An Old Friend Returns

Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)

This male Chaffinch was a regular visitor to my feeder during the summer, but I hadn’t seen him for the past few weeks, until today. The last time I saw him I noticed he had a problem with one of his feet, which looked like it was covered in a growth of some kind.

Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)

It didn’t appear to bother him then, and it doesn’t appear to bother him now, despite how nasty it looks. Looking this up on the net I believe he is suffering from chaffinch viral papilloma, a virus specific to chaffinches only. It may have got infected through aย  small cut in the foot. Unfortunately there is no cure, but infected birds rarely die from it. I notice he does have trouble balancing sometimes, and it must be quite an irritation, but he seem well enough, and he is still quite friendly and allows me to get pretty close to him.

Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)

Photographs ofย  male Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs), taken September 2016, rear garden, Staffordshire. ยฉ Pete Hillman 2016. Camera used Nikon D7200, with Nikon 70-300mm telephoto zoom lens.

17 thoughts on “An Old Friend Returns

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  1. Interesting. I never saw anything like that on a bird before. I have a squirrel that has a small growth behind his right shoulder. He comes to eat at my bird feeder. Like your bird it does not seem to bother him and he seems to get about just fine.

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    1. Thank you, Pia. I have been lucky with this little chappy for he does allow me to get close to him to take his picture. Now the Green Finches are something else, for I only have to take one step out of my door and they usually just disappear into the trees!

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      1. ๐Ÿ™‚ I felt very fortunate yesterday, for as I sat outside to eat my lunch these two birds appeared one after the other, and were very close by. Needless to say, I didn’t get to finish my lunch until later ๐Ÿ™‚

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  2. OMG ๐Ÿ˜ฎ I never seen such kind of thing on bird, I’m sure he must be suffering from that irritation, feeling sad for him. That must be some extra weight for him! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you for you thoughts, Snehal. He sure must be a brave little thing, for he still pushes on with it regardless, and he seems fine. He doesn’t seem afraid of me, and will allow me to get within a few feet of him, and he eat well of my sunflower hearts ๐Ÿ™‚

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