Greenfinches are at risk of disappearing from Britain 14 years after a deadly disease first hit the UK. The greenfinch (Chloris chloris) has declined by 64 per cent in the last 23 years and shows no ‘no sign of slowing down’, according to the 2019 Breeding Bird Survey. Experts say the main cause of the decline is a parasite that causes a disease called the Trichomonas gallinae.
The disease first hit the UK in 2006 and while little is known about its origin, experts believe it may have ‘jumped’ from pigeons or doves. The parasite causes infected birds to become lethargic, have fluffed-up feathers and stops them from being able to swallow food.
Source: Telegraph, 7 May 2020