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Monday, 18 January 2016

What's new for 'birdRS' in PubMed. January 2016, Week 3

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 Avian Med Surg. 2015 Dec;29(4):326-335. 

Chronic T-cell Lymphocytic Leukemia in a Black Swan ( Cygnus atratus ): Diagnosis, Treatment, and Pathology. 
Sinclair KM, Hawkins MG, Wright L, Chin RP, Owens SD, Guzman DS, Kent MS, BVSc HL. 

An asymptomatic 14-year old, male black swan ( Cygnus atratus ) housed at a zoological institution was presented for routine preshipment examination. Hematologic findings indicated that the bird had a severe lymphocytic leukocytosis, consistent with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Radiographs showed the presence of multiple soft tissue masses within the caudal coelomic cavity; ultrasound showed one mass to be an enlarged spleen, a cystic mass near the gonads, and a mass suspected to be associated with the ventriculus. Results of further antemortem diagnostics, including bone marrow aspiration, fine-needle aspirate cytology of the coelomic masses, and immunohistochemical staining confirmed T-cell leukemia with infiltration of the bone marrow and the spleen. The bird showed partial response to treatment with chlorambucil, lomustine, prednisone, l-asparaginase, and whole-body radiation, with neither evidence of adverse effects nor clinical signs of disease. Although the leukemia showed response, there was no evidence of remission at any point. The swan died 433 days after initial evaluation and initiation of therapy. Necropsy, histopathologic findings, and immunohistochemistry results confirmed extensive infiltration of multiple organs, including the liver, spleen, heart, lungs, and kidneys with neoplastic T-cell lymphocytes. PMID: 26771322 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

2. J Avian Med Surg. 2015 Dec;29(4):313-325. 

Health and Reproductive Assessment of Selected Puerto Rican Parrots ( Amazona vittata ) in Captivity. 
Clubb S, Velez J, Garner MM, Zaias J, Cray C. 

The Puerto Rican parrot ( Amazona vittata ) has become an iconic and high-profile conservation species. The cornerstone of the recovery plan for this critically endangered species is an active captive breeding program, management of the wild population, and a long-term reintroduction program. In 2002, 40 adult Puerto Rican parrots that had not produced viable offspring were selected for reproductive assessment at 2 aviary populations in Puerto Rico (Iguaca and Río Abajo), which are the only sources of parrots for release. The goal was to enhance reproductive potential and produce productive pairings in an attempt to augment the population growth and provide ample individuals for reintroduction. Seven Hispanolian Amazon parrots ( Amazona ventralis ) that were used as surrogate parents for the Puerto Rican parrots were also included in the study. This assessment included physical examination, endoscopic evaluation, hematologic and plasma biochemical profiles, viral screening, and hormonal assays. Results of general physical examination and hematologic and plasma biochemical testing revealed overall good health and condition of this subset of the population of Puerto Rican parrots; no major infectious diseases were found. Endoscopic examination also revealed overall good health and condition, especially of females. The apparent low fertility of male birds warrants further investigation. The findings helped to define causes of reproductive failure in the selected pairs and individual birds. New pairings resulting from the assessment helped to augment reproduction of this critically endangered species. PMID: 26771321 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

3. J Avian Med Surg. 2015 Dec;29(4):275-281. 

Pharmacokinetics of Amitriptyline HCl and Its Metabolites in Healthy African Grey Parrots ( Psittacus erithacus ) and Cockatoos (Cacatua Species). 
Visser M, Ragsdale MM, Boothe DM. 

Amitriptyline, a tricyclic antidepressant, is used clinically to treat feather-destructive behavior in psittacine birds at a recommended dosage of 1-5 mg/kg PO q12-24h, which has been extrapolated from human medicine and based on anecdotal reports. The purpose of this pilot study was to describe the individual and population pharmacokinetic parameters of amitriptyline after a single oral dose at 1.5 mg/kg, 4.5 mg/kg, and 9 mg/kg in healthy African grey parrots ( Psittacus erithacus , n = 3) and cockatoos (Cacatua species, n = 3). Three birds received an initial 1.5 mg/kg oral dose, and blood samples were collected for 24 hours at fixed time intervals. Serum concentrations of amitriptyline and its metabolites were determined by polarized immunofluorescence. After determining the initial parameters and a 14-day washout period, 2 African grey parrots and 1 cockatoo received a single oral dose at 4.5 mg/kg, and 3 cockatoos and 1 African grey parrot received a single oral dose at 9 mg/kg. Concentrations reached the minimum therapeutic range reported in people (60 ng/mL) in 4 of 10 birds (4.5 and 9.0 mg/kg). Concentrations were within the toxic range in 1 African grey parrot (9 mg/kg), with regurgitation, ataxia, and dullness noted. Serum concentrations were nondetectable in 3 birds (1.5 and 4.5 mg/kg) and detectable but below the human therapeutic range in 3 birds (1.5 mg/kg and 9 mg/kg). Drug concentrations were continuing to increase at the end of the study (24 hours) in 1 bird. Elimination half-life varied from 1.6 to 91.2 hours. Population pharmacokinetics indicated significantly varied absorption, and elimination constants varied between species. Although amitriptyline appeared to be tolerated in most birds, disposition varies markedly among and within species, between the 2 genera, and within individual birds. The current recommended dosage of 1-5 mg/kg q12h in psittacine birds appears insufficient to achieve serum concentrations within the human therapeutic range and does not yield predictable concentrations. Results of this study suggest doses of up to 9 mg/kg may be necessary, although that dose may produce adverse events in some birds, and elimination half-life is sufficiently variable that dosing intervals are not predictable. Therapeutic drug monitoring combined with response to therapy is indicated to determine individual therapeutic ranges. PMID: 26771316 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

