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Monday, 31 August 2015

What's new for 'birdRS' in PubMed - August 2015, Week 4

birdRS-Latest News

This message contains My NCBI what's new results from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) at the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM).

PubMed Results

1. PLoS One. 2015 Aug 27;10(8):e0134284. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0134284. 

Genetic Differentiation in Insular Lowland Rainforests: Insights from Historical Demographic Patterns in Philippine Birds. 
Sánchez-González LA(1), Hosner PA(1), Moyle RG(1). Author information: (1)Natural History Museum and Biodiversity Institute, Dyche Hall, University of Kansas, 1345 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, Kansas 66045-7561, United States of America. 

Phylogeographic studies of Philippine birds support that deep genetic structure occurs across continuous lowland forests within islands, despite the lack of obvious contemporary isolation mechanisms. To examine the pattern and tempo of diversification within Philippine island forests, and test if common mechanisms are responsible for observed differentiation, we focused on three co-distributed lowland bird taxa endemic to Greater Luzon and Greater Negros-Panay: Blue-headed Fantail (Rhipidura cyaniceps), White-browed Shama (Copsychus luzoniensis), and Lemon-throated Leaf-Warbler (Phylloscopus cebuensis). Each species has two described subspecies within Greater Luzon, and a single described subspecies on Greater Negros/Panay. Each of the three focal species showed a common geographic pattern of two monophyletic groups in Greater Luzon sister to a third monophyletic group found in Greater Negros-Panay, suggesting that common or similar biogeographic processes may have produced similar distributions. However, studied species displayed variable levels of mitochondrial DNA differentiation between clades, and genetic differentiation within Luzon was not necessarily concordant with described subspecies boundaries. Population genetic parameters for the three species suggested both rapid population growth from small numbers and geographic expansion across Luzon Island. Estimates of the timing of population expansion further supported that these events occurred asynchronously throughout the Pleistocene in the focal species, demanding particular explanations for differentiation, and support that co-distribution may be secondarily congruent. PMID: 26312748 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

2. PLoS One. 2015 Aug 27;10(8):e0136316. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0136316. 

Exploring Genomic, Geographic and Virulence Interactions among Epidemic and Non-Epidemic St. Louis Encephalitis Virus (Flavivirus) Strains. 
Diaz LA(1), Goñi SE(2), Iserte JA(3), Quaglia AI(4), Singh A(5), Logue CH(6), Powers AM(5), Contigiani MS(4). Author information: (1)Laboratorio de Arbovirus, Instituto de Virología ''Dr. J. M. Vanella", Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Córdoba, Argentina; Instituto de Investigaciones Biológicas y Tecnológicas, CONICET-Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Córdoba, Argentina. (2)Área de Virosis Emergentes y Zoonóticas, Laboratorio de Ingeniería Genética y Biología Celular y Molecular, Instituto de Microbiología Básica y Aplicada, Departamento de Ciencia y Tecnología, Universidad Nacional de Quilmes, Bernal, Buenos Aires, Argentina. (3)Laboratorio de Bioinformática Estructural, Fundación Instituto Leloir, CABA, Buenos Aires, Argentina. (4)Laboratorio de Arbovirus, Instituto de Virología ''Dr. J. M. Vanella", Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Córdoba, Argentina. (5)Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention. Fort Collins, Colorado, United States of America. (6)Novel and Dangerous Pathogens Training, Public Health England, Porton Down, United Kingdom. 

St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV) is a re-emerging arbovirus in South America. In 2005, an encephalitis outbreak caused by SLEV was reported in Argentina. The reason for the outbreak remains unknown, but may have been related to virological factors, changes in vectors populations, avian amplifying hosts, and/or environmental conditions. The main goal of this study was to characterize the complete genome of epidemic and non-epidemic SLEV strains from Argentina. Seventeen amino acid changes were detected; ten were non-conservative and located in proteins E, NS1, NS3 and NS5. Phylogenetic analysis showed two major clades based on geography: the North America and northern Central America (NAnCA) clade and the South America and southern Central America (SAsCA) clade. Interestingly, the presence of SAsCA genotype V SLEV strains in the NAnCA clade was reported in California, Florida and Texas, overlapping with known bird migration flyways. This work represents the first step in understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying virulence and biological variation among SLEV strains. PMID: 26312485 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

3. PeerJ. 2015 Aug 20;3:e1187. doi: 10.7717/peerj.1187. eCollection 2015. 

Irrigation and avifaunal change in coastal Northwest Mexico: has irrigated habit attracted threatened migratory species? 
Rohwer S(1), Grason E(2), Navarro-Sigüenza AG(3). Author information: (1)Burke Museum and Department of Biology, University of Washington , Seattle, WA , USA. (2)Department of Biology, University of Washington , Seattle, WA , USA. (3)Museo de Zoología, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México , México D.F. , Mexico. 

Irrigation in desert ecosystems can either reduce or increase species diversity. Groundwater pumping often lowers water tables and reduces natural wetlands, whereas canal irrigation often creates mesic habitat, resulting in great increases in avian diversity from irrigation. Here we compare a dataset of potential natural vegetation to recent datasets from areal and satellite imagery to show that 60% of the land in the coastal plain of southern Sonora and northern Sinaloa lying below 200 m elevation has been converted by irrigation to more mesic habitats. We then use the record of bird specimens in the world's museums from this same region of Mexico to examine the avian community before and after the development of extensive irrigation. In general these museum records show an increase in the abundance and diversity of breeding birds associated with mesic habitats. Although thorn forest birds have likely decreased in total numbers, most are common enough in the remaining thorn forest that collection records did not indicate their probable decline. Four migrants having most of their breeding ranges in the US or Canada, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Cliff Swallow, Bell's Vireo, and Orchard Oriole, apparently have increased dramatically as breeders in irrigated habitats of NW Mexico. Because these species have decreased or even largely disappeared as breeding birds in parts of the US or Canada, further research should assess whether their increases in new mesic habitats of NW Mexico are linked to their declines as breeding birds in Canada and the US For Bell's Vireo recent specimens from Sinaloa suggest its new breeding population in NW Mexico may be composed partly of the endangered Least Bell's Vireo. PMID: 26312181 [PubMed] 

4. AoB Plants. 2015 Aug 26. pii: plv104. [Epub ahead of print] 

Long-term ecology resolves the timing, region of origin, and process of establishment for a disputed alien tree. 
Wilmshurst JM(1), McGlone MS(2), Turney CS(3). Author information: (1)Landcare Research, PO Box 69040, Lincoln 7640, New Zealand School of Environment, The University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland 1142, New Zealand (2)Landcare Research, PO Box 69040, Lincoln 7640, New Zealand. (3)School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Australia. 

Alien plants are a pervasive environmental problem, particularly on islands where they can rapidly transform unique indigenous ecosystems. However, often it is difficult to confidently determine if a species is native or alien, especially if establishment occurred before historical records. This can present a management challenge: for example, should such taxa be eradicated or left alone until their region of origin and status is clarified? Here we show how combining palaeoecological and historical records can help resolve such dilemmas, using the tree daisy Olearia lyallii on the remote New Zealand subantarctic Auckland Islands as a case study. The status of this tree as native or introduced has remained uncertain for the 175 years since it was first discovered on the islands, and its appropriate management is debated. Elsewhere, O. lyallii has a highly restricted distribution on small sea bird-rich islands within a 2° latitudinal band south of mainland New Zealand. Analysis of palaeoecological and historical records from the islands suggest that O. lyallii established there c. 1807 when the islands were first exploited by European sealers. Establishment was facilitated by anthropogenic burning and clearing and its subsequent spread has been slow, limited in distribution, and probably human-assisted. O. lyallii has succeeded mostly in highly-disturbed sites which are also nutrient enriched from nesting sea birds, seals and sea spray. This marine subsidy has fuelled the rapid growth of O. lyallii and allowed this tree to be competitive against the maritime communities it has replaced. Although endemic to the New Zealand region, our evidence suggests that O. lyallii is alien to the Auckland Islands. Although such 'native' aliens can pose unique management challenges on islands, in this instance we suggest that ongoing monitoring with no control is an appropriate management action, as O. lyallii appears to pose minimal risk to ecological integrity. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. PMID: 26311733 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

5. J R Soc Interface. 2015 Sep 6;12(110). pii: 20150508. 

The role of passive avian head stabilization in flapping flight. 
Pete AE(1), Kress D(1), Dimitrov MA(1), Lentink D(2). Author information: (1)Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA. (2)Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA 

Birds improve vision by stabilizing head position relative to their surroundings, while their body is forced up and down during flapping flight. Stabilization is facilitated by compensatory motion of the sophisticated avian head-neck system. While relative head motion has been studied in stationary and walking birds, little is known about how birds accomplish head stabilization during flapping flight. To unravel this, we approximate the avian neck with a linear mass-spring-damper system for vertical displacements, analogous to proven head stabilization models for walking humans. We corroborate the model's dimensionless natural frequency and damping ratios from high-speed video recordings of whooper swans (Cygnus cygnus) flying over a lake. The data show that flap-induced body oscillations can be passively attenuated through the neck. We find that the passive model robustly attenuates large body oscillations, even in response to head mass and gust perturbations. Our proof of principle shows that bird-inspired drones with flapping wings could record better images with a swan-inspired passive camera suspension. © 2015 The Author(s). PMID: 26311316 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

6. Biol Lett. 2015 Aug;11(8). pii: 20150517. 

Stressful colours: corticosterone concentrations in a free-living songbird vary with the spectral composition of experimental illumination. 
Ouyang JQ(1), de Jong M(2), Hau M(3), Visser ME(2), van Grunsven RH(4), Spoelstra K(2). Author information: (1)Department of Animal Ecology, The Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW), Wageningen, The Netherlands (2)Department of Animal Ecology, The Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW), Wageningen, The Netherlands. (3)Department of Biology, Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, Evolutionary Physiology Group, Seewiesen, Germany University of Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany. (4)Nature Conservation and Plant Ecology Group, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands. 

