Trichomonosis, a disease in birds caused by a microscopic parasite has killed up to an estimated third of greenfinches and a third of chaffinches in the UK. Trichomonosis is common throughout feral pigeons and doves with up to 80% carrying the parasite. The columbid parasite jumped the species barrier from pigeons and doves into garden birds such as greenfinces and sparrows. Since then, outbreaks have been seen every year during the late summer and autumn. The pandemic started in the UK but has now spread to Scandinavia and northern continental Europe.
If trichomonosis is suspected and dead or ill garden birds are found, the RSPB advise to temporarily stop feeding birds and carry out basic cleaning of feeders, surfaces where birds may rest and areas where they can obtain water. This is designed to stop the parasite spreading. Further information can be obtatined by visiting www.rspb.org.uk and www.wildaboutbritain.co.uk
The University of East Anglia contacted Norfolk & Norwich Pest Control recently to confirm they have identified the genetic strain responsible and are trying to find its source in a range of pigeons and doves.
If you are concerned about feral pigeon infestation at your home or business call us to discuss a solution on 01603 905530.