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Brooder pneumonia is the acute form of aspergillosis that frequently affects newly hatched chicks. It is a non-contagious, opportunistic infection that predominately affects the chick's respiratory tract, however any organ system may be affected. It is caused by infection with Aspergillus molds. Aspergillus fumigatus is the most common species isolated from infected birds, followed by A. flavus, A. nidulans, and A. amstelodami.
Chicks become infected with Aspergillus through environmental exposure.