Organisms have evolved under natural daily light/dark cycles for millions of years. These cycles have been disturbed as night-time darkness is increasingly replaced by artificial illumination. Investigating the physiological consequences of free-living organisms in artificially lit environments is crucial to determine whether nocturnal lighting disrupts circadian rhythms, changes behaviour, reduces fitness and ultimately affects population numbers. We make use of a unique, large-scale network of replicated field sites which were experimentally illuminated at night using lampposts emanating either red, green, white or no light to test effect on stress hormone concentrations (corticosterone) in a songbird, the great tit (Parus major). Adults nesting in white-light transects had higher corticosterone concentrations than in the other treatments. We also found a significant interaction between distance to the closest lamppost and treatment type: individuals in red light had higher corticosterone levels when they nested closer to the lamppost than individuals nesting farther away, a decline not observed in the green or dark treatment. Individuals with high corticosterone levels had fewer fledglings, irrespective of treatment. These results show that artificial light can induce changes in individual hormonal phenotype. As these effects vary considerably with light spectrum, it opens the possibility to mitigate these effects by selecting street lighting of specific spectra. © 2015 The Author(s). PMID: 26311159 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

7. Respir Physiol Neurobiol. 2015 Aug 23. pii: S1569-9048(15)30036-7. doi: 10.1016/j.resp.2015.08.007. [Epub ahead of print] 

Studying respiratory rhythm generation in a developing bird: hatching a new experimental model using the classic in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparation. 
Vincen-Brown MA(1), Whitesitt KC(1), Quick FG(2), Pilarski JQ(3). Author information: (1)Department of Biological Sciences, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID, 83 208, USA. (2)Department of Biological Sciences, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID, 83 208, USA. Electronic address: (3)Department of Biological Sciences, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID, 83 208, USA; Department of Dental Sciences, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID, 83 208, USA. Electronic address: 

It has been more than thirty years since the in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparation was first presented as a method to study automatic breathing behaviors in the neonatal rat. This straightforward preparation has led to an incredible burst of information about the location and coordination of several spontaneously active microcircuits that form the ventrolateral respiratory network of the brainstem. Despite these advances, our knowledge of the mechanisms that regulate central breathing behaviors is still incomplete. Investigations into the nature of spontaneous breathing rhythmicity have almost exclusively focused on mammals, and there is a need for comparative experimental models to evaluate several unresolved issues from a different perspective. With this in mind, we sought to develop a new avian in vitro model with the long term goal to better understand questions associated with the ontogeny of respiratory rhythm generation, neuroplasticity, and whether multiple, independent oscillators drive the major phases of breathing. The fact that birds develop in ovo provides unparalleled access to central neuronal networks throughout the prenatal period-from embryo to hatchling-that are free from confounding interactions with mother. Previous studies using in vitro avian models have been strictly limited to the early embryonic period. Consequently, the details and even the presence of brainstem derived breathing-related rhythmogenesis in birds have never been described. In the present study, we used the altricial zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) and show robust spontaneous motor outflow through cranial motor nerve IX, which is first detectable on embryonic day four and continues through prenatal and early postnatal development without interruption. We also show that brainstem oscillations change dramatically over the course of prenatal development, sometimes within hours, which suggests rapid maturational modifications in growth and connectivity. We propose that this experimental preparation will be useful for a variety of studies aimed at testing the biophysical and synaptic properties of neurons that participate in the unique spatiotemporal patterns of avian breathing behaviors, especially in the context of early development. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V. PMID: 26310580 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

8. J Med Entomol. 2014 Nov 1;51(6):1116-1121. Epub 2014 Nov 1. 

Key to Species of the Genus Neocheyletiella (Acariformes: Cheyletidae), With Description of a New Species. 
Mertins JW(1), Bochkov AV(2). Author information: (1)Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Services, Science, Technology, and Analysis Services, National Veterinary Services Laboratories, 1920 Dayton Avenue, Ames, IA 50010. (2)Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Universitetskaya emb. 1, 199034 St. Petersburg, Russia. Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, 1109 Geddes Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48109. A new species of the genus Neocheyletiella Baker, 1949 (Acariformes: Cheyletidae) is described from the zebra finch, Taeniopygia guttata (Viellot, 1817) (Passeriformes: Estrildidae), from a laboratory colony at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA. 

The setal additions in the ontogeny of the new species, Neocheyletiella parvisetosa Mertins & Bochkov, and the main differential characters of all 17 known species of the genus Neocheyletiella are provided in tabular format. Keys to females and males of Neocheyletiella spp. also are given. © 2014 Entomological Society of America. PMID: 26309296 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

9. PLoS One. 2015 Aug 26;10(8):e0136677. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0136677. 

Validation of a Mechanistic Model for Non-Invasive Study of Ecological Energetics in an Endangered Wading Bird with Counter-Current Heat Exchange in its Legs. 
Fitzpatrick MJ(1), Mathewson PD(1), Porter WP(1). Author information: (1)Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America. 

Mechanistic models provide a powerful, minimally invasive tool for gaining a deeper understanding of the ecology of animals across geographic space and time. In this paper, we modified and validated the accuracy of the mechanistic model Niche Mapper for simulating heat exchanges of animals with counter-current heat exchange mechanisms in their legs and animals that wade in water. We then used Niche Mapper to explore the effects of wading and counter-current heat exchange on the energy expenditures of Whooping Cranes, a long-legged wading bird. We validated model accuracy against the energy expenditure of two captive Whooping Cranes measured using the doubly-labeled water method and time energy budgets. Energy expenditure values modeled by Niche Mapper were similar to values measured by the doubly-labeled water method and values estimated from time-energy budgets. Future studies will be able to use Niche Mapper as a non-invasive tool to explore energy-based limits to the fundamental niche of Whooping Cranes and apply this knowledge to management decisions. Basic questions about the importance of counter-current exchange and wading to animal physiological tolerances can also now be explored with the model. PMID: 26308207 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

10. Environ Monit Assess. 2015 Sep;187(9):4783. doi: 10.1007/s10661-015-4783-0. Epub 2015 Aug 26. 

Clutch size of a vole-eating bird of prey as an indicator of vole abundance. 
Solonen T(1), Ahola K, Karstinen T. Author information: (1)Luontotutkimus Solonen Oy, Neitsytsaarentie 7b B 147, FI-00960, Helsinki, Finland, 

Voles are often considered as harmful pests in agriculture and silviculture. Then, the knowledge of their abundance may be of considerable economical importance. Commonly used methods in the monitoring of vole abundances are relatively laborious, expensive, and spatially quite restricted. We demonstrate how the mean clutch size of the tawny owl Strix aluco may be cost-effectively used to predict relative densities of voles over large areas. Besides installing a number of suitable nest boxes, this vole monitoring system primarily includes only the inspection of the nest boxes and counting the number of tawny owl eggs found two times during a few weeks period in spring. Our results showed a considerable agreement between the fluctuations in the mean clutch size of tawny owls and the late spring abundance indices of small voles (Myodes, Microtus) in our study areas in southern Finland. The mean clutch size of the tawny owl reflected spring vole abundance over the spatial range examined, suggesting its suitability for general forecasting purposes. From the pest management point of view, an additional merit of the present method is that it may increase numbers of vole-eaters that provide biological control of vole populations. PMID: 26307687 [PubMed - in process] 