4. Poult Sci. 2016 Jan 14. pii: pev383. [Epub ahead of print] 

Transfer of bioactive compounds from pasture to meat in organic free-range chickens. 
Dal Bosco A(1), Mugnai C(2), Mattioli S(3), Rosati A(4), Ruggeri S(3), Ranucci D(5), Castellini C(3). Author information: (1)Dept. of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Science, University of Perugia, Borgo 20 Giugno, 74, 06100 Perugia, Italy (2)Dept. Food Science, University of Teramo, Via C. Lerici 1, 64023 Mosciano S.A., Italy. (3)Dept. of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Science, University of Perugia, Borgo 20 Giugno, 74, 06100 Perugia, Italy. (4)Consiglio per la ricerca in agricoltura e l'analisi dell'economia agraria, centro di ricerca per l'olivicoltura e l'industria olearia (CRA - OLI), via Nursina 2, 06049 Spoleto (PG), Italy. (5)Dept. of Veterinary Medicine, Via san Costanzo, 4, 06126, Perugia, Italy. 

The aim of this study was to analyze the transfer of bioactive compounds from the pasture to the body and meat of organic free-range chickens and to verify the effect of these compounds on the oxidative processes of the meat. Starting at 21 d of age, 100 male naked-neck birds were divided into two homogeneous groups: an indoor group (0.12 m(2)/bird) and an outdoor group (0.12 m(2)/bird indoor and 10 m(2)/bird of forage paddock). At slaughter (81 d of age), blood samples were collected, and the carcasses were stored for 24 h at 4°C (20 birds/group). The grass samples had higher values of carotenoids, tocopherols, and flavonoids respect to standard feed (based on dry matter comparison). The polyunsaturated fatty acid ( PUFA: ) content was also greater in grass, especially the n-3 series (so named because its first double bond occurs after the third carbon atom counting from the methyl at the end of the molecule). The antioxidant profile of the grass improved the antioxidant status of the crop and gizzard contents in the outdoor chickens. The higher antioxidant intake resulted in a higher plasma concentration of antioxidants in outdoor birds; thiobarbituric acid reactive substances ( TBARS: ) and the antioxidant capacity of the plasma were also better in the outdoor than the indoor group. The meat of the outdoor birds had higher levels of antioxidants, mainly due to the higher amount of tocopherols and tocotrienols. Despite the higher antioxidant protection in the drumstick of the outdoor group, the TBARs value was greater, probably due to the kinetic activity of birds, the higher percentage of PUFAs, and the peroxidability index. In conclusion, grazing improved the nutritional value of the meat (PUFA n-3 and the ratio between n-6 and n-3 PUFA) with a minor negative effect on the oxidative stability. Suitable strategies to reduce such negative effects (e.g., reduction of kinetic activity in the last days of rearing) should be studied. © 2016 Poultry Science Association Inc. PMID: 26769274 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

5. Aust Vet J. 2015 Dec;93(12):471-5. doi: 10.1111/avj.12389. 

Beak and feather disease virus genotypes in Australian parrots reveal flexible host-switching. 
Sarker S(1,)(2), Forwood JK(3,)(2), Ghorashi SA(1,)(2), Peters A(1,)(2), Raidal SR(4,)(5). Author information: (1)School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. (2)Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation (NSW Department of Primary Industries and Charles Sturt University), Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. (3)School of Biomedical Sciences, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. (4)School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. (5)Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation (NSW Department of Primary Industries and Charles Sturt University), Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. 

