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Sample records for feral cat populations

  1. The Population Origins and Expansion of Feral Cats in Australia.

    PubMed

    Spencer, Peter B S; Yurchenko, Andrey A; David, Victor A; Scott, Rachael; Koepfli, Klaus-Peter; Driscoll, Carlos; O'Brien, Stephen J; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn

    2016-03-01

    The historical literature suggests that in Australia, the domestic cat (Felis catus) had a European origin [~200 years before present (ybp)], but it is unclear if cats arrived from across the Asian land bridge contemporaneously with the dingo (4000 ybp), or perhaps immigrated ~40000 ybp in association with Aboriginal settlement from Asia. The origin of cats in Australia is important because the continent has a complex and ancient faunal assemblage that is dominated by endemic rodents and marsupials and lacks the large placental carnivores found on other large continents. Cats are now ubiquitous across the entire Australian continent and have been implicit in the range contraction or extinction of its small to medium sized (<3.5kg) mammals. We analyzed the population structure of 830 cats using 15 short tandem repeat (STR) genomic markers. Their origin appears to come exclusively from European founders. Feral cats in continental Australia exhibit high genetic diversity in comparison with the low diversity found in populations of feral cats living on islands. The genetic structure is consistent with a rapid westerly expansion from eastern Australia and a limited expansion in coastal Western Australia. Australian cats show modest if any population structure and a close genetic alignment with European feral cats as compared to cats from Asia, the Christmas and Cocos (Keeling) Islands (Indian Ocean), and European wildcats (F. silvestris silvestris). PMID:26647063

  2. A review of feral cat control.

    PubMed

    Robertson, Sheilah A

    2008-08-01

    Animal overpopulation including feral cats is an important global problem. There are many stakeholders involved in the feral cat debate over 'what to do about the problem', including those who consider them a nuisance, the public at risk from zoonotic disease, people who are concerned about the welfare of feral cats, those concerned with wildlife impacts, and the cats themselves. How best to control this population is controversial and has ranged from culling, relocation, and more recently 'trap neuter return' (TNR) methods. Data support the success of TNR in reducing cat populations, but to have a large impact it will have to be adopted on a far greater scale than it is currently practised. Non-surgical contraception is a realistic future goal. Because the feral cat problem was created by humans, concerted educational efforts on responsible pet ownership and the intrinsic value of animals is an integral part of a solution. PMID:17913531

  3. Intestinal helminths of feral cat populations from urban and suburban districts of Qatar.

    PubMed

    Abu-Madi, Marawan A; Behnke, Jerzy M; Prabhaker, K S; Al-Ibrahim, Roda; Lewis, John W

    2010-03-25

    A survey of the helminths of 658 adult cats from feral urban and suburban populations in Qatar was conducted across all months in 2006 and 2007. Six species of helminths were identified, comprising two cestodes (Taenia taeniaeformis [73.6%] and Diplopylidium acanthotetra [47.1%]) and four nematodes (Ancylostoma tubaeforme [14.7%], Physaloptera praeputialis [5.2%], Toxocara cati [0.8%] and Toxascaris leonina [0.2%]), and 83% of cats were infected with at least one of these. The average number of species harboured was 1.4 and the average worm burden was 55.8 worms/cat. The vast majority of worms (97.6%) were cestodes, nematodes being relatively rare. Prevalence and abundance of infections were analyzed, taking into consideration four factors: year (2006 and 2007), site (urban and suburban), season (winter and summer) and sex of the host. Analyses revealed marked year effects, female host bias in some species and interactions involving combination of factors, but especially sex and season of the year. The results indicate that whilst the majority of adult feral cats in Qatar carry helminth infections, infections are variable between years and subject to annual changes that may reflect climatic and other environmental changes in the rapidly developing city of Doha and its suburban surroundings. Only two species have the potential to infect humans and both were rare among the sampled cats (A. tubaeforme and T. cati). PMID:20031329

  4. Population characteristics of feral cats admitted to seven trap-neuter-return programs in the United States.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Jennifer L; Levy, Julie K

    2006-08-01

    Internationally, large populations of feral cats constitute an important and controversial issue due to their impact on cat overpopulation, animal welfare, public health, and the environment, and to disagreement about what are the best methods for their control. Trap-neuter-return (TNR) programs are an increasingly popular alternative to mass euthanasia. The objective of this study was to determine the population characteristics of feral cats admitted to large-scale TNR programs from geographically diverse locations in the United States. Data from 103,643 feral cats admitted to TNR programs from 1993 to 2004 were evaluated. All groups reported more intact females (53.4%) than intact males (44.3%); only 2.3% of the cats were found to be previously sterilized. Overall, 15.9% of female cats were pregnant at the time of surgery. Pregnancy was highly seasonal and peaked between March and April for all of the groups. The average prenatal litter size was 4.1+/-0.1 fetuses per litter. Cryptorchidism was observed in 1.3% of male cats admitted for sterilization. A total of 0.4% of cats was euthanased because of the presence of debilitating conditions, and 0.4% died during the TNR clinics. Remarkably similar populations of cats with comparable seasonal variability were seen at each program, despite their wide geographical distribution. These results suggest that it is feasible to safely sterilize large numbers of feral cats and that the experiences of existing programs are a consistent source of information upon which to model new TNR programs. PMID:16603400

  5. Prevalence of ectoparasites in a population of feral cats from north central Florida during the summer.

    PubMed

    Akucewich, Lisa H; Philman, Kendra; Clark, Abby; Gillespie, Jeromey; Kunkle, Gail; Nicklin, Constance F; Greiner, Ellis C

    2002-10-16

    Ectoparasites are a common and important cause of skin disorders in cats. Ectoparasites are capable of disease transmission and can cause life-threatening anemia in young or debilitated animals. The objective of this study was to determine the potential feline ectoparasites in domestic cats by using a cohort of feral cats from north central Florida that have not received veterinary care and have no known exposure to insecticide application. A total of 200 feral cats were randomly selected for this study. Four monthly sessions were scheduled for feral cat ectoparasite examination and sample collection. Five minutes flea combing revealed that 185/200 (92.5%) of the cats were infested with fleas. The cat flea, Ctenocephalides felis was the most common flea infesting 92.5% feral cats (mean = 13.6; standard deviation +/- 16.4 fleas per cat). Pulex simulans was identified on 9/200 (4.5%) (mean = 1 +/- 0.50 fleas per cat). Echidnophaga gallinacea was found on 11/200 (5.5%) of cats (mean = 14.8 +/- 9.63 fleas per cat). There was a significant difference (P = 0.0005) in the average number of C. felis counted per cat between months. Mean counts in June (18.3 +/- 2.4) and July (16.6 +/- 2.1) were significantly (P < 0.01) higher than in August (8.4 +/- 2.5) and September (7.7 +/- 2.0). Only 15/200 cats had skin disease. Flea infestation may potentially be the underlying cause in 10/15. Otoscopic examination of both ears revealed mite movement and black ceruminous exudate typically indicative of the presence of Otodectes cynotis in 45/200 (22.5%) cats. Examination of a swab specimen from both ear canals of all cats revealed O. cynotis in 74/200 (37%) cats. Of 74 cats positive on ear swab, 8 (10.8%) showed a normal ear canal appearance (no or mild ceruminous exudate) in both ears upon otoscopic examination. A total of nine ticks were recovered from five cats. The number and species of ticks recovered were: one adult female Rhipicephalus sanguineus; one adult female Amblyomma

  6. Infectious disease prevalence in a feral cat population on Prince Edward Island, Canada.

    PubMed

    Stojanovic, Vladimir; Foley, Peter

    2011-09-01

    Ninety-six feral cats from Prince Edward Island were used to determine the prevalence of selected infectious agents. The prevalence rates were 5.2% for feline immunodeficiency virus, 3.1% for feline leukemia virus, 3.1% for Mycoplasma haemofelis, 8.4% for Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum, 2.1% for Bartonella spp. and 29.8% for exposure to Toxoplasma gondii. Oocysts of T. gondii were detected in 1.3% of the fecal samples that were collected. Gender and retroviral status of the cats were significantly correlated with hemoplasma infections. Use of a flea comb showed that 9.6% of the cats had fleas; however, flea infestation was not associated with any of the infectious agents. PMID:22379197

  7. Using population genetic tools to develop a control strategy for feral cats (Felis catus) in Hawai'i

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hansen, H.; Hess, S.C.; Cole, D.; Banko, P.C.

    2007-01-01

    Population genetics can provide information about the demographics and dynamics of invasive species that is beneficial for developing effective control strategies. We studied the population genetics of feral cats on Hawai'i Island by microsatellite analysis to evaluate genetic diversity and population structure, assess gene flow and connectivity among three populations, identify potential source populations, characterise population dynamics, and evaluate sex-biased dispersal. High genetic diversity, low structure, and high number of migrants per generation supported high gene flow that was not limited spatially. Migration rates revealed that most migration occurred out of West Mauna Kea. Effective population size estimates indicated increasing cat populations despite control efforts. Despite high gene flow, relatedness estimates declined significantly with increased geographic distance and Bayesian assignment tests revealed the presence of three population clusters. Genetic structure and relatedness estimates indicated male-biased dispersal, primarily from Mauna Kea, suggesting that this population should be targeted for control. However, recolonisation seems likely, given the great dispersal ability that may not be inhibited by barriers such as lava flows. Genetic monitoring will be necessary to assess the effectiveness of future control efforts. Management of other invasive species may benefit by employing these population genetic tools. ?? CSIRO 2007.

  8. Desires and management preferences of stakeholders regarding feral cats in the Hawaiian islands.

    PubMed

    Lohr, Cheryl A; Lepczyk, Christopher A

    2014-04-01

    Feral cats are abundant in many parts of the world and a source of conservation conflict. Our goal was to clarify the beliefs and desires held by stakeholders regarding feral cat abundance and management. We measured people's desired abundance of feral cats in the Hawaiian Islands and identified an order of preference for 7 feral cat management techniques. In 2011 we disseminated a survey to 5407 Hawaii residents. Approximately 46% of preidentified stakeholders and 20% of random residents responded to the survey (1510 surveys returned). Results from the potential for conflict index revealed a high level of consensus (86.9% of respondents) that feral cat abundance should be decreased. The 3 most common explanatory variables for respondents' stated desires were enjoyment from seeing feral cats (84%), intrinsic value of feral cats (12%), and threat to native fauna (73%). The frequency with which respondents saw cats and change in the perceived abundance of cats also affected respondent's desired abundance of cats; 41.3% of respondents stated that they saw feral cats daily and 44.7% stated that the cat population had increased in recent years. Other potential environmental impacts of feral cats had little affect on desired abundance. The majority of respondents (78%) supported removing feral cats from the natural environment permanently. Consensus convergence models with data from 1388 respondents who completed the relevant questions showed live capture and lethal injection was the most preferred technique and trap-neuter-release was the least preferred technique for managing feral cats. However, the acceptability of each technique varied among stakeholders. Our results suggest that the majority of Hawaii's residents would like to see effective management that reduces the abundance of feral or free-roaming cats. PMID:24372971

  9. Utilization of matrix population models to assess a 3-year single treatment nonsurgical contraception program versus surgical sterilization in feral cat populations.

    PubMed

    Budke, Christine M; Slater, Margaret R

    2009-01-01

    This study constructed matrix population models to explore feral cat population growth for a hypothetical population (a) in the absence of intervention; (b) with a traditional surgical sterilization-based trap, neuter, and return program; and (c) with a single treatment 3-year nonsurgical contraception program. Model outcomes indicated that cessation of population growth would require surgical sterilization for greater than 51% of adult and 51% of juvenile (<1 year) intact female cats annually, assuming an approximate 3-year mean life span. After the population stabilizes, this would equate to sterilizing approximately 14% of the total female population per year or having approximately 71% of the total female and 81% of the adult female population sterilized at all times. In the absence of juvenile sterilization, 91% of adult intact females would need to be sterilized annually to halt population growth. In comparison, with a 3-year nonsurgical contraception program, an annual contraception rate of 60% of female juvenile and adult intact cats would be required to halt population growth, assuming that treated cats were retrapped at the same rate after 3 years. PMID:20183481

  10. Reduction of feral cat (Felis catus Linnaeus 1758) colony size following hysterectomy of adult female cats.

    PubMed

    Mendes-de-Almeida, Flavya; Remy, Gabriella L; Gershony, Liza C; Rodrigues, Daniela P; Chame, Marcia; Labarthe, Norma V

    2011-06-01

    The size of urban cat colonies is limited only by the availability of food and shelter; therefore, their population growth challenges all known population control programs. To test a new population control method, a free-roaming feral cat colony at the Zoological Park in the city of Rio de Janeiro was studied, beginning in 2001. The novel method consisted of performing a hysterectomy on all captured female cats over 6 months of age. To estimate the size of the colony and compare population from year to year, a method of capture-mark-release-recapture was used. The aim was to capture as many individuals as possible, including cats of all ages and gender to estimate numbers of cats in all population categories. Results indicated that the feral cat population remained constant from 2001 to 2004. From 2004 to 2008, the hysterectomy program and population estimates were performed every other year (2006 and 2008). The population was estimated to be 40 cats in 2004, 26 in 2006, and 17 cats in 2008. Although pathogens tend to infect more individuals as the population grows older and maintains natural behavior, these results show that free-roaming feral cat colonies could have their population controlled by a biannual program that focuses on hysterectomy of sexually active female cats. PMID:21440475

  11. Dermatophilus congolensis in a feral cat.

    PubMed

    Barger, Anne M; Weedon, G Robert; Maddox, Carol W; Galloway, Kimberly A

    2014-10-01

    A young adult feral cat presented to the Champaign County Humane Society with a subcutaneous mass near the stifle. The mass was aspirated. Chains of paired cocci organisms were identified, consistent with Dermatophilus congolensis. The identity of these organisms was confirmed by culture and polymerase chain reaction. PMID:24496323

  12. A trap, neuter, and release program for feral cats on Prince Edward Island

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, Karen L.; Keizer, Karen; Golding, Christine

    2002-01-01

    A new program to address the feral cat population on Prince Edward Island was undertaken during the spring and summer of 2001. Feral cats from specific geographic areas were trapped, sedated, and tested for feline leukemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus. Healthy cats were neutered, dewormed, vaccinated, tattooed, and released to their area of origin. A total of 185 cats and kittens were trapped and tested during a 14-week period; 158 cats and kittens as young as 6 weeks of age were neutered and released. Twenty-three adult cats were positive for feline leukemia virus, feline immunodeficiency virus, or both, and were euthanized. PMID:12240526

  13. A serological study of Dirofilaria immitis in feral cats in Grenada, West Indies.

    PubMed

    Fernandez, C; Chikweto, A; Mofya, S; Lanum, L; Flynn, P; Burnett, J P; Doherty, D; Sharma, R N

    2010-12-01

    A study to determine the seroprevalence of Dirofilaria immitis was carried out in feral cats in Grenada. Of the 137 feral cats tested for circulating antibodies (IgG; lateral-flow immunoassay) and circulating antigens (Ag; enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay), 8% (95% confidence interval (CI) 3.5-12.5%) were antibody positive and 5.1% (95% CI 1.4-8.8%) were antigen positive. No significant difference between cats aged>1 to 4 years and cats less than 1 year of age was found (P>0.05, χ²). There was also no significant difference (P>0.05, χ²) between male and female cats. Dirofilaria immitis prevalence is relatively high in the feral cat population of Grenada. Evidence of D. immitis infection in feral cats coupled with the endemic nature of heartworm disease in dogs in Grenada leads us to suggest the introduction of heartworm prophylaxis in cats. To the authors' knowledge, this serological evidence of heartworm infection in feral cats in Grenada is the first report from the Caribbean region. PMID:20144260

  14. Linking genetic diversity and temporal fluctuations in population abundance of the introduced feral cat (Felis silvestris catus) on the Kerguelen archipelago.

    PubMed

    Devillard, S; Santin-Janin, H; Say, L; Pontier, D

    2011-12-01

    Linking temporal variations of genetic diversity, including allelic richness and heterozygosity, and spatio-temporal fluctuations in population abundance has emerged as an important tool for understanding demographic and evolutionary processes in natural populations. This so-called genetic monitoring was conducted across 12 consecutive years (1996-2007) at three sites for the feral cat, introduced onto the Kerguelen archipelago fifty years ago. Temporal changes in allelic richness and heterozygosity at 18 microsatellite DNA loci were compared with temporal changes in the adult population abundance index, obtained by typical demographic monitoring. No association was found at the island spatial scale, but we observed an association between genetic diversity and adult population indices from year to year within each study site. More particularly, the magnitude of successive increases or decreases in the adult population abundance index appeared to be the major factor linking the trajectories of genetic diversity and adult population abundance indices. Natal dispersal and/or local recruitment, both facilitated by high juvenile survival when the adult population size is small, is proposed as the major demographic processes contributing to such an observed pattern. Finally, we suggested avoiding the use of the harmonic mean as an estimator of long-term population size to study the relationships between demographic fluctuations and heterozygosity in populations characterized by strong multiannual density fluctuations. PMID:22098605

  15. Managing feral cats on a university's campuses: how many are there and is sterilization having an effect?

    PubMed

    Jones, Amanda L; Downs, Colleen T

    2011-01-01

    Worldwide domestic and feral cat (Felis catus) numbers have increased. Concerns regarding high populations of feral cats in urban areas include wildlife predation, public nuisance, and disease. This study aimed to estimate the size of the feral cat population on 5 campuses of the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, to determine whether sterilization has an effect and to make management recommendations. The study used both the total count and mark-recapture methods to estimate the feral cat population on each campus. The study chose a noninvasive method of taking photographs to "mark" individuals and record those who were sterilized. The study estimated a total of 186 cats on all campuses and density at 161 cats km(-2). There was a negative relationship between sterilization and numbers. Sites with higher sterilization showed a lower proportion of younger cats. At the average sterilization of 55%, the population, according to predictions, would remain stable at fecundity, survival, and immigration rates reported by cat caretakers. However, caretakers underestimated cat abundance by 7 ± 37 SD%. Caretakers' feral cat sterilization and feeding programs appear to provide a service to the university community. Key management recommendations were to increase sterilization to 90% to reduce the population over the long term and to raise funds to support the costs incurred by voluntary cat caretakers. PMID:21932945

  16. Videographic evidence of endangered species depredation by feral cat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Judge, Seth; Lippert, Jill S.; Misajon, Kathleen; Hu, Darcy; Hess, Steven C.

    2012-01-01

    Feral cats (Felis cafus) have long been implicated as nest predators of endangered 'Ua'u (Hawaiian Petrel; Pterodroma sandwichensis) on Hawaii Island, but until recently, visual confirmation has been limited by available technology. 'Ua'u nest out of view, deep inside small cavities, on alpine lava flows. During the breeding seasons of 2007 and 2008, we monitored known burrows within Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. Digital infrared video cameras assisted in determining the breeding behaviour and nesting success at the most isolated of burrows. With 7 cameras, we collected a total of 819 videos and 89 still photographs of adult and nestling 'Ua'u at 14 burrows. Videos also confirmed the presence of rats (Rattus spp.) at 2 burrows, 'Ōmao (Myadestes obscurus) at 8 burrows, and feral cats at 6 burrows. A sequence of videos showed a feral cat taking a downy 'Ua'u chick from its burrow, representing the first direct evidence of 'Ua'u depredation by feral cat in Hawai'i. This technique provides greater understanding of feral cat behaviour in 'Ua'u colonies, which may assist in the development of more targeted management strategies to reduce nest predation on endangered insular bird species.

  17. Feral Cat Globetrotters: genetic traces of historical human-mediated dispersal.

    PubMed

    Koch, Katrin; Algar, Dave; Schwenk, Klaus

    2016-08-01

    Endemic species on islands are highly susceptible to local extinction, in particular if they are exposed to invasive species. Invasive predators, such as feral cats, have been introduced to islands around the world, causing major losses in local biodiversity. In order to control and manage invasive species successfully, information about source populations and level of gene flow is essential. Here, we investigate the origin of feral cats of Hawaiian and Australian islands to verify their European ancestry and a potential pattern of isolation by distance. We analyzed the genetic structure and diversity of feral cats from eleven islands as well as samples from Malaysia and Europe using mitochondrial DNA (ND5 and ND6 regions) and microsatellite DNA data. Our results suggest an overall European origin of Hawaiian cats with no pattern of isolation by distance between Australian, Malaysian, and Hawaiian populations. Instead, we found low levels of genetic differentiation between samples from Tasman Island, Lana'i, Kaho'olawe, Cocos (Keeling) Island, and Asia. As these populations are separated by up to 10,000 kilometers, we assume an extensive passive dispersal event along global maritime trade routes in the beginning of the 19th century, connecting Australian, Asian, and Hawaiian islands. Thus, islands populations, which are characterized by low levels of current gene flow, represent valuable sources of information on historical, human-mediated global dispersal patterns of feral cats. PMID:27551385

  18. Differences between vocalization evoked by social stimuli in feral cats and house cats.

    PubMed

    Yeon, Seong C; Kim, Young K; Park, Se J; Lee, Scott S; Lee, Seung Y; Suh, Euy H; Houpt, Katherine A; Chang, Hong H; Lee, Hee C; Yang, Byung G; Lee, Hyo J

    2011-06-01

    To investigate how socialization can affect the types and characteristics of vocalization produced by cats, feral cats (n=25) and house cats (n=13) were used as subjects, allowing a comparison between cats socialized to people and non-socialized cats. To record vocalization and assess the cats' responses to behavioural stimuli, five test situations were used: approach by a familiar caretaker, by a threatening stranger, by a large doll, by a stranger with a dog and by a stranger with a cat. Feral cats showed extremely aggressive and defensive behaviour in most test situations, and produced higher call rates than those of house cats in the test situations, which could be attributed to less socialization to other animals and to more sensitivity to fearful situations. Differences were observed in the acoustic parameters of feral cats in comparison to those of house cats. The feral cat produced significantly higher frequency in fundamental frequency, peak frequency, 1st quartile frequency, 3rd quartile frequency of growls and hisses in agonistic test situations. In contrast to the growls and hisses, in meow, all acoustic parameters like fundamental frequency, first formant, peak frequency, 1st quartile frequency, and 3rd quartile frequency of house cats were of significantly higher frequency than those of feral cats. Also, house cats produced calls of significantly shorter in duration than feral cats in agonistic test situations. These results support the conclusion that a lack of socialization may affect usage of types of vocalizations, and the vocal characteristics, so that the proper socialization of cat may be essential to be a suitable companion house cat. PMID:21443933

  19. Prevalence of feline immunodeficiency virus infection in domesticated and feral cats in eastern Australia.

    PubMed

    Norris, Jacqueline M; Bell, Erin T; Hales, Louise; Toribio, Jenny-Ann L M L; White, Joanna D; Wigney, Denise I; Baral, Randolph M; Malik, Richard

    2007-08-01

    Serum samples from 340 pet cats presented to three inner city clinics in Sydney Australia, 68 feral cats from two separate colonies in Sydney, and 329 cattery-confined pedigree and domestic cats in eastern Australia, were collected over a 2-year period and tested for antibodies directed against feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) using immunomigration (Agen FIV Rapid Immunomigration test) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay methods (Snap Combo feline leukaemia virus antigen/FIV antibody test kit, IDEXX Laboratories). Western blot analysis was performed on samples in which there was discrepancy between the results. Information regarding breed, age, gender, housing arrangement and health status were recorded for all pet and cattery-confined cats, while the estimated age and current physical condition were recorded for feral cats. The FIV prevalence in the two feral cat populations was 21% and 25%. The majority of FIV-positive cats were male (60-80%). The FIV prevalence in cattery-confined cats was nil. The prevalence of FIV in the pet cat sample population was 8% (27/340) with almost equal prevalence in 'healthy' (13/170) and 'systemically unwell' (14/170) cats. The age of FIV-positive pet cats ranged from 3 to 19 years; all FIV-positive cats were domestic shorthairs with outside access. The median age of FIV-positive pet cats (11 years) was significantly greater than the median age of FIV-negative pet cats (7.5 years: P<0.05). The prevalence of FIV infection in male pet cats (21/172; 12%) was three times that in female pet cats (6/168; 4%; P<0.05). With over 80% of this pet cat population given outside access and continued FIV infection present in the feral population, this study highlights the need to develop rapid, accurate and cost-effective diagnostic methods that are not subject to false positives created by concurrent vaccination against FIV. This is especially important in re-homing stray cats within animal shelters and monitoring the efficacy of the new

  20. The effects of feral cats on insular wildlife: the Club-Med syndrome

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, Steve C.; Danner, Raymond M.

    2012-01-01

    Domestic cats have been introduced to many of the world‘s islands where they have been particularly devastating to insular wildlife which, in most cases, evolved in the absence of terrestrial predatory mammals and feline diseases. We review the effects of predation, feline diseases, and the life history characteristics of feral cats and their prey that have contributed to the extirpation and extinction of many insular vertebrate species. The protozoan Toxoplasma gondii is a persistent land-based zoonotic pathogen hosted by cats that is known to cause mortality in several insular bird species. It also enters marine environments in cat feces where it can cause the mortality of marine mammals. Feral cats remain widespread on islands throughout the world and are frequently subsidized in colonies which caretakers often assert have little negative effect on native wildlife. However, population genetics, home range, and movement studies all suggest that there are no locations on smaller islands where these cats cannot penetrate within two generations. While the details of past vertebrate extinctions were rarely documented during contemporary time, a strong line of evidence is emerging that the removal of feral cats from islands can rapidly facilitate the recolonization of extirpated species, particularly seabirds. Islands offer unique, mostly self-contained ecosystems in which to conduct controlled studies of the effects of feral cats on wildlife, having implications for continental systems. The response of terrestrial wildlife such as passerine birds, small mammals, and herptiles still needs more thorough long-term monitoring and documentation after the removal of feral cats.

  1. Extraterritorial hunting expeditions to intense fire scars by feral cats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGregor, Hugh W.; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E.; Johnson, Christopher N.

    2016-03-01

    Feral cats are normally territorial in Australia’s tropical savannahs, and hunt intensively with home-ranges only two to three kilometres across. Here we report that they also undertake expeditions of up to 12.5 km from their home ranges to hunt for short periods over recently burned areas. Cats are especially likely to travel to areas burned at high intensity, probably in response to vulnerability of prey soon after such fires. The movements of journeying cats are highly directed to specific destinations. We argue that the effect of this behaviour is to increase the aggregate impact of cats on vulnerable prey. This has profound implications for conservation, considering the ubiquity of feral cats and global trends of intensified fire regimes.

  2. Extraterritorial hunting expeditions to intense fire scars by feral cats

    PubMed Central

    McGregor, Hugh W.; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E.; Johnson, Christopher N.

    2016-01-01

    Feral cats are normally territorial in Australia’s tropical savannahs, and hunt intensively with home-ranges only two to three kilometres across. Here we report that they also undertake expeditions of up to 12.5 km from their home ranges to hunt for short periods over recently burned areas. Cats are especially likely to travel to areas burned at high intensity, probably in response to vulnerability of prey soon after such fires. The movements of journeying cats are highly directed to specific destinations. We argue that the effect of this behaviour is to increase the aggregate impact of cats on vulnerable prey. This has profound implications for conservation, considering the ubiquity of feral cats and global trends of intensified fire regimes. PMID:26932268

  3. Extraterritorial hunting expeditions to intense fire scars by feral cats.

    PubMed

    McGregor, Hugh W; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E; Johnson, Christopher N

    2016-01-01

    Feral cats are normally territorial in Australia's tropical savannahs, and hunt intensively with home-ranges only two to three kilometres across. Here we report that they also undertake expeditions of up to 12.5 km from their home ranges to hunt for short periods over recently burned areas. Cats are especially likely to travel to areas burned at high intensity, probably in response to vulnerability of prey soon after such fires. The movements of journeying cats are highly directed to specific destinations. We argue that the effect of this behaviour is to increase the aggregate impact of cats on vulnerable prey. This has profound implications for conservation, considering the ubiquity of feral cats and global trends of intensified fire regimes. PMID:26932268

  4. Feral Cats: Too Long a Threat to Hawaiian Wildlife

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, Steven C.; Banko, Paul C.

    2006-01-01

    BACKGROUND Domestic cats (Felis catus) were first brought to Hawai`i aboard sailing ships of European explorers and colonists. The job of these predators was to control mice and rats on the ships during the long voyages. As in other places, cats were taken in and adopted by the families of Hawai`i and soon became household pets known as popoki. But cats have always been very well equipped to live and hunt on their own. On tropical archipelagos like the Hawaiian Islands where no other predatory mammals of comparable size existed, abundant and naive prey were particularly easy game, and cats soon thrived in the wild. Although the details of when cats first came to live in the wild remain little known, adventurers, writers, and naturalists of the day recorded some important observations. Feral cats were observed in remote wilderness around K?ilauea volcano on Hawai`i Island as early as 1840 by explorer William Brackenridge. Mark Twain was so impressed by the great abundance of cats when he visited Honolulu in 1866 that he reported his observations in the Sacramento Union newspaper, which were later reprinted in his book Roughing It: I saw... tame cats, wild cats, singed cats, individual cats, groups of cats, platoons of cats, companies of cats, regiments of cats, armies of cats, multitudes of cats, millions of cats...

  5. Prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in feral cats in Seoul, Korea.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sang-Eun; Kim, Neung-Hee; Chae, Hee-Sun; Cho, Shin-Hyeong; Nam, Ho-Woo; Lee, Won-Ja; Kim, Sun-Heung; Lee, Jung-Hark

    2011-02-01

    The present study assessed the prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in feral cat populations in Seoul using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR). A total of 456 feral cats from 17 wards in Seoul was surveyed. The overall prevalence of T. gondii infection was 15.8% (69/456) by ELISA and 17.5% (80/456) by PCR; by gender, 17% (44/259) by ELISA and 16.2% (42/259) by PCR in males and 14.3% (28/196) by ELISA and 19.4% (38/196) by PCR in females. On a baseline of the Han River, prevalence was 15.1% (29/192) by ELISA and 15.6% (30/192) by PCR in the upper region and 16.4% (43/264) by ELISA and 18.9% (50/264) by PCR in the lower area. This suggested that toxoplasmosis is widespread throughout Seoul's feral cat population and it is critical that the city institute policies for the control of the feral cat population to reduce the risk of toxoplasmosis transmission to animals, including humans. PMID:21348626

  6. Evaluation of medetomidine, ketamine and buprenorphine for neutering feral cats.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Kelly A; Robertson, Sheilah A; Levy, Julie K; Isaza, Natalie M

    2011-12-01

    A combination of medetomidine (M, 100 μg/kg), ketamine (K, 10 mg/kg) and buprenorphine (B, 10 μg/kg), administered by intramuscular injection, was evaluated for spaying and castration (neutering) of feral cats (n = 101). Eleven animals (11%) required supplemental anesthesia (isoflurane by mask) to maintain an adequate plane of surgical anesthesia. Atipamezole (A, 125 μg/kg) was administered subcutaneously at the completion of surgery. All cats recovered from surgery and were released the following day. A hemoglobin saturation (SpO(2)) value of < 95% was recorded at least once during anesthesia in all cats. This MKB combination can be used in a feral cat sterilization clinic, but isoflurane supplementation may be necessary. Further research is indicated to determine the clinical significance of the low SpO(2) values associated with this anesthetic regimen. PMID:21885310

  7. Serological survey of vector-borne zoonotic pathogens in pet cats and cats from animal shelters and feral colonies.

    PubMed

    Case, Joseph Brad; Chomel, Bruno; Nicholson, William; Foley, Janet E

    2006-04-01

    Although cats and their arthropod parasites can sometimes be important sources of zoonotic diseases in humans, the extent of exposure among various cat populations to many potential zoonotic agents remains incompletely described. In this study, 170 domestic cats living in private homes, feral cat colonies, and animal shelters from California and Wisconsin were evaluated by serology to determine the levels of exposure to a group of zoonotic vector-borne pathogens. Serological positive test results were observed in 17.2% of cats for Rickettsia rickettsii, 14.9% for R akari, 4.9% for R typhi, 11.1% for R felis, and 14.7% for Bartonella henselae. Although vector-borne disease exposure has been documented previously in cats, the evaluation of multiple pathogens and diverse cat populations simultaneously performed here contributes to our understanding of feline exposure to these zoonotic pathogens. PMID:16434226

  8. Survival of feral cats, Felis catus (Carnivora: Felidae), on Mauna Kea, Hawai'i, based on tooth cementum lines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Danner, Raymond M.; Farmer, Chris; Hess, Steven C.; Stephens, Robert M.; Banko, Paul C.

    2010-01-01

    Feral cats (Felis catus) have spread throughout anthropogenic and insular environments of the world. They now threaten many species of native wildlife with chronic depredation. Knowledge of feral cat population dynamics is necessary to understand their ecological effects and to develop effective control strategies. However, there are few studies worldwide regarding annual or lifetime survival rates in remote systems, and none on Pacific islands. We constructed the age distribution and estimated survival of feral cats in a remote area of Hawai'i Island using cementum lines present in lower canine teeth. Our data suggest annual cementum line formation. A log-linear model estimated annual survival ≥ 1 yr of age to be 0.647. Relatively high survival coupled with high reproductive output allows individual cats to affect native wildlife for many years and cat populations to rebound quickly after control efforts.

  9. Strength of evidence for the effects of feral cats on insular wildlife: The Club Med Syndrome Part II

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, Steve

    2014-01-01

    Various types of evidence have been promulgated as proof for the effects of feral cats on wildlife, typically including numerous studies on predation inferred from diet, mortality attributed to pathogens, and photographic or videographic documentation. The strength of these types of evidence is often short of conclusive. For example, studies of predation inferred from diet provide weak evidence for two reasons: 1) they cannot differentiate depredation from scavenging by feral cats, and 2) they cannot address population-level effects on wildlife because it is rarely understood if mortality acts in compensatory or additive manner. Likewise, pathogens may cause mortality of individuals, but population-level effects of pathogens are rarely known. Photographic or videographic documentation provides direct ‘smoking gun’ evidence that may be useful for positive identification of depredation by cats, or identification of prey designated as threatened or endangered species. However, the most direct and compelling evidence comes from examples where feral cats have been entirely removed from islands. In many cases, several species of seabirds as well as other wildlife have recovered after the complete removal of cats. Where possible, the experimental removal of cats would provide the most conclusive proof of effects on wildlife populations. In other cases where cat removal is not feasible, modeling based on predation rates and life history parameters of species may be the only means of assessing population-level effects on wildlife. Understanding population-level effects of feral cats on wildlife will ultimately be necessary to resolve long-standing wildlife management issues.

  10. A cross-sectional study of Tritrichomonas foetus infection in feral and shelter cats in Prince Edward Island, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Raab, Oriana; Greenwood, Spencer; Vanderstichel, Raphael; Gelens, Hans

    2016-01-01

    A cross-sectional study examined the occurrence of Tritrichomonas foetus, and other intestinal parasites, in feral and shelter cats in Prince Edward Island (PEI). Fecal samples were collected from 100 feral cats, 100 cats from the PEI Humane Society, and 5 cats from a private residence. The occurrence of T. foetus, based on fecal culture, was 0% in feral and shelter cats. A single positive sample was obtained from an owned Abyssinian cat that was imported to PEI. Intestinal parasites were identified via fecal flotation in 76% of feral cats and 39% of cats from the humane society. Feral cats had a higher incidence of Toxocara cati than cats from the humane society (P < 0.001), conversely, shelter cats had a higher incidence of Cystoisospora spp. (P < 0.001). These results suggest that while T. foetus is not of importance in feral and shelter cats in PEI, imported cats could serve as reservoirs. PMID:26933262

  11. A cross-sectional study of Tritrichomonas foetus infection in feral and shelter cats in Prince Edward Island, Canada.

    PubMed

    Raab, Oriana; Greenwood, Spencer; Vanderstichel, Raphael; Gelens, Hans

    2016-03-01

    A cross-sectional study examined the occurrence of Tritrichomonas foetus, and other intestinal parasites, in feral and shelter cats in Prince Edward Island (PEI). Fecal samples were collected from 100 feral cats, 100 cats from the PEI Humane Society, and 5 cats from a private residence. The occurrence of T. foetus, based on fecal culture, was 0% in feral and shelter cats. A single positive sample was obtained from an owned Abyssinian cat that was imported to PEI. Intestinal parasites were identified via fecal flotation in 76% of feral cats and 39% of cats from the humane society. Feral cats had a higher incidence of Toxocara cati than cats from the humane society (P < 0.001), conversely, shelter cats had a higher incidence of Cystoisospora spp. (P < 0.001). These results suggest that while T. foetus is not of importance in feral and shelter cats in PEI, imported cats could serve as reservoirs. PMID:26933262

  12. Home range and diet of feral cats in Hawaii forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smucker, T.D.; Lindsey, G.D.; Mosher, S.M.

    2000-01-01

    Feral cat Felis catus home range in a Hawaiian montane wet forest and their diet in three habitats - montane wet forest, subalpine dry forest, and lowland dry forest - were determined to provide baseline ecological data and to assess potential impacts to native terrestrial fauna. Seven cats (three males and four females) were captured in 624 trap nights. Mean weight of adult cats was 2.85 ?? 0.27 (SE) Kg for males and 1.87 ?? 0.03 kg for females. Mean diumal home range using the adaptive kernel method was 5.74 ?? 2.73 km2 for three males and 2.23 ?? 0.44 km2 for two females. Daytime locations were always within the montane wet forest with the borders on one or more sides of the home ranges of all cats defined by open grassland pastures. Rodents comprised the majority of the cat diets in all three habitats, with the frequencies of occurence between 0.88 and 0.91. Bird remains were a regular component of the diet of cats, with montane wet forest having the highest frequency of occurence (0.68), followed by subalpine dry forest (0.53), and lowland dry forest (0.21).

  13. Landscape Management of Fire and Grazing Regimes Alters the Fine-Scale Habitat Utilisation by Feral Cats

    PubMed Central

    McGregor, Hugh W.; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E.; Johnson, Christopher N.

    2014-01-01

    Intensification of fires and grazing by large herbivores has caused population declines in small vertebrates in many ecosystems worldwide. Impacts are rarely direct, and usually appear driven via indirect pathways, such as changes to predator-prey dynamics. Fire events and grazing may improve habitat and/or hunting success for the predators of small mammals, however, such impacts have not been documented. To test for such an interaction, we investigated fine-scale habitat selection by feral cats in relation to fire, grazing and small-mammal abundance. Our study was conducted in north-western Australia, where small mammal populations are sensitive to changes in fire and grazing management. We deployed GPS collars on 32 cats in landscapes with contrasting fire and grazing treatments. Fine-scale habitat selection was determined using discrete choice modelling of cat movements. We found that cats selected areas with open grass cover, including heavily-grazed areas. They strongly selected for areas recently burnt by intense fires, but only in habitats that typically support high abundance of small mammals. Intense fires and grazing by introduced herbivores created conditions that are favoured by cats, probably because their hunting success is improved. This mechanism could explain why, in northern Australia, impacts of feral cats on small mammals might have increased. Our results suggest the impact of feral cats could be reduced in most ecosystems by maximising grass cover, minimising the incidence of intense fires, and reducing grazing by large herbivores. PMID:25329902

  14. Critical assessment of claims regarding management of feral cats by trap-neuter-return.

    PubMed

    Longcore, Travis; Rich, Catherine; Sullivan, Lauren M

    2009-08-01

    Many jurisdictions have adopted programs to manage feral cats by trap-neuter-return (TNR), in which cats are trapped and sterilized, then returned to the environment to be fed and cared for by volunteer caretakers. Most conservation biologists probably do not realize the extent and growth of this practice and that the goal of some leading TNR advocates is that cats ultimately be recognized and treated as "protected wildlife." We compared the arguments put forth in support of TNR by many feral cat advocates with the scientific literature. Advocates promoting TNR often claim that feral cats harm wildlife only on islands and not on continents; fill a natural or realized niche; do not contribute to the decline of native species; and are insignificant vectors or reservoirs of disease. Advocates also frequently make claims about the effectiveness of TNR, including claims that colonies of feral cats are eventually eliminated by TNR and that managed colonies resist invasion by other cats. The scientific literature contradicts each of these claims. TNR of feral cats is primarily viewed and regulated as an animal welfare issue, but it should be seen as an environmental issue, and decisions to implement it should receive formal environmental assessment. Conservation scientists have a role to play by conducting additional research on the effects of feral cats on wildlife and by communicating sound scientific information about this problem to policy makers. PMID:19245489

  15. Devil declines and catastrophic cascades: is mesopredator release of feral cats inhibiting recovery of the eastern quoll?

    PubMed

    Fancourt, Bronwyn A; Hawkins, Clare E; Cameron, Elissa Z; Jones, Menna E; Nicol, Stewart C

    2015-01-01

    The eastern quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus) is a medium-sized Australian marsupial carnivore that has recently undergone a rapid and severe population decline over the 10 years to 2009, with no sign of recovery. This decline has been linked to a period of unfavourable weather, but subsequent improved weather conditions have not been matched by quoll recovery. A recent study suggested another mechanism: that declines in Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) populations, due to the spread of the fatal Devil Facial Tumour Disease, have released feral cats (Felis catus) from competitive suppression, with eastern quoll declines linked to a subsequent increase in cat sightings. Yet current evidence of intraguild suppression among devils, cats and quolls is scant and equivocal. We therefore assessed the influences of top-down effects on abundance and activity patterns among devils, feral cats and eastern quolls. Between 2011 and 2013, we monitored four carnivore populations using longitudinal trapping and camera surveys, and performed camera surveys at 12 additional sites throughout the eastern quoll's range. We did not find evidence of a negative relationship between devil and cat abundance, nor of higher cat abundance in areas where devil populations had declined the longest. Cats did not appear to avoid devils spatially; however, there was evidence of temporal separation of cat and devil activity, with reduced separation and increasing nocturnal activity observed in areas where devils had declined the longest. Cats and quolls used the same areas, and there was no evidence that cat and quoll abundances were negatively related. Temporal overlap in observed cat and quoll activity was higher in summer than in winter, but this seasonal difference was unrelated to devil declines. We suggest that cats did not cause the recent quoll decline, but that predation of juvenile quolls by cats could be inhibiting low density quoll populations from recovering their former abundance

  16. Feline immunodeficiency virus testing in stray, feral, and client-owned cats of Ottawa.

    PubMed

    Little, Susan E

    2005-10-01

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) seroprevalence is evaluated in 3 groups of cats. Seventy-four unowned urban strays were tested, as well as 20 cats from a small feral cat colony, and 152 client-owned cats. Of the 246 cats tested, 161 (65%) were male and 85 (35%) were female. Seroprevalence for FIV was 23% in the urban strays, 5% in the feral cat colony, and 5.9% in the client-owned cats. Ten cats (4%) were also positive for Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) antigen, including 2 cats coinfected with FeLV and FIV. Seroprevalence for FIV in cats from Ottawa is similar to that found in other nonrandom studies of cats in North America. PMID:16454381

  17. Diet of feral cats in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, S.C.; Hansen, H.; Nelson, D.; Swift, R.; Banko, P.C.

    2007-01-01

    We documented the diet of feral cats by analysing the contents of 42 digestive tracts from Kilauea and Mauna Loa in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. Small mammals, invertebrates, and birds were the most common prey types consumed by feral cats. Birds occurred in 27.8-29.2% of digestive tracts. The total number of bird, small mammal, and invertebrate prey differed between Kilauea and Mauna Loa. On Mauna Loa, significantly more (89%) feral cats consumed small mammals, primarily rodents, than on Kilauea Volcano (50%). Mice (Mus musculus) were the major component of the feral cat diet on Mauna Loa, whereas Orthoptera were the major component of the diet on Kilauea. We recovered a mandible set, feathers, and bones of an endangered Hawaiian Petrel (Pterodroma sandwichensis) from a digestive tract from Mauna Loa. This specimen represents the first well-documented endangered seabird to be recovered from the digestive tract of a feral cat in Hawai'i and suggests that feral cats prey on this species.

  18. Survey of Helicobacter infection in domestic and feral cats in Korea.

    PubMed

    Ghil, Heh-Myung; Yoo, Jong-Hyeon; Jung, Woo-Sung; Chung, Tae-Ho; Youn, Hwa-Young; Hwang, Cheol-Yong

    2009-03-01

    Discovery of Helicobacter (H.) pylori has led to a fundamental change in our understanding of gastric diseases in humans. Previous studies have found various Helicobacter spp. in dogs and cats, and pets have been questioned as a zoonotic carrier. The present study surveyed the Helicobacter infections and investigated the presence of H. felis and H. pylori infections in domestic and feral cats in Korea. Sixty-four domestic cats and 101 feral cats were selected from an animal shelter. Saliva and feces were evaluated by Helicobacter genus-specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Genus-specific PCR positive samples were further evaluated for H. felis and H. pylori using specific primer pairs. Thirty-six of 64 (56.3%) samples from domestic cats and 92 of 101 (91.1%) samples from feral cats were PCR positive; the positive rate of feces samples was higher than that of saliva samples in both groups. H. felis and H. pylori species-specific PCR was uniformly negative. The prevalence of Helicobacter spp. in feral cats was approximately two-fold higher than that of domestic cats. The fecal-oral route may be more a common transmission route not only between cats but also in humans. PMID:19255526

  19. Effects of feral cats on the evolution of anti-predator behaviours in island reptiles: insights from an ancient introduction.

    PubMed

    Li, Binbin; Belasen, Anat; Pafilis, Panayiotis; Bednekoff, Peter; Foufopoulos, Johannes

    2014-08-01

    Exotic predators have driven the extinction of many island species. We examined impacts of feral cats on the abundance and anti-predator behaviours of Aegean wall lizards in the Cyclades (Greece), where cats were introduced thousands of years ago. We compared populations with high and low cat density on Naxos Island and populations on surrounding islets with no cats. Cats reduced wall lizard populations by half. Lizards facing greater risk from cats stayed closer to refuges, were more likely to shed their tails in a standardized assay, and fled at greater distances when approached by either a person in the field or a mounted cat decoy in the laboratory. All populations showed phenotypic plasticity in flight initiation distance, suggesting that this feature is ancient and could have helped wall lizards survive the initial introduction of cats to the region. Lizards from islets sought shelter less frequently and often initially approached the cat decoy. These differences reflect changes since islet isolation and could render islet lizards strongly susceptible to cat predation. PMID:24943365

  20. Effects of feral cats on the evolution of anti-predator behaviours in island reptiles: insights from an ancient introduction

    PubMed Central

    Li, Binbin; Belasen, Anat; Pafilis, Panayiotis; Bednekoff, Peter; Foufopoulos, Johannes

    2014-01-01

    Exotic predators have driven the extinction of many island species. We examined impacts of feral cats on the abundance and anti-predator behaviours of Aegean wall lizards in the Cyclades (Greece), where cats were introduced thousands of years ago. We compared populations with high and low cat density on Naxos Island and populations on surrounding islets with no cats. Cats reduced wall lizard populations by half. Lizards facing greater risk from cats stayed closer to refuges, were more likely to shed their tails in a standardized assay, and fled at greater distances when approached by either a person in the field or a mounted cat decoy in the laboratory. All populations showed phenotypic plasticity in flight initiation distance, suggesting that this feature is ancient and could have helped wall lizards survive the initial introduction of cats to the region. Lizards from islets sought shelter less frequently and often initially approached the cat decoy. These differences reflect changes since islet isolation and could render islet lizards strongly susceptible to cat predation. PMID:24943365

  1. Parasite richness and abundance in insular and mainland feral cats: insularity or density?

    PubMed

    Fromont, E; Morvilliers, L; Artois, M; Pontier, D

    2001-08-01

    Hosts living on islands carry few parasite species, and the prevalence and intensity of directly transmitted parasites are often higher in insular than in mainland populations. However, it is unclear whether density or other features of insular populations can be responsible for the pattern observed. We compared the parasite richness, prevalence and intensity of parasites between 2 feral populations of cats living either at low density on an island (Kerguelen) or at high density on the mainland (Lyon). Parasite richness was higher in Lyon than in Kerguelen, where only Toxocara cati was found. T. cati egg prevalence was higher in Kerguelen (71.1%) than in Lyon (58.0%). Because cat density cannot explain this pattern, we propose that the low number of parasite species, the diet and/or immunity of cats act to increase prevalence in Kerguelen. Moreover, prevalence, intensity and variance-to-mean ratio increased with age and body mass in Kerguelen whereas, in Lyon, prevalence decreased with age and body mass. We hypothesize that the pattern of exposure differs between populations, and that density-dependent parasite mortality is lower in Kerguelen than in Lyon. We discuss the consequences concerning the influence of parasites on insular host populations. PMID:11510679

  2. Cross transmission of gastrointestinal nematodes between captive neotropical felids and feral cats.

    PubMed

    Rendón-Franco, Emilio; Romero-Callejas, Evangelina; Villanueva-García, Claudia; Osorio-Sarabia, David; Muñoz-García, Claudia I

    2013-12-01

    Pathogen cross transmission between wildlife and domestic animals represents an extinction risk for wildlife; however, reliable verification is difficult to perform, and in some cases, it is even considered unlikely to be conducted. The aim of this work was to identify cross transmission of helminths between feral cats and captive wild felids at a zoological park in southeastern Mexico. Feces were collected from jaguars (Panthera onca), cougars (Puma concolor), ocelots (Leopardus pardalis), margays (Leopardus wiedii), and jaguarundis (Puma yagouaroundi). A flotation technique and macroscopic sieving were performed on the feces. Additionally, as part of the noxious fauna control program of the park, feral cats were captured and euthanized. To perform parasitologic studies, helminths from these animals were recovered. Toxocara cati and Trichuris campanula were shared by jaguarundis and feral cats. Ancylostoma sp. was found in jaguar and ocelot and Ancylostoma tubaeforme in feral cats. Additionally, during this study, a couple of jaguarundis died with clinical signs of trichuriasis. This is the first report of T. campanula in jaguarundi. Because feral cats roam freely in the park, transmission could occur from these vertebrates to wild felids. This study shows the risk that parasites represent to wild felids; a similar situation could be found in free-living species, especially in fragmented habitats that favor contact with domestic animals. PMID:24450052

  3. Feline patent Toxoplasma-like coccidiosis among feral cats (Felis catus) in Doha city, Qatar and its immediate surroundings.

    PubMed

    Abu-Madi, Marawan A; Behnke, Jerzy M

    2014-09-01

    Doha city has a high feral cat population and studies of hospital records in Doha have shown that human toxoplasmosis also occurs. Clearly, there is a need to understand the role of cats as vectors of human toxoplasmosis in the city and as a first step we assessed the extent of patent Toxoplasma-like coccidial infections among feral cats. Oocysts in cat faeces were detected between June 2008 and April 2010, from a range of locations radiating out of the city centre in concentric semi circular/elliptic rings and by north, west and south divisions within each of the rings. In total 4,652 cats were sampled and overall prevalence of oocysts was 9.1%. Prevalence was 10.1% in the first summer, and then dropped to 8.4% in the following winter and further to 6.8% in the next summer before rising to 10.6% in the final winter of the study; this interaction between annual period and season was significant. There were also significant changes in prevalence across each of the consecutive months of the study, but no clear pattern was evident. Prevalence did not vary significantly by city sector and there was no difference in prevalence between the host sexes. We conclude therefore, that despite minor and significant perturbations, the prevalence of patent Toxoplasma-like coccidial infections among cats in Doha is remarkably stable throughout the year, across years and spatially within the city's districts. PMID:25119351

  4. Atypical Toxoplasma gondii genotype in feral cats from the Fernando de Noronha Island, northeastern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Melo, R P B; Almeida, J C; Lima, D C V; Pedrosa, C M; Magalhães, F J R; Alcântara, A M; Barros, L D; Vieira, R F C; Garcia, J L; Mota, R A

    2016-07-15

    Toxoplasma gondii isolates from Brazil have a different phenotypic and genotypic pattern, with predominance of virulent isolates and recombinant genotypes, compared to the North Hemisphere. Considering that a new T. gondii genotype, non-pathogenic to mice, was previously identified from free-range chickens from the Fernando de Noronha Island, Brazil, this study aimed to identify genotypes of this parasite in tissue samples of feral cats (Felis catus) from this Brazilian Island. Anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies were detected in 18/31 (58%) feral cats. Two non-virulent T. gondii isolates were obtained by mouse bioassay. Genotyping was performed by PCR-RFLP using 10 genetic markers (SAG1, SAG2, SAG3, BTUB, GRA6, c22-8, c29-2, PK1, L358 and Apico) and an atypical strain of T. gondii (ToxoDB #146) was identified. This is the first report of this genotype in feral cats. PMID:27270396

  5. Devil Declines and Catastrophic Cascades: Is Mesopredator Release of Feral Cats Inhibiting Recovery of the Eastern Quoll?

    PubMed Central

    Fancourt, Bronwyn A.; Hawkins, Clare E.; Cameron, Elissa Z.; Jones, Menna E.; Nicol, Stewart C.

    2015-01-01

    The eastern quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus) is a medium-sized Australian marsupial carnivore that has recently undergone a rapid and severe population decline over the 10 years to 2009, with no sign of recovery. This decline has been linked to a period of unfavourable weather, but subsequent improved weather conditions have not been matched by quoll recovery. A recent study suggested another mechanism: that declines in Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) populations, due to the spread of the fatal Devil Facial Tumour Disease, have released feral cats (Felis catus) from competitive suppression, with eastern quoll declines linked to a subsequent increase in cat sightings. Yet current evidence of intraguild suppression among devils, cats and quolls is scant and equivocal. We therefore assessed the influences of top-down effects on abundance and activity patterns among devils, feral cats and eastern quolls. Between 2011 and 2013, we monitored four carnivore populations using longitudinal trapping and camera surveys, and performed camera surveys at 12 additional sites throughout the eastern quoll’s range. We did not find evidence of a negative relationship between devil and cat abundance, nor of higher cat abundance in areas where devil populations had declined the longest. Cats did not appear to avoid devils spatially; however, there was evidence of temporal separation of cat and devil activity, with reduced separation and increasing nocturnal activity observed in areas where devils had declined the longest. Cats and quolls used the same areas, and there was no evidence that cat and quoll abundances were negatively related. Temporal overlap in observed cat and quoll activity was higher in summer than in winter, but this seasonal difference was unrelated to devil declines. We suggest that cats did not cause the recent quoll decline, but that predation of juvenile quolls by cats could be inhibiting low density quoll populations from recovering their former abundance

  6. Feral Cats Are Better Killers in Open Habitats, Revealed by Animal-Borne Video

    PubMed Central

    McGregor, Hugh; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E.; Johnson, Christopher N.

    2015-01-01

    One of the key gaps in understanding the impacts of predation by small mammalian predators on prey is how habitat structure affects the hunting success of small predators, such as feral cats. These effects are poorly understood due to the difficulty of observing actual hunting behaviours. We attached collar-mounted video cameras to feral cats living in a tropical savanna environment in northern Australia, and measured variation in hunting success among different microhabitats (open areas, dense grass and complex rocks). From 89 hours of footage, we recorded 101 hunting events, of which 32 were successful. Of these kills, 28% were not eaten. Hunting success was highly dependent on microhabitat structure surrounding prey, increasing from 17% in habitats with dense grass or complex rocks to 70% in open areas. This research shows that habitat structure has a profound influence on the impacts of small predators on their prey. This has broad implications for management of vegetation and disturbance processes (like fire and grazing) in areas where feral cats threaten native fauna. Maintaining complex vegetation cover can reduce predation rates of small prey species from feral cat predation. PMID:26288224

  7. Feral Cats Are Better Killers in Open Habitats, Revealed by Animal-Borne Video.

    PubMed

    McGregor, Hugh; Legge, Sarah; Jones, Menna E; Johnson, Christopher N

    2015-01-01

    One of the key gaps in understanding the impacts of predation by small mammalian predators on prey is how habitat structure affects the hunting success of small predators, such as feral cats. These effects are poorly understood due to the difficulty of observing actual hunting behaviours. We attached collar-mounted video cameras to feral cats living in a tropical savanna environment in northern Australia, and measured variation in hunting success among different microhabitats (open areas, dense grass and complex rocks). From 89 hours of footage, we recorded 101 hunting events, of which 32 were successful. Of these kills, 28% were not eaten. Hunting success was highly dependent on microhabitat structure surrounding prey, increasing from 17% in habitats with dense grass or complex rocks to 70% in open areas. This research shows that habitat structure has a profound influence on the impacts of small predators on their prey. This has broad implications for management of vegetation and disturbance processes (like fire and grazing) in areas where feral cats threaten native fauna. Maintaining complex vegetation cover can reduce predation rates of small prey species from feral cat predation. PMID:26288224

  8. Management of feral domestic cats in the urban environment of Rome (Italy).

    PubMed

    Natoli, Eugenia; Maragliano, Laura; Cariola, Giuseppe; Faini, Anna; Bonanni, Roberto; Cafazzo, Simona; Fantini, Claudio

    2006-12-18

    In Italy, which is rabies-free, the national Law No. 281 [Legge Nazionale 14 agosto 1991. No. 281: Legge Quadro in materia di animali di affezione e prevenzione del randagismo. Gazz. Uff. Rep. Ital. no 203 del 30 agosto 1991: p. 3] on the management of pets and on the control of feral cats has introduced the no-kill policy for this species. Thus, "trap-neuter-release" (TNR) programs have been carried out for >10 years. In this paper we present data on registered colonies and censused cats in Rome from 1991 to 2000; the results of the neutering campaign from 1991 to 2000; and a survey, on 103 cat colonies, on the effects of demographic control of urban feral-cat colonies in the city of Rome, carried out by the local Veterinary Public Services (VPS) in collaboration with the associations of cat care-takers. In 10 years almost 8000 were neutered and reintroduced in their original colony. The spay/neuter campaigns brought about a general decrease in cat number but the percentage of cat immigration (due to abandonment and spontaneous arrival) is around 21%. This suggests that all these efforts without an effective education of people to control the reproduction of house cats (as a prevention for abandonment) are a waste of money, time and energy. PMID:17034887

  9. What's in a name? Perceptions of stray and feral cat welfare and control in Aotearoa, New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Farnworth, Mark J; Campbell, Joanna; Adams, Nigel J

    2011-01-01

    New Zealanders (n = 354) rated the acceptability of lethal and nonlethal cat control methods and the importance of conservation and welfare. Lethal control was more acceptable for feral cats than strays; for nonlethal control, the inverse was true. More than concern for the welfare of cats subjected to control, perceived conservation benefits, risk of disease transfer, and companion cat welfare dictated the acceptability of control measures. Similarly, the welfare consideration for groups of cats differed, transitioning from companion (highest) to feral (lowest). Differences in attitudes toward acceptability of control methods were evident. In particular, nonhuman animal professionals ranked lethal control as more acceptable than did nonanimal professionals. Cat caregivers (owners) considered both conservation and welfare issues of greater importance than did nonowners. Owners ranked the acceptability of nonlethal control methods higher for stray cats, but not feral, than did nonowners. This research indicates that the use of the terms stray and feral may have significant impact on cats in New Zealand. There is also a greater consideration of conservation values than of welfare in stray and feral cat control. PMID:21191848

  10. Epidemiological survey of zoonotic helminths in feral cats in Gran Canaria island (Macaronesian archipelago-Spain).

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Ponce, Eligia; González, Jorge F; Conde de Felipe, Magnolia; Hernández, Julia N; Raduan Jaber, J

    2016-09-01

    The presence of zoonotic parasites in feral cats have been widely considered all over the world. In Gran Canaria (Macaronesian archipelago, Canary Islands, Spain) the number of feral cats has grown out of control in urban and rural areas. 48 of Felis catus captured in different Gran Canaria areas were studied. Animals were necropsied and several organs were systematically examined in order to collect and identify macroscopic parasites. In addition, coprological tests were done in 28 cats. There were no statistically significant differences in the prevalence rate among sex, age or capture area, showing an overall prevalence of helminths of 77.1%. The most common tapeworms were Dipylidium caninum (64.6%) and Taenia taeniaeformis (31.3%), followed by the nematodes Toxocara cati (20.8%), Ancylostoma tubaeforme (18.8%), Aelurostrongylusabstrusus (10.4%) and Trichuris vulpis (2.08%). We also find several eggs of Alaria alata in the small intestine of one cat (2.08%), being the first description of this trematode in cats in the Canary Islands. Aproximatelly, 40% of the studied cats harboured more than one parasite. High rates of zoonotic species found in these animals suggest the need of controling parasitic infections and preventive measures against them. PMID:27447205

  11. Influenza exposure in United States feral swine populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hall, J.S.; Minnis, R.B.; Campbell, T.A.; Barras, S.; DeYoung, R.W.; Pabilonia, K.; Avery, M.L.; Sullivan, H.; Clark, L.; McLean, R.G.