11. Conserv Biol. 2015 Aug 26. doi: 10.1111/cobi.12609. [Epub ahead of print] 

Quantifying the relative irreplaceability of important bird and biodiversity areas. 
Marco MD(1,)(2,)(3), Brooks T(4,)(5,)(6), Cuttelod A(7), Fishpool LD(8), Rondinini C(9), Smith RJ(10), Bennun L(11), Butchart SH(8), Ferrier S(12), Foppen RP(13,)(14,)(15), Joppa L(16), Juffe-Bignoli D(17), Knight AT(18,)(19,)(20), Lamoreux JF(21), Langhammer PF(22), May I(8), Possingham HP(18,)(19), Visconti P(16), Watson JE(23,)(24), Woodley S(25). Author information: (1)Global Mammal Assessment Program, Department of Biology and Biotechnologies, Sapienza Università di Roma, viale dell' Università 32, 00185, Rome, Italy. (2)ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science, The University of Queensland, 4072, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. (3)School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management, University of Queensland, 4072, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. (4)International Union for Conservation of Nature, 28 rue Mauverney, 1196, Gland, Switzerland. (5)World Agroforestry Center (ICRAF), University of the Philippines Los Baños, Laguna, 4031, Philippines. (6)School of Geography and Environmental Studies, University of Tasmania, Hobart, TAS, 7001, Australia. (7)International Union for Conservation of Nature, Sheraton House Castle Park, Cambridge, CB3 0AX, UK. (8)BirdLife International, Wellbrook Court, Girton Road, Cambridge, CB3 0NA, UK. (9)Global Mammal Assessment Program, Department of Biology and Biotechnologies, Sapienza Università di Roma, viale dell' Università 32, 00185, Rome, Italy. (10)Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology, School of Anthropology and Conservation, University of Kent, Canterbury, CT2 7NR, UK. (11)The Biodiversity Consultancy Ltd, 3E King's Parade, Cambridge, CB2 1SJ, UK. (12)CSIRO Land and Water Flagship, GPO Box 1700, Canberra, ACT, 2601, Australia. (13)Sovon, Dutch Centre for Field Ornithology, PO Box 6521, 6503 GA, Nijmegen, The Netherlands. (14)European Bird Census Council, P.O. Box 6521, 6503 GA, Nijmegen, The Netherlands. (15)Institute for Water and Wetland Research, Department of Animal Ecology and Ecophysiology, Radboud University, P.O. Box 9100, 6500 GL, Nijmegen, The Netherlands. (16)Microsoft Research Computational Science Laboratory, Cambridge, UK. (17)United Nations Environment Programme-World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC), 219 Huntingdon Road, CB3 0DL, Cambridge, UK. (18)ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science, The University of Queensland, 4072, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. (19)Department of Life Sciences, Imperial College London, Buckhurst Road, Ascot, Berkshire, SL5 7PY, UK. (20)Department of Botany, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, P.O. Box 77000, Port Elizabeth, 6031, South Africa. (21)National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Washington, DC, 20005, USA. (22)School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University, PO Box 874601, Tempe, Arizona, 85287-4601, USA. (23)School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management, University of Queensland, 4072, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. (24)Global Conservation Program, Wildlife Conservation Society, 2300 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, New York, 10460, USA. (25)WCPA-SSC Joint Task Force on Biodiversity and Protected Areas, International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), 64 Juniper Road, Chelsea, Quebec, J9B 1T3, Canada. 

World governments have committed to increase the global protected areas coverage by 2020, but the effectiveness of this commitment for protecting biodiversity depends on where new protected areas are located. Threshold-based and complementarity-based approaches have been independently used to identify important sites for biodiversity. Here we bring together these approaches by performing a complementarity-based analysis of irreplaceability in Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs; which are sites identified using a threshold-based approach). We determined whether irreplaceability values are higher inside than outside IBAs, and whether any observed difference depends on known characteristics of the IBAs. We focussed on three regions having comprehensive IBAs inventories and bird distribution atlases: Australia, Southern Africa and Europe. Irreplaceability values were significantly higher inside than outside IBAs, although differences were much smaller in Europe than elsewhere. Higher irreplaceability values in IBAs were associated with: presence and number of restricted-range species; number of criteria under which the site was identified; and mean geographic range size of the species for which the site was identified ('trigger species'). In addition, IBAs were characterised by higher irreplaceability values when using proportional species representation targets, rather than fixed targets. There were broadly comparable results both when measuring irreplaceability for trigger species and when considering all bird species, indicating a good surrogacy effect of the former. Recently the International Union for Conservation of Nature has convened a consultation to consolidate global standards for the identification of Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs), building from existing approaches like IBAs. Our results are important for informing this consultation, and in particular for a proposed irreplaceability criterion that will allow the new KBA standard to draw on the strengths of both threshold-based and complementarity-based approaches. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. PMID: 26307601 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

12. PLoS One. 2015 Aug 25;10(8):e0136582. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0136582. eCollection 2015. 

Body Condition Indices Predict Reproductive Success but Not Survival in a Sedentary, Tropical Bird. 
Milenkaya O(1), Catlin DH(2), Legge S(3), Walters JR(1). Author information: (1)Department of Biological Sciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, United States of America. (2)Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, United States of America. (3)Australian Wildlife Conservancy, Mornington Wildlife Sanctuary, Derby, Western Australia, Australia; Research Institute for Environment and Livelihoods, Charles Darwin University, Casuarina, Northern Territory, Australia. 

Body condition may predict individual fitness because those in better condition have more resources to allocate towards improving their fitness. However, the hypothesis that condition indices are meaningful proxies for fitness has been questioned. Here, we ask if intraspecific variation in condition indices predicts annual reproductive success and survival. We monitored a population of Neochmia phaeton (crimson finch), a sedentary, tropical passerine, for reproductive success and survival over four breeding seasons, and sampled them for commonly used condition indices: mass adjusted for body size, muscle and fat scores, packed cell volume, hemoglobin concentration, total plasma protein, and heterophil to lymphocyte ratio. Our study population is well suited for this research because individuals forage in common areas and do not hold territories such that variation in condition between individuals is not confounded by differences in habitat quality. Furthermore, we controlled for factors that are known to impact condition indices in our study population (e.g., breeding stage) such that we assessed individual condition relative to others in the same context. Condition indices that reflect energy reserves predicted both the probability of an individual fledging young and the number of young produced that survived to independence, but only during some years. Those that were relatively heavy for their body size produced about three times more independent young compared to light individuals. That energy reserves are a meaningful predictor of reproductive success in a sedentary passerine supports the idea that energy reserves are at least sometimes predictors of fitness. However, hematological indices failed to predict reproductive success and none of the indices predicted survival. Therefore, some but not all condition indices may be informative, but because we found that most indices did not predict any component of fitness, we question the ubiquitous interpretation of condition indices as surrogates for individual quality and fitness. PMID: 26305457 [PubMed - in process] 

13. PLoS One. 2015 Aug 25;10(8):e0136623. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0136623. eCollection 2015. 

The Butterflies of Barro Colorado Island, Panama: Local Extinction since the 1930s. 
Basset Y(1), Barrios H(2), Segar S(3), Srygley RB(4), Aiello A(5), Warren AD(6), Delgado F(7), Coronado J(5), Lezcano J(5), Arizala S(5), Rivera M(2), Perez F(5), Bobadilla R(5), Lopez Y(5), Ramirez JA(5). Author information: (1)Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Apartado 0843-03092, Panama City, Republic of Panama; Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia and Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre of Czech Academy of Sciences, Branišovská 31, 370 05, České Budějovice, Czech Republic; Universidad de Panamá, Maestria de Entomologia, 080814, Panama City, Republic of Panama. (2)Universidad de Panamá, Maestria de Entomologia, 080814, Panama City, Republic of Panama. (3)Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia and Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre of Czech Academy of Sciences, Branišovská 31, 370 05, České Budějovice, Czech Republic. (4)Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Apartado 0843-03092, Panama City, Republic of Panama; Northern Plains Agricultural Lab, USDA-Agricultural Research Service, 1500 N. Central Ave., Sidney, Montana, 59270, United States of America. (5)Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Apartado 0843-03092, Panama City, Republic of Panama. (6)McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, 3215 Hull Rd., P.O. Box 112710, Gainesville, Florida, 32611-2710, United States of America. (7)Universidad de Panamá, Centro Regional Universitario de Veraguas, Santiago, Republic of Panama. 

Few data are available about the regional or local extinction of tropical butterfly species. When confirmed, local extinction was often due to the loss of host-plant species. We used published lists and recent monitoring programs to evaluate changes in butterfly composition on Barro Colorado Island (BCI, Panama) between an old (1923-1943) and a recent (1993-2013) period. Although 601 butterfly species have been recorded from BCI during the 1923-2013 period, we estimate that 390 species are currently breeding on the island, including 34 cryptic species, currently only known by their DNA Barcode Index Number. Twenty-three butterfly species that were considered abundant during the old period could not be collected during the recent period, despite a much higher sampling effort in recent times. We consider these species locally extinct from BCI and they conservatively represent 6% of the estimated local pool of resident species. Extinct species represent distant phylogenetic branches and several families. The butterfly traits most likely to influence the probability of extinction were host growth form, wing size and host specificity, independently of the phylogenetic relationships among butterfly species. On BCI, most likely candidates for extinction were small hesperiids feeding on herbs (35% of extinct species). However, contrary to our working hypothesis, extinction of these species on BCI cannot be attributed to loss of host plants. In most cases these host plants remain extant, but they probably subsist at lower or more fragmented densities. Coupled with low dispersal power, this reduced availability of host plants has probably caused the local extinction of some butterfly species. Many more bird than butterfly species have been lost from BCI recently, confirming that small preserves may be far more effective at conserving invertebrates than vertebrates and, therefore, should not necessarily be neglected from a conservation viewpoint. PMID: 26305111 [PubMed - in process] 

14. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2015 Aug 24. pii: 14-0590. [Epub ahead of print] 

Surveillance Potential of Non-Native Hawaiian Birds for Detection of West Nile Virus. 
Hofmeister EK(1), Dusek RJ(2), Brand CJ(2). Author information: (1)USGS National Wildlife Health Center, Madison, Wisconsin (2)USGS National Wildlife Health Center, Madison, Wisconsin. 

