Do Pigeons Carry Fleas [Facts and Information]

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Pigeons are the source of many diseases. People say they are the rats with the wings. The elegant appearance of the bird attracts many people; not only do they enjoy feeding the bird, but many keep it as a pet as well. However, the recent discoveries of the pigeon infecting humans with diseases are alarming. That’s why the most frequently asked question among the public is; do pigeons carry fleas?

The short answer is YES. A pigeon body serves as a host for the flea. Fleas suck the blood from their host to survive. Pigeons can spread flea to other organisms and humans.

The Pigeons living in the wild are the carriers of this pest. Many pests and bacteria can survive on the pigeon’s body. These pests can invade the residence and might bite humans, which can cause infection. To find more details about the pigeon flea, keep reading the article till the end.

Read Full Article: Do Pigeons Carry Diseases

Symptoms Of Flea In Pigeons

Fleas infest pigeons and many other birds just like it infests dogs and cats. The fleas can kill the bird as it causes anemia. When the fleas attack the pigeon, it becomes uncomfortable and restless. It will move a lot but cannot conduct daily activities as the fleas suck the pigeon’s blood making them tired and weak. In extreme cases, the pigeon cannot sleep with the flea infestation. 

The pigeon skin will become red. The pigeon feathers will have numerous wounds and will appear pink. In response to the constant irritation by fleas, the pigeon will start destroying its feather.

This feather-destructive behavior is known as preening. When pigeons become infested with pests, like fleas and mites, they indulge in over preening. Plus, you will be able to see the flea on the pigeon’s body through the naked eyes.

Can Birds Bring Fleas?

Birds are a carrier of multiple parasites. Both; wild and domestic birds are carriers of fleas, mites, and ticks. Birds can spread fleas to other areas. Fleas surviving on birds are brown. They are somewhat similar to the fleas living on cats and dogs.

Typically, the bird’s nest is a residing place for fleas. The larvae of the flea feed on the nesting material, and the adult fleas attach their head to the pigeon’s body and suck its blood. Fleas can cause anemia in birds.

Mature birds can survive and can get rid of them. However, younger birds will die when infested with fleas. 

Fleas are excellent jumpers and can cover miles by themselves. They can survive without blood for months.

What Diseases Can You Get From Pigeons?

Pigeons can transmit many diseases. According to the studies, there are forty-nine percent chances that a pigeon can infect humans. Pigeons spread diseases through their droppings. Usually, pigeon makes their nest on the rooftop of houses and buildings.

Therefore, more the nest more dropping and increase the chance of pigeon transmitted diseases. 

People become infected with these diseases while cleaning the dry pigeon scat. They can accidentally touch or inhale the dry pigeon scat particles, which will transmit the germ into the body leading to an infection. Pigeon scats can cause histoplasmosis, cryptococcosis, and psittacosis in humans. 

Apart from the above-mentioned fungal diseases, pigeons carry many kinds of pests, fleas, ticks, mites, and lice. The pigeon pest can cause infections in humans, ranging from local infection to extreme anaphylactic reactions.

What Do I Do If My Bird Has Fleas?

A vet might describe pigeon flea as a minor issue. However, if you ignore this issue, it can cause you a disaster. You should never take pigeon fleas lightly, as they can spread around your house.

The flea spread from one bird to another every two to three months. Additionally, they reproduce rapidly. A flea egg can hatch within three days. 

An adult pigeon can survive with fleas, but fleas can kill a baby pigeon. Start with cleaning the birdcage thoroughly. If necessary, replacing, the cage will be the better option. Then spray disinfectant all over the area. I recommend you to wear gloves while cleaning as fleas can bite humans.

To get rid of flea from the bird, take it to the vet. The vet will prescribe the medication for your bird. Plus, make sure that your bird drinks a lot of water and place the birdcage in direct sunlight. Sunbathing is done by many wild birds to get rid of fleas, lice, and ticks.

Do Pigeon Fleas Bite Humans?

Absolutely, pigeon fleas bite humans. The flea bite can cause itching and redness. The bite mark of the pigeon flea is one millimeter in diameter and causes a rash. You can identify flea marks as two to three flea bites are clustered together. If the flea bites more than two to three times a day, it can cause severe infection.

Fleas are active at night during the day fleas hide in dark places such as inside furniture and carpets. Fleas tend to bite humans when they are sleeping. The flea bite marks are typically seen on the lower leg but can be all over the body.

In 2004 a married couple in Columbia showed up in hospital with severe allergic reactions all over the body. Initially, doctors diagnosed it as a reaction to mosquito bites. After multiple diagnoses, a team of physicians visited the house to find the cause of the allergic reaction.

They found several nests with a flea infestation in the attic. The fleas were crawling down into the main house through the attic pipe and were biting the human, causing an allergic reaction. 

How To Get Rid Of Pigeon Fleas

It is necessary to get rid of pigeon fleas. The fleas are dangerous not only for birds but humans and other animals. The steps given below will guide you in getting rid of pigeon fleas.

Step#1. Locate The Origin

To get rid of fleas from your house, you must locate their origin. If you do not own any pet bird, chances are there might be a nest in your home. Thoroughly look all-around your house to find a nest. Usually, pigeons build a nest on the upper portion of the homes, like attics or rooftops. 

Step#2. Get Rid Of The Origin

First, get rid of the nest. When there is a dead bird, discard it properly. 

Step#3. Cleaning

The next step is to put all your household fabric items in a washer, including carpets and cushions. Then thoroughly vacuum the entire house and spray pesticide. If necessary, call pest control to help you get rid of fleas.

Conclusion

Pigeons carry several types of pests, fleas being one of them. The fleas live on the pigeon’s body and suck its blood. The source of the flea is usually the nest. The flea larvae survive on the nesting material, and the adult flea attaches itself to the bird.

The pigeons infested with the flea are weak and tired. The mature birds can fight the infestation, but young birds are vulnerable and can die from this attack.

Fleas move one host to another after every two to three months. When fleas cannot find the host, they can attack the homes and hide inside the dark spaces. Fleas cannot live on the human body, but they can bite, causing an allergic reaction. It is better to call pest control to get rid of the fleas from the house. 

References

Journal of Parasitic Diseases

Oxford University Press

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