this case the pigeons who got Baytril become free after 3 days of treatment (shown by the lower test cassette, where no Salmonella is longer presnet), but the pigeons who got Tribrissen ( a sulfa / trimetoprim medicine)  Salmonella were still prenent in the droppings after 3 days.

So knowing that Baytril was effective, this antibiotic will be used for the full length treatment (200 mg pure enrofloxacine per liter of drinking water for 20 days.)
At the same time the pigeons will be moved to a clean loft half way the treatment.
There they will also get Citromed (grape fruit seed extract) in the water for a few weeks after the treatment is terminated....

Much success with the treatment and monitoring...

 Avian Chlamydia psittaci Antigen


Intended use: Detection of Avian Chlamydia psittaci Antigen

Specimen: Avian cloaca or ocular secretions

Sensitivity: >90%

Specificity: >95%

Reading time: 5-10 min

Shelf life: 18 months

Storage: 2- 30 °C. No freezing.

Packing size: 10 tests / box

 Principle: Sandwich lateral flow immunochromatographic assay

Advantages

l      Avian Chlamydia psittaci Antigen Test is a quick and easy diagnostic tool that can be performed during a consultation in just 5 minutes.

l    Avian Chlamydia psittaci Antigen Test can be stored for 18 months at room temperature, between 2 and 30°C.


Paramyxo Virus Antibody


Intended use: Detection of Paramyxo Virus Antibody

Specimen: Serum, plasma

Sensitivity: >95%

Specificity:>95%

Reading time: 5 - 10 min

Shelf life: 18 months

Storage: 2 - 30 °C. No freezing.

Packing size: 10 tests / box

 Principle: Sandwich lateral flow immunochromatographic assay

Advantages

l         Newcastle Disease Virus Antibody Test is a quick and easy diagnostic tool that can be performed during a consultation in just 10 minutes.

l       Newcastle Disease Virus Antibody Test can be stored for 18 months at room temperature, between 2 and 30°C.



Pigeon Adenovirus Antigen


Intended use: Detection of Pigeon Adenovirus Antigen

Specimen: Avian’s ocular and nasal secretions or cloacae secretions

Sensitivity: > 95%

Specificity: > 95%

Reading time: 5 - 10 min

Shelf life: 18 months

Storage: 2 - 30 °C. No freezing.

Packing size: 10 tests / box

Principle: Sandwich lateral flow immunochromatographic assay

 Advantages

l        Pigeon Adenovirus Antigen Test enables the detection of very low viral loads.

l        Pigeon Adenovirus Antigen Test is a quick and easy diagnostic tool that can be performed during a consultation in just 10 minutes.

l       Pigeon Adenovirus Antigen Test can be stored for 18 months at room temperature, between 2 and 30°C.



Giardia Antigen


Intended use: Detection of Giardia Antigen

Specimen: feces

Sensitivity: 96.2%

Specificity: 100%

Detection limit: 181 cysts / 100 μL of feces

No cross reaction with other pathogen of enteric disease

Reading time: 5 - 10 min

Shelf life: 18 months

Storage: 2- 30 °C. No freezing.

Packing size: 10 tests / box

Principle: Sandwich lateral flow immunochromatographic assay

Advantages

  • Giardia Antigen Test kit can accurately indicate the presence of Giardia antigen in the sample.
  • Giardia Antigen Test is a quick and easy diagnostic tool that can be performed during a consultation in just 10 minutes.
  • Giardia Antigen Test can be stored for 18 months at room temperature, between 2 and 30°C.





























































 

Make a Free Website with Yola.