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Photo Submission

Submitted By

Pam McGovern

Effingham, NH, United States


I noticed this male purple finch flying around rather aimlessly. On closer look, I noticed both eyes appeared to be closed. In this picture, only one eye is closed, but my husband and I were able to walk right up to him and even when we were talking, he didn’t seem to notice us. This is the first time I have seen eye disease in any of my birds.When I lived in southern NH it was very common in the house finches.

I have 5 pairs of purple finches and am watching them all closely for signs of spreading (I may have a female with it now, too). I have been monitoring this male and it appears that the partially open eye is now fully open, so hopefully he is recovering.


Eye problems


Purple Finch With Eye Disease?

3 replies on “Purple Finch with eye disease?” says:

Carrot river_-grosbeakhad red eye. Woman shot 4 of them-said its just like wasting disease . Will the babies have that disease?

Chelsea Benson, FeederWatch Assistant says:

We have seen cases of eye disease in grosbeaks; however, it is NOT related to wasting disease. Eye disease is a bacterial infection similar to conjunctivitis. If a wildlife rehabilitator is willing to take in birds with eye disease, it can be easily treated and the birds can recover. Please tell this person, that killing songbirds is illegal. If you or your neighbors are feeding birds and notice eye disease, please take down your feeders and birdbaths, clean them with a diluted bleach solution, rake the ground under the feeders to get rid of droppings and discarded seeds, and leave your feeders down for a week. You can learn more about eye disease at:

Texas Bird Family says:

Yes, all birds except Rock Pigeons, House Sparrows, European Starlings, and Eurasian Collared-Doves are protected. Killing birds can result in 6 months in prison. It is a very serious crime to kill birds. Even sick birds.

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