The importance of prevention

The occurence of different infectious and non-infectious diseases can cause significant losses in pigeon lofts, including possible deaths, the costs of diagnosis, treatment, and the work put into treatment. Diagnosis and treatment, however, are in many cases difficult due to the complexity of diseases.

Generally it can be said that most diseases can be prevented by abiding the basic rules of housing, nutrition and disease control.

Besides the above mentioned factors, additional nutrients are available for prevention that support defense system of the animals. Furthermore, immunological substances and vaccines against certain infectious diseases can be used as well.

Against infectious pigeon diseases we can use commercial vaccines but inactivated colony specific vaccines may also be effective.

All in all, the most important thing besides the diagnostic examinations is to measure the environmental conditions concerning the loft. In order to prevent the outbreak of further diseases and to cure the diseases currently present it is beneficial if lab results are not only evaluated on their own but also in the context of housing, nutrition and epidemiological factors. This can lead us closer to the root of the problem and by the optimalisation of environmental conditions we can effectively fight against both infectious and non-infectious diseases.

Inactivated herd specific vaccines

  • Inactivated herd specific vaccine, or autovaccine is a vaccine completely adjusted to a certain loft.
  • The basis of the vaccine are the pathogens isolated from infected animals which are cultivated and inactivated in appropriate conditions. Then they are used for making a vaccine by adding the right adjuvant.
  • Besides vaccine preparation, the antimicrobial sensitivity of isolated pathogens can also be defined, so the loft may receive targeted treatment. By this not only money and time can be spared but the chance of resistence caused by the unnecessary use of antimicrobial materials decreases as well.
  • By the application of inactivated herd specific vaccines we can create an effective defence programme adjusted to the loft in both the holding and the contact holding. As the autovaccine is made of the pathogens causing diseases in a particular holding, a more effective protection can be acquired with the use of them than with commercial vaccines made of pathogens isolated elsewhere. This is a more cost effective way of protection even on the short term.