    2008-01-01

    Swine play an important role in the disease ecology of influenza. Having cellular receptors in common with birds and humans, swine provide opportunities for mixed infections and potential for genetic reassortment between avian, human, and porcine influenza. Feral swine populations are rapidly expanding in both numbers and range and are increasingly coming into contact with waterfowl, humans, and agricultural operations. In this study, over 875 feral swine were sampled from six states across the United States for serologic evidence of exposure to influenza. In Oklahoma, Florida, and Missouri, USA, no seropositive feral swine were detected. Seropositive swine were detected in California, Mississippi, and Texas, USA. Antibody prevalences in these states were 1% in Mississippi, 5% in California, and 14.4% in Texas. All seropositive swine were exposed to H3N2 subtype, the predominant subtype currently circulating in domestic swine. The only exceptions were in San Saba County, Texas, where of the 15 seropositive samples, four were positive for H1N1 and seven for both H1N1 and H3N2. In Texas, there was large geographical and temporal variation in antibody prevalence and no obvious connection to domestic swine operations. No evidence of exposure to avian influenza in feral swine was uncovered. From these results it is apparent that influenza in feral swine poses a risk primarily to swine production operations. However, because feral swine share habitat with waterfowl, prey on and scavenge dead and dying birds, are highly mobile, and are increasingly coming into contact with humans, the potential for these animals to become infected with avian or human influenza in addition to swine influenza is a distinct possibility. ?? Wildlife Disease Association 2008.

  12. Feral burro populations: Distribution and damage assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Tiller, B.L.

    1997-12-01

    This report was prepared to document (1) regional use of the National Training Center (NTC), Fort Irwin, CA, by burros, (2)influence of available water sources for burro use, (3) burro-related damage at several NTC sensitive habitat areas, and (4) management recommendations. All work described in this report was conducted in 1996 and 1997. Roadside transects were conducted and mapped using Geographical Positioning Systems/Geographical Information Systems (GPS/GIS) to indirectly measure relative abundance of feral burros (scat per mile) and to examine the spatial relationship of burro use to permanent or semi-permanent water sources that exist on the NTC. The authors also surveyed several permanent springs for burro-related damage and mapped the impact areas using GPS/GIS to quantify the extent of damage and to provide guidance on size and extent of burro exclosures in those areas. Photographs of the spring sites were also archived and permanent photo points were established for long-term monitoring of feral burro damage areas. In addition, aquatic invertebrate data collected during another spring site study were summarized and discussed in relation to burro-related impacts on the NTC`s sensitive habitats. Several water-quality parameters were also obtained from each spring, including temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, and total dissolved solids.

  13. Molecular identity and prevalence of Cryptococcus spp. nasal carriage in asymptomatic feral cats in Italy.

    PubMed

    Danesi, Patrizia; Furnari, Carmelo; Granato, Anna; Schivo, Alice; Otranto, Domenico; Capelli, Gioia; Cafarchia, Claudia

    2014-10-01

    Cryptococcosis is a life-threatening fungal disease that infects humans and animals worldwide. Inhalation of fungal particles from an environmental source can cause primary infection of the respiratory system. As animals can be considered a sentinel for human diseases, the aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and molecular identity of Cryptococcus spp. in the nasal cavity of feral cats. Cats from 162 urban and rural feral cat colonies were sampled over 3 years. Of 766 cats from which nasal swabs were obtained, Cryptococcus spp. were recovered from 95 (12.6%), including 37 C. magnus (4.8%), 16 C. albidus (2.0%), 15 C. carnescens (1.9%), 12 C. neoformans (1.6%), as well as C. oeirensis (n = 3), C. victoriae (n = 3), C. albidosimilis (n = 2), Filobasidium globisporum (n = 2), C. adeliensis (n = 1), C. flavescens (n = 1), C. dimnae (n = 1), C. saitoi (n = 1), and C. wieringae (n = 1) with prevalence <1%. Thirteen Cryptococcus species were identified by polymerase chain reaction and sequencing of internal transcribed spacer amplicons. Statistical analysis did not identify any predisposing factors that contributed to nasal colonization (eg, sex, age, season, or habitat). Results suggest that asymptomatic feral cats may carry C. neoformans and other Cryptococcus species in their sinonasal cavity. Genotyping of the specific cryptococcal isolates provides a better understanding of the epidemiology of these yeasts. PMID:25082953

  14. An adaptive strategy for reducing Feral Cat predation on endangered hawaiian birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, S.C.; Banko, P.C.; Hansen, H.

    2009-01-01

    Despite the long history of Feral Cats Felis catus in Hawai'i, there has been little research to provide strategies to improve control programmes and reduce depredation on endangered species. Our objective Was to develop a predictive model to determine how landscape features on Mauna Kea, such as habitat, elevation, and proximity to roads, may affect the number of Feral Cats captured at each trap. We used log-link generalized linear models and QAIC c model ranking criteria to determine the effect of these factors. We found that The number of cats captured per trap Was related to effort, habitat type, and Whether traps Were located on The West or North Slope of Mauna Kea. We recommend an adaptive management strategy to minimize trapping interference by non-target Small Indian Mongoose Herpestes auropunctatus with toxicants, to focus trapping efforts in M??mane Sophora chrysophylla habitat on the West slope of Mauna Kea, and to cluster traps near others that have previously captured multiple cats.

  15. The legal status of cats in New Zealand: a perspective on the welfare of companion, stray, and feral domestic cats (Felis catus).

    PubMed

    Farnworth, Mark J; Dye, Nicholson G; Keown, Natasha

    2010-01-01

    Pinpointing and safeguarding the welfare status of domestic cats is problematic, especially in New Zealand where cats are introduced predators with significant impact on indigenous fauna. Usually the identification of welfare status depends on conservational, legal, and public attitudes that are often contrasting. Cats may rapidly transgress definitions placed on them, confounding attempts to categorize them. In 1 generation, cats can move from a human-dependent state ("stray" or "companion") to wild ("feral"). Often this categorization uses arbitrary behavioral and or situational parameters; consequent treatment and welfare protection for these cats are similarly affected. Terminology used to describe cats is not equitable across research. However, the New Zealand Animal Welfare (Companion Cats) Code of Welfare 2007 seeks to create a new definition of the terms companion, stray, and feral. It distinguishes between cats who live within and without human social constructs. This legislation mandates that cats in human environments or indirectly dependent on humans cannot be classified as feral. Such definitions may prove vital when safeguarding the welfare of free-living domestic cats and cat colonies. PMID:20349383

  16. Labeling Feral Spruce Budworm (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) Populations With Rubidium.

    PubMed

    MacKinnon, Wayne; Eveleigh, Eldon; Silk, Peter; Forbes, Glen

    2016-04-01

    Rubidium (Rb) is a trace element that occurs naturally in low concentrations and is easily absorbed by plants, making it a useful tool for labeling insect defoliators, such as spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana Clemens). Balsam fir trees (Abies balsamea (L.) Miller) injected with either 8 or 16 g per tree of rubidium chloride (RbCl) showed quick uptake and distribution throughout the crown, with no negative effects on tree shoot growth or spruce budworm survival and development. Adult spruce budworm that fed as larvae on trees injected with RbCl were clearly labeled, with significantly higher Rb concentrations than the background levels found in adults that fed as larvae on control trees. Rb concentrations in feral spruce budworm adults for both the 8 g (9 µg/g) and 16 g (25 µg/g) per tree treatments were at least five times lower than those in laboratory-reared adults on 1,000 µg/g RbCl diet (125 µg/g); survival, development, pupal weight, sex ratio, and mating status of spruce budworm were not adversely affected by Rb treatment. Egg masses laid by feral females that fed as larvae on Rb-labeled trees were also labeled with Rb. Injecting trees with RbCl is a viable technique for labeling feral spruce budworm populations to help distinguish local populations from immigrants to better evaluate the success of early intervention strategies such as mating disruption. PMID:26920559

  17. Evidence of feline immunodeficiency virus, feline leukemia virus, and Toxoplasma gondii in feral cats on Mauna Kea, Hawaii

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Danner, R.M.; Goltz, Dan M.; Hess, S.C.; Banko, P.C.

    2007-01-01

    We determined prevalence to feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) antibodies, feline leukemia virus (FeLV) antigen, and Toxoplasma gondii antibodies in feral cats (Felis catus) on Mauna Kea Hawaii from April 2002 to May 2004. Six of 68 (8.8%) and 11 of 68 (16.2%) cats were antibody positive to FIV and antigen positive for FeLV, respectively; 25 of 67 (37.3%) cats were seropositive to T. gondii. Antibodies to FeLV and T. gondii occurred in all age and sex classes, but FIV occurred only in adult males. Evidence of current or previous infections with two of these infectious agents was detected in eight of 64 cats (12.5%). Despite exposure to these infectious agents, feral cats remain abundant throughout the Hawaiian Islands. ?? Wildlife Disease Association 2007.

  18. Evidence of feline immunodeficiency virus, feline leukemia virus, and Toxoplasma gondii in feral cats on Mauna Kea, Hawaii.

    PubMed

    Danner, Raymond M; Goltz, Daniel M; Hess, Steven C; Banko, Paul C

    2007-04-01

    We determined prevalence to feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) antibodies, feline leukemia virus (FeLV) antigen, and Toxoplasma gondii antibodies in feral cats (Felis catus) on Mauna Kea Hawaii from April 2002 to May 2004. Six of 68 (8.8%) and 11 of 68 (16.2%) cats were antibody positive to FIV and antigen positive for FeLV, respectively; 25 of 67 (37.3%) cats were seropositive to T. gondii. Antibodies to FeLV and T. gondii occurred in all age and sex classes, but FIV occurred only in adult males. Evidence of current or previous infections with two of these infectious agents was detected in eight of 64 cats (12.5%). Despite exposure to these infectious agents, feral cats remain abundant throughout the Hawaiian Islands. PMID:17495320

  19. Modelling the Dynamics of Feral Alfalfa Populations and Its Management Implications

    PubMed Central

    Bagavathiannan, Muthukumar V.; Begg, Graham S.; Gulden, Robert H.; Van Acker, Rene C.

    2012-01-01

    Background Feral populations of cultivated crops can pose challenges to novel trait confinement within agricultural landscapes. Simulation models can be helpful in investigating the underlying dynamics of feral populations and determining suitable management options. Methodology/Principal Findings We developed a stage-structured matrix population model for roadside feral alfalfa populations occurring in southern Manitoba, Canada. The model accounted for the existence of density-dependence and recruitment subsidy in feral populations. We used the model to investigate the long-term dynamics of feral alfalfa populations, and to evaluate the effectiveness of simulated management strategies such as herbicide application and mowing in controlling feral alfalfa. Results suggest that alfalfa populations occurring in roadside habitats can be persistent and less likely to go extinct under current roadverge management scenarios. Management attempts focused on controlling adult plants alone can be counterproductive due to the presence of density-dependent effects. Targeted herbicide application, which can achieve complete control of seedlings, rosettes and established plants, will be an effective strategy, but the seedbank population may contribute to new recruits. In regions where roadside mowing is regularly practiced, devising a timely mowing strategy (early- to mid-August for southern Manitoba), one that can totally prevent seed production, will be a feasible option for managing feral alfalfa populations. Conclusions/Significance Feral alfalfa populations can be persistent in roadside habitats. Timely mowing or regular targeted herbicide application will be effective in managing feral alfalfa populations and limit feral-population-mediated gene flow in alfalfa. However, in the context of novel trait confinement, the extent to which feral alfalfa populations need to be managed will be dictated by the tolerance levels established by specific production systems for specific

  20. Home range and movements of Feral cats on Mauna Kea, Hawai'i

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Goltz, Dan M.; Hess, S.C.; Brinck, K.W.; Banko, P.C.; Danner, R.M.

    2008-01-01

    Feral cats Felis catus in dry subalpine woodland of Mauna Kea, Hawai'i, live in low density and exhibit some of the largest reported home ranges in the literature. While 95% fixed kemel home range estimates for three females averaged 772 ha, four males averaged 1 418 ha, and one male maintained a home range of 2 050 ha. Mean daily movement rates between sexes overlapped widely and did not differ significantly (P = 0.083). Log-transformed 95% kernel home ranges for males were significantly larger than those of females (P = 0.024), but 25% kernel home ranges for females were larger than those of males (P = 0.017). Moreover, log-transformed home ranges of males were also significantly larger than those of females in this and seven other studies from the Pacific region (P = 0.044). Feral cats present a major threat to endangered Hawaiian birds, but knowledge of their ecology can be used for management by optimizing trap spacing and creating buffer zones around conservation areas.

  1. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum in feral cats (Felis silvestris catus) in Majorca, Balearic Islands, Spain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Felids are important in the epidemiology of Toxoplasma gondii infection because they are the only hosts that can excrete environmentally-resistant oocysts. Antibodies to T. gondii and Neospora caninum were determined in serum samples from 59 feral cats (Felis silvestris catus) captured in baited tra...

  2. Assessing risks to non-target species during poison baiting programs for feral cats.

    PubMed

    Buckmaster, Tony; Dickman, Christopher R; Johnston, Michael J

    2014-01-01

    Poison baiting is used frequently to reduce the impacts of pest species of mammals on agricultural and biodiversity interests. However, baiting may not be appropriate if non-target species are at risk of poisoning. Here we use a desktop decision tree approach to assess the risks to non-target vertebrate species in Australia that arise from using poison baits developed to control feral house cats (Felis catus). These baits are presented in the form of sausages with toxicant implanted in the bait medium within an acid-soluble polymer capsule (hard shell delivery vehicle, or HSDV) that disintegrates after ingestion. Using criteria based on body size, diet and feeding behaviour, we assessed 221 of Australia's 3,769 native vertebrate species as likely to consume cat-baits, with 47 of these likely to ingest implanted HSDVs too. Carnivorous marsupials were judged most likely to consume both the baits and HSDVs, with some large-bodied and ground-active birds and reptiles also consuming them. If criteria were relaxed, a further 269 species were assessed as possibly able to consume baits and 343 as possibly able to consume HSDVs; most of these consumers were birds. One threatened species, the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) was judged as definitely able to consume baits with implanted HSDVs, whereas five threatened species of birds and 21 species of threatened mammals were rated as possible consumers. Amphibia were not considered to be at risk. We conclude that most species of native Australian vertebrates would not consume surface-laid baits during feral cat control programs, and that significantly fewer would be exposed to poisoning if HSDVs were employed. However, risks to susceptible species should be quantified in field or pen trials prior to the implementation of a control program, and minimized further by applying baits at times and in places where non-target species have little access. PMID:25229348

  3. Assessing Risks to Non-Target Species during Poison Baiting Programs for Feral Cats

    PubMed Central

    Buckmaster, Tony; Dickman, Christopher R.; Johnston, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    Poison baiting is used frequently to reduce the impacts of pest species of mammals on agricultural and biodiversity interests. However, baiting may not be appropriate if non-target species are at risk of poisoning. Here we use a desktop decision tree approach to assess the risks to non-target vertebrate species in Australia that arise from using poison baits developed to control feral house cats (Felis catus). These baits are presented in the form of sausages with toxicant implanted in the bait medium within an acid-soluble polymer capsule (hard shell delivery vehicle, or HSDV) that disintegrates after ingestion. Using criteria based on body size, diet and feeding behaviour, we assessed 221 of Australia's 3,769 native vertebrate species as likely to consume cat-baits, with 47 of these likely to ingest implanted HSDVs too. Carnivorous marsupials were judged most likely to consume both the baits and HSDVs, with some large-bodied and ground-active birds and reptiles also consuming them. If criteria were relaxed, a further 269 species were assessed as possibly able to consume baits and 343 as possibly able to consume HSDVs; most of these consumers were birds. One threatened species, the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) was judged as definitely able to consume baits with implanted HSDVs, whereas five threatened species of birds and 21 species of threatened mammals were rated as possible consumers. Amphibia were not considered to be at risk. We conclude that most species of native Australian vertebrates would not consume surface-laid baits during feral cat control programs, and that significantly fewer would be exposed to poisoning if HSDVs were employed. However, risks to susceptible species should be quantified in field or pen trials prior to the implementation of a control program, and minimized further by applying baits at times and in places where non-target species have little access. PMID:25229348

  4. Isolation of Mycobacterium avium subsp paratuberculosis (Map) from feral cats on a dairy farm with Map-infected cattle.

    PubMed

    Palmer, Mitchell V; Stoffregen, William C; Carpenter, Jeremy G; Stabel, Judith R

    2005-07-01

    Paratuberculosis is an economically important disease of dairy cattle caused by Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (Map). The role of nonruminant, nondomestic animals in the epidemiology of paratuberculosis in cattle is unclear. To examine nonruminant, nondomestic animals for the presence of Map, 25 feral cats, nine mice (species unknown), eight rabbits (Sylvilagus floridanus), six raccoons (Procyon lotor), and three opossums (Didelphis virginiana) were collected from a mid-western dairy with known Map-infected cattle. Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis was isolated from the mesenteric lymph node from seven of 25 (28%) feral cats. Ileum was culture-positive for three of these seven cats, and an isolation of Map was also made from the ileum of one of nine (11%) mice. Tissue samples from other species were negative as determined by Map culture; microscopic lesions consistent with paratuberculosis were not seen in any animal. Restriction fragment polymorphism analysis of isolates from cats and dairy cattle suggest interspecies transmission. The means by which interspecies transmission occurred may be through ingestion of Map-contaminated feces or waste milk or through ingestion of Map-infected prey. Shedding of Map from infected cats was not evaluated. The epidemiologic role of Map-infected feral cats on dairy farms requires further investigation. PMID:16244077

  5. Assessment of the histopathological lesions and chemical analysis of feral cats to the smoke from the Kuwait oil fires.

    PubMed

    Moeller, R B; Kalasinsky, V F; Razzaque, M; Centeno, J A; Dick, E J; Abdal, M; Petrov, I I; DeWitt, T W; al-Attar, M; Pletcher, J M

    1994-01-01

    Twenty-six adult or subadult feral cats were collected from Kuwait approximately 8 months after the ignition of the Kuwait oil wells. These animals were obtained from two sources: 12 animals from Kuwait City, a relatively smoke-free area, and 14 from the city of Ahmadi, an area with heavy smoke. Animals were euthanized and a complete set of tissues consisting of all major organs was taken for histopathology. Samples of lung, liver, kidney, urine, and blood were also taken for toxicology. Histopathological lesions observed in the lung were mild accumulations of anthracotic pigment in the lungs of 17 cats. Hyperplasia of the bronchial and bronchiolar gland in 8 cats, and smooth muscle hyperplasia of bronchioles in 14 cats. Tracheal gland hyperplasia was observed in 7 cats, and minimal squamous metaplasia of the tracheal mucosa in 17 cats, Laryngeal lesions consisted of submucosal gland hyperplasia in 2 cats and squamous metaplasia of the mucosa in 5 cats. Hyperplasia of the nasal submucosal glands was observed in 6 animals. The pharyngeal mucosa as well as other organs and organ systems were normal in all cats. Atomic absorption analysis for 11 metals was performed; vanadium and nickel levels (two metals that were present in the smoke from the oil fires) are not indicative of substantial exposure to the oil fires. Based on the histopathological findings and toxicological analysis, it is felt that inhalation of air contaminated with smoke from the oil fires had little or no long-term effect on the animals examined. PMID:7884645

  6. Isolation and characterization of viable Toxoplasma gondii isolates revealed possible high frequency of mixed infection in feral cats (felis domesticus) from St. Kitts, West Indies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cats are essential in the epidemiology of Toxoplasma gondii because they are the only hosts that can excrete the environmentally resistant oocysts in nature. Samples of serum, feces, and tissues from feral cats from St. Kitts, West Indies were examined for T. gondii infection. Antibodies to T. gon...

  7. Rabies prevention and management of cats in the context of trap-neuter-vaccinate-release programmes.

    PubMed

    Roebling, A D; Johnson, D; Blanton, J D; Levin, M; Slate, D; Fenwick, G; Rupprecht, C E

    2014-06-01

    Domestic cats are an important part of many Americans' lives, but effective control of the 60-100 million feral cats living throughout the country remains problematic. Although trap-neuter-vaccinate-return (TNVR) programmes are growing in popularity as alternatives to euthanizing feral cats, their ability to adequately address disease threats and population growth within managed cat colonies is dubious. Rabies transmission via feral cats is a particular concern as demonstrated by the significant proportion of rabies post-exposure prophylaxis associated with exposures involving cats. Moreover, TNVR has not been shown to reliably reduce feral cat colony populations because of low implementation rates, inconsistent maintenance and immigration of unsterilized cats into colonies. For these reasons, TNVR programmes are not effective methods for reducing public health concerns or for controlling feral cat populations. Instead, responsible pet ownership, universal rabies vaccination of pets and removal of strays remain integral components to control rabies and other diseases. PMID:23859607

  8. Temporal overlaps of feral cats with prey and competitors in primary and human-altered habitats on Bohol Island, Philippines.

    PubMed

    Bogdan, Vlastimil; Jůnek, Tomáš; Jůnková Vymyslická, Pavla

    2016-01-01

    The vertebrate fauna of the Philippines, known for its diversity and high proportion of endemic species, comprises mainly small- to medium-sized forms with a few large exceptions. As with other tropical ecosystems, the major threats to wildlife are habitat loss, hunting and invasive species, of which the feral cat (Felis catus) is considered the most damaging. Our camera-trapping study focused on a terrestrial vertebrate species inventory on Bohol Island and tempo-spatial co-occurrences of feral cats with their prey and competitors. The survey took place in the Rajah Sikatuna Protected Landscape, and we examined the primary rainforest, its border with agricultural land, and rural areas in the vicinity of villages. Altogether, over 2,885 trap days we captured 30 species of vertebrates-10 mammals (including Sus philippensis), 19 birds and one reptile, Varanus cumingi. We trapped 81.8% of expected vertebrates. Based on the number of events, the most frequent native species was the barred rail (Gallirallus torquatus). The highest overlap in diel activity between cats and potential prey was recorded with rodents in rural areas (Δ = 0.62); the lowest was in the same habitat with ground-dwelling birds (Δ = 0.40). Cat activity was not recorded inside the rainforest; in other habitats their diel activity pattern differed. The cats' activity declined in daylight in the proximity of humans, while it peaked at the transition zone between rainforest and fields. Both rodents and ground-dwelling birds exhibited a shift in activity levels between sites where cats were present or absent. Rodents tend to become active by day in cat-free habitats. No cats' temporal response to co-occurrences of civets (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus and Viverra tangalunga) was found but cats in diel activity avoided domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris). Our first insight into the ecology of this invasive predator in the Philippines revealed an avoidance of homogeneous primary rainforest and a

  9. Assessment of the histopathological lesions and chemical analysis of feral cats to the smoke from the Kuwait oil fires

    SciTech Connect

    Moeller, R.B. Jr.; Dick, E.J.; Pletcher, J.M.

    1994-12-31

    Twenty-six adult or subadult feral cats were collected from Kuwait approximately 8 months after the ignition of the Kuwait oil wells. These animals were obtained from two sources: 12 animals from Kuwait City, a relatively smoke-free area, and 14 from the city of Ahmadi, an area with heavy smoke. Animals were euthanized and a complete set of tissues consisting of all major organs was taken for histopathology. Samples of lung, liver, kidney, urine, and blood were also taken for toxicology. Histopathological lesions observed in the lung were mild accumulations of anthracotic pigment in the lungs of 17 cats. Hyperplasia of the bronchial and bronchiolar gland in 8 cats, and smooth muscle hyperplasia of bronchioles in 14 cats. Tracheal gland hyperplasia was observed in 7 cats, and minimal squamous metaplasia of the tracheal mucosa in 17 cats, Laryngeal lesions consisted of submucosal gland hyperplasia in 2 cats and squamous metaplasia of the mucosa in 5 cats. Hyperplasia of the nasal submucosal glands was observed in 6 animals. The pharyngeal mucosa as well as other organs and organ systems were normal in all cats. Atomic absorption analysis for 11 metals was performed; vanadium and nickel levels (two metals that were present in the smoke from the oil fires) are not indicative of substantial exposure to the oil fires. Based on the histopathological findings and toxicological analysis, it is felt that inhalation of air contaminated with smoke from the oil fires had little or no long-term effect on the animals examined. 36 refs., 3 figs., 7 tabs.

  10. Assessment of the histopathological lesions and chemical analysis of feral cats to the smoke from Kuwait oil fires

    SciTech Connect

    Moeller, R.B.; Kalasinsky, V.F.; Razzaque, M.; Centeno, J.A.; Dick, E.J.

    1994-12-31

    Twenty-six adult or subadult feral cats were collected from Kuwait approximately 8 months after the ignition of the Kuwait oil wells. These animals were obtained from two sources: 12 animals from Kuwait City, a relatively Co smoke-free area, and 14 from the city of Alimadi, an area with heavy smoke. Animals were euthanized and a complete set of tissues consisting of all 0 major organs was taken for histopathology. Samples of lung, liver, kidney, urine, and blood were also taken for toxicology. Histopathological lesions observed in the lung were mild accumulations of anthracotic pigment in the lungs of 17 cats. Hyperplasia of the bronchial and bronchiolar gland in 8 cats, and smooth muscle hyperplasia of bronchioles in 14 cats. Iracheal gland hyperplasia was observed in 7 cats, and minimal squamous metaplasia of the tracheal mucosa in 17 cats, Laryngeal lesions consisted of submucosal gland hyperplasia in 2 cats and squamous metaplasia of the mucosa in 5 cats. Hyperplasia of the nasal submucosal glands was observed in 6 animals. The pharyngeal mucosa as well as other organs and organ systems (a) were normal in all cats. Atomic absorption analysis for 11 metals was performed; vanadium and nickel levels (two metals that were present in the smoke from the oil fires) are not indicative of substantial exposure to the oil fires. Based on the histopathological findings and toxicological analysis, it is felt that inhalation of air contaminated with smoke from the oil fires had little or no long-term effect on the animals examined.

  11. Endoscopic Vasectomy of Male Feral Pigeons (Columba livia) as a Possible Method of Population Control.

    PubMed

    Heiderich, Elisabeth; Schildger, Bernd; Lierz, Michael

    2015-03-01

    To evaluate whether single-entry endoscopic vasectomy of male feral pigeons (Columba livia) significantly reduced fertility and would potentially be valuable for control of feral pigeon populations, 252 male feral pigeons were caught in the city of Berne and endoscopically vasectomized. In this procedure, approximately 1 cm of the deferent duct was removed bilaterally. Rapid, uneventful recoveries occurred in 94% (237/252) of the pigeons, whereas 6% (15/252) died because of complications associated with the procedure, consisting of perforation of the ureter (9/15), major hemorrhage (5/15), and respiratory arrest (1/15). Mean anesthesia time was 23±6 minutes. The vasectomized males were habituated to 2 pigeon houses together with fertile females. Another pigeon house with fertile pairs acted as control. All eggs laid were candled weekly to assess fertility. In the 2 pigeon houses with vasectomized males, the mean fertilization rate was 0.9% (5/563), while in the control pigeon house, the rate was 100% (39/39). The results indicate that endoscopic vasectomy of male feral pigeons may be a promising tool for field control of feral pigeon populations, especially in combination with other methods such as pigeon houses. PMID:25867661

  12. Temporal overlaps of feral cats with prey and competitors in primary and human-altered habitats on Bohol Island, Philippines

    PubMed Central

    Bogdan, Vlastimil; Jůnková Vymyslická, Pavla

    2016-01-01

    The vertebrate fauna of the Philippines, known for its diversity and high proportion of endemic species, comprises mainly small- to medium-sized forms with a few large exceptions. As with other tropical ecosystems, the major threats to wildlife are habitat loss, hunting and invasive species, of which the feral cat (Felis catus) is considered the most damaging. Our camera-trapping study focused on a terrestrial vertebrate species inventory on Bohol Island and tempo-spatial co-occurrences of feral cats with their prey and competitors. The survey took place in the Rajah Sikatuna Protected Landscape, and we examined the primary rainforest, its border with agricultural land, and rural areas in the vicinity of villages. Altogether, over 2,885 trap days we captured 30 species of vertebrates–10 mammals (including Sus philippensis), 19 birds and one reptile, Varanus cumingi. We trapped 81.8% of expected vertebrates. Based on the number of events, the most frequent native species was the barred rail (Gallirallus torquatus). The highest overlap in diel activity between cats and potential prey was recorded with rodents in rural areas (Δ = 0.62); the lowest was in the same habitat with ground-dwelling birds (Δ = 0.40). Cat activity was not recorded inside the rainforest; in other habitats their diel activity pattern differed. The cats’ activity declined in daylight in the proximity of humans, while it peaked at the transition zone between rainforest and fields. Both rodents and ground-dwelling birds exhibited a shift in activity levels between sites where cats were present or absent. Rodents tend to become active by day in cat-free habitats. No cats’ temporal response to co-occurrences of civets (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus and Viverra tangalunga) was found but cats in diel activity avoided domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris). Our first insight into the ecology of this invasive predator in the Philippines revealed an avoidance of homogeneous primary rainforest and a

  13. Isolation and Genetic Characterization of Toxoplasma gondii from Black Bears (Ursus americanus), Bobcats (Lynx rufus), and Feral Cats (Felis catus) from Pennsylvania.

    PubMed

    Dubey, Jitender P; Verma, Shiv K; Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Cassinelli, Ana B; Kwok, Oliver C H; Van Why, Kyle; Su, Chunlei; Humphreys, Jan G

    2015-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii infects virtually all warm-blooded hosts worldwide. Recently, attention has been focused on the genetic diversity of the parasite to explain its pathogenicity in different hosts. It has been hypothesized that interaction between feral and domestic cycles of T. gondii may increase unusual genotypes in domestic cats and facilitate transmission of potentially more pathogenic genotypes to humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. In the present study, we tested black bear (Ursus americanus), bobcat (Lynx rufus), and feral cat (Felis catus) from the state of Pennsylvania for T. gondii infection. Antibodies to T. gondii were found in 32 (84.2%) of 38 bears, both bobcats, and 2 of 3 feral cats tested by the modified agglutination test (cut off titer 1:25). Hearts from seropositive animals were bioassayed in mice, and viable T. gondii was isolated from 3 of 32 bears, 2 of 2 bobcats, and 2 of 3 feral cats. DNA isolated from culture-derived tachyzoites of these isolates was characterized using multilocus PCR-RFLP markers. Three genotypes were revealed, including ToxoDB PCR-RFLP genotype #1 or #3 (Type II, 1 isolate), #5 (Type 12, 3 isolates), and #216 (3 isolates), adding to the evidence of genetic diversity of T. gondii in wildlife in Pennsylvania. Pathogenicity of 3 T. gondii isolates (all #216, 1 from bear, and 2 from feral cat) was determined in outbred Swiss Webster mice; all three were virulent causing 100% mortality. Results indicated that highly mouse pathogenic strains of T. gondii are circulating in wildlife, and these strains may pose risk to infect human through consuming of game meat. PMID:25393429

  14. Territoriality of feral pigs in a highly persecuted population on Fort Benning, Georgia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sparklin, B.D.; Mitchell, M.S.; Hanson, L.B.; Jolley, D.B.; Ditchkoff, S.S.

    2009-01-01

    We examined home range behavior of female feral pigs (Sus scrofa) in a heavily hunted population on Fort Benning Military Reservation in west-central Georgia, USA. We used Global Positioning System location data from 24 individuals representing 18 sounders (i.e., F social groups) combined with markrecapture and camera-trap data to evaluate evidence of territorial behavior at the individual and sounder levels. Through a manipulative experiment, we examined evidence for an inverse relationship between population density and home range size that would be expected for territorial animals. Pigs from the same sounder had extensive home range overlap and did not have exclusive core areas. Sounders had nearly exclusive home ranges and had completely exclusive core areas, suggesting that female feral pigs on Fort Benning were territorial at the sounder level but not at the individual level. Lethal removal maintained stable densities of pigs in our treatment area, whereas density increased in our control area; territory size in the 2 areas was weakly and inversely related to density of pigs. Territorial behavior in feral pigs could influence population density by limiting access to reproductive space. Removal strategies that 1) match distribution of removal efforts to distribution of territories, 2) remove entire sounders instead of individuals, and 3) focus efforts where high-quality food resources strongly influence territorial behaviors may be best for long-term control of feral pigs.

  15. Health status of a recently discovered population of feral swine in Kansas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gipson, P.S.; Veatch, J.K.; Matlack, R.S.; Jones, D.P.

    1999-01-01

    Twenty feral hogs (Sus scrofa) from a newly discovered population on Fort Riley Army Base (Kansas, USA) were shot and examined from November 1993 through February 1994 to assess the health of the population. The hogs were generally healthy, although serologic evidence indicated that some individuals had been exposed to parvovirus, enterovirus, and swine influenza. We found no indications of brucellosis, pseudorabies, or porcine respiratory and reproductive syndrome. Lung worms (Metastrongylus spp.), round worms (Ascaris suum), and whipworms (Trichuris suis) were found in nine, four and two of the hogs, respectively. Seven hogs had infestations of lice (Haematopinus suis). Fence-line contacts were documented between four wild boars and domestic sows, and in three cases wild boars entered pens containing domestic sows. We recommend that hogs be examined periodically from this and other wild populations to monitor health status since new animals may enter populations through deliberate translocation, escape from shooting preserves or domestic swine producers, or dispersal from other feral populations.

  16. Population genetic structure in farm and feral American mink (Neovison vison) inferred from RAD sequencing-generated single nucleotide polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Thirstrup, J P; Ruiz-Gonzalez, A; Pujolar, J M; Larsen, P F; Jensen, J; Randi, E; Zalewski, A; Pertoldi, C

    2015-08-01

    Feral American mink populations (), derived from mink farms, are widespread in Europe. In this study we investigated genetic diversity and genetic differentiation between feral and farm mink using a panel of genetic markers (194 SNP) generated from RAD sequencing data. Sampling included a total of 211 individuals from 14 populations, 4 feral and 10 from farms, the latter including a total of 7 color types (Brown, Black, Mahogany, Sapphire, White, Pearl, and Silver). Our study revealed similar low levels of genetic diversity in both farm and feral mink. Results are consistent with small effective population size as a consequence of line selection in the farms and founder effects of a few escapees from the farms in feral populations. Moderately high genetic differentiation was found between farm and feral animals, suggesting a scenario in which wild populations were founded from farm escapes a few decades ago. Currently, escapes and gene flow are probably limited. Genetic differentiation was higher among farm color types than among farms, consistent with line selection using few individuals to create the lines. Finally, no indications of inbreeding were found in either farm or feral samples, with significant negative values found in most farm samples, showing farms are successful in avoiding inbreeding. PMID:26440156

  17. Neospora caninum exposure in overlapping populations of coyotes (Canis latrans) and feral swine (Sus scrofa).

    PubMed

    Bevins, Sarah; Blizzard, Emily; Bazan, Luis; Whitley, Pat

    2013-10-01

    Limited information exists on Neospora caninum transmission dynamics in wildlife. This coccidian parasite, whose presence can lead to substantial economic losses in cattle operations, requires a canid definitive host for reproduction. We examined exposure in a definitive host, coyotes (Canis latrans), and in overlapping populations of feral swine (Sus scrofa) to determine if spatial proximity between a definitive and incidental host influences the likelihood of parasite exposure. Eighteen percent of coyotes (95% confidence interval [CI] = 14.2-21.8) and 15.8% of feral swine (95% CI = 12.5-19.2) had been exposed to N. caninum, and this is the first report of exposure in US feral swine populations. Analyses suggest that the parasite is present throughout the environment and that exposure is not temporally or spatially linked to antibody-positive coyotes. Antibody-positive feral swine were found in an area where the only definitive host is domestic dogs (Canis familiaris), indicating that wild canids are not required to maintain the parasite in the environment. PMID:24502735

  18. Disease spread models in wild and feral animal populations: application of artificial life models.

    PubMed

    Ward, M P; Laffan, S W; Highfield, L D

    2011-08-01

    The role that wild and feral animal populations might play in the incursion and spread of important transboundary animal diseases, such as foot and mouth disease (FMD), has received less attention than is warranted by the potential impacts. An artificial life model (Sirca) has been used to investigate this issue in studies based on spatially referenced data sets from southern Texas. An incursion of FMD in which either feral pig or deer populations were infected could result in between 698 and 1557 infected cattle and affect an area of between 166 km2 and 455 km2 after a 100-day period. Although outbreak size in deer populations can be predicted bythe size of the local deer population initially infected, the resulting outbreaks in feral pig populations are less predictable. Also, in the case of deer, the size of potential outbreaks might depend on the season when the incursion occurs. The impact of various mitigation strategies on disease spread has also been investigated. The approach used in the studies reviewed here explicitly incorporates the spatial distribution and relationships between animal populations, providing a new framework to explore potential impacts, costs, and control strategies. PMID:21961216

  19. Opinions from the front lines of cat colony management conflict.

    PubMed

    Peterson, M Nils; Hartis, Brett; Rodriguez, Shari; Green, Matthew; Lepczyk, Christopher A

    2012-01-01

    Outdoor cats represent a global threat to terrestrial vertebrate conservation, but management has been rife with conflict due to differences in views of the problem and appropriate responses to it. To evaluate these differences we conducted a survey of opinions about outdoor cats and their management with two contrasting stakeholder groups, cat colony caretakers (CCCs) and bird conservation professionals (BCPs) across the United States. Group opinions were polarized, for both normative statements (CCCs supported treating feral cats as protected wildlife and using trap neuter and release [TNR] and BCPs supported treating feral cats as pests and using euthanasia) and empirical statements. Opinions also were related to gender, age, and education, with females and older respondents being less likely than their counterparts to support treating feral cats as pests, and females being less likely than males to support euthanasia. Most CCCs held false beliefs about the impacts of feral cats on wildlife and the impacts of TNR (e.g., 9% believed feral cats harmed bird populations, 70% believed TNR eliminates cat colonies, and 18% disagreed with the statement that feral cats filled the role of native predators). Only 6% of CCCs believed feral cats carried diseases. To the extent the beliefs held by CCCs are rooted in lack of knowledge and mistrust, rather than denial of directly observable phenomenon, the conservation community can manage these conflicts more productively by bringing CCCs into the process of defining data collection methods, defining study/management locations, and identifying common goals related to caring for animals. PMID:22970269

  20. Health status of a recently discovered population of feral swine in Kansas.

    PubMed

    Gipson, P S; Veatch, J K; Matlack, R S; Jones, D P

    1999-07-01

    Twenty feral hogs (Sus scrofa) from a newly discovered population on Fort Riley Army Base (Kansas, USA) were shot and examined from November 1993 through February 1994 to assess the health of the population. The hogs were generally healthy, although serologic evidence indicated that some individuals had been exposed to parvovirus, enterovirus, and swine influenza. We found no indications of brucellosis, pseudorabies, or porcine respiratory and reproductive syndrome. Lung worms (Metastrongylus spp.), round worms (Ascaris suum), and whipworms (Trichuris suis) were found in nine, four and two of the hogs, respectively. Seven hogs had infestations of lice (Haematopinus suis). Fence-line contacts were documented between four wild boars and domestic sows, and in three cases wild boars entered pens containing domestic sows. We recommend that hogs be examined periodically from this and other wild populations to monitor health status since new animals may enter populations through deliberate translocation, escape from shooting preserves or domestic swine producers, or dispersal from other feral populations. PMID:10479106

  1. Mating Frequencies of Honey Bee Queens (Apis mellifera L.) in a Population of Feral Colonies in the Northeastern United States

    PubMed Central

    Tarpy, David R.; Delaney, Deborah A.; Seeley, Thomas D.

    2015-01-01

    Across their introduced range in North America, populations of feral honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) colonies have supposedly declined in recent decades as a result of exotic parasites, most notably the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor. Nonetheless, recent studies have documented several wild populations of colonies that have persisted. The extreme polyandry of honey bee queens—and the increased intracolony genetic diversity it confers—has been attributed, in part, to improved disease resistance and may be a factor in the survival of these populations of feral colonies. We estimated the mating frequencies of queens in feral colonies in the Arnot Forest in New York State to determine if the level of polyandry of these queens is especially high and so might contribute to their survival success. We genotyped the worker offspring from 10 feral colonies in the Arnot Forest of upstate New York, as well as those from 20 managed colonies closest to this forest. We found no significant differences in mean mating frequency between the feral and managed queens, suggesting that queens in the remote, low-density population of colonies in the Arnot Forest are neither mate-limited nor adapted to mate at an especially high frequency. These findings support the hypothesis that the hyperpolyandry of honey bees has been shaped on an evolutionary timescale rather than on an ecological one. PMID:25775410

  2. Mating frequencies of honey bee queens (Apis mellifera L.) in a population of feral colonies in the Northeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Tarpy, David R; Delaney, Deborah A; Seeley, Thomas D

    2015-01-01

    Across their introduced range in North America, populations of feral honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) colonies have supposedly declined in recent decades as a result of exotic parasites, most notably the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor. Nonetheless, recent studies have documented several wild populations of colonies that have persisted. The extreme polyandry of honey bee queens-and the increased intracolony genetic diversity it confers-has been attributed, in part, to improved disease resistance and may be a factor in the survival of these populations of feral colonies. We estimated the mating frequencies of queens in feral colonies in the Arnot Forest in New York State to determine if the level of polyandry of these queens is especially high and so might contribute to their survival success. We genotyped the worker offspring from 10 feral colonies in the Arnot Forest of upstate New York, as well as those from 20 managed colonies closest to this forest. We found no significant differences in mean mating frequency between the feral and managed queens, suggesting that queens in the remote, low-density population of colonies in the Arnot Forest are neither mate-limited nor adapted to mate at an especially high frequency. These findings support the hypothesis that the hyperpolyandry of honey bees has been shaped on an evolutionary timescale rather than on an ecological one. PMID:25775410

  3. Impacts from control operations on a recreationally hunted feral swine population at a large military installation in Florida.

    PubMed

    Engeman, Richard; Hershberger, Troy; Orzell, Steve; Felix, Rodney; Killian, Gary; Woolard, John; Cornman, Jon; Romano, David; Huddleston, Chet; Zimmerman, Pat; Barre, Chris; Tillman, Eric; Avery, Michael

    2014-06-01

    Feral swine were targeted for control at Avon Park Air Force Range in south-central Florida to avert damage to sensitive wetland habitats on the 40,000-ha base. We conducted a 5-year study to assess impacts from control to this population that had been recreationally hunted for many years. Control was initiated in early 2009. The feral swine population was monitored from 2008 to 2012 using a passive tracking index (PTI) during the dry and wet seasons and using recreational hunter take rates from the dry season. All three indices showed substantial feral swine declines after implementing control, with indices leveling for the final two study years. Military missions and recreational hunting seasons impacted temporal and spatial consistency of control application, thereby limiting further impacts of control efforts on the feral swine population. The PTI was also able to monitor coyotes, another invasive species on the base, and detect Florida black bear and Florida panther, species of particular concern. PMID:24622991

  4. Population ecology of feral horses in an era of fertility control management

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, J.I.

    2012-01-01

    Management of wildlife often requires intervention to regulate growth of populations that would otherwise become overabundant. Controlling fecundity using contraceptives has become an increasingly popular tool for attempting to manage locally overabundant wildlife species, but the population-level effects of such applications are largely unknown. Contraceptive treatments can produce unexpected feedbacks that act on births, survival, immigration, and emigration. Such feedbacks may considerably influence our ability to regulate populations using fertility control. I followed feral horses (Equus caballus) in three intensively managed populations to assess longitudinal treatment effects on demography. The transient contraceptive porcine zona pellucida (PZP) produced longer duration of infertility than intended. Repeated PZP vaccinations of females extended the duration of infertility far beyond the targeted management period, with time to first post-treatment parturition increasing 411days for every annual inoculation received. When these animals did conceive and give birth, parturition was later in the year and temporally asynchronous with forage abundance. An average of 30% (range=11–77%) of females were contracepted annually during the treatment period in all three populations and apparent annual population growth rate was 4–9% lower in the post-treatment years as compared to pretreatment years. Population growth was positive, however, and increased steadily every year that a management removal did not occur. The observed number of births was 33% fewer than the expected number of births, based on number of treated females, individual efficacy of treatment, and number of untreated females and their age-specific fecundity rates. Only half of this difference was explained by the apparent residual effect of treatment. Birth rate in the youngest untreated females (age 2–5 years old) was reduced in years when their conspecifics were treated, enhancing the effects of

  5. How Does a Carnivore Guild Utilise a Substantial but Unpredictable Anthropogenic Food Source? Scavenging on Hunter-Shot Ungulate Carcasses by Wild Dogs/Dingoes, Red Foxes and Feral Cats in South-Eastern Australia Revealed by Camera Traps

    PubMed Central

    Forsyth, David M.; Woodford, Luke; Moloney, Paul D.; Hampton, Jordan O.; Woolnough, Andrew P.; Tucker, Mark

    2014-01-01

    There is much interest in understanding how anthropogenic food resources subsidise carnivore populations. Carcasses of hunter-shot ungulates are a potentially substantial food source for mammalian carnivores. The sambar deer (Rusa unicolor) is a large (≥150 kg) exotic ungulate that can be hunted throughout the year in south-eastern Australia, and hunters are not required to remove or bury carcasses. We investigated how wild dogs/dingoes and their hybrids (Canis lupus familiaris/dingo), red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and feral cats (Felis catus) utilised sambar deer carcasses during the peak hunting seasons (i.e. winter and spring). We placed carcasses at 1-km intervals along each of six transects that extended 4-km into forest from farm boundaries. Visits to carcasses were monitored using camera traps, and the rate of change in edible biomass estimated at ∼14-day intervals. Wild dogs and foxes fed on 70% and 60% of 30 carcasses, respectively, but feral cats seldom (10%) fed on carcasses. Spatial and temporal patterns of visits to carcasses were consistent with the hypothesis that foxes avoid wild dogs. Wild dog activity peaked at carcasses 2 and 3 km from farms, a likely legacy of wild dog control, whereas fox activity peaked at carcasses 0 and 4 km from farms. Wild dog activity peaked at dawn and dusk, whereas nearly all fox activity occurred after dusk and before dawn. Neither wild dogs nor foxes remained at carcasses for long periods and the amount of feeding activity by either species was a less important predictor of the loss of edible biomass than season. Reasons for the low impacts of wild dogs and foxes on sambar deer carcass biomass include the spatially and temporally unpredictable distribution of carcasses in the landscape, the rapid rate of edible biomass decomposition in warm periods, low wild dog densities and the availability of alternative food resources. PMID:24918425

  6. How does a carnivore guild utilise a substantial but unpredictable anthropogenic food source? Scavenging on hunter-shot ungulate carcasses by wild dogs/dingoes, red foxes and feral cats in south-eastern Australia revealed by camera traps.

    PubMed

    Forsyth, David M; Woodford, Luke; Moloney, Paul D; Hampton, Jordan O; Woolnough, Andrew P; Tucker, Mark

    2014-01-01

    There is much interest in understanding how anthropogenic food resources subsidise carnivore populations. Carcasses of hunter-shot ungulates are a potentially substantial food source for mammalian carnivores. The sambar deer (Rusa unicolor) is a large (≥ 150 kg) exotic ungulate that can be hunted throughout the year in south-eastern Australia, and hunters are not required to remove or bury carcasses. We investigated how wild dogs/dingoes and their hybrids (Canis lupus familiaris/dingo), red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and feral cats (Felis catus) utilised sambar deer carcasses during the peak hunting seasons (i.e. winter and spring). We placed carcasses at 1-km intervals along each of six transects that extended 4-km into forest from farm boundaries. Visits to carcasses were monitored using camera traps, and the rate of change in edible biomass estimated at ∼ 14-day intervals. Wild dogs and foxes fed on 70% and 60% of 30 carcasses, respectively, but feral cats seldom (10%) fed on carcasses. Spatial and temporal patterns of visits to carcasses were consistent with the hypothesis that foxes avoid wild dogs. Wild dog activity peaked at carcasses 2 and 3 km from farms, a likely legacy of wild dog control, whereas fox activity peaked at carcasses 0 and 4 km from farms. Wild dog activity peaked at dawn and dusk, whereas nearly all fox activity occurred after dusk and before dawn. Neither wild dogs nor foxes remained at carcasses for long periods and the amount of feeding activity by either species was a less important predictor of the loss of edible biomass than season. Reasons for the low impacts of wild dogs and foxes on sambar deer carcass biomass include the spatially and temporally unpredictable distribution of carcasses in the landscape, the rapid rate of edible biomass decomposition in warm periods, low wild dog densities and the availability of alternative food resources. PMID:24918425

  7. Selective predation by feral cats on a native skink on Guam

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lardner, Björn; Reed, Robert N.; Adams, Amy A. Yackel; Mazurek, M.J.; Hinkle, Thomas J.; Levasseur, Patricia M.; Palmer, Meredith S.; Savidge, Julie A.

    2013-01-01

    Two species of skinks (Fig. 1) occur in a 5-ha plot on Guam where we have been conducting intensive research on Brown Treesnake (Boiga irregularis) population biology for nearly a decade (Rodda et al. 2007). The Pacific Blue-tailed Skink (Emoia caeruleocauda [de Vis 1892]) is native to Guam, whereas the Curious Skink (Carlia ailanpalai Zug 2004) is invasive. On the evening of 27 November 2012, PML and MSP discovered a pile of vomited skinks (Fig. 2) inside the plot (UTM 55P: 269125 m E, 1508930 m N).

  8. Titre distribution patterns of infectious haematopoietic necrosis virus in ovarian fluids of hatchery and feral salmon populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mulcahy, D.; Pascho, R.J.; Jenes, C.K.

    1983-01-01

    Infectious haematopoietic mecrosis virus (IHNV) is enzootic in virtually all populations of sockeye salmon, Oncorhynchus nerka (Walbaum), and in populations of chinook salmon, O. 1shawytscha (Walbaum), of the Sacramento River drainage in California. This disease is an obstacle in hatcheries using brood stocks from these populations. However, naturally spawning sockeye salmon are highly successful and are the most important commercially fished salmon species in the United States. Most of the commercial landings of sockeye salmon are of feral fish originating in Alaska. The success of natural populations of salmon in which IHNV is enzootic, and the recurrent outbreaks of the disease in hatchery fish, led us to compare IHNW prevalence rates in hatchery and feral salmon populations.

  9. Divergence, convergence, and the ancestry of feral populations in the domestic rock pigeon.

    PubMed

    Stringham, Sydney A; Mulroy, Elisabeth E; Xing, Jinchuan; Record, David; Guernsey, Michael W; Aldenhoven, Jaclyn T; Osborne, Edward J; Shapiro, Michael D

    2012-02-21

    Domestic pigeons are spectacularly diverse and exhibit variation in more traits than any other bird species [1]. In The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin repeatedly calls attention to the striking variation among domestic pigeon breeds-generated by thousands of years of artificial selection on a single species by human breeders-as a model for the process of natural divergence among wild populations and species [2]. Darwin proposed a morphology-based classification of domestic pigeon breeds [3], but the relationships among major groups of breeds and their geographic origins remain poorly understood [4, 5]. We used a large, geographically diverse sample of 361 individuals from 70 domestic pigeon breeds and two free-living populations to determine genetic relationships within this species. We found unexpected relationships among phenotypically divergent breeds as well as convergent evolution of derived traits among several breed groups. Our findings also illuminate the geographic origins of breed groups in India and the Middle East and suggest that racing breeds have made substantial contributions to feral pigeon populations. PMID:22264611

  10. Genetic Diversity of Oilseed Rape Fields and Feral Populations in the Context of Coexistence with GM Crops.

    PubMed

    Bailleul, Diane; Ollier, Sébastien; Lecomte, Jane

    2016-01-01

    Despite growing concern about transgenes escaping from fields, few studies have analysed the genetic diversity of crops in an agroecosystem over several years. Accurate information about the dynamics and relationship of the genetic diversity of crops in an agroecosystem is essential for risk assessment and policies concerning the containment of genetically modified crops and their coexistence with crops grown by conventional practices. Here, we analysed the genetic diversity of oilseed rape plants from fields and feral populations over 4 years in an agricultural landscape of 41 km2. We used exact compatibility and maximum likelihood assignment methods to assign these plants to cultivars. Even pure lines and hybrid cultivar seed lots contained several genotypes. The cultivar diversity in fields reflected the conventional view of agroecosystems quite well: that is, there was a succession of cultivars, some grown for longer than others because of their good performance, some used for one year and then abandoned, and others gradually adopted. Three types of field emerged: fields sown with a single cultivar, fields sown with two cultivars, and unassigned fields (too many cultivars or unassigned plants to reliably assign the field). Field plant diversity was higher than expected, indicating the persistence of cultivars that were grown for only one year. The cultivar composition of feral populations was similar to that of field plants, with an increasing number of cultivars each year. By using genetic tools, we found a link between the cultivars of field plants in a particular year and the cultivars of feral population plants in the following year. Feral populations on road verges were more diverse than those on path verges. All of these findings are discussed in terms of their consequences in the context of coexistence with genetically modified crops. PMID:27359342

  11. Genetic Diversity of Oilseed Rape Fields and Feral Populations in the Context of Coexistence with GM Crops

    PubMed Central

    Bailleul, Diane; Ollier, Sébastien; Lecomte, Jane

    2016-01-01

    Despite growing concern about transgenes escaping from fields, few studies have analysed the genetic diversity of crops in an agroecosystem over several years. Accurate information about the dynamics and relationship of the genetic diversity of crops in an agroecosystem is essential for risk assessment and policies concerning the containment of genetically modified crops and their coexistence with crops grown by conventional practices. Here, we analysed the genetic diversity of oilseed rape plants from fields and feral populations over 4 years in an agricultural landscape of 41 km2. We used exact compatibility and maximum likelihood assignment methods to assign these plants to cultivars. Even pure lines and hybrid cultivar seed lots contained several genotypes. The cultivar diversity in fields reflected the conventional view of agroecosystems quite well: that is, there was a succession of cultivars, some grown for longer than others because of their good performance, some used for one year and then abandoned, and others gradually adopted. Three types of field emerged: fields sown with a single cultivar, fields sown with two cultivars, and unassigned fields (too many cultivars or unassigned plants to reliably assign the field). Field plant diversity was higher than expected, indicating the persistence of cultivars that were grown for only one year. The cultivar composition of feral populations was similar to that of field plants, with an increasing number of cultivars each year. By using genetic tools, we found a link between the cultivars of field plants in a particular year and the cultivars of feral population plants in the following year. Feral populations on road verges were more diverse than those on path verges. All of these findings are discussed in terms of their consequences in the context of coexistence with genetically modified crops. PMID:27359342

  12. Reduced spillover transmission of Mycobacterium bovis to feral pigs (Sus scofa) following population control of brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula).

    PubMed

    Nugent, G; Whitford, J; Yockney, I J; Cross, M L

    2012-06-01

    In New Zealand, bovine tuberculosis (bTB) is present in domestic cattle and deer herds primarily as the result of on-going disease transmission from the primary wildlife host, the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula). However, bTB is also present in other introduced free-ranging mammalian species. Between 1996 and 2007, we conducted a series of studies to determine whether poison control of possum populations would have any effect on the prevalence of Mycobacterium bovis infection in sympatric feral pigs (Sus scrofa). We compared trends in the prevalence of bTB infection in feral pigs in six study areas: possum numbers were reduced in three areas, but not in the other three, effectively providing a thrice-replicated before-after-control-intervention design. Before possum control, the overall prevalence of culture-confirmed M. bovis infection in feral pigs was 16.7-94.4%, depending on area. Infection prevalence varied little between genders but did vary with age, increasing during the first 2-3 years of life but then declining in older pigs. In the areas in which possum control was applied, M. bovis prevalence in feral pigs fell to near zero within 2-3 years, provided control was applied successfully at the whole-landscape scale. In contrast, prevalence changed much less or not at all in the areas with no possum control. We conclude that feral pigs in New Zealand acquire M. bovis infection mainly by inter-species transmission from possums, but then rarely pass the disease on to other pigs and are end hosts. This is in contrast to the purported role of pigs as bTB maintenance hosts in other countries, and we suggest the difference in host status may reflect differences in the relative importance of the oral route of infection in different environments. Despite harbouring M. bovis infection for a number of years, pigs in New Zealand do not sustain bTB independently, but are good sentinels for disease prevalence in possum populations. PMID:21849098

  13. Distribution and Differentiation of Wild, Feral, and Cultivated Populations of Perennial Upland Cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) in Mesoamerica and the Caribbean

    PubMed Central

    Coppens d'Eeckenbrugge, Geo; Lacape, Jean-Marc

    2014-01-01

    Perennial forms of Gossypium hirsutum are classified under seven races. Five Mesoamerican races would have been derived from the wild race ‘yucatanense’ from northern Yucatán. ‘Marie-Galante’, the main race in the Caribbean, would have developed from introgression with G. barbadense. The racial status of coastal populations from the Caribbean has not been clearly defined. We combined Ecological Niche Modeling with an analysis of SSR marker diversity, to elucidate the relationships among cultivated, feral and wild populations of perennial cottons. Out of 954 records of occurrence in Mesoamerica and the Caribbean, 630 were classified into four categories cultivated, feral (disturbed and secondary habitats), wild/feral (protected habitats), and truly wild cotton (TWC) populations. The widely distributed three first categories cannot be differentiated on ecological grounds, indicating they mostly belong to the domesticated pool. In contrast, TWC are restricted to the driest and hottest littoral habitats, in northern Yucatán and in the Caribbean (from Venezuela to Florida), as confirmed by their climatic envelope in the factorial analysis. Extrapolating this TWC climatic model to South America and the Pacific Ocean points towards places where other wild representatives of tetraploid Gossypium species have been encountered. The genetic analysis sample comprised 42 TWC accessions from 12 sites and 68 feral accessions from 18 sites; at nine sites, wild and feral accessions were collected in close vicinity. Principal coordinate analysis, neighbor joining, and STRUCTURE consistently showed a primary divergence between TWC and feral cottons, and a secondary divergence separating ‘Marie-Galante’ from all other feral accessions. This strong genetic structure contrasts strikingly with the absence of geographic differentiation. Our results show that TWC populations of Mesoamerica and the Caribbean constitute a homogenous gene pool. Furthermore, the relatively low

  14. HISTOPATHOLOGIC BIOMARKERS IN FERAL FRESHWATER FISH POPULATIONS EXPOSED TO DIFFERENT TYPES OF CONTAMINANT STRESS. (R825433)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Histopathologic alterations of gill, liver, and spleen were studied in feral fish from three freshwater ecosystems that experience different types of contaminant stress. East Fork Poplar Creek (EFPC), a third-order stream in East Tennessee, receives point source discharges of ...

  15. Respiratory nematodes in cat populations of Italy.

    PubMed

    Di Cesare, Angela; Veronesi, Fabrizia; Grillotti, Eleonora; Manzocchi, Simone; Perrucci, Stefania; Beraldo, Paola; Cazzin, Stefania; De Liberato, Claudio; Barros, Luciano A; Simonato, Giulia; Traversa, Donato

    2015-12-01

    The occurrence of common respiratory parasites of domestic cats (the metastrongyloid "cat lungworm" Aelurostrongylus abstrusus and the trichuroid Capillaria aerophila) and of neglected respiratory nematodes of felids (Troglostrongylus brevior, Angiostrongylus chabaudi and Oslerus rostratus) was here evaluated in two and three geographical sites of Northern and Central Italy, respectively. In 2014-2015, individual fecal samples of 868 domestic cats were examined microscopically and genetically, and epidemiological data related to parasitic infections were evaluated as possible risk factors by binary logistic regression models. The most common parasite was A. abstrusus in both mono- and poli-specific infections, followed by T. brevior and C. aerophila, while cats scored negative for other parasites. Cats positive for A. abstrusus (1.9-17 % infection rate) and C. aerophila (0.9-4.8 % infection rate) were found in all examined sites, while cats scored positive for T. brevior (1-14.3 % infection rate) in four sites. Also, T. brevior was here found for the first time in a domestic cat from a mountainous area of Northern Italy. The occurrence of lungworms was statistically related to the presence of respiratory signs and more significant in cats with mixed infection by other lungworms and/or intestinal parasites. Cats living in site C of Central Italy resulted statistically more at risk of infection for lungworms than cats living in the other study sites, while animals ageing less than 1 year were at more risk for troglostrongylosis. Finally, the presence of lungworms was more significant in cats with mixed infection by other lungworms and/or intestinal parasites. These results are discussed under epidemiological and clinical points of views. PMID:26319524

  16. Africanization of a feral honey bee (Apis mellifera) population in South Texas: does a decade make a difference?

    PubMed

    Rangel, Juliana; Giresi, Melissa; Pinto, Maria Alice; Baum, Kristen A; Rubink, William L; Coulson, Robert N; Johnston, John Spencer

    2016-04-01

    The arrival to the United States of the Africanized honey bee, a hybrid between European subspecies and the African subspecies Apis mellifera scutellata, is a remarkable model for the study of biological invasions. This immigration has created an opportunity to study the dynamics of secondary contact of honey bee subspecies from African and European lineages in a feral population in South Texas. An 11-year survey of this population (1991-2001) showed that mitochondrial haplotype frequencies changed drastically over time from a resident population of eastern and western European maternal ancestry, to a population dominated by the African haplotype. A subsequent study of the nuclear genome showed that the Africanization process included bidirectional gene flow between European and Africanized honey bees, giving rise to a new panmictic mixture of A. m. scutellata- and European-derived genes. In this study, we examined gene flow patterns in the same population 23 years after the first hybridization event occurred. We found 28 active colonies inhabiting 92 tree cavities surveyed in a 5.14 km(2) area, resulting in a colony density of 5.4 colonies/km(2). Of these 28 colonies, 25 were of A. m. scutellata maternal ancestry, and three were of western European maternal ancestry. No colonies of eastern European maternal ancestry were detected, although they were present in the earlier samples. Nuclear DNA revealed little change in the introgression of A. m. scutellata-derived genes into the population compared to previous surveys. Our results suggest this feral population remains an admixed swarm with continued low levels of European ancestry and a greater presence of African-derived mitochondrial genetic composition. PMID:27069571

  17. Inbreeding rate and genetic structure of cat populations in Poland.

    PubMed

    Mucha, S; Wolc, A; Gradowska, A; Szwaczkowski, T

    2011-02-01

    The objective of the study was to analyze effective population size and inbreeding level in populations of cat breeds registered in the Polish Studbook. The Association of Purebred Cat Breeders in Poland provided access to pedigrees of 26725 cats from seven breeds. The most frequent breed was Persian, however increasing tendency in numbers of registered animals from other breeds was recorded in later years. Although the percentage of inbred individuals was increasing over time, mating of close relatives was avoided by most of the breeders, and the average inbreeding coefficient exceeded 5% only for Siberian and Russian breeds. Current analysis suggests that the Polish pedigree cat populations are not threatened by negative effects of inbreeding. PMID:21128045

  18. Aerobic bacteria from mucous membranes, ear canals, and skin wounds of feral cats in Grenada, and the antimicrobial drug susceptibility of major isolates.