OBJECTIVE: To discover beak and feather disease virus (BFDV) genotypes in Australian parrots that might threaten vulnerable and endangered psittacine bird species. METHODS: Phylogenetic analyses of new DNA sequence data from Australian birds including the Rep gene (n = 55) and nine whole genomes, were compared with all available published BFDV genomes to assess host- and geographically-based divergence as well as probable host-switch events. RESULTS: Strong support for flexible host-switching and recombination was detected, indicating active cross-species transmission in various subpopulations. CONCLUSION: The data suggested that all endangered Australian psittacine bird species are equally likely to be infected by BFDV genotypes from any other close or distantly related host reservoir species. © 2015 Australian Veterinary Association. PMID: 26769073 [PubMed - in process] 

6. Aust Vet J. 2015 Dec;93(12):466-70. doi: 10.1111/avj.12388. 

Review of psittacine beak and feather disease and its effect on Australian endangered species. 
Raidal SR(1,)(2), Sarker S(3,)(4), Peters A(3,)(4). Author information: (1)School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. (2)Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation (NSW Department of Primary Industries and Charles Sturt University), Wagga Wagga, NSW, Australia. (3)School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. (4)Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation (NSW Department of Primary Industries and Charles Sturt University), Wagga Wagga, NSW, Australia. 

BACKGROUND: Since it was first described in the early 1980s, psittacine beak and feather disease (PBFD) has become recognised as the dominant viral pathogen of psittacine birds in Australia. Our aim was to evaluate and review the effect of PBFD and its position as a key threatening process to Australian psittacine bird species. We review the origin/evolutionary pathways and potential threat of PBFD to endangered psittacine bird populations and captive-breeding flocks. CONCLUSIONS: The most recent beak and feather disease virus (BFDV) phylogenetic analyses indicate that all endangered Australian psittacine bird species are susceptible to, and equally likely to be infected by, BFDV genotypes from a range of host psittacine species. Management of the disease in captive-breeding programs has relied on testing and culling, which has proven costly. The risk of PBFD should be considered very carefully by management teams contemplating the establishment of captive-breeding flocks for endangered species. Alternative disease prevention tools, including vaccination, which are increasingly being used in wildlife health, should be considered more seriously for managing and preventing PBFD in captive flocks of critically endangered species. © 2015 Australian Veterinary Association. PMID: 26769072 [PubMed - in process] 

7. Zoo Biol. 2015 Nov;34(6):538-46. doi: 10.1002/zoo.21241. Epub 2015 Aug 25. 

Creation and validation of a novel body condition scoring method for the magellanic penguin (Spheniscus magellanicus) in the zoo setting.  
Clements J(1), Sanchez JN(2). Author information: (1)San Francisco Zoological Society, Registered Veterinary Technician, San Francisco, California. (2)University of California Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine, Davis, California. 

This research aims to validate a novel, visual body scoring system created for the Magellanic penguin (Spheniscus magellanicus) suitable for the zoo practitioner. Magellanics go through marked seasonal fluctuations in body mass gains and losses. A standardized multi-variable visual body condition guide may provide a more sensitive and objective assessment tool compared to the previously used single variable method. Accurate body condition scores paired with seasonal weight variation measurements give veterinary and keeper staff a clearer understanding of an individual's nutritional status. San Francisco Zoo staff previously used a nine-point body condition scale based on the classic bird standard of a single point of keel palpation with the bird restrained in hand, with no standard measure of reference assigned to each scoring category. We created a novel, visual body condition scoring system that does not require restraint to assesses subcutaneous fat and muscle at seven body landmarks using illustrations and descriptive terms. The scores range from one, the least robust or under-conditioned, to five, the most robust, or over-conditioned. The ratio of body weight to wing length was used as a "gold standard" index of body condition and compared to both the novel multi-variable and previously used single-variable body condition scores. The novel multi-variable scale showed improved agreement with weight:wing ratio compared to the single-variable scale, demonstrating greater accuracy, and reliability when a trained assessor uses the multi-variable body condition scoring system. Zoo staff may use this tool to manage both the colony and the individual to assist in seasonally appropriate Magellanic penguin nutrition assessment. Zoo Biol. 34:538-546, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID: 26768691 [PubMed - in process] 

8. J Anim Ecol. 2016 Jan;85(1):1-4. doi: 10.1111/1365-2656.12450. 

Flying with the winds: differential migration strategies in relation to winds in moth and songbirds. 
Åkesson S(1). Author information: (1)Centre for Animal Movement Research, Department of Biology, Lund University, Ecology Building, SE-22362, Lund, Sweden. 

The gamma Y moth selects to migrate in stronger winds compared to songbirds, enabling fast transport to distant breeding sites, but a lower precision in orientation as the moth allows itself to be drifted by the winds. Photo: Ian Woiwod. In Focus: Chapman, J.R., Nilsson, C., Lim, K.S., Bäckman, J., Reynolds, D.R. & Alerstam, T. (2015) Adaptive strategies in nocturnally migrating insects and songbirds: contrasting responses to winds. Journal of Animal Ecology, In press Insects and songbirds regularly migrate long distances across continents and seas. During these nocturnal migrations, they are exposed to a fluid medium, the air, in which they transport themselves by flight at similar speeds as the winds may carry them. It is crucial for an animal to select the most favourable flight conditions relative to winds to minimize the distance flown on a given amount of fuel and to avoid hazardous situations. Chapman et al. (2015a) showed contrasting strategies in how moths initiate migration predominantly under tailwind conditions, allowing themselves to drift to a larger extent and gain ground speed as compared to nocturnal songbird migrants. The songbirds use more variable flight strategies in relation to winds, where they sometimes allow themselves to drift, and at other occasions compensate for wind drift. This study shows how insects and birds have differentially adapted to migration in relation to winds, which is strongly dependent on their own flight capability, with higher flexibility enabling fine-tuned responses to keep a time programme and reach a goal in songbirds compared to in insects. © 2015 The Author. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2015 British Ecological Society. PMID: 26768333 [PubMed - in process] 

