Tuberculosis in wild birds: implications for captive birds

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The geographic distribution of avian tuberculosis is widespread but the lack of visible epizootics makes assessment of its impact on wild birds difficult. Generally a low prevalence, widely-scattered, individual animal disease, avian tuberculosis is caused by the same agent in wild and domestic birds. Thus there exists the potential for disease transfer between these two groups in situations that result in direct contact such as wild animals newly captured or transferred from rehabilitation centers, and wild and captive animals intermingling in exhibit areas. During the past 7 yr, tuberculosis caused by Mycobacterium avium, was diagnosed in 64 birds submitted to the National Wildlife Health Research Center from 16 states; avian tuberculosis was the primary diagnosis in 52 of the 64 birds, while the remaining 12 isolates were incidental findings. Twenty-eight of these birds were picked up during epizootics caused by other disease agents including avian cholera, botulism type C, and lead, organophosphorus compound, and cyanide poisoning. Twelve birds were found incidental to birds collected during disease monitoring programs and research projects, and 10 birds were collected by hunters or found sick and euthanatized. Tuberculosis lesions occurred (in order of decreasing frequency) in the liver, intestine, spleen, lung, and air sacs. Several unusual morphological presentations were observed in the gizzard, shoulder joint, jugular vein, face, nares and bill, ureter and bone marrow. Infected birds were collected during all 12 mo of the yr from a variety of species in the Anseriformes, Podicipediformes, Gruiformes, and Falconiformes. Nine of the 46 known age birds were immature indicating that lesions can develop during the first year.

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Publication type Book
Publication Subtype Conference publication
Title Tuberculosis in wild birds: implications for captive birds
Year Published 1990
Language English
Publisher American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Publisher location Media, PA
Contributing office(s) National Wildlife Health Center
Description 1 p.
Larger Work Title Proceedings of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
First page 154
Last page 154
Conference Title American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Country United States
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
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