When I home today, I opened the birds' cages and they did their usual "Yay! She let us out" fly around the room. I noticed that Coconut was breathing hard, but initially thought he must have done more laps than he was used to. However, it soon became apparent that there was an issue. He was feeling well enough to fly onto my hand for some seed, but his breathing was clearly labored. I am incredibly fortunate in that there is a veterinary practice down the road from me that treats birds and other exotic animals and they were still open. Their avian vet was not there, but the one who was treats birds regularly and consulted with the avian vet on Coconut's treatment.
It looks like Coconut has some kind of mass. The vet did an x-ray without sedating him (placed him in a small box instead), which means that the quality was not the best, but it was enough to be pretty sure there is something there. She chose not to sedate him based on trade-offs between the risks and the possible treatments that could be administered this evening. She also chose not to draw blood. From a gram stain, there are also signs of a yeast infection.
Her overall take was that he definitely needed to stay and be supported with oxygen. From her palpitation, the x-ray, and his overall presentation, she thinks that the labored breathing is more likely from an internal obstruction than a respiratory infection. However, because of the gram stain, she is treating him with an anti-fungal medicine. She also is giving him a broad-spectrum antibiotic. She said that the incidence of secondary infections is high enough and that he was looking fragile enough that she didn't want to wait. Finally, she gave him a shot that might
help shrink a tumor (depending on what it is). She is not positive that he will make it through the night, but they have done everything they could to stabilize him and give him his best chances.
Please send Coconut good thoughts. It was hard to leave him there--and without his buddy Kip--but it was clearly where he needed to be. Fortunate for him, there were two other budgies there who were on the mend and who were making nice little chirpy sounds.