West Nile virus (WNV) was first detected in North America in 1999. Alaska and Hawaii (HI) remain the only U.S. states in which transmission of WNV has not been detected. Dead bird surveillance has played an important role in the detection of the virus geographically, as well as temporally. In North America, corvids have played a major role in WNV surveillance; however, the only corvid in HI is the endangered Hawaiian crow that exists only in captivity, thus precluding the use of this species for WNV surveillance in HI. To evaluate the suitability of alternate avian species for WNV surveillance, we experimentally challenged seven abundant non-native bird species present in HI with WNV and compared mortality, viremia, oral shedding of virus, and seroconversion. For detection of WNV in oral swabs, we compared viral culture, reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, and the RAMP(®) test. For detection of antibodies to WNV, we compared an indirect and a competitive enzyme-linked immunoassay. We found four species (house sparrow, house finch, Japanese white-eye, and Java sparrow) that may be useful in dead bird surveillance for WNV; while common myna, zebra dove, and spotted dove survived infection and may be useful in serosurveillance. © The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. PMID: 26304918 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

15. Anim Sci J. 2015 Aug 24. doi: 10.1111/asj.12407. [Epub ahead of print] 

Improving transport container design to reduce broiler chicken PSE (pale, soft, exudative) meat in Brazil. 
Spurio RS(1), Soares AL(1), Carvalho RH(2), Silveira Junior V(3), Grespan M(4), Oba A(2), Shimokomaki M(1,)(2,)(5). Author information: (1)Graduate Program in Food Science, Department of Food Science and Technology, State University of Londrina, PR, Brazil. (2)Graduate Program in Animal Science Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, State University of Londrina, PR, Brazil. (3)Faculty of Food Engineering, State University of Campinas, SP, Brazil. (4)DVM, Cascavel, PR, Brazil. (5)Professional Master in Food Technology Program, Paraná Federal Technological University, Campus Londrina, Londrina, PR, Brazil. 

Throughout the chicken production chain, transport from farm to the commercial abattoir is one of the most critical sources of stress, particularly heat stress. The aim of this work was to describe the performance of a new prototype truck container designed to improve the microenvironment and reduce the incidence of pale, soft and exudative (PSE) meat and dead on arrival (DOA) occurrences. Experiments were carried out for four different conditions: regular and prototype truck, both with and without wetting loaded cages at the farm (for bird thermal stress relief) just before transporting. While there was no difference in the DOA index (P ≥ 0.05), the prototype truck caused a reduction (P < 0.05) in the occurrence of PSE meat by 66.3% and 49.6% with and without wetting, respectively. The results of this experiment clearly revealed a low-cost solution for transporting chickens that yields better animal welfare conditions and improves meat quality. © 2015 Japanese Society of Animal Science. PMID: 26304672 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

16. Virus Genes. 2015 Aug 25. [Epub ahead of print] 

A novel gemycircularvirus from experimental rats. 
Li W(1), Gu Y, Shen Q, Yang S, Wang X, Wan Y, Zhang W. Author information: (1)Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang, 212013, Jiangsu, China. 

Recently, gemycircularviruses have been found in humans and various species of animals. Here, a novel gemycircularvirus named Ch-zjrat-01 from blood samples of experimental rats was characterized. The novel gemycircularvirus encodes two major proteins, including a capsid protein (Cap) and a replication-associated protein (Rep). Phylogenetic analysis based on the amino acid sequence of Rep indicated that Ch-zjrat-01 clusters with two gemycircularviruses discovered from bird (KF371635) and mosquito (HQ335086), sharing 48.7 and 49.4 % sequence identities with them, respectively. PMID: 26303898 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

17. Mol Phylogenet Evol. 2015 Aug 22. pii: S1055-7903(15)00248-1. doi: 10.1016/j.ympev.2015.08.017. [Epub ahead of print] 

Geographic isolation drives divergence of uncorrelated genetic and song variation in the Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush (Catharus frantzii; Aves: Turdidae). 
Ortiz-Ramírez MF(1), Andersen MJ(2), Zaldívar-Riverón A(3), Ornelas JF(4), Navarro-Sigüenza AG(5). Author information: (1)Museo de Zoología, Facultad de Ciencias, UNAM, Apartado Postal 70-399, México, D. F. 04510, Mexico; Posgrado en Ciencias Biológicas, UNAM, Mexico. Electronic address: (2)Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Biodiversity Institute, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045, USA; Department of Ornithology, American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY 10024, USA. (3)Colección Nacional de Insectos, Instituto de Biología, UNAM, Apartado Postal 70-233, México, D. F. 04510, Mexico. (4)Departamento de Biología Evolutiva, Instituto de Ecología AC, Xalapa, Veracruz, Mexico. (5)Museo de Zoología, Facultad de Ciencias, UNAM, Apartado Postal 70-399, México, D. F. 04510, Mexico. 

Montane barriers influence the evolutionary history of lineages by promoting isolation of populations. The effects of these historical processes are evident in patterns of differentiation among extant populations, which are often expressed as genetic and behavioral variation between populations. We investigated the effects of geographic barriers on the evolutionary history of a Mesoamerican bird by studying patterns of genetic and vocal variation in the Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush (Turdidae: Catharus frantzii), a non-migratory oscine bird that inhabits montane forests from central Mexico to Panama. We reconstructed the phylogeographic history and estimated divergence times between populations using Bayesian and maximum likelihood methods. We found strong support for the existence of four mitochondrial lineages of C. frantzii corresponding to isolated mountain ranges: Sierra Madre Oriental; Sierra Madre del Sur; the highlands of Chiapas, Guatemala, and El Salvador; and the Talamanca Cordillera. Vocal features in C. frantzii were highly variable among the four observed clades, but vocal variation and genetic variation were uncorrelated. Song variation in C. frantzii suggests that sexual selection and cultural drift could be important factors driving song differentiation in C. frantzii. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc. PMID: 26302950 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

18. J Comp Psychol. 2015 Aug 24. [Epub ahead of print] 

A Comparison of Spontaneous Problem-Solving Abilities in Three Estrildid Finch (Taeniopygia guttata, Lonchura striata var. domestica, Stagonopleura guttata) Species. 
Schmelz M, Krüger O, Call J, Krause ET. 

Cognition has been extensively studied in primates while other, more distantly related taxa have been neglected for a long time. More recently, there has been an increased interest in avian cognition, with the focus mostly on big-brained species like parrots and corvids. However, the majority of bird species has never systematically been studied in diverse cognitive tasks other than memory and learning tasks, so not much can yet be concluded about the relevant factors for the evolution of cognition. Here we examined 3 species of the estrildid finch family in problem-solving tasks. These granivorous, non-tool-using birds are distributed across 3 continents and are not known for high levels of innovation or spontaneous problem solving in the wild. In this study, our aim was to find such abilities in these species, assess what role domestication might play with a comparison of 4 genetically separated zebra finch strains, and to look for between-species differences between zebra finches, Bengalese finches, and diamond firetails. Furthermore, we established a 3-step spontaneous problem-solving procedure with increasing levels of complexity. Results showed that some estrildid finches were generally capable of spontaneously solving problems of variable complexity to obtain food. We found striking differences in these abilities between species, but not between strains within species, and offer a discussion of potential reasons. Our established methodology can now be applied to a larger number of bird species for phylogenetic comparisons on the behavioral level to get a deeper understanding of the evolution of cognitive abilities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved). PMID: 26301340 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

19. J Gen Virol. 2015 Jul 9. doi: 10.1099/jgv.0.000231. [Epub ahead of print] 

Next Generation Sequencing shows West Nile virus quasispecies diversification after a single passage in a carrion crow (Corvus corone) in vivo infection model. 
Dridi M(1), Rosseel T(2), Orton R(3), Johnson P(4), Lecollinet S(5), Muylkens B(6), Lambrecht B(7), van Borm S(8). Author information: (1)Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Center. (2)Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Center. (3)University of Glasgow. (4)University of Glasgow. (5)French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety. (6)University of Namur. (7)Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Center. (8)Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Center, Belgium. 

West Nile virus (WNV) occurs as a population of genetic variants (quasispecies) infecting a single animal. Previous low resolution viral genetic diversity estimates in sampled wild birds and mosquitoes and in multiple passage adaptation studies in vivo or in cell culture, suggest that WNV genetic diversification is mostly limited to the mosquito vector. This study investigates genetic diversification of WNV in avian hosts during a single passage using next generation sequencing. Wild-captured Carrion crows were subcutaneously infected using a clonal Middle-East WNV. Blood samples were collected on 2 and 4 days post-infection. A RT-PCR approach was used to amplify the WNV genome directly from serum samples prior to next generation sequencing resulting in an average depth of at least 700x in each sample. Appropriate controls were sequenced to discriminate biologically relevant low frequency variants from experimentally introduced errors. The WNV populations in the wild crows showed significant diversification away from the inoculum virus quasispecies structure. By contrast, WNV populations in intracerebrally infected day-old chickens did not diversify from that of the inoculum. Where previous studies concluded that WNV genetic diversification is only experimentally demonstrated in its permissive insect vector species, we have experimentally shown significant diversification of WNV populations in a wild bird reservoir species. PMID: 26297666 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

birdRS-Latest News

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

What's new for 'birdRS' in PubMed: August Week 3 2015

birdRS Latest News

This message contains My NCBI what's new results from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) at the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM).

PubMed Results

1. J Parasitol. 2015 Aug 4. [Epub ahead of print] 

Casalins L(1), Brugni N(2), Rauque CA(3). Author information: (1)a Universidad Nacional del Comahue. (2)b Universidad Nacional del Comahue. (3)c Universidad Nacional del Comahue, Universidad Nacional del Comahue. 

