Presenting problem: Broken Blood Feather

Why is a broken blood feather an emergency? When the blood feather breaks, the feather shaft acts like a straw making the vessels bleed much longer than they would otherwise due to capillary action. The degree of blood loss can be significant, particularly in small birds. Use this video clip or article with still images to review the basic structure of the blood feather, key points of urgent care as well as follow-up care . . .

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Orosz SE. Anatomy of the integument. In: Altman RB, Clubb SL, Dorrestein GM, Quesenberry K (eds). Avian Medicine & Surgery. Philadelphia, PA: WB Saunders Co; 1997: 541-545.

Schmidt RE, Light foot TL. Integument. In: Harrison GJ, Lightfoot TL (eds). Clincial Avian Medicine. Palm Beach, FL: Spix Publishing; 2006:394-409.

To cite this page:

Pollock C. Presenting problem: Broken blood feather. April 4, 2011. LafeberVet Web site. Available at