Horror illness transforming UK pigeons into living zombies with vile symptoms

A monstrous illness is transforming British pigeons into living zombies.

Birds affected by the disease experience a raft of neurological symptoms including a violently twisted neck and trembling wings.

Pigeons who fall ill with pigeon paramyxovirus, also known as PPMV or Newcastle's Disease, also become rake thin, have green poo, walk in circles, often can't fly, and are reluctant to move.

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The disease is now feared to be sweeping through Britain as some bird populations on the island of Jersey have had to be euthanised.

An animal sanctuary warned of the "invariably fatal viral disease" and its horrific symptoms, which cannot affect humans but can cause conjunctivitis in those handling the sick birds.

A spokesperson for JSPCA Animal's Shelter on the island of Jersey in the Channel Islands said: "There has been an increase in the number of grounded pigeons coming into the JSPCA Animals' Shelter in the last few weeks, many of which have been showing neurological signs such as twisted neck, circling or are unable to stand.

"These are all signs of pigeon paramyxovirus, an invariably fatal viral disease that can affect pigeons, doves and poultry (where it is known as Newcastle's Disease).

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"It is a Notifiable Disease in captive birds (meaning that suspected cases must be reported to the authorities), but not wild birds," added the spokesperson.

"Sometimes they will also have injuries resulting from not being able to balance or fly well."

The shelter spokesperson said the illness has no treatment "and many birds die within a few days".

They added: "Any that do survive will continue to shed the virus and be a risk to other birds.

"The disease is extremely infectious and spread through faeces and other secretions.

"The virus can survive longer in the wetter, colder months, meaning clusters of cases are more common at this time of year."

According to the Gov.uk website the disease can be prevented by: "Vaccinating your pigeons against the disease – talk to your vet for advice (if you run pigeons shows or races, you must ensure any bird taking part has been vaccinated) and practising strict biosecurity on your premises."

And according to Bird Exotics Veterinary website: "The virus does not respond to treatment although supportive care by a veterinarian may reduce the severity of the disease and increase the chances of survival.


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