    PubMed

    Hariharan, Harry; Matthew, Vanessa; Fountain, Jacqueline; Snell, Alicia; Doherty, Devin; King, Brittany; Shemer, Eran; Oliveira, Simone; Sharma, Ravindra N

    2011-03-01

    In a 2-year period 54 feral cats were captured in Grenada, West Indies, and a total of 383 samples consisting of swabs from rectum, vagina, ears, eyes, mouth, nose and wounds/abscesses, were cultured for aerobic bacteria and campylobacters. A total of 251 bacterial isolates were obtained, of which 205 were identified to species level and 46 to genus level. A commercial bacterial identification system (API/Biomerieux), was used for this purpose. The most common species was Escherichia coli (N=60), followed by Staphylococcus felis/simulans (40), S. hominis (16), S. haemolyticus (12), Streptococcus canis (9), Proteus mirabilis (8), Pasteurella multocida (7), Streptococcus mitis (7), Staphylococcus xylosus (7), S. capitis (6), S. chromogenes (4), S. sciuri (3), S. auricularis (2), S. lentus (2), S. hyicus (2), Streptococcus suis (2) and Pseudomonas argentinensis (2). Sixteen other isolates were identified to species level. A molecular method using 16S rRNA sequencing was used to confirm/identify 22 isolates. Salmonella or campylobacters were not isolated from rectal swabs. E. coli and S. felis/simulans together constituted 50% of isolates from vagina. S. felis/simulans was the most common species from culture positive ear and eye samples. P. multocida was isolated from 15% of mouth samples. Coagulase-negative staphylococci were the most common isolates from nose and wound swabs. Staphylococcus aureus, or S. intemedius/S. pseudintermedius were not isolated from any sample. Antimicrobial drug resistance was minimal, most isolates being susceptible to all drugs tested against, including tetracycline. PMID:20627391

  19. A Population Genetic Database of Cat Breeds Developed in Coordination with a Domestic Cat STR Multiplex*

    PubMed Central

    Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; David, Victor A.; Weir, Bruce S.; O’Brien, Stephen J.

    2015-01-01

    A simple tandem repeat (STR) PCR-based typing system developed for the genetic individualization of domestic cat samples has been used to generate a population genetic database of domestic cat breeds. A panel of 10 tetranucleotide STR loci and a gender-identifying sequence tagged site (STS) were co-amplified in genomic DNA of 1043 individuals representing 38 cat breeds. The STR panel exhibits relatively high heterozygosity in cat breeds, with an average 10-locus heterozygosity of 0.71, which represents an average of 38 breed-specific heterozygosities for the 10-member panel. When the entire set of breed individuals was analyzed as a single population, a heterozygosity of 0.87 was observed. Heterozygosities obtained for the 10 loci range from 0.72 to 0.96. The power for genetic individualization of domestic cat samples of the multiplex is high, with a probability of match (pm) of 6.2E-14, using a conservative θ = 0.05. PMID:22268511

  20. Preferential sexual transmission of pseudorabies virus in feral swine populations may not account for observed seroprevalence in the USA

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Gary

    2013-01-01

    This paper compares the behavior of two competing models for the transmission of pseudorabies virus in feral swine in the USA. In first model, horizontal (non-sexual) density dependent transmission is the only transmission modality. In the second model, the only transmission modality is sexual transmission between mature males and females. The comparison of model behavior was carried out to test the hypothesis that preferential sexual transmission of PRV in feral swine can account for the seroprevalence observed in the field. The observed range of seroprevalence of PRV in mature feral swine in the USA is consistent with a preferential sexual transmission only if the feral swine mating system is a random mating system or a polygynous system in which there is a relatively large rate of acquisition of new mates. The observed range of seroprevalence of PRV in mature feral swine in the USA is not consistent with a preferential sexual transmission if there is mate guarding. This is important because the National Pseudorabies Surveillance Plan deems monitoring the risk of PRV introduction from feral swine to be a “minor objective” both in terms of the scope of the plan and with respect to the resources allocated. The rationale for this statement was derived from experimental studies, which suggested that the PRV indigenous to feral swine in the USA is preferentially sexually transmitted. PMID:21962753

  1. Crossing the divide: gene flow produces intergeneric hybrid in feral transgenic creeping bentgrass population.

    PubMed

    Zapiola, María L; Mallory-Smith, Carol A

    2012-10-01

    Gene flow is the most frequently expressed public concern related to the deregulation of transgenic events (Snow 2002; Ellstrand 2003). However, assessing the potential for transgene escape is complex because it depends on the opportunities for unintended gene flow, and establishment and persistence of the transgene in the environment (Warwick et al. 2008). Creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.), a turfgrass species widely used on golf courses, has been genetically engineered to be resistant to glyphosate, a nonselective herbicide. Outcrossing species, such as creeping bentgrass (CB), which have several compatible species, have greater chances for gene escape and spontaneous hybridization (i.e. natural, unassisted sexual reproduction between taxa in the field), which challenges transgene containment. Several authors have emphasized the need for evidence of spontaneous hybridization to infer the potential for gene flow (Armstrong et al. 2005). Here we report that a transgenic intergeneric hybrid has been produced as result of spontaneous hybridization of a feral-regulated transgenic pollen receptor (CB) and a nontransgenic pollen donor (rabbitfoot grass, RF, Polypogon monspeliensis (L.) Desf.). We identified an off-type transgenic seedling and confirmed it to be CB × RF intergeneric hybrid. This first report of a transgenic intergeneric hybrid produced in situ with a regulated transgenic event demonstrates the importance of considering all possible avenues for transgene spread at the landscape level before planting a regulated transgenic crop in the field. Spontaneous hybridization adds a level of complexity to transgene monitoring, containment, mitigation and remediation programmes. PMID:22625177

  2. Genetic and morphometric evidence on a Galápagos Island exposes founder effects and diversification in the first-known (truly) feral western dog population.

    PubMed

    Reponen, Sini E M; Brown, Sarah K; Barnett, Bruce D; Sacks, Benjamin N

    2014-02-01

    Domesticated animals that revert to a wild state can become invasive and significantly impact native biodiversity. Although dogs can be problematic locally, only the Australasian dingo is known to occur in isolation from humans. Western dogs have experienced more intense artificial selection, which potentially limits their invasiveness. However, feral dogs eradicated from Isabela Island, Galápagos in the 1980s could be the first-known exception. We used DNA and morphometric data from 92 of these dogs to test the hypotheses that (i) these dogs persisted independently of humans for up to a century and a half since descending from a handful of dogs introduced in the early 1800s, vs. (ii) similarly to other western feral dog populations, they reflected continuous recruitment of strays from human settlements on a portion of the Island. We detected one dominant maternal lineage and one dominant paternal lineage shared by the three subpopulations, along with low autosomal genetic diversity, consistent with the hypothesized common origins from a small founder population. Genetic diversity patterns among the three island subpopulations were consistent with stepping-stone founder effects, while morphometric differentiation suggested rapid phenotypic divergence, possibly due to drift and reinforced by selection corresponding to distinct microclimates and habitats on Isabela. Despite the continued presence of free-ranging dogs in the vicinity of settlements on Isabela and other Galápagos Islands, feral populations have not reestablished in remote areas since the 1980s, emphasizing the rarity of conditions necessary for feralization of modern western dogs. PMID:24261528

  3. Three Pathogens in Sympatric Populations of Pumas, Bobcats, and Domestic Cats: Implications for Infectious Disease Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Bevins, Sarah N.; Carver, Scott; Boydston, Erin E.; Lyren, Lisa M.; Alldredge, Mat; Logan, Kenneth A.; Riley, Seth P. D.; Fisher, Robert N.; Vickers, T. Winston; Boyce, Walter; Salman, Mo; Lappin, Michael R.; Crooks, Kevin R.; VandeWoude, Sue

    2012-01-01

    Anthropogenic landscape change can lead to increased opportunities for pathogen transmission between domestic and non-domestic animals. Pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats are sympatric in many areas of North America and share many of the same pathogens, some of which are zoonotic. We analyzed bobcat, puma, and feral domestic cat samples collected from targeted geographic areas. We examined exposure to three pathogens that are taxonomically diverse (bacterial, protozoal, viral), that incorporate multiple transmission strategies (vector-borne, environmental exposure/ingestion, and direct contact), and that vary in species-specificity. Bartonella spp., Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), and Toxoplasma gondii IgG were detected in all three species with mean respective prevalence as follows: puma 16%, 41% and 75%; bobcat 31%, 22% and 43%; domestic cat 45%, 10% and 1%. Bartonella spp. were highly prevalent among domestic cats in Southern California compared to other cohort groups. Feline Immunodeficiency Virus exposure was primarily associated with species and age, and was not influenced by geographic location. Pumas were more likely to be infected with FIV than bobcats, with domestic cats having the lowest infection rate. Toxoplasma gondii seroprevalence was high in both pumas and bobcats across all sites; in contrast, few domestic cats were seropositive, despite the fact that feral, free ranging domestic cats were targeted in this study. Interestingly, a directly transmitted species-specific disease (FIV) was not associated with geographic location, while exposure to indirectly transmitted diseases – vector-borne for Bartonella spp. and ingestion of oocysts via infected prey or environmental exposure for T. gondii – varied significantly by site. Pathogens transmitted by direct contact may be more dependent upon individual behaviors and intra-specific encounters. Future studies will integrate host density, as well as landscape features, to better understand the

  4. Three pathogens in sympatric populations of pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats: implications for infections disease transmission

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bevins, Sarah N.; Carver, Scott; Boydston, Erin E.; Lyren, Lisa M.; Alldredge, Mat; Logan, Kenneth A.; Riley, Seth P.D.; Fisher, Robert N.; Vickers, T. Winston; Boyce, Walter; Salman, Mo; Lappin, Michael R.; Crooks, Kevin R.; VandeWoude, Sue

    2012-01-01

    Anthropogenic landscape change can lead to increased opportunities for pathogen transmission between domestic and non-domestic animals. Pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats are sympatric in many areas of North America and share many of the same pathogens, some of which are zoonotic. We analyzed bobcat, puma, and feral domestic cat samples collected from targeted geographic areas. We examined exposure to three pathogens that are taxonomically diverse (bacterial, protozoal, viral), that incorporate multiple transmission strategies (vector-borne, environmental exposure/ingestion, and direct contact), and that vary in species-specificity. Bartonella spp., Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), and Toxoplasma gondii IgG were detected in all three species with mean respective prevalence as follows: puma 16%, 41% and 75%; bobcat 31%, 22% and 43%; domestic cat 45%, 10% and 1%. Bartonella spp. were highly prevalent among domestic cats in Southern California compared to other cohort groups. Feline Immunodeficiency Virus exposure was primarily associated with species and age, and was not influenced by geographic location. Pumas were more likely to be infected with FIV than bobcats, with domestic cats having the lowest infection rate. Toxoplasma gondii seroprevalence was high in both pumas and bobcats across all sites; in contrast, few domestic cats were seropositive, despite the fact that feral, free ranging domestic cats were targeted in this study. Interestingly, a directly transmitted species-specific disease (FIV) was not associated with geographic location, while exposure to indirectly transmitted diseases - vectorborne for Bartonella spp. and ingestion of oocysts via infected prey or environmental exposure for T. gondii - varied significantly by site. Pathogens transmitted by direct contact may be more dependent upon individual behaviors and intra-specific encounters. Future studies will integrate host density, as well as landscape features, to better understand the

  5. Three pathogens in sympatric populations of pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats: Implications for infectious disease transmission

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bevins, S.N.; Carver, S.; Boydston, E.E.; Lyren, L.M.; Alldredge, M.; Logan, K.A.; Riley, S.P.D.; Fisher, R.N.; Vickers, T.W.; Boyce, W.; Salman, M.; Lappin, M.R.; Crooks, K.R.; VandeWoude, S.

    2012-01-01

    Anthropogenic landscape change can lead to increased opportunities for pathogen transmission between domestic and non-domestic animals. Pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats are sympatric in many areas of North America and share many of the same pathogens, some of which are zoonotic. We analyzed bobcat, puma, and feral domestic cat samples collected from targeted geographic areas. We examined exposure to three pathogens that are taxonomically diverse (bacterial, protozoal, viral), that incorporate multiple transmission strategies (vector-borne, environmental exposure/ingestion, and direct contact), and that vary in species-specificity. Bartonella spp., Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), and Toxoplasma gondii IgG were detected in all three species with mean respective prevalence as follows: puma 16%, 41% and 75%; bobcat 31%, 22% and 43%; domestic cat 45%, 10% and 1%. Bartonella spp. were highly prevalent among domestic cats in Southern California compared to other cohort groups. Feline Immunodeficiency Virus exposure was primarily associated with species and age, and was not influenced by geographic location. Pumas were more likely to be infected with FIV than bobcats, with domestic cats having the lowest infection rate. Toxoplasma gondii seroprevalence was high in both pumas and bobcats across all sites; in contrast, few domestic cats were seropositive, despite the fact that feral, free ranging domestic cats were targeted in this study. Interestingly, a directly transmitted species-specific disease (FIV) was not associated with geographic location, while exposure to indirectly transmitted diseases - vector-borne for Bartonella spp. and ingestion of oocysts via infected prey or environmental exposure for T. gondii - varied significantly by site. Pathogens transmitted by direct contact may be more dependent upon individual behaviors and intra-specific encounters. Future studies will integrate host density, as well as landscape features, to better understand the

  6. Isolation and genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii from black bears (Ursus americanus), bobcats (Felis rufus), and feral cats (Felis catus) from Pennsylvania

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Toxoplasma gondii infects virtually all warm-blooded hosts worldwide. Recently, attention has been focused on the genetic diversity of the parasite to explain its pathogenicity in different hosts. It has been hypothesized that interaction between feral and domestic cycles of T. gondii may increase u...

  7. Parasite communities in stray cat populations from Lisbon, Portugal.

    PubMed

    Waap, H; Gomes, J; Nunes, T

    2014-12-01

    Stray cats live in high-density colonies in urban areas and pose a health hazard to household cats and humans. In Portugal, information on the parasitic fauna of stray cats is limited and relies mostly on results from faecal analysis. The present survey aimed to determine the prevalence, diversity and intensity of parasites in stray cats from the urban area of Lisbon by means of parasitological necropsy. Internal organs were collected from 162 cats captured in different areas of the city and systematically subjected to parasitological dissection. Helminths were identified by macro- and microscopic examination and protozoa by faecal floatation and sedimentation techniques. The overall prevalence of parasites was 90.7% (95% confidence interval (CI): 85.3-94.6%). A total of 12 parasite species was recorded: Cystoisospora felis (14.2%), Cystoisospora rivolta (46.3%), Sarcocystis sp. (1.2%), Ancylostoma tubaeforme (19.1%), Toxocara cati (38.3%), Ollulanus tricuspis (30.9%), Aelurostrongylus abstrusus (12.4%), Eucoleus aerophilus (0.6%), Taenia taeniaeformis (3.1%), Dipylidium caninum (53.1%), Joyeuxiella pasqualei (15.4%) and Diplopylidium nölleri (3.7%). Overall mean species richness was 2.36 ±  1.52. Helminth mean intensity was highest for O. tricuspis (285.8), followed by D. caninum (42.4), J. pasqualei (14.4), A. tubaeforme (8.1) and T. cati (5.9). The prevalence and variety of parasites found in our sampling are substantially higher than the numbers previously reported in Portugal. Some of the parasites, including T. cati and A. tubaeforme, are zoonotic, which emphasizes the need for parasite control strategies based on demographic containment of stray cat populations in urban areas to promote public health protection. PMID:23719370

  8. The role of feral mammals on wildlife infectious disease prevalence in two nature reserves within Mexico City limits.

    PubMed

    Suzán, Gerardo; Ceballos, Gerardo

    2005-09-01

    Wild and feral medium-sized mammals were live trapped at two natural protected areas within the Mexico City limits to determine antibody prevalence for the most common infectious diseases (rabies, toxoplasmosis, and canine parvovirus) in dogs and cats. Mammals were trapped during the dry (March-April) and rainy seasons (July-August) of 1996 and 1997. A total of 68 individuals were captured, representing 8 species: opossums (Didelphis virginiana), ringtails (Bassariscus astutus), spotted skunks (Spilogale gracilis), weasels (Mustela frenata), rock squirrels (Spermophilus variegatus), Mexican gray squirrels (Sciurus aureogaster), feral cats (Felis catus), and feral dogs (Canis familiaris). There was marked seroprevalence for parvovirus (86.6%) and lower seroprevalences for both toxoplasma (23.9%) and rabies (17.9%). There were no significant prevalence differences among mammals in both protected areas, which were of contrasting size and isolation (i.e., small and isolated versus large and nonisolated). We suggest that high seroprevalence of these three infectious agents in wild mammals is a result of the high densities of feral dogs and cats in the two areas sampled. Feral dogs are able to maintain the infectious agents in these localities regardless of the protected area size and isolation. However, the native mammals of the small and isolated reserve are more vulnerable to infectious diseases because of small population size and genetic bottlenecks. Our results indicate that natural areas in and around Mexico City are a refugium for latent infectious agents, several of which are zoonotic. These findings suggest that conservation measures, such as eradication of feral mammals and vaccination programs, in the protected areas and surrounding areas could be beneficial. PMID:17312768

  9. Genetic divergence between populations of feral and domestic forms of a mosquito disease vector assessed by transcriptomics

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Culex pipiens, an invasive mosquito and vector of West Nile virus in the US, has two morphologically indistinguishable forms that differ dramatically in behavior and physiology. Cx. pipiens form pipiens is primarily a bird-feeding temperate mosquito, while the sub-tropical Cx. pipiens form molestus thrives in sewers and feeds on mammals. Because the feral form can diapause during the cold winters but the domestic form cannot, the two Cx. pipiens forms are allopatric in northern Europe and, although viable, hybrids are rare. Cx. pipiens form molestus has spread across all inhabited continents and hybrids of the two forms are common in the US. Here we elucidate the genes and gene families with the greatest divergence rates between these phenotypically diverged mosquito populations, and discuss them in light of their potential biological and ecological effects. After generating and assembling novel transcriptome data for each population, we performed pairwise tests for nonsynonymous divergence (Ka) of homologous coding sequences and examined gene ontology terms that were statistically over-represented in those sequences with the greatest divergence rates. We identified genes involved in digestion (serine endopeptidases), innate immunity (fibrinogens and α-macroglobulins), hemostasis (D7 salivary proteins), olfaction (odorant binding proteins) and chitin binding (peritrophic matrix proteins). By examining molecular divergence between closely related yet phenotypically divergent forms of the same species, our results provide insights into the identity of rapidly-evolving genes between incipient species. Additionally, we found that families of signal transducers, ATP synthases and transcription regulators remained identical at the amino acid level, thus constituting conserved components of the Cx. pipiens proteome. We provide a reference with which to gauge the divergence reported in this analysis by performing a comparison of transcriptome sequences from conspecific

  10. Genetic divergence between populations of feral and domestic forms of a mosquito disease vector assessed by transcriptomics.

    PubMed

    Price, Dana C; Fonseca, Dina M

    2015-01-01

    Culex pipiens, an invasive mosquito and vector of West Nile virus in the US, has two morphologically indistinguishable forms that differ dramatically in behavior and physiology. Cx. pipiens form pipiens is primarily a bird-feeding temperate mosquito, while the sub-tropical Cx. pipiens form molestus thrives in sewers and feeds on mammals. Because the feral form can diapause during the cold winters but the domestic form cannot, the two Cx. pipiens forms are allopatric in northern Europe and, although viable, hybrids are rare. Cx. pipiens form molestus has spread across all inhabited continents and hybrids of the two forms are common in the US. Here we elucidate the genes and gene families with the greatest divergence rates between these phenotypically diverged mosquito populations, and discuss them in light of their potential biological and ecological effects. After generating and assembling novel transcriptome data for each population, we performed pairwise tests for nonsynonymous divergence (Ka) of homologous coding sequences and examined gene ontology terms that were statistically over-represented in those sequences with the greatest divergence rates. We identified genes involved in digestion (serine endopeptidases), innate immunity (fibrinogens and α-macroglobulins), hemostasis (D7 salivary proteins), olfaction (odorant binding proteins) and chitin binding (peritrophic matrix proteins). By examining molecular divergence between closely related yet phenotypically divergent forms of the same species, our results provide insights into the identity of rapidly-evolving genes between incipient species. Additionally, we found that families of signal transducers, ATP synthases and transcription regulators remained identical at the amino acid level, thus constituting conserved components of the Cx. pipiens proteome. We provide a reference with which to gauge the divergence reported in this analysis by performing a comparison of transcriptome sequences from conspecific

  11. The chimerical genome of Isla del Coco feral pigs (Costa Rica), an isolated population since 1793 but with remarkable levels of diversity.

    PubMed

    Bianco, E; Soto, H W; Vargas, L; Pérez-Enciso, M

    2015-05-01

    The history of domestic species and of their wild ancestors is not a simple one, and feral processes can clarify key aspects of this history, including the adaptive processes triggered by new environments. Here, we provide a comprehensive genomic study of Isla del Coco (Costa Rica) feral pigs, a unique population that was allegedly founded by two individuals and has remained isolated since 1793. Using SNP arrays and genome sequencing, we show that Cocos pigs are hybrids between Asian and European pigs, as are modern international pig breeds. This conclusively shows that, as early as the 18th century, British vessels were loading crossbred pigs in Great Britain and transporting them overseas. We find that the Y chromosome has Asian origin, which has not been reported in any international pig breed. Chinese haplotypes seem to have been transmitted independently between Cocos and other pig breeds, suggesting independent introgression events and a complex pattern of admixing. Although data are compatible with a founder population of N = 2, variability levels are as high in Cocos pigs as in international pig breeds (~1.9 SNPs/kb) and higher than in European wild boars or local breeds (~1.7 SNPs/kb). Nevertheless, we also report a 10-Mb region with a marked decrease in variability across all samples that contains four genes (CPE, H3F3C, SC4MOL and KHL2) previously identified as highly differentiated between wild and domestic pigs. This work therefore illustrates how feral population genomic studies can help to resolve the history of domestic species and associated admixture events. PMID:25827466

  12. Examining the link between personality and laterality in a feral guppy Poecilia reticulata population.

    PubMed

    Irving, E; Brown, C

    2013-08-01

    This study examined whether variation in the strength and direction of lateralization in a detour task was linked with variation in three common personality measurements: boldness, activity and sociability, in a population of wild guppies Poecilia reticulata. Additionally, the aim was to determine whether any consistent correlations between these behavioural traits, known as behavioural syndromes, were present in the study population. The results revealed that all three personality traits were highly repeatable over time in both sexes. Evidence of a complex syndrome in the form of a correlation between boldness, sociability and activity was found; however, this relationship was only present in males. Males that were more active in a familiar environment emerged more quickly from shelter into a novel environment and were more social. In general, male P. reticulata were bold, active and antisocial compared to females, with these differences probably a reflection of opposing life-history strategies. Only a weak link between the strength of cerebral lateralisation and personality was discovered and this was mediated by sex. PMID:23902308

  13. Negative covariance between parasite load and body condition in a population of feral horses.

    PubMed

    Debeffe, Lucie; McLoughlin, Philip D; Medill, Sarah A; Stewart, Kathrine; Andres, Daniel; Shury, Todd; Wagner, Brent; Jenkins, Emily; Gilleard, John S; Poissant, Jocelyn

    2016-07-01

    In wild and domestic animals, gastrointestinal parasites can have significant impacts on host development, condition, health, reproduction and longevity. Improving our understanding of the causes and consequences of individual-level variation in parasite load is therefore of prime interest. Here we investigated the relationship between strongyle fecal egg count (FEC) and body condition in a unique, naturalized population of horses that has never been exposed to anthelmintic drugs (Sable Island, Nova Scotia, Canada). We first quantified variation in FEC and condition for 447 individuals according to intrinsic (sex, age, reproductive status, social status) and extrinsic (group size, location, local density) variables. We then quantified the repeatability of measurements obtained over a field season and tested for covariance between FEC and condition. FECs were high relative to other horse populations (mean eggs per gram ± SD = 1543·28 ± 209·94). FECs generally decreased with age, were higher in lactating vs non-lactating females, and unexpectedly lower in males in some part of the island. FECs and condition were both spatially structured, with patterns depending on age, sex and reproductive status. FECs and condition were both repeatable. Most notably, FECs and condition were negatively correlated, especially in adult females. PMID:27046508

  14. [Characteristics of pedigree cat breeding in the Netherlands: breeds, population increase and litter size].

    PubMed

    Gerrits, P O; Huisman, T; Knol, B W

    1999-03-01

    A survey of the Dutch Cat Fancy was carried out to determine reproductive, patterns of pedigree cats. The data of the present study were obtained by questioning the pedigree registers of the cat clubs participating in the foundation 'Overleg Platform van de Nederlandse Cat Fancy'. The Dutch Cat Fancy registers 34 different cat breeds. From 1992 up to 1996 a total of 25.985 litters were registered. Over this period the number of litters increased from 4989 to 5313. Litters from Longhair and Exotic Shorthair cats comprised the biggest group and accounted for 55% of the total number of litters. However, over this period, the number of Longhair and Exotic Shorthair litters decreased by 9%. Litters from British Shorthair, Birman, Maine Coon and Norwegian Forrest Cat increased in number as did litters from small breeds such as Ragdoll, Bengal and Sphynx. Litters from Abyssinian, Siamese, Oriental Shorthair cats remained relatively the same. The average litter size of the total cat population, based on pedigree certificates, was calculated at 3.3 kittens per litter. For different breeds litter size varied from 2.7 (Longhair and Exotic Shorthair) to 4.3 (Burmese and Maine Coon). Taking into account an average age of 14 years, the total Dutch pedigree cat population was estimated at 240,000 viz. about 10% of the total cat population. PMID:10084198

  15. Cats

    MedlinePlus

    ... found on the skin of people and animals. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is the same bacterium that has become resistant to some antibiotics. Cats and other animals often can carry MRSA ...

  16. Analyzing the proximity to cover in a landscape of fear: a new approach applied to fine-scale habitat use by rabbits facing feral cat predation on Kerguelen archipelago.

    PubMed

    Blanchard, Pierrick; Lauzeral, Christine; Chamaillé-Jammes, Simon; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Pontier, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    Although proximity to cover has been routinely considered as an explanatory variable in studies investigating prey behavioral adjustments to predation pressure, the way it shapes risk perception still remains equivocal. This paradox arises from both the ambivalent nature of cover as potentially both obstructive and protective, making its impact on risk perception complex and context-dependent, and from the choice of the proxy used to measure proximity to cover in the field, which leads to an incomplete picture of the landscape of fear experienced by the prey. Here, we study a simple predator-prey-habitat system, i.e., rabbits Oryctolagus cuniculus facing feral cat Felis catus predation on Kerguelen archipelago. We assess how cover shapes risk perception in prey and develop an easily implementable field method to improve the estimation of proximity to cover. In contrast to protocols considering the "distance to nearest cover", we focus on the overall "area to cover". We show that fine-scale habitat use by rabbits is clearly related to our measure, in accordance with our hypothesis of higher risk in patches with smaller area to cover in this predator-prey-habitat system. In contrast, classical measures of proximity to cover are not retained in the best predictive models of habitat use. The use of this new approach, together with a more in-depth consideration of contrasting properties of cover, could help to better understand the role of this complex yet decisive parameter for predator-prey ecology. PMID:26989615

  17. Analyzing the proximity to cover in a landscape of fear: a new approach applied to fine-scale habitat use by rabbits facing feral cat predation on Kerguelen archipelago

    PubMed Central

    Lauzeral, Christine; Chamaillé-Jammes, Simon; Yoccoz, Nigel G.; Pontier, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    Although proximity to cover has been routinely considered as an explanatory variable in studies investigating prey behavioral adjustments to predation pressure, the way it shapes risk perception still remains equivocal. This paradox arises from both the ambivalent nature of cover as potentially both obstructive and protective, making its impact on risk perception complex and context-dependent, and from the choice of the proxy used to measure proximity to cover in the field, which leads to an incomplete picture of the landscape of fear experienced by the prey. Here, we study a simple predator-prey-habitat system, i.e., rabbits Oryctolagus cuniculus facing feral cat Felis catus predation on Kerguelen archipelago. We assess how cover shapes risk perception in prey and develop an easily implementable field method to improve the estimation of proximity to cover. In contrast to protocols considering the “distance to nearest cover”, we focus on the overall “area to cover”. We show that fine-scale habitat use by rabbits is clearly related to our measure, in accordance with our hypothesis of higher risk in patches with smaller area to cover in this predator-prey-habitat system. In contrast, classical measures of proximity to cover are not retained in the best predictive models of habitat use. The use of this new approach, together with a more in-depth consideration of contrasting properties of cover, could help to better understand the role of this complex yet decisive parameter for predator-prey ecology. PMID:26989615

  18. Acquired antimicrobial resistance in the intestinal microbiota of diverse cat populations.

    PubMed

    Moyaert, H; De Graef, E M; Haesebrouck, F; Decostere, A

    2006-08-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of acquired antimicrobial resistance in the resident intestinal microbiota of cats and to identify significant differences between various cat populations. Escherichia coli, Enterococcus faecalis, E. faecium and Streptococcus canis were isolated as faecal indicator bacteria from rectal swabs of 47 individually owned cats, 47 cattery cats and 18 hospitalised cats, and submitted through antimicrobial sensitivity tests. The results revealed that bacteria isolated from hospitalised and/or cattery cats were more frequently resistant than those from individually owned cats. E. coli isolates from hospitalised cats were particularly resistant to ampicillin, tetracycline and sulfonamide. Both enterococci and streptococci showed high resistance to tetracycline and in somewhat lesser extent to erythromycin and tylosin. Most E. faecium isolates were resistant to lincomycin and penicillin. One E. faecalis as well as one E. faecium isolate from hospitalised cats showed 'high-level resistance' (MIC > 500 microg/ml) against gentamicin, a commonly used antimicrobial agent in case of human enterococcal infections. The results of this research demonstrate that the extent of acquired antimicrobial resistance in the intestinal microbiota of cats depends on the social environment of the investigated population. It is obvious that the flora of healthy cats may act as a reservoir of resistance genes. PMID:16330058

  19. Experimental transmission of Sarcocystis muris (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from the feces of a naturally infected feral cat (Felis catus) to immunocompetent and immunocompromised mice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cats serve as definitive hosts for zoonotic toxoplasmosis, a prevalent infection that threatens human reproductive health, but they also excrete sporocysts of related parasites that pose no known human health risk. Here, we provide the first definitive evidence for natural infection with Sarcocystis...

  20. Growth and fat-body cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCoid, Michael J.; Fritts, Thomas H.

    1989-01-01

    Feral populations of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) exist in several areas of southern California. By following the first cohort of progeny produced by African clawed frogs at a recently colonized site, data on the growth rates and age at first maturity were obtained in field conditions. Females reached maturity at an earlier age than males, grew faster than males, and attained body lengths up to 25% larger than males. Larger females were capable of producing larger numbers of eggs than small females and, therefore, had greater reproductive potential. The relatively stable ambient temperatures of southern California contributed to the possibility of reproduction of clawed frogs during all but the coolest periods of the year. Cycles detected in the mass of fatbodies suggested that nutrients were mobilized from fat prior to and during ovulation. The amount of fat in females varies widely, but fat in males tended to accumulate as the males grew during the study period.

  1. Growth and fatbody cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCoid, M.J.; Fritts, T.H.

    1989-01-01

    Feral populations of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) exist in several areas of southern California. By following the first cohort of progeny produced by African clawed frogs at a recently colonized site, data on the growth rates and age at first maturity were obtained in field conditions. Females reached maturity at an earlier age than males, grew faster than males, and attained body lengths up to 25% larger than males. Larger females were capable of producing larger numbers of eggs than small females and, therefore, had greater reproductive potential. The relatively stable ambient temperatures of southern California contributed to the possibility of reproduction of clawed frogs during all but the coolest periods of the year. Cycles detected in the mass of fatbodies suggested that nutrients were mobilized from fat prior to and during ovulation. The amount of fat in females varied widely, but fat in males tended to accumulate as the males grew during the study period.

  2. Assessing changes in the UK pet cat and dog populations: numbers and household ownership.

    PubMed

    Murray, J K; Gruffydd-Jones, T J; Roberts, M A; Browne, W J

    2015-09-12

    The main aim of this study was to replicate methodology used to estimate the size of the UK pet cat and dog populations in 2006 and the proportion of households owning cats/dogs in 2007, to produce updated data to compare trends in ownership and population sizes. A cross-sectional study design was used to collect telephone interview data from 3155 households in the UK. 2011 UK human census data were used to predict the size of the cat and dog populations owned by households in the UK in 2011. Of the households, 23 per cent (714/3155) owned one or more cats and 30 per cent (940/3155) owned one or more dogs. There was some overlap in pet ownership with 7 per cent (210/3155) of households owning both one or more cats and one or more dogs. There was a small but significant decrease in the proportion of households that owned one or more cats in 2011 compared with 2007, with no change in the proportion owning dogs. However, overall, the total number of cats and dogs that were estimated to be owned by UK households did not change significantly between 2006 and 2011. The estimated size (and 95% CIs) of the pet cat and dog populations in the UK in 2011 was 10,114,764 cats (9,138,603-11,090,924) and 11,599,824 dogs (10,708,070-12,491,578). PMID:26350589

  3. Long-term fertility control in female cats with GonaCon™, a GnRH immunocontraceptive.

    PubMed

    Levy, Julie K; Friary, John A; Miller, Lowell A; Tucker, Sylvia J; Fagerstone, Kathleen A

    2011-11-01

    The uncontrolled reproduction of free-roaming feral cats contributes to overpopulation and associated concerns regarding their welfare and impact on public health and the environment. Nonsurgical fertility control that could be administered to feral cats in the field would be a powerful tool for cat population control. The objective was to test the efficacy and duration of activity of a single-dose GnRH immunocontraceptive vaccine (GonaCon™) on the fertility of adult female laboratory cats. Vaccinated cats (n = 15) received a single injection of vaccine containing a GnRH-KLH conjugate (200 μg) emulsified in a mycobacterial and oil adjuvant on study Day 0. Sham-treated cats (n = 5) received a single injection containing all vaccine components except the GnRH-KLH conjugate. A breeding trial started on study Day 120. Vaccinated cats had a longer time to conception (median 39.7 mo) compared to sham-treated cats (4.4 mo; P < 0.001). A total of 93% of vaccinated cats remained infertile for the first year following vaccination, whereas 73, 53, and 40% were infertile for 2, 3, and 4 y, respectively. At study termination (5 y after a single GnRH vaccine was administered), four cats (27%) remained infertile. The GnRH antibody titers declined more rapidly in short-term responding cats with < 2 y of infertility (n = 4), compared to long-term responding cats that experienced fertility control for >2 y (n = 11) (P < 0.05). Non-painful but persistent late-onset granulomatous injection site masses appeared 2 y after initial vaccination in five cats. We concluded that GnRH immunocontraception is an ideal candidate for further development for feral cat control. PMID:21835455

  4. Effectiveness of Gel Repellents on Feral Pigeons

    PubMed Central

    Stock, Birte; Haag-Wackernagel, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    Simple Summary Feral pigeons live in close association in urban areas. They constitute serious health risks to humans and also lead to high economic loss due to costly damage to buildings, historic monuments, statues and even vegetation. While numerous avian repellent systems are regularly introduced onto the market, scientific proof of efficacy and their use from the point of view of animal welfare is lacking. Therefore, two avian gel repellents were studied on free-living feral pigeons in this study. The focus was set on repellent efficacy and animal welfare concerns. This study’s aim is to contribute to a better understanding of feral pigeon management in our cities. Abstract Millions of feral pigeons (Columba livia) live in close association with the human population in our cities. They pose serious health risks to humans and lead to high economic loss due to damage caused to buildings. Consequently, house owners and city authorities are not willing to allow pigeons on their buildings. While various avian repellents are regularly introduced onto the market, scientific proof of efficacy is lacking. This study aimed at testing the effectiveness of two avian gel repellents and additionally examined their application from animal welfare standpoint. The gels used an alleged tactile or visual aversion of the birds, reinforced by additional sensory cues. We mounted experimental shelves with the installed repellents in a pigeon loft and observed the behavior of free-living feral pigeons towards the systems. Both gels showed a restricted, transient repellent effect, but failed to prove the claimed complete effectiveness. Additionally, the gels’ adhesive effect remains doubtful in view of animal welfare because gluing of plumage presents a risk to feral pigeons and also to other non-target birds. This study infers that both gels lack the promised complete efficacy, conflict with animal welfare concerns and are therefore not suitable for feral pigeon management in

  5. Variation of Cats under Domestication: Genetic Assignment of Domestic Cats to Breeds and Worldwide Random Bred Populations

    PubMed Central

    Kurushima, J. D.; Lipinski, M. J.; Gandolfi, B.; Froenicke, L.; Grahn, J. C.; Grahn, R. A.; Lyons, L. A.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Both cat breeders and the lay public have interests in the origins of their pets, not only in the genetic identity of the purebred individuals, but also the historical origins of common household cats. The cat fancy is a relatively new institution with over 85% of its 40–50 breeds arising only in the past 75 years, primarily through selection on single-gene aesthetic traits. The short, yet intense cat breed history poses a significant challenge to the development of a genetic marker-based breed identification strategy. Using different breed assignment strategies and methods, 477 cats representing 29 fancy breeds were analysed with 38 short tandem repeats, 148 intergenic and five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms. Results suggest the frequentist method of Paetkau (accuracy single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.78, short tandem repeats = 0.88) surpasses the Bayesian method of Rannala and Mountain (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.56, short tandem repeats = 0.83) for accurate assignment of individuals to the correct breed. Additionally, a post-assignment verification step with the five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms accurately identified between 0.31 and 0.58 of the mis-assigned individuals raising the sensitivity of assignment with the frequentist method to 0.89 and 0.92 single nucleotide polymorphisms and short tandem repeats respectively. This study provides a novel multi-step assignment strategy and suggests that, despite their short breed history and breed family groupings, a majority of cats can be assigned to their proper breed or population of origin, i.e. race. PMID:23171373

  6. Variation of cats under domestication: genetic assignment of domestic cats to breeds and worldwide random-bred populations.

    PubMed

    Kurushima, J D; Lipinski, M J; Gandolfi, B; Froenicke, L; Grahn, J C; Grahn, R A; Lyons, L A

    2013-06-01

    Both cat breeders and the lay public have interests in the origins of their pets, not only in the genetic identity of the purebred individuals, but also in the historical origins of common household cats. The cat fancy is a relatively new institution with over 85% of its 40-50 breeds arising only in the past 75 years, primarily through selection on single-gene aesthetic traits. The short, yet intense cat breed history poses a significant challenge to the development of a genetic marker-based breed identification strategy. Using different breed assignment strategies and methods, 477 cats representing 29 fancy breeds were analysed with 38 short tandem repeats, 148 intergenic and five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms. Results suggest the frequentist method of Paetkau (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.78, short tandem repeats = 0.88) surpasses the Bayesian method of Rannala and Mountain (single nucleotide polymorphisms = 0.56, short tandem repeats = 0.83) for accurate assignment of individuals to the correct breed. Additionally, a post-assignment verification step with the five phenotypic single nucleotide polymorphisms accurately identified between 0.31 and 0.58 of the misassigned individuals raising the sensitivity of assignment with the frequentist method to 0.89 and 0.92 for single nucleotide polymorphisms and short tandem repeats respectively. This study provides a novel multistep assignment strategy and suggests that, despite their short breed history and breed family groupings, a majority of cats can be assigned to their proper breed or population of origin, that is, race. PMID:23171373

  7. Parasite pressures on feral honey bees (Apis mellifera sp.).

    PubMed

    Thompson, Catherine E; Biesmeijer, Jacobus C; Allnutt, Theodore R; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Budge, Giles E

    2014-01-01

    Feral honey bee populations have been reported to be in decline due to the spread of Varroa destructor, an ectoparasitic mite that when left uncontrolled leads to virus build-up and colony death. While pests and diseases are known causes of large-scale managed honey bee colony losses, no studies to date have considered the wider pathogen burden in feral colonies, primarily due to the difficulty in locating and sampling colonies, which often nest in inaccessible locations such as church spires and tree tops. In addition, little is known about the provenance of feral colonies and whether they represent a reservoir of Varroa tolerant material that could be used in apiculture. Samples of forager bees were collected from paired feral and managed honey bee colonies and screened for the presence of ten honey bee pathogens and pests using qPCR. Prevalence and quantity was similar between the two groups for the majority of pathogens, however feral honey bees contained a significantly higher level of deformed wing virus than managed honey bee colonies. An assessment of the honey bee race was completed for each colony using three measures of wing venation. There were no apparent differences in wing morphometry between feral and managed colonies, suggesting feral colonies could simply be escapees from the managed population. Interestingly, managed honey bee colonies not treated for Varroa showed similar, potentially lethal levels of deformed wing virus to that of feral colonies. The potential for such findings to explain the large fall in the feral population and the wider context of the importance of feral colonies as potential pathogen reservoirs is discussed. PMID:25126840

  8. Cats and Toxoplasma: implications for public health.

    PubMed

    Dabritz, H A; Conrad, P A

    2010-02-01

    Cats are popular as pets worldwide because they are easy to care for and provide companionship that enriches the lives of human beings. Little attention has been focused on their potential to contaminate the environment with zoonotic pathogens. One such pathogen, the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, rarely causes clinical manifestations in cats or immunocompetent humans; however, it can have serious adverse effects on human foetuses and immunocompromised patients. Many human infections are believed to be acquired from eating undercooked or raw meat, such as pork and lamb (Tenter et al. Int. J. Parasitol., 30, 2000, 1217; Dubey et al. J. Parasitol. 91, 2005, 1082). However, the prevalence of T. gondii infection in human populations that do not consume meat or eat it well-cooked suggests that the acquisition of infection from the environment, via oocysts in soil, water or on uncooked vegetables, is also important (Rawal. Trans. Royal Soc. Trop. Med. Hyg., 53, 1959, 61; Roghmann et al. Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg., 60, 1999, 790; Chacin-Bonilla et al. Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg., 65, 2001, 131). In the past 20 years, two changes occurred that significantly increased the size of the cat population in the USA. Pet cat ownership grew from 50 million to 90 million animals, and animal welfare activists created feeding stations for abandoned and free-roaming cats. As many cat owners allow their cats to deposit faeces outside and cats maintained in colonies always defecate outside, ample opportunity exists for T. gondii oocysts to enter the environment and be transmitted to humans. Prevention efforts should focus on educating cat owners about the importance of collecting cat faeces in litter boxes, spaying owned cats to reduce overpopulation, reducing the numbers of feral cats and promoting rigorous hand hygiene after gardening or soil contact. PMID:19744306

  9. Practical Bias Correction in Aerial Surveys of Large Mammals: Validation of Hybrid Double-Observer with Sightability Method against Known Abundance of Feral Horse (Equus caballus) Populations.

    PubMed

    Lubow, Bruce C; Ransom, Jason I

    2016-01-01

    Reliably estimating wildlife abundance is fundamental to effective management. Aerial surveys are one of the only spatially robust tools for estimating large mammal populations, but statistical sampling methods are required to address detection biases that affect accuracy and precision of the estimates. Although various methods for correcting aerial survey bias are employed on large mammal species around the world, these have rarely been rigorously validated. Several populations of feral horses (Equus caballus) in the western United States have been intensively studied, resulting in identification of all unique individuals. This provided a rare opportunity to test aerial survey bias correction on populations of known abundance. We hypothesized that a hybrid method combining simultaneous double-observer and sightability bias correction techniques would accurately estimate abundance. We validated this integrated technique on populations of known size and also on a pair of surveys before and after a known number was removed. Our analysis identified several covariates across the surveys that explained and corrected biases in the estimates. All six tests on known populations produced estimates with deviations from the known value ranging from -8.5% to +13.7% and <0.7 standard errors. Precision varied widely, from 6.1% CV to 25.0% CV. In contrast, the pair of surveys conducted around a known management removal produced an estimated change in population between the surveys that was significantly larger than the known reduction. Although the deviation between was only 9.1%, the precision estimate (CV = 1.6%) may have been artificially low. It was apparent that use of a helicopter in those surveys perturbed the horses, introducing detection error and heterogeneity in a manner that could not be corrected by our statistical models. Our results validate the hybrid method, highlight its potentially broad applicability, identify some limitations, and provide insight and guidance

  10. Practical Bias Correction in Aerial Surveys of Large Mammals: Validation of Hybrid Double-Observer with Sightability Method against Known Abundance of Feral Horse (Equus caballus) Populations

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Reliably estimating wildlife abundance is fundamental to effective management. Aerial surveys are one of the only spatially robust tools for estimating large mammal populations, but statistical sampling methods are required to address detection biases that affect accuracy and precision of the estimates. Although various methods for correcting aerial survey bias are employed on large mammal species around the world, these have rarely been rigorously validated. Several populations of feral horses (Equus caballus) in the western United States have been intensively studied, resulting in identification of all unique individuals. This provided a rare opportunity to test aerial survey bias correction on populations of known abundance. We hypothesized that a hybrid method combining simultaneous double-observer and sightability bias correction techniques would accurately estimate abundance. We validated this integrated technique on populations of known size and also on a pair of surveys before and after a known number was removed. Our analysis identified several covariates across the surveys that explained and corrected biases in the estimates. All six tests on known populations produced estimates with deviations from the known value ranging from -8.5% to +13.7% and <0.7 standard errors. Precision varied widely, from 6.1% CV to 25.0% CV. In contrast, the pair of surveys conducted around a known management removal produced an estimated change in population between the surveys that was significantly larger than the known reduction. Although the deviation between was only 9.1%, the precision estimate (CV = 1.6%) may have been artificially low. It was apparent that use of a helicopter in those surveys perturbed the horses, introducing detection error and heterogeneity in a manner that could not be corrected by our statistical models. Our results validate the hybrid method, highlight its potentially broad applicability, identify some limitations, and provide insight and guidance

  11. [New data on coat color gene frequencies in cats: 1. the Armavir population].

    PubMed

    Golubeva, N A; Zhigachev, A I

    2007-08-01

    The population of domestic cats from the city of Armavir has been examined. A high frequency of gene O was revealed in the population. Differences among three subpopulations estimated using two genetic distances showed heterogeneity of the Armavir cat population. The extreme samples showed highly significant differences (P < 0.01; chi2[6] = 24.67), likely explained by the structural features of the synantropous population and human-driven frequency- dependent selection operating in it. The feline population of Armavir underwent significant changes during the past two decades. The d(ij) coefficient in it was 0.093; D(p) = 0.05. The frequencies of genes orange and Long-hair have increased in the general population. The frequency of gene dilution has decreased. These changes may have occurred because of genetic exchange with purebred domestic cats that have become more popular as pets in the recent years. PMID:17958308

  12. Strong spatial segregation between wildcats and domestic cats may explain low hybridization rates on the Iberian Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Gil-Sánchez, J M; Jaramillo, J; Barea-Azcón, J M

    2015-12-01

    The European wildcat (Felis silvestris silvestris) is an endangered felid impacted by genetic introgression with the domestic cat (Felis silvestris catus). The problem of hybridization has had different effects in different areas. In non-Mediterranean regions pure forms of wildcats became almost extinct, while in Mediterranean regions genetic introgression is a rare phenomenon. The study of the potential factors that prevent the gene flow in areas of lower hybridization may be key to wildcat conservation. We studied the population size and spatial segregation of wildcats and domestic cats in a typical Mediterranean area of ancient sympatry, where no evidence of hybridization had been detected by genetic studies. Camera trapping of wild-living cats and walking surveys of stray cats in villages were used for capture-recapture estimations of abundance and spatial segregation. Results showed (i) a low density of wildcats and no apparent presence of putative hybrids; (ii) a very low abundance of feral cats in spite of the widespread and large population sources of domestic cats inhabiting villages; (iii) strong spatial segregation between wildcats and domestic/feral cats; and (iv) no relationship between the size of the potential population sources and the abundance of feral cats. Hence, domestic cats were limited in their ability to become integrated into the local habitat of wildcats. Ecological barriers (habitat preferences, food limitations, intra-specific and intra-guild competition, predation) may explain the severe divergences of hybridization impact observed at a biogeographic level. This has a direct effect on key conservation strategies for wildcats (i.e., control of domestic cats). PMID:26358989

  13. Understanding public perceptions of risk regarding outdoor pet cats to inform conservation action.

    PubMed

    Gramza, Ashley; Teel, Tara; VandeWoude, Susan; Crooks, Kevin

    2016-04-01

    Free-ranging domestic cats (Felis catus) incur and impose risks on ecosystems and represent a complex issue of critical importance to biodiversity conservation and cat and human health globally. Prior social science research on this topic is limited and has emphasized feral cats even though owned cats often comprise a large proportion of the outdoor cat population, particularly in urban areas. To address this gap, we examined public risk perceptions and attitudes toward outdoor pet cats across varying levels of urbanization, including along the wildland-urban interface, in Colorado (U.S.A.), through a mail survey of 1397 residents. Residents did not view all types of risks uniformly. They viewed risks of cat predation on wildlife and carnivore predation on cats as more likely than disease-related risks. Additionally, risk perceptions were related to attitudes, prior experiences with cats and cat-wildlife interactions, and cat-owner behavior. Our findings suggest that changes in risk perceptions may result in behavior change. Therefore, knowledge of cat-related risk perceptions and attitudes could be used to develop communication programs aimed at promoting risk-aversive behaviors among cat owners and cat-management strategies that are acceptable to the public and that directly advance the conservation of native species. PMID:26379227

  14. Modeling Interventions in the Owned Cat Population to Decrease Numbers, Knox County, TN.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, Evan P; Lenhart, Suzanne; Ojogbo, Ejebagom J; Rekant, Steven I; Scott, Janelle R; Weimer, Heidi; New, John C

    2016-01-01

    To find management strategies for controlling the owned cat population in Knox County, TN, the authors formulated a mathematical model using biological properties of such nonhuman animals and spay actions on certain age classes. They constructed this discrete-time model to predict the future owned cat population in this county and to evaluate intervention strategies to surgically sterilize some proportion of the population. Using the predicted population size and the number of surgeries for specific scenarios, they showed that focusing on specific age classes can be an effective feature in spay programs. PMID:27152694

  15. Dietary format alters fecal bacterial populations in the domestic cat (Felis catus)

    PubMed Central

    Bermingham, Emma N; Young, Wayne; Kittelmann, Sandra; Kerr, Katherine R; Swanson, Kelly S; Roy, Nicole C; Thomas, David G

    2013-01-01

    The effects of short-term (5-week) exposure to wet or dry diets on fecal bacterial populations in the cat were investigated. Sixteen mixed-sex, neutered, domestic short-haired cats (mean age = 6 years; mean bodyweight = 3.4 kg) were randomly allocated to wet or dry diets in a crossover design. Fecal bacterial DNA was isolated and bacterial 16S rRNA gene amplicons generated and analyzed by 454 Titanium pyrosequencing. Cats fed dry diets had higher abundances (P < 0.05) of Actinobacteria (16.5% vs. 0.1%) and lower abundances of Fusobacteria (0.3% vs. 23.1%) and Proteobacteria (0.4% vs. 1.1%) compared with cats fed the wet diet. Of the 46 genera identified, 30 were affected (P < 0.05) by diet, with higher abundances of Lactobacillus (31.8% vs. 0.1%), Megasphaera (23.0% vs. 0.0%), and Olsenella (16.4% vs. 0.0%), and lower abundances of Bacteroides (0.6% vs. 5.7%) and Blautia (0.3% vs. 2.3%) in cats fed the dry diet compared with cats fed the wet diet. These results demonstrate that short-term dietary exposure to diet leads to large shifts in fecal bacterial populations that have the potential to affect the ability of the cat to process macronutrients in the diet. PMID:23297252

  16. Governmental provisions to manage and eradicate feral swine in areas of the United States.

    PubMed

    Centner, Terence J; Shuman, Rebecca M

    2015-03-01

    Feral swine (wild hogs) are one of the most widely distributed free-ranging mammals in the world. In the United States, feral swine serve as game animals for the sport of hunting in some areas, while they are nuisance species at other locations. Increasing feral swine populations creates negative impacts to growing crops, native plant communities, and wildlife. Feral swine can also serve as reservoirs for a number of bacterial and viral diseases that can infect wild animals, livestock, and humans. The US state governments are adopting statutes and regulations to reduce the growth and dispersal of feral swine populations. An analysis of these provisions suggests that while they seek to control feral swine populations, they are unlikely to provide any significant relief from damages to crops and native ecosystems. More localized reduction plans and a national disease control program are suggested to assuage damages being wrought by these invasive animals. PMID:24845195

  17. Progress in development of immunocontraceptive vaccines for permanent non-surgical sterilization of cats and dogs.

    PubMed

    Munks, M W

    2012-08-01

    Each year, millions of cats and dogs are euthanized worldwide. There are insufficient resources to control shelter animals in developed countries, as well as feral cat and wild dog population levels, with current surgical sterilization techniques. Thus, population control of these animals will likely depend on the development of new non-surgical methods for cat and dog sterilization. One promising area of research is the development of contraceptive vaccines, or immunocontraceptives. In this article, previous approaches aimed at developing contraceptive vaccines will be reviewed, with a focus on those most related to sterilization of cats and dogs. There are a number of steps in reproduction that have been, or could be, targeted by the immune system, and the advantages and obstacles for inducing immunity to each of these will be discussed. Our current understanding of how these vaccines cause sterility, and our current ability to dissect these mechanisms in cats and dogs, also will be discussed. PMID:22827374

  18. Simulating free-roaming cat population management options in open demographic environments.

    PubMed

    Miller, Philip S; Boone, John D; Briggs, Joyce R; Lawler, Dennis F; Levy, Julie K; Nutter, Felicia B; Slater, Margaret; Zawistowski, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Large populations of free-roaming cats (FRCs) generate ongoing concerns for welfare of both individual animals and populations, for human public health, for viability of native wildlife populations, and for local ecological damage. Managing FRC populations is a complex task, without universal agreement on best practices. Previous analyses that use simulation modeling tools to evaluate alternative management methods have focused on relative efficacy of removal (or trap-return, TR), typically involving euthanasia, and sterilization (or trap-neuter-return, TNR) in demographically isolated populations. We used a stochastic demographic simulation approach to evaluate removal, permanent sterilization, and two postulated methods of temporary contraception for FRC population management. Our models include demographic connectivity to neighboring untreated cat populations through natural dispersal in a metapopulation context across urban and rural landscapes, and also feature abandonment of owned animals. Within population type, a given implementation rate of the TR strategy results in the most rapid rate of population decline and (when populations are isolated) the highest probability of population elimination, followed in order of decreasing efficacy by equivalent rates of implementation of TNR and temporary contraception. Even low levels of demographic connectivity significantly reduce the effectiveness of any management intervention, and continued abandonment is similarly problematic. This is the first demographic simulation analysis to consider the use of temporary contraception and account for the realities of FRC dispersal and owned cat abandonment. PMID:25426960

  19. Simulating Free-Roaming Cat Population Management Options in Open Demographic Environments

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Philip S.; Boone, John D.; Briggs, Joyce R.; Lawler, Dennis F.; Levy, Julie K.; Nutter, Felicia B.; Slater, Margaret; Zawistowski, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Large populations of free-roaming cats (FRCs) generate ongoing concerns for welfare of both individual animals and populations, for human public health, for viability of native wildlife populations, and for local ecological damage. Managing FRC populations is a complex task, without universal agreement on best practices. Previous analyses that use simulation modeling tools to evaluate alternative management methods have focused on relative efficacy of removal (or trap-return, TR), typically involving euthanasia, and sterilization (or trap-neuter-return, TNR) in demographically isolated populations. We used a stochastic demographic simulation approach to evaluate removal, permanent sterilization, and two postulated methods of temporary contraception for FRC population management. Our models include demographic connectivity to neighboring untreated cat populations through natural dispersal in a metapopulation context across urban and rural landscapes, and also feature abandonment of owned animals. Within population type, a given implementation rate of the TR strategy results in the most rapid rate of population decline and (when populations are isolated) the highest probability of population elimination, followed in order of decreasing efficacy by equivalent rates of implementation of TNR and temporary contraception. Even low levels of demographic connectivity significantly reduce the effectiveness of any management intervention, and continued abandonment is similarly problematic. This is the first demographic simulation analysis to consider the use of temporary contraception and account for the realities of FRC dispersal and owned cat abandonment. PMID:25426960

  20. Using Dynamic Stochastic Modelling to Estimate Population Risk Factors in Infectious Disease: The Example of FIV in 15 Cat Populations

    PubMed Central

    Fouchet, David; Leblanc, Guillaume; Sauvage, Frank; Guiserix, Micheline; Poulet, Hervé; Pontier, Dominique

    2009-01-01

    Background In natural cat populations, Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) is transmitted through bites between individuals. Factors such as the density of cats within the population or the sex-ratio can have potentially strong effects on the frequency of fight between individuals and hence appear as important population risk factors for FIV. Methodology/Principal Findings To study such population risk factors, we present data on FIV prevalence in 15 cat populations in northeastern France. We investigate five key social factors of cat populations; the density of cats, the sex-ratio, the number of males and the mean age of males and females within the population. We overcome the problem of dependence in the infective status data using sexually-structured dynamic stochastic models. Only the age of males and females had an effect (p = 0.043 and p = 0.02, respectively) on the male-to-female transmission rate. Due to multiple tests, it is even likely that these effects are, in reality, not significant. Finally we show that, in our study area, the data can be explained by a very simple model that does not invoke any risk factor. Conclusion Our conclusion is that, in host-parasite systems in general, fluctuations due to stochasticity in the transmission process are naturally very large and may alone explain a larger part of the variability in observed disease prevalence between populations than previously expected. Finally, we determined confidence intervals for the simple model parameters that can be used to further aid in management of the disease. PMID:19888418

  1. Long-term monitoring of feral genetically modified herbicide-tolerant Brassica napus populations around unloading Japanese ports

    PubMed Central

    Katsuta, Kensuke; Matsuo, Kazuhito; Yoshimura, Yasuyuki; Ohsawa, Ryo

    2015-01-01

    Genetically modified, herbicide-tolerant (GMHT) Brassica napus plants originating from seed spill have recently been found along roadsides leading from Japanese ports that unload oilseed rape. Such introductions have potential biodiversity effects (as defined by the Cartagena Protocol): these include replacement of native elements in the biota through competitive suppression or hybridization. We conducted surveys in the period 2006–2011 to assess such threats. We examined shifts in the population distribution and occurrence of GMHT plants in 1,029 volunteer introduced assemblages of B. napus, 1,169 of B. juncea, and 184 of B. rapa around 12 ports. GMHT B. napus was found around 10 of 12 ports, but its proportion in the populations varied greatly by year and location. Over the survey period, the distributions of a pure non-GMHT population around Tobata and a pure GMHT population around Hakata increased significantly. However, there was no common trend of population expansion or contraction around the 12 ports. Furthermore, we found no herbicide tolerant B. juncea and B. rapa plants derived from crosses with GMHT B. napus. Therefore, GMHT B. napus is not invading native vegetation surrounding its populations and not likely to cross with congeners in Japanese environment. PMID:26175624

  2. Long-term monitoring of feral genetically modified herbicide-tolerant Brassica napus populations around unloading Japanese ports.

