April 8, 2010


Only Some Like It Hot: How Birds from Different Populations React to Infections in Their Natural Environment

The immune system is the most important system at the disposal of an organism for defending itself against pathogens.

All organisms have an immune system; however, thus far, it was unclear as to why species and populations within a given species display significant variations in their immune reactions. Up to now it was not possible to study this phenomenon in animals living in the wild.

With the help of new radiotelemetry technology, researchers from the University of Princeton and the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Radolfzell have now succeeded, for the first time, in studying fever in a vertebrate species living in the wild, the North American song sparrow (Melospiza melodia).

Science Daily - www.sciencedaily.com [Source: Max-Planck-Gesellschaft]
06 April 2010
Photo credit: K Spoelstra

More Bird News

Deadly fungus threatens 9 bat species in Ga., Ky., N.C., S.C. and Tenn., expert says

A leading bat expert with the USDA Forest Service's Southern Research Station today identified nine bat species in Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee that she believes are most threatened by white-nose syndrome (WNS), a fungus that kills bats and appears to be rapidly spreading south from the northeastern United States.

Station Research Ecologist Susan Loeb, Ph.D. says WNS has been confirmed in Tennessee, and she says it is just a matter of time before the fungus is detected in Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina and South Carolina.

"In the five states where most of my research has centered, little-brown bats and Indiana bats are among the most threatened by WNS -- meaning their populations could either be seriously decimated or become extinct," said Loeb, a veteran wildlife researcher based in Clemson, S.C.

Science Blog - www.scienceblog.com
07 April 2010
Photo credit: J Luck/The Daily Cougar


More Bat News
>>> Endangered bats concern farmers
>>> Arkansas State Parks to close three caves

Rising Water Temperatures Found in US Streams and Rivers

New research by a team of ecologists and hydrologists shows that water temperatures are increasing in many streams and rivers throughout the United States.

The research, published in the journal Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, documents that 20 major U.S. streams and rivers -- including such prominent rivers as the Colorado, Potomac, Delaware, and Hudson -- have shown statistically significant long-term warming.

. . . "Long-term temperature increases can impact aquatic biodiversity, biological productivity, and the cycling of contaminants through the ecosystem."

Science Daily - www.sciencedaily.com [Source: University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science]
07 April 2010
Photo credit: M Hogan

Reported Wildlife Mortality Events to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center Updated

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 March 31, 2010 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.

USGS National Wildlife Health Center
07 Apr 2010
Area: United States


Huh, That's Interesting!
Photo credit: Z Ákos

It Ain't All Bad News

Browse complete Digest publication library here.

The identification of a new Giardia duodenalis assemblage in marine vertebrates and a preliminary analysis of G. duodenalis population biology in marine systems
Int J Parasitol. 2010 Mar 30. [Epub ahead of print]
E Lasek-Nesselquist et al.

Vaccination strategies for managing brucellosis in Yellowstone bison
Vaccine. 2010 Mar 31. [Epub ahead of print]
J Treanor et al.

Brucellosis in the United States: Role and significance of wildlife reservoirs
Vaccine. 2010 Mar 31. [Epub ahead of print]
SC Olsen

A Weighted Surveillance Approach for Detecting Chronic Wasting Disease Foci
Journal of Wildlife Diseases. 2010; 46(1): 118-135
DP Walsh and MW Miller

Antibody Responses of Raccoons Naturally Exposed to Influenza A Virus
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases. 2010. Epub ahead of print.
JJ Root et al.