Birds

Lineolated Parakeet | Vet Visit | Rhinolith | Nose Stones

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Lineolated Parakeet Goes To The Avian Vet Clinic | Merlin was looking a little sick and I noticed his breathing was laboured and his nares were swollen so I took him to the vet. The vet took out an infected piece of debris from his nares and flushed them.
It’s called Rhinolith or nose stones. He had labored breathing because of his plugged nare. He should be able to breath better now but may have a permanent wheeze. Merlin will be on antibiotics ( Baytril) for 14 days. He will have a permanent enlarged nares. It may shrink a little bit but his left nare will always be larger than the right side.
He was feeling better the next day, but still a little sore.

Information:

A rhinolith is an accumulation of debris in the nose that hardens.

Birds don’t have nostrils but instead have nares. That may be semantics since the dictionary definition of those 2 terms is pretty similar (or the same depending on the dictionary!).   In general, I’ve always heard people use the word nostril if there is a fleshy protuberance (otherwise known as the nose) and naris for just an opening into the head. Regardless, we use the term nares (plural) or naris (singular) in birds.

Just behind the opening – whatever you want to call it – is a hardened flap of keratin called the operculum. This flap is sometimes mistaken for foreign material. It should be smooth and dry. However material can accumulate between this flap and the tissue on either side. This build-up can distort the tissue and even cause permanent damage to the bone.

What Causes This?

Quite a few things can result in a rhinolith – bacterial or fungal infections, hypovitaminosis A (or too little Vitamin A in the diet), foreign material or poor air quality.

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