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© 1991, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


This NebGuide discusses the most common respiratory infections in poultry, and includes steps to diagnose, prevent, and treat each.

Small poultry flocks are susceptible to a number of respiratory infections. Some of these produce extremely mild illness while others may result in a high number of deaths.

Regardless of whether birds are raised for meat, eggs, breeding or show purposes, respiratory infections result in decreased performance. They may also disqualify a bird for show, and pose disease hazards for other poultry on the same premises.

Respiratory infections in poultry have several causes, but outward signs may appear similar to the flock owner.

Since successful treatment and prevention of respiratory disease requires correct diagnosis, this NebGuide provides information on common infections to help producers understand the complex nature of these illnesses, and the need to seek qualified help in obtaining a diagnosis.