The manipulation of intermediate host behavior may increase chances of parasite transmission to the definitive host. In freshwater environments of the Neotropical Region, studies on behavioral manipulations by parasites are scarce, and the majority of them only considered a single parasite species and/or 1 life-stage of a particular parasite species. In Andean Patagonian lakes of Argentina, the amphipod Hyalella patagonica is infected by larvae of the fish nematode Hedruris suttonae and by the bird acanthocephalan Pseudocorynosoma sp. The 3 objectives of the present study were to determine whether H. suttonae and Pseudocorynosoma sp. differ in their effects on behavior of H. patagonica, whether such modification is associated with parasite development, and to assess the associations between behavioral traits. From naturally parasitized amphipods, activity (swimming levels) and phototaxis (light preference) was measured. Only in phototaxis trials, larvae of H. suttonae induced significantly higher levels of photophilia, so we infer that they are manipulative. Scores of activity and phototaxis were positive and significantly related for non-parasitized female amphipods and for amphipods parasitized by larvae of Pseudocorynosoma sp. but were not associated in amphipods parasitized with larvae of H. suttonae (infective and non infective), suggesting that infection broke the relationship between these variables. PMID: 26295566 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

2. Evolution. 2015 Aug 21. doi: 10.1111/evo.12754. [Epub ahead of print] 

Long lifespans have evolved with long and monounsaturated fatty acids in birds. 
Galván I(1), Naudí A(2), Erritzøe J(3), Møller AP(4), Barja G(5), Pamplona R(2). Author information: (1)Departamento de Ecología Evolutiva, Estación Biológica de Doñana - CSIC, c/ Américo Vespucio s/s, 41092, Sevilla, Spain. (2)Departamento de Medicina Experimental, Universidad de Lleida - Instituto de Investigación Biomédica de Lleida (IRBLleida), 25198, Lleida, Spain. (3)Taps Old Rectory, 6040, Christiansfeld, Denmark. (4)Laboratoire d'Ecologie, Systématique et Evolution, Université Paris-Sud 11, Bâtiment 362, 91405, Orsay Cedex, France. (5)Departamento de Fisiología Animal II, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, c/ José Antonio Novais 2, 28040, Madrid, Spain. 

The evolution of lifespan is a central question in evolutionary biology, begging the question why there is so large variation among taxa. Specifically, a central quest is to unravel proximate causes of ageing. Here we show that the degree of unsaturation of liver fatty acids predicts maximum lifespan in 107 bird species. In these birds, the degree of fatty acid unsaturation is positively related to maximum lifespan across species. This is due to a positive effect of monounsaturated fatty acid content, while polyunsaturated fatty acid content negatively correlates with maximum lifespan. Furthermore, fatty acid chain length unsuspectedly increases with maximum lifespan independently of degree of unsaturation. These findings tune theories on the proximate causes of ageing while providing evidence that the evolution of lifespan in birds occurs in association with fatty acid profiles. This finding suggests that studies of proximate and ultimate questions may facilitate our understanding of these central evolutionary questions. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. PMID: 26294378 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

3. Avian Dis. 2015 Mar;59(1):165-70. 

Electron-Beam-Inactivated Vaccine Against Salmonella Enteritidis Colonization in Molting Hens. 
Jesudhasan PR, McReynolds JL, Byrd AJ, He H, Genovese KJ, Droleskey R, Swaggerty CL, Kogut MH, Duke S, Nisbet DJ, Praveen C, Pillai SD. 

Electron-beam (eBeam) irradiation technology has a variety of applications in modern society. The underlying hypothesis was that eBeam-inactivated Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis (SE) cells can serve as a vaccine to control SE colonization and shedding in poultry birds. An eBeam dose of 2.5 kGy (kilograys) was used to inactivate a high-titer (10(8) colony-forming units [CFU]) preparation of SE cells. Microscopic studies revealed that the irradiation did not damage the bacterial cell membranes. The vaccine efficacy was evaluated by administering the eBeam-killed SE cells intramuscularly (1 x 10(6) CFU/bird) into 50-wk-old single comb white leghorn hens. On day 14 postvaccination, the hens were challenged orally with live SE cells (1 x 10(9) CFU) and SE colonization of liver, spleen, ceca, and ovaries determined on day 23. Blood samples were collected on days 0, 14, and 23 postvaccination and the sera were analyzed to quantify SE-specific IgG titers. The vaccinated chickens exhibited significantly (P < 0.0001) higher SE-specific IgG antibody responses and reduced SE ceca colonization (1.46 ± 0.39 logi10 CFU/g) compared to nonvaccinated birds (5.32 ± 0.32 log10 CFU/g). They also exhibited significantly lower SE colonization of the ovaries (1/30), spleen (3/30), liver (4/30), and ceca (7/30) compared to nonvaccinated birds. These results provide empirical evidence that eBeam-based SE vaccines are immunogenic and are capable of protecting chickens against SE colonization. The advantages of eBeam-based vaccine technology are that it is nonthermal, avoids the use of formalin, and can be used to generate inactivated vaccines rapidly to address strain-specific infections in farms or flocks. PMID: 26292553 [PubMed - in process] 

4. Avian Dis. 2015 Mar;59(1):153-6. 

Persistence and Tissue Distribution of Infectious Bursal Disease Virus Serotypes 1 and 2 in Turkeys. 
Abdul R, Murgia MV, Saif YM. 

Two experiments were conducted to determine the persistence and tissue distribution of serotypes 1 and 2 of infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV) in specific-pathogen-free and vaccinated turkeys. In Experiment 1, three groups of 2-wk-old turkey poults, including a negative control group, were used. In groups 1 and 2, 13 poults in each group were challenged with either serotype 1 (STC) or serotype 2 (OH) strains using an inoculum of 10(4) 50% embryo infectious dose (EID50)/0.2 ml/bird. Thymus, bursa, spleen, kidney, lungs, liver, pancreas, caecum, and breast and thigh muscles were sampled at predetermined intervals. The bursal tissues from birds inoculated with either serotype were reverse transcriptase-PCR (RT-PCR) positive up to 21 days postinoculation (DPI). In both groups virus isolation from bursas was possible up to 14 DPI. Except for the bursas and spleens in birds inoculated with serotype 1 and bursas in birds inoculated with serotype 2, all other tissues were RT-PCR negative. In Experiment 2, five groups of turkey poults were used. At 4 wk of age, group 1 was challenged with a serotype 1 STC strain and group 2 with serotype 2 OH strain using an inoculum size of 10(2) EID50/0.2 ml for both serotypes. Groups 3 and 4 were vaccinated at 2 wk of age using an inactivated serotype 1 IBDV vaccine. At 2 wk postvaccination, groups 3 and 4 were challenged with STC and OH strains respectively. From group 1, bursal, spleen, and liver tissues were RT-PCR positive up to 14 DPI; breast muscle and kidney tissues were positive up to 7 DPI; and lungs and pancreatic tissues were positive up to 3 DPI. From group 2, bursal tissues were RT-PCR positive up to 14 DPI and lung tissues up to 3 DPI. All of the tissue samples collected from groups 3, 4, and 5 were RT-PCR negative. Virus could not be isolated from RT-PCR positive bursal homogenate. In this work, it was confirmed that the virus persisted in the bursa longer than in any other tissues. The difference in the results between Experiments 1 and 2 could be due to the age of poults at vaccination and the higher inoculum size used in Experiment 1. This study indicates that turkeys are more resistant to IBDV as compared to chickens. Viruses of serotypes 1 and 2 infect turkeys and persist in bursal tissue for 14 days and RNA was detected up to 21 days. PMID: 26292550 [PubMed - in process] 

5. Avian Dis. 2015 Mar;59(1):74-8. 

Effects of the Physical Form of Diet on the Outcome of an Artificial Salmonella Infection in Broilers. 
Ratert C, Sander SJ, Verspohl J, Beyerbach M, Kamphues J. 

To prove the hypothesis that the physical form of diet affects the outcome of an artificial infection with Salmonella Enteritidis in broilers, 7-day-old birds were allotted to one of four groups and fed botanically, and nearly also chemically identical diets, differing in grinding and further compaction. In total, two birds from each group (age 14 days) were administered on average 1.06 x 10(8) colony-forming units (CFU) of Salmonella Enteritidis directly into the crop by gavage and immediately put back as "seeder birds" into their respective groups. The salmonella status of each bird was analyzed by cloacal swabs, and at postmortem examination, cecal content and liver tissue samples were taken. Shedding (measured by cloacal swabs) was reduced significantly (P < 0.05) in groups offered the coarsely ground and pelleted diet and the diet including whole wheat compared with the groups fed the finely ground and pelleted and the coarsely ground and extruded diet. Nevertheless, only broilers fed the diet containing whole wheat showed a significantly (P < 0.05) lower frequency of Salmonella Enteritidis isolation in the cecal content and liver tissue. This diet was characterized by the highest percentage of particles > 2 mm. In this study the physical form of diet affected the outcome of an artificial infection with Salmonella Enteritidis significantly. PMID: 26292538 [PubMed - in process] 

6. Avian Dis. 2015 Mar;59(1):38-45. 

A Multifactorial Analysis of the Extent to Which Eimeria and Fishmeal Predispose Broiler Chickens to Necrotic Enteritis. 
Rodgers NJ, Swick RA, Geier MS, Moore RJ, Choct M, Wu SB. 