9. Chemosphere. 2016 Jan 12;147:218-229. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2015.12.099. [Epub ahead of print] 

Characterization and distribution of metal and nonmetal elements in the Alberta oil sands region of Canada. 
Huang R(1), McPhedran KN(2), Yang L(3), Gamal El-Din M(1). Author information: (1)Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2W2, Canada. (2)Department of Civil and Geological Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, S7N 5A9, Canada. Electronic address: (3)Division of Analytical and Environmental Toxicology, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2G3, Canada. 

This review covers the characterization and distribution of metals and nonmetals in the Alberta oil sands region (AOSR) of Canada. The development of the oil sands industry has resulted in the release of organic, metal and nonmetal contaminants via air and water to the AOSR. For air, studies have found that atmospheric deposition of metals in the AOSR decreased exponentially with distance from the industrial emission sources. For water, toxic metal concentrations often exceeded safe levels leading to the potential for negative impacts to the receiving aquatic environments. Interestingly, although atmospheric deposition, surface waters, fish tissues, and aquatic bird eggs exhibited increasing level of metals in the AOSR, reported results from river sediments showed no increases over time. This could be attributed to physical and/or chemical dynamics of the river system to transport metals to downstream. The monitoring of the airborne emissions of relevant nonmetals (nitrogen and sulphur species) was also considered over the AOSR. These species were found to be increasing along with the oil sands developments with the resultant depositions contributing to nitrogen and sulphur accumulations resulting in ecosystem acidification and eutrophication impacts. In addition to direct monitoring of metals/nonmetals, tracing of air emissions using isotopes was also discussed. Further investigation and characterization of metals/nonmetals emissions in the AOSR are needed to determine their impacts to the ecosystem and to assess the need for further treatment measures to limit their continued output into the receiving environments. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. PMID: 26766359 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

10. Biol Lett. 2016 Jan;12(1). pii: 20150513. doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2015.0513. 

Female in-nest chatter song increases predation. 
Kleindorfer S(1), Evans C(2), Mahr K(3). Author information: (1)School of Biological Sciences, Flinders University, GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, Australia (2)School of Biological Sciences, Flinders University, GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, Australia. (3)Konrad Lorenz Institute for Ethology, Department of Integrative Biology and Evolution, University of Veterinary Medicine, Savoyenstrasse 1a, Vienna 1160, Austria. 

Female song is an ancestral trait in songbirds, yet extant females generally sing less than males. Here, we examine sex differences in the predation cost of singing behaviour. The superb fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus) is a Southern Hemisphere songbird; males and females provision the brood and produce solo song year-round. Both sexes had higher song rate during the fertile period and lower song rate during incubation and chick feeding. Females were more likely than males to sing close to or inside the nest. For this reason, female but not male song rate predicted egg and nestling predation. This study identifies a high fitness cost of song when a parent bird attends offspring inside a nest and explains gender differences in singing when there are gender differences in parental care. © 2016 The Author(s). PMID: 26763214 [PubMed - in process] 

