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Jack Swelstad

Green Bay, WI, United States


Eye problems

Eye Disease In Female Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker with eye disease

3 replies on “Eye disease in female downy woodpecker”

Matt says:

I have a female downy woodpecker that seems to have a growth on her left eye. She is very friendly and doesn’t seem to be in distress. It almost looks like a cone coming out of her eye. It’s not swollen or runny.

Jean Bryant says:

I also have a female downy that has obvious eye problem. She can’t close her beak. She’s been going back and forth from the homemade suit to a bare tree. Then visits the birdbath for water. She doesn’t seem to be afraid of me while I’m on the porch. She’s obviously in distress to not be afraid.
Not sure what to do.

Holly Faulkner, Project Assistant says:

Hi Jean, This bird may be sick. We recommend taking down and cleaning your feeders. The best way to prevent the spread of disease is to regularly clean them, and leave them down for a few days after you see a sick bird so that it is encouraged to disperse. If you’re particularly worried about an individual, please contact your local certified wildlife rehabilitator first before taking any action. They have the federal permits necessary to handle and treat wildlife, and can often offer advice over the phone. To learn more about sick birds and get tips on how best to clean your feeders, check out our Sick Birds and Bird Diseases webpage.

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