Necrotic enteritis (NE) is an important infectious disease in chickens. Predisposing factors play critical roles both in disease outbreaks in the field and in models for experimental induction of disease. Systematic manipulation and study of predisposing factors help to optimize methods for the experimental reproduction of disease. The nature of such factors may play a confounding role in challenge models and, therefore, warrant investigation to determine their importance in industry-relevant NE reproduction models. In the present study, we examined the roles of dietary fishmeal inclusion, Eimeria inoculation (E), and Clostridium perfringens challenge (C) on broiler growth performance and induction of NE infection. The results showed that E, preceding C, greatly increased the severity of NE induced in broiler chickens, but fishmeal addition played only a marginal role in the challenge model. Bird performance was significantly affected by all three factors during the 35-day experimental period. Fishmeal increased body weight, but statistically significant effects of fishmeal were not observed on feed conversion ratio (FCR) and feed intake. Both Eimeria and C. perfringens significantly reduced body weight gain and feed intake. E but not C led to significantly poorer FCR. These findings indicate that dietary fishmeal may be removed from the model to allow the performance results of challenged chicks to be equivalent to the performance of chicks in the field. In conclusion, the present study demonstrates that an NE challenge model without fishmeal is valid and removes bird performance bias in the model introduced by feeding high fishmeal diets, refining the model to facilitate the yield of more commercially relevant results. PMID: 26292532 [PubMed - in process] 

7. Braz J Biol. 2015 Aug 18. pii: S1519-69842015005000914. [Epub ahead of print] 

Bird assemblage mist-netted in an Atlantic Forest area: a comparison between vertically-mobile and ground-level nets. 
Vecchi MB(1), Alves M(1). Author information: (1)Departamento de Ecologia, Instituto de Biologia Roberto Alcantara Gomes, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, BR. 

Mist nets may be opened at different heights in the forest, but they are seldom used over 3 m above the ground. We used two different methods to compare species richness, composition, and relative abundance and trophic structure of the bird assemblage at Ilha Grande (with a 290 birds standardization): conventional ground-level nets (0-2.4 m height range) and elevated nets (0-17 m) with an adjustable-height system (modified from Humphrey et al., 1968) that we call vertically-mobile nets. There were significant differences in capture frequencies between methods for about 20% of the species (Chi-squared test, P<0.05), and the two methods caught different assemblages. Ground-level nets recorded less species, and they comparatively overestimated mainly Suboscine insectivores and underestimated frugivores and nectarivores. Different sampling methods used at the same location may result in very different diagnoses of the avifauna present, both qualitatively and quantitatively. We encourage studies involving mist net sampling to include the upper strata to more accurately represent the avifauna in Atlantic Forest. PMID: 26292105 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

8. J Comp Neurol. 2015 Aug 19. doi: 10.1002/cne.23886. [Epub ahead of print] 

The second tectofugal pathway in a songbird (Taeniopygia guttata) revisited: tectal and lateral pontine projections to the posterior thalamus, thence to the intermediate nidopallium. 
Wild JM(1), Gaede AH(2). Author information: (1)Department of Anatomy with Radiology, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand. (2)Department of Zoology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. 

Birds are almost always said to have two visual pathways from the retina to the telencephalon: thalamofugal terminating in the Wulst, and tectofugal terminating in the entopallium. Often ignored is a second tectofugal pathway that terminates in the nidopallium medial to and separate from the entopallium (e.g., Gamlin and Cohen, J Comp Neurol, 250: 296-310, 1986). Using standard tract tracing and electroanatomical techniques, we extend earlier evidence of a second tectofugal pathway in songbirds (Wild, J Comp Neurol, 349:512-535, 1994), by showing that visual projections to nucleus uvaeformis (Uva) of the posterior thalamus in zebra finches extend farther rostrally than to Uva as generally recognized in the context of the song control system. Projections to 'rUva' resulted from injections of biotinylated dextran amine into the lateral pontine nucleus (PL), and led to extensive retrograde labeling of tectal neurons, predominantly in layer 13. Injections in rUva also resulted in extensive retrograde labeling of predominantly layer 13 tectal neurons, retrograde labeling of PL neurons, and anterograde labeling of PL. It thus appears that some tectal neurons could project to rUva and PL via branched axons. Ascending projections of rUva terminated throughout a visually responsive region of the intermediate nidopallium (NI) lying between nucleus interface medially and the entopallium laterally. Lastly, as shown by Clarke in pigeons (J Comp Neurol, 174:535-552, 1977), we found that PL projects to caudal cerebellar folia. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID: 26287809 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

9. Int J Mol Sci. 2015 Aug 17;16(8):19433-46. doi: 10.3390/ijms160819433. 

Molecular and Functional Characterization of Thioredoxin 1from Korean Rose Bitterling (Rhodeus uyekii). 
Kim J(1), Moon JY(2), Kim WJ(3), Kim DG(4), Nam BH(5), Kim YO(6), Park JY(7), An CM(8), Kong HJ(9). Author information: (1)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (2)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (3)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (4)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (5)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (6)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (7)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (8)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. (9)Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea. 

Thioredoxin is a multifunctional antioxidant enzyme that belongs to the reductase family. In this study, we cloned and characterized thioredoxin 1 cDNA from the Korean rose bitterling Rhodeus uyekii (RuTrx). The full-length RuTrx cDNA consists of 674 bp with a 324 nt open reading frame (ORF) encoding a 107 aa protein. The deduced RuTrx amino acid sequence indicated a characteristic redox active site, (31)WCGPC(35). Pairwise alignment revealed RuTrx amino acid identity (55.1%-83.2%) with orthologs from various species of mammalia, amphibia, fish and bird. Phylogenetic analysis was conducted to determine the evolutionary position of RuTrx. Expression analysis showed that RuTrx transcripts were present in all of the tissues examined, and was high in the hepatopancreas of R. uyekii. During early development, the expression of RuTrx transcripts was increased. Recombinant RuTrx protein (rRuTrx) was tested for its capacity to serve as an antioxidant enzyme using a metal-catalyzed oxidation (MCO) system. The ability of rRuTrx to protect against supercoiled DNA cleavage due to oxidative nicking increased in a dose-dependent manner. In Raw264.7 cells, Dihydroethidium (DHE) staining for ROS production indicated the antioxidant activity of rRuTrx. Together, these findings suggest that RuTrx may play a role in maintaining the redox state balance in Korean rose bitterling R. uyekii. PMID: 26287186 [PubMed - in process] 

10. Poult Sci. 2015 Aug 17. pii: pev243. [Epub ahead of print] 

Evaluation of yeast dietary supplementation in broilers challenged or not with Salmonella on growth performance, cecal microbiota composition and Salmonella in ceca, cloacae and carcass skin. 
Mountzouris KC(1), Dalaka E(2), Palamidi I(2), Paraskeuas V(2), Demey V(3), Theodoropoulos G(4), Fegeros K(2). Author information: (1)Department of Nutritional Physiology and Feeding, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 118 55, Athens, Greece (2)Department of Nutritional Physiology and Feeding, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 118 55, Athens, Greece. (3)Lallemand Animal Nutrition, 19 rue de Briquetiers, BP 59, 31702, Blagnac, France. (4)Department of Anatomy and Physiology of Farm Animals, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 118 55, Athens, Greece. 

The dietary supplementation of Saccharomyces cerevisiae var. boulardii was evaluated in broilers challenged or not challenged with Salmonella Enteritidis (SE) using a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement. Depending on yeast inclusion at 0 (C) or 1 × 10(9) cfu/kg diet (Y) and SE challenge (0 or log 6.3 cfu/bird) on d 15, the experiment had four treatments C, Y, C-SE, and Y-SE, respectively. Each treatment had seven replicate floor pens with 15 broilers. Growth performance responses were determined weekly and overall for the 5 week experimental period. Salmonella levels and prevalence in ceca, cloacae, and carcass skin were determined by culture procedures, while cecal microbiota was determined by real time PCR. Yeast supplementation had no effect (PY > 0.05) on growth performance. For the overall post SE-challenge period (i.e., wk 3 to wk 5), Salmonella reduced body weight gain (BWG) (PSE < 0.001), feed intake (FI) (PSE = 0.032), and the European production efficiency (EPEF) factor (PSE = 0.005). Broilers Y-SE had higher (P < 0.001) overall BW gain compared to C-SE ones. Overall mortality was 2.14% and did not differ (P > 0.05) between treatments. Reduced Salmonella levels in the cloacae (P = 0.014) and on the breast skin (P = 0.006) and lower prevalence on the neck skin (P = 0.007) were noted for treatment Y-SE compared to C-SE. Yeast supplementation did not have an effect (P > 0.05) on cecal microbiota composition at d 1 and d 21 post SE-challenge. On the contrary, SE-challenge reduced cecal levels of total bacteria (PSE = 0.002), E. coli (PSE = 0.006), Bifidobacterium spp. (PSE = 0.006), Bacteroides spp. (PSE = 0.010), and Clostridial populations belonging to cluster I and cluster XIVa, (PSE = 0.047 and PSE = 0.001, respectively) on d 1 post SE-challenge. At 21 d post SE-challenge, only the levels of cecal Lactobacillus spp. (PSE = 0.001) and Bifidobacterium spp. (PSE = 0.049) were reduced compared to the non SE-challenged groups. In conclusion, yeast supplementation in SE challenged broilers (Y-SE) was beneficial for growth performance and reduced Salmonella presence compared to C-SE ones. The disturbance of cecal microbiota balance by SE merits further investigation for potential implications in gut and overall bird health. © 2015 Poultry Science Association Inc. PMID: 26286998 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

11. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2015 Aug 17. pii: trv066. [Epub ahead of print] 

A review of West Nile and Usutu virus co-circulation in Europe: how much do transmission cycles overlap? 
Nikolay B(1). Author information: (1)Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK 

Due to the increasing global spread of arboviruses, the geographic extent of virus co-circulation is expanding. This complicates the diagnosis of febrile conditions and can have direct effects on the epidemiology. As previously demonstrated, subsequent infections by two closely related viruses, such as those belonging to the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) serocomplex, can lead to partial or complete cross-immunity, altering the risk of infections or the outcome of disease. Two flaviviruses that may interact at population level are West Nile virus (WNV) and Usutu virus (USUV). These pathogens have antigenic cross-reactivity and affect human and animal populations throughout Europe. This systematic review investigates the overlap of WNV and USUV transmission cycles, not only geographically but also in terms of host and vector ranges. Co-circulation of WNV and USUV was reported in 10 countries and the viruses were found to infect 34 common bird species belonging to 11 orders. Moreover, four mosquito species are potential vectors for both viruses. Taken together, these data suggest that WNV and USUV transmission overlaps substantially in Europe and highlight the importance of further studies investigating the interactions between the two viruses within host and vector populations. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: PMID: 26286946 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

12. PLoS Biol. 2015 Aug 18;13(8):e1002225. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002225. eCollection 2015. 

Intractable Tangles in the Bird Family Tree. 
Roberts RG(1). Author information: (1)Public Library of Science, Cambridge, United Kingdom. 