11. Evolution. 2016 Jan 13. doi: 10.1111/evo.12853. [Epub ahead of print] 

Lifespan and reproductive cost explain interspecific variation in the optimal onset of reproduction. 
Mourocq E(1), Bize P(2), Bouwhuis S(3,)(4), Bradley R(5), Charmantier A(6), Cruz C(7), Drobniak SM(1), Espie RH(8), Herényi M(9,)(10), Hötker H(11), Krüger O(12), Marzluff J(13), Møller AP(14), Nakagawa S(15,)(16), Phillips RA(17), Radford AN(18), Roulin A(19), Török J(9), Valencia J(20), Pol MV(21,)(22), Warkentin IG(23), Winney IS(24), Wood AG(17), Griesser M(1). Author information: (1)University of Zurich, Anthropological Institute & Museum, Winterthurerstrasse 190, CH-8057, Zürich, Switzerland. (2)University of Aberdeen, Institute of Biological & Environmental Sciences, Zoology Building, Tillydrone Avenue, Aberdeen AB24 2TZ, United Kingdom. (3)Institute of Avian Research "Vogelwarte Helgoland", An der Vogelwarte 21, D-26386, Wilhelmshaven, Germany. (4)Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Edward Grey Institute, Tinbergen Building, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3PS, United Kingdom. (5)Point Blue Conservation Science, 3820 Cypress Drive #11, Petaluma 94954, California, United States of America. (6)Centre d'Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive, CNRS UMR 5175, 1919, route de Mende, F-34293, Montpellier, France. (7)Biology & Ethology Research Group, University of Extremadura, Avenida de Elvas, E-06071 Badajoz, Spain. (8)Technical Resource Branch, Saskatchewan Environment, 5th Floor, 3211 Albert Street, Regina, Saskatchewan S4S 5W6, Canada. (9)Department of Systematic Zoology & Ecology, Behavioral Ecology Group, Eötvös Loránd University, Pázmány Péter sétány 1/c., H-1117 Budapest, Hungary. (10)Department of Zoology and Animal Ecology, Szent István University, Páter Károly utca 1., H-2100 Gödöllő, Hungary. (11)Michael-Otto-Institute within NABU, Goosstroot 1, D-24861Bergenhusen, Germany. (12)Department of Animal Behavior, Bielefeld University, Morgenbreede 45, D-33615 Bielefeld, Germany. (13)College of The Environment, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, University of Washington, 4000 15th Avenue NE, Seattle WA 98195-2100, United States of America. (14)Laboratoire d'Ecologie, Systématique & Evolution, Université Paris-Sud, CNRS UMR 8079, 362 Rue du Doyen André Guinier, F-91405 Orsay, France. (15)Department of Zoology, University of Otago, 340 Great King Street, PO Box 56, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand. (16)Evolution & Ecology Research Centre, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia. (17)British Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0ET, United Kingdom. (18)School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, 24 Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TH, United Kingdom. (19)Department of Ecology & Evolution, University of Lausanne, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland. (20)Department of Zoology, Cátedra Recursos Cinegéticos, Campus de Rabanales, University of Córdoba, E-14071 Córdoba, Spain. (21)Australian National University, Evolution, Ecology & Genetics, Acton ACT 2601, Australia. (22)Department of Animal Ecology, Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW), Droevendaalsesteeg 10, NL-6708 PB Wageningen, the Netherlands. (23)Environmental Science Program, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Corner Brook, NL A2H 6P9, Canada. (24)Department of Animal & Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN, United Kingdom. 

Fitness can be profoundly influenced by the age at first reproduction (AFR), but to date the AFR-fitness relationship only has been investigated intraspecifically. Here we investigated the relationship between AFR and average lifetime reproductive success (LRS) across 34 bird species. We assessed differences in the deviation of the Optimal AFR (i.e., the species-specific AFR associated with the highest LRS) from the age at sexual maturity, considering potential effects of life-history as well as social and ecological factors. Most individuals adopted the species-specific Optimal AFR and both the mean and Optimal AFR of species correlated positively with lifespan. Interspecific deviations of the Optimal AFR were associated with indices reflecting a change in LRS or survival as a function of AFR: a delayed AFR was beneficial in species where early AFR was associated with a decrease in subsequent survival or reproductive output. Overall, our results suggest that a delayed onset of reproduction beyond maturity is an optimal strategy explained by a long lifespan and costs of early reproduction. By providing the first empirical confirmations of key predictions of life-history theory across species, this study contributes to a better understanding of life-history evolution. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. PMID: 26763090 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

12. PLoS One. 2016 Jan 13;11(1):e0146958. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0146958. eCollection 2016. 

Effect of Climate Change on Mediterranean Winter Ranges of Two Migratory Passerines. 
Tellería JL(1), Fernández-López J(1,)(2), Fandos G(1). Author information: (1)Departamento de Zoología y Antropología Física, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, Spain. (2)Real Jardín Botánico de Madrid, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Madrid, Spain. 

We studied the effect of climate change on the distribution of two insectivorous passerines (the meadow pipit Anthus pratensis and the chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita) in wintering grounds of the Western Mediterranean basin. In this region, precipitation and temperature can affect the distribution of these birds through direct (thermoregulation costs) or indirect effects (primary productivity). Thus, it can be postulated that projected climate changes in the region will affect the extent and suitability of their wintering grounds. We studied pipit and chiffchaff abundance in several hundred localities along a belt crossing Spain and Morocco and assessed the effects of climate and other geographical and habitat predictors on bird distribution. Multivariate analyses reported a positive effect of temperature on the present distribution of the two species, with an additional effect of precipitation on the meadow pipit. These climate variables were used with Maxent to model the occurrence probabilities of species using ring recoveries as presence data. Abundance and occupancy of the two species in the study localities adjusted to the distribution models, with more birds in sectors of high climate suitability. After validation, these models were used to forecast the distribution of climate suitability according to climate projections for 2050-2070 (temperature increase and precipitation reduction). Results show an expansion of climatically suitable sectors into the highlands by the effect of warming on the two species, and a retreat of the meadow pipit from southern sectors related to rain reduction. The predicted patterns show a mean increase in climate suitability for the two species due to the warming of the large highland expanses typical of the western Mediterranean. PMID: 26761791 [PubMed - in process] 

