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The Hidden Dangers of Bird Droppings

When you think of faeces related infections, you don’t necessarily assume birds will be the number one culprit. But bird poo can contain a whole host of nasty diseases, that can put your business and the public at risk from severe illness.

Bird droppings, especially those from gulls, sparrows and pigeons, serve as a hotbed for pathogens and are the main culprit behind the spread of bird related diseases.

Here, we look at the three most serious illnesses bird faeces cause, and how to keep your employees and customers safe from harm.

1. Psittacosis

This is an infection of birds caused by the bacteria Chlamydophilia psittaci and is common in parrots, pigeons, doves, parakeets, budgerigars and cockatiels. It can also affect ducks and in rare circumstances, chickens.

Transmission of the disease from birds to humans usually occurs through the inhalation of airborne particles from bird faeces and respiratory secretions, putting people like pet shop employees, zoo workers and vets at particular risk.

Psittacosis usually causes flu-like symptoms such as a headache and muscle aches, but in vulnerable people can lead to severe pneumonia and other respiratory problems. It is treated through a strong course of antibiotics and can take many weeks to recover from.

2. Bird flu

Bird flu is a potent viral infection that is spread from bird to bird. However, humans can catch it too, and since the first human case in 1997, H5N1 has killed nearly 60 per cent of infected people[1]. In rare circumstances, bird flu can be present in bird faeces and passed on to humans, which highlights the need to reduce the risk of contact between humans and bird droppings.

3. Histoplasmosis

Histoplasmosis is a lung infection caused by the Histoplasma fungus that is often found in bird droppings. Transmission occurs through inhaling air contaminated with the fungus spores and can cause either short term (acute) or long term (chronic) histoplasmosis.

Acute histoplasmosis is usually mild, but the chronic variety can spread throughout the body and become life-threatening.

As a business owner, it is likely that you’ll want to protect your employees and customers from the perils of bird droppings. By regularly using a professional cleaning team, you can help keep them safe while also reducing the risk of any litigation claims. At MCS Cleaning, we can clear away any bird droppings through safe and effective methods. To book in today, call 0800 6120437.



[1] https://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/flu-guide/what-know-about-bird-flu#1

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