Avian Pox

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Avian pox is caused by a virus, avipoxvirus.  Pox is a major disease of wild turkey, but is also found throughout the avian taxa.  Signs of avian pox are wart-like or scabby lesions (dry pox) to unfeathered areas of the bird, such as the head and legs, or yellow to white moderately raised moist cheese-like necrotic areas (wet or diphtheritic pox) in the oral cavity.  These lesions can lead to impaired vision, poor respiration, and inability to feed.  Avian pox is highly contagious and can be spread to other birds through a blood feeding vector (mosquitoes), ingestion of scabs containing infectious material, or contact with contaminated surfaces.  Decontamination of areas known to come in contact with an infected bird, such as feeders, transport boxes, or birdbaths is recommended.  Please report die off events involving birds in Florida to Surveillance for Wild Bird Die-offs.



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