13. PLoS One. 2016 Jan 13;11(1):e0144994. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0144994. eCollection 2016. 

Birds of Two Oceans? Trans-Andean and Divergent Migration of Black Skimmers (Rynchops niger cinerascens) from the Peruvian Amazon. 
Davenport LC(1,)(2), Goodenough KS(3), Haugaasen T(4). Author information: (1)Florida Museum of Natural History, Department of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, United States of America. (2)Center for Tropical Conservation, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, United States of America. (3)Oklahoma Biological Survey, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, United States of America. (4)Department of Ecology, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås, Norway. 

Seasonal flooding compels some birds that breed in aquatic habitats in Amazonia to undertake annual migrations, yet we know little about how the complex landscape of the Amazon region is used seasonally by these species. The possibility of trans-Andes migration for Amazonian breeding birds has largely been discounted given the high geographic barrier posed by the Andean Cordillera and the desert habitat along much of the Pacific Coast. Here we demonstrate a trans-Andes route for Black Skimmers (Rynchops niger cinerascens) breeding on the Manu River (in the lowlands of Manu National Park, Perú), as well as divergent movement patterns both regionally and across the continent. Of eight skimmers tracked with satellite telemetry, three provided data on their outbound migrations, with two crossing the high Peruvian Andes to the Pacific. A third traveled over 1800 km to the southeast before transmissions ended in eastern Paraguay. One of the two trans-Andean migrants demonstrated a full round-trip migration back to its tagging location after traveling down the Pacific Coast from latitude 9° South to latitude 37° S, spending the austral summer in the Gulf of Arauco, Chile. This is the first documentation of a trans-Andes migration observed for any bird breeding in lowland Amazonia. To our knowledge, this research also documents the first example of a tropical-breeding waterbird migrating out of the tropics to spend the non-breeding season in the temperate summer, this being the reverse pattern with respect to seasonality for austral migrants in general. PMID: 26760301 [PubMed - in process] 

14. Front Zool. 2016 Jan 12;13:1. doi: 10.1186/s12983-016-0133-5. eCollection 2016. 

The relationship of telomere length to baseline corticosterone levels in nestlings of an altricial passerine bird in natural populations. 
Quirici V(1), Guerrero CJ(2), Krause JS(3), Wingfield JC(3), Vásquez RA(4). Author information: (1)Departamento de Ecología y Biodiversidad, Facultad de Ecologíam y Recursos Naturales, Universidad Andres Bello, República 440, Santiago, Chile. (2)Escuela de Medicina Veterinaria, Talca, Facultad de Recursos Naturales y Medicina Veterinaria, Universidad Santo Tomás, Av. Carlos Schorr 255, Talca, Maule Chile. (3)Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior, University of California, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616 USA. (4)Instituto de Ecología y Biodiversidad and Departamento de Ciencias Ecológicas, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Chile, Las Palmeras 3425, Santiago, Chile. 

BACKGROUND: Environmental stressors increase the secretion of glucocorticoids that in turn can shorten telomeres via oxidative damage. Modification of telomere length, as a result of adversity faced early in life, can modify an individual's phenotype. Studies in captivity have suggested a relationship between glucocorticoids and telomere length in developing individuals, however less is known about that relationship in natural populations. METHODS: In order to evaluate the effect of early environmental stressors on telomere length in natural populations, we compared baseline corticosterone (CORT) levels and telomere length in nestlings of the same age. We collected blood samples for hormone assay and telomere determination from two geographically distinct populations of the Thorn-tailed Rayadito (Aphrastura spinicauda) that differed in brood size; nestlings body mass and primary productivity. Within each population we used path analysis to evaluate the relationship between brood size, body mass, baseline CORT and telomere length. RESULTS: Within each distinct population, path coefficients showed a positive relationship between brood size and baseline CORT and a strong and negative correlation between baseline CORT and telomere length. In general, nestlings that presented higher baseline CORT levels tended to present shorter telomeres. When comparing populations it was the low latitude population that presented higher levels of baseline CORT and shorter telomere length. CONCLUSIONS: Taken together our results reveal the importance of the condition experienced early in life in affecting telomere length, and the relevance of integrative studies carried out in natural conditions. PMCID: PMC4710010 PMID: 26759601 [PubMed] 

15. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2016 Jan 13. [Epub ahead of print] 

