November 6, 2007

Fishermen and Public Health Groups Act to Protect Salmon and Steelhead [Press Release]
Earthjustice -
05 Nov 2007
Area: United States

Pacific salmon at risk from pesticides

Today, fishing and environmental groups filed a lawsuit in federal district court seeking to force the federal government to regulate toxic pesticides known to harm salmon and steelhead. Toxic pesticides have been detected in each of the major salmon and steelhead rivers in the Pacific Northwest and California. Scientists have found that even at low levels, toxic pesticides harm salmon and steelhead by causing abnormal sexual development, impairing swimming ability, and reducing growth rates. "The evidence of harm to salmon from pesticides is overwhelming.

It is irresponsible for wildlife agencies to ignore that evidence and allow business as usual to continue while salmon and steelhead populations continue to slip toward extinction," stated Aimee Code with the Northwest Coalition for Alternatives to Pesticides, a co-plaintiff in the suit filed today. Five years ago, a federal court ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service to develop permanent methods for protecting salmon and steelhead from 54 toxic pesticides found in west coast salmon streams. Since then, EPA has submitted documents to NMFS regarding the effects of the pesticides on salmon and steelhead. But NMFS has failed to identify a single measure needed to protect salmon and steelhead from the pesticides or to complete any of the required consultations.

Botulism Suspected in Mich. Bird Deaths
The Associated Press -
03 Nov 2007
Area: Michigan United States

Dead birds are washing ashore in Antrim County, and environmental scientists suspect botulism associated with invasive mussels is to blame. Beachgoers recently have spotted dozens of loon and grebe carcasses littering beaches along the eastern shore of Grand Traverse Bay. The disease has killed thousands of birds in the Great Lakes region in recent years. "I walk on the beach every day, and I've seen some dead birds," Sherri DeCamp, who lives on the bay north of Elk Rapids, told the Traverse City Record-Eagle for a story Friday.

"I would guess we see four or five each day, new ones." Nearly 3,000 gulls, grebes and red-breasted mergansers turned up on beaches along a 12-mile stretch of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in November 2006. They died from type E botulism, a neuromuscular disease caused by bacteria. The birds had eaten fish that carried the toxin, biologists said.

Thousands of Bluebills Dead Since Thursday
Duluth News Tribune -
06 Nov 2007
S Cook
Area: Minnesota United States

Dan Markham and Noel Hill of Duluth were setting up to hunt ducks on Lake Winnibigoshish near Deer River on Saturday when they noticed a dead bluebill on shore. A quick walk along the shore turned up another three dozen dead bluebills. Waterfowl biologists with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources estimate that as many as 3,000 bluebills, also known as lesser scaup, may have died along the west shore of Lake Winnie. The die-off began Thursday, said Steve Cordts, DNR waterfowl specialist in Bemidji.

Biologists believe the cause is a microscopic trematode, a kind of fluke, present in snails that the bluebills are feeding on. Cordts thinks the die-off could continue. “We’re going to find a lot more dead,” he said in a telephone interview Monday. Cordts and other DNR employees collected about 1,000 dead bluebills from a stretch of shoreline on Friday. In the time it took to collect about 900 of those birds, another 30 to 50 had died in the same stretch.

Reported Wildlife Mortality Events to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center Updated
USGS National Wildlife Health Center
06 Nov 2007
Area: United States

USGS and a network of partners across the country work on documenting wildlife mortality events in order to provide timely and accurate information on locations, species and causes of death. This information was updated on Nov 03, 2007 on the USGS National Wildlife Health Center web page, New and Ongoing Wildlife Mortality Events Nationwide. Quarterly Mortality Reports are also available from this page. These reports go back to 1995.



Journal of Wildlife Diseases
Volume 43, Number 4

Catarina Virus, an Arenaviral Species Principally Associated with Neotoma micropus (Southern Plains Woodrat) in Texas [online abstract only]
Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2007 Oct; 77(4): 732-6
MN Cajimat et al.

Transmission Dynamics of Cryptosporidium Infection in a Natural Population of Non-Human Primates at Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka [online abstract only]
Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg., 2007 Jul; 77(5): pp. 818-822
DK Ekanayake et al.

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