Signs of AI in Birds

Once a bird is infected, it usually takes 1-10 days before signs appear. That infected bird can spread the virus for up to 21 days to other birds. The best way to prevent the spread of disease is to know the signs of avian influenza and to respond quickly. 3

Birds may have a variety of different signs:

  • Inactivity, ruffled feathers, poor appetite, diarrhea

  • Decreased egg production, soft-shells or misshapen eggs

  • Swelling of the head, eyelids, comb, wattles and hocks

  • Cyanosis (dark blue color) of wattles, combs, and legs

  • Coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge

  • Sudden death

Comb Discoloration
Comb Cyanosis

Swollen Wattles
Swollen Wattles

These signs are similar to other poultry diseases, such as Exotic Newcastle Disease. Contact your local 4-H, county extension agent, or local/state veterinarian for immediate assistance if you observe signs of disease in your birds.