A case of Pigeon pox is claimed to have been found in Ranchi. However the biggest consolation at this time of coronavirus is that pigeon pox is no zoonotic, which means this disease is not transmitted to human beings.
A noted veterinary doctor Ajay Kumar of Bhagwan Birsa Biological Park Ormanjhi, said, “A couple of days back an acquaintance of mine sent me a photograph of a dead pigeon in Ranchi where signs of pigeon pox were too evident.”
Dr Ajay said, “I have not personally come across any such dead pigeon afflicted with pox so far and my opinion on pigeon pox was based on the tell tale symptoms/ signs that I found on the carcass of the pigeon whose photograph was sent to me.”
“Pigeon pox is a viral infection. It is contagious among its species. Its infection cannot jump to any human being at all. Its infection is only intra afflicting which means afflicting pigeons only,” said Kumar asking people not to imagine anything bad for human beings in the back drop of this pigeon pox.
Ajay said a pigeon pox has no distant connection with any bird flu at all.
“It is a lock down period. Bird watching has gone up. People have now more time to see, which bird has come and perched on their roofs. Had this been not the lock down phase no one would have cared to notice the death of this pigeon and taken pains to shoot it with camera for diagnosis of the disease,” added Kumar.
Pigeons are either feral or pet. A feral pigeon is all free and has no owner and if it gets down with pox this feral pigeon is to fend for itself. Its self cure mechanism is its tool to battle this pox reminded Ajay.
Pigeons are gregarious birds and tend to live in flock.
Ajay said as pigeons have a flock of its own and an infected pigeon has the potential to infect other pigeons.
About the pigeon pox Ajay said, “It is caused by pigeon pox virus. Mosquitoes are the villains. Dirty water which the pigeon drinks trebles the risk of its getting infected with pox”
Pigeon pox has no history of afflicting the two most common birds sparrow and crow reminded this vet doctor. The pigeon pox strikes face, mouth and feet of pigeon most.
Ajay Kumar has an advice for the roof top families. The advice is to keep fresh water in a flat utensil and dissolve any higher antibiotic in the water so when a pigeon comes no matter infected or not infected this water if it drinks will be a health cover for it.
About the disposal of infected carcass of the pigeon Ajay said, “ The best course is to burn it. If cremation is not done then bury it too deep so that no other animal digs it out.”