    PubMed

    Katsuta, Kensuke; Matsuo, Kazuhito; Yoshimura, Yasuyuki; Ohsawa, Ryo

    2015-06-01

    Genetically modified, herbicide-tolerant (GMHT) Brassica napus plants originating from seed spill have recently been found along roadsides leading from Japanese ports that unload oilseed rape. Such introductions have potential biodiversity effects (as defined by the Cartagena Protocol): these include replacement of native elements in the biota through competitive suppression or hybridization. We conducted surveys in the period 2006-2011 to assess such threats. We examined shifts in the population distribution and occurrence of GMHT plants in 1,029 volunteer introduced assemblages of B. napus, 1,169 of B. juncea, and 184 of B. rapa around 12 ports. GMHT B. napus was found around 10 of 12 ports, but its proportion in the populations varied greatly by year and location. Over the survey period, the distributions of a pure non-GMHT population around Tobata and a pure GMHT population around Hakata increased significantly. However, there was no common trend of population expansion or contraction around the 12 ports. Furthermore, we found no herbicide tolerant B. juncea and B. rapa plants derived from crosses with GMHT B. napus. Therefore, GMHT B. napus is not invading native vegetation surrounding its populations and not likely to cross with congeners in Japanese environment. PMID:26175624

  3. Costs and benefits of trap-neuter-release and euthanasia for removal of urban cats in Oahu, Hawaii.

    PubMed

    Lohr, Cheryl A; Cox, Linda J; Lepczyk, Christopher A

    2013-02-01

    Our goal was to determine whether it is more cost-effective to control feral cat abundance with trap-neuter-release programs or trap and euthanize programs. Using STELLA 7, systems modeling software, we modeled changes over 30 years in abundance of cats in a feral colony in response to each management method and the costs and benefits associated with each method . We included costs associated with providing food, veterinary care, and microchips to the colony cats and the cost of euthanasia, wages, and trapping equipment in the model. Due to a lack of data on predation rates and disease transmission by feral cats the only benefits incorporated into the analyses were reduced predation on Wedge-tailed Shearwaters (Puffinus pacificus). When no additional domestic cats were abandoned by owners and the trap and euthanize program removed 30,000 cats in the first year, the colony was extirpated in at least 75% of model simulations within the second year. It took 30 years for trap-neuter-release to extirpate the colony. When the cat population was supplemented with 10% of the initial population size per year, the colony returned to carrying capacity within 6 years and the trap and euthanize program had to be repeated, whereas trap-neuter-release never reduced the number of cats to near zero within the 30-year time frame of the model. The abandonment of domestic cats reduced the cost effectiveness of both trap-neuter-release and trap and euthanize. Trap-neuter-release was approximately twice as expensive to implement as a trap and euthanize program. Results of sensitivity analyses suggested trap-neuter-release programs that employ volunteers are still less cost-effective than trap and euthanize programs that employ paid professionals and that trap-neuter-release was only effective when the total number of colony cats in an area was below 1000. Reducing the rate of abandonment of domestic cats appears to be a more effective solution for reducing the abundance of feral cats

  4. Change-in-ratio density estimator for feral pigs is less biased than closed mark-recapture estimates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hanson, L.B.; Grand, J.B.; Mitchell, M.S.; Jolley, D.B.; Sparklin, B.D.; Ditchkoff, S.S.

    2008-01-01

    Closed-population capture-mark-recapture (CMR) methods can produce biased density estimates for species with low or heterogeneous detection probabilities. In an attempt to address such biases, we developed a density-estimation method based on the change in ratio (CIR) of survival between two populations where survival, calculated using an open-population CMR model, is known to differ. We used our method to estimate density for a feral pig (Sus scrofa) population on Fort Benning, Georgia, USA. To assess its validity, we compared it to an estimate of the minimum density of pigs known to be alive and two estimates based on closed-population CMR models. Comparison of the density estimates revealed that the CIR estimator produced a density estimate with low precision that was reasonable with respect to minimum known density. By contrast, density point estimates using the closed-population CMR models were less than the minimum known density, consistent with biases created by low and heterogeneous capture probabilities for species like feral pigs that may occur in low density or are difficult to capture. Our CIR density estimator may be useful for tracking broad-scale, long-term changes in species, such as large cats, for which closed CMR models are unlikely to work. ?? CSIRO 2008.

  5. Dog and cat management through sterilization: Implications for population dynamics and veterinary public policies.

    PubMed

    Dias, Ricardo Augusto; Baquero, Oswaldo Santos; Guilloux, Aline Gil Alves; Moretti, Caio Figueiredo; de Lucca, Tosca; Rodrigues, Ricardo Conde Alves; Castagna, Cláudio Luiz; Presotto, Douglas; Kronitzky, Yury Cezar; Grisi-Filho, José Henrique Hildebrand; Ferreira, Fernando; Amaku, Marcos

    2015-11-01

    The present study aimed to compare different sterilization scenarios allowing the adoption of the most adequate strategy to control owned dog and cat population sizes as the official veterinary public policy for animal control in an urban area of Campinas municipality, Brazil. To achieve this goal, the vital parameters of the owned pet population were measured in a neighborhood of Campinas called Jardim Vila Olimpia through questionnaires used in two census studies performed in February 2012 and June 2013. Different hypothetical sterilization scenarios were compared with the scenario of a single sterilization campaign performed in the study area between the census studies. Using a deterministic mathematical model, population dynamics were simulated for these different scenarios. We have observed that for both owned dogs and cats, the impact on the population size achieved by a single sterilization campaign would be diluted over the years, equating to the impact achieved by the usual sterilization rate practiced before the sterilization campaign yearly. Moreover, using local and global sensitivity analyses, we assessed the relative influence on animal population evolution of each vital parameter used in the mathematical models. The more influential parameters for both species were the carrying capacity of the environment and sterilization rates of males and females (for both species). We observed that even with sterilizing 100% of the intact animals annually, it would not be possible to obtain proportions greater than 86% and 88% of sterilized dogs and cats, respectively, after 20 years due to the high introduction of new intact animals. There is no public dog and cat sterilization service in place in the city, and sporadic and local sterilization campaigns are performed with a prior communication to the owners to bring their animals to be sterilized in a selected veterinary facility. If a sterilization campaign was performed annually in the study area, it would

  6. Macroparasite communities in stray cat populations from urban cities in Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Mohd Zain, Siti Nursheena; Sahimin, Norhidayu; Pal, Paul; Lewis, John W

    2013-09-23

    The occurrence of macroparasites was studied from 543 stray cats in four urban cities from the west (Kuala Lumpur), east (Kuantan), north (Georgetown) and south (Malacca) of Peninsular Malaysia from May 2007 to August 2010. Five ectoparasites species were recovered namely, Ctenocephalides felis, Felicola subrostratus, Haemaphysalis bispinosa, Heterodoxus spiniger and Lynxacarus radovskyi. Two cats from Georgetown were infested with the dog louse, H. spiniger and this represented the first host record for this species in Malaysia. Up to nine species of helminths were recovered with overall high prevalences of infection of 83% in Kuantan, followed by 75.1% in Kuala Lumpur, 71.6% in Georgetown and 68% in Malacca. The helminth species comprised five nematodes, Toxocara malaysiensis, Toxocara cati, Ancylostoma braziliensis, Ancylostoma ceylanicum, Physaloptera praeputialis, two cestodes Taenia taeniaeformis, Dipylidium caninum and one trematode, Playtnosomum fastosum. The majority of helminths were present in the four study sites except for the absence of P. praeputialis in Kuala Lumpur. The prevalence and abundance of infections were analysed taking intrinsic (host age and sex) and extrinsic (season) factors into consideration. Levels of infection and infestation were mainly influenced by host age and to a lesser extent sex and season, whereas four nematode species exhibited significant interactions within the intestine of the cat host. The potential for transmission of some macroparasite species from stray cats to the human population in urban areas is discussed. PMID:23664711

  7. A Cross-Sectional Survey to Estimate the Cat Population and Ownership Profiles in a Semirural Area of Central Italy

    PubMed Central

    Iacoponi, Francesca; Scaramozzino, Paola

    2016-01-01

    Understanding animal population size and its demographic features is essential to address Public Health policies as well as to provide valuable information to pet industries and veterinary practitioners. Nevertheless, official data on feline population are not available worldwide. In the present study, the owned cat population size, its demographic attributes, and the ownership profiles have been investigated through a face-to-face questionnaire in a semirural area of Central Italy. The human : cat ratio was equal to 6.8 (95% CI: 5.7–7.5); 29.3% of households own at least one cat. The majority of cats were living in a rural area (67.8%) and outdoors, were neutered (70.5%), and were fed with commercial food (54.8%) and they visited a veterinarian 1-2 times a year (43.3%). The cat ownership was strongly associated with people living in a rural area and owning another pet. As the cat owned population was mainly kept outdoors in rural areas, the possible relation between the owned and the stray animals is worthy to be monitored in future researches. Our study revealed that the feline owned population was larger than expected and that social and economic human factors do not influence the cat ownership. Health Authorities and veterinary practitioners should promote responsible ownership to increase the veterinary care, to intensify the official identification, and to properly manage the outdoor lifestyle. PMID:27610373

  8. A Cross-Sectional Survey to Estimate the Cat Population and Ownership Profiles in a Semirural Area of Central Italy.

    PubMed

    Carvelli, Andrea; Iacoponi, Francesca; Scaramozzino, Paola

    2016-01-01

    Understanding animal population size and its demographic features is essential to address Public Health policies as well as to provide valuable information to pet industries and veterinary practitioners. Nevertheless, official data on feline population are not available worldwide. In the present study, the owned cat population size, its demographic attributes, and the ownership profiles have been investigated through a face-to-face questionnaire in a semirural area of Central Italy. The human : cat ratio was equal to 6.8 (95% CI: 5.7-7.5); 29.3% of households own at least one cat. The majority of cats were living in a rural area (67.8%) and outdoors, were neutered (70.5%), and were fed with commercial food (54.8%) and they visited a veterinarian 1-2 times a year (43.3%). The cat ownership was strongly associated with people living in a rural area and owning another pet. As the cat owned population was mainly kept outdoors in rural areas, the possible relation between the owned and the stray animals is worthy to be monitored in future researches. Our study revealed that the feline owned population was larger than expected and that social and economic human factors do not influence the cat ownership. Health Authorities and veterinary practitioners should promote responsible ownership to increase the veterinary care, to intensify the official identification, and to properly manage the outdoor lifestyle. PMID:27610373

  9. Feral swine brucellosis in the United States and prospective genomic techniques for disease epidemiology.

    PubMed

    Leiser, Owen P; Corn, Joseph L; Schmit, Brandon S; Keim, Paul S; Foster, Jeffrey T

    2013-09-27

    Brucellosis is a common infection of feral swine throughout the United States. With the recent expansion of feral swine populations across the country, this disease poses an increasing threat to agriculture and hunters. The standard approach to Brucella surveillance in feral swine has been serological testing, which gives an indication of past exposure and is a rapid method of determining populations where Brucella is present. More in-depth analyses require bacterial isolation to determine the Brucella species and biovar involved. Ultimately, for a comprehensive understanding of Brucella epizootiology in feral swine, incorporation of genotyping assays has become essential. Fortunately, the past decade has given rise to an array of genetic tools for assessing Brucella transmission and dispersal. This review aims to synthesize what is known about brucellosis in feral swine and will cover prospective genomic techniques that may be utilized to develop more complete understanding of the disease and its transmission history. PMID:23548760

  10. Gastrointestinal parasites of cats in Denmark assessed by necropsy and concentration McMaster technique.

    PubMed

    Takeuchi-Storm, N; Mejer, H; Al-Sabi, M N S; Olsen, C S; Thamsborg, S M; Enemark, H L

    2015-12-15

    The large population of feral cats in Denmark may potentially transmit pathogens to household cats and zoonotic parasites to humans. A total of 99 euthanized cats; feral cats (n=92) and household cats with outdoor access (n=7), were collected from March to May 2014 from the Zealand region, Denmark. The sedimentation and counting technique (SCT) was used to isolate helminths and coproscopy was done by concentration McMaster technique (c-McMaster). Overall, 90.1% of the cats were infected and a total of 10 species were recorded by SCT: 5 nematode species: Toxocara cati (84.8%), Ollulanus tricuspis (13.1%), Aonchotheca putorii (7.1%), Paersonema spp. (3.0%), Strongyloides spp. (1.0%); 3 cestodes: Hydatigera taeniaeformis (36.4%), Mesocestoides sp. (3.0%), Dipylidium caninum (1.0%); and 2 trematodes: Cryptocotyle spp. (5.1%) and Pseudamphistomum truncatum (1.0%). O. tricuspis was the second most common gastrointestinal nematode of cats but had the highest intensity of infection. For T. cati, prevalence and worm burden were significantly higher in feral than household cats. No juvenile cats were infected with H. taeniaeformis, and age thus had a significant effect on prevalence and worm burdens of this species. Rural cats had a higher prevalence and worm burden of A. putorii than urban cats. By c-McMaster, ascarid, capillarid, strongylid or taeniid type eggs were found in 77.9% of the cats while Cystoisospora felis was found in 2.1%. The sensitivity of the c-McMaster was 82.5% for T. cati but 26.5% for taeniid eggs, using the SCT as gold standard. A positive correlation between faecal egg counts and worm burdens was seen for T. cati, but not for taeniid eggs (assumed to be H. taeniaeformis). Coprological examination also detected the eggs of extraintestinal Capillariidae species including Eucoleus aerophilus and Eucoleus boehmi, but further necropsy studies are needed to confirm these findings. PMID:26169220

  11. Serosurvey of leptospirosis in feral hogs (Sus scrofa) in Florida.

    PubMed

    Chatfield, Jenifer; Milleson, Michael; Stoddard, Robyn; Bui, Duy M; Galloway, Renee

    2013-06-01

    Leptospira is a global pathogen of emerging public health importance in both developing and industrialized nations and can infect almost all mammalian species, including humans. As suburbanization and the popularity of outdoor recreational activities increases, so do human-wildlife and companion animal-wildlife interfaces. Florida offers a tropical climate favorable for outdoor activities and a semirural landscape that sustains an abundant feral hog population. Because no survey ofleptospirosis in feral hogs (Sus scrofa) in Florida has been published to our knowledge, we sought to establish preliminary seroprevalence ofleptospirosis exposure in feral hogs in Florida. Blood samples were collected opportunistically from 158 male and 166 female feral hogs taken at managed hunts and by permitted trappers in the northern, central, and southern regions of Florida. Samples were then analyzed using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for antibody titers to 20 Leptospira serovars representing 17 serogroups. A titer of > 1:100 was considered positive; 33% (107/324 total samples) were positive to at least one serovar, and 46% of those were positive to multiple serovars. Antibodies to L. interrogans serovar Bratislava strain Jez Bratislava (serogroup Australis) was the most common, with 18% (58/324) testing positive for antibodies. These initial data indicate that there is a significant possibility of feral hogs having a larger role in the complex etiology of leptospirosis in Florida than historically estimated and that further investigation is warranted. PMID:23805559

  12. Efficacy of nicarbazin (Ovistop®) in the containment and reduction of the populations of feral pigeons (Columba livia var. domestica) in the city of Genoa, Italy: a retrospective evaluation.

    PubMed

    Albonetti, Paolo; Marletta, Antonio; Repetto, Ivano; Sasso, Emanuela Assunta

    2015-01-01

    This study describes the results of a retrospective evaluation (8 years: 2005-2012) of the efficacy of the anti-fertility drug, Ovistop® nicarbazin (800 ppm) added to corn kernels used to feed non-migratory feral pigeon colonies, Columba livia var. domestica, in the city of Genoa, Italy. The observation interested 4 non-migratory feral pigeon colonies located into well‑defined areas of the city of Genoa, Italy. Three of these colonies were treated for 12 months, with 10 g of drug (Ovistop®) provided per bird per day for 5 days each week; the other colony was treated in the same way but with a placebo (control station). Each colony and the relative area where the colony was located were both monitored with the same daily examination. Statistical analysis techniques were applied to the findings recorded - both descriptive (indices of central and dispersion trends) and comparative (one-way variance analysis). In the colonies treated with the drug, following an initial increase in the population ('magnet effect'), a reduction was observed over the following 4 years (-35% >x> -45%) and a further decrease (-65% >x> -70%) was observed over the subsequent 4 years (statistically significant one-way ANOVA p<0.01). This phenomenon was recorded across the board in the 3 treated stations, compared to the overall unstable trend observed for the control station. As no external or exceptional anthropic or natural factors were observed, it can be stated that, given the results observed, the drug seemed effective in reducing the treated bird populations. PMID:25842215

  13. Occurrence of Transgenic Feral Alfalfa (Medicago sativa subsp. sativa L.) in Alfalfa Seed Production Areas in the United States

    PubMed Central

    Greene, Stephanie L.; Kesoju, Sandya R.; Martin, Ruth C.; Kramer, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    The potential environmental risks of transgene exposure are not clear for alfalfa (Medicago sativa subsp. sativa), a perennial crop that is cross-pollinated by insects. We gathered data on feral alfalfa in major alfalfa seed-production areas in the western United States to (1) evaluate evidence that feral transgenic plants spread transgenes and (2) determine environmental and agricultural production factors influencing the location of feral alfalfa, especially transgenic plants. Road verges in Fresno, California; Canyon, Idaho; and Walla Walla, Washington were surveyed in 2011 and 2012 for feral plants, and samples were tested for the CP4 EPSPS protein that conveys resistance to glyphosate. Of 4580 sites surveyed, feral plants were observed at 404 sites. Twenty-seven percent of these sites had transgenic plants. The frequency of sites having transgenic feral plants varied among our study areas. Transgenic plants were found in 32.7%, 21.4.7% and 8.3% of feral plant sites in Fresno, Canyon and Walla Walla, respectively. Spatial analysis suggested that feral populations started independently and tended to cluster in seed and hay production areas, places where seed tended to drop. Significant but low spatial auto correlation suggested that in some instances, plants colonized nearby locations. Neighboring feral plants were frequently within pollinator foraging range; however, further research is needed to confirm transgene flow. Locations of feral plant clusters were not well predicted by environmental and production variables. However, the likelihood of seed spillage during production and transport had predictive value in explaining the occurrence of transgenic feral populations. Our study confirms that genetically engineered alfalfa has dispersed into the environment, and suggests that minimizing seed spillage and eradicating feral alfalfa along road sides would be effective strategies to minimize transgene dispersal. PMID:26699337

  14. Bait Preference of Free-Ranging Feral Swine for Delivery of a Novel Toxicant

    PubMed Central

    Snow, Nathan P.; Halseth, Joseph M.; Lavelle, Michael J.; Hanson, Thomas E.; Blass, Chad R.; Foster, Justin A.; Humphrys, Simon T.; Staples, Linton D.; Hewitt, David G.; VerCauteren, Kurt C.

    2016-01-01

    Invasive feral swine (Sus scrofa) cause extensive damage to agricultural and wildlife resources throughout the United States. Development of sodium nitrite as a new, orally delivered toxicant is underway to provide an additional tool to curtail growth and expansion of feral swine populations. A micro-encapsulation coating around sodium nitrite is used to minimize detection by feral swine and maximize stability for the reactive molecule. To maximize uptake of this toxicant by feral swine, development a bait matrix is needed to 1) protect the micro-encapsulation coating so that sodium nitrite remains undetectable to feral swine, 2) achieve a high degree of acceptance by feral swine, and 3) be minimally appealing to non-target species. With these purposes, a field evaluation at 88 sites in south-central Texas was conducted using remote cameras to evaluate preferences by feral swine for several oil-based bait matrices including uncolored peanut paste, black-colored peanut paste, and peanut-based slurry mixed onto whole-kernel corn. These placebo baits were compared to a reference food, whole-kernel corn, known to be readily taken by feral swine (i.e., control). The amount of bait consumed by feral swine was also estimated using remote cameras and grid boards at 5 additional sites. On initial exposure, feral swine showed reduced visitations to the uncolored peanut paste and peanut slurry treatments. This reduced visitation subsided by the end of the treatment period, suggesting that feral swine needed time to accept these bait types. The black-colored peanut paste was visited equally to the control throughout the study, and enough of this matrix was consumed to deliver lethal doses of micro-encapsulated sodium nitrite to most feral swine during 1–2 feeding events. None of the treatment matrices reduced visitations by nontarget species, but feral swine dominated visitations for all matrices. It was concluded that black-colored peanut paste achieved satisfactory

  15. Bait Preference of Free-Ranging Feral Swine for Delivery of a Novel Toxicant.

    PubMed

    Snow, Nathan P; Halseth, Joseph M; Lavelle, Michael J; Hanson, Thomas E; Blass, Chad R; Foster, Justin A; Humphrys, Simon T; Staples, Linton D; Hewitt, David G; VerCauteren, Kurt C

    2016-01-01

    Invasive feral swine (Sus scrofa) cause extensive damage to agricultural and wildlife resources throughout the United States. Development of sodium nitrite as a new, orally delivered toxicant is underway to provide an additional tool to curtail growth and expansion of feral swine populations. A micro-encapsulation coating around sodium nitrite is used to minimize detection by feral swine and maximize stability for the reactive molecule. To maximize uptake of this toxicant by feral swine, development a bait matrix is needed to 1) protect the micro-encapsulation coating so that sodium nitrite remains undetectable to feral swine, 2) achieve a high degree of acceptance by feral swine, and 3) be minimally appealing to non-target species. With these purposes, a field evaluation at 88 sites in south-central Texas was conducted using remote cameras to evaluate preferences by feral swine for several oil-based bait matrices including uncolored peanut paste, black-colored peanut paste, and peanut-based slurry mixed onto whole-kernel corn. These placebo baits were compared to a reference food, whole-kernel corn, known to be readily taken by feral swine (i.e., control). The amount of bait consumed by feral swine was also estimated using remote cameras and grid boards at 5 additional sites. On initial exposure, feral swine showed reduced visitations to the uncolored peanut paste and peanut slurry treatments. This reduced visitation subsided by the end of the treatment period, suggesting that feral swine needed time to accept these bait types. The black-colored peanut paste was visited equally to the control throughout the study, and enough of this matrix was consumed to deliver lethal doses of micro-encapsulated sodium nitrite to most feral swine during 1-2 feeding events. None of the treatment matrices reduced visitations by nontarget species, but feral swine dominated visitations for all matrices. It was concluded that black-colored peanut paste achieved satisfactory

  16. 50 CFR 30.12 - Disposition of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Disposition of feral animals. 30.12... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.12 Disposition of feral animals. Feral animals taken on wildlife refuge areas may be disposed of by sale on...

  17. 50 CFR 30.12 - Disposition of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Disposition of feral animals. 30.12... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.12 Disposition of feral animals. Feral animals taken on wildlife refuge areas may be disposed of by sale on...

  18. 50 CFR 30.11 - Control of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Control of feral animals. 30.11 Section 30... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.11 Control of feral animals. (a) Feral animals, including horses, burros, cattle, swine, sheep,...

  19. 50 CFR 30.12 - Disposition of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Disposition of feral animals. 30.12... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.12 Disposition of feral animals. Feral animals taken on wildlife refuge areas may be disposed of by sale on...

  20. 50 CFR 30.11 - Control of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Control of feral animals. 30.11 Section 30... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.11 Control of feral animals. (a) Feral animals, including horses, burros, cattle, swine, sheep,...

  1. 50 CFR 30.11 - Control of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Control of feral animals. 30.11 Section 30... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.11 Control of feral animals. (a) Feral animals, including horses, burros, cattle, swine, sheep,...

  2. 50 CFR 30.11 - Control of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Control of feral animals. 30.11 Section 30... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.11 Control of feral animals. (a) Feral animals, including horses, burros, cattle, swine, sheep,...

  3. 50 CFR 30.12 - Disposition of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Disposition of feral animals. 30.12... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.12 Disposition of feral animals. Feral animals taken on wildlife refuge areas may be disposed of by sale on...

  4. 50 CFR 30.11 - Control of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Control of feral animals. 30.11 Section 30... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.11 Control of feral animals. (a) Feral animals, including horses, burros, cattle, swine, sheep,...

  5. 50 CFR 30.12 - Disposition of feral animals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Disposition of feral animals. 30.12... (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM RANGE AND FERAL ANIMAL MANAGEMENT Feral Animals § 30.12 Disposition of feral animals. Feral animals taken on wildlife refuge areas may be disposed of by sale on...

  6. Screening of Feral Pigeon (Colomba livia), Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) and Graylag Goose (Anser anser) Populations for Campylobacter spp., Salmonella spp., Avian Influenza Virus and Avian Paramyxovirus

    PubMed Central

    Lillehaug, A; Jonassen, C Monceyron; Bergsjø, B; Hofshagen, M; Tharaldsen, J; Nesse, LL; Handeland, K

    2005-01-01

    A total of 119 fresh faecal samples were collected from graylag geese migrating northwards in April. Also, cloacal swabs were taken from 100 carcasses of graylag geese shot during the hunting season in August. In addition, samples were taken from 200 feral pigeons and five mallards. The cultivation of bacteria detected Campylobacter jejuni jejuni in six of the pigeons, and in one of the mallards. Salmonella diarizona 14:k:z53 was detected in one graylag goose, while all pigeons and mallards were negative for salmonellae. No avian paramyxovirus was found in any of the samples tested. One mallard, from an Oslo river, was influenza A virus positive, confirmed by RT-PCR and by inoculation of embryonated eggs. The isolate termed A/Duck/Norway/1/03 was found to be of H3N8 type based on sequence analyses of the hemagglutinin and neuraminidase segments, and serological tests. This is the first time an avian influenza virus has been isolated in Norway. The study demonstrates that the wild bird species examined may constitute a reservoir for important bird pathogens and zoonotic agents in Norway. PMID:16398331

  7. Study of the effect on shelter cat intakes and euthanasia from a shelter neuter return project of 10,080 cats from March 2010 to June 2014.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Karen L; Cicirelli, Jon

    2014-01-01

    Cat impoundments were increasing at the municipal San Jose animal shelter in 2009, despite long-term successful low cost sterilization programs and attempts to lower the euthanasia rate of treatable-rehabilitatable impounds beginning in 2008. San Jose Animal Care and Services implemented a new strategy designed to control overall feral cat reproduction by altering and returning feral cats entering the shelter system, rather than euthanizing the cats. The purpose of this case study was to determine how the program affected the shelter cat intakes over time. In just over four years, 10,080 individual healthy adult feral cats, out of 11,423 impounded at the shelter during this time frame, were altered and returned to their site of capture. Included in the 11,423 cats were 862 cats impounded from one to four additional times for a total of 958 (9.5%) recaptures of the previously altered 10,080 cats. The remaining 385 healthy feral cats were euthanized at the shelter from March 2010 to June 2014. Four years into the program, researchers observed cat and kitten impounds decreased 29.1%; euthanasia decreased from over 70% of intakes in 2009, to 23% in 2014. Euthanasia in the shelter for Upper Respiratory Disease decreased 99%; dead cat pick up off the streets declined 20%. Dog impounds did not similarly decline over the four years. No other laws or program changes were implemented since the beginning of the program. PMID:25374785

  8. Study of the effect on shelter cat intakes and euthanasia from a shelter neuter return project of 10,080 cats from March 2010 to June 2014

    PubMed Central

    Cicirelli, Jon

    2014-01-01

    Cat impoundments were increasing at the municipal San Jose animal shelter in 2009, despite long-term successful low cost sterilization programs and attempts to lower the euthanasia rate of treatable-rehabilitatable impounds beginning in 2008. San Jose Animal Care and Services implemented a new strategy designed to control overall feral cat reproduction by altering and returning feral cats entering the shelter system, rather than euthanizing the cats. The purpose of this case study was to determine how the program affected the shelter cat intakes over time. In just over four years, 10,080 individual healthy adult feral cats, out of 11,423 impounded at the shelter during this time frame, were altered and returned to their site of capture. Included in the 11,423 cats were 862 cats impounded from one to four additional times for a total of 958 (9.5%) recaptures of the previously altered 10,080 cats. The remaining 385 healthy feral cats were euthanized at the shelter from March 2010 to June 2014. Four years into the program, researchers observed cat and kitten impounds decreased 29.1%; euthanasia decreased from over 70% of intakes in 2009, to 23% in 2014. Euthanasia in the shelter for Upper Respiratory Disease decreased 99%; dead cat pick up off the streets declined 20%. Dog impounds did not similarly decline over the four years. No other laws or program changes were implemented since the beginning of the program. PMID:25374785

  9. Application of assisted reproduction for population management in felids: the potential and reality for conservation of small cats.

    PubMed

    Swanson, William F

    2006-07-01

    Assisted reproductive technology (ART), using the primary applied tools of AI, ET, and sperm and embryo cryopreservation, has been promoted over the past decades for its potential to conserve endangered wildlife, including felids. However, if the goal is efficient, consistent production of viable offspring for population management, then the 'potential' of ART has yet to become 'reality' for any non-domestic cat species. For the five small-sized felids (i.e., Brazilian ocelot, fishing cat, Pallas' cat, Arabian sand cat, black-footed cat) managed by Species Survival Plans (SSPs) in North American zoos, achieving this potential may be an absolute necessity if genetically viable captive populations are to be maintained into the next century. Modeling programs suggest that current SSP populations are not sustainable without periodic introduction of new founders and improved demographic parameters, including longer generation intervals and larger population sizes. ART provides the means to address each of these management challenges. In each small cat SSP species, fecal hormone metabolite assays and seminal analysis have proven useful for characterizing basal reproductive parameters, a necessary prerequisite to developing ART. Of the five SSP species, ART has been used to produce living offspring only in the ocelot, including after AI with frozen-thawed spermatozoa and following transfer of frozen-thawed IVF embryos. The true efficacy of these techniques, however, is still unknown. To improve the applicability of ART for population management, priorities for immediate research include further investigation of ovarian stimulation protocols, sperm and embryo cryopreservation methods, embryo culture systems, and fetal and neonatal viability following ART. PMID:16650889

  10. Folliculogenesis in the domestic cat (Felis catus).

    PubMed

    Bristol-Gould, Sarah; Woodruff, Teresa K

    2006-07-01

    The dynamic regulation of mammalian folliculogenesis is a key component of the reproductive process. Traditionally, the rodent had been used as a model to study ovarian function and reproductive physiology due to the availability of animals, their relatively short cycle length, high rate of fecundity and short generation interval. We maintain that much basic information can be determined using domestic cat ovaries retrieved from local veterinary clinics following routine spaying, without having the expense of maintaining a colony of laboratory cats. Studies of normal feline reproductive physiology and advances in reproductive technology may be extrapolated for use in endangered non-domestic felids. Increased understanding of feline reproduction will be beneficial to veterinary medicine, and to groups working to control feral cat populations. It is important to examine reproductive mechanisms in alternative animal models as there are a vast number of threatened and endangered species in which we lack the critical reproductive information needed to assist in preserving their long-term survival. PMID:16620931

  11. Feral Hogs Management at Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge: Analysis of Current Management Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosenfeld, Arie; Hinkle, C. Ross; Epstein, Marc

    2002-01-01

    This ST1 Technical Memorandum (TM) summarizes a two-month project on feral hog management in Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR). For this project, feral hogs were marked and recaptured, with the help of local trappers, to estimate population size and habitat preferences. Habitat covers included vegetation cover and Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) data for MINWR. In addition, an analysis was done of hunting records compiled by the Refuge and hog-car accidents compiled by KSC Security.

  12. The First Estimates of Marbled Cat Pardofelis marmorata Population Density from Bornean Primary and Selectively Logged Forest

    PubMed Central

    Hearn, Andrew J.; Ross, Joanna; Bernard, Henry; Bakar, Soffian Abu; Hunter, Luke T. B.; Macdonald, David W.

    2016-01-01

    The marbled cat Pardofelis marmorata is a poorly known wild cat that has a broad distribution across much of the Indomalayan ecorealm. This felid is thought to exist at low population densities throughout its range, yet no estimates of its abundance exist, hampering assessment of its conservation status. To investigate the distribution and abundance of marbled cats we conducted intensive, felid-focused camera trap surveys of eight forest areas and two oil palm plantations in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Study sites were broadly representative of the range of habitat types and the gradient of anthropogenic disturbance and fragmentation present in contemporary Sabah. We recorded marbled cats from all forest study areas apart from a small, relatively isolated forest patch, although photographic detection frequency varied greatly between areas. No marbled cats were recorded within the plantations, but a single individual was recorded walking along the forest/plantation boundary. We collected sufficient numbers of marbled cat photographic captures at three study areas to permit density estimation based on spatially explicit capture-recapture analyses. Estimates of population density from the primary, lowland Danum Valley Conservation Area and primary upland, Tawau Hills Park, were 19.57 (SD: 8.36) and 7.10 (SD: 1.90) individuals per 100 km2, respectively, and the selectively logged, lowland Tabin Wildlife Reserve yielded an estimated density of 10.45 (SD: 3.38) individuals per 100 km2. The low detection frequencies recorded in our other survey sites and from published studies elsewhere in its range, and the absence of previous density estimates for this felid suggest that our density estimates may be from the higher end of their abundance spectrum. We provide recommendations for future marbled cat survey approaches. PMID:27007219

  13. The First Estimates of Marbled Cat Pardofelis marmorata Population Density from Bornean Primary and Selectively Logged Forest.

    PubMed

    Hearn, Andrew J; Ross, Joanna; Bernard, Henry; Bakar, Soffian Abu; Hunter, Luke T B; Macdonald, David W

    2016-01-01

    The marbled cat Pardofelis marmorata is a poorly known wild cat that has a broad distribution across much of the Indomalayan ecorealm. This felid is thought to exist at low population densities throughout its range, yet no estimates of its abundance exist, hampering assessment of its conservation status. To investigate the distribution and abundance of marbled cats we conducted intensive, felid-focused camera trap surveys of eight forest areas and two oil palm plantations in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Study sites were broadly representative of the range of habitat types and the gradient of anthropogenic disturbance and fragmentation present in contemporary Sabah. We recorded marbled cats from all forest study areas apart from a small, relatively isolated forest patch, although photographic detection frequency varied greatly between areas. No marbled cats were recorded within the plantations, but a single individual was recorded walking along the forest/plantation boundary. We collected sufficient numbers of marbled cat photographic captures at three study areas to permit density estimation based on spatially explicit capture-recapture analyses. Estimates of population density from the primary, lowland Danum Valley Conservation Area and primary upland, Tawau Hills Park, were 19.57 (SD: 8.36) and 7.10 (SD: 1.90) individuals per 100 km2, respectively, and the selectively logged, lowland Tabin Wildlife Reserve yielded an estimated density of 10.45 (SD: 3.38) individuals per 100 km2. The low detection frequencies recorded in our other survey sites and from published studies elsewhere in its range, and the absence of previous density estimates for this felid suggest that our density estimates may be from the higher end of their abundance spectrum. We provide recommendations for future marbled cat survey approaches. PMID:27007219

  14. Population spatiotemporal dynamics of spinal intermediate zone interneurons during air-stepping in adult spinal cats

    PubMed Central

    AuYong, Nicholas; Ollivier-Lanvin, Karen

    2011-01-01

    The lumbar spinal cord circuitry can autonomously generate locomotion, but it remains to be determined which types of neurons constitute the locomotor generator and how their population activity is organized spatially in the mammalian spinal cord. In this study, we investigated the spatiotemporal dynamics of the spinal interneuronal population activity in the intermediate zone of the adult mammalian cord. Segmental interneuronal population activity was examined via multiunit activity (MUA) during air-stepping initiated by perineal stimulation in subchronic spinal cats. In contrast to single-unit activity, MUA provides a continuous measure of neuronal activity within a ∼100-μm volume around the recording electrode. MUA was recorded during air-stepping, along with hindlimb muscle activity, from segments L3 to L7 with two multichannel electrode arrays placed into the left and right hemicord intermediate zones (lamina V–VII). The phasic modulation and spatial organization of MUA dynamics were examined in relation to the locomotor cycle. Our results show that segmental population activity is modulated with respect to the ipsilateral step cycle during air-stepping, with maximal activity occurring near the ipsilateral swing to stance transition period. The phase difference between the population activity within the left and right hemicords was also found to correlate to the left-right alternation of the step cycle. Furthermore, examination of MUA throughout the rostrocaudal extent showed no differences in population dynamics between segmental levels, suggesting that the spinal interneurons targeted in this study may operate as part of a distributed “clock” mechanism rather than a rostrocaudal oscillation as seen with motoneuronal activity. PMID:21775722

  15. Pathogen presence in feral pigs and their movement around two commercial piggeries in Queensland, Australia.

    PubMed

    Pearson, H E; Toribio, J-A L M L; Hernandez-Jover, M; Marshall, D; Lapidge, S J

    2014-03-29

    Feral pigs are wild animal reservoirs of infectious pathogens transmissible to other species, all of which are transmissible to domestic pigs. The objective of this study was to detect the presence of harmful production-limiting pathogens; Brucella suis, Leptospira species, Lawsonia intracellularis, Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae in a feral pig population within a 10 km radius of two large-scale commercial piggeries in Southern Queensland, Australia. The movement pattern of six pigs within the feral population was also investigated using geographic positioning system collars. All pathogens were present in the feral pig population except for A pleuropneumoniae. The true seroprevalence (TP) from 83 serum samples was 10.5 per cent for B suis, 48.6 per cent for Leptospira species, 100 per cent for L intracellularis and 42.1 per cent for M hyopneumoniae. Of 72 lung samples, 27.6 per cent were positive for M hyopneumoniae. Serum samples from 86 domestic sows within the study region were positive for Leptospira species (TP 2.1 per cent), L intracellularis (TP 100 per cent) and M hyopneumoniae (TP 100 per cent). The majority of feral pig movement was within 5 km of the piggeries, with one approaching to 100 m of the free-range piggery. The presence of pathogens in feral pigs in such close proximity to commercial piggeries could pose a biosecurity risk. PMID:24572722

  16. Isolation of Campylobacter from feral swine (Sus scrofa) on the ranch associated with the 2006 Escherichia coli O157:H7 spinach outbreak investigation in California

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We report the isolation of Campylobacter species from the same population of feral swine that was investigated in San Benito County, California during the 2006 spinach-related Escherichia coli O157:H7 outbreak. This is the first survey of Campylobacter in a free-ranging feral swine population in the...

  17. A Glance at Recombination Hotspots in the Domestic Cat.

    PubMed

    Alhaddad, Hasan; Zhang, Chi; Rannala, Bruce; Lyons, Leslie A

    2016-01-01

    Recombination has essential roles in increasing genetic variability within a population and in ensuring successful meiotic events. The objective of this study is to (i) infer the population-scaled recombination rate (ρ), and (ii) identify and characterize regions of increased recombination rate for the domestic cat, Felis silvestris catus. SNPs (n = 701) were genotyped in twenty-two East Asian feral cats (random bred). The SNPs covered ten different chromosomal regions (A1, A2, B3, C2, D1, D2, D4, E2, F2, X) with an average region size of 850 Kb and an average SNP density of 70 SNPs/region. The Bayesian method in the program inferRho was used to infer regional population recombination rates and hotspots localities. The regions exhibited variable population recombination rates and four decisive recombination hotspots were identified on cat chromosome A2, D1, and E2 regions. As a description of the identified hotspots, no correlation was detected between the GC content and the locality of recombination spots, and the hotspots enclosed L2 LINE elements and MIR and tRNA-Lys SINE elements. PMID:26859385

  18. A Glance at Recombination Hotspots in the Domestic Cat

    PubMed Central

    Alhaddad, Hasan; Zhang, Chi; Rannala, Bruce; Lyons, Leslie A.

    2016-01-01

    Recombination has essential roles in increasing genetic variability within a population and in ensuring successful meiotic events. The objective of this study is to (i) infer the population-scaled recombination rate (ρ), and (ii) identify and characterize regions of increased recombination rate for the domestic cat, Felis silvestris catus. SNPs (n = 701) were genotyped in twenty-two East Asian feral cats (random bred). The SNPs covered ten different chromosomal regions (A1, A2, B3, C2, D1, D2, D4, E2, F2, X) with an average region size of 850 Kb and an average SNP density of 70 SNPs/region. The Bayesian method in the program inferRho was used to infer regional population recombination rates and hotspots localities. The regions exhibited variable population recombination rates and four decisive recombination hotspots were identified on cat chromosome A2, D1, and E2 regions. As a description of the identified hotspots, no correlation was detected between the GC content and the locality of recombination spots, and the hotspots enclosed L2 LINE elements and MIR and tRNA-Lys SINE elements. PMID:26859385

  19. Mitochondrial DNA diversity of feral pigs from Karukinka Natural Park, Tierra del Fuego Island, Chile.

    PubMed

    Aravena, P; Skewes, O; Gouin, N

    2015-01-01

    Control or eradication of exotic species is one of the greatest challenges facing biodiversity and ecosystem conservation. Domestic pigs (Sus scrofa domestica) were released and became feral in the southern region of Chilean Tierra del Fuego Island in the 1900s. Currently, they inhabit part of Karukinka Natural Park, an area of global conservation concern. To gain insight into the control of this invasive species, we analyzed genetic variation in the mitochondrial DNA control region to determine the origin and population subdivision of feral pigs in Tierra del Fuego. Sequences from a sample of 42 feral pigs, 10 domestic pigs from local farms, and references from other countries and commercial breeds revealed 2 highly differentiated populations, 1 in the western and the other in the eastern area of the park, each harboring a different haplotype, suggesting no connectivity between populations. Comparison of these haplotypes with reference sequences from other countries and commercial breeds indicated that feral pigs from Chilean Tierra del Fuego are of European origin, very likely from 2 separate introduction events. The haplotype found in the western feral population was also identified in domestic pigs from a farm. This raises concerns regarding the possible connectivity between stocks from local farms and the wild population. Based on these results, we recommend the development of strategies for controlling the population of this invasive species in Karukinka Natural Park. PMID:25966196

  20. Bartonella and Toxoplasma Infections in Stray Cats from Iraq

    PubMed Central

    Switzer, Alexandra D.; McMillan-Cole, Audrey C.; Kasten, Rickie W.; Stuckey, Matthew J.; Kass, Philip H.; Chomel, Bruno B.

    2013-01-01

    Because of overpopulation, stray/feral cats were captured on military bases in Iraq as part of the US Army Zoonotic Disease Surveillance Program. Blood samples were collected from 207 cats, mainly in Baghdad but also in North and West Iraq, to determine the prevalence of Bartonella and Toxoplasma infections. Nine (4.3%) cats, all from Baghdad, were bacteremic with B. henselae type I. Seroprevalence was 30.4% for T. gondii, 15% for B. henselae, and 12.6% for B. clarridgeiae. Differences in Bartonella prevalence by location were statistically significant, because most of the seropositive cats were from Baghdad. There was no association between T. gondii seropositivity and either of the two Bartonella species surveyed. This report is the first report on the prevalence of Bartonella and T. gondii among stray cats in Iraq, which allows for better evaluation of the zoonotic risk potential to the Iraqi people and deployed military personnel by feral cat colonies. PMID:24062480

  1. Bartonella and Toxoplasma infections in stray cats from Iraq.

    PubMed

    Switzer, Alexandra D; McMillan-Cole, Audrey C; Kasten, Rickie W; Stuckey, Matthew J; Kass, Philip H; Chomel, Bruno B

    2013-12-01

    Because of overpopulation, stray/feral cats were captured on military bases in Iraq as part of the US Army Zoonotic Disease Surveillance Program. Blood samples were collected from 207 cats, mainly in Baghdad but also in North and West Iraq, to determine the prevalence of Bartonella and Toxoplasma infections. Nine (4.3%) cats, all from Baghdad, were bacteremic with B. henselae type I. Seroprevalence was 30.4% for T. gondii, 15% for B. henselae, and 12.6% for B. clarridgeiae. Differences in Bartonella prevalence by location were statistically significant, because most of the seropositive cats were from Baghdad. There was no association between T. gondii seropositivity and either of the two Bartonella species surveyed. This report is the first report on the prevalence of Bartonella and T. gondii among stray cats in Iraq, which allows for better evaluation of the zoonotic risk potential to the Iraqi people and deployed military personnel by feral cat colonies. PMID:24062480

  2. Apparent rates of increase for two feral horse herds

    SciTech Connect

    Eberhardt, L.L.; Majorowicz, A.K.; Wilcox, J.A.

    1982-01-01

    Rates of increase for 2 Oregon feral horse (Equus caballus) herds were estimated from direct aerial counts to be about 20% per year. These rates can be achieved only if survival rates are high, and reproduction exceeds that normally expected from horses. A population dynamics model suggests adult survival to be the key parameter in determining rates of increase, and there is some direct evidence of high adult survival rates. Management implications are discussed.

  3. Dynamics of virus shedding and antibody responses in influenza A virus-infected feral swine.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hailiang; Cunningham, Fred L; Harris, Jillian; Xu, Yifei; Long, Li-Ping; Hanson-Dorr, Katie; Baroch, John A; Fioranelli, Paul; Lutman, Mark W; Li, Tao; Pedersen, Kerri; Schmit, Brandon S; Cooley, Jim; Lin, Xiaoxu; Jarman, Richard G; DeLiberto, Thomas J; Wan, Xiu-Feng

    2015-09-01

    Given their free-ranging habits, feral swine could serve as reservoirs or spatially dynamic 'mixing vessels' for influenza A virus (IAV). To better understand virus shedding patterns and antibody response dynamics in the context of IAV surveillance amongst feral swine, we used IAV of feral swine origin to perform infection experiments. The virus was highly infectious and transmissible in feral swine, and virus shedding patterns and antibody response dynamics were similar to those in domestic swine. In the virus-inoculated and sentinel groups, virus shedding lasted ≤ 6 and ≤ 9 days, respectively. Antibody titres in inoculated swine peaked at 1 : 840 on day 11 post-inoculation (p.i.), remained there until 21 days p.i. and dropped to < 1 : 220 at 42 days p.i. Genomic sequencing identified changes in wildtype (WT) viruses and isolates from sentinel swine, most notably an amino acid divergence in nucleoprotein position 473. Using data from cell culture as a benchmark, sensitivity and specificity of a matrix gene-based quantitative reverse transcription-PCR method using nasal swab samples for detection of IAV in feral swine were 78.9 and 78.1 %, respectively. Using data from haemagglutination inhibition assays as a benchmark, sensitivity and specificity of an ELISA for detection of IAV-specific antibody were 95.4 and 95.0 %, respectively. Serological surveillance from 2009 to 2014 showed that ∼7.58 % of feral swine in the USA were positive for IAV. Our findings confirm the susceptibility of IAV infection and the high transmission ability of IAV amongst feral swine, and also suggest the need for continued surveillance of IAVs in feral swine populations. PMID:26297148

  4. Touchdown polymerase chain reaction detection of polycystic kidney disease and laboratory findings in different cat populations.

    PubMed

    Scalon, Marcela C; da Silva, Thamiris F; Aquino, Larissa C; Carneiro, Filipe T; Lima, Maíra G da M; Lemos, Marcelle Dos S; Paludo, Giane R

    2014-06-10

    Autosomal-dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) is the most prevalent inherited genetic disease of cats, predominantly affecting Persian and Persian-related cats. A point mutation (C→A transversion) in exon 29 of the PKD1 gene causes ADPKD, and is the specific molecular target for genetic diagnosis in cats. The current study describes a newly developed touchdown polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to detect this single point mutation, using 2 primers specific for the mutant allele, adapted from an existing multiplex amplification refractory mutation system (ARMS PCR). Furthermore, correlations between the clinical outcomes of tested animals and the results of the genetic test were investigated. A total of 334 cats were tested, 188 from the Veterinary Hospital of Small Animals at the University of Brasilia, and 146 from an anti-rabies vaccine campaign of the Federal District. A total prevalence of 9% was evident among the samples, with 33% of the Persian cats testing positive, and 7% of the Brazilian long- and shorthaired cats testing positive. Prevalence was not correlated with gender or hemogram. Positive animals exhibited hyperglobulinemia (P = 0.02). This research demonstrated that the mutation does not only occur in Persian and Persian-related cats, and that a touchdown PCR can be used to diagnose ADPKD. PMID:24916445

  5. Quantifying Equid Behavior - A Research Ethogram for Free-Roaming Feral Horses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, Jason I.; Cade, Brian S.

    2009-01-01

    Feral horses (Equus caballus) are globally distributed in free-roaming populations on all continents except Antarctica and occupy a wide range of habitats including forest, grassland, desert, and montane environments. The largest populations occur in Australia and North America and have been the subject of scientific study for decades, yet guidelines and ethograms for feral horse behavioral research are largely absent in the scientific literature. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Fort Collins Science Center conducted research on the influences of the immunocontraceptive porcine zona pellucida (PZP) on feral horse behavior from 2003-2006 in three discrete populations in the American west. These populations were the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Range in Colorado, McCullough Peaks Herd Management Area in Wyoming, and Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range in Montana; the research effort included over 1,800 hours of behavioral observations of 317 adult free-roaming feral horses. An ethogram was developed during the course of this study to facilitate accurate scientific data collection on feral horse behavior, which is often challenging to quantify. By developing this set of discrete behavioral definitions and a set of strict research protocols, scientists were better able to address both applied questions, such as behavioral changes related to fertility control, and theoretical questions, such as understanding networks and dominance hierarchies within social groups of equids.

  6. Cats protecting birds revisited.

    PubMed

    Fan, Meng; Kuang, Yang; Feng, Zhilan

    2005-09-01

    In this paper, we revisit the dynamical interaction among prey (bird), mesopredator (rat), and superpredator (cat) discussed in [Courchamp, F., Langlais, M., Sugihara, G., 1999. Cats protecting birds: modelling the mesopredator release effect. Journal of Animal Ecology 68, 282-292]. First, we develop a prey-mesopredator-superpredator (i.e., bird-rat-cat, briefly, BRC) model, where the predator's functional responses are derived based on the classical Holling's time budget arguments. Our BRC model overcomes several model construction problems in Courchamp et al. (1999), and admits richer, reasonable and realistic dynamics. We explore the possible control strategies to save or restore the bird by controlling or eliminating the rat or the cat when the bird is endangered. We establish the existence of two types of mesopredator release phenomena: severe mesopredator release, where once superpredators are suppressed, a burst of mesopredators follows which leads their shared prey to extinction; and mild mesopredator release, where the mesopredator release could assert more negative impact on the endemic prey but does not lead the endemic prey to extinction. A sharp sufficient criterion is established for the occurrence of severe mesopredator release. We also show that, in a prey-mesopredator-superpredator trophic food web, eradication of introduced superpredators such as feral domestic cats in the BRC model, is not always the best solution to protect endemic insular prey. The presence of a superpredator may have a beneficial effect in such systems. PMID:15998496

  7. Treatment with Suprelorin in a pregnant cat.

    PubMed

    Goericke-Pesch, Sandra; Georgiev, Plamen; Atanasov, Anatoli; Wehrend, Axel

    2013-04-01

    Suppression of oestrus is of major interest in feral cat populations, but also in breeding queens temporarily not intended for breeding. Slow release gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist implants are a new off-label approach for reproduction control in cats. However, initially, oestrus induction may occur and no data exist regarding what happens if previously mated queens are treated. This case report presents a queen mismated 9 and 8 days before treatment with a 4.7 mg deslorelin implant. The queen delivered four healthy kittens 66 days after mismating, but showed no interest in the kittens and lactation was not adequate. Progesterone and oestradiol concentrations were monitored and the queen was followed until the return of oestrus and subsequent breeding. The next oestrus was observed 498 days after treatment and the queen was mated in the second oestrus afterwards, became pregnant and delivered two healthy kittens, both of which were raised successfully by the queen. This case report clearly shows that pregnancy following a GnRH-agonist implant may go to term, but maternal care might be influenced owing to hormonal changes induced by treatment. In addition, this is the first report demonstrating reversibility of effects induced by long-term treatment with a deslorelin implant (return to oestrus, fertility and normal maternal care). PMID:23186637

  8. A comparative study on the effects of tylosin on select bacteria during continuous-flow culture of mixed populations of gut microflora derived from a feral and a domestic pig

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Continuous flow cultures of feral (culture FC) and domesticated (culture RPCF) pig gut microflora were established in steady state. Cultures, in duplicate, were continuously infused subtherapeutic (25 ug/ml) levels of tylosin and sampled at intervals to assess effects on total culturable anaerobes, ...

  9. Feral livestock threatens landscapes dominated by columnar cacti

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malo, J. E.; Acebes, P.; Giannoni, S. M.; Traba, J.

    2011-05-01

    The introduction and naturalization of alien species represents a serious threat to many natural protected areas. One such case of worldwide concern is the impact of feral livestock on arid ecosystems. Damage suffered by Echinopsis (= Trichocereus) terscheckii dominating the landscape of rocky slopes was surveyed in seven locations within the Ischigualasto-Talampaya World Heritage Site (Argentina) by measuring the frequency, position on the plant and extent of damage. At the same time we employed transects to estimate the abundance of autochtonous and feral large herbivores ( Lama guanicoe, Bos taurus, Equus asinus) from their dung. Our results show relatively high damage levels (40-77% of individuals damaged, more than 5 dm 3 removed by plant in some sites), particularly within 0.50-1.75 m above the ground, showing herbivores to be the main responsible for them. We also found significant differences between sites in variables measuring damage level and in the intensity of use by the two feral livestock species but not by guanacos. The frequency of damaged cacti below 1.75 m (but not above) was significantly positively correlated among locations with the frequencies of cattle and donkey dung, and the damage suffered by individual cacti was also correlated with donkey and cattle dung in their surroundings after correcting for spatial effects. However, all correlations were non-significant in the case of guanacos. We conclude that the continued presence of feral livestock, particularly donkeys, leads to damages to columnar cacti with potential effects on their populations and the physiognomy of this protected landscape.

  10. Chlortetracycline - resistant intestinal bacteria in organically-raised and feral swine

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Organically-raised swine had high fecal populations of chlortetracycline (CTC)-resistant (growing at 64 micro g CTC/ml) Escherichia coli, Megasphaera elsdenii and anaerobe populations. By comparison, predominant CTC-resistant bacteria in feral swine feces were over 1000-fold fewer and exhibited lo...

  11. Effect of experimental manipulation on survival and recruitment of feral pigs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hanson, L.B.; Mitchell, M.S.; Grand, J.B.; Jolley, D.B.; Sparklin, B.D.; Ditchkoff, S.S.

    2009-01-01

    Lethal removal is commonly used to reduce the density of invasive-species populations, presuming it reduces population growth rate; the actual effect of lethal removal on the vital rates contributing to population growth, however, is rarely tested. We implemented a manipulative experiment of feral pig (Sus scrofa) populations at Fort Benning, Georgia, USA, to assess the demographic effects of harvest intensity. Using markrecapture data, we estimated annual survival, recruitment, and population growth rates of populations in a moderately harvested area and a heavily harvested area for 200406. Population growth rates did not differ between the populations. The top-ranked model for survival included a harvest intensity effect; model-averaged survival was lower for the heavily harvested population than for the moderately harvested population. Increased immigration and reproduction likely compensated for the increased mortality in the heavily harvested population. We conclude that compensatory responses in feral pig recruitment can limit the success of lethal control efforts. ?? 2009 CSIRO.

  12. Beyond the disease: Is Toxoplasma gondii infection causing population declines in the eastern quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus)?

    PubMed

    Fancourt, Bronwyn A; Nicol, Stewart C; Hawkins, Clare E; Jones, Menna E; Johnson, Chris N

    2014-08-01

    Disease is often considered a key threat to species of conservation significance. For some, it has resulted in localised extinctions and declines in range and abundance. However, for some species, the assertion that a disease poses a significant threat of extinction is based solely on correlative or anecdotal evidence, often inferred from individual clinical case reports. While a species' susceptibility to a disease may be demonstrated in a number of individuals, investigations rarely extend to measuring the impact of disease at the population level and its contribution, if any, to population declines. The eastern quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus) is a medium-sized Australian marsupial carnivore that is undergoing severe and rapid decline in Tasmania, its last refuge. Reasons for the decline are currently not understood. Feral cats (Felis catus) may be undergoing competitive release following the ongoing decline of the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii), with cats suppressing eastern quolls through increased predation, competition, exclusion or exposure to diseases such as toxoplasmosis. To investigate the effects of Toxoplasma gondii infection, eastern quoll populations at four sites were regularly screened for the seroprevalence of T. gondii-specific IgG antibodies. Seroprevalence was approximately five times higher at sites with declining quoll populations, and there was a negative association between seroprevalence and quoll abundance. However, T. gondii infection did not reduce quoll survival or reproduction. Despite a high susceptibility to T. gondii infection, eastern quoll populations do not appear to be limited by the parasite or its resultant disease. Significantly higher seroprevalence is a signal of greater exposure to feral cats at sites where eastern quolls are declining, suggesting that increased predation, competition or exclusion by feral cats may be precipitating population declines. PMID:25161908

  13. Beyond the disease: Is Toxoplasma gondii infection causing population declines in the eastern quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus)?

    PubMed Central

    Fancourt, Bronwyn A.; Nicol, Stewart C.; Hawkins, Clare E.; Jones, Menna E.; Johnson, Chris N.

    2014-01-01

    Disease is often considered a key threat to species of conservation significance. For some, it has resulted in localised extinctions and declines in range and abundance. However, for some species, the assertion that a disease poses a significant threat of extinction is based solely on correlative or anecdotal evidence, often inferred from individual clinical case reports. While a species’ susceptibility to a disease may be demonstrated in a number of individuals, investigations rarely extend to measuring the impact of disease at the population level and its contribution, if any, to population declines. The eastern quoll (Dasyurus viverrinus) is a medium-sized Australian marsupial carnivore that is undergoing severe and rapid decline in Tasmania, its last refuge. Reasons for the decline are currently not understood. Feral cats (Felis catus) may be undergoing competitive release following the ongoing decline of the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii), with cats suppressing eastern quolls through increased predation, competition, exclusion or exposure to diseases such as toxoplasmosis. To investigate the effects of Toxoplasma gondii infection, eastern quoll populations at four sites were regularly screened for the seroprevalence of T. gondii-specific IgG antibodies. Seroprevalence was approximately five times higher at sites with declining quoll populations, and there was a negative association between seroprevalence and quoll abundance. However, T. gondii infection did not reduce quoll survival or reproduction. Despite a high susceptibility to T. gondii infection, eastern quoll populations do not appear to be limited by the parasite or its resultant disease. Significantly higher seroprevalence is a signal of greater exposure to feral cats at sites where eastern quolls are declining, suggesting that increased predation, competition or exclusion by feral cats may be precipitating population declines. PMID:25161908

  14. Selecting representative microsatellite loci for genetic monitoring and analyzing genetic structure of an outbred population of orange tabby cats in China.

    PubMed

    Du, X Y; Yi, S; Huo, X Y; Wang, C; Liu, D F; Ren, W Z; Chen, Z W

    2015-01-01

    We optimized a panel of microsatellite markers from cat and tiger genetic data for efficient genetic monitoring and used it to analyze the genetic structure of an outbred cat stock in China. We selected a set of rich polymorphic microsatellite loci from 131 cat microsatellite loci and 3 Sumatran tiger microsatellite loci using agarose gel electrophoresis. Next, the set of optimized genetic markers was used to analyze the genetic variation in an outbred population of orange tabby cats in China by simple-tandem repeat scanning. Thirty-one loci rich in polymorphisms were selected and the highest allele number in a single locus was 8. Analysis of the orange tabby cat population illustrated that the average observed number of alleles, mean effective allele number, mean Shannon's information index, mean expected heterozygosity, and observed heterozygosity were 3.8387, 2.4027, 0.9787, 0.5565, and 0.5528, respectively. The 31 microsatellite markers used were polymorphic and suitable for analyzing the genetic structure of cats. The population of orange tabby cats was confirmed to be a well-outbred stock. PMID:25867323

  15. Mixed ancestry and admixture in Kauai's feral chickens: invasion of domestic genes into ancient Red Junglefowl reservoirs.

    PubMed

    Gering, E; Johnsson, M; Willis, P; Getty, T; Wright, D

    2015-05-01

    A major goal of invasion genetics is to determine how establishment histories shape non-native organisms' genotypes and phenotypes. While domesticated species commonly escape cultivation to invade feral habitats, few studies have examined how this process shapes feral gene pools and traits. We collected genomic and phenotypic data from feral chickens (Gallus gallus) on the Hawaiian island of Kauai to (i) ascertain their origins and (ii) measure standing variation in feral genomes, morphology and behaviour. Mitochondrial phylogenies (D-loop & whole Mt genome) revealed two divergent clades within our samples. The rare clade also contains sequences from Red Junglefowl (the domestic chicken's progenitor) and ancient DNA sequences from Kauai that predate European contact. This lineage appears to have been dispersed into the east Pacific by ancient Polynesian colonists. The more prevalent MtDNA clade occurs worldwide and includes domesticated breeds developed recently in Europe that are farmed within Hawaii. We hypothesize this lineage originates from recently feralized livestock and found supporting evidence for increased G. gallus density on Kauai within the last few decades. SNPs obtained from whole-genome sequencing were consistent with historic admixture between Kauai's divergent (G. gallus) lineages. Additionally, analyses of plumage, skin colour and vocalizations revealed that Kauai birds' behaviours and morphologies overlap with those of domestic chickens and Red Junglefowl, suggesting hybrid origins. Together, our data support the hypotheses that (i) Kauai's feral G. gallus descend from recent invasion(s) of domestic chickens into an ancient Red Junglefowl reservoir and (ii) feral chickens exhibit greater phenotypic diversity than candidate source populations. These findings complicate management objectives for Pacific feral chickens, while highlighting the potential of this and other feral systems for evolutionary studies of invasions. PMID:25655399

  16. Modeling ecological traps for the control of feral pigs.

    PubMed

    Dexter, Nick; McLeod, Steven R

    2015-05-01

    Ecological traps are habitat sinks that are preferred by dispersing animals but have higher mortality or reduced fecundity compared to source habitats. Theory suggests that if mortality rates are sufficiently high, then ecological traps can result in extinction. An ecological trap may be created when pest animals are controlled in one area, but not in another area of equal habitat quality, and when there is density-dependent immigration from the high-density uncontrolled area to the low-density controlled area. We used a logistic population model to explore how varying the proportion of habitat controlled, control mortality rate, and strength of density-dependent immigration for feral pigs could affect the long-term population abundance and time to extinction. Increasing control mortality, the proportion of habitat controlled and the strength of density-dependent immigration decreased abundance both within and outside the area controlled. At higher levels of these parameters, extinction was achieved for feral pigs. We extended the analysis with a more complex stochastic, interactive model of feral pig dynamics in the Australian rangelands to examine how the same variables as the logistic model affected long-term abundance in the controlled and uncontrolled area and time to extinction. Compared to the logistic model of feral pig dynamics, the stochastic interactive model predicted lower abundances and extinction at lower control mortalities and proportions of habitat controlled. To improve the realism of the stochastic interactive model, we substituted fixed mortality rates with a density-dependent control mortality function, empirically derived from helicopter shooting exercises in Australia. Compared to the stochastic interactive model with fixed mortality rates, the model with the density-dependent control mortality function did not predict as substantial decline in abundance in controlled or uncontrolled areas or extinction for any combination of variables

  17. Modeling ecological traps for the control of feral pigs

    PubMed Central

    Dexter, Nick; McLeod, Steven R

    2015-01-01

    Ecological traps are habitat sinks that are preferred by dispersing animals but have higher mortality or reduced fecundity compared to source habitats. Theory suggests that if mortality rates are sufficiently high, then ecological traps can result in extinction. An ecological trap may be created when pest animals are controlled in one area, but not in another area of equal habitat quality, and when there is density-dependent immigration from the high-density uncontrolled area to the low-density controlled area. We used a logistic population model to explore how varying the proportion of habitat controlled, control mortality rate, and strength of density-dependent immigration for feral pigs could affect the long-term population abundance and time to extinction. Increasing control mortality, the proportion of habitat controlled and the strength of density-dependent immigration decreased abundance both within and outside the area controlled. At higher levels of these parameters, extinction was achieved for feral pigs. We extended the analysis with a more complex stochastic, interactive model of feral pig dynamics in the Australian rangelands to examine how the same variables as the logistic model affected long-term abundance in the controlled and uncontrolled area and time to extinction. Compared to the logistic model of feral pig dynamics, the stochastic interactive model predicted lower abundances and extinction at lower control mortalities and proportions of habitat controlled. To improve the realism of the stochastic interactive model, we substituted fixed mortality rates with a density-dependent control mortality function, empirically derived from helicopter shooting exercises in Australia. Compared to the stochastic interactive model with fixed mortality rates, the model with the density-dependent control mortality function did not predict as substantial decline in abundance in controlled or uncontrolled areas or extinction for any combination of variables

  18. Antiviral treatment of feline immunodeficiency virus-infected cats with (R)-9-(2-phosphonylmethoxypropyl)-2,6-diaminopurine.

