08 July 2014

Bird Health - MBD in birds

Metabolic Bone Disease is the most common nutritional disease in juvenile birds. Emma from Vetafarm spends some time talking about symptoms, and ...

hi there I'm Emma from better phones

today we are going to take a quick look at the most common nutritional disease in birds metabolic bone disease many people have heard of this disease but few people have heard of it related to birds metabolic bone disease or MBD as it is referred to has always been known as a calcium deficiency in reptiles we now know that it is not just a calcium deficiency and not just in reptiles in fact vera farm estimates that approximately 75 to 80 percent of juvenile birds that have been seen in our clinic were suffering from MBD this is an alarming statistic and one that vet affirm has been working hard to change but what is MBD put simply metabolic bone disease is an imbalance of nutrients in the diet the main imbalances occur from a calcium to phosphorus ratio and a vitamin d2 magnesium ratio most of the problems associated with MBD start in young animals as their rapid growth demands high levels of nutrition MBD is a 100% human afflicted disease it is not hereditary or contagious humans caused this disease a disease that will eventually kill your bird how do you

know if your bird has MBD well there are many symptoms of this disease and some of them are quite severe bone fractures and breaks bent legs and wings spine and keel twisting inability to fly and poor egg production as severe as these symptoms are MBD is treatable in most cases and more importantly preventable in order to treat and prevent metabolic bone disease the diet must be balanced it is the only way to treat and prevent this disease a balanced diet contains vitamins minerals calcium amino acids proteins and fats in their natural environment birds feed on a broad range of foods to get the balanced nutrition that they need these foods include fruits nuts vegetation insects pollen and selected seeds to replicate this diet in captivity is very nearly impossible unless you have a tropical rainforest growing right in your backyard seed is still the number one fruit of choice for captive birds and it is the food we see the most problems start from a typical bag of seed contains fats and carbohydrates with miniscule amounts of anything else this is when MBD occurs the diet is now unbalanced so seed

doesn't contain the balanced nutrition your bird requires how do you ensure your bird is receiving adequate nutrition the use and popularity of formulated diets that is pellets has increased dramatically in the last 10 years formulated diets contain all the aspects of a balanced diet without you having to use guesswork they now come in different shapes sizes colors and flavors ensuring you will be able to find one that your bird will love and more importantly will meet their particular dietary needs there are many brands of pellets available now but quality can vary pellets are only ever as good as the ingredients used in them look for extruded diets that are made using fresh Australian ingredients and are formulated by qualified nutritionists you can trust or better yet by nutritionists and avian vets if pellets are not something you wish to use or you have tried unsuccessfully to change your Birds diet from seed all is not lost there are now many supplements available including vitamins minerals and calcium that you can add to a seed diet the most important thing to

remember is a seed diet alone is not adequate fruit and vegetables fresh greens in particular are a great source of vitamins and also provide stimulation for your birds but freshness is absolutely critical we need to remember that vitamins are fragile they are rapidly destroyed by sunlight oxygen and moisture your fruit and vege are exposed to all these elements in your bird's cage or Avery so the use of supplements from a trusted manufacturer are important additions along with fruit and veg if you're feeding seed rather than pellets thanks for watching and remember with the right diet and care your birds will live a long and happy life free of MBD and with fewer visits to the vet see you next time you