Q. Parrotlet is vomiting white mucus although eating well he is very sleepy and lethargic. He is blinking a lot. Approximately 14 weeks old

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A. I recommend getting your bird seen by a vet. When birds display any signs of sickness it can already be quite serious. He could have a bacterial, fungal or viral infection, parasites or a condition called Psittacine Proventricular Disease.

Proventricular Dilatation Disease is a disease of the nervous system and digestive tract of birds. Some birds may only show signs of nervous system disease, others will show signs related to the digsetive system. To understand this disease, one needs to know more about the digestive system in birds. The proventriculus is the glandular stomach, directly connected to the esophagus and the place where gastric juices are secreted. From there, food is passed to the ventriculus, which is the muscular stomach or what most people know as the gizzard. In PDD, the nerves that supply the muscles of the proventriculus, ventriculus, and other parts of the digestive system are affected. As a result, the food does not pass through the organs as it should. Birds with PDD are unable to absorb nutrients due to the destruction of gastric motility and secondary improper digestion. It is now believed that PDD is associated with an avian bornavirus infection. The signs of the disease are caused by the virus as well as the reaction of the body's immune system against the virus.

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