Rapid sequential speciation events can outpace the fixation of genetic variants, resulting in a family tree that lacks clear branching patterns. A new study of bird genomes reveals such an explosive super-radiation that may coincide with the mass extinction at the end of the Cretaceous period. PMID: 26284616 [PubMed - in process] 

13. Front Psychol. 2015 Jul 28;6:1082. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01082. eCollection 2015. 

Can a bird brain do phonology? 
Samuels BD(1). Author information: (1)Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Science, Pomona College Claremont, CA, USA ; Center for Craniofacial Molecular Biology, University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA, USA. 

A number of recent studies have revealed correspondences between song- and language-related neural structures, pathways, and gene expression in humans and songbirds. Analyses of vocal learning, song structure, and the distribution of song elements have similarly revealed a remarkable number of shared characteristics with human speech. This article reviews recent developments in the understanding of these issues with reference to the phonological phenomena observed in human language. This investigation suggests that birds possess a host of abilities necessary for human phonological computation, as evidenced by behavioral, neuroanatomical, and molecular genetic studies. Vocal-learning birds therefore present an excellent model for studying some areas of human phonology, though differences in the primitives of song and language as well as the absence of a human-like morphosyntax make human phonology differ from birdsong phonology in crucial ways. PMCID: PMC4516810 PMID: 26284006 [PubMed] 

14. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Aug 17. pii: 201504788. [Epub ahead of print] 

Confronting and resolving competing values behind conservation objectives. 
Karp DS(1), Mendenhall CD(2), Callaway E(3), Frishkoff LO(2), Kareiva PM(4), Ehrlich PR(5), Daily GC(6). Author information: (1)Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720; The Nature Conservancy, Seattle, WA 98105; Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305; (2)Center for Conservation Biology, Department of Biology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305; (3)Department of English, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106; (4)The Nature Conservancy, Seattle, WA 98105; (5)Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305; Center for Conservation Biology, Department of Biology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305; (6)Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305; Center for Conservation Biology, Department of Biology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305; Global Economic Dynamics and the Biosphere, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm SE-104 05, Sweden; Stockholm Resilience Centre, University of Stockholm, Stockholm SE-106 91, Sweden. 

Diverse motivations for preserving nature both inspire and hinder its conservation. Optimal conservation strategies may differ radically depending on the objective. For example, creating nature reserves may prevent extinctions through protecting severely threatened species, whereas incentivizing farmland hedgerows may benefit people through bolstering pest-eating or pollinating species. Win-win interventions that satisfy multiple objectives are alluring, but can also be elusive. To achieve better outcomes, we developed and implemented a practical typology of nature conservation framed around seven common conservation objectives. Using an intensively studied bird assemblage in southern Costa Rica as a case study, we applied the typology in the context of biodiversity's most pervasive threat: habitat conversion. We found that rural habitats in a varied tropical landscape, comprising small farms, villages, forest fragments, and forest reserves, provided biodiversity-driven processes that benefit people, such as pollination, seed dispersal, and pest consumption. However, species valued for their rarity, endemism, and evolutionary distinctness declined in farmland. Conserving tropical forest on farmland increased species that international tourists value, but not species discussed in Costa Rican newspapers. Despite these observed trade-offs, our analyses also revealed promising synergies. For example, we found that maintaining forest cover surrounding farms in our study region would likely enhance most conservation objectives at minimal expense to others. Overall, our typology provides a framework for resolving the competing objectives of modern conservation. PMID: 26283400 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

15. Infect Genet Evol. 2015 Aug 14. pii: S1567-1348(15)00324-X. doi: 10.1016/j.meegid.2015.08.001. [Epub ahead of print] 

Unique genomic organization of a novel Avipoxvirus detected in turkey (Meleagris gallopavo). 
Bányai K(1), Palya V(2), Dénes B(3), Glávits R(3), Ivanics É(3), Horváth B(4), Farkas SL(5), Marton S(5), Bálint Á(3), Gyuranecz M(5), Erdélyi K(3), Dán Á(3). Author information: (1)Institute for Veterinary Medical Research, Centre for Agricultural Research, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary. Electronic address: (2)CEVA Phylaxia, Budapest, Hungary. (3)Veterinary Diagnostic Directorate, National Food Chain Safety Office, Budapest, Hungary. (4)Biological Research Center, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Szeged, Hungary. (5)Institute for Veterinary Medical Research, Centre for Agricultural Research, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary. 

Avipoxviruses are emerging pathogens affecting over 200 bird species worldwide. Genetic characterization of avipoxviruses is performed by analysis of genomic regions encoding the 4b and DNA polymerase. Whole genome sequence data are limited to a few avipoxvirus isolates. Based on phylogenetic analysis three major genetic clades are distinguished. In this study we report a novel avipoxvirus strain causing skin lesions in domestic turkey. The virus was identified in Hungary during 2011 in a flock of turkey vaccinated against avipoxvirus infection. The genome of the isolated strain, TKPV-HU1124/2011, was uniquely short (∼188.5 kbp) and was predicted to encode reduced number of proteins. Phylogenetic analysis of the genes encoding the 4b and DNA polymerase separated TKPV-HU1124/2011 from other turkey origin avipoxviruses and classified it into a new genetic clade. This study permits new insight into the genetic and genomic heterogeneity of avipoxviruses and pinpoints the importance of strain diversity in vaccine efficacy. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. PMID: 26282613 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

16. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2015 Aug 19. [Epub ahead of print] 

Dietary Selenium Status Regulates the Transcriptions of Selenoproteome and Activities of Selenoenzymes in Chicken Kidney at Low or Super-nutritional Levels. 
Xu JX(1), Zhang C, Cao CY, Zhu SY, Li H, Sun YC, Li JL. Author information: (1)College of Veterinary Medicine, Northeast Agricultural University, Harbin, 150030, People's Republic of China. 

To determine dietary selenium (Se) status regulates the transcriptions of selenoproteome and activities of selenoenzymes in chicken kidney, 1-day-old chickens received low Se (0.028 mg Se per kg of diet) or super-nutritional Se (3.0 or 5.0 mg Se per kg of diet) in their diets for 8 weeks. It was observed that dietary low or super-nutritional Se did not make renal appearance pathological changes in chicken. Low Se significantly reduced total antioxidant capability (T-AOC), glutathione (GSH) content, but malondialdehyde (MDA) content in the kidney increased and decreased glutathione peroxidase (Gpx) and thioredoxin reductase (TrxR) activity with changes in their mRNA levels. Super-nutritional Se (3.0 mg/kg) increased T-AOC and GSH contents then made them reduce, but it reduced MDA content significantly, elevated then reduced Gpx activity, and decreased TrxR activity with changes in their mRNA levels. Dietary low Se downregulated the mRNA expressions of Gpx1-4, Txnrd3, Sepn1, Selw, Sepx1, Selh, and SEPSECS. At super-nutritional Se, most selenoproteins were upregulated in chicken kidney, but Sepp2 and Sep15 was only upregulated in Se excess (5.0 mg/kg) bird. These results indicated that dietary Se status stabilizes normal renal physiology function via regulation of the selenoprotemic transcriptions and selenoenzyme activities in avian. PMID: 26282526 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

17. Berl Munch Tierarztl Wochenschr. 2015 Jul-Aug;128(7-8):340-4. 

Mercury concentrations in feathers of Common Swifts (Apus apus). Legler M, Leonhard W, Koch NJ, Kummerfeld N. 