    PubMed

    Taffin, Elien; Paepe, Dominique; Goris, Nesya; Auwerx, Joeri; Debille, Mariella; Neyts, Johan; Van de Maele, Isabel; Daminet, Sylvie

    2015-02-01

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), the causative agent of an acquired immunodeficiency syndrome in cats (feline AIDS), is a ubiquitous health threat to the domestic and feral cat population, also triggering disease in wild animals. No registered antiviral compounds are currently available to treat FIV-infected cats. Several human antiviral drugs have been used experimentally in cats, but not without the development of serious adverse effects. Here we report on the treatment of six naturally FIV-infected cats, suffering from moderate to severe disease, with the antiretroviral compound (R)-9-(2-phosphonylmethoxypropyl)-2,6-diaminopurine ([R]-PMPDAP), a close analogue of tenofovir, a widely prescribed anti-HIV drug in human medicine. An improvement in the average Karnofsky score (pretreatment 33.2 ± 9.4%, post-treatment 65±12.3%), some laboratory parameters (ie, serum amyloid A and gammaglobulins) and a decrease of FIV viral load in plasma were noted in most cats. The role of concurrent medication in ameliorating the Karnofsky score, as well as the possible development of haematological side effects, are discussed. Side effects, when noted, appeared mild and reversible upon cessation of treatment. Although strong conclusions cannot be drawn owing to the small number of patients and lack of a placebo-treated control group, the activity of (R)-PMPDAP, as observed here, warrants further investigation. PMID:24782459

  19. Isolation of Viable Toxoplasma gondii from Tissues and Feces of Cats from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cats are important in the epidemiology of Toxoplasma gondii because they are the only hosts that excrete environmentally resistant oocysts in feces. In the present study, hearts, serum, and feces from 36 feral cats from Addis Ababa area, Ethiopia were examined for T. gondii infection. Antibodies to ...

  20. The Swedish breeding cat: population description, infectious diseases and reproductive performance evaluated by a questionnaire.

    PubMed

    Ström Holst, Bodil; Frössling, Jenny

    2009-10-01

    The questionnaire based study gives a combined description of management, infectious diseases and reproductive performance in breeding catteries during 1 year. The mean number of cats per cattery was 6.1, and 25% of the breeders let some of their cats have free access to outdoors. Breeders reported that infection with feline panleukopenia virus, feline immunodeficiency virus or feline leukaemia virus was uncommon, but 8% of the breeders had sold or had themselves owned a cat that died of feline infectious peritonitis. Presence of conjunctivitis was reported by 33.3% of the breeders. Mean litter size was 3.7+/-1.5, with 9.7% stillbirths and 8.3% kitten mortality week 1-12. The percentage of stillborn kittens increased with the age of the queen and litter size, and also differed among breeds. Kitten mortality differed among breeds, but did not increase with age of the queen. Seven percent of the litters were delivered by caesarean section, significantly more during winter and positively associated with presence of stillborn kittens. PMID:19254857

  1. Biology and impacts of Pacific island invasive species 9. Capra hircus, the feral goat, (Mammalia: Bovidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chynoweth, Mark W.; Litton, Creighton M.; Lepczyk, Christopher A.; Hess, Steve A.; Cordell, Susan

    2013-01-01

    Domestic goats, Capra hircus, were intentionally introduced to numerous oceanic islands beginning in the sixteenth century. The remarkable ability of C. hircus to survive in a variety of conditions has enabled this animal to become feral and impact native ecosystems on islands throughout the world. Direct ecological impacts include consumption and trampling of native plants, leading to plant community modification and transformation of ecosystem structure. While the negative impacts of feral goats are well-known and effective management strategies have been developed to control this invasive species, large populations persist on many islands. This review summarizes the impacts of feral goats on Pacific island ecosystems, and the management strategies available to control this invasive species.

  2. Genetic diversity of Toxoplama gondii isolates from Ethiopian feral cats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent studies indicate greater genetic variability among isolates of Toxoplasma gondii worldwide than previously thought. However, there is no information on genetic diversity of T. gondii from any host in Ethiopia. In the present study, genotyping was performed on viable T. gondii isolates by bioa...

  3. Chlortetracycline-Resistant Intestinal Bacteria in Organically Raised and Feral Swine ▿

    PubMed Central

    Stanton, Thad B.; Humphrey, Samuel B.; Stoffregen, William C.

    2011-01-01

    Organically raised swine had high fecal populations of chlortetracycline (CTC)-resistant (growing at 64 μg CTC/ml) Escherichia coli, Megasphaera elsdenii, and anaerobic bacteria. By comparison, CTC-resistant bacteria in feral swine feces were over 1,000-fold fewer and exhibited lower taxonomic diversity. PMID:21821750

  4. Satellite tracking and geospatial analysis of feral swine and their habitat use in Louisiana and Mississippi

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hartley, Stephen B.; Spear, Kathryn A.; Goatcher, Buddy L.

    2012-01-01

    Feral swine (Sus scrofa) is an invasive species that was first introduced to the continental United States in the 1500s by European explorers. Also known as feral hogs or feral pigs, the animals typically weigh about 200 pounds (up to 400 pounds), have characteristic tusks up to 3 inches long, are territorial, and live in groups, except for the boars, who are solitary and typically interact with sows only to breed. They have an average litter size of 5-6 piglets and occasionally two litters per year, and because they have few natural predators, survival of their young can be nearly 100 percent. Because of the detrimental impacts of this invasive species---including rooting, damaging agricultural lands, competing for food with and destroying the habitats of native animals, and spreading diseases and parasites---many public lands implement feral swine control programs on an annual basis. This activity is not enough to control or prevent an increase in swine populations, however, because of their distribution beyond the boundaries of public lands. Currently, little is known about feral swine populations, their habitat use and movement patterns, and the resulting habitat destruction in Louisiana and Mississippi. To abate this lack of knowledge, researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey National Wetlands Research Center (NWRC)---in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, and several large landholding companies---are using collars equipped with Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers to track feral swine in Louisiana and Mississippi to examine population movement patterns, document destruction of habitat and wildlife, and help increase and facilitate removal. The NWRC researchers are using the "Judas pig" system of attaching GPS-satellite telemetry collars to select feral swine to (1) track movement patterns on the landscape, (2) document habitat destruction and effects on native wildlife, and (3) improve

  5. Further investigation of exposure to Lawsonia intracellularis in wild and feral animals captured on horse properties with equine proliferative enteropathy.

    PubMed

    Pusterla, Nicola; Mapes, Samantha; Gebhart, Connie

    2012-11-01

    This study investigated the exposure to Lawsonia intracellularis in wild birds, mice, rabbits, raccoons, coyotes and squirrels, and feral cats and pigs on 10 farms with confirmed equine proliferative enteropathy (EPE). Serum samples from all resident foals (417 samples) as well as fecal (461) and serum (106) samples from wild and feral animals were collected for serological and molecular detection of L. intracellularis following the diagnosis of EPE in index cases. A total of three cats from two farms, three mice from two farms and eight cottontail rabbits from one farm had evidence of prior exposure to L. intracellularis. These animals may be an indicator of environmental exposure or may be actively involved in the transmission of L. intracellularis to foals by acting as a potential reservoir/amplifier host. PMID:22627048

  6. 50 CFR 70.8 - Range and feral animal management.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Range and feral animal management. 70.8... (CONTINUED) MANAGEMENT OF FISHERIES CONSERVATION AREAS NATIONAL FISH HATCHERIES § 70.8 Range and feral animal management. The range and feral animal management provisions set forth in part 30 of this chapter are...

  7. 50 CFR 70.8 - Range and feral animal management.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Range and feral animal management. 70.8... (CONTINUED) MANAGEMENT OF FISHERIES CONSERVATION AREAS NATIONAL FISH HATCHERIES § 70.8 Range and feral animal management. The range and feral animal management provisions set forth in part 30 of this chapter are...

  8. 50 CFR 70.8 - Range and feral animal management.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Range and feral animal management. 70.8... (CONTINUED) MANAGEMENT OF FISHERIES CONSERVATION AREAS NATIONAL FISH HATCHERIES § 70.8 Range and feral animal management. The range and feral animal management provisions set forth in part 30 of this chapter are...

  9. 50 CFR 70.8 - Range and feral animal management.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Range and feral animal management. 70.8... (CONTINUED) MANAGEMENT OF FISHERIES CONSERVATION AREAS NATIONAL FISH HATCHERIES § 70.8 Range and feral animal management. The range and feral animal management provisions set forth in part 30 of this chapter are...

  10. 50 CFR 70.8 - Range and feral animal management.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Range and feral animal management. 70.8... (CONTINUED) MANAGEMENT OF FISHERIES CONSERVATION AREAS NATIONAL FISH HATCHERIES § 70.8 Range and feral animal management. The range and feral animal management provisions set forth in part 30 of this chapter are...

  11. Brain acetylcholinesterase activity recovery following acute methyl parathion intoxication in two feral rodent species: comparison to laboratory rodents

    SciTech Connect

    Roberts, D.K.; Silvey, N.J.; Bailey, E.M. Jr.

    1988-07-01

    Widespread use of organophosphorus insecticides (OPs) has produced both acute and chronic intoxication among nontarget organisms. Most such studies have included fish and birds as opposed to mammals. However, numerous OP toxicity studies have been conducted on laboratory rodents creating a temptation to apply this data to feral rodents. Chronic OP exposure has been reported to produce cholinergic adaptation which in turn lowers mortality rates following a subsequent acute anticholinesterase exposure. The relevance that these laboratory rodent studies have on feral rodents is subject to debate. Field studies involving OP exposure among nontarget feral mammals have produced contradictory results. Increased mortality as a result of repeated OP application has been reported. This observation may be of considerable importance to nontarget feral rodent populations due to the repetitive nature of OP application protocols. The ability of feral rodents to recover brain AChE activity (BAA) between OP application intervals undoubtedly promotes their survival. This study investigated and compared BAA recovery following acute oral methyl parathion intoxication among 2 feral rodent species and among 2 common laboratory rodent species.

  12. At-risk individuals in Feline Immunodeficiency Virus epidemiology: evidence from a multivariate approach in a natural population of domestic cats (Felis catus).

    PubMed Central

    Courchamp, F.; Yoccoz, N. G.; Artois, M.; Pontier, D.

    1998-01-01

    Prevalence of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) infection was measured during 6 consecutive years in a natural rural population of domestic cats. Sex, age, weight, origin, group size and presence of antibodies to FIV were recorded for each sampled cat. Logistic regressions were used to estimate the influence of the recorded parameters on infection. FIV prevalence rates are as high as 19.6% in the total population, and do not statistically change between years, after controlling for changes in samples' age structure. FIV infection is characterized by risk factors linked to aggressive behaviour: old mature male adults having dispersed are more likely to be infected. A study of the cats group size and of the spatial distribution of infected individuals indicates the absence of infection clusters in males, and suggests the importance of roaming in the spreading of FIV. In conclusion, FIV infection spreads, with low contagiousness, mainly between particularly aggressive individuals, and the virus is endemic in this population. PMID:9747777

  13. Population response characteristics of intrinsic signals in the cat somatosensory cortex following canine mechanical stimulation.

    PubMed

    Tao, Jianxiang; Wang, Jian; Li, Zhong; Meng, Jianjun; Yu, Hongbo

    2016-08-01

    Intrinsic signal optical imaging has been widely used to measure functional maps in various sensory cortices due to better spatial resolution and sensitivity for detecting cortical neuroplasticity. However, application of this technique in dentistry has not been reported. In this study, intrinsic signal optical imaging was used to investigate mechanically driven responses in the cat somatosensory cortex, when punctate mechanical stimuli were applied to maxillary canines. The global signal and its spatial organization pattern were obtained. Global signal strength gradually increased with stimulus strength. There was no significant difference in response strength between contralateral and ipsilateral mechanical stimulation. A slightly greater response was recorded in the sigmoidal gyrus than in the coronal gyrus. The cat somatosensory cortex activated by sensory inputs from mechanical stimulation of canines lacks both topographical and functional organization. It is not organized into columns that represent sensory input from each tooth or direction of stimulation. These results demonstrate that intrinsic signal optical imaging is a valid tool for investigating neural responses and neuroplasticity in the somatosensory cortex that represents teeth. PMID:27163378

  14. Feral Hypertext: When Hypertext Literature Escapes Control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rettberg, Jill Walker

    This article explores the historical development of hypertext, arguing that we have seen a transition from early visions and implementations of hypertext that primarily dealt with using hypertext to gain greater control over knowledge and ideas, to today's messy web. Pre-web hypertext can be seen as a domesticated species bred in captivity. On the web, however, some breeds of hypertext have gone feral. Feral hypertext is no longer tame and domesticated, but is fundamentally out of our control. In order to understand and work with feral hypertext, we need to accept this and think more as hunter-gatherers than as the farmers we were for domesticated hypertext. The article discusses hypertext in general with an emphasis on literary and creative hypertext practice.

  15. Contraceptive potential of porcine and feline zona pellucida A, B and C subunits in domestic cats.

    PubMed

    Eade, Joyce A; Roberston, Ian D; James, Cassandra M

    2009-06-01

    Feral cat populations are a major problem in many urban regions throughout the world, threatening biodiversity. Immunocontraception is considered as an alternative and a more humane means to control overpopulation of pest animals than current methods including trapping, poisoning and shooting. In this study, we evaluate porcine zona pellucida (ZP) polypeptide (55 kDa) and feline ZP A, B and C subunits expressed by plasmid vectors as candidate vaccines against fertility in the female domestic cat. Cats were injected subcutaneously with three doses of the ZP vaccines. Vaccinated cats were compared with naïve cats for ZP-antibody response, ovarian histology and fertility after mating. Vaccination with native porcine ZP 55 kDa polypeptide induced anti-porcine ZP antibodies detected by ELISA. However, these antibodies did not cross-react with feline ZP as assessed by immunohistochemistry and no effect on fertility in vivo was observed after mating. However, vaccination of cats with feline ZPA or feline ZPB+C DNA vectors elicited circulating antibodies specific for feline ZP as assessed by ELISA, with reactivity to native feline ZP in ovarian follicles in situ. Vaccination with feline ZPA and ZPB+C DNA did not elicit changes in ovarian histology. Although sample sizes were small, conception rates in mated females were 25 and 20% in the ZPA and ZPB+C vaccinated groups respectively, compared with 83% in the control group. We conclude that feline ZPA and ZPB+C subunits are potential candidate antigens for immunocontraceptive vaccines in the domestic cat. PMID:19279201

  16. Modelling Landscape-Level Numerical Responses of Predators to Prey: The Case of Cats and Rabbits

    PubMed Central

    Cruz, Jennyffer; Glen, Alistair S.; Pech, Roger P.

    2013-01-01

    Predator-prey systems can extend over large geographical areas but empirical modelling of predator-prey dynamics has been largely limited to localised scales. This is due partly to difficulties in estimating predator and prey abundances over large areas. Collection of data at suitably large scales has been a major problem in previous studies of European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) and their predators. This applies in Western Europe, where conserving rabbits and predators such as Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus) is important, and in other parts of the world where rabbits are an invasive species supporting populations of introduced, and sometimes native, predators. In pastoral regions of New Zealand, rabbits are the primary prey of feral cats (Felis catus) that threaten native fauna. We estimate the seasonal numerical response of cats to fluctuations in rabbit numbers in grassland–shrubland habitat across the Otago and Mackenzie regions of the South Island of New Zealand. We use spotlight counts over 1645 km of transects to estimate rabbit and cat abundances with a novel modelling approach that accounts simultaneously for environmental stochasticity, density dependence and varying detection probability. Our model suggests that cat abundance is related consistently to rabbit abundance in spring and summer, possibly through increased rabbit numbers improving the fecundity and juvenile survival of cats. Maintaining rabbits at low abundance should therefore suppress cat numbers, relieving predation pressure on native prey. Our approach provided estimates of the abundance of cats and rabbits over a large geographical area. This was made possible by repeated sampling within each season, which allows estimation of detection probabilities. A similar approach could be applied to predator-prey systems elsewhere, and could be adapted to any method of direct observation in which there is no double-counting of individuals. Reliable estimates of numerical responses are essential

  17. Australian and Pacific contributions to the genetic diversity of Norfolk Island feral chickens

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Norfolk Island has a population of feral chickens which could be the result of domestic stock introduced onto the island by British settlers in 1788. However, there is ongoing debate about their origins because multiple human arrivals to the island may have brought chickens with them. Here we investigate the genetic origins of these feral chickens by sequencing their mitochondrial control region. We infer their phylogenetic relationships using a large dataset of novel sequences from Australian mainland domestic chickens and published sequences from around the world. Results Eleven control region haplotypes were found among the Norfolk Island feral and Australian mainland domestic chickens. Six of the Norfolk Island haplotypes fall within haplogroup E, but given the worldwide distribution of this haplogroup, the putative European origin of these chickens requires further investigation. One haplotype common among Norfolk Island and Australian samples belonged to a subgroup of haplogroup D, which appears to be restricted to chickens from Indonesia, Vanuatu and Guam. Conclusions Our data show that at least two mitochondrial DNA haplogroups (D and E) have contributed to the genetic make-up of Norfolk Island feral chickens. In addition, we have provided insights into the discrete geographical distribution and diversity of the chicken haplogroup D. In view of the worldwide interest in the characterisation of poultry resources, further assessment of chicken populations of Island Southeast Asia and the Pacific region is warranted. PMID:24063717

  18. High prevalence of toxoplasmosis in cats from Egypt: isolation of viable Toxoplasma Gondii, tissue distribution, and isolate designation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cats are important in the epidemiology of Toxoplasma gondii because they are the only hosts that excrete environmentally resistant oocysts in feces. In the present study, 158 feral cats from Giza, Egypt were examined for T. gondii infection. Antibodies to T. gondii were found in 97.4% with modified ...

  19. The Genetic Integrity of the Ex Situ Population of the European Wildcat (Felis silvestris silvestris) Is Seriously Threatened by Introgression from Domestic Cats (Felis silvestris catus)

    PubMed Central

    Witzenberger, Kathrin A.; Hochkirch, Axel

    2014-01-01

    Studies on the genetic diversity and relatedness of zoo populations are crucial for implementing successful breeding programmes. The European wildcat, Felis s. silvestris, is subject to intensive conservation measures, including captive breeding and reintroduction. We here present the first systematic genetic analysis of the captive population of Felis s. silvestris in comparison with a natural wild population. We used microsatellites and mtDNA sequencing to assess genetic diversity, structure and integrity of the ex situ population. Our results show that the ex situ population of the European wildcat is highly structured and that it has a higher genetic diversity than the studied wild population. Some genetic clusters matched the breeding lines of certain zoos or groups of zoos that often exchanged individuals. Two mitochondrial haplotype groups were detected in the in situ populations, one of which was closely related to the most common haplotype found in domestic cats, suggesting past introgression in the wild. Although native haplotypes were also found in the captive population, the majority (68%) of captive individuals shared a common mtDNA haplotype with the domestic cat (Felis s. catus). Only six captive individuals (7.7%) were assigned as wildcats in the STRUCTURE analysis (at K = 2), two of which had domestic cat mtDNA haplotypes and only two captive individuals were assigned as purebred wildcats by NewHybrids. These results suggest that the high genetic diversity of the captive population has been caused by admixture with domestic cats. Therefore, the captive population cannot be recommended for further breeding and reintroduction. PMID:25162450

  20. The genetic integrity of the ex situ population of the European wildcat (Felis silvestris silvestris) is seriously threatened by introgression from domestic cats (Felis silvestris catus).

    PubMed

    Witzenberger, Kathrin A; Hochkirch, Axel

    2014-01-01

    Studies on the genetic diversity and relatedness of zoo populations are crucial for implementing successful breeding programmes. The European wildcat, Felis s. silvestris, is subject to intensive conservation measures, including captive breeding and reintroduction. We here present the first systematic genetic analysis of the captive population of Felis s. silvestris in comparison with a natural wild population. We used microsatellites and mtDNA sequencing to assess genetic diversity, structure and integrity of the ex situ population. Our results show that the ex situ population of the European wildcat is highly structured and that it has a higher genetic diversity than the studied wild population. Some genetic clusters matched the breeding lines of certain zoos or groups of zoos that often exchanged individuals. Two mitochondrial haplotype groups were detected in the in situ populations, one of which was closely related to the most common haplotype found in domestic cats, suggesting past introgression in the wild. Although native haplotypes were also found in the captive population, the majority (68%) of captive individuals shared a common mtDNA haplotype with the domestic cat (Felis s. catus). Only six captive individuals (7.7%) were assigned as wildcats in the STRUCTURE analysis (at K = 2), two of which had domestic cat mtDNA haplotypes and only two captive individuals were assigned as purebred wildcats by NewHybrids. These results suggest that the high genetic diversity of the captive population has been caused by admixture with domestic cats. Therefore, the captive population cannot be recommended for further breeding and reintroduction. PMID:25162450

  1. Are cats (Felis catus) from multi-cat households more stressed? Evidence from assessment of fecal glucocorticoid metabolite analysis.

    PubMed

    Ramos, D; Reche-Junior, A; Fragoso, P L; Palme, R; Yanasse, N K; Gouvêa, V R; Beck, A; Mills, D S

    2013-10-01

    Given the social and territorial features described in feral cats, it is commonly assumed that life in multi-cat households is stressful for domestic cats and suggested that cats kept as single pets are likely to have better welfare. On the other hand, it has been hypothesized that under high densities cats can organize themselves socially thus preventing stress when spatial dispersion is unavailable. This study was aimed at comparing the general arousal underpinning emotional distress in single housed cats and in cats from multi-cat households (2 and 3-4 cats) on the basis of fecal glucocorticoid metabolites (GCM) measured via enzyme immunoassay (EIA). GCM did not significantly vary as a function of living style (single, double or group-housing); highly stressed individuals were equally likely in the three groups. Young cats in multi-cat households had lower GCM, and overall cats that tolerate (as opposed to dislike) petting by the owners tended to have higher GCM levels. Other environmental aspects within cat houses (e.g. relationship with humans, resource availability) may play a more important role in day to day feline arousal levels than the number of cats per se. PMID:24021924

  2. A cat's tale: the impact of genetic restoration on Florida panther population dynamics and persistence.

    PubMed

    Hostetler, Jeffrey A; Onorato, David P; Jansen, Deborah; Oli, Madan K

    2013-05-01

    1. Genetic restoration has been suggested as a management tool for mitigating detrimental effects of inbreeding depression in small, inbred populations, but the demographic mechanisms underlying population-level responses to genetic restoration remain poorly understood. 2. We studied the dynamics and persistence of the endangered Florida panther Puma concolor coryi population and evaluated the potential influence of genetic restoration on population growth and persistence parameters. As part of the genetic restoration programme, eight female Texas pumas P. c. stanleyana were released into Florida panther habitat in southern Florida in 1995. 3. The overall asymptotic population growth rate (λ) was 1.04 (5th and 95th percentiles: 0.95-1.14), suggesting an increase in the panther population of approximately 4% per year. Considering the effects of environmental and demographic stochasticities and density-dependence, the probability that the population will fall below 10 panthers within 100 years was 0.072 (0-0.606). 4. Our results suggest that the population would have declined at 5% per year (λ = 0.95; 0.83-1.08) in the absence of genetic restoration. Retrospective life table response experiment analysis revealed that the positive effect of genetic restoration on survival of kittens was primarily responsible for the substantial growth of the panther population that would otherwise have been declining. 5. For comparative purposes, we also estimated probability of quasi-extinction under two scenarios - implementation of genetic restoration and no genetic restoration initiative - using the estimated abundance of panthers in 1995, the year genetic restoration was initiated. Assuming no density-dependence, the probability that the panther population would fall below 10 panthers by 2010 was 0.098 (0.002-0.332) for the restoration scenario and 0.445 (0.032-0.944) for the no restoration scenario, providing further evidence that the panther population would have faced a

  3. Prevalence and Characterization of Salmonella Isolated from Feral Pigs Throughout Texas.

    PubMed

    Cummings, K J; Rodriguez-Rivera, L D; Grigar, M K; Rankin, S C; Mesenbrink, B T; Leland, B R; Bodenchuk, M J

    2016-09-01

    Feral pigs are one of the most abundant free-roaming ungulates in the United States, yet their role in the ecology and transmission of foodborne pathogens is poorly understood. Our objectives were to estimate the prevalence of Salmonella shedding among feral pigs throughout Texas, to identify risk factors for infection, and to characterize the isolates. Faecal samples were collected from feral pigs in Texas from June 2013 through May 2015. Standard bacteriologic culture methods were used to isolate Salmonella from samples, and isolates were characterized via serotyping and anti-microbial susceptibility testing. The prevalence of faecal Salmonella shedding among sampled pigs was 43.9% (194/442), with positive pigs originating from 50 counties. Pigs sampled during fall and summer were significantly more likely to be shedding Salmonella than pigs sampled during winter. High serovar diversity was evident among the isolates, and many of the detected serovars are leading causes of human salmonellosis. The most common serovars were Montevideo (10.0%), Newport (9.1%), and Give (8.2%). Resistance to anti-microbial agents was rare. The burgeoning feral pig population in the United States may represent an emerging threat to food safety. PMID:26614102

  4. Trichinella spiralis in an agricultural ecosystem. III. Epidemiological investigations of Trichinella spiralis in resident wild and feral animals.

    PubMed

    Leiby, D A; Schad, G A; Duffy, C H; Murrell, K D

    1988-10-01

    As part of a larger epidemiological study examining the transmission of Trichinella spiralis in an agricultural ecosystem, resident wild and feral animals were trapped to determine the extent of their involvement in the natural, on-farm cycling of the parasite among swine. During a 21-mo-study, seven of 15 skunks (Mephitis mephitis), one of three opossums (Didelphis virginiana), two of two feral domestic cats and a raccoon (Procyon lotor) were found to be infected, while five shrews (Blarina brevicauda) and 18 deer mice (Peromyscus spp.) were uninfected. Most of the former hosts probably became infected by scavenging dead infected swine or rats (Rattus norvegicus). However, infections obtained through predation of living rats, particularly with regard to the cats, cannot be excluded. Our observations do not suggest that there was transmission of T. spiralis from the wild animals to swine. Therefore, transmission of T. spiralis appeared to occur only from the farm's swine and rats to the associated wild and feral animals. PMID:3193554

  5. Home range use and movement patterns of non-native feral goats in a tropical island montane dry landscape.

    PubMed

    Chynoweth, Mark W; Lepczyk, Christopher A; Litton, Creighton M; Hess, Steven C; Kellner, James R; Cordell, Susan

    2015-01-01

    Advances in wildlife telemetry and remote sensing technology facilitate studies of broad-scale movements of ungulates in relation to phenological shifts in vegetation. In tropical island dry landscapes, home range use and movements of non-native feral goats (Capra hircus) are largely unknown, yet this information is important to help guide the conservation and restoration of some of the world's most critically endangered ecosystems. We hypothesized that feral goats would respond to resource pulses in vegetation by traveling to areas of recent green-up. To address this hypothesis, we fitted six male and seven female feral goats with Global Positioning System (GPS) collars equipped with an Argos satellite upload link to examine goat movements in relation to the plant phenology using the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). Movement patterns of 50% of males and 40% of females suggested conditional movement between non-overlapping home ranges throughout the year. A shift in NDVI values corresponded with movement between primary and secondary ranges of goats that exhibited long-distance movement, suggesting that vegetation phenology as captured by NDVI is a good indicator of the habitat and movement patterns of feral goats in tropical island dry landscapes. In the context of conservation and restoration of tropical island landscapes, the results of our study identify how non-native feral goats use resources across a broad landscape to sustain their populations and facilitate invasion of native plant communities. PMID:25807275

  6. Home Range Use and Movement Patterns of Non-Native Feral Goats in a Tropical Island Montane Dry Landscape

    PubMed Central

    Chynoweth, Mark W.; Lepczyk, Christopher A.; Litton, Creighton M.; Hess, Steven C.; Kellner, James R.; Cordell, Susan

    2015-01-01

    Advances in wildlife telemetry and remote sensing technology facilitate studies of broad-scale movements of ungulates in relation to phenological shifts in vegetation. In tropical island dry landscapes, home range use and movements of non-native feral goats (Capra hircus) are largely unknown, yet this information is important to help guide the conservation and restoration of some of the world’s most critically endangered ecosystems. We hypothesized that feral goats would respond to resource pulses in vegetation by traveling to areas of recent green-up. To address this hypothesis, we fitted six male and seven female feral goats with Global Positioning System (GPS) collars equipped with an Argos satellite upload link to examine goat movements in relation to the plant phenology using the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). Movement patterns of 50% of males and 40% of females suggested conditional movement between non-overlapping home ranges throughout the year. A shift in NDVI values corresponded with movement between primary and secondary ranges of goats that exhibited long-distance movement, suggesting that vegetation phenology as captured by NDVI is a good indicator of the habitat and movement patterns of feral goats in tropical island dry landscapes. In the context of conservation and restoration of tropical island landscapes, the results of our study identify how non-native feral goats use resources across a broad landscape to sustain their populations and facilitate invasion of native plant communities. PMID:25807275

  7. Survey of Feral Swine ( Sus scrofa ) Infection with the Agent of Chagas Disease ( Trypanosoma cruzi ) in Texas, 2013-14.

    PubMed

    Comeaux, Juliette M; Curtis-Robles, Rachel; Lewis, Barbara C; Cummings, Kevin J; Mesenbrink, Brian T; Leland, Bruce R; Bodenchuk, Michael J; Hamer, Sarah A

    2016-07-01

    : Feral swine ( Sus scrofa ) are an invasive species and reservoir of numerous zoonotic pathogens in the US, and Texas leads the nation in the estimated population size of feral hogs. Texas also harbors enzootic transmission cycles of the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi , agent of Chagas disease. Given previous evidence that swine can serve as reservoirs of T. cruzi in Latin America and new evidence of triatomines (kissing bugs) feeding on swine in Texas, we measured the prevalence of T. cruzi infection in feral swine in Texas. From 2013 to 2014, we sampled blood and/or cardiac tissue from 78 feral swine across 14 Texas counties (seven with and seven without prior documentation of kissing bug occurrence) and used PCR and histopathology to detect T. cruzi infection. We determined an overall infection prevalence of 6% (3 of 54) based on PCR evaluation of cardiac tissue, and no blood samples were positive (n=72). All three positive pigs were from counties where kissing bugs are documented. No T. cruzi amastigotes were noted on histopathology (n=54). Sarcocysts were observed in 10 (18%) of the samples, five of which also had mild focal areas of degeneration and inflammatory cell infiltration. Eco-epidemiologic investigations can provide an assessment of contributions of feral hogs to maintenance of T. cruzi across a landscape to help protect human and animal health. PMID:27224214

  8. Home range use and movement patterns of non-native feral goats in a tropical island montane dry landscape

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chynoweth, Mark W.; Lepczyk, Christopher A.; Litton, Creighton M.; Hess, Steve; Kellner, James; Cordell, Susan

    2015-01-01

    Advances in wildlife telemetry and remote sensing technology facilitate studies of broad-scale movements of ungulates in relation to phenological shifts in vegetation. In tropical island dry landscapes, home range use and movements of non-native feral goats (Capra hircus) are largely unknown, yet this information is important to help guide the conservation and restoration of some of the world’s most critically endangered ecosystems. We hypothesized that feral goats would respond to resource pulses in vegetation by traveling to areas of recent green-up. To address this hypothesis, we fitted six male and seven female feral goats with Global Positioning System (GPS) collars equipped with an Argos satellite upload link to examine goat movements in relation to the plant phenology using the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). Movement patterns of 50% of males and 40% of females suggested conditional movement between non-overlapping home ranges throughout the year. A shift in NDVI values corresponded with movement between primary and secondary ranges of goats that exhibited long-distance movement, suggesting that vegetation phenology as captured by NDVI is a good indicator of the habitat and movement patterns of feral goats in tropical island dry landscapes. In the context of conservation and restoration of tropical island landscapes, the results of our study identify how non-native feral goats use resources across a broad landscape to sustain their populations and facilitate invasion of native plant communities.

  9. Counting Cats: Spatially Explicit Population Estimates of Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) Using Unstructured Sampling Data

    PubMed Central

    Broekhuis, Femke; Gopalaswamy, Arjun M.

    2016-01-01

    Many ecological theories and species conservation programmes rely on accurate estimates of population density. Accurate density estimation, especially for species facing rapid declines, requires the application of rigorous field and analytical methods. However, obtaining accurate density estimates of carnivores can be challenging as carnivores naturally exist at relatively low densities and are often elusive and wide-ranging. In this study, we employ an unstructured spatial sampling field design along with a Bayesian sex-specific spatially explicit capture-recapture (SECR) analysis, to provide the first rigorous population density estimates of cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) in the Maasai Mara, Kenya. We estimate adult cheetah density to be between 1.28 ± 0.315 and 1.34 ± 0.337 individuals/100km2 across four candidate models specified in our analysis. Our spatially explicit approach revealed ‘hotspots’ of cheetah density, highlighting that cheetah are distributed heterogeneously across the landscape. The SECR models incorporated a movement range parameter which indicated that male cheetah moved four times as much as females, possibly because female movement was restricted by their reproductive status and/or the spatial distribution of prey. We show that SECR can be used for spatially unstructured data to successfully characterise the spatial distribution of a low density species and also estimate population density when sample size is small. Our sampling and modelling framework will help determine spatial and temporal variation in cheetah densities, providing a foundation for their conservation and management. Based on our results we encourage other researchers to adopt a similar approach in estimating densities of individually recognisable species. PMID:27135614

  10. Counting Cats: Spatially Explicit Population Estimates of Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) Using Unstructured Sampling Data.

    PubMed

    Broekhuis, Femke; Gopalaswamy, Arjun M

    2016-01-01

    Many ecological theories and species conservation programmes rely on accurate estimates of population density. Accurate density estimation, especially for species facing rapid declines, requires the application of rigorous field and analytical methods. However, obtaining accurate density estimates of carnivores can be challenging as carnivores naturally exist at relatively low densities and are often elusive and wide-ranging. In this study, we employ an unstructured spatial sampling field design along with a Bayesian sex-specific spatially explicit capture-recapture (SECR) analysis, to provide the first rigorous population density estimates of cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) in the Maasai Mara, Kenya. We estimate adult cheetah density to be between 1.28 ± 0.315 and 1.34 ± 0.337 individuals/100km2 across four candidate models specified in our analysis. Our spatially explicit approach revealed 'hotspots' of cheetah density, highlighting that cheetah are distributed heterogeneously across the landscape. The SECR models incorporated a movement range parameter which indicated that male cheetah moved four times as much as females, possibly because female movement was restricted by their reproductive status and/or the spatial distribution of prey. We show that SECR can be used for spatially unstructured data to successfully characterise the spatial distribution of a low density species and also estimate population density when sample size is small. Our sampling and modelling framework will help determine spatial and temporal variation in cheetah densities, providing a foundation for their conservation and management. Based on our results we encourage other researchers to adopt a similar approach in estimating densities of individually recognisable species. PMID:27135614

  11. Increased risk for lymphoma and glomerulonephritis in a closed population of cats exposed to feline leukemia virus.

    PubMed

    Francis, D P; Essex, M; Jakowski, R M; Cotter, S M; Lerer, T J; Hardy, W D

    1980-03-01

    Feline leukemia virus (FeLV)-associated diseases were observed in a household in eastern Connecticut having 134 cats over a period of five and a half years. FeLV-positive cats had a much higher mortality rate (34.6 deaths per 1000 cat-months of follow-up) than did FeLV-negative cats (8.9 deaths per 1000 cat-months of follow-up). The leading cause of death was glomerulonephritis followed by lymphoma. The relative risk for virus-positive cats as compared to virus-negative cats for the two diseases was 9.9 and 9.6, respectively. The major risk factors for the development of lymphoma were virus positivity and low antibody titer to the feline oncornavirus-associated cell membrane antigen (FOCMA). No significant differences in cancer incidence were seen between the two major breeds (Abyssinian and Burmese) in the household. An older age at arrival in the house decreased death rates for all causes in the household, but it did not significantly affect death rates from lymphoma, although there was a positive trend. PMID:6244730

  12. Cross-sectional survey of Toxoplasma gondii infection in colony cats from urban Florence (Italy).

    PubMed

    Mancianti, Francesca; Nardoni, Simona; Ariti, Gaetano; Parlanti, Dario; Giuliani, Giovanna; Papini, Roberto A

    2010-04-01

    Cats are the key species in the epidemiology of Toxoplasma gondii infection, even if the proportion of subjects excreting oocysts is low. The aim of the present paper was to obtain information about seroprevalence, oocyst shedding rate and presence of T gondii DNA in faeces collected from an urban population of colony cats in Florence (Tuscany). Fifty European shorthair feral cats were examined for anti-T gondii specific antibodies by a modified agglutination test (MAT), and for oocysts by microscopic examination and for faecal protozoal DNA, by means of a nested polymerase chain reaction (n-PCR) protocol. Twenty-two out of 50 serum samples (44%) were MAT positive. T gondii oocysts were not detected in any of the examined faecal samples. Eight out of 50 faecal specimens (16%) were n-PCR positive and sequencing of the bands was specific for T gondii. Detection by combination of the two methods was higher than single techniques and enhanced the detection of T gondii up to 48%. Our results suggest that the use of MAT plus PCR in faeces may be the best choice for diagnosis of feline toxoplasmosis. Further studies to ascertain the real infectivity of the copro-PCR positive subjects are required. PMID:19811938

  13. Transfer of tylosin resistance between Enterococcus spp. during continuous-flow culture of feral or domestic porcine gut microbes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mixed populations of domesticated and feral pig gut microbes (RPCF and FC, respectively) were grown in continuous culture to investigate the effects of tylosin on antimicrobial resistance. Cultures established in steady state were inoculated with 9.7 log10 colony forming units (CFU) of a tylosin-re...

  14. Host-Parasite Relationship of Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae and Argasidae) and Feral Pigs (Sus scrofa) in the Nhecolândia Region of the Pantanal Wetlands in Mato Grosso do Sul

    PubMed Central

    Cançado, P. H. D.; Faccini, J. L. H.; Herrera, H. M.; Tavares, L. E. R.; Mourão, G. M.; Piranda, E. M.; Paes, R. C. S.; Ribeiro, C. C. D. U.; Borghesan, T. C.; Piacenti, A. K.; Kinas, M. A.; Santos, C. C.; Ono, T. M.; Paiva, F.

    2013-01-01

    Feral pigs (S. scrofa) were introduced to the Pantanal region around 200 years ago and the population appears to be in expansion. Its eradication is considered to be impossible. The population of feral pigs in the Pantanal wetlands is currently estimated at one million. Two scientific excursions were organized. The first was conducted during the dry season, when 21 feral pigs were captured and the second was during the wet season, when 23 feral pigs were captured. Ticks were collected and the oviposition and hatching process were studied to confirm the biological success of each tick species. Three tick species were found to be feeding on feral pigs: Amblyomma cajennense, A. parvum, and Ornithodoros rostratus. During the dry season, 178 adult A. cajennense were collected, contrasting with 127 A. cajennense specimens in the wet season. This suggests that the seasonality of these ticks in the Brazilian Pantanal wetlands could be different from other regions. The results indicate that A. parvum and A. cajennense are biologically successful parasites in relation to feral pigs. A. cajennense appears to have adapted to this tick-host relationship, as well as the areas where feral pigs are abundant, and could play a role in the amplification of this tick population. PMID:27335855

  15. Molecular detection of tick-borne protozoan parasites in a population of domestic cats in midwestern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Braga, Ísis Assis; de Souza Ramos, Dirceu Guilherme; Marcili, Arlei; Melo, Andréia Lima Tomé; Taques, Isis Indaiara Gonçalves Granjeiro; Amude, Alexandre Mendes; Chitarra, Cristiane Silva; Nakazato, Luciano; Dutra, Valéria; de Campos Pacheco, Richard; Aguiar, Daniel Moura

    2016-07-01

    Some tick-borne pathogens that infect domestic cats have been considered emergent in veterinary medicine. Occurrences of Hepatozoon spp., Babesia spp. and Cytauxzoon spp. have been described in several regions of Brazil. This paper offers a comprehensive analysis of the 18S rRNA gene of a Hepatozoon sp. strain detected in domestic cats in the metropolitan area of Cuiabá, in Midwestern Brazil. Based on a molecular analysis, we detected the presence of Hepatozoon species circulating among cats in this region. The aforementioned strain is closely related to other isolates of H. felis detected in wild felids. Moreover, a phylogenetic analysis indicates that this genotype is grouped into a clade of 18S rRNA sequences previously described for the genus Hepatozoon in wild felids around the world. Hepatozoon felis strains detected in cats from Spain and Israel showed, respectively, 98% and 97% identity to our sequence and are clustered on a separate branch of the phylogenetic tree. This finding suggests a high diversity of Hepatozoon genotypes occurring in cats in Europe and South America. None of the analyzed cats were positive for Babesia spp. or Cytauxzoon spp. by PCR analysis. PMID:27260253

  16. Impacts of feral horse use on rangelands and riparian areas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feral (wild) horse impacts on rangelands and riparian areas are largely unknown. The impacts of feral horses are often indistinguishable from domestic livestock impacts because livestock grazing occurs across most horse herd management areas. However, the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge has a lar...

  17. Impacts of feral horse use on rangelands and riparian areas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feral (wild) horse impacts on rangelands and riparian areas are largely unknown. The impacts of feral horses are often indistinguishable from domestic livestock impacts because livestock grazing occurs across most horse herd management areas. However, the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge has a large...

  18. Hawaiian Duck's Future Threatened by Feral Mallards

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Uyehara, Kimberly J.; Engilis, Andrew, Jr.; Reynolds, Michelle

    2007-01-01

    Nearly 70 percent of Hawaii's native bird species are found nowhere else on Earth, and many of these species are declining or in danger of extinction. Although the Hawaiian Islands were once home to a remarkable diversity of waterfowl, only three species remain-the Hawaiian Goose (Nene), Laysan Duck, and Hawaiian Duck (Koloa maoli)-all Federally endangered. The Koloa maoli is the only Hawaiian bird threatened by 'genetic extinction' from hybridization with an invasive species-feral Mallard ducks. U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) biologists in Hawaii are working to find the causes of bird endangerment and ways to prevent extinction of the Koloa maoli and other threatened birds.

  19. Reproductive characteristics of the feral raccoon (Procyon lotor) in Hokkaido, Japan.

    PubMed

    Asano, Makoto; Matoba, Yohei; Ikeda, Toru; Suzuki, Masatsugu; Asakawa, Mitsuhiko; Ohtaishi, Noriyuki

    2003-03-01

    Reproduction of feral raccoons (Procyon lotor) in Hokkaido, Japan, was examined during a 2-year period by analysis of placental scars or fetuses in the uterus. Of 242 collected females, 69 (29%) were juveniles, 71 (29%) yearlings, and 102 (42%) adults. The pregnancy rate averaged 66% in yearlings and was significantly lower than the 96% average observed in adults (p<0.01). Litter size ranged from 1 to 7 offspring per female, and averaged 3.6 in yearlings and 3.9 in adults. There was no significant difference in mean litter size between yearlings and adults. In Hokkaido, the raccoon mating season peaked in February and the majority of litters were born between March and May, similar to patterns described in North America, but some females mated in summer. The reproductive potential of feral raccoons in Hokkaido was similar to that reported in North America. The recent increase in raccoon numbers can be explained by their high productivity. Harvest data suggest that hunting pressure on juveniles is lower than that for older age classes when using box traps in summer. In order to reduce the feral raccoon population, alternative hunting methods that increase juvenile mortality rates are needed. PMID:12679568

  20. The complete mitochondrial genome of the Feral Rock Pigeon (Columba livia breed feral).

    PubMed

    Li, Chun-Hong; Liu, Fang; Wang, Li

    2014-10-01

    Abstract In the present work, we report the complete mitochondrial genome sequence of feral rock pigeon for the first time. The total length of the mitogenome was 17,239 bp with the base composition of 30.3% for A, 24.0% for T, 31.9% for C, and 13.8% for G and an A-T (54.3 %)-rich feature was detected. It harbored 13 protein-coding genes, 2 ribosomal RNA genes, 22 transfer RNA genes and 1 non-coding control region (D-loop region). The arrangement of all genes was identical to the typical mitochondrial genomes of pigeon. The complete mitochondrial genome sequence of feral rock pigeon would serve as an important data set of the germplasm resources for further study. PMID:24438239

  1. Cat Batiks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Buban, Marcia H.

    1998-01-01

    Discusses an art activity where fourth-grade students created backgrounds using melted paraffin and a variety of paints for their cat batik/collage. Explains that after the students created their backgrounds, they assembled their paper cats for the collage using smaller shapes glued together and wax to add texture for fur. (CMK)

  2. No virus replication in domestic cats fed with RHDV-infected rabbit livers.

    PubMed

    Zheng, T; Lu, G; Napier, A M; Lockyer, S J

    2003-08-29

    Previous studies have shown that feral cats (Felis catus) from rabbit haemorrhagic disease (RHD) epidemic areas in New Zealand had antibodies against RHD Virus (RHDV) and RHDV RNA was identified by nested RT-PCR from one seropositive feral cat liver. To assess whether RHDV replicates and produces clinical consequences in cats following the consumption of RHDV-infected rabbit, a challenge trial was conducted by feeding cats RHDV-infected rabbit livers. Antibodies against RHDV were detected by immunoassay from sera of cats collected 10 days after the consumption of RHDV-infected livers. Animals fed four times with RHDV-infected livers, had higher antibody titres than animals fed only once. RHDV RNA was detected by nested RT-PCR from mesenteric lymph nodes, tonsil, spleen and liver of cats fed with RHDV-infected livers. RHDV anti-genomic RNA was also detected by nested RT-PCR from mesenteric lymph nodes collected from one animal 2 days after the fourth feed. RHDV was detected by antigen ELISA from cat faeces 1-2 days after the consumption of RHDV-infected livers. Even though a large amount of RHDV has been used, cats did not show any signs of disease. Although abortive RHDV replication could not be ruled out, active RHDV replication was not demonstrated. PMID:12860077

  3. Ixodid ticks associated with feral swine in Texas.

    PubMed

    Sanders, David M; Schuster, Anthony L; McCardle, P Wesley; Strey, Otto F; Blankenship, Terry L; Teel, Pete D

    2013-12-01

    Ixodid ticks were collected from feral swine in eight Texas ecoregions from 2008-2011. Sixty-two percent of 806 feral swine were infested with one or more of the following species: Amblyomma americanum, A. cajennense, A. maculatum, Dermacentor albipictus, D. halli, D. variabilis, and Ixodes scapularis. Juvenile and adult feral swine of both sexes were found to serve as host to ixodid ticks. Longitudinal surveys of feral swine at four geographic locations show persistent year-round tick infestations of all gender-age classes for tick species common to their respective geographic locations and ecoregions. Amblyomma americanum, A. cajennense, A. maculatum and D. variabilis were collected from 66% of feral swine harvested through an abatement program in seven ecoregions from March to October in 2009. These results indicate westward geographic expansion of D. variabilis. Summary results show feral swine are competent hosts for ixodid species responsible for the transmission of pathogens and diminished well-being in livestock, wildlife, and humans. PMID:24581367

  4. [Effects of the environment on health of feral pigeons (Columba livia)].

    PubMed

    Schreiber, Tim; Kamphausen, Ludger; Haag-Wackernagel, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    We examined 80 feral pigeons and their fecal samples from two feral pigeon lofts of the "Pigeon Action of Basel" (Switzerland) for different pathogens. The tested material harbored four pathogenic agents transmissible to humans (Chlamydia spp., Salmonella spec., Campylobacter jejuni, Cryptococcus neoformans) In addition several pathogens were found which are no zoonotic agents but potentially pathogenic for the pigeons themselves, such as Trichomonas gallinae, coccidia, helminths, ectoparasites and fungi. The number of pathogens and parasites detected in the fecal samples varied significantly between the two localities. The pigeons of the two investigated breeding flocks differed in nutritional status and the incidence of two species of feather lice, Columbicola columbae and Campanulotes bidentatus compar. The prevalence of Trichomonas gallinae between juveniles and adults was not significantly different but juveniles exhibited significantly heavier infestation if infected. Individuals with a good nutritional status tend to show heavier infestation with Trichomonas gallinae compared to birds with moderate or poor nutritional status. Birds with a poor nutritional status tend to suffer from a heavier infestation with the feather louse C. columbae, and birds with a good nutritional status show significant heavier infestation with C. bidentatus compar. It was remarkable that one of the two investigated breeding populations almost gave up its breeding activity for two years because of the loss of its familiar food source. Nevertheless, this population showed a better nutritional status than the population without restrictions in the acquisition of food. This fact could be interpreted by the existence of a biological control mechanism for suppression of the reproduction in degraded environmental conditions to ensure the survival of the adults. If this assumption is correct, the feeding of feral pigeons by animal lovers possibly causes impairment of pigeon's health in

  5. Foaling rates in feral horses treated with the immunocontraceptive porcine zona pellucida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, J.I.; Roelle, J.E.; Cade, B.S.; Coates-Markle, L.; Kane, A.J.

    2011-01-01

    Locally abundant feral horses (Equus caballus) can rapidly deplete available resources. Fertility control agents present promising nonlethal tools for reducing their population growth rates. We tested the effect of 2 forms of the immunocontraceptive porcine zona pellucida (PZP) on foaling rates in 3 populations of feral horses in the western United States. A liquid form requiring annual boosters was administered at Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Range, Mesa County (CO), and Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range, Bighorn County (WY) and Carbon County (MT), and a time-release pellet form designed to produce 2 yr of infertility was administered at McCullough Peaks Herd Management Area, Park County (WY). Average foaling rates (foals born/mare-yr) from direct observation of untreated and treated female horses (mares), 2004-2008, were 60.1% (n = 153 mare-yr) versus 6.6% (n = 91 mare-yr) at Little Book Cliffs, and 62.8% (n = 129 mare-yr) versus 17.7% (n = 79 mare-yr) at Pryor Mountain, respectively. At McCullough Peaks, mean annual foaling rates from 2006 to 2008 were 75.0% (n = 48 mare-yr) for untreated mares and 31.7% (n = 101 mare-yr) for treated mares. Controlling for age of mares and pretreatment differences in fertility, PZP reduced foaling rates in all 3 herds. The pellets used at McCullough Peaks (produced by cold evaporation) were less effective than pellets used in a previous trial and produced by heat extrusion. Immunocontraception with PZP may be a useful tool in reducing fertility rates in some western United States feral horse herds, but population growth reduction will depend on timely access to mares for inoculation and the proportion of mares that can be successfully treated. ?? 2011 The Wildlife Society.

  6. How much land is needed for feral pig hunting in Hawai'i?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, Steven C.; Jacobi, James D.

    2014-01-01

    Hunting is often considered to be incompatible with conservation of native biota and watershed functions in Hawai'i. Management actions for conservation generally exclude large non-native mammals from natural areas, thereby reducing the amount of land area available for hunting activities and the maintenance of sustainable game populations. An approach which may be useful in addressing the necessary minimum amount of land area allocated for hunting in Hawai'i is to determine the amount of land area necessary for sustaining populations of hunted animals to meet current levels harvested by the public. We ask: What is the total amount of land necessary to provide sustained-yield hunting of game meat for food at the current harvest level on Hawai'i Island if only feral pigs (Sus scrofa) were to be harvested? We used a simplistic analysis to estimate that 1 317.6 km2-1 651.4 km2 would be necessary to produce 187 333.6 kg of feral pig meat annually based on the range of dressed weight per whole pig, the proportion of a pig population that can be sustainably removed annually, and the density of pig populations in the wild. This amount of area comprises 12.6-15.8% of the total land area of Hawai'i Island, but more likely represents 27.6-43.5% of areas that may be compatible with sustained-yield hunting.

  7. Behavioural responses of feral and domestic guppies (Poecilia reticulata) to predators and their cues.

    PubMed

    Swaney, William T; Cabrera-Álvarez, María J; Reader, Simon M

    2015-09-01

    Predation is an important factor during adaptation to novel environments, and the feralisation of introduced domestic species often involves responding appropriately to allopatric predators despite a background of domestication and inbreeding. Twenty years ago, domestic guppies were introduced to a semi-natural environment at Burgers' Zoo in the Netherlands, where they have since been exposed to avian predation. We compared predation-linked behaviours in this feral population and in domestic guppies akin to the original founders. We found that both populations responded to a novel predator and to conspecific alarm cues. However, shoaling, an important anti-predator behaviour, was higher among feral guppies both at baseline and when exposed to the novel predator. We did not observe a linked suite of anti-predator behaviours across shoaling, predator inspection, alarm substance sensitivity and boldness, suggesting that these responses may be decoupled from one another depending on local predation regimes. As we compared two populations, we cannot identify the causal factors determining population differences, however, our results do suggest that shoaling is either a particularly consequential anti-predator adaptation or the most labile of the behaviours we tested. Finally, the behavioural adaptability of domestic guppies may help to explain their success as an invasive species. PMID:26003138

  8. Feral Pigs, Introduced Mosquitoes, and the Decline of Hawai'i's Native Birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    LaPointe, Dennis A.

    2006-01-01

    The introduction of mosquitoes, avian pox, and avian malaria to the Hawaiian Islands has had a profound effect on the geographical distribution and population number of highly susceptible Hawaiian honeycreepers, and likely contributed to the extinction of several species. While the mosquito vector (disease-carrier) is most closely associated with human activity, in remote Hawaiian rain forests, feral pigs may be pivotally important to the disease system. Since 1991, USGS scientists have taken a leadership position in identifying the role these diseases continue to play in the decline and extinction of native Hawaiian forest birds and in finding ways to mitigate their impacts.

  9. In the United States, negligible rates of zoonotic sarcocystosis occur in feral swine that, by contrast, frequently harbor infections with Sarcocystis meischeriana, a related parasite contracted from dogs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Transmission of pathogens between domestic and wild life animals plays important role in epidemiology. Feral pig populations are increasing and expanding in the USA, and may constitute a risk to non-biosecure domestic pig facilities by serving as reservoirs for pathogens. We surveyed, for Sarcocysti...

  10. Low habitat overlap at landscape scale between wild camelids and feral donkeys in the Chilean desert

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malo, Juan E.; González, Benito A.; Mata, Cristina; Vielma, André; Donoso, Denise S.; Fuentes, Nicolás; Estades, Cristián F.

    2016-01-01

    Feral domestic ungulates may compete with the populations of wild herbivores with which they coexist, particularly so in arid regions. The potential competition between wild camelids and feral donkeys at the eastern sector of the Atacama Desert is evaluated in terms of their coincidence or segregation in habitat use and complemented with a comparison of reproductive output (yearling/adult ratio) of vicuña family groups in the proximity vs. distant from donkey observations. Habitat use of wild camelids and donkeys was sampled driving some 1250 km of roads and tracks at the dry and wet seasons. There were 221 vicuñas (Vicugna vicugna) sightings, 77 for donkeys (Equus asinus), 25 for guanacos (Lama guanicoe) and 8 for hybrids between guanacos and domestic llamas (Lama glama), as well as 174 randomly selected control locations. By means of Generalised Discriminant Analysis and Analysis of Variance we show that all ungulates actively select their habitat, with significant differences between use and availability in the area. Donkeys are relatively abundant in comparison with camelids and coincide broadly with both of them across the altitudinal gradient, but they fall between them in local scale habitat selection and do not seem to force their displacement from their preferred habitats. Thus donkeys occur preferentially on slopes with a high cover of tall shrubs, whereas vicuñas use valley bottoms with grass and guanacos the upper slope zones with grass. The potential for competition between donkeys and wild camelids is thus limited and it does not affect the reproductive output of vicuña in this region. Therefore, with the present knowledge we suggest that population control is not currently merited for feral donkeys.

  11. Big cat genomics.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Stephen J; Johnson, Warren E

    2005-01-01

    Advances in population and quantitative genomics, aided by the computational algorithms that employ genetic theory and practice, are now being applied to biological questions that surround free-ranging species not traditionally suitable for genetic enquiry. Here we review how applications of molecular genetic tools have been used to describe the natural history, present status, and future disposition of wild cat species. Insight into phylogenetic hierarchy, demographic contractions, geographic population substructure, behavioral ecology, and infectious diseases have revealed strategies for survival and adaptation of these fascinating predators. Conservation, stabilization, and management of the big cats are important areas that derive benefit from the genome resources expanded and applied to highly successful species, imperiled by an expanding human population. PMID:16124868

  12. Movement initiation in groups of feral horses.

    PubMed

    Krueger, Konstanze; Flauger, Birgit; Farmer, Kate; Hemelrijk, Charlotte

    2014-03-01

    Herds of ungulates, flocks of birds, swarms of insects and schools of fish move in coordinated groups. Computer models show that only one or very few animals are needed to initiate and direct movement. To investigate initiation mechanisms further, we studied two ways in which movement can be initiated in feral horses: herding, and departure from the group. We examined traits affecting the likelihood of a horse initiating movement i.e. social rank, affiliative relationships, spatial position, and social network. We also investigated whether group members join a movement in dominance rank order. Our results show that whereas herding is exclusive to alpha males, any group member may initiate movement by departure. Social bonds, the number of animals interacted with, and the spatial position were not significantly associated with movement initiation. We did not find movement initiation by departure to be exclusive to any type of individual. Instead we find evidence for a limited form of distributed leadership, with higher ranking animals being followed more often. PMID:24220794

  13. Immunocontraception for Managing Feral Cattle in Hong Kong

    PubMed Central

    Massei, Giovanna; Koon, Ka-Kei; Benton, Steven; Brown, Richard; Gomm, Matt; Orahood, Darcy S.; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Eckery, Douglas C.

