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Winter mortality of common loons in Florida coastal waters

Journal of Wildlife Diseases

5857_Forrester.pdf
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Abstract

Diagnostic findings are presented for 434 common loons (Gavia imrner) found sick or dead on Florida beaches from 1970 through 1994, primarily during the months of December to April. The most commonly recognized problem was an emaciation syndrome (66%), followed by oiling (18%), aspergillosis (7%), trauma (5%) and miscellaneous disease entities (1%). The cause-of-death for 3% of the birds was not determined. Many of the carcasses examined (n = 173) were obtained during an epizootic which occurred from January to March of 1983 in which more than 13,000 loons were estimated to have died. An emaciation syndrome, characterized by severe atrophy of pectoral muscles, loss of body fat and hemorrhagic enteritis, was the primary finding in this epizootic. It was postulated to have a complex etiologic basis involving synergistic effects and energy costs of migration, molting and replacement of flight feathers, food resource changes, salt-loading, intestinal parasitism, environmental contaminants, and inclement weather.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Winter mortality of common loons in Florida coastal waters
Series title:
Journal of Wildlife Diseases
Volume
33
Issue:
4
Year Published:
1997
Language:
English
Contributing office(s):
Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description:
833-847
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Journal of Wildlife Diseases
First page:
833
Last page:
847
Number of Pages:
15