June 3, 2010


‘Drunk’ parrots struck down by mystery illness

. . . ‘Drunk’ red-collared lorikeets have been found stumbling around, falling out of trees, or simply passed out around Darwin after being struck down by a mystery illness which causes them to display classic signs of human drunkenness.

Concerned locals have discovered the ‘pickled parrots’ all over Darwin’s roads, yards and parklands and taken them to The Ark Animal Hospital in Palmerston, where veterinarians have been treating up to eight birds a day for the past few months.

. . . Ms Hansen said there are many theories about the cause of the mystery illness – which Darwin vets have dubbed the ‘drop lorry’ or ‘drunken lorikeet’ disease – including fermented nectar from a plant they are eating, or an outbreak of a mystery virus.

Times Online - www.timesonline.co.uk
02 June 2010
S Tedmanson
Photo courtesy of AFP
Location: Darwin, Australia - Map It

Investigators Await Test Results to Confirm Bacteria in Stonewall Jackson Lake Fish

Although fish are still dying at Stonewall Jackson Lake, Division of Natural Resources biologist Kevin Yokum said they are dying in smaller numbers.

Investigators found about 20 dead crappie at the lake on Tuesday, June 1, and Yokum tabulated that the total dead so far totals about 1500.

. . . Yokum believes that the fish are dying from a family of bacterial infections called columnaris.

WBOY 12 News - www.wboy.com
01 June 2010
J Lewis
Location: Stonewall Jackson Lake, Georgia, USA - Map It

>>> FULL ARTICLE [includes video]

Oil spill reshapes sweeping new study of oyster reefs -- Virginia to Florida

Florida State University marine biologist David L. Kimbro will lead scientists from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Maine in a massive effort to study the health and future of the nation's natural oyster reefs in 12 estuaries spanning 1,000 miles of Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico shoreline.

The multi-institutional project, which kicked off June 1, has become even more vital now following the calamitous Gulf oil spill that began in April.

Funded by a new, three-year $850,342 grant from the National Science Foundation's Biological Oceanography Program, the study is expected to guide restoration of what were already the world's most devastated estuarine habitats while producing important information on the oil spill's effects.

EurekAlert! - www.eurekalert.org
01 June 2010
Photo credit: D Kimbro/FSU Coastal and Marine Laboratory

Small sea snail damaging world’s coral reefs

Dr Jeff Shima, a Senior Lecturer in Marine Ecology and Director of Victoria’s Coastal Ecology Laboratory, has studied the worm snail Dendropoma maximum in the field at Moorea, French Polynesia.

"Our research looks at the effects of this often overlooked ‘zoological oddity’. It’s incredible that such a small snail can have such a significant impact.

"The adverse effects of this largely unstudied snail on coral reefs rival and exceed those of coral bleaching, climate change and human impacts. This small snail may be having a catastrophic impact."

Victoria University of Wellington - www.victoria.ac.nz
28 May 2010
Photo courtesy of iStockphoto

Journal Article Cited

Related News

Virus-fungus combo behind honeybee collapse?

A group of pathogens including a fungus and family of viruses may be working together to cause the decline in honeybees known as colony collapse disorder, say researchers from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

"There might be a synergism between two very different pathogens," explained USDA's Jay Evans.

"When they show up together there is a significant correlation with colony decline."

Science a GoGo - www.scienceagogo.com
26 May 2010
K Melville
Photo courtesy of Science a GoGo


Huh, That's Interesting!

It Ain't All Bad News
Photo credit: C Christie


Browse complete Digest publication library here.

Emerging Infectious Diseases - June 2010
Volume 16, Number 6

Faecal CWD prion excretion and inflammation
New Microbiologica. 2010 April; 33(2): 183-184 [pdf][free full-text available]
G Di Guardo and G Marruchella

Linking process to pattern: estimating spatiotemporal dynamics of a wildlife epidemic from cross-sectional data

Ecological Monographs. 2010 May; 80(2): 221-240
DM Heisey et al.

Isolation and characterization of highly pathogenic avian influenza virus subtype H5N1 from donkeys
J Biomed Sci. 2010 Apr 14;17:25.
AS Abdel-Moneim et al.

Low prevalence of Salmonella enterica in Australian wildlife
Environmental Microbiology Reports. 2010; [Epub ahead of print]
SK Parsons et al.
[submitted by Australian Wildlife Health Network]