    2015-01-01

    Conflicts between human interests and feral cattle in Hong Kong derive from growing numbers of free-roaming cattle. Public antipathy towards lethal population control led the local authorities to consider fertility control to reduce cattle numbers. This study assessed the potential side effects of the immunocontraceptive GonaCon on individual female cattle and established the effectiveness of GonaCon to induce infertility. We evaluated GonaCon in 34 captive cattle assigned to four groups: Control administered a sham solution; Webbed (surgically sterilized through removal of the oviducts), administered one dose of GonaCon; Webbed, administered one dose of GonaCon and a booster dose three months later, and Treated, administered one dose of GonaCon. The side effects of GonaCon were assessed by monitoring injection site, body weight, body condition, size of lymph nodes, body temperature, and feeding behaviour 1 week and 1, 3, 6, 9 and 12 months after vaccination and by haematological and biochemical variables at vaccination and three months post-vaccination. The effectiveness of GonaCon to cause infertility was monitored by quantifying anti-GnRH antibody titres and by using kits to detect cycling and pregnancy. GonaCon-treated cattle showed no injection site reaction, limping, or abnormal behaviour. No differences were observed in all physiological and welfare indicators between control and vaccinated cattle. All control cattle and 4 of the 12 cattle in the Treated group became pregnant. Cattle administered a booster dose had higher anti-GnRH antibody titres than cattle that received one dose. We concluded that GonaCon does not compromise the animals’ welfare and is effective in reducing fertility in cattle. A booster dose is likely to increase the duration of infertility. Further studies are required to assess the feasibility and costs of immunocontraception for controlling free-roaming cattle populations. PMID:25856283

  14. Immunocontraception for managing feral cattle in Hong Kong.

    PubMed

    Massei, Giovanna; Koon, Ka-Kei; Benton, Steven; Brown, Richard; Gomm, Matt; Orahood, Darcy S; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Eckery, Douglas C

    2015-01-01

    Conflicts between human interests and feral cattle in Hong Kong derive from growing numbers of free-roaming cattle. Public antipathy towards lethal population control led the local authorities to consider fertility control to reduce cattle numbers. This study assessed the potential side effects of the immunocontraceptive GonaCon on individual female cattle and established the effectiveness of GonaCon to induce infertility. We evaluated GonaCon in 34 captive cattle assigned to four groups: Control administered a sham solution; Webbed (surgically sterilized through removal of the oviducts), administered one dose of GonaCon; Webbed, administered one dose of GonaCon and a booster dose three months later, and Treated, administered one dose of GonaCon. The side effects of GonaCon were assessed by monitoring injection site, body weight, body condition, size of lymph nodes, body temperature, and feeding behaviour 1 week and 1, 3, 6, 9 and 12 months after vaccination and by haematological and biochemical variables at vaccination and three months post-vaccination. The effectiveness of GonaCon to cause infertility was monitored by quantifying anti-GnRH antibody titres and by using kits to detect cycling and pregnancy. GonaCon-treated cattle showed no injection site reaction, limping, or abnormal behaviour. No differences were observed in all physiological and welfare indicators between control and vaccinated cattle. All control cattle and 4 of the 12 cattle in the Treated group became pregnant. Cattle administered a booster dose had higher anti-GnRH antibody titres than cattle that received one dose. We concluded that GonaCon does not compromise the animals' welfare and is effective in reducing fertility in cattle. A booster dose is likely to increase the duration of infertility. Further studies are required to assess the feasibility and costs of immunocontraception for controlling free-roaming cattle populations. PMID:25856283

  15. Cat scratch disease (image)

    MedlinePlus

    Cat scratch disease is an infectious illness associated with cat scratches, bites, or exposure to cat saliva, causing chronic swelling of the lymph nodes. Cat scratch disease is possibly the most common cause of ...

  16. Cat Scratch Disease

    MedlinePlus

    Cat scratch disease (CSD) is an illness caused by the bacterium Bartonella henselae. Almost half of all cats carry ... infection does not make cats sick. However, the scratch or bite of an infected cat can cause ...

  17. Cat scratch disease (image)

    MedlinePlus

    Cat scratch disease is an infectious illness associated with cat scratches, bites, or exposure to cat saliva, causing chronic swelling of the lymph nodes. Cat scratch disease is possibly the most common cause of chronic ...

  18. Within-Colony Variation in the Immunocompetency of Managed and Feral Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L.) in Different Urban Landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Appler, R. Holden; Frank, Steven D.; Tarpy, David R.

    2015-01-01

    Urbanization has the potential to dramatically affect insect populations worldwide, although its effects on pollinator populations are just beginning to be understood. We compared the immunocompetency of honey bees sampled from feral (wild-living) and managed (beekeeper-owned) honey bee colonies. We sampled foragers from feral and managed colonies in rural, suburban, and urban landscapes in and around Raleigh, NC, USA. We then analyzed adult workers using two standard bioassays for insect immune function (encapsulation response and phenoloxidase activity). We found that there was far more variation within colonies for encapsulation response or phenoloxidase activity than among rural to urban landscapes, and we did not observe any significant difference in immune response between feral and managed bees. These findings suggest that social pollinators, like honey bees, may be sufficiently robust or variable in their immune responses to obscure any subtle effects of urbanization. Additional studies of immune physiology and disease ecology of social and solitary bees in urban, suburban, and natural ecosystems will provide insights into the relative effects of changing urban environments on several important factors that influence pollinator productivity and health. PMID:26529020

  19. Landscape-scale factors affecting feral horse habitat use during summer within the rocky mountain foothills.

    PubMed

    Girard, Tisa L; Bork, Edward W; Nielsen, Scott E; Neilsen, Scott E; Alexander, Mike J

    2013-02-01

    Public lands occupied by feral horses in North America are frequently managed for multiple uses with land use conflict occurring among feral horses, livestock, wildlife, and native grassland conservation. The factors affecting habitat use by horses is critical to understand where conflict may be greatest. We related horse presence and abundance to landscape attributes in a GIS to examine habitat preferences using 98 field plots sampled within a portion of the Rocky Mountain Forest Reserve of SW Alberta, Canada. Horse abundance was greatest in grassland and cut block habitats, and lowest in conifer and mixedwood forest. Resource selection probability functions and count models of faecal abundance indicated that horses preferred areas closer to water, with reduced topographic ruggedness, situated farther from forests, and located farther away from primary roads and trails frequented by recreationalists, but closer to small linear features (i.e. cut lines) that may be used as beneficial travel corridors. Horse presence and abundance were closely related to cattle presence during summer, suggesting that both herbivores utilise the same habitats. Estimates of forage biomass removal (44 %) by mid-July were near maximum acceptable levels. In contrast to horse-cattle associations, horses were negatively associated with wild ungulate abundance, although the mechanism behind this remains unclear and warrants further investigation. Our results indicate that feral horses in SW Alberta exhibit complex habitat selection patterns during spring and summer, including overlap in use with livestock. This finding highlights the need to assess and manage herbivore populations consistent with rangeland carrying capacity and the maintenance of range health. PMID:23183796

  20. Landscape-Scale Factors Affecting Feral Horse Habitat Use During Summer Within The Rocky Mountain Foothills

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girard, Tisa L.; Bork, Edward W.; Neilsen, Scott E.; Alexander, Mike J.

    2013-02-01

    Public lands occupied by feral horses in North America are frequently managed for multiple uses with land use conflict occurring among feral horses, livestock, wildlife, and native grassland conservation. The factors affecting habitat use by horses is critical to understand where conflict may be greatest. We related horse presence and abundance to landscape attributes in a GIS to examine habitat preferences using 98 field plots sampled within a portion of the Rocky Mountain Forest Reserve of SW Alberta, Canada. Horse abundance was greatest in grassland and cut block habitats, and lowest in conifer and mixedwood forest. Resource selection probability functions and count models of faecal abundance indicated that horses preferred areas closer to water, with reduced topographic ruggedness, situated farther from forests, and located farther away from primary roads and trails frequented by recreationalists, but closer to small linear features (i.e. cut lines) that may be used as beneficial travel corridors. Horse presence and abundance were closely related to cattle presence during summer, suggesting that both herbivores utilise the same habitats. Estimates of forage biomass removal (44 %) by mid-July were near maximum acceptable levels. In contrast to horse-cattle associations, horses were negatively associated with wild ungulate abundance, although the mechanism behind this remains unclear and warrants further investigation. Our results indicate that feral horses in SW Alberta exhibit complex habitat selection patterns during spring and summer, including overlap in use with livestock. This finding highlights the need to assess and manage herbivore populations consistent with rangeland carrying capacity and the maintenance of range health.

  1. ISOLATION AND GENETIC CHARACTERIZATION OF TOXOPLASMA GONDII FROM RACCOONS (PROCYON LOTOR), CATS (FELIS DOMESTICUS), STRIPED SKUNK (MEPHITIS MEPHITIS), BLACK BEAR (URSUS AMERICANUS), AND COUGAR (PUMA CONCOLOR) FROM CANADA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Viable Toxoplasma gondii was isolated by bioassay in mice from tissues of 2 feral cats ( Felis domesticus), 2 raccoons (Procyon lotor), a skunk (Mephitis mephitis) trapped in remote locations in Manitoba, Canada, and a black bear (Ursus americanus ) from Kuujjuaq, northern Quebec, Canada. Geno...

  2. Prevalence of Bartonella henselae and Bartonella clarridgeiae in cats and dogs in Korea.

    PubMed

    Kim, You-seok; Seo, Kyoung-won; Lee, Jong-hwa; Choi, Eun-wha; Lee, Hee-woo; Hwang, Cheol-yong; Shin, Nam-shik; Youn, Hee-jeong; Youn, Hwa Young

    2009-03-01

    Blood, saliva, and nail samples were collected from 54 dogs and 151 cats and analyzed for the presence of Bartonella henselae with a novel nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method. Bartonella (B.) henselae was detected in feral cat blood (41.8%), saliva (44.1%), and nail (42.7%) samples. B. henselae was also detected in pet cat blood (33.3%), saliva (43.5%), and nail (29.5%) samples and in pet dog blood (16.6%), saliva (18.5%), and nail (29.6%) samples. Nine samples were infected with B. clarridgeiae and 2 were co-infected with B. henselae and B. clarridgeiae of blood samples of dogs. This report is the first to investigate the prevalence of B. henselae and B. clarridgeiae in dogs and cats in Korea, and suggests that dogs and cats may serve as potential Bartonella reservoirs. PMID:19255530

  3. Construction of a high-density DArTseq SNP-based genetic map and identification of genomic regions with segregation distortion in a genetic population derived from a cross between feral and cultivated-type watermelon.

    PubMed

    Ren, Runsheng; Ray, Rumiana; Li, Pingfang; Xu, Jinhua; Zhang, Man; Liu, Guang; Yao, Xiefeng; Kilian, Andrzej; Yang, Xingping

    2015-08-01

    Watermelon [Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum. & Nakai] is an economically important vegetable crop grown extensively worldwide. To facilitate the identification of agronomically important traits and provide new information for genetic and genomic research on this species, a high-density genetic linkage map of watermelon was constructed using an F2 population derived from a cross between elite watermelon cultivar K3 and wild watermelon germplasm PI 189225. Based on a sliding window approach, a total of 1,161 bin markers representing 3,465 SNP markers were mapped onto 11 linkage groups corresponding to the chromosome pair number of watermelon. The total length of the genetic map is 1,099.2 cM, with an average distance between bins of 1.0 cM. The number of markers in each chromosome varies from 62 in chromosome 07 to 160 in chromosome 05. The length of individual chromosomes ranged between 61.8 cM for chromosome 07 and 140.2 cM for chromosome 05. A total of 616 SNP bin markers showed significant (P < 0.05) segregation distortion across all 11 chromosomes, and 513 (83.3 %) of these distorted loci showed distortion in favor of the elite watermelon cultivar K3 allele and 103 were skewed toward PI 189225. The number of SNPs and InDels per Mb varied considerably across the segregation distorted regions (SDRs) on each chromosome, and a mixture of dense and sparse SNPs and InDel SDRs coexisted on some chromosomes suggesting that SDRs were randomly distributed throughout the genome. Recombination rates varied greatly among each chromosome, from 2.0 to 4.2 centimorgans per megabase (cM/Mb). An inconsistency was found between the genetic and physical positions on the map for a segment on chromosome 11. The high-density genetic map described in the present study will facilitate fine mapping of quantitative trait loci, the identification of candidate genes, map-based cloning, as well as marker-assisted selection (MAS) in watermelon breeding programs. PMID:25702268

  4. Indices using external measurements for assessing fat deposition of adult feral raccoons (Procyon lotor) in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan.

    PubMed

    Kato, Takuya; Uno, Taiki; Fujioka, Yoshiyuki; Hayama, Shin-Ichi

    2012-02-01

    We examined the use of external measurements and relative fat deposition of adult feral raccoons (Procyon lotor) to develop relative indices of body fat deposition in post-growth feral raccoons. From March 2006 to March 2010, 288 adult raccoon carcasses (110 males, 178 females) collected in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, which were determined to be 24 months old, were subjected to external measurements of body weight (BW), girth measurement (GM), and body mass index (BMI). To assess relative body fat deposition, we visually classified abdominal subcutaneous fat into three grades (Visible Fat Index [VFI]: I-III). Significant differences in the means of BW (both sexes:P<0.01), GM (females: P<0.05, males: P<0.01), and BMI (both sexes: P<0.01) were detected between seasons. Notably, the means of BW, GM, and BMI (all, both sexes: P<0.01) differed significantly between VFI grades. However, by discriminant analysis with BW, GM, and BMI as independent variables, we obtained a significant discriminant function (both sexes: P<0.01) for distinguishing VFI I from higher VFI grades, but no significant equation was obtained for distinguishing between VFI II and VFI III. Based on the obtained structure matrix of discriminant analysis, BMI was the most valuable component for the discrimination of VFI grades. Thus, we conclude that BMI is a suitable complementary index for assessing relative body fat deposition of adult feral raccoons in Kanagawa Prefecture and may be generalizable to populations in other areas. PMID:21979454

  5. Distribution and interspecies contact of feral swine and cattle on rangeland in south Texas: implications for disease transmission.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Susan M; Scott, H Morgan; de la Garza, Guadalupe R; Deck, Aubrey L; Cathey, James C

    2010-01-01

    The last outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in the United States occurred in 1929. Since that time, numbers and distribution of feral swine (Sus scrofa) have increased greatly, especially in the southern states. This creates a potential risk to livestock production because swine are susceptible to, and can be carriers of, several economically harmful diseases of livestock. Most importantly, swine are potent amplifiers of FMD virus. In this study, global positioning system (GPS) collars were placed on rangeland cattle (Bos indicus x taurus) and feral swine to determine shared habitat use by these species on a large ranch in south Texas from 2004 to 2006. The aim was to identify locations and rates of interspecies contact that may result in effective transfer of FMD virus, should an outbreak occur. In shrubland and riparian areas, animals were dispersed, so contacts within and between species were relatively infrequent. Indirect contacts, whereby cattle and feral swine used the same location (within 20 m) within a 360-min period, occurred primarily at water sources, and seasonally in irrigated forage fields and along ranch roads. Direct contacts between species (animals <20 m apart and within 15 min) were rare and occurred primarily at water sources. Changes in ranch management practices are suggested to reduce interspecies contact should an FMD disease outbreak occur. This information can also be used to improve current epidemiologic models to better fit free-ranging animal populations. PMID:20090028

  6. Excluding feral swine, javelina, and raccoons from deer bait stations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This paper presents a design, list of materials, and construction procedure for a physical and electric barrier fence to prevent feral swine (Sus scrofa), javelina (Pecari tajacu), raccoons (Procyon lotor), and perhaps other non-target animals from accessing or damaging bait stations designed to adm...

  7. Excluding feral swine, javelina and raccoons from deer bait stations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Here we present a design and construction procedure for a physical and electric barrier fence to prevent feral swine (Sus scrofa), javelina (Pecari tajacu), raccoons (Procyon lotor), and perhaps other non-target animals from accessing or damaging bait stations designed to administer acaricide treatm...

  8. Quarantine protects Falkland Islands (Malvinas) cats from feline coronavirus infection.

    PubMed

    Addie, Diane D; McDonald, Mike; Audhuy, Stéphane; Burr, Paul; Hollins, Jonathan; Kovacic, Rémi; Lutz, Hans; Luxton, Zoe; Mazar, Shlomit; Meli, Marina L

    2012-02-01

    Feline coronavirus (FCoV) causes feline infectious peritonitis (FIP). Since 2002, when 20 cats on the Falkland Islands were found to be FCoV seronegative, only seronegative cats could be imported. Between 2005-2007, 95 pet and 10 feral cats tested negative by indirect immunofluorescence antibody (IFA) analysis using two strains of type II FCoV, two transmissible gastroenteritis virus assays, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and rapid immunomigration test. Twenty-four samples (23%) showed non-specific fluorescence, mostly attributable to anti-nuclear antibodies (ANA). The reason for ANA was unclear: reactive samples were negative for Erhlichia canis antibodies; seven were feline immunodeficiency virus positive, but 15 were negative. It was not possible to determine retrospectively whether the cats had autoimmune disease, hyperthyroidism treatment, or recent vaccination which may also cause ANA. The FCoV/ FIP-free status of the Falkland Islands cats should be maintained by FCoV testing incoming cats. However, ANA can complicate interpretation of IFA tests. PMID:22314098

  9. Contaminant loading in remote Arctic lakes affects cellular stress-related proteins expression in feral charr.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiseman, Steve; Jorgensen, Even H.; Maule, Alec G.; Vijayan, Mathilakath M.

    2011-01-01

    The remote Arctic lakes on Bjornoya Island, Norway, offer a unique opportunity to study possible affect of lifelong contaminant exposure in wild populations of landlocked Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus). This is because Lake Ellasjoen has persistent organic pollutant (POP) levels that are significantly greater than in the nearby Lake Oyangen. We examined whether this differential contaminant loading was reflected in the expression of protein markers of exposure and effect in the native fish. We assessed the expressions of cellular stress markers, including cytochrome P4501A (Cyp1A), heat shock protein 70 (hsp70), and glucocorticoid receptor (GR) in feral charr from the two lakes. The average polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) load in the charr liver from Ellasjoen was approximately 25-fold higher than in individuals from Oyangen. Liver Cyp1A protein expression was significantly higher in individuals from Ellasjoen compared with Oyangen, confirming differential PCB exposure. There was no significant difference in hsp70 protein expression in charr liver between the two lakes. However, brain hsp70 protein expression was significantly elevated in charr from Ellasjoen compared with Oyangen. Also, liver GR protein expression was significantly higher in the Ellasjoen charr compared with Oyangen charr. Taken together, our results suggest changes to cellular stress-related protein expression as a possible adaptation to chronic-contaminant exposure in feral charr in the Norwegian high-Arctic.

  10. In the United States, negligible rates of zoonotic sarcocystosis occur in feral swine that, by contrast, frequently harbour infections with Sarcocystis miescheriana, a related parasite contracted from canids.

    PubMed

    Calero-Bernal, R; Verma, S K; Oliveira, S; Yang, Y; Rosenthal, B M; Dubey, J P

    2015-04-01

    Transmission of pathogens between domestic and wild life animals plays an important role in epidemiology. Feral pig populations are increasing and expanding in the USA, and may constitute a risk to non-biosecure domestic pig facilities by serving as reservoirs for pathogens. We surveyed, for Sarcocystis infection, the myocardium of 1006 feral pigs (Sus scrofa) trapped or hunted in 29 states during the Comprehensive Feral Swine Disease Surveillance Program of the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services unit during 2012-2014. Sarcocysts were detected in histological sections of 25% (251/1006) of myocardium with an average parasitic load/intensity of infection of 3.03 sarcocysts/section (1.5×0.7 cm), and higher prevalence of myocarditis in severe infections. Microscopic examination of pepsin digests of 147 hearts revealed a higher prevalence of Sarcocystis bradyzoites (49%, 72/147) than when diagnosed by histology. A fragment of Sarcocystis 18S rRNA was amplified and digested with a restriction endonuclease, revealing a pattern consistent with Sarcocystis miescheriana in all 44 selected samples. Sequencing 31 of these 44 isolates confirmed their correspondence to S. miescheriana. Thus, S. miescheriana infection, but not the zoonotic parasite Sarcocystis suihominis, appears to be prevalent and widespread in feral pigs in the USA. PMID:25363485

  11. Genetic characterisation of Porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) strains from feral pigs in the Brazilian Pantanal: An opportunity to reconstruct the history of PCV2 evolution.

    PubMed

    Franzo, Giovanni; Cortey, Martí; de Castro, Alessandra Marnie Martins Gomes; Piovezan, Ubiratan; Szabo, Matias Pablo Juan; Drigo, Michele; Segalés, Joaquim; Richtzenhain, Leonardo José

    2015-07-01

    Since its discovery, Porcine circovirus type 2 has emerged as one of the most relevant swine infectious diseases, causing relevant economic losses for the pig industry. While four genotypes were identified, only three (PCV2a, PCV2b and PCV2d) are currently circulating and display a worldwide distribution. Another genotype, PCV2c, has been described only once in Danish archive samples collected between 1980 and 1990. In addition to commercial pigs, PCV2 has been demonstrated to infect wild boars and other wild species, which can potentially serve as a reservoir for domestic populations. In this study, eight sequences obtained from feral pigs in the Pantanal region (Mato Grosso do Sul State, Brazil) were compared with reference sequences and other Brazilian sequences, and the results revealed remarkable genetic diversity, with all four genotypes currently recognised being detected (PCV2a, PCV2b, PCV2c and PCV2d). This finding represents a remarkable discovery, as it is the first detection of PCV2c since 1990 and the first-ever detection of PCV2c in live animals. The peculiar population history and ecological scenario of feral pigs in the Pantanal coupled with the complex, and still only partially known relationship of feral pigs with other PCV2 susceptible species (i.e., domestic pigs, wild boars and peccaries), open exciting questions concerning PCV2 origin and evolution. Overall, the results of the present study led us to form the following hypothesis: the PCV2 strains found in feral pigs may be the last descent of the strains that circulated among European pigs in the past, or they may have infected these feral pigs more recently through a bridge species. PMID:25975522

  12. Detection probability in aerial surveys of feral horses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, Jason I.

    2011-01-01

    Observation bias pervades data collected during aerial surveys of large animals, and although some sources can be mitigated with informed planning, others must be addressed using valid sampling techniques that carefully model detection probability. Nonetheless, aerial surveys are frequently employed to count large mammals without applying such methods to account for heterogeneity in visibility of animal groups on the landscape. This often leaves managers and interest groups at odds over decisions that are not adequately informed. I analyzed detection of feral horse (Equus caballus) groups by dual independent observers from 24 fixed-wing and 16 helicopter flights using mixed-effect logistic regression models to investigate potential sources of observation bias. I accounted for observer skill, population location, and aircraft type in the model structure and analyzed the effects of group size, sun effect (position related to observer), vegetation type, topography, cloud cover, percent snow cover, and observer fatigue on detection of horse groups. The most important model-averaged effects for both fixed-wing and helicopter surveys included group size (fixed-wing: odds ratio = 0.891, 95% CI = 0.850–0.935; helicopter: odds ratio = 0.640, 95% CI = 0.587–0.698) and sun effect (fixed-wing: odds ratio = 0.632, 95% CI = 0.350–1.141; helicopter: odds ratio = 0.194, 95% CI = 0.080–0.470). Observer fatigue was also an important effect in the best model for helicopter surveys, with detection probability declining after 3 hr of survey time (odds ratio = 0.278, 95% CI = 0.144–0.537). Biases arising from sun effect and observer fatigue can be mitigated by pre-flight survey design. Other sources of bias, such as those arising from group size, topography, and vegetation can only be addressed by employing valid sampling techniques such as double sampling, mark–resight (batch-marked animals), mark–recapture (uniquely marked and

  13. Contact heterogeneities in feral swine: implications for disease management and future research

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pepin, Kim; Davis, Amy J.; Beasley, James; Boughton, Raoul; Campbell, Tyler; Cooper, Susan; Gaston, Wes; Hartley, Stephen B.; Kilgo, John C.; Wisely, Samantha; Wyckoff, Christy; VerCauteren, Kurt

    2016-01-01

    Contact rates vary widely among individuals in socially structured wildlife populations. Understanding the interplay of factors responsible for this variation is essential for planning effective disease management. Feral swine (Sus scrofa) are a socially structured species which pose an increasing threat to livestock and human health, and little is known about contact structure. We analyzed 11 GPS data sets from across the United States to understand the interplay of ecological and demographic factors on variation in co-location rates, a proxy for contact rates. Between-sounder contact rates strongly depended on the distance among home ranges (less contact among sounders separated by >2 km; negligible between sounders separated by >6 km), but other factors causing high clustering between groups of sounders also seemed apparent. Our results provide spatial parameters for targeted management actions, identify data gaps that could lead to improved management and provide insight on experimental design for quantitating contact rates and structure.

  14. Bioaccumulation of hydrocarbons in feral and experimental flatfish

    SciTech Connect

    Hellou, J.; Mackay, D.

    1995-12-31

    The uptake of PAC (PAH and PASH) into the muscle of feral and laboratory exposed flatfish is described and modeled using the fugacity approach. Correlation is made between the results obtained from the exposure of winter flounder to a crude oil and the analysis of samples obtained from feral finfish. The feral study involved the collection of American plaice and yellowtail flounder from the Northwest Atlantic during biological surveys. Finfish were pooled according to species, sex, size, season and sampling location. Muscle, liver and gall bladder bile were examined for the presence of saturated and unsaturated hydrocarbons or metabolites. On the other hand after a four month exposure to a crude oil, muscle of winter flounder was analyzed for saturated hydrocarbons and polycyclic aromatic compounds, as well as the gall bladder for bile metabolites. The information obtained in the laboratory experiment allowed a better interpretation of the results observed in the fish sampled from the Northwest Atlantic. The assessment of the fate of hydrocarbons in biota is discussed taking into consideration variables such as: animal size, respiration rate, lipid content of tissue, TOC, K{sub ow} of chemicals and the knowledge of the source and fingerprint of PAH in the Northwest Atlantic environment.

  15. Urbanization Increases Pathogen Pressure on Feral and Managed Honey Bees.

    PubMed

    Youngsteadt, Elsa; Appler, R Holden; López-Uribe, Margarita M; Tarpy, David R; Frank, Steven D

    2015-01-01

    Given the role of infectious disease in global pollinator decline, there is a need to understand factors that shape pathogen susceptibility and transmission in bees. Here we ask how urbanization affects the immune response and pathogen load of feral and managed colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera Linnaeus), the predominant economically important pollinator worldwide. Using quantitative real-time PCR, we measured expression of 4 immune genes and relative abundance of 10 honey bee pathogens. We also measured worker survival in a laboratory bioassay. We found that pathogen pressure on honey bees increased with urbanization and management, and the probability of worker survival declined 3-fold along our urbanization gradient. The effect of management on pathogens appears to be mediated by immunity, with feral bees expressing immune genes at nearly twice the levels of managed bees following an immune challenge. The effect of urbanization, however, was not linked with immunity; instead, urbanization may favor viability and transmission of some disease agents. Feral colonies, with lower disease burdens and stronger immune responses, may illuminate ways to improve honey bee management. The previously unexamined effects of urbanization on honey-bee disease are concerning, suggesting that urban areas may favor problematic diseases of pollinators. PMID:26536606

  16. Urbanization Increases Pathogen Pressure on Feral and Managed Honey Bees

    PubMed Central

    López-Uribe, Margarita M.; Tarpy, David R.; Frank, Steven D.

    2015-01-01

    Given the role of infectious disease in global pollinator decline, there is a need to understand factors that shape pathogen susceptibility and transmission in bees. Here we ask how urbanization affects the immune response and pathogen load of feral and managed colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera Linnaeus), the predominant economically important pollinator worldwide. Using quantitative real-time PCR, we measured expression of 4 immune genes and relative abundance of 10 honey bee pathogens. We also measured worker survival in a laboratory bioassay. We found that pathogen pressure on honey bees increased with urbanization and management, and the probability of worker survival declined 3-fold along our urbanization gradient. The effect of management on pathogens appears to be mediated by immunity, with feral bees expressing immune genes at nearly twice the levels of managed bees following an immune challenge. The effect of urbanization, however, was not linked with immunity; instead, urbanization may favor viability and transmission of some disease agents. Feral colonies, with lower disease burdens and stronger immune responses, may illuminate ways to improve honey bee management. The previously unexamined effects of urbanization on honey-bee disease are concerning, suggesting that urban areas may favor problematic diseases of pollinators. PMID:26536606

  17. Examining ecological consequences of feral horse grazing using exclosures.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beever, E.A.; Brussard, P.F.

    2000-01-01

    Although feral horses have inhabited western North America since the end of the 16th century, relatively little synecological research has been conducted to quantitatively characterize how they interact with ecosystem components. Because feral horses exhibit watering behavior markedly different from that of domestic cattle, it is particularly important to evaluate response of ecosystem elements near water sources to horse use. To assess this response, we performed live-trapping of small mammals and 2-tiered vegetative sampling in 2 mountain ranges in central Nevada in the interior Great Basin, USA. At low elevations, plots around horse-excluded springs exhibited notably greater plant species richness, percent cover, and abundance of grasses and shrubs, as well as more small mammal burrow entrances than plots at horse-grazed springs. At high elevations, meadows protected from grazing exhibited maximum vegetation heights 2.8 times greater than vegetation grazed by horses only and 4.5 times greater than vegetation grazed by horses and cattle. Species richness in quadrats was most different between the horse-and-cattle-grazed meadow and its ungrazed counterpart, suggesting the possibility of synergistic effects of horse and cattle grazing in the same location. This study, the first in the Great Basin to investigate quantitatively ecosystem consequences of feral horse use with exclosures, represents a preliminary step in identifying factors that determine the magnitude of horse grazing impacts. 

  18. Comparison of the GnRH-stimulation test and a semiquantitative quick test for LH to diagnose presence of ovaries in the female domestic cat.

    PubMed

    Rohlertz, M; Ström Holst, B; Axnér, E

    2012-12-01

    It is generally recommended that female cats not intended for planned breeding are spayed to reduce the population of feral cats and also because spaying is beneficial for the long-term health of the individual. For female cats of unknown origin or with estrous symptoms after spaying there is a need for a reliable method to diagnose or rule out the presence of ovaries to avoid unnecessary surgery. Methods previously recommended include vaginal cytology, evaluation of serum estradiol concentration during suspected estrus, induction of ovulation and subsequent evaluation of progesterone, or explorative laparotomy. These methods have the disadvantages that an accurate diagnosis only can be made during estrus or that an invasive procedure is required. Previously, the use of a GnRH challenge test and a semiquantitative LH test have been reported. Our aim was to compare these two methods. We therefore divided 31 female cats in two groups: (1) intact nonestrous females (N = 16), and (2) previously ovariohysterectomized females (N = 15). A blood sample was collected (Time 0) and 0.4 μg/kg buserelin (Receptal; Intervet, Danderyd, Sweden) was injected im. A new blood sample was collected 120 min after the injection. A drop of serum from the sample collected at Time 0 was placed on the LH test (Witness LH; Synbiotics, Corp., San Diego, CA, USA) and the result was evaluated as negative or positive. The remaining serum was frozen and analyzed for estradiol in one batch. Serum estradiol before buserelin stimulation ranged between 5 and 45 pmol/L (N = 14) in intact nonestrous queens and between 2 and 6 pmol/L (N = 15) in ovariohysterectomized females. Estradiol in samples collected after 120 min ranged between 12 and 51 pmol/L (N = 16) in intact queens and between 1 and 7 pmol/L (N = 15) in spayed cats giving a sensitivity and specificity of 100% for the buserelin stimulation test at a cutoff value of 11 pmol/L. All intact queens were negative in the semiquantitative LH test

  19. Cat-Scratch Disease

    MedlinePlus

    ... and how do people get it? Cat-scratch disease is an infection caused by a type of bacteria (germs) carried in cat saliva. This bacteria is called Bartonella henselae and can be passed from a cat to a human. Doctors and ... from fleas. Cat-scratch disease is not a severe illness in people who ...

  20. Cat and Dog Bites

    MedlinePlus

    MENU Return to Web version Cat and Dog Bites Cat and Dog Bites How should I take care of a bite from a cat or a dog? Whether from a family pet or a neighborhood stray, cat and dog bites are common. Here are some ...

  1. Modeling feral alfalfa (Medicago sativa subsp. sativa L.) occurrence using topographical and environmental variables

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Because alfalfa is a perennial species cross pollinated by bees and can establish along roadsides and ruderal areas, there is concern that feral plants can serve as reservoirs and conduits for transgenic genes. The objective of this study was to survey feral alfalfa in alfalfa seed production areas ...

  2. Comparative Studies of Predation Among Feral, Commercially-Purchased, and Laboratory-Reared Predators

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The predatory activities of commercially-purchased Hippodamia convergens Guèrin-Mèneville and two laboratory-reared strains of Geocoris punctipes (Say) were compared with their feral counterparts. In single prey choice feeding tests, commercially-purchased and feral H. convergens were provided copi...

  3. Influences of immunocontraception on time budgets, social behavior, and body condition in feral horses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, J.I.; Cade, B.S.; Hobbs, N.T.

    2010-01-01

    Managers concerned with shrinking habitats and limited resources for wildlife seek effective tools for limiting population growth in some species. Fertility control is one such tool, yet little is known about its impacts on the behavioral ecology of wild, free-roaming animals. We investigated influences of the immunocontraceptive porcine zona pellucida (PZP) on individual and social behavior in bands of feral horses (Equus caballus) in three discrete populations and used 14 hierarchical mixed effect models to gain insight into the influences of PZP treatment on feral horse behavior. A model of body condition was the strongest predictor of feeding, resting, maintenance, and social behaviors, with treated females allocating their time similarly to control females. Time spent feeding declined 11.4% from low condition to high condition females (F1,154 = 26.427, P < 0.001) and was partially reciprocated by a 6.0% increase in resting (F1,154 = 7.629, P = 0.006), 0.9% increase in maintenance (F1,154 = 7.028, P = 0.009), and 1.8% increase in social behavior (F1,154 = 15.064, P < 0.001). There was no difference detected in body condition of treated versus control females (F1,154 = 0.033, P = 0.856), but females with a dependent foal had lower body condition than those without a foal (F1,154 = 4.512, P = 0.038). Herding behavior was best explained by a model of treatment and the interaction of band fidelity and foal presence (AICc weight = 0.660) which estimated no difference in rate of herding behavior directed toward control versus treated females (F1,102 = 0.196, P = 0.659), but resident females without a dependent foal were herded 50.9% more than resident females with a foal (F3,102 = 8.269, P < 0.001). Treated females received 54.5% more reproductive behaviors from stallions than control mares (F1,105 = 5.155, P = 0.025), with the model containing only treatment being the most-supported (AICc weight = 0.530). Treated and control females received harem-tending behaviors

  4. Determinants of Cat Choice and Outcomes for Adult Cats and Kittens Adopted from an Australian Animal Shelter.

    PubMed

    Zito, Sarah; Paterson, Mandy; Vankan, Dianne; Morton, John; Bennett, Pauleen; Phillips, Clive

    2015-01-01

    The percentage of adult cats euthanized in animal shelters is greater than that of kittens because adult cats are less likely to be adopted. This study aimed to provide evidence to inform the design of strategies to encourage adult cat adoptions. One such strategy is to discount adoption prices, but there are concerns that this may result in poor adoption outcomes. We surveyed 382 cat adopters at the time of adoption, to assess potential determinants of adopters' cat age group choice (adult or kitten) and, for adult cat adopters, the price they are willing to pay. The same respondents were surveyed again 6-12 months after the adoption to compare outcomes between cat age groups and between adult cats in two price categories. Most adopters had benevolent motivations for adopting from the shelter and had put considerable thought into the adoption and requirements for responsible ownership. However, adult cat adopters were more likely to have been influenced by price than kitten adopters. Adoption outcomes were generally positive for both adult cats and kittens and for adult cats adopted at low prices. The latter finding alleviates concerns about the outcomes of "low-cost" adoptions in populations, such as the study population, and lends support for the use of "low-cost" adoptions as an option for attempting to increase adoption rates. In addition, the results provide information that can be used to inform future campaigns aimed at increasing the number of adult cat adoptions, particularly in devising marketing strategies for adult cats. PMID:26479236

  5. Practical Physical and Behavioral Measures to Assess the Socialization Spectrum of Cats in a Shelter-Like Setting during a Three Day Period

    PubMed Central

    Slater, Margaret; Garrison, Laurie; Miller, Katherine; Weiss, Emily; Makolinski, Kathleen; Drain, Natasha; Mirontshuk, Alex

    2013-01-01

    Simple Summary Animal welfare organizations accept large numbers of cats with no known history. Because shelters are often highly stressful environments for cats, it is likely to be difficult to differentiate a frightened cat that is socialized to humans from a feral cat that is not. However, this distinction can help channel cats into appropriate dispositions. We conducted structured assessments to measure various behaviors and their potential to distinguish socialization levels. Our results show that a specific set of behaviors are only exhibited by more socialized cats. Many cats needed time to adjust to the shelter-type setting to show these socialized behaviors. Abstract Animal welfare organizations routinely accept large numbers of cats with unknown histories, and whose backgrounds vary from well-socialized pets to cats that have had little or no contact with humans. Agencies are challenged with making the determination of socialization level in a highly stressful environment where cats are often too frightened to show typical behaviors. A variety of structured behavioral assessments were conducted in a shelter-like environment, from intake through a three day holding period, on cats from the full range of socialization as reported by their caregivers. Our results show that certain behaviors such as rubbing, playing, chirping, having the tail up or being at the front of the cage were found to be unique to More Socialized cats. While not all more socialized cats showed these behaviors, cats that did were socialized. Assessing the cats throughout the three day period was beneficial in eliciting key behaviors from shyer and more frightened cats. These results will be used in future work to develop an assessment tool to identify the socialization status of cats as a standardized guide for transparent and reliable disposition decisions and higher live release rates for cats in animal shelters. PMID:26479757

  6. Use of group-randomized trials in pet population research.

    PubMed

    Lord, L K; Wittum, T E; Scarlett, J M

    2007-12-14

    Communities invest considerable resources to address the animal welfare and public health concerns resulting from unwanted pet animals. Traditionally, research in this area has enumerated the pet-owning population, described pet population dynamics in individual communities, and estimated national euthanasia figures. Recent research has investigated the human-animal bond and explored the community implications of managed feral cat colonies. These reports have utilized traditional epidemiologic study designs to generate observational data to describe populations and measure associations. However, rigorous scientific evaluations of potential interventions at the group level have been lacking. Group-randomized trials have been used extensively in public health research to evaluate interventions that change a population's behavior, not just the behavior of selected individuals. We briefly describe the strengths and limitations of group-randomized trials as they are used to evaluate interventions that promote social and behavioral changes in the human public health field. We extend these examples to suggest the appropriate application of group-randomized trials for pet population dynamics research. PMID:17707934

  7. Mycobacterial disease in a population of 339 cats in Great Britain: II. Histopathology of 225 cases, and treatment and outcome of 184 cases.

    PubMed

    Gunn-Moore, Danièlle A; McFarland, Sarah E; Schock, Alex; Brewer, Jacqueline I; Crawshaw, Tim R; Clifton-Hadley, Richard S; Shaw, Darren J

    2011-12-01

    This study investigated 339 cases of feline mycobacterial infection, with histopathology findings from 225 cases, and treatment and outcome information from 184 cases. Tissue samples from cats with cutaneous lesions or suspicious masses at exploratory laparotomy were submitted to the Veterinary Laboratories Agency for mycobacterial culture over a 4-year period to December 2008. The study reviewed the files for information about histopathology, treatment and outcome, and blindly reviewed histopathological changes (including staining for acid-fast bacteria [AFB]) in a sub-set of 45 cases. When a cat is suspected of having a mycobacterial infection, accurate identification of the species involved helps to determine possible treatment options and prognosis. The study confirmed that histopathology and the presence of AFB are useful tools in the recognition of mycobacterial infection. Unfortunately, they did little to help determine the species of mycobacteria involved. The study identified a group of cats that were negative for AFB at the primary laboratory, but from which mycobacteria could be cultured; commonly Mycobacterium bovis or Mycobacterium microti. The study also identified a group of cats which where culture negative, despite typical signs of mycobacterial infection and positive AFB staining. Many cases responded favourably to treatment (56% of the cases where information was available), and many cats gained complete remission (42%). However, relapses were common (64%) and often followed by pulmonary and/or systemic spread that may have resulted from treatment with short courses of single drugs. This study shows that the diagnosis and treatment of feline mycobacteriosis is complex and challenging. PMID:22061264

  8. Cat Scratch Disease

    MedlinePlus

    Cat scratch disease (CSD) is an illness caused by the bacterium Bartonella henselae. Almost half of all cats carry the infection ... symptoms of CSD, call your doctor. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

  9. Cat-Scratch Disease

    MedlinePlus

    ... Patients Infants and Young Children Publications & Materials Announcements Cat-Scratch Disease Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir ( ... play and learn how to attack prey. How cats and people become infected Kitten playing with a ...

  10. Diet Overlap and Foraging Activity between Feral Pigs and Native Peccaries in the Pantanal.

    PubMed

    Galetti, Mauro; Camargo, Hiléia; Siqueira, Tadeu; Keuroghlian, Alexine; Donatti, Camila I; Jorge, Maria Luisa S P; Pedrosa, Felipe; Kanda, Claudia Z; Ribeiro, Milton C

    2015-01-01

    Inter-specific competition is considered one of the main selective pressures affecting species distribution and coexistence. Different species vary in the way they forage in order to minimize encounters with their competitors and with their predators. However, it is still poorly known whether and how native species change their foraging behavior in the presence of exotic species, particularly in South America. Here we compare diet overlap of fruits and foraging activity period of two sympatric native ungulates (the white-lipped peccary, Tayassu pecari, and the collared peccary, Pecari tajacu) with the invasive feral pig (Sus scrofa) in the Brazilian Pantanal. We found high diet overlap between white-lipped peccaries and feral pigs, but low overlap between collared peccaries and feral pigs. Furthermore, we found that feral pigs may influence the foraging period of both native peccaries, but in different ways. In the absence of feral pigs, collared peccary activity peaks in the early evening, possibly allowing them to avoid white-lipped peccary activity peaks, which occur in the morning. In the presence of feral pigs, collared peccaries forage mostly in early morning, while white-lipped peccaries forage throughout the day. Our results indicate that collared peccaries may avoid foraging at the same time as white-lipped peccaries. However, they forage during the same periods as feral pigs, with whom they have lower diet overlap. Our study highlights how an exotic species may alter interactions between native species by interfering in their foraging periods. PMID:26536608

  11. Diet Overlap and Foraging Activity between Feral Pigs and Native Peccaries in the Pantanal

    PubMed Central

    Galetti, Mauro; Camargo, Hiléia; Siqueira, Tadeu; Keuroghlian, Alexine; Donatti, Camila I.; Jorge, Maria Luisa S. P.; Pedrosa, Felipe; Kanda, Claudia Z.; Ribeiro, Milton C.

    2015-01-01

    Inter-specific competition is considered one of the main selective pressures affecting species distribution and coexistence. Different species vary in the way they forage in order to minimize encounters with their competitors and with their predators. However, it is still poorly known whether and how native species change their foraging behavior in the presence of exotic species, particularly in South America. Here we compare diet overlap of fruits and foraging activity period of two sympatric native ungulates (the white-lipped peccary, Tayassu pecari, and the collared peccary, Pecari tajacu) with the invasive feral pig (Sus scrofa) in the Brazilian Pantanal. We found high diet overlap between white-lipped peccaries and feral pigs, but low overlap between collared peccaries and feral pigs. Furthermore, we found that feral pigs may influence the foraging period of both native peccaries, but in different ways. In the absence of feral pigs, collared peccary activity peaks in the early evening, possibly allowing them to avoid white-lipped peccary activity peaks, which occur in the morning. In the presence of feral pigs, collared peccaries forage mostly in early morning, while white-lipped peccaries forage throughout the day. Our results indicate that collared peccaries may avoid foraging at the same time as white-lipped peccaries. However, they forage during the same periods as feral pigs, with whom they have lower diet overlap. Our study highlights how an exotic species may alter interactions between native species by interfering in their foraging periods. PMID:26536608

  12. Determining the persistence of Mycobacterium bovis bacille Calmette-Guerin Danish in select tissues of orally vaccinated feral swine (Sus scrofa ssp.).

    PubMed

    Nol, Pauline; Robbe-Austerman, Suelee; Rhyan, Jack C; McCollum, Matt P; Triantis, Joni M; Beltrán-Beck, Beatriz; Salman, Mo D

    2016-02-01

    Mycobacterium bovis bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) is being considered for vaccination of feral swine (Sus scrofa ssp.). Since BCG is a live bacterium, evaluation of its safety and persistence in tissues is important. Fifteen feral swine received approximately 4.5 × 10(6) colony forming units of BCG Danish via oral bait. Four animals received bait without BCG. At 1, 3, 6, and 9 months post-vaccination, four vaccinates were euthanized. Non-vaccinates were euthanized at 9 months. Clinical signs were not noted in vaccinated pigs at any time. Tissues from all 20 pigs were culture-negative for mycobacteria. Based on our data, BCG is safe and appears not to persist in feral swine tissues after one month post-oral vaccination. However, further work must be performed at higher doses, and on a larger number of animals representing the target population, and further evaluation of persistence in tissues within the first month post-vaccination is needed. PMID:26850536

  13. Impacts of feral horses on a desert environment

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Free-ranging horses (Equus caballus) in North America are considered to be feral animals since they are descendents of non-native domestic horses introduced to the continent. We conducted a study in a southern California desert to understand how feral horse movements and horse feces impacted this arid ecosystem. We evaluated five parameters susceptible to horse trampling: soil strength, vegetation cover, percent of nonnative vegetation, plant species diversity, and macroinvertebrate abundance. We also tested whether or not plant cover and species diversity were affected by the presence of horse feces. Results Horse trailing resulted in reduced vegetation cover, compacted soils, and in cases of intermediate intensity disturbance, increased plant species diversity. The presence of horse feces did not affect plant cover, but it did increase native plant diversity. Conclusion Adverse impacts, such as soil compaction and increased erosion potential, were limited to established horse trails. In contrast, increased native plant diversity near trails and feces could be viewed as positive outcomes. Extensive trailing can result in a surprisingly large impact area: we estimate that < 30 horses used > 25 km2 of trails in our study area. PMID:19903355

  14. Getting a CAT Scan

    MedlinePlus

    ... Here's Help White House Lunch Recipes Getting a CAT Scan (Video) KidsHealth > For Kids > Getting a CAT Scan (Video) Print A A A Text Size en español Obtención de una tomografía computada (video) CAT stands for "computerized axial tomography." Translated, that means ...

  15. Audiogenic reflex seizures in cats

    PubMed Central

    Lowrie, Mark; Bessant, Claire; Harvey, Robert J; Sparkes, Andrew; Garosi, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    Objectives This study aimed to characterise feline audiogenic reflex seizures (FARS). Methods An online questionnaire was developed to capture information from owners with cats suffering from FARS. This was collated with the medical records from the primary veterinarian. Ninety-six cats were included. Results Myoclonic seizures were one of the cardinal signs of this syndrome (90/96), frequently occurring prior to generalised tonic–clonic seizures (GTCSs) in this population. Other features include a late onset (median 15 years) and absence seizures (6/96), with most seizures triggered by high-frequency sounds amid occasional spontaneous seizures (up to 20%). Half the population (48/96) had hearing impairment or were deaf. One-third of cats (35/96) had concurrent diseases, most likely reflecting the age distribution. Birmans were strongly represented (30/96). Levetiracetam gave good seizure control. The course of the epilepsy was non-progressive in the majority (68/96), with an improvement over time in some (23/96). Only 33/96 and 11/90 owners, respectively, felt the GTCSs and myoclonic seizures affected their cat’s quality of life (QoL). Despite this, many owners (50/96) reported a slow decline in their cat’s health, becoming less responsive (43/50), not jumping (41/50), becoming uncoordinated or weak in the pelvic limbs (24/50) and exhibiting dramatic weight loss (39/50). These signs were exclusively reported in cats experiencing seizures for >2 years, with 42/50 owners stating these signs affected their cat’s QoL. Conclusions and relevance In gathering data on audiogenic seizures in cats, we have identified a new epilepsy syndrome named FARS with a geriatric onset. Further studies are warranted to investigate potential genetic predispositions to this condition. PMID:25916687

  16. Pulmonary thromboembolism in cats.

    PubMed

    Schermerhorn, Thomas; Pembleton-Corbett, Julie R; Kornreich, Bruce

    2004-01-01

    Pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE) is rarely diagnosed in cats, and the clinical features of the disease are not well known. PTE was diagnosed at postmortem examination in 17 cats, a prevalence of 0.06% over a 24-year period. The age of affected cats ranged from 10 months to 18 years, although young (<4 years) and old (>10 years) cats were more commonly affected than were middle-aged cats. Males and females were equally affected. The majority of cats with PTE (n = 16) had concurrent disease, which was often severe. The most common diseases identified in association with PTE were neoplasia, anemia of unidentified cause, and pancreatitis. Cats with glomerulonephritis, encephalitis, pneumonia, heart disease, and hepatic lipidosis were also represented in this study. Most cats with PTE demonstrated dyspnea and respiratory distress before death or euthanasia, but PTE was not recognized ante mortem in any cat studied. In conclusion, PTE can affect cats of any age and is associated with a variety of systemic and inflammatory disorders. It is recommended that the same clinical criteria used to increase the suspicion of PTE in dogs should also be applied to cats. PMID:15320593

  17. Feral biofuel crop effects in constructed wet prairie and oak savannah communities

    EPA Science Inventory

    We examined the potential effects of feral biofuel crop escapes on constructed plant communities growing in outdoor mesocosms. Mesocosms containing wet prairie or oak savannah communities were exposed to two temperature levels (ambient and elevated) and two moisture levels (cont...

  18. Widespread detection of antibodies to Leptospira in feral swine in the United States.

    PubMed

    Pedersen, K; Pabilonia, K L; Anderson, T D; Bevins, S N; Hicks, C R; Kloft, J M; Deliberto, T J

    2015-07-01

    As feral swine continue to expand their geographical range and distribution across the United States, their involvement in crop damage, livestock predation, and pathogen transmission is likely to increase. Despite the relatively recent discovery of feral swine involvement in the aetiology of a variety of pathogens, their propensity to transmit and carry a wide variety of pathogens is disconcerting. We examined sera from 2055 feral swine for antibody presence to six serovars of Leptospira that can also infect humans, livestock or domestic animals. About 13% of all samples tested positive for at least one serovar, suggesting that Leptospira infection is common in feral swine. Further studies to identify the proportion of actively infected animals are needed to more fully understand the risk they pose. PMID:25518910

  19. Whole Genome Sequencing Identifies a Missense Mutation in HES7 Associated with Short Tails in Asian Domestic Cats

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Xiao; Sun, Xin; Hu, Xue-Song; Zhuang, Yan; Liu, Yue-Chen; Meng, Hao; Miao, Lin; Yu, He; Luo, Shu-Jin

    2016-01-01

    Domestic cats exhibit abundant variations in tail morphology and serve as an excellent model to study the development and evolution of vertebrate tails. Cats with shortened and kinked tails were first recorded in the Malayan archipelago by Charles Darwin in 1868 and remain quite common today in Southeast and East Asia. To elucidate the genetic basis of short tails in Asian cats, we built a pedigree of 13 cats segregating at the trait with a founder from southern China and performed linkage mapping based on whole genome sequencing data from the pedigree. The short-tailed trait was mapped to a 5.6 Mb region of Chr E1, within which the substitution c. 5T > C in the somite segmentation-related gene HES7 was identified as the causal mutation resulting in a missense change (p.V2A). Validation in 245 unrelated cats confirmed the correlation between HES7-c. 5T > C and Chinese short-tailed feral cats as well as the Japanese Bobtail breed, indicating a common genetic basis of the two. In addition, some of our sampled kinked-tailed cats could not be explained by either HES7 or the Manx-related T-box, suggesting at least three independent events in the evolution of domestic cats giving rise to short-tailed traits. PMID:27560986

  20. Whole Genome Sequencing Identifies a Missense Mutation in HES7 Associated with Short Tails in Asian Domestic Cats.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xiao; Sun, Xin; Hu, Xue-Song; Zhuang, Yan; Liu, Yue-Chen; Meng, Hao; Miao, Lin; Yu, He; Luo, Shu-Jin

    2016-01-01

    Domestic cats exhibit abundant variations in tail morphology and serve as an excellent model to study the development and evolution of vertebrate tails. Cats with shortened and kinked tails were first recorded in the Malayan archipelago by Charles Darwin in 1868 and remain quite common today in Southeast and East Asia. To elucidate the genetic basis of short tails in Asian cats, we built a pedigree of 13 cats segregating at the trait with a founder from southern China and performed linkage mapping based on whole genome sequencing data from the pedigree. The short-tailed trait was mapped to a 5.6 Mb region of Chr E1, within which the substitution c. 5T > C in the somite segmentation-related gene HES7 was identified as the causal mutation resulting in a missense change (p.V2A). Validation in 245 unrelated cats confirmed the correlation between HES7-c. 5T > C and Chinese short-tailed feral cats as well as the Japanese Bobtail breed, indicating a common genetic basis of the two. In addition, some of our sampled kinked-tailed cats could not be explained by either HES7 or the Manx-related T-box, suggesting at least three independent events in the evolution of domestic cats giving rise to short-tailed traits. PMID:27560986

  1. Feral genetically modified herbicide tolerant oilseed rape from seed import spills: are concerns scientifically justified?

    PubMed

    Devos, Yann; Hails, Rosemary S; Messéan, Antoine; Perry, Joe N; Squire, Geoffrey R

    2012-02-01

    One of the concerns surrounding the import (for food and feed uses or processing) of genetically modified herbicide tolerant (GMHT) oilseed rape is that, through seed spillage, the herbicide tolerance (HT) trait will escape into agricultural or semi-natural habitats, causing environmental or economic problems. Based on these concerns, three EU countries have invoked national safeguard clauses to ban the marketing of specific GMHT oilseed rape events on their territory. However, the scientific basis for the environmental and economic concerns posed by feral GMHT oilseed rape resulting from seed import spills is debatable. While oilseed rape has characteristics such as secondary dormancy and small seed size that enable it to persist and be redistributed in the landscape, the presence of ferals is not in itself an environmental or economic problem. Crucially, feral oilseed rape has not become invasive outside cultivated and ruderal habitats, and HT traits are not likely to result in increased invasiveness. Feral GMHT oilseed rape has the potential to introduce HT traits to volunteer weeds in agricultural fields, but would only be amplified if the herbicides to which HT volunteers are tolerant were used routinely in the field. However, this worst-case scenario is most unlikely, as seed import spills are mostly confined to port areas. Economic concerns revolve around the potential for feral GMHT oilseed rape to contribute to GM admixtures in non-GM crops. Since feral plants derived from cultivation (as distinct from import) occur at too low a frequency to affect the coexistence threshold of 0.9% in the EU, it can be concluded that feral GMHT plants resulting from seed import spills will have little relevance as a potential source of pollen or seed for GM admixture. This paper concludes that feral oilseed rape in Europe should not be routinely managed, and certainly not in semi-natural habitats, as the benefits of such action would not outweigh the negative effects of

  2. Addressing feral and wild animal threats during deployment: the distinction between animal control and rabies control.

    PubMed

    Dunton, Raymond F; Sargent, Gerald R

    2009-01-01

    Feral and wild animal control is a critical component of force health protection during troop deployments. The primary goal of animal control during a military deployment is to limit human injury or disease by reducing the likelihood of human-animal contact on US bases. For deployed US military forces, animal control will often be necessary, and trapping and euthanasia will remain the standard. In contrast, a rabies control program focuses on reducing disease incidence in an animal population with a subsequent reduction in rabies risk to military personnel. A successful rabies control program requires several components that typically are not possible in areas where the US Army deploys. The responsibility for animal control during an Army deployment has historically fallen to Army Preventive Medicine Sciences officers (Area of Concentration 67C). Understanding that the deployed US Army conducts animal control to limit human-animal contact, and also that it is generally not possible to mount a successful rabies control program on US contingency bases in the absence of an established, mature national plan will ensure that we are doing all we can to protect Soldiers from animal injury and disease transmission. PMID:20084736

  3. Cytochrome P450IA mRNA expression in feral Hudson River tomcod

    SciTech Connect

    Kreamer, G.L.; Squibb, K.; Gioeli, D.; Garte, S.J.; Wirgin, I. )

    1991-06-01

    The authors sought to determine if levels of cytochrome P450IA gene expression are environmentally induced in feral populations of Hudson River tomcod, a cancer prone fish, and whether laboratory exposure of tomcod to artificially spiked and naturally contaminated Hudson sediments can elicit a significant response. Using Northern blot analysis, they found levels of P450IA mRNA in tomcod collected from two Hudson River sites higher than those in tomcod from a river in Maine. Depuration of environmentally induced Hudson tomcod P450IA mRNA was rapid, with an initial detectable decline in P450 gene expression by 8 hr and basal levels reached by 5 days. Intraperitoneal injection of {beta}-napthoflavone in depurated Hudson tomcod resulted in a 15-fold induction of P450 gene expression within 26 hr. Exposure of depurated Hudson tomcod to natural sediment spiked with two PAHs resulted in a 7-fold induction of P450 gene expression. Exposure of depurated tomcod to sediment from a contaminated Hudson site also resulted in a 7- to 15-fold induction of P450IA mRNA expression. Northern blot analysis revealed a second polymorphic cytochrome P450IA mRNA band in some tomcod which was also detected by Southern blot analysis. Induction of cytochrome P450IA mRNA in Atlantic tomcod may provide a sensitive biomarker of environmentally relevant concentrations of some pollutants in the Hudson and other northeastern tidal rivers.

  4. Detection of feral transgenic oilseed rape with multiple-herbicide resistance in Japan.

    PubMed

    Aono, Mitsuko; Wakiyama, Seiji; Nagatsu, Masato; Nakajima, Nobuyoshi; Tamaoki, Masanori; Kubo, Akihiro; Saji, Hikaru

    2006-01-01

    Repeated monitoring for escaped transgenic crop plants is sometimes necessary, especially in cases when the crop has not been approved for release into the environment. Transgenic oilseed rape (Brassica napus) was detected along roadsides in central Japan in a previous study. The goal of the current study was to monitor the distribution of transgenic oilseed rape and occurrence of hybridization of transgenic B. napus with feral populations of its closely related species (B. rapa and B. juncea) in the west of Japan in 2005. The progenies of 50 B. napus, 82 B. rapa and 283 B. juncea maternal plants from 95 sampling sites in seven port areas were screened for herbicide-resistance. Transgenic herbicide-resistant seeds were detected from 12 B. napus maternal plants growing at seven sampling sites in two port areas. A portion of the progeny from two transgenic B. napus plants had both glyphosate-resistance and glufosinate-resistance transgenes. Therefore, two types of transgenic B. napus plants are likely to have outcrossed with each other, since the double-herbicide-resistant transgenic strain of oilseed rape has not been developed intentionally for commercial purposes. As found in the previous study, no transgenic seeds were detected from B. rapa or B. juncea, and more extensive sampling is needed to determine whether introgression into these wild species has occurred. PMID:17328854

  5. Feral Pigeons (Columba livia) Prefer Genetically Similar Mates despite Inbreeding Depression.

    PubMed

    Jacob, Gwenaël; Prévot, Anne-Caroline; Baudry, Emmanuelle

    2016-01-01

    Avoidance of mating between related individuals is usually considered adaptive because it decreases the probability of inbreeding depression in offspring. However, mating between related partners can be adaptive if outbreeding depression is stronger than inbreeding depression or if females gain inclusive fitness benefits by mating with close kin. In the present study, we used microsatellite data to infer the parentage of juveniles born in a French colony of feral pigeons, which allowed us to deduce parent pairs. Despite detectable inbreeding depression, we found that pairwise relatedness between mates was significantly higher than between nonmates, with a mean coefficient of relatedness between mates of 0.065, approximately half the theoretical value for first cousins. This higher relatedness between mates cannot be explained by spatial genetic structure in this colonial bird; it therefore probably results from an active choice. As inbreeding but not outbreeding depression is observed in the study population, this finding accords with the idea that mating with genetically similar mates can confer a benefit in terms of inclusive fitness. Our results and published evidence suggest that preference for related individuals as mates might be relatively frequent in birds. PMID:27588754

  6. Zoonotic diseases associated with free-roaming cats.

    PubMed

    Gerhold, R W; Jessup, D A

    2013-05-01

    Free-roaming cat populations have been identified as a significant public health threat and are a source for several zoonotic diseases including rabies, toxoplasmosis, cutaneous larval migrans because of various nematode parasites, plague, tularemia and murine typhus. Several of these diseases are reported to cause mortality in humans and can cause other important health issues including abortion, blindness, pruritic skin rashes and other various symptoms. A recent case of rabies in a young girl from California that likely was transmitted by a free-roaming cat underscores that free-roaming cats can be a source of zoonotic diseases. Increased attention has been placed on trap-neuter-release (TNR) programmes as a viable tool to manage cat populations. However, some studies have shown that TNR leads to increased immigration of unneutered cats into neutered populations as well as increased kitten survival in neutered groups. These compensatory mechanisms in neutered groups leading to increased kitten survival and immigration would confound rabies vaccination campaigns and produce naïve populations of cats that can serve as source of zoonotic disease agents owing to lack of immunity. This manuscript is a review of the various diseases of free-roaming cats and the public health implications associated with the cat populations. PMID:22830565

  7. The contribution of cat owners' attitudes and behaviours to the free-roaming cat overpopulation in Tel Aviv, Israel.

    PubMed

    Finkler, Hilit; Terkel, Joseph

    2012-04-01

    The attitudes and behaviours of cat owners in regard to treatment of cats may have a cumulative effect on the food availability, reproduction, density and welfare of the free-roaming cat population and thus also on the extent of cat overpopulation. Understanding this is thus a vital step in the a priori planning of cat management programs on any scale, as well as in developing public education programs on this issue. Although recent years have seen an accumulation of knowledge in regard to cat owners' attitudes and behaviours, the findings vary among countries and locations and in Israel this has never been investigated systematically. Using a questionnaire provided to cat owners in veterinary clinics, this study aimed at identifying those attitudes and behaviours that may be contributing to cat overpopulation in Tel Aviv, Israel, and at exploring the socio-economic factors that influence this problem. The findings show that the influential factors can be predicted from the cat owners' socio-economic status, mainly education and income, as well as gender and age. A consistency in those cat owner behaviours that contribute to cat overpopulation was also uncovered, revealing a sub-population of individuals who persist in the undesirable behaviours. Finally, a strong relationship between attitude and consequent behaviour was demonstrated, indicating the importance of education and targeted publicity as a means to influence attitudes and thereby change behaviours in this respect. We propose several measures by which to reduce the current extent of cat owners' contribution to the cat overpopulation: discouraging unwanted owner behaviours such as abandonment of their cats and allowing them to breed; promoting awareness of the neutering option among cat caretakers; and increasing pre-adoption neutering rates in shelters. Regional and national laws promoting responsible pet ownership need to be enacted. By improving the current level of knowledge and awareness among cat

  8. Frequency of antibodies against Sarcocystis neurona and Neospora caninum in domestic cats in the state of Bahia, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Meneses, Iris Daniela Santos de; Andrade, Müller Ribeiro; Uzêda, Rosângela Soares; Bittencourt, Marta Vasconcelos; Lindsay, David Scott; Gondim, Luís Fernando Pita

    2014-01-01

    Sarcocystis neurona is the major agent of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis. It infects several mammalian species in the Americas, where the definitive hosts, marsupials of the genus Didelphis (D. virginiana and D. albiventris) are found. Domestic cats are one of the confirmed intermediate hosts of the parasite; however, antibodies against S. neurona had never before been demonstrated in Brazilian cats. The aim of this study was to determine whether cats in Bahia, Brazil, are exposed to the parasite. A total of 272 feline serum samples (134 from feral and 138 from house cats) were subjected to an indirect fluorescent antibody test using cultured merozoites of S. neurona as antigen. Positivity was detected in 4.0% (11/272) of the tested samples, with titers ranging from 25 to 800. The feline sera were also tested for antibodies against the protozoan Neospora caninum, with an observed antibody frequency of 2.9%. To the author's knowledge, this is the first study to report antibodies against S. neurona in Brazilian cats. We conclude that cats are exposed to the parasite in the region of this study. Further investigations are needed to confirm the role of cats in the transmission cycle of S. neurona in Brazil. PMID:25517534

  9. That Fat Cat

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lambert, Phyllis Gilchrist

    2012-01-01

    This activity began with a picture book, Nurit Karlin's "Fat Cat On a Mat" (HarperCollins; 1998). The author and her students started their project with a 5-inch circular template for the head of their cats. They reviewed shapes as they drew the head and then added the ears and nose, which were triangles. Details to the face were added when…

  10. Diseases Transmitted by Cats.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, Ellie J C; Abrahamian, Fredrick M

    2015-10-01

    Humans and cats have shared a close relationship since ancient times. Millions of cats are kept as household pets, and 34% of households have cats. There are numerous diseases that may be transmitted from cats to humans. General modes of transmission, with some overlapping features, can occur through inhalation (e.g., bordetellosis); vector-borne spread (e.g., ehrlichiosis); fecal-oral route (e.g., campylobacteriosis); bite, scratch, or puncture (e.g., rabies); soil-borne spread (e.g., histoplasmosis); and direct contact (e.g., scabies). It is also likely that the domestic cat can potentially act as a reservoir for many other zoonoses that are not yet recognized. The microbiology of cat bite wound infections in humans is often polymicrobial with a broad mixture of aerobic (e.g., Pasteurella, Streptococcus, Staphylococcus) and anaerobic (e.g., Fusobacterium, Porphyromonas, Bacteroides) microorganisms. Bacteria recovered from infected cat bite wounds are most often reflective of the oral flora of the cat, which can also be influenced by the microbiome of their ingested prey and other foods. Bacteria may also originate from the victim's own skin or the physical environment at the time of injury. PMID:26542039

  11. [Bacteriological and virological status in upper respiratory tract infections of cats (cat common cold complex)].