Mercury (Hg) has been well studied as a bioaccumulated contaminant in aquatic ecosystems worldwide. It has been found to have negative effects on carnivorous and piscivorous bird species with the highest Hg concentrations at the top of the food chain. The objective of this study was to increase our knowledge of mercury exposure in insectivorous birds, especially in a species of the family Apodidae. The Common Swift (Apus apus) that specialises on feeding on aerial plankton molts and winters as a long-distance migrant in Sub-Saharan Africa. In the breeding seasons 2011-2013 the concentrations of Hg in primary flight feathers (P8-P10) in juvenile (n = 35) and adult (n = 25) injured Common Swifts were examined in the area of Hannover, Lower Saxony, Germany using cold vapour atomic absorption spectrometry. As a first reference, it was possible to determine feather Hg levels in adult (Mean ± SD: 0.53 mg/kg wet weight ± 0.37; Xmin-Xmax: 0.04-1.45 mg/kg; n = 25) as well as in juvenile Swifts (Mean ± SD: 0.11 mg/kg wet weight ± 0.06; Xmin-Xmax: 0.04-0.25 mg/kg; n = 35). The significant differences between the ages (p ≤ 0.001) are probably caused by differences in the feather growth, in accumulation of mercury for a longer time in adults as well as particularly in differences between mercury pollution in breeding and wintering ground. The mercury levels detected in swifts in this study are all below the range found by other authors to cause behavioural changes or reduced reproduction (5 mg/kg). PMID: 26281449 [PubMed - in process] 

18. Mov Ecol. 2015 Aug 15;3(1):19. doi: 10.1186/s40462-015-0046-5. eCollection 2015. 

Automated telemetry reveals age specific differences in flight duration and speed are driven by wind conditions in a migratory songbird. 
Mitchell GW(1), Woodworth BK(2), Taylor PD(3), Norris DR(4). Author information: (1)Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1 Canada ; Wildlife Research Division, National Wildlife Research Center, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON K1H 0H3 Canada. (2)Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1 Canada ; Department of Biology, Acadia University, Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6 Canada. (3)Department of Biology, Acadia University, Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6 Canada ; Bird Studies Canada, Port Rowan, ON N0E 1M0 Canada. (4)Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON N1G 2W1 Canada. 

BACKGROUND: Given that winds encountered on migration could theoretically double or half the energy expenditure of aerial migrants, there should be strong selection on behaviour in relation to wind conditions aloft. However, evidence suggests that juvenile songbirds are less choosy about wind conditions at departure relative to adults, potentially increasing energy expenditure during flight. To date, there has yet to be a direct comparison of flight efficiency between free-living adult and juvenile songbirds during migration in relation to wind conditions aloft, likely because of the challenges of following known aged individual songbirds during flight. We used an automated digital telemetry array to compare the flight efficiency of adult and juvenile Savannah sparrows (Passerculus sandwichensis) as they flew nearly 100 km during two successive stages of their fall migration; a departure flight from their breeding grounds out over the ocean and then a migratory flight along a coast. Using a multilevel path modelling framework, we evaluated the effects of age, flight stage, tailwind component, and crosswind component on flight duration and groundspeed. RESULTS: We found that juveniles departed under wind conditions that were less supportive relative to adults and that this resulted in juveniles taking 1.4 times longer to complete the same flight trajectories as adults. We did not find an effect of age on flight duration or groundspeed after controlling for wind conditions aloft, suggesting that both age groups were flying at similar airspeeds. We also found that groundspeeds were 1.7 times faster along the coast than over the ocean given more favourable tailwinds along the coast and because birds appeared to be climbing in altitude over the ocean, diverting some energy from horizontal to vertical movement. CONCLUSIONS: Our results provide the first evidence that adult songbirds have considerably more efficient migratory flights than juveniles, and that this efficiency is driven by the selection of more supportive tailwind conditions aloft. We suggest that the tendency for juveniles to be less choosy about wind conditions at departure relative to adults could be adaptive if the benefits of having a more flexible departure schedule exceed the time and energy savings realized during flight with more supportive winds. PMCID: PMC4537592 PMID: 26279850 [PubMed] 

19. Microb Pathog. 2015 Aug 13. pii: S0882-4010(15)30005-X. doi: 10.1016/j.micpath.2015.08.006. [Epub ahead of print] 

Detection of bacteria and fungi and assessment of the molecular aspects and resistance of Escherichia coli isolated from confiscated passerines intended for reintroduction programs. 
Braconaro P(1), Saidenberg AB(2), Benites NR(2), Zuniga E(2), da Silva AM(3), Sanches TC(3), Zwarg T(3), Brandão PE(2), Melville PA(2). 
Author information: (1)Department of Preventive Veterinary Medicine and Animal Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Zoothecny, University of São Paulo (USP), Av. Prof. Dr. Orlando Marques de Paiva, 87, CEP 05508-270 São Paulo, Brazil. Electronic address: (2)Department of Preventive Veterinary Medicine and Animal Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Zoothecny, University of São Paulo (USP), Av. Prof. Dr. Orlando Marques de Paiva, 87, CEP 05508-270 São Paulo, Brazil. (3)Department of Parks and Green Areas of São Paulo (DEPAVE), Avenida Quarto Centenário, Portão 7A, Parque Ibirapuera CEP 04030-000, Brazil. 

Many native bird species are currently considered rare in Brazil because they have been indiscriminately collected by animal traffickers and commercialized, leading to dwindling numbers in their natural habitats. Confiscated animals are at times destined for reintroduction programs that must ensure these animals do not pose a risk to native populations. Healthy or sick wild passerines may carry a great diversity of microorganisms. Therefore, knowledge of the sanitary status of confiscated animals destined for reintroduction is critical to assess whether these animals act as microorganism carriers and to investigate the epidemiology of transmissible diseases, a crucial aspect for animal and human health preservation. This study examined the occurrence of aerobic and facultative anaerobic bacteria and fungi in cloacal swabs collected from wild confiscated passerines intended for reintroduction programs. In vitro susceptibility tests of the most frequent isolates as well as studies of the molecular aspects of Escherichia coli isolates were also performed. There was microorganism growth in 62.5% of 253 samples. The microorganisms that were most frequently isolated were Staphylococcus spp. (15.0%), Micrococcus spp. (11.5%), E. coli (10.7%) and Klebsiella spp. (10.7%). Fifteen bacteria genera and seven fungi genera were isolated. Multidrug-resistance to antimicrobials was observed in Staphylococcus spp., Micrococcus spp., E. coli and Klebsiella spp. isolates. The high occurrence of Enterobacteria observed is possibly related to the sanitary conditions in which confiscated animals are usually kept. One E. coli sample (out of 27 isolates) was positive for the S-fimbrial adhesion encoding gene (sfa). Considering the low occurrence of genes that encode virulence factors, confiscated passerines may represent a low risk for the potential transmission of EPEC, APEC, UPEC and NMEC isolates to other animals or humans. The potential risk of intra- or inter-specific transmission of multidrug-resistant isolates and the introduction of these microorganisms into the environment must be considered, although there are still therapeutic alternatives for treatment of these animals among the antimicrobials which were tested. The stress and poor hygiene conditions imposed on animals during trafficking may have caused their contamination by multidrug-resistant agents transmitted by humans or by the precarious environment to which they were subjected. Risks related to the dissemination of Salmonella spp., Cryptococcus spp. and Candida spp. are low when reintroduction programs are considered. 
Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. PMID: 26279195 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

20. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2015 Aug 13. pii: S0892-0362(15)30021-0. doi: 10.1016/ [Epub ahead of print] 

In ovo exposure to organophosphorous flame retardants: survival, development, neurochemical, and behavioral changes in white leghorn chickens. 
Bradley M(1), Rutkiewicz J(2), Mittal K(1), Fernie K(3), Basu N(4). 
Author information: (1)Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, McGill University, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC, Canada. (2)Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA; ToxServices, Ann Arbor, MI, USA. (3)Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, McGill University, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC, Canada; Ecotoxicology and Wildlife Health Division, Science and Technology Branch, Environment Canada, Burlington, ON, Canada. (4)Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, McGill University, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC, Canada. Electronic address: 

Organophosphorous flame retardants (OPFRs) are contaminants of emerging concern. There is growing evidence of environmental contamination and exposures to both humans and wildlife. Here, the objective was to increase understanding of the potential neurodevelopmental effects of two relevant OPFRs, TMPP (tri (methylphenyl) phosphate; a non-halogen-containing OPFR) and TDCIPP (tris (1,3-dichloro-isopropyl) phosphate; a halogen-containing OPFR) in an avian embryo/chick model. We injected white leghorn chicken eggs with a range of TMPP (0, 10, 100, and 1,000ng/g) or TDCIPP (0, 10, 100, 1,000, 50,000ng/g) concentrations at incubation day 0 exposing embryos throughout the ~21-day in ovo period. Hatching success was unaffected by TMPP, but TDCIPP-exposed chicks had higher early-incubation mortality in 100 and 50,000ng/g groups. On 7-9-day-old chicks, we assessed behavior via tests concerning righting reflex, angled balance beams, gait patterns, wing flap reflex, and open field movements. Chicks exposed to 100ng/g TDCIPP achieved 40% lower maximum velocity in the open field test than vehicle-exposed controls, while those exposed to 1,000ng/g TDCIPP achieved 20% higher maximum velocity than vehicle-exposed controls. Chicks exposed to 50,000ng/g TDCIPP showed reduced righting response success. There were no dose- or treatment-related differences in angled beam, gait analysis, or wing flap reflex tests. Cerebrum hemispheres from 10-day-old chicks were examined for neurochemistry (acetylcholinesterase [AChE] activity and both nicotinic [nACh] and muscarinic [mACh] acetylcholine receptor levels) and cerebellums were examined for histopathology. TDCIPP-exposed chicks had reduced number of degenerate Purkinje cells (TDCIPP, 1,000ng/g), possibly indicating disruption of neurodevelopment. No neurochemical effects were found in TMPP- or TDCIPP-exposed chicks. In general this study shows some possible neurodevelopmental effects in chicks exposed to TDCIPP when levels greatly exceeded those measured in wild bird eggs and no clear changes in TMPP-exposed chicks. This study builds upon previous in vitro studies as well as work on adult birds showing that toxic responses in avian models can vary among species and OPFRs. 
Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc. PMID: 26277804 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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