Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Avian cholera could spread from Great Salt Lake

15.11.2004


Scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) National Wildlife Health Center are concerned that avian cholera, which recently killed about 30,000 eared grebes--small, diving water birds--at Great Salt Lake, Utah, could spread as birds migrate south for the winter, the agency announced today. Last week, USGS scientists isolated Pasteurella multocida, the bacterium that causes avian cholera, from dead grebes that were sent to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center in Madison, Wis. USGS scientists are working with Utah biologists to monitor the situation.



"We haven’t observed significant avian cholera outbreaks in North America since 1998, so we aren’t certain if this mortality represents an isolated event or a renewal of regular outbreaks," says Mike Samuel, a USGS scientist and avian cholera expert. "Because recent research shows that birds are the primary reservoir for maintaining and spreading this disease, we need to consider the possibility that grebes and other birds will spread avian cholera beyond the Great Salt Lake during their migration to wintering areas." Each fall about 1.5 million eared grebes congregate at the Great Salt Lake as they migrate south.

Avian cholera is the most common infectious disease among wild North American waterfowl. Once birds are infected with P. multocida, they die quickly, sometimes within 6 to 12 hours after infection. Bacteria spread by dead and dying birds can subsequently infect healthy birds. As a result, avian cholera can sweep quickly through a wetland and kill thousands of birds in a single outbreak.


Avian cholera outbreaks occur primarily in winter and early spring. During these times, waterfowl are usually in dense groups on wintering or staging areas and may be experiencing stress due to crowding and severe weather. These conditions may serve to initiate an outbreak and facilitate transmission of the disease. Previous outbreaks of avian cholera have erupted at Great Salt Lake, killing tens of thousands of birds. The bacterium that causes avian cholera is not a significant human health threat, although the disease is readily transmitted among bird species.

Avian cholera was introduced to North America from domestic fowl and eventually spread to wild bird populations during the 1940s. Since that time, it has spread throughout most of the U.S. Over the past 10 to 15 years, avian cholera has recurred almost annually in several areas: southern Saskatchewan, California’s Central Valley and Klamath Basin, the Texas panhandle and rice belt, the Rainwater Basin of Nebraska, and in the Mississippi and Missouri River drainages. For more information on avian cholera, go to http://www.nwhc.usgs.gov/research/avian_cholera/avian_cholera.html.

Rex Sohn | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.usgs.gov
http://www.nwhc.usgs.gov/research/avian_cholera/avian_cholera.html

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Foxes in the city: citizen science helps researchers to study urban wildlife
14.12.2018 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien

nachricht Machine learning helps predict worldwide plant-conservation priorities
04.12.2018 | Ohio State University

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tangled magnetic fields power cosmic particle accelerators

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

In search of missing worlds, Hubble finds a fast evaporating exoplanet

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>