    PubMed

    Adler, Kerstin; Radeloff, Isabel; Stephan, Bernd; Greife, Heinrich; Hellmann, Klaus

    2007-01-01

    Between October 2002 and January 2005,460 bacteriological samples from cats with an acute upper respiratory tract infection were analysed in clinical field studies in two accredited laboratories in Germany. Oropharyngeal swabs were taken from these cats and sent to the laboratories for routine diagnostics. In the swab samples of 460 cats 382 bacteria strains were isolated. The following bacteria were isolated most frequently: Pasteurella spp. (32.5 %), Staphylococcus spp. (18.5 %), Escherichia coli (17.0 %), Streptococcus spp. (9.1 %), Pseudomonas spp. (6.9 %) and Klebsiella spp. (3.0 %). Bordetella bronchiseptica was found in 0.4 % of the animals To evaluate possible regional and time influences, the animals were split into three populations: 1: Germany, laboratory A; 2: Germany, laboratory B; 3: France and Belgium, laboratory B. In population 1 an 2 Pasteurella spp. were found most frequently with 42.2 % and 36.5 %, respectively. The second most frequently isolated bacterial species were Staphylococcus spp. with 14.1 % and 21.4 % and E. coli with 13.6 % and 17.5 % respectively. In population 3 Staphylococcus spp., E. coli (20 % each) and Pasteurella spp. (18.5 %) were isolated at almost the same frequency. Virological parameter were additionally analysed in 328 cats (population 2 and 3). Serum samples were analysed for antibodies specific for Feline Calicivirus (FCV) and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) and for Feline Leukaemia Virus (FeLV) antigen. Oropharyngeal swabs were analysed for Feline Herpesvirus (FHV) by using PCR. Calicivirus-specific antibodies were found in 99.6 % of the cats of population 2 and in 100 % of the animals in population 3. Herpesvirus was detected in 15.3 % and 23.3 % of the cats, respectively. FeLV-Antigen was found in 0.4 % of the animals in population 2 and in 10.1 % of the cats in population 3, while FIV-antibodies were identified in 8.7 % of the animals of population 2 and in 6.1 % of the cats of population 3. In total FHV was

  12. Molecular and biological characterization of first isolates of Hammondia hammondi from cats from Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Dubey, J P; Tilahun, G; Boyle, J P; Schares, G; Verma, S K; Ferreira, L R; Oliveira, S; Tiao, N; Darrington, C; Gebreyes, W A

    2013-08-01

    Toxoplasma gondii oocysts are morphologically and antigenically similar to oocysts of another feline coccidian, Hammondia hammondi. The distinction between H. hammondi and T. gondii is important from an epidemiological perspective because all isolates of T. gondii are potentially pathogenic for humans and animals, whereas H. hammondi is not known to cause clinical disease in any naturally infected intermediate or definitive hosts. In the present report, H. hammondi (designated HhCatEt1 and HhCatEt2) oocysts were found microscopically in the feces of 2 of 36 feral domestic cats (Felis catus) from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Oocysts were orally infective to Swiss Webster and gamma interferon gene knockout mice; the inoculated mice developed tissue cysts in their muscles. Laboratory-raised cats fed mouse tissues of infected mice shed H. hammondi oocysts with a prepatent period of 5 days. The DNA extracted from sporulated oocysts reacted with H. hammondi-specific primers, and sequences were deposited in GenBank (accession nos. JX477424, and KC223619). This is the first report of isolation of H. hammondi from cats from the African continent. PMID:23517380

  13. Behavior of feral horses in response to culling and GnRH immunocontraception

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, Jason I.; Powers, Jenny G.; Garbe, Heidi M.; Oehler, Michael W.; Nett, Terry M.; Baker, Dan L.

    2014-01-01

    Wildlife management actions can alter fundamental behaviors of individuals and groups,which may directly impact their life history parameters in unforeseen ways. This is especially true for highly social animals because changes in one individual’s behavior can cascade throughout its social network. When resources to support populations of social animals are limited and populations become locally overabundant, managers are faced with the daunting challenge of decreasing population size without disrupting core behavioral processes. Increasingly, managers are turning to fertility control technologies to supplement culling in efforts to suppress population growth, but little is quantitatively known about how either of these management tools affects behavior. Gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) is a small neuropeptide that performs an obligatory role in mammalian reproduction and has been formulated into the immunocontraceptive GonaCon-BTM. We investigated the influences of this vaccine on behavior of feral horses (Equus caballus) at Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota, USA, for a year preceding and a year following nonlethal culling and GnRH-vaccine treatment. We observed horses during the breeding season and found only minimal differences in time budget behaviors of free-ranging female feral horses treated with GnRH and those treated with saline. The differences observed were consistent with the metabolic demands of pregnancy and lactation. We observed similar social behaviors between treatment groups, reflecting limited reproductive behavior among control females due to high rates of pregnancy and suppressed reproductive behavior among treated females due to GnRH-inhibited ovarian activity. In the treatment year, band stallion age was the only supported factor influencing herding behavior (P < 0.001), harem-tending behavior (P < 0.001), and agonistic behavior (P = 0.02). There was no difference between the mean body condition of control females (4

  14. Determinants of Cat Choice and Outcomes for Adult Cats and Kittens Adopted from an Australian Animal Shelter

    PubMed Central

    Zito, Sarah; Paterson, Mandy; Vankan, Dianne; Morton, John; Bennett, Pauleen; Phillips, Clive

    2015-01-01

    Simple Summary Commonly, more adult cats than kittens are euthanized in animal shelters. We surveyed 382 cat adopters to assess adoption outcomes and potential determinants of adopters’ choice of cat age group and price. Most adopters had benevolent motivations for adopting from the shelter and had put considerable thought into the adoption and responsible ownership requirements. However, adult cat adopters were more likely to have been influenced by price than kitten adopters. Adoption outcomes were generally positive in all age and adoption price groups. This study provides evidence to inform the design of strategies to encourage adult cat adoptions. Abstract The percentage of adult cats euthanized in animal shelters is greater than that of kittens because adult cats are less likely to be adopted. This study aimed to provide evidence to inform the design of strategies to encourage adult cat adoptions. One such strategy is to discount adoption prices, but there are concerns that this may result in poor adoption outcomes. We surveyed 382 cat adopters at the time of adoption, to assess potential determinants of adopters’ cat age group choice (adult or kitten) and, for adult cat adopters, the price they are willing to pay. The same respondents were surveyed again 6–12 months after the adoption to compare outcomes between cat age groups and between adult cats in two price categories. Most adopters had benevolent motivations for adopting from the shelter and had put considerable thought into the adoption and requirements for responsible ownership. However, adult cat adopters were more likely to have been influenced by price than kitten adopters. Adoption outcomes were generally positive for both adult cats and kittens and for adult cats adopted at low prices. The latter finding alleviates concerns about the outcomes of “low-cost” adoptions in populations, such as the study population, and lends support for the use of “low-cost” adoptions as an option for

  15. Chemical physiological and morphological studies of feral baltic salmon (Salmo salar) suffering from abnormal fry mortality

    SciTech Connect

    Norrgren, L. . Dept. of Pathology Swedish Environmental Research Inst., Stockholm ); Andersson, T. . Dept. of Zoophysiology); Bergqvist, P.A. . Inst. of Environmental Chemistry); Bjoerklund, I. )

    1993-11-01

    In 1974, abnormally high mortality was recorded among yolk-sac fry of Baltic salmon (Salmo salar) originating from feral females manually stripped and fertilized with milt from feral males. The cause of this mortality, designated M74, is unknown. The hypothesis is that xenobiotic compounds responsible for reproduction failure in higher vertebrates in the Baltic Sea also interfere with reproduction in Baltic salmon. The significance of M74 should not be underestimated, because the syndrome has caused up to 75% yearly mortality of developing Baltic salmon yolk-sac larvae in a fish hatchery dedicated to production of smolt during the last two decades. The author cannot exclude the possibility that only a relatively low number of naturally spawned eggs develop normally because of M74. No individual pollutant has been shown to be responsible for the development of M74 syndrome. However, a higher total body burden of organochlorine substances may be responsible for the M74 syndrome. The presence of induced hepatic cytochrome P450 enzymes in both yolk-sac fry suffering from M74 and adult feral females producing offspring affected by M74 supports this hypothesis. In addition, the P450 enzyme activity in offspring from feral fish is higher than the activity in yolk-sac fry from hatchery-raised fish, suggesting that feral Baltic salmon are influenced by organic xenobiotics.

  16. Escherichia coli O157:H7 in Feral Swine Near Spinach Fields and Cattle, Central California Coast

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We investigated involvement of feral swine in contamination of agriculture fields and surface waterways with Escherichia coli O157:H7 after a nationwide outbreak traced to bagged spinach from California. Isolates from feral swine, cattle, surface water, sediment, and soil at 1 ranch were matched to ...

  17. Seroprevalence of Neospora caninum in feral swine (Sus scrofa) in the United States.

    PubMed

    Cerqueira-Cézar, Camila K; Pedersen, Kerri; Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Kwok, Oliver C; Villena, Isabelle; Dubey, Jitender P

    2016-08-15

    The protozoon Neospora caninum is a major cause of abortion in cattle worldwide. Canids (Canis familiaris, Canis latrans, Canis lupus) are definitive hosts whereas many other animal species, including pigs, are intermediate hosts for the parasite. Between 2012 and 2014, serum samples from 1059 feral swine (Sus scrofa) from 29 states of the USA were tested for N. caninum antibodies, using the N. caninum agglutination test (NAT). Of these, 159 (15.0%) feral pigs from 21 states tested positive, with a range of titers of 1:25 (cut-off) (n=153), 1:200 (1), 1:400 (1), 1:800 (3) and 1:3200 (1). Results indicate widespread exposure of feral swine to N. caninum infection across the USA. PMID:27514880

  18. Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) in wild Pallas' cats.

    PubMed

    Brown, Meredith A; Munkhtsog, Bariushaa; Troyer, Jennifer L; Ross, Steve; Sellers, Rani; Fine, Amanda E; Swanson, William F; Roelke, Melody E; O'Brien, Stephen J

    2010-03-15

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), a feline lentivirus related to HIV, causes immune dysfunction in domestic and wild cats. The Pallas' cat is the only species from Asia known to harbor a species-specific strain of FIV designated FIV(Oma) in natural populations. Here, a 25% seroprevalence of FIV is reported from 28 wild Mongolian Pallas' cats sampled from 2000 to 2008. Phylogenetic analysis of proviral RT-Pol from eight FIV(Oma) isolates from Mongolia, Russia, China and Kazakhstan reveals a unique monophyletic lineage of the virus within the Pallas' cat population, most closely related to the African cheetah and leopard FIV strains. Histopathological examination of lymph node and spleen from infected and uninfected Pallas' cats suggests that FIV(Oma) causes immune depletion in its' native host. PMID:19926144

  19. Feral ferrets (Mustela furo) as hosts and sentinels of tuberculosis in New Zealand

    PubMed Central

    Byrom, AE; Caley, P; Paterson, BM; Nugent, G

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The control and eventual eradication of bovine tuberculosis (TB) poses major challenges in New Zealand, given the variety of wildlife species susceptible to TB, many of which are capable of onwards transmission of Mycobacterium bovis infection. Here we discuss the role of feral ferrets (Mustela furo), focussing on potential transmission or risk pathways that have implications for management of TB. Firstly inter-specific transmission to ferrets. Ferrets scavenge potentially infected wildlife, including other ferrets, thus prevalence of TB can be amplified through ferrets feeding on tuberculous carcasses, particularly brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula). Secondly intra-specific transmission between ferrets. The rate of ferret-ferret transmission depends on population density, and in some places ferret densities exceed the estimated threshold for disease persistence. TB can therefore potentially be maintained independently of other sources of infection. Thirdly transmission from ferrets to other wildlife. These include the main wildlife maintenance host, brushtail possums, that will occasionally scavenge potentially tuberculous ferret carcasses. Fourthly transmission from ferrets to livestock. This is considered to occur occasionally, but the actual rate of transmission has never been measured. Fifthly geographical spread. M. bovis-infected ferrets can travel large distances and cause new outbreaks of TB at locations previously free of TB, which may have caused an expansion of TB-endemic areas.Ferrets play a complex role in the TB cycle in New Zealand; they are capable of contracting, amplifying and transmitting M. bovis infection, sometimes resulting in ferret populations with a high prevalence of TB. However, ferret population densities are usually too low to sustain infection independently, and transmission to other wildlife or livestock appears a rarer event than with possums. Nevertheless, management of ferrets remains a key part of the National

  20. Cross-Sectional Study of Characteristics of Owners and Nonowners Surrendering Cats to Four Australian Animal Shelters.

    PubMed

    Zito, Sarah; Morton, John; Paterson, Mandy; Vankan, Dianne; Bennett, Pauleen C; Rand, Jacquie; Phillips, Clive J C

    2016-01-01

    Unwanted cats surrendered to nonhuman animal shelters are generally categorized as either "owned" or "stray." This classification is misleading because "stray" cats may include many "semiowned" cats, for which people provide care but who are not perceived as being owned. This differentiation is important because effective strategies designed to reduce cat admissions to, and euthanasia rates in, shelters rely on accurate information about cat populations contributing to shelter intake; cat semiowners will likely respond to different strategies than people with no relationship with the cats they surrender. People surrendering cats to four Australian animal shelters were surveyed to identify factors associated with perception of ownership. Many self-classified nonowners had fed the cats they surrendered, often for a considerable period of time. The factor most strongly associated with ownership perception was an increasing association time with the cat. These findings confirm that enduring relationships between surrenderers and cats, consistent with cat semiownership, are common for cats surrendered to Australian animal shelters. This finding should be taken into account when planning education messages and cat population management strategies aimed at reducing cat admissions. PMID:26742887

  1. Visitation to cottonseed storage sites by feral swine and evidence of gossypol exposure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This report describes observations surrounding a range habitat study of a group of radio-collared and ear-tagged feral pigs in south Texas. A mortality signal from the collar of one animal and reported signs of lethargy in a second animal led to an investigation into the causes of the distress. Lo...

  2. Of Feral Faculty and Magisterial Mowglis: The Domestication of Junior Faculty

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reddick, Richard J.

    2015-01-01

    This chapter presents an assistant professor's scholarly personal narrative at the precipice of promotion, and reveals how the feral child metaphor might aptly describe many junior professors' experiences as they navigate a path toward tenure. This chronicling of mentorship in sometimes unexpected venues may aid new faculty and those invested in…

  3. Ecological effects of feral biofuel crops in constructed oak savannah communities - June 2012

    EPA Science Inventory

    The effects of elevated temperatures and drought on constructed oak savannahs were studied to determine the interactive effects of potentially invasive feral biofuel species and climate change on native grassland communities. A total of 12 sunlit mesocosm were used. Each mesoco...

  4. Diagnostic Characterization of a Feral Swine Herd Enzootically Infected with Brucella

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Eighty feral swine were trapped from a herd which had been documented to be seropositive for Brucella and which had been used for Brucella abortus RB51 vaccine trials on a 7,100 hectare tract of land in South Carolina. The animals were euthanized and complete necropsies were performed. Samples we...

  5. Abundance and distribution of feral pigs at Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge, 2010-2013

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, Steven C.; Leopold, Christina R.; Kendall, Steven J.

    2013-01-01

    The Hakalau Forest Unit of the Big Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex has intensively managed feral pigs (Sus scrofa) and monitored feral pig presence with surveys of all managed areas since 1988. Results of all available data regarding pig management activities through 2004 were compiled and analyzed, but no further analyses had been conducted since then. The objective of this report was to analyze recent feral ungulate surveys at the Hakalau Forest Unit to determine current pig abundance and distribution. Activity indices for feral pigs, consisting of the presence of fresh or intermediate sign at 422 stations, each with approximately 20 sample plots, were compiled for years 2010–2013. A calibrated model based on the number of pigs removed from one management unit and concurrent activity surveys was applied to estimate pig abundance in other management units. Although point estimates appeared to decrease from 489.1 (±105.6) in 2010 to 407.6 (±88.0) in 2013, 95% confidence intervals overlapped, indicating no significant change in pig abundance within all management units. Nonetheless, there were significant declines in pig abundance over the four-year period within management units 1, 6, and 7. Areas where pig abundance remained high include the southern portion of Unit 2. Results of these surveys will be useful for directing management actions towards specific management units.

  6. Absence of bovine tuberculosis in feral swine (Sus scrofa) from the Southern Texas border region

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Free-ranging wildlife, like feral swine (Sus scrofa), harbor a variety of diseases that are infectious to livestock and could negatively impact agricultural production. Information is lacking regarding the exposure and infection rates for bovine tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis; bTB), and many othe...

  7. Exposure of feral swine (Sus scrofa) in the United States to selected pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Baroch, John A.; Gagnon, Carl A.; Lacouture, Sonia; Gottschalk, Marcelo

    2015-01-01

    Feral swine (Sus scrofa) are widely distributed in the United States. In 2011 and 2012, serum samples and tonsils were recovered from 162 and 37 feral swine, respectively, in the US to evaluate exposure to important swine endemic pathogens. Antibodies against porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) and porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) were found in 2.5% and 25.3% of tested sera, respectively. Positive serological reactions against Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae have been detected in 19.7% and 69.7% of animals. More than 15% of animals presented antibodies against these 2 pathogens simultaneously. Most animals were also seropositive for Lawsonia intracellularis. Feral swine can also be involved in transmission of zoonotic agents. Almost 50% of animals possessed antibodies against Salmonella. In addition, 94.4% of animals were carriers of Streptococcus suis in their tonsils. In conclusion, feral swine may be considered as a potential reservoir for different endemic diseases in domestic pigs, as well as for important zoonotic agents. PMID:25673913

  8. Exposure of feral swine (Sus scrofa) in the United States to selected pathogens.

    PubMed

    Baroch, John A; Gagnon, Carl A; Lacouture, Sonia; Gottschalk, Marcelo

    2015-01-01

    Feral swine (Sus scrofa) are widely distributed in the United States. In 2011 and 2012, serum samples and tonsils were recovered from 162 and 37 feral swine, respectively, in the US to evaluate exposure to important swine endemic pathogens. Antibodies against porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) and porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) were found in 2.5% and 25.3% of tested sera, respectively. Positive serological reactions against Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae have been detected in 19.7% and 69.7% of animals. More than 15% of animals presented antibodies against these 2 pathogens simultaneously. Most animals were also seropositive for Lawsonia intracellularis. Feral swine can also be involved in transmission of zoonotic agents. Almost 50% of animals possessed antibodies against Salmonella. In addition, 94.4% of animals were carriers of Streptococcus suis in their tonsils. In conclusion, feral swine may be considered as a potential reservoir for different endemic diseases in domestic pigs, as well as for important zoonotic agents. PMID:25673913

  9. Toxoplasma gondii in feral american minks at the Maullin river, Chile

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    American mink (Neovison vison) is a widely distributed invasive species in southern Chile. Thirty four feral minks were trapped at two distinct sites (rural and peri-urban), diet analyzed, and Toxoplasma gondii exposure compared using PCR and specific antibodies. Serum samples were evaluated using a...

  10. Feral rye (Secale cereal) control in winter canola in the Pacific Northwest

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the Pacific Northwest (PNW) feral rye is a predominant winter annual grass weed in the low-rainfall region where a winter wheat-tillage fallow rotation has been practiced for more than 130 yrs and winter canola has been introduced recently. A 3-yr study was conducted in Washington to determine th...

  11. No evidence of interference competition among the invasive feral pig and two native peccary species in a Neotropical wetland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oliveira-Santos, Luiz G. R.; Dorazio, Robert M.; Tomas, Walfrido M.; Mourao, Guilherme; Fernandez, Fernando A.S.

    2011-01-01

    In South America, the invasive feral pig (Sus scrofa Linnaeus) has become established in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and in a wide range within Brazil, along the southern half of the Atlantic Forest, in the cerrado (savanna) and in the Pantanal wetland. The geographical ranges of the two most common South American native peccary (Tayassu pecari Link and Pecari tajacu Linnaeus) overlap almost entirely, and the feral pig now co-occurs with them in several areas. Because feral pig, white-lipped and collared peccary are considered ecological equivalents, there has been much speculation about possible competitive interactions among them (Desbiez et al. 2009, Sicuro & Oliveira 2002).

  12. Prevalence of antibodies to Sarcocystis neurona in cats from Virginia and Pennsylvania.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Vasha; Grant, David C; Dubey, J P; Zajac, Anne M; Lindsay, David S

    2010-08-01

    Sarcocystis neurona is best known as the causative agent of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis of horses in the Americas. Domestic cats ( Felis domesticus ) were the first animals described as an intermediate host for S. neurona . However, S. neurona -associated encephalitis has also been reported in naturally infected cats in the United States. Thus, cats can be implicated in the life cycle of S. neurona as natural intermediate hosts. The present study examined the seroprevalence of IgG antibodies to merozoites of S. neurona in populations of domestic cats from Virginia and Pennsylvania. Overall, sera or plasma from 441 cats (Virginia = 232, Pennsylvania = 209) were tested by an indirect immunofluorescent assay at a 1ratio50 dilution. Antibodies to S. neurona were found in 32 (7%) of 441 cats. Of these, 22 (9%) of the 232 cats from Virginia and 10 (5%) of the 209 cats from Pennsylvania were seropositive for S. neurona . PMID:20476809

  13. Evaluation of cats as the source of endemic sporotrichosis in Peru.

    PubMed

    Kovarik, Carrie L; Neyra, Edgar; Bustamante, Beatriz

    2008-02-01

    Although contact with domestic cats has been shown to be a risk factor for sporotrichosis in endemic areas, systematic evaluation of apparently unaffected cats as possible reservoirs for infection has not been explored. The goals of this study were to identify the following aspects of sporotrichosis in the endemic area of Abancay, Peru: (i) the overall prevalence of sporotrichosis in the cat population, (ii) the most common site where the fungus can be isolated from these cats, and (iii) whether cats without identifiable skin lesions may be carriers of the fungus in the oral mucosa, nasal mucosa, or nails. One household cat in each of 85 neighborhoods within the endemic area of Abancay, Peru was randomly selected. Oral and nasal swabs, as well as nail clippings were taken from 84 of the cats. In addition, samples from skin lesions that were suspected to be due to sporotrichosis were collected from cats or members of families that owned the pets. Cultures inoculated with two nasal swabs and one set of nail clippings from two different cats yielded Sporothrix schenckii, the identity of which were confirmed by rDNA sequencing. The overall prevalence of Sporothrix schenckii colonization was 2.38% (95% CI 0.41-9.14) in this cat population. None of the skin lesion samples from the cats and only one such sample from a family member were positive for Sporothrix schenckii in culture. These results suggest a role for domestic cats as a possible reservoir for sporotrichosis infection in Abancay. PMID:17885948

  14. FERAL: network-based classifier with application to breast cancer outcome prediction

    PubMed Central

    Allahyar, Amin; de Ridder, Jeroen

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: Breast cancer outcome prediction based on gene expression profiles is an important strategy for personalize patient care. To improve performance and consistency of discovered markers of the initial molecular classifiers, network-based outcome prediction methods (NOPs) have been proposed. In spite of the initial claims, recent studies revealed that neither performance nor consistency can be improved using these methods. NOPs typically rely on the construction of meta-genes by averaging the expression of several genes connected in a network that encodes protein interactions or pathway information. In this article, we expose several fundamental issues in NOPs that impede on the prediction power, consistency of discovered markers and obscures biological interpretation. Results: To overcome these issues, we propose FERAL, a network-based classifier that hinges upon the Sparse Group Lasso which performs simultaneous selection of marker genes and training of the prediction model. An important feature of FERAL, and a significant departure from existing NOPs, is that it uses multiple operators to summarize genes into meta-genes. This gives the classifier the opportunity to select the most relevant meta-gene for each gene set. Extensive evaluation revealed that the discovered markers are markedly more stable across independent datasets. Moreover, interpretation of the marker genes detected by FERAL reveals valuable mechanistic insight into the etiology of breast cancer. Availability and implementation: All code is available for download at: http://homepage.tudelft.nl/53a60/resources/FERAL/FERAL.zip. Contact: j.deridder@tudelft.nl Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:26072498

  15. Numbers and Characteristics of Cats Admitted to Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) Shelters in Australia and Reasons for Surrender

    PubMed Central

    Alberthsen, Corinne; Rand, Jacquie; Morton, John; Bennett, Pauleen; Paterson, Mandy; Vankan, Dianne

    2016-01-01

    Simple Summary National Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) shelter admission data were utilized to examine cats presented to Australian animal shelters and reasons for surrender. This study reports the most commonly cited reasons for an owner to surrender and found lower than expected sterilized cats. Abstract Despite high numbers of cats admitted to animal shelters annually, there is surprisingly little information available about the characteristics of these cats. In this study, we examined 195,387 admissions to 33 Australian RSPCA shelters and six friends of the RSPCA groups from July 2006 to June 2010. The aims of this study were to describe the numbers and characteristics of cats entering Australian RSPCA shelters, and to describe reasons for cat surrender. Data collected included shelter, state, admission source, age, gender, date of arrival, color, breed, reproductive status (sterilized or not prior to admission), feral status and surrender reason (if applicable). Most admissions were presented by members of the general public, as either stray animals or owner-surrenders, and more kittens were admitted than adults. Owner-related reasons were most commonly given for surrendering a cat to a shelter. The most frequently cited owner-related reason was accommodation (i.e., cats were not allowed). Importantly, although the percentage of admissions where the cat was previously sterilized (36%) was the highest of any shelter study reported to date, this was still lower than expected, particularly among owner-surrendered cats (47%). The percentage of admissions where the cat was previously sterilized was low even in jurisdictions that require mandatory sterilization. PMID:26999223

  16. Multiple invasions of an infectious retrovirus in cat genomes

    PubMed Central

    Shimode, Sayumi; Nakagawa, So; Miyazawa, Takayuki

    2015-01-01

    Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) are remnants of ancient retroviral infections of host germ-line cells. While most ERVs are defective, some are active and express viral proteins. The RD-114 virus is a replication-competent feline ERV, and several feline cell lines produce infectious RD-114 viral particles. All domestic cats are considered to have an ERV locus encoding a replication-competent RD-114 virus in their genomes; however, the locus has not been identified. In this study, we investigated RD-114 virus-related proviral loci in genomes of domestic cats, and found that none were capable of producing infectious viruses. We also found that all domestic cats have an RD-114 virus-related sequence on chromosome C2, termed RDRS C2a, but populations of the other RDRSs are different depending on the regions where cats live or breed. Our results indicate that RDRS C2a, the oldest RD-114-related provirus, entered the host genome before an ancestor of domestic cats started diverging and the other new RDRSs might have integrated into migrating cats in Europe. We also show that infectious RD-114 virus can be resurrected by the recombination between two non-infectious RDRSs. From these data, we conclude that cats do not harbor infectious RD-114 viral loci in their genomes and RD-114-related viruses invaded cat genomes multiple times. PMID:25641657

  17. Multiple invasions of an infectious retrovirus in cat genomes.

    PubMed

    Shimode, Sayumi; Nakagawa, So; Miyazawa, Takayuki

    2015-01-01

    Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) are remnants of ancient retroviral infections of host germ-line cells. While most ERVs are defective, some are active and express viral proteins. The RD-114 virus is a replication-competent feline ERV, and several feline cell lines produce infectious RD-114 viral particles. All domestic cats are considered to have an ERV locus encoding a replication-competent RD-114 virus in their genomes; however, the locus has not been identified. In this study, we investigated RD-114 virus-related proviral loci in genomes of domestic cats, and found that none were capable of producing infectious viruses. We also found that all domestic cats have an RD-114 virus-related sequence on chromosome C2, termed RDRS C2a, but populations of the other RDRSs are different depending on the regions where cats live or breed. Our results indicate that RDRS C2a, the oldest RD-114-related provirus, entered the host genome before an ancestor of domestic cats started diverging and the other new RDRSs might have integrated into migrating cats in Europe. We also show that infectious RD-114 virus can be resurrected by the recombination between two non-infectious RDRSs. From these data, we conclude that cats do not harbor infectious RD-114 viral loci in their genomes and RD-114-related viruses invaded cat genomes multiple times. PMID:25641657

  18. Membranous nephropathy in sibling cats.

    PubMed

    Nash, A S; Wright, N G

    1983-08-20

    Membranous nephropathy was diagnosed in two sibling cats from the same household. Both cases presented with the nephrotic syndrome but 33 months elapsed before the second cat became ill, by which time the first cat had been in full clinical remission for over a year. PMID:6623883

  19. Cat Scratch Disease (For Parents)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Story" 5 Things to Know About Zika & Pregnancy Cat Scratch Disease KidsHealth > For Parents > Cat Scratch Disease Print A A A Text Size ... Doctor en español Enfermedad por arañazo de gato Cat scratch disease is a bacterial infection that a ...

  20. CAT altitude avoidance system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gary, B. L. (Inventor)

    1982-01-01

    A method and apparatus are provided for indicating the altitude of the tropopause or of an inversion layer wherein clear air turbulence (CAT) may occur, and the likely severity of any such CAT, includes directing a passive microwave radiometer on the aircraft at different angles with respect to the horizon. The microwave radiation measured at a frequency of about 55 GHz represents the temperature of the air at an ""average'' range of about 3 kilometers, so that the sine of the angle of the radiometer times 3 kilometers equals the approximate altitude of the air whose temperature is measured. A plot of altitude (with respect to the aircraft) versus temperature of the air at that altitude, can indicate when an inversion layer is present and can indicate the altitude of the tropopause or of such an inversion layer. The plot can also indicate the severity of any CAT in an inversion layer. If CAT has been detected in the general area, then the aircraft can be flown at an altitude to avoid the tropopause or inversion layer.

  1. Vibrational Schroedinger Cats

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kis, Z.; Janszky, J.; Vinogradov, An. V.; Kobayashi, T.

    1996-01-01

    The optical Schroedinger cat states are simple realizations of quantum states having nonclassical features. It is shown that vibrational analogues of such states can be realized in an experiment of double pulse excitation of vibrionic transitions. To track the evolution of the vibrational wave packet we derive a non-unitary time evolution operator so that calculations are made in a quasi Heisenberg picture.

  2. Serological response of cats to experimental Besnoitia darlingi and Besnoitia neotomofelis infections and prevalence of antibodies to these parasites in cats from Virginia and Pennsylvania.

    PubMed

    Houk, Alice E; Rosypal, Alexa C; Grant, David C; Dubey, J P; Zajac, Anne M; Yabsley, Michael J; Lindsay, David S

    2011-04-01

    Besnoitia darlingi and Besnoitia neotomofelis are cyst-forming tissue apicomplexan parasites that use domestic cats (Felis domesticus) as definitive hosts and opossums (Didelphis virginiana ) and Southern Plains woodrats (Neotoma micropus) as intermediate hosts, respectively. Nothing is known about the prevalence of B. darlingi or B. neotomofelis in cats from the United States. Besnoitia darlingi infections have been reported in naturally infected opossums from many states in the United States, and B. neotomofelis infections have been reported from Southern Plains woodrats from Texas, but naturally infected cats have not been identified. The present study examined the IgG antibody response of cats to experimental infection (B. darlingi n  =  1 cat; B. neotomofelis n  =  3 cats). Samples from these cats were used to develop an indirect immunofluorescent antibody test (IFAT), which was then used to examine seroprevalence of IgG antibodies to tachyzoites of B. darlingi and B. neotomofelis in a population of domestic cats from Virginia (N  =  232 cats) and Pennsylvania (N  =  209). The serum from cats inoculated with B. darlingi or B. neotomofelis cross-reacted with each other's tachyzoites. The titers to heterologous tachyzoites were 1 to 3 dilutions lower than to homologous tachyzoites. Sera from B. darlingi- or B. neotomofelis-infected cats did not react with tachyzoites of Toxoplasma gondii or Neospora caninum or merozoites of Sarcocystis neurona using the IFAT. Antibodies to B. darlingi were found in 14% and 2% of cats from Virginia and Pennsylvania, respectively. Antibodies to B. neotomofelis were found in 5% and 4% of cats from Virginia and Pennsylvania, respectively. Nine cats from Virginia and 1 cat from Pennsylvania were positive for both. PMID:21506782

  3. Population.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Pat; Landahl, John

    This pamphlet has been prepared in response to a new problem, a rapidly increasing population, and a new need, population education. It is designed to help teachers provide their students with some basic population concepts with stress placed on the elements of decision making. In the first section of the pamphlet, some of the basic concepts of…

  4. Nuisances and welfare of free-roaming cats in urban settings and their association with cat reproduction.

    PubMed

    Gunther, I; Raz, T; Berke, O; Klement, E

    2015-05-01

    Free roaming cats (FRC) are highly abundant in cities around the world. Increasing populations of these cats might result in impairment of cat welfare and cause nuisances and public health risks. In order to study the seasonal dynamics of FRC populations and its association with events of cat welfare impairment and nuisances, we analyzed a database of FRC-associated citizens' telephone complaint events, which were registered in five cities in Israel (total human population of 1.42 million residents) during the years 2007-2011. These complaint events were classified to the following six categories: cat's carcasses, kittens, parturition, aggressive behavior toward people, invasion to human facilities, and cat injuries and distress. Overall, 87,764 complaint events associated with these categories were registered in the five cities during the study period (123.2 complaint events per 10,000 citizens per year). Length of daylight was moderately correlated with the rate of complaints on kittens in the same month (r=0.64) and parturition in the previous month (r=0.54) (P<0.001). Both kitten and parturition-related complaints showed a prominent seasonal pattern, peaking in April and May, respectively, and declining gradually until November. 'Kittens' or 'parturition' were explicitly mentioned in 38%, 39% and 19%, respectively, of the complaints regarding cat aggressiveness toward people, cat invasion to human facilities and cat injuries and distress. In most of the cities the rate of citizen complaints regarding carcasses, aggression, invasion and injuries were still significantly correlated with rate of complaints regarding kittens after omission of these joint complaints and remained significant after controlling for seasonality. These findings imply an association of cat welfare impairment and nuisances with FRC reproduction intensity. The current study revealed the high rate of nuisances and potential public health hazards related to FRC, as well as the impairment of

  5. The albinism of the feral Asinara white donkeys (Equus asinus) is determined by a missense mutation in a highly conserved position of the tyrosinase (TYR) gene deduced protein.

    PubMed

    Utzeri, V J; Bertolini, F; Ribani, A; Schiavo, G; Dall'Olio, S; Fontanesi, L

    2016-02-01

    A feral donkey population (Equus asinus), living in the Asinara National Park (an island north-west of Sardinia, Italy), includes a unique white albino donkey subpopulation or colour morph that is a major attraction of this park. Disrupting mutations in the tyrosinase (TYR) gene are known to cause recessive albinisms in humans (oculocutaneous albinism Type 1; OCA1) and other species. In this study, we analysed the donkey TYR gene as a strong candidate to identify the causative mutation of the albinism of these donkeys. The TYR gene was sequenced from 13 donkeys (seven Asinara white albino and six coloured animals). Seven single nucleotide polymorphisms were identified. A missense mutation (c.604C>G; p.His202Asp) in a highly conserved amino acid position (even across kingdoms), which disrupts the first copper-binding site (CuA) of functional protein, was identified in the homozygous condition (G/G or D/D) in all Asinara white albino donkeys and in the albino son of a trio (the grey parents had genotype C/G or H/D), supporting the recessive mode of inheritance of this mutation. Genotyping 82 donkeys confirmed that Asinara albino donkeys had genotype G/G whereas all other coloured donkeys had genotype C/C or C/G. Across-population association between the c.604C>G genotypes and the albino coat colour was highly significant (P = 6.17E-18). The identification of the causative mutation of the albinism in the Asinara white donkeys might open new perspectives to study the dynamics of this putative deleterious allele in a feral population and to manage this interesting animal genetic resource. PMID:26763160

  6. Cats as an aid to teaching genetics.

    PubMed Central

    Christensen, A C

    2000-01-01

    I have used an exercise involving domestic cats in the General Genetics course at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln for the past 5 years. Using a coherent set of traits in an organism familiar to the students makes it easy to illustrate principles of transmission and population genetics. The one-semester course consists primarily of sophomores and juniors who have either taken a one-semester introductory biology course, a one-semester cell biology course, or have a strong high school biology background. The students are given a handout and asked to determine the genotype at seven unlinked loci of at least one cat. To fill out the form, the students have to grasp such concepts as dominance, incomplete dominance, temperature-sensitive mutations, epistatic interactions, sex linkage, and variable expressivity. Completing the form reinforces these concepts as they observe the cat's phenotype and fill in the genotype. I then analyze the collected data and use it in my lectures on population genetics to illustrate the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, calculate allele frequencies, and use statistics. This allows the students to look at population genetics in a very positive light and provides concrete examples of some often misunderstood principles. PMID:10880464

  7. Diabetic cataracts: different incidence between dogs and cats.

    PubMed

    Salgado, D; Reusch, C; Spiess, B

    2000-06-01

    Diabetes mellitus is one of the most common endocrinopathies in the dog and cat. Diabetic cataract primarily affects the canine species and is rarely observed in the cat. It has been proposed that the incidence of cataracts in diabetic dogs is high because many of these patients have significant hyperglycemia despite insulin therapy. Age, gender, levels of serum glucose (before and during insulin therapy) and cataract formation were evaluated, retrospectively, in 23 dogs and 22 cats with diabetes mellitus. In the canine population, the groups with the highest frequency of presentation were females and sexually intact animals. In contrast, males and neutered animals were the most prevalent groups in the feline diabetic population. Over 80% of diabetic cats and dogs were older than 7 years. Our results confirm the almost total lack of cataracts in diabetic cats, while they were present in more than half of the dogs. A relation between the incidence of cataracts and the correspondent level of hyperglycemia in the canine and feline species could not be established. The estimation of the relative risk for the development of cataracts in diabetic dogs shows that some population groups have a higher probability for suffering from this ocular alteration. A relation between relative risk and the correspondent level of hyperglycemia in the various groups was not found. This fact indicates that other factors are involved in the unequal appearance of diabetic cataracts in dogs and cats. PMID:10892302

  8. Cat scratch disease.

    PubMed

    Bozhkov, V; Madjov, R; Plachkov, I; Arnaudov, P; Chernopolsky, P; Krasnaliev, I

    2014-01-01

    Approximately 24,000 people are infected with cat scratch disease (CSD) every year. CSD is caused by the bacteria Bartonella henselae, a gram-negative bacteria most often transmitted to humans through a bite or scratch from an infected cat or kitten. Although CSD is often a benign and self-limiting condition, it can affect any major organ system in the body, manifesting in different ways and sometimes leading to lifelong sequelae. It is a disease that is often overlooked in primary care because of the wide range of symptom presentation and relative rarity of serious complications. It is important for health care providers to recognize patients at risk for CSD, know what laboratory testing and treatments are available, and be aware of complications that may arise from this disease in the future. PMID:25199244

  9. The square cat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Putterman, E.; Raz, O.

    2008-11-01

    We present a simple two-dimensional model of a "cat"—a body with zero angular momentum that can rotate itself with no external forces. The model is used to explain the nature of a gauge theory and to illustrate the importance of noncommutative operators. We compare the free-space cat in Newtonian mechanics and the same problem in Aristotelian mechanics at low Reynolds numbers (with the velocity proportional to the force rather than to the acceleration). This example shows the analogy between (angular) momentum in Newtonian mechanics and (torque) force in Aristotelian mechanics. We discuss a topological invariant common to the model in free space and at low Reynolds number.

  10. Seroprevalence of West Nile Virus in Feral Horses on Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, Nevada, United States

    PubMed Central

    Franson, J. Christian; Hofmeister, Erik K.; Collins, Gail H.; Dusek, Robert J.

    2011-01-01

    We screened 1,397 feral horses (Equus caballus) on Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, Nevada, United States, for IgM and IgG against flavivirus during 2004–2006, 2008, and 2009. Positive serum samples were tested for neutralizing antibodies to West Nile virus (WNV) and St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV). One animal was positive for antibody against WNV in 2004, but all others tested in 2004–2006 were negative. In 2008 and 2009, we found evidence of increasing seropositive horses with age, whereas seroprevalence of WNV decreased from 19% in 2008 to 7.2% in 2009. No horses were positive for antibody against SLEV. Being unvaccinated, feral horses can be useful for WNV surveillance. PMID:21460023

  11. Seroprevalence of West Nile Virus in feral horses on Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, Nevada, United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Franson, J. Christian; Hofmeister, Erik K.; Collins, Gail H.; Dusek, Robert J.

    2011-01-01

    We screened 1,397 feral horses (Equus caballus) on Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, Nevada, United States, for IgM and IgG against flavivirus during 2004–2006, 2008, and 2009. Positive serum samples were tested for neutralizing antibodies to West Nile virus (WNV) and St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV). One animal was positive for antibody against WNV in 2004, but all others tested in 2004–2006 were negative. In 2008 and 2009, we found evidence of increasing seropositive horses with age, whereas seroprevalence of WNV decreased from 19% in 2008 to 7.2% in 2009. No horses were positive for antibody against SLEV. Being unvaccinated, feral horses can be useful for WNV surveillance.

  12. Continuous feral horse grazing and grazing exclusion in mountain pampean grasslands in Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Villalobos, A. E.; Zalba, S. M.

    2010-09-01

    This paper evaluates changes in the composition and structure of plant communities and plant functional groups associated with the continuous presence of feral horses in mountain pampean grasslands in Argentina in order to explore the potential effects of horse removal on vegetation restoration. Specific and functional richness, diversity, evenness, spatial heterogeneity and above-ground biomass were compared between areas subjected to ten years of intensive grazing by horses and exclosures of the same age. Forbs, shrubs and rosettes were more abundant after ten years of grazing, while the spatial heterogeneity of perennial grasses was higher in long-term grazed areas. Nevertheless, grasslands showed good recovery after horse removal, with greater species diversity and evenness, higher abundance of perennial grasses, greater above-ground biomass and lower percentages of exotic species. An understanding of the effect of feral animals on plant communities will lead to the design of a strategy of adaptive management and monitoring tools for measuring the condition of grasslands.

  13. Seasonal variation of the upper digestive tract yeast flora of feral pigeons

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kocan, R.M.; Hasenclever, H.F.

    1974-01-01

    Feral pigeons were sampled over a 16-month period to determine whether their normal yeast flora varied according to season. Candida albicans and Saccharomyces telluris occurred during the entire sampling period, with C. albicans reaching its highest levels between August and January and S. telluris peaking from March through May. Candida krusei was present for 10 months but exhibited no predictable variation in density. Candida tropicalis, C. guilliermondii and Geotrichum were isolated on several occasions while C. lusitaniae, C. pseudotropicalis and Torulopsis glabrata were each isolated once. The high levels of infection and frequency of occurrence of some yeast species make the feral pigeon highly suspect as a carrier and disseminator of potentially pathogenic yeast.

  14. Ixodid ticks on white-tailed deer and feral swine in Florida.

    PubMed

    Allan, S A; Simmons, L A; Burridge, M J

    2001-06-01

    A state-wide survey was conducted in Florida during the 1997-99 hunting seasons to examine white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) and feral swine (Sus scrofa) for potential indigenous vectors of the rickettsial agent of heartwater, Cowdria ruminantium. A total of 504 white-tailed deer and 166 feral swine was examined from 30 wildlife management areas across the state. Amblyomma maculatum, an experimental vector of C. ruminantium, was common on both deer and feral swine throughout the state. Of the collection of 3,169 ticks, 34.5% were Ixodes scapularis Say, 34.0% Amblyomma americanum (L.), 25.5% Amblyomma maculatum Koch, 5.8% Dermacentor variabilis (Say), 0.4% Ixodes affinis Neumann, 0.03% Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Latreille) and 0.01% Amblyomma auricularium (Conil). The only exotic tick collected was A. auricularium, which is found on armadillos in Central and South America and is not known to be associated with any disease. Overall, the most prevalent species on deer were I. scapularis (51.1%) and A. maculatum (35.8%), with A. americanum less prevalent (16.0%) and D. variabilis (3.0%) and I. affinis (1.9%) rare. On feral swine, the most prevalent species were I. scapularis (69.7%) and D. variabilis (56.9%), with A. maculatum (16.2%) and A. americanum (4.6%) less common. The geographic distribution of ticks differed significantly throughout the state. Both A. maculatum and Dermacentor variabilis were more prevalent on deer from southern Florida compared to northern and central Florida. In contrast, A. americanum were more prevalent in northern and central Florida but rare in southern Florida, and I. scapularis were more common in southern compared to northern Florida. These geographic differences may reflect differences in the risk of tick-borne diseases to domestic animals, wildlife and humans within Florida. PMID:11469190

  15. Efficacy of hand-broadcast application of baits containing 0.005% diphacinone in reducing rat populations in Hawaiian forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Foote, David; Lindsey, Gerald D.; Perry, Charlotte F.; Spurr, Eric

    2013-01-01

    Introduced black rats (Rattus rattus), Polynesian rats (R. exulans/i>), and Norway rats (R. norvegicus) impact insular bird, plant, and invertebrate populations worldwide. We investigated the efficacy of hand-broadcast application of Ramik® Green containing 0.005% diphacinone for rodent control in paired 4-ha treatment and non-treatment plots in both wet and mesic forest in Hawaiʽi. Radio telemetry of black rats, the predominant species, indicated 100% mortality in both treatment plots within about one week of bait application. Live trapping and non-toxic census bait block monitoring two to four weeks after each of 12 repeat bait applications in the wet forest, and three repeat bait applications in the mesic forest, indicated rat abundance was reduced on average by 84–88%. However, reinvasion could have occurred within this time. Rat populations in the treatment plots usually recovered to pre-poison levels within two to five months. House mice (Mus musculus), Indian mongooses (Herpestes auropunctatus), and feral cats (Felis catus) also ate bait or other animals that had eaten bait. This study demonstrates the efficacy of ground-based broadcast toxicant baits for the control of rats in Hawaiian montane wet forests.

  16. Mucopolysaccharidosis VI in cats - clarification regarding genetic testing.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Leslie A; Grahn, Robert A; Genova, Francesca; Beccaglia, Michela; Hopwood, John J; Longeri, Maria

    2016-01-01

    The release of new DNA-based diagnostic tools has increased tremendously in companion animals. Over 70 different DNA variants are now known for the cat, including DNA variants in disease-associated genes and genes causing aesthetically interesting traits. The impact genetic tests have on animal breeding and health management is significant because of the ability to control the breeding of domestic cats, especially breed cats. If used properly, genetic testing can prevent the production of diseased animals, causing the reduction of the frequency of the causal variant in the population, and, potentially, the eventual eradication of the disease. However, testing of some identified DNA variants may be unwarranted and cause undo strife within the cat breeding community and unnecessary reduction of gene pools and availability of breeding animals. Testing for mucopolysaccharidosis Type VI (MPS VI) in cats, specifically the genetic testing of the L476P (c.1427T>C) and the D520N (c.1558G>A) variants in arylsulfatase B (ARSB), has come under scrutiny. No health problems are associated with the D520N (c.1558G>A) variant, however, breeders that obtain positive results for this variant are speculating as to possible correlation with health concerns. Birman cats already have a markedly reduced gene pool and have a high frequency of the MPS VI D520N variant. Further reduction of the gene pool by eliminating cats that are heterozygous or homozygous for only the MPS VI D520N variant could lead to more inbreeding depression effects on the breed population. Herein is debated the genetic testing of the MPS VI D520N variant in cats. Surveys from different laboratories suggest the L476P (c.1427T>C) disease-associated variant should be monitored in the cat breed populations, particularly breeds with Siamese derivations and outcrosses. However, the D520N has no evidence of association with disease in cats and testing is not recommended in the absence of L476P genotyping. Selection

  17. Prevalence of Haemoplasma Infections in Stray Cats in Northern Italy

    PubMed Central

    Spada, Eva; Proverbio, Daniela; Della Pepa, Alessandra; Perego, Roberta; Ferro, Elisabetta

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the prevalence of feline haemoplasma infections in a number of stray cat colonies in Milan, Northern Italy. Blood samples from 260 stray cats were evaluated, with conventional PCR, for the presence of DNA associated with Mycoplasma haemofelis (Mhf) and “Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum” (CMhm). Odd ratios (OR) were calculated to identify risk factors for haemoplasma infections. PCR was positive in 86 out of 260 subjects (33.1%), with a prevalence of 10.8% (28/260 cats) for Mhf and 22.3% (58/260 cats) for CMhm. No coinfections were registered. There were significant associations between infections and season of sampling, that is, a negative association between winter sampling and a haemoplasma positive status (OR = 0.29, P = 0.001), or CMhm positive status (OR = 0.29, P = 0.01). Haemoplasma infections are common in stray cats in Milan. Thus, domestic cats with outdoor access should be routinely monitored and treated for ectoparasites to minimize risks of disease acquisition. Moreover, as these infections are transmitted via blood, feline blood donors from this area should be screened by PCR and preferably be drawn from a population of indoor cats regularly treated for fleas. PMID:24707436

  18. Genetic susceptibility to feline infectious peritonitis in Birman cats.

    PubMed

    Golovko, Lyudmila; Lyons, Leslie A; Liu, Hongwei; Sørensen, Anne; Wehnert, Suzanne; Pedersen, Niels C

    2013-07-01

    Genetic factors are presumed to influence the incidence of feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), especially among pedigreed cats. However, proof for the existence of such factors has been limited and mainly anecdotal. Therefore, we sought evidence for genetic susceptibility to FIP using feline high density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) arrays in a genome-wide association study (GWAS). Birman cats were chosen for GWAS because they are highly inbred and suffer a high incidence of FIP. DNA from 38 Birman cats that died of FIP and 161 healthy cats from breeders in Denmark and USA were selected for genotyping using 63K SNPs distributed across the feline genome. Danish and American Birman cats were closely related and the populations were therefore combined and analyzed in two manners: (1) all cases (FIP) vs. all controls (healthy) regardless of age, and (2) cases 1½ years of age and younger (most susceptible) vs. controls 2 years of age and older (most resistant). GWAS of the second cohort was most productive in identifying significant genome-wide associations between case and control cats. Four peaks of association with FIP susceptibility were identified, with two being identified on both analyses. Five candidate genes ELMO1, RRAGA, TNFSF10, ERAP1 and ERAP2, all relevant to what is known about FIP virus pathogenesis, were identified but no single association was fully concordant with the disease phenotype. Difficulties in doing GWAS in cats and interrogating complex genetic traits were discussed. PMID:23619280

  19. High Prevalence of Covert Infection With Gastrointestinal Helminths in Cats.

    PubMed

    Little, Susan; Adolph, Chris; Downie, Kathryn; Snider, Tim; Reichard, Mason

    2015-01-01

    Fecal flotation is routinely used to identify feline helminth infections in clinical practice, but it is known to have limitations of sensitivity, particularly for cestodes. To determine the prevalence of helminths in a contemporary population of cats and evaluate the ability of fecal flotation to detect these infections, helminths were recovered from intestinal tracts removed from 116 adult cats humanely euthanized by an animal control shelter in northeastern Oklahoma. Results were compared to those of fecal flotation performed using both passive and centrifugal techniques. Helminths were identified in 78/116 (67.2%) cats, including Toxocara cati (48/116; 41.4%), Ancylostoma tubaeforme (8/116; 6.9%), Dipylidium caninum (40/116; 34.5%), and Taenia taeniaeformis (30/116; 25.9%). Cats with T. cati were significantly more likely to harbor T. taeniaeformis (P = .001) than cats without ascarids. Centrifugal fecal flotation with sugar solution identified 37/48 (77.1%) T. cati infections, 8/30 (26.7%) T. taeniaeformis infections, and no D. caninum infections. Proglottids were detected on external examination in 19.0% (12/63) of cats with cestodes. Cestodes were present in over half of the cats examined in this study, but the majority of these infections were not evident by the detection of external proglottids or recovery of characteristic stages on fecal flotation. PMID:26535453

  20. Genetic Susceptibility to Feline Infectious Peritonitis in Birman Cats

    PubMed Central

    Golovko, Lyudmila; Lyons, Leslie A.; Liu, Hongwei; Sorensen, Anne; Wehnert, Suzanne; Pedersen, Niels C.

    2015-01-01

    Genetic factors are presumed to influence the incidence of feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), especially among pedigreed cats. However, proof for the existence of such factors has been limited and mainly anecdotal. Therefore, we sought evidence for genetic susceptibility to FIP using feline high density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) arrays in a genome-wide association study (GWAS). Birman cats were chosen for GWAS because they are highly inbred and suffer a high incidence of FIP. DNA from 38 Birman cats that died of FIP and 161 healthy cats from breeders in Denmark and USA were selected for genotyping using 63K SNPs distributed across the feline genome. Danish and American Birman cats were closely related and the populations were therefore combined and analyzed in two manners: 1) all cases (FIP) vs. all controls (healthy) regardless of age, and 2) cases 1–1/2 years of age and younger (most susceptible) vs. controls 2 years of age and older (most resistant). GWAS of the second cohort was most productive in identifying significant genome-wide associations between case and control cats. Four peaks of association with FIP susceptibility were identified, with two being identified on both analyses. Five candidate genes ELMO1, RRAGA, TNFSF10, ERAP1 and ERAP2, all relevant to what is known about FIP virus pathogenesis, were identified but no single association was fully concordant with the disease phenotype. Difficulties in doing GWAS in cats and interrogating complex genetic traits were discussed. PMID:23619280

  1. Utilization of sugarcane habitat by feral pig (Sus scrofa) in northern tropical Queensland: evidence from the stable isotope composition of hair.

    PubMed

    Wurster, Christopher M; Robertson, Jack; Westcott, David A; Dryden, Bart; Zazzo, Antoine; Bird, Michael I

    2012-01-01

    Feral pigs (Sus scrofa) are an invasive species that disrupt ecosystem functioning throughout their introduced range. In tropical environments, feral pigs are associated with predation and displacement of endangered species, modification of habitat, and act as a vector for the spread of exotic vegetation and disease. Across many parts of their introduced range, the diet of feral pigs is poorly known. Although the remote location and difficult terrain of far north Queensland makes observing feral pig behavior difficult, feral pigs are perceived to seek refuge in World Heritage tropical rainforests and seasonally 'crop raid' into lowland sugarcane crops. Thus, identifying how feral pigs are using different components of the landscape is important to the design of management strategies. We used the stable isotope composition of captured feral pigs to determine the extent of rainforest and sugarcane habitat usage. Recently grown hair (basal hair) from feral pigs captured in remote rainforest indicated pigs met their dietary needs solely within this habitat. Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope values of basal hair from feral pigs captured near sugarcane plantations were more variable, with some individuals estimated to consume over 85% of their diet within a sugarcane habitat, while a few consumed as much as 90% of their diet from adjacent forested environments. We estimated whether feral pigs switch habitats by sequentially sampling δ(13)C and δ(15)N values of long tail hair from a subset of seven captured animals, and demonstrate that four of these individuals moved between habitats. Our results indicate that feral pigs utilize both sugarcane and forest habitats, and can switch between these resources. PMID:22957029

  2. Hypereosinophilic syndrome in two cats.

    PubMed

    Takeuchi, Yoshinori; Matsuura, Shinobu; Fujino, Yasuhito; Nakajima, Mayumi; Takahashi, Masashi; Nakashima, Ko; Sakai, Yusuke; Uetsuka, Koji; Ohno, Koichi; Nakayama, Hiroyuki; Tsujimoto, Hajime

    2008-10-01

    Two cats showing chronic vomiting, diarrhea and weight loss were found to have leukocytosis with marked eosinophilia. Both cats were diagnosed with hypereosinophilic syndrome by the findings of increased eosinophils and their precursors in the bone marrow, eosinophilic infiltration into multiple organs, and exclusion of other causes for eosinophilia. Although cytoreductive chemotherapy with hydroxycarbamide and prednisolone was performed, these two cats died 48 days and 91 days after the initial presentation. PMID:18981665

  3. Renal effects of Dirofilaria immitis in experimentally and naturally infected cats.

    PubMed

    Atkins, C E; Vaden, S L; Arther, R G; Ciszewski, D K; Davis, W L; Ensley, S M; Chopade, N H

    2011-03-22

    Canine heartworm infection has been associated with glomerular disease and proteinuria. We hypothesized that proteinuria, likely due to glomerular damage, would also be found in cats experimentally and naturally infected with Dirofilaria immitis. Two populations of cats were evaluated, including 80 that were each experimentally infected with 60 infective heartworm larvae as part of a drug safety study, and 31 that were naturally infected with D. immitis. Each had a control population with which to be compared. In the experimentally infected group, we evaluated urine from 64 cats. Ten of these cats were shown to have microalbuminuria 8 months post infection. No cat refractory to infection with larvae and no cats from the control group demonstrated microalbuminuria. All 10 microalbuminuric cats were shown to have significant proteinuria, as measured by the urine protein:creatinine ratio. There was a subtle, but significant, association between worm burden and proteinuria, and although the presence of adult heartworms was required for the development of proteinuria, both microfilaremic and amicrofilaremic cats were affected. Neither the presence of circulating heartworm antibodies and antigen nor the presence of antigenuria predicted the development of proteinuria. Both heavily infected cats (5-25 adult heartworms) and cats with worm burdens compatible with natural infections (1-4 adult heartworms) developed proteinuria, and the relative numbers of cats so affected were similar between heavily and more lightly infected cats. Naturally infected cats, for which only dipstick protein determinations were available, were shown to have a significantly greater incidence of proteinuria (90% vs 35%) than did those in an age- and gender-matched control population. Additionally, the proteinuria in heartworm-infected cats was 3- to 5-fold greater in severity. We conclude that cats infected with mature adult heartworms are at risk for developing proteinuria and that this is

  4. A microsatellite analysis of five Colonial Spanish horse populations of the southeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Conant, E K; Juras, R; Cothran, E G

    2012-02-01

    The domestic horse (Equus caballus) was re-introduced to the Americas by Spanish explorers. Although horses from other parts of Europe were subsequently introduced, some New World populations maintain characteristics ascribed to their Spanish heritage. The southeastern United States has a history of Spanish invasion and settlement, and this influence on local feral horse populations includes two feral-recaptured breeds: the Florida Cracker and the Marsh Tacky, both of which are classified as Colonial Spanish horses. The feral Banker horses found on islands off the coast of North Carolina, which include, among others, the Shackleford Banks, the Corolla and the Ocracoke, are also Colonial Spanish horses. Herein we analyse 15 microsatellite loci from 532 feral and 2583 domestic horses in order to compare the genetic variation of these five Colonial Spanish Horse populations to 40 modern horse breeds. We find that the Corolla horse has very low heterozygosity and that both the Corolla and Ocracoke populations have a low mean number of alleles. We also find that the Florida Cracker population has a heterozygosity deficit. In addition, we find evidence of similarity of the Shackleford Banks, Marsh Tacky and Florida Cracker populations to New World Iberian horse breeds, while the origins of the other two populations are less clear. PMID:22221025

  5. The Influence of Feral Horse Activity on Water and Shellfish (Gukensia demissa) Quality Along the Western Coast of Assateague Island National Seashore, Maryland

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feral horses (Equus caballus) inhabit portions of the Western United States and some barrier islands along the East Coast. Approximately 150 feral horses are located on Assateague Island National Seashore (ASIS), Maryland, a barrier island popular with tourists and recreational fishermen. This stu...

