October 12, 2007

Mystery Lesion Makes Rescue Bid Devilishly Tricky
The Age - theage.com.au
12 Oct 2007
L Edwards
Photo Courtesy of C Abraham
Area: Australia, New Zealand

Victoria's "insurance" population of Tasmanian devils could be in jeopardy with the discovery of a facial lesion on an animal at Healesville Sanctuary yesterday. Healesville has nearly a third of the 61 devils sent to four mainland zoos in a bid to save the species from extinction from a highly contagious cancer that has already decimated over half of the species in a decade.

The young female was one of four getting a final veterinary check before being sent to Gosford Reptile Park for breeding. The transfer was halted until tests can determine the cause of the lump on the animal's mouth.

H5N1 Infection in Sparrows, Starlings and Pigeons
Agora Vox - agoravox.com
11 Oct 2007

It’s taken longer than many of us wanted, but some new data on host susceptibility is now coming in. The influenza research group at St. Jude’s has just published a paper in CDC’s journal, Emerging Infectious Diseases, verifying that common land based birds can be infected with highly pathogenic avian influenza virus H5N1. The St. Jude’s group inoculated house sparrows, European starlings and pigeons with four strains of H5N1 that were isolated in 2004 - 2006.

Hi path H5N1 was first found in poultry in southern China in 1996. It is lethal to chickens and other poultry. Ducks are usually unaffected, although some strains are lethal to ducks as well. The combination of poultry movements and movement of infected aquatic wildfowl have spread hi path H5N1 widely to poultry and birds from Asia to Europe to the Middle East to Africa.

Colorado State Researchers Study Impact of Habitat Fragmentation on Disease Transmission Among Wild Big Cats
Colorado State University - colostate.edu
11 Oct 2007

The National Science Foundation awarded Colorado State University scientists a $2.3 million grant to study how habitat fragmentation in parts of the United States influences the transmission of diseases among bobcats, pumas and domestic cats. This work will ultimately help scientists in the future identify how urbanization influences the dynamics of infectious disease among wildlife populations and domestic pets.

Kevin Crooks, associate professor in the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology, and Sue VandeWoude, associate professor in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, will study the three different cat species in divergent habitats in Colorado, Florida and California as part of a National Science Foundation Ecology of Infectious Diseases research program.

Eider Duck Deaths Puzzle Researchers
Cape Cod Times - capecodonline.com
11 Oct 2007
D Fraser
Area: Massachusetts, USA

The white sandy shore of Duck Harbor is great for beachcombing. Lobster buoys, rope, driftwood, even a sailboat wash ashore here. But among the piles of twisted eelgrass, smooth stones and jingle shells at the wrack line are scores of common eiders. Beaks open, necks in a still-sinuous curve, the wings sodden. Dead. It's a bit of a jolt for beach walkers, and Bob Prescott, director of Massachusetts Audubon Society's Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, has been hearing about it.

"We were getting calls every day over the holiday weekend," Prescott said. Common eiders fly from their breeding grounds in northern Maine, the Canadian Maritimes, and Arctic regions to Southern New England, and as far south as New Jersey. A major portion of the population, hundreds of thousands of them, may spend the winter in Cape Cod Bay, eating mussels, crabs and snails.

Related Link



Characteristics of Marine Aggregates in Shallow-water Ecosystems: Implications for Disease Ecology
EcoHealth. 2007; [Epub ahead of print]
MM Lyons et al.

Protection and Virus Shedding of Falcons Vaccinated against Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza A Virus (H5N1)
Emerging Infectious Diseases. 2007 Nov; [Epub ahead of print]
M Lierz et al.

Microbial Pathogenesis: Mechanisms of Infectious Disease

Cell Host & Microbes. 2007 Oct; 2(4): 214-219
VB Carruthers et al

Avian Pathology
Volume 36 Issue 5, 2007

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