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Crop Obstruction


A foreign body obstruction and a blocked gizzard are similar. The first signs are an increased thirst and fluffed up appearance. Birds will develop a stomach ache and will lean forward on the perch. Droppings will have no faecal component and may be watery and appear clear or white. Birds may vomit and stop eating.

Symptoms appear suddenly, over a period of a day or two. It is important to recognize these symptoms early so treatment can start as early as possible. The likelihood of recovery is dramatically increased when the problem is treated early. If left untreated for long the chances of recovery are slim.

This is an emergency. Start by injecting a watery feed mix such as Kaytee Exact or Cream of Wheat directly into the crop (See this article: Feed Baby). The birds must be kept in a warm place and fed three times a day in an effort to flush the obstruction through. Antibiotics may be added to the feed mix.

A culture of the droppings may taken to treat concurrent infections and help identify any underlying cause. Success is noted by the re-appearance of a fecal component (green) in the droppings. If no fecal component is seen after three days of treatment, the likelihood of recovery is poor. It may not be possible to clear long-standing obstructions.

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