Bird Droppings Can Pose Serious Health Risks to Humans

Bird droppings are a breeding ground for disease-causing parasites. Not only can these organisms attack the substrata of a building, they can spread disease to humans. One health hazard that is a concern when dealing with bird guano is Histoplasmosis.

“Histoplasmosis is caused by a fungus (Histoplasma capsulatum) found primarily in the areas drained by the Mississippi and Ohio rivers. Both humans and animals can be affected. The disease is transmitted to humans by airborne fungus spores from soil contaminated by pigeon and starling droppings (as well as from the droppings of other birds ). The soil under a roost usually has to have been enriched by droppings for two years or more for the disease organism to reach significant levels. Although almost always associated with soil, the fungus has been found in droppings (particularly from bats) alone, such as in an attic.

Infection occurs when spores, carried by the air are inhaled — especially after a roost has been disturbed. Most infections are mild and produce either no symptoms or a minor influenza- like illness. On occasion, the disease can cause high fever, blood abnormalities, pneumonia and even death. In some areas, including portions of Illinois, up to 80 percent of the population show evidence of previous infection. Outbreaks of histoplasmosis have occurred in Central Illinois.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has reported a potentially blinding eye condition — presumed ocular histoplasmosis syndrome (OHS) — that probably results from the fungus. NIH estimates that 4 percent of those exposed to the disease are at risk of developing OHS.”—Illinois Department of Health

BirdMaster Bird Control Systems specializes in humane and environmentally friendly bird deterrent systems. They have been protecting historic and commercial buildings for over 20 years. BirdMaster protects buildings from the damaging effects as well as the health hazards associated with bird guano. Their systems do not harm bird or the environment.

Advertisements