The gastrointestinal tract microbiota of the Japanese quail, Coturnix japonica. 
Wilkinson N(1,)(2), Hughes RJ(2,)(3,)(4), Aspden WJ(1), Chapman J(1,)(2), Moore RJ(2,)(5,)(6), Stanley D(7,)(8). Author information: (1)Institute of Future Farming, Central Queensland University, Bruce Highway, Building 6 Room 2.33, Rockhampton, QLD, 4702, Australia. (2)Poultry Cooperative Research Centre, University of New England Armidale, Armidale, NSW, 2351, Australia. (3)South Australian Research and Development Institute, Pig and Poultry Production Institute, Roseworthy, South Australia, 5371, Australia. (4)School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences Roseworthy, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, 5371, Australia. (5)School of Applied Sciences and Health Innovations Research Institute (HIRi), RMIT University, Bundoora, VIC, 3083, Australia. (6)Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Clayton, VIC, 3800, Australia. (7)Institute of Future Farming, Central Queensland University, Bruce Highway, Building 6 Room 2.33, Rockhampton, QLD, 4702, Australia. (8)Poultry Cooperative Research Centre, University of New England Armidale, Armidale, NSW, 2351, Australia. 

Microbiota in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) plays an essential role in the health and well-being of the host. With the exception of chickens, this area has been poorly studied within birds. The avian GIT harbours unique microbial communities. Birds require rapid energy bursts to enable energy-intensive flying. The passage time of feed through the avian GIT is only 2-3.5 h, and thus requires the presence of microbiota that is extremely efficient in energy extraction. This investigation has used high-throughput 16S rRNA gene sequencing to explore the GIT microbiota of the flighted bird, the Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica). We are reporting, for the first time, the diversity of bacterial phylotypes inhabiting all major sections of the quail GIT including mouth, esophagus, crop, proventriculus, gizzard, duodenum, ileum, cecum, large intestine and feces. Nine phyla of bacteria were found in the quail GIT; however, their distribution varied significantly between GIT sections. Cecal microbiota was the most highly differentiated from all the other communities and showed highest richness at an OTU level but lowest richness at all other taxonomic levels being comprised of only 15 of total 57 families in the quail GIT. Differences were observed in the presence and absence of specific phylotypes between sexes in most sections. PMID: 26758298 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

16. Mol Ecol. 2016 Jan 12. doi: 10.1111/mec.13530. [Epub ahead of print] 

The Evolution of Highly Variable Immunity Genes Across a Passerine Bird Radiation. 
O'Connor EA(1), Strandh M(1), Hasselquist D(1), Nilsson JÅ(1), Westerdahl H(1). Author information: (1)Molecular Ecology and Evolution Lab, Lund University, Ecology building, 223 62, Lund, Sweden. 

In order to survive, individuals must be able to recognise and eliminate pathogens. The genes of the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) play an essential role in this process in vertebrates as their diversity affects the repertoire of pathogens that can be recognised by the immune system. Emerging evidence suggests that birds within the parvorder Passerida possess an exceptionally high number of MHC genes. However, this has yet to be directly investigated using a consistent framework, and the question of how this MHC diversity has evolved has not been addressed. We used next generation sequencing to investigate how MHC class I gene copy number and sequence diversity varies across the Passerida radiation using twelve species chosen to represent the phylogenetic range of this group. Additionally, we performed phylogenetic analyses on this data to identify, for the first time, the evolutionary model that best describes how MHC class I gene diversity has evolved within Passerida. We found evidence of multiple MHC class I genes in every family tested, with an extremely broad range in gene copy number across Passerida. There was a strong phylogenetic signal in MHC gene copy number and diversity, and these traits appear to have evolved through a process of Brownian Motion in the species studied, i.e. following the pattern of genetic drift or fluctuating selection, as opposed to towards a single optimal value or through evolutionary 'bursts'. By characterising MHC class I gene diversity across Passerida in a systematic framework, this study provides a first step towards understanding this huge variation. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. PMID: 26757248 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

17. J Med Entomol. 2016 Jan 11. pii: tjv243. [Epub ahead of print] 

Diversity and Prevalence of Ectoparasites on Backyard Chicken Flocks in California. 
Murillo AC(1), Mullens BA(2). Author information: (1)Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (; and (2)Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (; 

Peridomestic ("backyard") chicken flocks are gaining popularity in the developed world (e.g., North America or Europe), yet little is known regarding prevalence or severity of their ectoparasites. Therefore, five birds on each of 20 properties throughout southern California were surveyed in summer for on-host (permanent) and off-host dwelling (temporary) ectoparasites. Only four premises (20%) were entirely free of ectoparasites. In declining order of prevalence (% of premises), permanent ectoparasites included six chicken louse species: Menacanthus stramineus (Nitzsch) (50%), Goniocotes gallinae (De Geer) (35%), Lipeurus caponis (L.) (20%), Menopon gallinae (L.) (15%), Menacanthus cornutus (Schömmer) (5%), and Cuclotogaster heterographus (Nitzsch) (5%). Only one flea species, Echidnophaga gallinacea (Westwood) (20%), was found. Three parasitic mite species were observed: Ornithonyssus sylviarum (Canestrini & Fanzago) (15%), Knemidocoptes mutans (Robin & Lanquetin) (10%), and Dermanyssus gallinae (De Geer) (5%). Many infestations consisted of a few to a dozen individuals per bird, but M. stramineus, G. gallinae, M. cornutus, and E. gallinacea were abundant (dozens to hundreds of individuals) on some birds, and damage by K. mutans was severe on two premises. Off-host dwelling ectoparasites were rare (D. gallinae) or absent (Cimex lectularius L., Argasidae). Parasite diversity in peridomestic flocks greatly exceeds that is routinely observed on commercial chicken flocks and highlights a need for increased biosecurity and development of ectoparasite control options for homeowners. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: PMID: 26753948 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

