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Fenton, MI, USA
While doing my 2 day count I noticed a female cardinal with what appears is a disease of the eye. I am submitting photos of each eye
Hi Paulette, This bird’s eyes do not appear swollen and crusted, which is characteristic of Mycoplasma gallisepticum (House Finch Eye Disease). Our guess is that this bird may be having an abnormal molt, or perhaps suffering from a different ailment – losing feathers may also result from feather mites, lice, or an environmental or nutritional factor. Often in these cases, there is evidence of growths or a scabby coating on the skin, though it’s hard to tell if there are any on this bird – the skin looks normal enough at least on the right side of its face. It’s also not unheard of in Northern Cardinals to go completely bald. No one knows for sure what causes baldness in birds, and the condition has not been well studied. Fortunately, in most cases new head feathers grow in within a few weeks.
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