PLEASE HELP --- Is this possibly Favus?


9 Years
Feb 11, 2014
Castaic, California
I've been dealing with skin issues with my flock for a couple of months now. At first I thought they were having eye issues, as the areas around the eyes were very crusty. At that time, I was applying Terramycin, but nothing improved. Then I started applying Vaseline to the areas, thinking it was dry skin, but after a couple of days it's back to the chalking/powdery white stuff.

I've recently been looking at pictures online and I was thinking it may possibly be Favus. If it is, I'm not sure how they got it. Can anyone tell me whether this is what I'm dealing with? If it is, I've read that I should apply athlete's foot cream on the areas. Applying athlete's foot cream around the eye area makes me so nervous. So before I do anything, please let me know your thoughts.

Are there any pills that I can give them that would get rid of it both internally and externally?

Here's some pics that I just took:

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Is there possibly a pill that can be given that will take care of this? Or do I have to treat with the Miconazole cream (or Lotrimin - athletes foot cream)? And if I have to do the cream, for how long? The study said that they did it twice a day for 34 days --- yikes!!! I just applied some cream to all of their faces, and it's not an easy task!
Sorry that this has been going on so long. Fungi are pretty much everywhere in the environment. Perhaps the antibiotics for the eye infection played a part in the cause of favus. I think applying clotrimazole (Lotrimin) or miconazole (Monistat 7) cream should only need to be applied once a day or every other day. I have one hen who has had a little white area of what I have suspected was favus on her pea comb, and I only put the cream on every 2nd or 3rd day. It clears up, and then I forget to keep using it , and it comes back. The hen in the third picture really looks like her case is a little more serious. A vet could do a skin scraping on her skin to look for the fungus, but it looks like favus.
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Here is a powder form Desenex Antifungal Powder, Cures Athlete's Foot

or Rubbing the affected areas daily with athlete’s foot ointment, or swabbing the spots with 2 percent iodine solution every other day should do the trick after about two weeks of treatment. Both medicines are available at any pharmacy. Ringworm fungus hates sunshine, so getting birds out of a dark shed and into the sunlight often cures favus without medicine.

When I use the iodine 2 percent I use a cotton swab or a cotton ball.
Thank you all so very much for your input. I was hoping it wasn't Favus, but that's the only thing that made sense. Too bad there isn't a pill that would make it easier that would get rid of it internally and externally. Since I had some of the athlete's foot cream (Lotrimin), I will just continue to apply that. It's so hard to work around their eyes. I went to Walmart to look for 2% Iodine, but they didn't have that -- instead they had something with a mixture of alcohol and iodine. Just didn't want to chance that. I may be able to find the 2% Iodine at a local pharmacy.

So here's my next question --- should I worry about their legs and toes also? If so, I can buy the spray type of Lotrimin and spray their feet. Let me know your thoughts.

Also, what about their coop --- am I supposed to do something to clean it. If so, what should I use on that? Their coop and run area have sand in the bottom; and their nesting boxes have pine shavings.

What a pain!
I don't think that favus affects the legs and feet, as far as I know. Most pictures of it are on the head, comb, wattles, ears, face, and sometimes the neck. General coop cleaning are probably all that is necessary.
I've been treating my flock with the athlete's foot cream (Lotrimin) now for 2 weeks (EVERY SINGLE DAY). I cannot tell you what a pain in the neck it is to do this. They wriggle so much that it's incredibly hard to apply the ointment -- so afraid of getting the stuff in their eyes.

So here's where it stands right now: One hen shows new feather growth, but the rest of them don't show any improvement yet. They all still show crusty/flaky skin around their faces (even the one that is showing new feather growth). So I don't know whether this fungus is actually going away or not. To be honest, I'm starting to lose hope that I will be able to get rid of it. Maybe someone out there can help me with my next questions:

1) My coop has sand both in their coop and in their run area (only the nesting boxes have pine shavings). The birds all dust-bathe in that sand. If they have the crusty/flaky skin and it comes off in the sand while dust-bathing, isn't it just going to keep re-infecting all of them? If so, how will I ever get this under control?

2) I've done some research about anti-fungal shampoos and found one called Malaseb. I'm wondering if I give them all baths with this shampoo, if that would help at all. I've bathed them before and it's an all-day job (with the blow dry-outs). And I'm guessing I'd have to do the bathing more than once. Ugh!

I'm really falling apart right now. Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated. These birds are my pets and I love them dearly. I don't want to resort to having them all put down if there's a bright light at the end of the tunnel.
I would probably consult a vet with the one who has the worst symptoms. They could probably do a skin scraping for fungus or whatever else it could be. Maybe it is some sort of mite like mange?

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