18. Environ Toxicol Chem. 2016 Jan 11. doi: 10.1002/etc.3360. [Epub ahead of print] 

Temporal and latitudinal trends of p,p'-DDE in eggs and carcass of North American birds from 1980-2005. 
Mora MA(1), Durgin B(2), Hudson LB(1), Jones E(2). Author information: (1)Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas. (2)Department of Statistics, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas. 

The use of DDT [1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis (p-chlorophenyl) ethane] in agriculture in the United States and Canada was prohibited in the early 1970's; however, it continued to be used restrictively in Mexico until 2000. Forty years later, p,p'-DDE [(1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis(p-chlorophenyl) ethylene)], continues to be detected in eggs and bird carcasses in North America. DDE has been associated with reproductive failure of several avian species, primarily through eggshell thinning. To assess the temporal and latitudinal distribution of p,p'-DDE in North America, we examined the DDE concentrations reported in bird tissues in the scientific literature published between 1980 and 2009. Overall, the majority of supported models suggested that DDE concentrations in birds were greatest in the upper mid-latitudes (38°- 48°) than in other parts of North America. However, spatial trends of DDE seemed to be influenced by regions with great amounts of data, such as the Great Lakes area. Concentrations of p,p'-DDE in eggs averaged 2.5, 3.2, and 29.5µg/g ww in 1980 and decreased to 1.64, 0.87, and 1.01 µg/g ww by the mid-2000s for the central, eastern, and western North America regions, respectively. The results indicate that over time, all DDE residues observed in birds have decreased significantly in North America. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. PMID: 26753749 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] 

19. Mov Ecol. 2016 Jan 7;4:1. doi: 10.1186/s40462-015-0066-1. eCollection 2016. 

An assessment of spatio-temporal relationships between nocturnal bird migration traffic rates and diurnal bird stopover density. 
Horton KG(1), Shriver WG(2), Buler JJ(2). Author information: (1)Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology, University of Delaware, 531 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19716 USA ; Department of Biology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK USA ; Oklahoma Biological Survey, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK USA ; Advanced Radar Research Center, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK USA. (2)Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology, University of Delaware, 531 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19716 USA. 

BACKGROUND: Daily magnitudes and fluxes of landbird migration are often measured via nocturnal traffic rates aloft or diurnal densities within terrestrial habitats during stopover. However, these measures are not consistently correlated and at times reveal opposing trends. For this reason we sought to determine how comparison methods (daily magnitude or daily flux), nocturnal monitoring tools (weather surveillance radar, WSR; thermal imaging, TI), and temporal scale (preceding or following diurnal sampling) influenced correlation strength from stopover densities estimated by daily transect counts. We quantified nocturnal traffic rates at two temporal scales; averaged across the entire night and within individual decile periods of the night, and at two spatial scales; within 1 km of airspace surrounding the site via WSR and directly overhead within the narrow beam of a TI. RESULTS: Overall, the magnitude of daily bird density during stopover was positively related to the magnitude of broad-scale radar traffic rates of migrants on preceding and following nights during both the spring and fall. These relationships were strongest on the following night, and particularly from measures early in the night. Only during the spring on the following nights did we find positive correlations between the daily flux of transect counts and migration traffic rates (both WSR and TI). This indicates that our site likely had a more consistent daily turnover of migrants compared to the fall. The lack of general correlations between seasonal trends or daily flux in fine-scale TI traffic rates and stopover densities across or within nights was unexpected and likely due to poor sampling of traffic rates due to the camera's narrow beam. CONCLUSIONS: The order (preceding or following day) and metric of comparisons (magnitude or flux), as well as the tool (WSR or TI) used for monitoring nocturnal migration traffic can have dramatic impacts when compared with ground-based estimates of migrant density. WSR provided measures of the magnitude and daily flux in nocturnal migration traffic rates that related to daily stopover counts of migrants during spring and fall. Relationships among migrating bird flux measures are more complex than simple measures of magnitude of migration. Care should be given to address these complexities when comparing data among methods. PMCID: PMC4705634 PMID: 26753094 [PubMed]

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