baby with bulging eye

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Trishy
Posts: 435
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2008 10:25 am
Location: Wisconsin/Shell Lake
Martin Colony History: Colony started in 2009 with 2 pair.
Currently I have 3 gourd racks with 20 gourds. One gourd rack will be for sy arrivals only.
Bo Eleven gourds 20

baby with bulging eye

Postby Trishy » Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:37 pm

I found a baby on the ground about 1 1/2 hours ago. Picked it up and its' left eye was bulging out. It also has a small, crusty spot close to his other eye. Now the eye has gone back in the socket, and the bump is above the eye. Has anyone seen this before? I am guessing it was thrown out of the nest today, but don't know for sure. It looks to be around 3 weeks old, maybe slightly younger. There are no longer any rehabbers in this area, and I suspect if I put it back in the gourd, it will be tossed out again. I have it in a box for tonight, and have given it 2 crickets about 45 minutes apart. Looks to be underfed also. I have taken a couple of pictures with my iphone, but my computer is not recognizing it. If I can get the pictures on my computer I will post them. Any thoughts on this?
Trish H

cnevett27
Posts: 49
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2014 10:40 am
Location: Washington, MO
Martin Colony History: Hosting martins for about 5-6 years, keeping records back to 2014. Using all gourds-horizonal Troyers and Excluders
2017-25 pair, 106 fledged
2016 25 pair, 87 fledged
2015 24 pair, 70 fledged
2014 21 pair, 43 fledged

Re: baby with bulging eye

Postby cnevett27 » Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:54 pm

No expert on this, but wondering if this nestling experienced trauma to its eye, from being pecked, hence the crusty area near its eye. Do you have a "prognosticator" to check the babies growth and see where it is on weight? I would do supportive care...feeding crickets as often as it "gapes" for food. You can get live crickets at a petco, freeze them, then defrost as you feed with a forcep or you might beable to just touch the mouth with the insect and the bird will open its mouth. If you have any way to weigh the baby, you can keep track to see if it is gaining. It will be touch and go to see if the eye will heal. Then you will have to determine if the bird can see, using your hand to see if it can track. Meanwhile, maybe PMCA could help to see if there are any other colonies in your area where you could make contact to see if you could transition the baby to one of them that has similar age, or worse case scenario, a place to release if the bird is able to continue to grow on your feedings and appears to be able to see.(may take a couple of days for the eye to heal). I would think the PMCA could put you in contact with someone. Also try FB on the PMCA site there..very active. Thank you for caring for this little one...its not easy to do. HOpe this was of some help and some more experienced landlord will have better answers for you. Best of luck!

Barry Wallace
Posts: 27
Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2012 9:29 am
Location: (Wisconsin) Cumberland

Re: baby with bulging eye

Postby Barry Wallace » Mon Jul 09, 2018 5:27 am

Hi Trishy, have you tried Tammi's Wildlife Rescue in Fredric? Once the eye issue is addressed I think getting him back into a cavity with similar sized nestlings gives him the best chance for survival. Tammi's number is 715 491 2352.
Landlord since 1987

Trishy
Posts: 435
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2008 10:25 am
Location: Wisconsin/Shell Lake
Martin Colony History: Colony started in 2009 with 2 pair.
Currently I have 3 gourd racks with 20 gourds. One gourd rack will be for sy arrivals only.
Bo Eleven gourds 20

Re: baby with bulging eye

Postby Trishy » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:32 am

Thank you for the advice. Barry I have taken birds to her a couple of times, but last year when I called her she said she wasn’t taking anymore. I can call her again, as I haven’t spoken to her yet this year. Maybe she is taking them again. When I woke up this morning I remembered hearing a Martin sitting on the gourd rack yesterday making a call like they do when they talk to their babies. Guess I should have checked then, but didn’t think much of it at the time. I know that call from an experience I had 3 years ago where the whole nest fledged except for one runt I had to move to a gourd with similar aged babies. Adopted Mom came back daily to talk him into leaving the gourd. He finally did. I will try calling Tammi today.
Trish H

TheSmiths
Posts: 237
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 1:02 pm
Location: Western KY
Martin Colony History: Trying to attract PMs since 2004; began a more ernest attempt in 2014. Modified Trio M12K at 15' w/3 gourds beneath; multi-rack w/8 gourds mounted at 20'.

2018 — finally have 1 ASY pair & 1 SY pair in the Trio & 1 SY pair in a supergourd on the multi-rack. :D

Re: baby with bulging eye

Postby TheSmiths » Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:48 am

I don't want to sound like an alarmist but the description sounds like a bacterial contagion such as conjunctivitis (sometimes called "House Finch Disease") or a viral contagion like Avian Pox. It could be something else but it would be in the best interest of your colony to not put the nestling back in the nest. As you've mentioned, the adults know there is something wrong and will likely remove it again. If you have pet birds in your home or keep chickens, etc., make sure you thoroughly disinfect yourself before handling them, their housing, bowls, etc. Those illnesses are only contagious to birds so humans and non-avian species are safe.

Trishy
Posts: 435
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2008 10:25 am
Location: Wisconsin/Shell Lake
Martin Colony History: Colony started in 2009 with 2 pair.
Currently I have 3 gourd racks with 20 gourds. One gourd rack will be for sy arrivals only.
Bo Eleven gourds 20

Re: baby with bulging eye

Postby Trishy » Sat Jul 14, 2018 6:47 pm

Thank you very much. I was thinking along the same lines. A couple of days ago a wonderful person close by gave him a 2.5 hour ride to a wildlife center north of here. I am going to call them Monday to find out what is happening with the baby. At least he will have a chance for survival.
Trish H


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