  6. Assessing the dynamics of wild populations

    SciTech Connect

    Eberhardt, L.L.

    1985-01-01

    Lotka's equations summarizing population dynamics can be approximated by functional models of the survivorship and reproductive curves, incorporating three stages of survival and reproduction, respectively. An abbreviated form uses a single reproductive parameter and two survival values. Survivorship and reproductive curves were fitted to data on northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus), domestic and feral sheep, white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), grizzly bears (Ursus arctos), African buffalo (Syncerus caffer), free-ranging horses, and fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus). Data for 10 species suggest a useful relationship between senescence parameters. A bias due to senescence may lead to serious underestimation of survival rates. Observed annual rates of increase of 18-20% for feral horses, 16% for southern fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella), and 60% for white-tailed deer are compatible with observed population parameters. 43 references, 11 figures, 3 tables.

  7. Feeders of Free-Roaming Cats: Personal Characteristics, Feeding Practices, and Data on Cat Health and Welfare in an Urban Setting of Israel

    PubMed Central

    Gunther, Idit; Raz, Tal; Even Zor, Yehonatan; Bachowski, Yuval; Klement, Eyal

    2016-01-01

    Cat feeders serve as an important source of available food for free-roaming cats (FRCs) and can play a central role in providing data on FRC distribution, welfare, and health. Data on cat feeder personalities as well as a better understanding of their feeding practices offer relevance for decision making concerning FRC population control strategies. The current study surveyed 222 FRC feeders who responded to a municipal trap-neuter-return (TNR) campaign in an Israeli central urban setting. The aim of the study was to describe their personal characteristics, feeding practices, and the FRC populations they feed. Feeders were divided into four groups according to the number of cats they claimed to feed per day (group 1: fed up to 5 cats, group 2: fed 6–10 cats, group 3: fed 11–20 cats, and group 4: fed ≥21 cats). Most feeders were women (81%), with a median age of 58 years (range 18–81). The feeders reported an overall feeding of 3337 cats in 342 different feeding locations. Feeders of group 4 comprised 15.31% (n = 34) of all feeders but fed 56% (n = 1869) of the FRC in 37.42% (n = 128) of the feeding locations. “Heavy” feeders (groups 3 and 4) reported that they traveled significantly longer distances in order to feed the cats. Commercial dry food consisted of 90% of the food they provided, with 66% of them feeding once a day, with less food per cat per day than the other feeder groups. Interestingly, “heavy” feeders were usually singles, had on average fewer siblings, a clear preference for owning cats as pets, and lived in lower income neighborhoods. According to the feeders’ reports on the FRC populations they fed, 69.7% (2325/3337) cats were neutered and 11.8% (395/3337) were kittens. In addition, they reported that 1.6% (54/3337) of the cats were limping, 2% (67/3337) suffered from a systemic disease, 4% (135/3337) had skin lesions, and 3.9% (130/3337) were suffering from a chronic disability. Abundance of kittens and morbidity

  8. Feeders of Free-Roaming Cats: Personal Characteristics, Feeding Practices, and Data on Cat Health and Welfare in an Urban Setting of Israel.

    PubMed

    Gunther, Idit; Raz, Tal; Even Zor, Yehonatan; Bachowski, Yuval; Klement, Eyal

    2016-01-01

    Cat feeders serve as an important source of available food for free-roaming cats (FRCs) and can play a central role in providing data on FRC distribution, welfare, and health. Data on cat feeder personalities as well as a better understanding of their feeding practices offer relevance for decision making concerning FRC population control strategies. The current study surveyed 222 FRC feeders who responded to a municipal trap-neuter-return (TNR) campaign in an Israeli central urban setting. The aim of the study was to describe their personal characteristics, feeding practices, and the FRC populations they feed. Feeders were divided into four groups according to the number of cats they claimed to feed per day (group 1: fed up to 5 cats, group 2: fed 6-10 cats, group 3: fed 11-20 cats, and group 4: fed ≥21 cats). Most feeders were women (81%), with a median age of 58 years (range 18-81). The feeders reported an overall feeding of 3337 cats in 342 different feeding locations. Feeders of group 4 comprised 15.31% (n = 34) of all feeders but fed 56% (n = 1869) of the FRC in 37.42% (n = 128) of the feeding locations. "Heavy" feeders (groups 3 and 4) reported that they traveled significantly longer distances in order to feed the cats. Commercial dry food consisted of 90% of the food they provided, with 66% of them feeding once a day, with less food per cat per day than the other feeder groups. Interestingly, "heavy" feeders were usually singles, had on average fewer siblings, a clear preference for owning cats as pets, and lived in lower income neighborhoods. According to the feeders' reports on the FRC populations they fed, 69.7% (2325/3337) cats were neutered and 11.8% (395/3337) were kittens. In addition, they reported that 1.6% (54/3337) of the cats were limping, 2% (67/3337) suffered from a systemic disease, 4% (135/3337) had skin lesions, and 3.9% (130/3337) were suffering from a chronic disability. Abundance of kittens and morbidity rate were

  9. [Glomerulonephritis in dogs and cats].

    PubMed

    Reinacher, M; Frese, K

    1991-04-01

    Immunohistology and special staining of plastic sections allow diagnosis and differentiation of subtypes of glomerulonephritis in dogs. Frequency and clinical importance of these forms of glomerulonephritis vary significantly. In cats, glomerulonephritis occurs frequently in FIV-positive cats but is rare in animals suffering from persistent FeLV infection or FIP. PMID:2068715

  10. College Students and Their Cats

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weinstein, Lawrence; Alexander, Ralph

    2010-01-01

    Twenty-two Siamese and 32 mixed breed cats' personalities were rated by their respective college student owners and compared. Further, the owners' self rated personality traits were correlated with the pets'; significant Siamese and Mixed differences and correlations were obtained. These are the first data to examine breed of cat on a personality…

  11. CONTRACT ADMINISTRATIVE TRACKING SYSTEM (CATS)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Contract Administrative Tracking System (CATS) was developed in response to an ORD NHEERL, Mid-Continent Ecology Division (MED)-recognized need for an automated tracking and retrieval system for Cost Reimbursable Level of Effort (CR/LOE) Contracts. CATS is an Oracle-based app...

  12. Determining Home Range and Preferred Habitat of Feral Horses on the Nevada National Security Site Using Geographic Information Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Burns, Ashley V.

    2014-05-30

    Feral horses (Equus caballus) are free-roaming descendants of domesticated horses and legally protected by the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971, which mandates how feral horses and burros should be managed and protected on federal lands. Using a geographic information system to determine the home range and suitable habitat of feral horses on the federally managed Nevada National Security Site can enable wildlife biologists in making best management practice recommendations. Home range was estimated at 88.1 square kilometers. Site suitability was calculated for elevation, forage, slope, water presence and horse observations. These variables were combined in successive iterations into one polygon. Suitability rankings established that 85 square kilometers are most suitable habitat, with 2,052 square kilometers of good habitat 1,252 square kilometers of fair habitat and 122 square kilometers of least suitable habitat.

  13. The absence of anti-rabies antibody in the sera of feral raccoons (Procyon lotor) captured in Hokkaido, Japan.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Satoshi; Asano, Makoto; Motoi, Yurie; Makino, Takashi; Yamada, Akio

    2004-06-01

    Feral raccoons captured in Hokkaido, Japan were examined for the presence of rabies virus neutralizing antibody (VNA). Between 2000 to 2002, 741 serum samples were collected and then subjected to VNA titer determination by rapid fluorescent focus inhibition test (RFFIT). Sera showing RFFIT titers of > or =1:25 have been considered as positive according to previous reports. VNA was detected in none of serum samples from the feral raccoons. The present study provides valuable background information for rabies prevention in Japan. The potential risk of raccoon-derived rabies in the wilderness has been of concern because of the increasing number of feral raccoons originally introduced from rabies-endemic countries. The continuous monitoring of sick and/or dead wild raccoons would help to prevent an epidemic spread of raccoon rabies. PMID:15218220

  14. A Comparison of Antiserum and Protein A as Secondary Reagents to Assess Toxoplasma gondii Antibody Titers in Cats and Spotted Hyenas.

    PubMed

    Wait, L F; Srour, A; Smith, I G; Cassey, P; Sims, S K; McAllister, M M

    2015-06-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is a protozoal parasite with worldwide distribution that is able to infect a wide variety of mammals and birds. Our main goal was to screen for T. gondii antibody titers in a previously untested species, the spotted hyena ( Crocuta crocuta); however, this goal first required us to investigate serological procedures that could be suitable for hyenas. Cats are the closest domestic relations of hyenas, so T. gondii antibody titers were first compared in 26 feral cats with specific or nonspecific fluorophore-labeled secondary reagents, i.e., anti-cat IgG or protein A. Substitution of anti-cat IgG with protein A caused a statistically significant drop in titer measurements in cats (P = 0.01) with a reduction of the geometric mean titer equivalent to 1 doubling-dilution. The same procedures were then applied to captive spotted hyenas. Titers measured in 9 of 10 hyenas were identical whether anti-cat IgG or protein A was used as the secondary reagent: 5 had titers <1:16, 2 had titers of 1:16, and 2 had titers of 1:32. One hyena had maximum titers of 1:64 or 1:32 when anti-cat IgG or protein A was used, respectively. The use of protein A as the secondary reagent in serologic assays can be applied to a range of mammalian species and seems unlikely to affect test specificity; however, the use of protein A may reduce test sensitivity, as suggested in the present study using cats. Despite a control program, some exposure to T. gondii had occurred in the Zoo's spotted hyenas. PMID:25710628

  15. Neurolymphomatosis in a cat

    PubMed Central

    SAKURAI, Masashi; AZUMA, Kazushi; NAGAI, Arata; FUJIOKA, Toru; SUNDEN, Yuji; SHIMADA, Akinori; MORITA, Takehito

    2016-01-01

    A 9-year-old male mixed breed cat showed chronic progressive neurological symptoms, which are represented by ataxia and seizures. At necropsy, spinal roots and spinal ganglions at the level of sixth cervical nerve to second thoracic nerve were bilaterally swollen and replaced by white mass lesions. Right brachial plexus and cranial nerves (III, V and VII) were also swollen. A mass lesion was found in the right frontal lobe of the cerebrum. Histologically, neoplastic lymphocytes extensively involved the peripheral nerves, and they infiltrated into the cerebral and spinal parenchyma according to the peripheral nerve tract. Immunohistochemically, most neoplastic lymphocytes were positive for CD20. The clinical and histological features in this case resemble those of neurolymphomatosis in humans. PMID:26960326

  16. Like herding cats.

    PubMed

    Muller-Smith, P

    1997-12-01

    In an effort to be a good manager, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that knowledge workers require a unique approach from their manager. Because nurses are independent and capable individuals that prosper in an environment that recognizes them as knowledge workers, nurse managers often find that traditional management techniques are not sufficient. Trying to manage all of the nurses on a unit as a single group is much like trying to herd cats. It might be less frustrating for the nurse manager to lead gently rather than manage with a firm hand. Warren Bennis suggests that this approach may provide a valuable key to successfully managing in a world of constant change. PMID:9464034

  17. Neurolymphomatosis in a cat.

    PubMed

    Sakurai, Masashi; Azuma, Kazushi; Nagai, Arata; Fujioka, Toru; Sunden, Yuji; Shimada, Akinori; Morita, Takehito

    2016-07-01

    A 9-year-old male mixed breed cat showed chronic progressive neurological symptoms, which are represented by ataxia and seizures. At necropsy, spinal roots and spinal ganglions at the level of sixth cervical nerve to second thoracic nerve were bilaterally swollen and replaced by white mass lesions. Right brachial plexus and cranial nerves (III, V and VII) were also swollen. A mass lesion was found in the right frontal lobe of the cerebrum. Histologically, neoplastic lymphocytes extensively involved the peripheral nerves, and they infiltrated into the cerebral and spinal parenchyma according to the peripheral nerve tract. Immunohistochemically, most neoplastic lymphocytes were positive for CD20. The clinical and histological features in this case resemble those of neurolymphomatosis in humans. PMID:26960326

  18. Diagnostic characterization of a feral swine herd enzootically infected with Brucella.

    PubMed

    Stoffregen, William C; Olsen, Steven C; Jack Wheeler, C; Bricker, Betsy J; Palmer, Mitchell V; Jensen, Allen E; Halling, Shirley M; Alt, David P

    2007-05-01

    Eighty feral swine were trapped from a herd that had been documented to be seropositive for Brucella and which had been used for Brucella abortus RB51 vaccine trials on a 7,100-hectare tract of land in South Carolina. The animals were euthanized and complete necropsies were performed. Samples were taken for histopathology, Brucella culture, and Brucella serology. Brucella was cultured from 62 (77.5%) animals. Brucella suis was isolated from 55 animals (68.8%), and all isolates were biovar 1. Brucella abortus was isolated from 28 animals (35.0%), and isolates included field strain biovar 1 (21 animals; 26.3%), vaccine strain Brucella abortus S19 (8 animals, 10.0%), and vaccine strain Brucella abortus RB51 (6 animals, 7.5%). Males were significantly more likely to be culture positive than females (92.9% vs. 60.6%). Thirty-nine animals (48.8%) were seropositive. Males also had a significantly higher seropositivity rate than females (61.9% vs. 34.2%). The relative sensitivity rates were significantly higher for the standard tube test (44.6%) and fluorescence polarization assay (42.6%) than the card agglutination test (13.1%). Lesions consistent with Brucella infection were commonly found in the animals surveyed and included inflammatory lesions of the lymph nodes, liver, kidney, and male reproductive organs, which ranged from lymphoplasmacytic to pyogranulomatous with necrosis. This is the first report of an apparent enzootic Brucella abortus infection in a feral swine herd suggesting that feral swine may serve as a reservoir of infection for Brucella abortus as well as Brucella suis for domestic livestock. PMID:17459850

  19. Isolation of a New Chlamydia species from the Feral Sacred Ibis (Threskiornis aethiopicus): Chlamydia ibidis

    PubMed Central

    Vorimore, Fabien; Hsia, Ru-ching; Huot-Creasy, Heather; Bastian, Suzanne; Deruyter, Lucie; Passet, Anne; Sachse, Konrad; Bavoil, Patrik; Myers, Garry; Laroucau, Karine

    2013-01-01

    Investigations conducted on feral African Sacred Ibises (Threskiornisaethiopicus) in western France led to the isolation of a strain with chlamydial genetic determinants. Ultrastructural analysis, comparative sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA gene, ompA, and of a concatenate of 31 highly conserved genes, as well as determination of the whole genome sequence confirmed the relatedness of the new isolate to members of the Chlamydiaceae, while, at the same time demonstrating a unique position outside the currently recognized species of this family. We propose to name this new chlamydial species Chlamydiaibidis. PMID:24073223

  20. Isolation of a New Chlamydia species from the Feral Sacred Ibis (Threskiornis aethiopicus): Chlamydia ibidis.

    PubMed

    Vorimore, Fabien; Hsia, Ru-Ching; Huot-Creasy, Heather; Bastian, Suzanne; Deruyter, Lucie; Passet, Anne; Sachse, Konrad; Bavoil, Patrik; Myers, Garry; Laroucau, Karine

    2013-01-01

    Investigations conducted on feral African Sacred Ibises (Threskiornisaethiopicus) in western France led to the isolation of a strain with chlamydial genetic determinants. Ultrastructural analysis, comparative sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA gene, ompA, and of a concatenate of 31 highly conserved genes, as well as determination of the whole genome sequence confirmed the relatedness of the new isolate to members of the Chlamydiaceae, while, at the same time demonstrating a unique position outside the currently recognized species of this family. We propose to name this new chlamydial species Chlamydiaibidis . PMID:24073223

  1. A genome wide study of genetic adaptation to high altitude in feral Andean Horses of the páramo

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Life at high altitude results in physiological and metabolic challenges that put strong evolutionary pressure on performance due to oxidative stress, UV radiation and other factors dependent on the natural history of the species. To look for genes involved in altitude adaptation in a large herbivore, this study explored genome differentiation between a feral population of Andean horses introduced by the Spanish in the 1500s to the high Andes and their Iberian breed relatives. Results Using allelic genetic models and Fst analyses of ~50 K single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) across the horse genome, 131 candidate genes for altitude adaptation were revealed (Bonferoni of p ≤ 2 × 10–7). Significant signals included the EPAS1 in the hypoxia-induction-pathway (HIF) that was previously discovered in human studies (p = 9.27 × 10-8); validating the approach and emphasizing the importance of this gene to hypoxia adaptation. Strong signals in the cytochrome P450 3A gene family (p = 1.5 ×10-8) indicate that other factors, such as highly endemic vegetation in altitude environments are also important in adaptation. Signals in tenuerin 2 (TENM2, p = 7.9 × 10-14) along with several other genes in the nervous system (gene categories representation p = 5.1 × 10-5) indicate the nervous system is important in altitude adaptation. Conclusions In this study of a large introduced herbivore, it becomes apparent that some gene pathways, such as the HIF pathway are universally important for high altitude adaptation in mammals, but several others may be selected upon based on the natural history of a species and the unique ecology of the altitude environment. PMID:24344830

  2. Trace metals, melanin-based pigmentation and their interaction influence immune parameters in feral pigeons (Columba livia).

    PubMed

    Chatelain, M; Gasparini, J; Frantz, A

    2016-04-01

    Understanding the effects of trace metals emitted by anthropogenic activities on wildlife is of great concern in urban ecology; yet, information on how they affect individuals, populations, communities and ecosystems remains scarce. In particular, trace metals may impact survival by altering the immune system response to parasites. Plumage melanin is assumed to influence the effects of trace metals on immunity owing to its ability to bind metal ions in feathers and its synthesis being coded by a pleiotropic gene. We thus hypothesized that trace metal exposure would interact with plumage colouration in shaping immune response. We experimentally investigated the interactive effect between exposure to an environmentally relevant range of zinc and/or lead and melanin-based plumage colouration on components of the immune system in feral pigeons (Columba livia). We found that zinc increased anti-keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH) IgY primary response maintenance, buffered the negative effect of lead on anti-KLH IgY secondary response maintenance and tended to increase T-cell mediated phytohaemagglutinin (PHA) skin response. Lead decreased the peak of the anti-KLH IgY secondary response. In addition, pheomelanic pigeons exhibited a higher secondary anti-KLH IgY response than did eumelanic ones. Finally, T-cell mediated PHA skin response decreased with increasing plumage eumelanin level of birds exposed to lead. Neither treatments nor plumage colouration correlated with endoparasite intensity. Overall, our study points out the effects of trace metals on some parameters of birds' immunity, independently from other confounding urbanization factors, and underlines the need to investigate their impacts on other life history traits and their consequences in the ecology and evolution of host-parasite interactions. PMID:26809976

  3. Prevalence of Rickettsia and Bartonella species in Spanish cats and their fleas.

    PubMed

    Gracia, María Jesús; Marcén, José Miguel; Pinal, Rocio; Calvete, Carlos; Rodes, Daniel

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of Bartonella henselae, Rickettsia felis, and Rickettsia typhi in fleas and companion cats (serum and claws) and to assess their presence as a function of host, host habitat, and level of parasitism. Eighty-nine serum and claw samples and 90 flea pools were collected. Cat sera were assayed by IFA for Bartonella henselae and Rickettssia species IgG antibodies. Conventional PCRs were performed on DNA extracted from nails and fleas collected from cats. A large portion (55.8%) of the feline population sampled was exposed to at least one of the three tested vector-borne pathogens. Seroreactivity to B. henselae was found in 50% of the feline studied population, and to R. felis in 16.3%. R. typhi antibodies were not found in any cat. No Bartonella sp. DNA was amplified from the claws. Flea samples from 41 cats (46%) showed molecular evidence for at least one pathogen; our study demonstrated a prevalence rate of 43.3 % of Rickettsia sp and 4.4% of Bartonella sp. in the studied flea population. None of the risk factors studied (cat's features, host habitat, and level of parasitation) was associated with either the serology or the PCR results for Bartonella sp. and Rickettsia sp.. Flea-associated infectious agents are common in cats and fleas and support the recommendation that stringent flea control should be maintained on cats. PMID:26611956

  4. A presumptive case of Baylisascaris procyonis in a feral green-cheeked Amazon parrot (Amazona viridigenalis).

    PubMed

    Done, Lisa B; Tamura, Yoko

    2014-03-01

    A feral green-cheeked Amazon parrot (Amazona viridigenalis), also known as the red-crowned Amazon, with generalized neurologic symptoms was found in Pasadena in Southern California and brought in for treatment. The bird was refractory to a wide variety of medications and supportive treatment. Tests for polyoma virus, psittacine beak and feather disease virus, and West Nile virus as well as Chlamydophila psittaci were negative. Hospitalized and home care continued for a total of 69 days. The bird was rehospitalized on day 66 for increasing severity of clinical signs and found 3 days later hanging with its head down, in respiratory arrest. Resuscitation was unsuccessful. There were no gross pathologic lesions. Histopathology showed a focal subcutaneous fungal caseous granuloma under the skin of the dorsum. Many sarcocysts morphologically consistent with Sarcocystis falcatula were found in the cytoplasm of the skeletal myofibers from skeletal muscles of different locations of this bird, a finding that was considered an incidental, clinically nonsignificant finding in this case. Necrosis with microscopic lesions typical of Baylisascaris spp. neural larva migrans was in the brain. Although multiple histologic serial sections of the brain were examined and a brain squash performed and analyzed, no Baylisascaris larvae were found. This is the first presumptive case of Baylisascaris in a feral psittacine. PMID:24712176

  5. Microbiological and parasitological survey of zoonotic agents in apparently healthy feral pigeons.

    PubMed

    Marenzoni, M L; Morganti, G; Moretta, I; Crotti, S; Agnetti, F; Moretti, A; Pitzurra, L; Casagrande Proietti, P; Sechi, P; Cenci-Goga, B; Franciosini, M P

    2016-01-01

    Microbiological and parasitological investigation was carried out on a colony of feral pigeons, located in a green area near the main hospital of a Central Italy city. One hundred pigeons were submitted to clinical examination. Cloacal swabs, grouped in pool of 4 samples, were analyzed to detect the presence of Coxiella burnetii, Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydophila spp. using a biomolecular procedure, while individual cloacal samples were examined for Salmonella spp., Campylobacter spp., and yeasts by means of a specific culture media. An ELISA test was used to determine the presence of Giardia spp., and Cryptosporidium spp. coproantigens. Individual serological samples were also tested with the modified agglutination test (MAT) in order to detect antibodies against Toxoplasma gondii. The pigeons did not show any clinical signs. The cloacal pools proved to be negative for C. burnetii DNA while three pools were positive for C. psittaci or Chlamydophila spp. DNAs. Salmonella spp. was not detected. C. jejuni and C. coli were found in 13% and 4% of the samples, respectively. No Giardia spp. and Cryptosporidium spp. were detected. Thirty-three out of 100 samples (33%) were positive for yeast colonies. The seroprevalence for T. gondii was 8%. Although with moderate incidence, potentially zoonotic agents were present thus highlighting the need for sanitary surveillance on feral pigeon colonies. PMID:27487504

  6. Identification and antimicrobial resistance of microflora colonizing feral pig (Sus scrofa) of Brazilian Pantanal.

    PubMed Central

    Lessa, SS; Paes, RCS; Santoro, PN; Mauro, RA; Vieira-da-Motta, O

    2011-01-01

    Antimicrobial resistance of bacteria is a worldwide problem affecting wild life by living with resistant bacteria in the environment. This study presents a discussion of outside factors environment on microflora of feral pigs (Sus scrofa) from Brazilian Pantanal. Animals had samples collected from six different body sites coming from two separated geographic areas, Nhecolandia and Rio Negro regions. With routine biochemical tests and commercial kits 516 bacteria were identified, with 240 Gram-positive, predominantly staphylococci (36) and enterococci (186) strains. Among Gram-negative (GN) bacteria the predominant specimens of Enterobacteriaceae (247) mainly represented by Serratia spp. (105), Escherichia coli (50), and Enterobacter spp. (40) and specimens not identified (7). Antimicrobial susceptibility was tested against 17 drugs by agar diffusion method. Staphylococci were negative to production of enterotoxins and TSST-1, with all strains sensitive towards four drugs and highest resistance toward ampicillin (17%). Enterococci presented the highest sensitivity against vancomycin (98%), ampicillin (94%) and tetracycline (90%), and highest resistance pattern toward oxacillin (99%), clindamycin (83%), and cotrimoxazole (54%). In GN the highest resistance was observed with Serratia marcescens against CFL (98%), AMC (66%) and AMP (60%) and all drugs was most effective against E. coli SUT, TET (100%), AMP, TOB (98%), GEN, CLO (95%), CFO, CIP (93%). The results show a new profile of oxacillin-resistant enterococci from Brazilian feral pigs and suggest a limited residue and spreading of antimicrobials in the environment, possibly because of low anthropogenic impact reflected by the drug susceptibility profile of bacteria isolated. PMID:24031689

  7. Acquired retinal folds in the cat.

    PubMed

    MacMillan, A D

    1976-06-01

    Retinal folds were found in 5 cats. The apparent cause of the folding was varied: in 1 cat the folds appeared after a localized retinal detachment; in 2 cats the condition accompanied other intraocular abnormalities associated with feline infectious peritonitis; 1 cat had active keratitis, and the retinal changes were thought to have been injury related; and 1 cat, bilaterally affected, had chronic glomerulonephritis. PMID:945253

  8. Primary hypoadrenocorticism in ten cats.

    PubMed

    Peterson, M E; Greco, D S; Orth, D N

    1989-01-01

    Primary hypoadrenocorticism was diagnosed in ten young to middle-aged cats of mixed breeding. Five of the cats were male, and five were female. Historic signs included lethargy (n = 10), anorexia (n = 10), weight loss (n = 9), vomiting (n = 4), and polyuria (n = 3). Dehydration (n = 9), hypothermia (n = 8), prolonged capillary refill time (n = 5), weak pulse (n = 5), collapse (n = 3), and sinus bradycardia (n = 2) were found on physical examination. Results of initial laboratory tests revealed anemia (n = 3), absolute lymphocytosis (n = 2), absolute eosinophilia (n = 1), and azotemia and hyperphosphatemia (n = 10). Serum electrolyte changes included hyponatremia (n = 10), hyperkalemia (n = 9), hypochloremia (n = 9), and hypercalcemia (n = 1). The diagnosis of primary adrenocortical insufficiency was established on the basis of results of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) stimulation tests (n = 10) and endogenous plasma ACTH determinations (n = 7). Initial therapy for hypoadrenocorticism included intravenous administration of 0.9% saline and dexamethasone and intramuscular administration of desoxycorticosterone acetate in oil. Three cats were euthanatized shortly after diagnosis because of poor clinical response. Results of necropsy examination were unremarkable except for complete destruction of both adrenal cortices. Seven cats were treated chronically with oral prednisone or intramuscular methylprednisolone acetate for glucocorticoid supplementation and with oral fludrocortisone acetate or intramuscular injections of repository desoxycorticosterone pivalate for mineralocorticoid replacement. One cat died after 47 days of therapy from unknown causes; the other six cats are still alive and well after 3 to 70 months of treatment. PMID:2469793

  9. Interdependence, Garbage Dumping, and Feral Dogs: Exploring Three Lifeworld Resources of Young Children in a Rural School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Amy Suzanne; Baker, Allison; Bruer, Laura

    2007-01-01

    In this article, we concentrate upon the lifeworld resources that comprise the funds of knowledge for children living in a rural community in the southeastern United States. Through interview conversations with a group of third grade children, we identified three lifeworld resources--interdependence, garbage dumping, and feral dogs--that rural…

  10. Kodamaea ohmeri (Ascomycota: Saccharomycotina) presence in commercial Bombus impatiens Cresson and feral Bombus pensylvanicus DeGeer (Hymenoptera: Apidae) colonies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In this study, eight commercial and three feral bumble bee (Bombus impatiens Cresson and Bombus pensylvanicus DeGeer respectively, Hymenoptera: Apidae) colonies were tested for the presence of Kodamaea ohmeri (Ascomycota: Saccharomycotina), a yeast known to attract small hive beetles (SHB) (Aethina ...

  11. Multi-year effects of feral sorghum spp under ambient and global change conditions in sunlit mesocosms

    EPA Science Inventory

    Background/Questions/Methods Biofuel crops, proposed as a means to reduce dependence on fossil fuels, raise concerns regarding ecological risks of their escape from cultivation. We report here second year results of our study on potential effects of feral biofuel crops on nati...

  12. Effects of feral free-roaming horses on semi-arid rangeland ecosystems: an example from the sagebrush steppe

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feral horses (Equus caballus) are viewed as a symbol of freedom and power; however, they are also a largely unmanaged, non-native grazer in North America, South America, and Australia. Information on their influence on vegetation and soil characteristics in semi-arid rangelands has been limited by ...

  13. Occurrence of transgenic feral alfalfa (Medicago sativa subsp. sativa L.) in alfalfa seed production areas in the United States

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetically-engineered glyphosate-resistant alfalfa (Medicago sativa subsp. sativa) was commercialized in 2011. The potential risk of transgene dispersal into the environment is not clearly understood for alfalfa, a perennial crop that is cross-pollinated by insects. We gathered data on feral and tr...

  14. Cat Ownership Perception and Caretaking Explored in an Internet Survey of People Associated with Cats.

    PubMed

    Zito, Sarah; Vankan, Dianne; Bennett, Pauleen; Paterson, Mandy; Phillips, Clive J C

    2015-01-01

    People who feed cats that they do not perceive they own (sometimes called semi-owners) are thought to make a considerable contribution to unwanted cat numbers because the cats they support are generally not sterilized. Understanding people's perception of cat ownership and the psychology underlying cat semi-ownership could inform approaches to mitigate the negative effects of cat semi-ownership. The primary aims of this study were to investigate cat ownership perception and to examine its association with human-cat interactions and caretaking behaviours. A secondary aim was to evaluate a definition of cat semi-ownership (including an association time of ≥1 month and frequent feeding), revised from a previous definition proposed in the literature to distinguish cat semi-ownership from casual interactions with unowned cats. Cat owners and semi-owners displayed similar types of interactions and caretaking behaviours. Nevertheless, caretaking behaviours were more commonly displayed towards owned cats than semi-owned cats, and semi-owned cats were more likely to have produced kittens (p<0.01). All interactions and caretaking behaviours were more likely to be displayed towards cats in semi-ownership relationships compared to casual interaction relationships. Determinants of cat ownership perception were identified (p<0.05) and included association time, attachment, perceived cat friendliness and health, and feelings about unowned cats, including the acceptability of feeding unowned cats. Encouraging semi-owners to have the cats they care for sterilized may assist in reducing the number of unwanted kittens and could be a valuable alternative to trying to prevent semi-ownership entirely. Highly accessible semi-owner "gatekeepers" could help to deliver education messages and facilitate the provision of cat sterilization services to semi-owners. This research enabled semi-ownership to be distinguished from casual interaction relationships and can assist welfare and

  15. Community Attitudes and Practices of Urban Residents Regarding Predation by Pet Cats on Wildlife: An International Comparison.

    PubMed

    Hall, Catherine M; Adams, Nigel A; Bradley, J Stuart; Bryant, Kate A; Davis, Alisa A; Dickman, Christopher R; Fujita, Tsumugi; Kobayashi, Shinichi; Lepczyk, Christopher A; McBride, E Anne; Pollock, Kenneth H; Styles, Irene M; van Heezik, Yolanda; Wang, Ferian; Calver, Michael C

    2016-01-01

    International differences in practices and attitudes regarding pet cats' interactions with wildlife were assessed by surveying citizens from at least two cities in Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the USA, China and Japan. Predictions tested were: (i) cat owners would agree less than non-cat owners that cats might threaten wildlife, (ii) cat owners value wildlife less than non-cat owners, (iii) cat owners are less accepting of cat legislation/restrictions than non-owners, and (iv) respondents from regions with high endemic biodiversity (Australia, New Zealand, China and the USA state of Hawaii) would be most concerned about pet cats threatening wildlife. Everywhere non-owners were more likely than owners to agree that pet cats killing wildlife were a problem in cities, towns and rural areas. Agreement amongst non-owners was highest in Australia (95%) and New Zealand (78%) and lowest in the UK (38%). Irrespective of ownership, over 85% of respondents from all countries except China (65%) valued wildlife in cities, towns and rural areas. Non-owners advocated cat legislation more strongly than owners except in Japan. Australian non-owners were the most supportive (88%), followed by Chinese non-owners (80%) and Japanese owners (79.5%). The UK was least supportive (non-owners 43%, owners 25%). Many Australian (62%), New Zealand (51%) and Chinese owners (42%) agreed that pet cats killing wildlife in cities, towns and rural areas was a problem, while Hawaiian owners were similar to the mainland USA (20%). Thus high endemic biodiversity might contribute to attitudes in some, but not all, countries. Husbandry practices varied internationally, with predation highest where fewer cats were confined. Although the risk of wildlife population declines caused by pet cats justifies precautionary action, campaigns based on wildlife protection are unlikely to succeed outside Australia or New Zealand. Restrictions on roaming protect wildlife and benefit cat welfare, so welfare is a

  16. Community Attitudes and Practices of Urban Residents Regarding Predation by Pet Cats on Wildlife: An International Comparison

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Nigel A.; Bradley, J. Stuart; Bryant, Kate A.; Davis, Alisa A.; Fujita, Tsumugi; Pollock, Kenneth H.

    2016-01-01

    International differences in practices and attitudes regarding pet cats' interactions with wildlife were assessed by surveying citizens from at least two cities in Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the USA, China and Japan. Predictions tested were: (i) cat owners would agree less than non-cat owners that cats might threaten wildlife, (ii) cat owners value wildlife less than non-cat owners, (iii) cat owners are less accepting of cat legislation/restrictions than non-owners, and (iv) respondents from regions with high endemic biodiversity (Australia, New Zealand, China and the USA state of Hawaii) would be most concerned about pet cats threatening wildlife. Everywhere non-owners were more likely than owners to agree that pet cats killing wildlife were a problem in cities, towns and rural areas. Agreement amongst non-owners was highest in Australia (95%) and New Zealand (78%) and lowest in the UK (38%). Irrespective of ownership, over 85% of respondents from all countries except China (65%) valued wildlife in cities, towns and rural areas. Non-owners advocated cat legislation more strongly than owners except in Japan. Australian non-owners were the most supportive (88%), followed by Chinese non-owners (80%) and Japanese owners (79.5%). The UK was least supportive (non-owners 43%, owners 25%). Many Australian (62%), New Zealand (51%) and Chinese owners (42%) agreed that pet cats killing wildlife in cities, towns and rural areas was a problem, while Hawaiian owners were similar to the mainland USA (20%). Thus high endemic biodiversity might contribute to attitudes in some, but not all, countries. Husbandry practices varied internationally, with predation highest where fewer cats were confined. Although the risk of wildlife population declines caused by pet cats justifies precautionary action, campaigns based on wildlife protection are unlikely to succeed outside Australia or New Zealand. Restrictions on roaming protect wildlife and benefit cat welfare, so welfare is a

  17. The Cat's Eye Nebula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This NASA Hubble Space Telescope image shows one of the most complex planetary nebulae ever seen, NGC 6543, nicknamed the 'Cat's Eye Nebula.' Hubble reveals surprisingly intricate structures including concentric gas shells, jets of high-speed gas and unusual shock-induced knots of gas. Estimated to be 1,000 years old, the nebula is a visual 'fossil record' of the dynamics and late evolution of a dying star. A preliminary interpretation suggests that the star might be a double-star system. The suspected companion star also might be responsible for a pair of high-speed jets of gas that lie at right angles to this equatorial ring. If the companion were pulling in material from a neighboring star, jets escaping along the companion's rotation axis could be produced. These jets would explain several puzzling features along the periphery of the gas lobes. Like a stream of water hitting a sand pile, the jets compress gas ahead of them, creating the 'curlicue' features and bright arcs near the outer edge of the lobes. The twin jets are now pointing in different directions than these features. This suggests the jets are wobbling, or precessing, and turning on and off episodically. This color picture, taken with the Wide Field Planetary Camera-2, is a composite of three images taken at different wavelengths. (red, hydrogen-alpha; blue, neutral oxygen, 6300 angstroms; green, ionized nitrogen, 6584 angstroms). The image was taken on September 18, 1994. NGC 6543 is 3,000 light- years away in the northern constellation Draco. The term planetary nebula is a misnomer; dying stars create these cocoons when they lose outer layers of gas. The process has nothing to do with planet formation, which is predicted to happen early in a star's life.

  18. A critically appraised topic (CAT) to compare the effects of single and multi-cat housing on physiological and behavioural measures of stress in domestic cats in confined environments

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Domestic cats have evolved from solitary, asocial predators and whilst they may display social behaviours, they can still exist as solitary survivors. Over-population and relinquishment of pet cats are ubiquitous problems worldwide, and rehoming centres (also known as rescues/ shelters) aim to ameliorate this by holding cats in confinement for a variable period until a new home is found. The provision of optimal housing for large numbers of cats in close confinement, such as in rehoming centres, is therefore inherently difficult. Under these conditions there is the potential for individuals to develop signs of physical and psychological ill health, and thus experience compromised welfare. Available information regarding housing practices that maximise welfare currently provides conflicting results, and as a consequence there are no unanimous housing recommendations. The aim of this study was therefore to review the evidence on the impact of single housing compared to multi-cat housing on stress in confined cats, as measured by physiological and/or behavioural outcomes. The review was conducted using a Critically Appraised Topic (CAT) format. A systematic search of electronic databases (CAB Abstracts, Zoological Records and Medline) was carried out to identify peer-reviewed literature comparing single and multi-cat housing in confined environments. Results A total of 959 papers were initially identified, six of which met sufficient criteria based on their relevance to be included within this review. All of the studies had significant limitations in design and methodology, including a lack of information on how groups were assigned, inconsistent handling and enrichment provision between groups, and lack of information on the socialisation status of cats. Conclusions Whilst some studies suggested that single housing may be less stressful for cats, others suggested group housing was less stressful. Several other important factors were however identified as

  19. Ultrasonographic characteristics of lipiduria in clinically normal cats.

    PubMed

    Sislak, Meg D; Spaulding, Kathy A; Zoran, Debra L; Bauer, John E; Thompson, James A

    2014-01-01

    Echoes are frequently seen in the urinary bladder of cats during abdominal ultrasound. These have been attributed to hematuria, pyuria, crystalluria, and lipid. However, sonographic findings have not been previously correlated with urinalysis. We prospectively evaluated 40 clinically normal cats via ultrasound, serum chemistry, and urinalysis. Thin layer chromatography was performed on the urine to determine the amount (mg) of lipid subfractions including diacylglycerol, triglyceride, phospholipid, free fatty acid, cholesterol, and cholesterol ester. Ninety percent (36/40) of the cats in our population had sonographic echoes suspended in the urinary bladder, with most having a subjective score of mild echoes (n = 20). None of the sonographic echoes were gravity dependent or caused distal acoustic shadowing, reverberation, or twinkle artifact. Of the cats with sonographic echoes in the urine, 66% (24/36) had no significant findings on urinalysis other than the presence of lipid. The total amount of subjective sonographic echoes was not significantly related to the total amount of fat measured on thin layer chromatography or the number of lipid droplets seen on urinalysis. An increased amount of urine diacylglycerol was significantly associated with clumping of echoes (P = 0.02) and the amount of lipid droplets seen on urinalysis (P = 0.04). An association between increased amounts of urine diacylglycerol and the amount of echoes seen on ultrasound approached significance (P = 0.05). Findings from this study support previously published theories that sonographic echoes within the urinary bladder of clinically normal cats may be due to urine lipid. PMID:24102935

  20. Genetic testing in domestic cats

    PubMed Central

    Lyons, Leslie A.

    2012-01-01

    Varieties of genetic tests are currently available for the domestic cat that support veterinary health care, breed management, species identification, and forensic investigations. Approximately thirty-five genes contain over fifty mutations that cause feline health problems or alterations in the cat’s appearance. Specific genes, such as sweet and drug receptors, have been knocked-out of Felidae during evolution and can be used along with mtDNA markers for species identification. Both STR and SNP panels differentiate cat race, breed, and individual identity, as well as gender-specific markers to determine sex of an individual. Cat genetic tests are common offerings for commercial laboratories, allowing both the veterinary clinician and the private owner to obtain DNA test results. This article will review the genetic tests for the domestic cat, and their various applications in different fields of science. Highlighted are genetic tests specific to the individual cat, which are a part of the cat’s genome. PMID:22546621

  1. Isolation and characterization of a herpesvirus from feral pigeons in China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Panpan; Ma, Jian; Guo, Ying; Tian, Li; Guo, Guangyang; Zhang, Kexin; Xing, Mingwei

    2015-12-01

    A herpesvirus was isolated during a diagnostic investigation of severe cases of conjunctivitis in feral pigeons (Columba livia f. domestica). Isolates of the virus were recovered from throat swabs of the pigeons followed by inoculation of the swab samples in chicken embryo fibroblasts. Pigeons inoculated with the isolated virus had similar clinical signs to those observed in naturally infected birds. Transmission electron microscopy revealed viral structures with typical herpesvirus morphology. Polymerase chain reaction amplification, using herpesvirus-identifying primers resulted in an amplicon of the expected size for herpesvirus. Sequencing of these amplicons and database comparisons identified the herpesvirus UL30 homologue. Phylogenetic reconstructions suggested that the isolated herpesvirus belongs to the Mardivirus genus of Alphaherpesvirinae. Using the current herpesvirus nomenclature conventions, the authors propose that the herpesvirus be named Columbid herpesvirus-1 Heilongjiang. PMID:26542366

  2. Spatial Stream Segregation by Cats.

    PubMed

    Javier, Lauren K; McGuire, Elizabeth A; Middlebrooks, John C

    2016-06-01

    Listeners can perceive interleaved sequences of sounds from two or more sources as segregated streams. In humans, physical separation of sound sources is a major factor enabling such stream segregation. Here, we examine spatial stream segregation with a psychophysical measure in domestic cats. Cats depressed a pedal to initiate a target sequence of brief sound bursts in a particular rhythm and then released the pedal when the rhythm changed. The target bursts were interleaved with a competing sequence of bursts that could differ in source location but otherwise were identical to the target bursts. This task was possible only when the sources were heard as segregated streams. When the sound bursts had broad spectra, cats could detect the rhythm change when target and competing sources were separated by as little as 9.4°. Essentially equal levels of performance were observed when frequencies were restricted to a high, 4-to-25-kHz, band in which the principal spatial cues presumably were related to sound levels. When the stimulus band was restricted from 0.4 to 1.6 kHz, leaving interaural time differences as the principal spatial cue, performance was severely degraded. The frequency sensitivity of cats in this task contrasts with that of humans, who show better spatial stream segregation with low- than with high-frequency sounds. Possible explanations for the species difference includes the smaller interaural delays available to cats due to smaller sizes of their heads and the potentially greater sound-level cues available due to the cat's frontally directed pinnae and higher audible frequency range. PMID:26993807

  3. Radiographic measurements of the trachea in domestic shorthair and Persian cats.

    PubMed

    Hammond, Gawain; Geary, Mary; Coleman, Erica; Gunn-Moore, Danièlle

    2011-12-01

    Tracheal diameter can be assessed from a thoracic radiograph, with assessment of tracheal diameter in dogs based on ratios between tracheal diameter and a skeletal measurement. Reference intervals are not, however, available for the cat. Tracheal narrowing may cause significant clinical problems, although tracheal hypoplasia in dogs may be clinically silent, and is rarely reported in cats (both mesati- and brachycephalic). The tracheal diameter and trachea:thoracic inlet and trachea:rib ratios were calculated for populations of domestic shorthair (DSH) (n = 68) and Persian (n = 40) cats. This gave reference intervals for radiographic tracheal measurements in these breeds. It is proposed that the tracheal diameter in a normal DSH cat should be 18% of the diameter of the thoracic inlet, and compared to 20% in Persian cats. PMID:22100014

  4. The paradox of Schrodinger's cat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villars, C. N.

    1986-07-01

    Erwin Schrodinger first described the thought-experiment which has since become known as 'the paradox of Schrodinger's cat' 51 years ago. In recent years, popular accounts of quantum mechanics have tended to adopt one or other of the philosophically most extreme solutions to this paradox, i.e. the consciousness hypothesis or the many worlds interpretation. The author attempts to redress the balance by describing what he takes to be the orthodox solution to the paradox which explains the paradox, without recourse to such counterintuitive notions as a cat simultaneously dead and alive or a universe continually splitting into multiple worlds, as being due to a misapplication of the quantum formalism.

  5. Unusual hyperparathyroidism in a cat.

    PubMed

    Gnudi, G; Bertoni, G; Luppi, A; Cantoni, A M

    2001-01-01

    A 5 month-old, male, domestic short hair cat was presented with inappetence and vomiting. it was depressed and reluctant to move. The cat had difficulties in keeping the standing position and grossly deformed thighs. Lytic changes and disruption of normal architecture of the bone were observed, involving mainly the femoral diaphyses. An inverse Ca/P ratio and kidney failure were diagnosed. The possibility of whether the bone changes could have been related to primary or secondary renal hyperparathyroidism is discussed. PMID:11405269

  6. Disease dynamics and persistence of Musca domestica salivary gland hypertropy virus infections in laboratory house fly (Musca domestica) populations.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Past surveys of feral house fly populations have shown that Musca domestica salivary gland hypertrophy virus (MdSGHV) has a world-wide distribution with an average prevalence varying between 0.5% and 10%. How this adult-specific virus persists in nature is unknown. In the present study, experiments ...

  7. Changes in the axonal conduction velocity of pyramidal tract neurons in the aged cat.

    PubMed

    Xi, M C; Liu, R H; Engelhardt, J K; Morales, F R; Chase, M H

    1999-01-01

    The present study was undertaken to determine whether age-dependent changes in axonal conduction velocity occur in pyramidal tract neurons. A total of 260 and 254 pyramidal tract neurons were recorded extracellularly in the motor cortex of adult control and aged cats, respectively. These cells were activated antidromically by electrical stimulation of the medullary pyramidal tract. Fast- and slow-conducting neurons were identified according to their axonal conduction velocity in both control and aged cats. While 51% of pyramidal tract neurons recorded in the control cats were fast conducting (conduction velocity greater than 20 m/s), only 26% of pyramidal tract neurons in the aged cats were fast conducting. There was a 43% decrease in the median conduction velocity for the entire population of pyramidal tract neurons in aged cats when compared with that of pyramidal tract neurons in the control cats (P < 0.001, Mann-Whitney U-test). A linear relationship between the spike duration of pyramidal tract neurons and their antidromic latency was present in both control and aged cats. However, the regression slope was significantly reduced in aged cats. This reduction was due to the appearance of a group of pyramidal tract neurons with relatively shorter spike durations but slower axonal conduction velocities in the aged cat. Sample intracellular data confirmed the above results. These observations form the basis for the following conclusions: (i) there is a decrease in median conduction velocity of pyramidal tract neurons in aged cats; (ii) the reduction in the axonal conduction velocity of pyramidal tract neurons in aged cats is due, in part, to fibers that previously belonged to the fast-conducting group and now conduct at slower velocity. PMID:10392844

  8. Urban stray cats infested by ectoparasites with zoonotic potential in Greece.

    PubMed

    Lefkaditis, Menelaos A; Sossidou, Anna V; Panorias, Alexandros H; Koukeri, Smaragda E; Paştiu, Anamaria I; Athanasiou, Labrini V

    2015-10-01

    A large population of stray cats is encountered in many urban areas sharing the same environment with people, usually being in a close direct contact with them. A variety of ectoparasites can infest such cats, causing mild dermatological abnormalities to more severe systemic disorders. In order to determine the extent of which stray cats carry ectoparasites, particularly those of zoonotic potential, 341 stray cats originating from the urban area of Thessaloniki, Greece, were examined between 2012 and 2014. The signalment of each cat such as gender, hair length, and roughly estimated age were recorded. From a total of 341 examined stray cats, 127 (37.24%; 95% confidence interval (CI) 32.14-42.64) were infested with at least one of the following ectoparasites: mites-Otodectes cynotis (15.8%), Notoedres cati (2.35%), Cheyletiella blakei (2.05%); fleas-Ctenocephalides felis (24.3%); ticks-Rhipicephalus sanguineus (0.88%); and lice-Felicola subrostratus (0.59%). A significantly higher prevalence of ectoparasites was observed in long-haired individuals (p < 0.00001). The above ectoparasites may either cause or transmit diseases not only in cats but also in humans Therefore, antiparasitic control should be included in stray cat neutering campaigns while public health education for taking preventive measures will decrease the risk of transmission to humans. PMID:26319525

  9. Toxoplasmosis: An Important Message for Cat Owners

    MedlinePlus

    ... a s t is O : wAnneIrmsportant What role do cats play in the spread of toxoplasmosis? Cats get Toxoplasma infection by eating infected rodents, birds ... animals, or anything contaminated with feces from another cat that is shedding the microscopic parasite in its ...

  10. Dipylidium (Dog and Cat Flea Tapeworm) FAQs

    MedlinePlus

    ... the most common kind of tapeworm dogs and cats get? The most common tapeworm of dogs and cats in the United States is called Dipylidium caninum . ... infected with a tapeworm larvae. A dog or cat may swallow a flea while self-grooming. Once ...

  11. Health and Behavioral Survey of over 8000 Finnish Cats

    PubMed Central

    Vapalahti, Katariina; Virtala, Anna-Maija; Joensuu, Tara A.; Tiira, Katriina; Tähtinen, Jaana; Lohi, Hannes

    2016-01-01

    A comprehensive feline health survey was conducted to reveal breed-specific inheritable diseases in Finnish pedigree cats for genetic research. Prevalence of 19 disease categories and 227 feline diseases were defined in a study population of 8175 cats belonging to 30 breeds. Dental and oral diseases, with a prevalence of 28%, and dental calculus and gingivitis (21 and 8%, respectively) were the most prevalent disease category and diseases among all cats and in most of the breeds. An exception was Korats, which were more often affected by the diseases of the respiratory tract (23%) and asthma (19%). Other prevalent disease categories affected various organ systems, such as the skin (12%), the urinary system (12%), the digestive tract (11%), eyes (10%), the musculoskeletal system (10%), and genitals of female cats (17%). Prevalent health or developmental issues included repetitive vomiting (4%), tail kink (4%), feline odontoclastic resorption lesion (4%), urinary tract infections (4%), as well as cesarean section (6%) and stillborn kittens (6%) among female cats. We found 57 breed-specific conditions by Fisher’s exact tests and logistic regression analyses, including 32 previously described and 19 new breed-specific diseases. The genetic defect has already been found in six of them: polycystic kidney disease, progressive retinal atrophy, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and three types of tail malformations. Behavioral profiling revealed breed-specific traits, such as an increased human avoidance in British Short and Longhairs and a higher level of aggression in Turkish vans. Our epidemiological study reveals the overall health profile in Finnish pure and mixed breed cats and identifies many breed-specific conditions without molecular identity for genetic research. PMID:27622188

  12. Health and Behavioral Survey of over 8000 Finnish Cats.

    PubMed

    Vapalahti, Katariina; Virtala, Anna-Maija; Joensuu, Tara A; Tiira, Katriina; Tähtinen, Jaana; Lohi, Hannes

    2016-01-01

    A comprehensive feline health survey was conducted to reveal breed-specific inheritable diseases in Finnish pedigree cats for genetic research. Prevalence of 19 disease categories and 227 feline diseases were defined in a study population of 8175 cats belonging to 30 breeds. Dental and oral diseases, with a prevalence of 28%, and dental calculus and gingivitis (21 and 8%, respectively) were the most prevalent disease category and diseases among all cats and in most of the breeds. An exception was Korats, which were more often affected by the diseases of the respiratory tract (23%) and asthma (19%). Other prevalent disease categories affected various organ systems, such as the skin (12%), the urinary system (12%), the digestive tract (11%), eyes (10%), the musculoskeletal system (10%), and genitals of female cats (17%). Prevalent health or developmental issues included repetitive vomiting (4%), tail kink (4%), feline odontoclastic resorption lesion (4%), urinary tract infections (4%), as well as cesarean section (6%) and stillborn kittens (6%) among female cats. We found 57 breed-specific conditions by Fisher's exact tests and logistic regression analyses, including 32 previously described and 19 new breed-specific diseases. The genetic defect has already been found in six of them: polycystic kidney disease, progressive retinal atrophy, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and three types of tail malformations. Behavioral profiling revealed breed-specific traits, such as an increased human avoidance in British Short and Longhairs and a higher level of aggression in Turkish vans. Our epidemiological study reveals the overall health profile in Finnish pure and mixed breed cats and identifies many breed-specific conditions without molecular identity for genetic research. PMID:27622188

  13. A strange cat in Dublin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Raifeartaigh, Cormac

    2012-11-01

    Not many life stories in physics involve Nazis, illicit sex, a strange cat and the genetic code. Thus, a new biography of the great Austrian physicist Erwin Schrödinger is always of interest, and with Erwin Schrödinger and the Quantum Revolution, veteran science writer John Gribbin does not disappoint.

  14. Lessons from the Cheshire Cat

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tinberg, Donna

    2012-01-01

    "If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there." This oft-cited but not-quite-accurate quote is from the Lewis Carroll's classic children's tale, Alice in Wonderland. In Carroll's altered reality, the conversation between the disoriented Alice and the mysterious Cheshire Cat actually went like this: "Would you tell me, please,…

  15. Chyloabdomen in a mature cat.

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, K L

    2001-01-01

    A mature, castrated male cat presented with progressive lethargy and a severely distended abdomen. Abdominal radiographs, abdominocentesis, and evaluation of the fluid obtained led to a diagnosis of chyloabdomen. The underlying pathology, etiology, diagnosis, and treatment associated with this disease are discussed. PMID:11360862

  16. Assessing CAT Test Security Severity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yi, Qing; Zhang, Jinming; Chang, Hua-Hua

    2006-01-01

    In addition to its precision superiority over nonadaptive tests, another known advantage of computerized adaptive tests (CATs) is that they can be offered on a continuous basis. This is advantageous to examinees in terms of flexibility of test scheduling, as well as advantageous to schools and other testing centers in terms of both space and…

  17. CATS Data and Information Page

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2015-10-05

    ... of atmospheric aerosols and clouds from the International Space Station (ISS).   CATS will provide vertical profiles at three ... with nearly a three-day repeat cycle.  For the first time, it will allow scientist to study diurnal (day-to-night) changes in cloud ...

  18. A CAT scan for cells

    SciTech Connect

    2009-01-01

    Recently, a team of scientists from Berkeley Lab, Stanford University, and the University of California, San Francisco used Berkeley Lab's National Center for X-ray Tomography to capture the changes that occur when Candida albicans is exposed to a new and promising antifungal therapy. http://newscenter.lbl.gov/feature-stories/2009/12/10/cat-scan-cells/

  19. Antimicrobial resistance and virulence gene profiles in P. multocida strains isolated from cats

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Thais Sebastiana Porfida; Felizardo, Maria Roberta; de Gobbi, Debora Dirani Sena; Moreno, Marina; Moreno, Andrea Micke

    2015-01-01

    Cats are often described as carriers of Pasteurella multocida in their oral microbiota. This agent is thought to cause pneumonia, conjunctivitis, rhinitis, gingivostomatitis, abscess and osteonecrosis in cats. Human infection with P. multocida has been described in several cases affecting cat owners or after cat bites. In Brazil, the cat population is approximately 21 million animals and is increasing, but there are no studies of the presence of P. multocida in the feline population or of human cases of infection associated with cats. In this study, one hundred and ninety-one healthy cats from owners and shelters in São Paulo State, Brazil, were evaluated for the presence of P. multocida in their oral cavities. Twenty animals were positive for P. multocida , and forty-one strains were selected and characterized by means of biochemical tests and PCR. The P. multocida strains were tested for capsular type, virulence genes and resistance profile. A total of 75.6% (31/41) of isolates belonged to capsular type A, and 24.4% (10/41) of the isolates were untypeable. None of the strains harboured toxA, tbpA or pfhA genes. The frequencies of the other genes tested were variable, and the data generated were used to build a dendrogram showing the relatedness of strains, which were clustered according to origin. The most common resistance profile observed was against sulfizoxazole and trimethoprim-sulphamethoxazole. PMID:26221117

  20. The implications for paleodietary and paleoclimatic reconstructions of intrapopulation variability in the oxygen and carbon isotopes of teeth from modern feral horses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoppe, Kathryn A.; Stuska, Sue; Amundson, Ronald

    2005-09-01

    We analyzed the isotopic patterns found in the tooth enamel of modern feral horses from Shackleford Banks, North Carolina (USA), which has a temperate climate and supports primarily C 4 grasslands. Enamel δ13C values averaged -4.1‰ with a standard deviation (1σ) of 1.7‰, which corresponds to an average diet of 66 ± 12% C 4 plants. Our results differ from dietary reconstructions from 1978 to 1981, which found that horses consumed 91% C 4 plants. This suggests that horses have increased their consumption of C 3 forbs, likely as a result of the removal of cattle, sheep, and goats from the island. Shackleford surface waters had δ18O values that averaged -3.3 ± 0.5‰ and -1.3 ± 1.8‰ on the western and eastern ends of the island, respectively. Tooth enamel samples averaged 27.3 ± 1.5‰ and displayed the same range of δ18O values as surface waters. The variability of both δ18O and the δ13C values among individuals within this population demonstrates that horses from relatively homogenous temperate environments can display a wide range of isotopic values. Given the observed range of isotopic values for modern horses, we suggest that researchers use the mean values of multiple (≥9) equids when attempting to reconstruct average paleodiets and/or paleoenvironmental conditions.

  1. Abundance, distribution, and removals of feral pigs at Big Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex 2010–2015

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leopold, Christina R.; Hess, Steve; Kendall, Steve J.; Judge, Seth W.

    2016-01-01

    The Hakalau Forest Unit (HFU) of Big Island National Wildlife Refuge Complex (BINWRC) has intensively monitored non-native ungulate presence and distribution during surveys of all managed areas since 1988. In this report we: 1) provide results from recent ungulate surveys and the number of removals at HFU to determine the distribution, abundance, and efficacy of removals of feral pigs, the dominant ungulate, from 2010 to 2015; 2) present results of surveys of the presence and distribution of several ungulate species at the Kona Forest Unit (KFU) of BINWRC from November of 2012 to April of 2015; 3) present results of surveys of weed presence and cover at both refuge units; and 4) present comparative analyses of forest canopy cover at KFU from visual estimates and geospatial imagery. Removals of feral pigs at HFU appear to have significantly decreased pig abundance over the study period from 2010–2015. A grand total of 1,660 feral pigs were removed from managed areas of HFU from 2010 until September of 2015. Management units 2 and 4 contained the majority of pigs at HFU. Recent surveys recorded high densities of pigs in the unenclosed, unmanaged area of Lower Maulua, reaching 14.9 ± (3.2) pigs/km2 in March of 2015. The total amount of ungulate sign ranged from 22.2 to 54.3 percent of plots surveyed at KFU from November of 2012 to April of 2015. The ability to differentiate sign of ungulate species remains problematic at KFU; although there appears to have been a significant decline in feral cattle sign at KFU, this result is likely to be unreliable because cattle and pig sign were not differentiated consistently during later surveys. Spatial distributions in weed cover are distinctive; however, some weed species may not be reliably represented due to observers’ inconsistencies in recording data and abilities to recognize less common weeds.

  2. Parallel Climate Analysis Toolkit (ParCAT)

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2013-06-30

    The parallel analysis toolkit (ParCAT) provides parallel statistical processing of large climate model simulation datasets. ParCAT provides parallel point-wise average calculations, frequency distributions, sum/differences of two datasets, and difference-of-average and average-of-difference for two datasets for arbitrary subsets of simulation time. ParCAT is a command-line utility that can be easily integrated in scripts or embedded in other application. ParCAT supports CMIP5 post-processed datasets as well as non-CMIP5 post-processed datasets. ParCAT reads and writes standard netCDF files.

  3. Molecular detection of spotted fever group rickettsia in feral raccoons (Procyon lotor) in the western part of Japan.

    PubMed

    Baba, Kenji; Kaneda, Toshiya; Nishimura, Hitoshi; Sato, Hiroshi

    2013-02-01

    Rickettsial infection in feral raccoons (Procyon lotor) in the western part of Japan (Shimane, Fukuoka, Saga and Nagasaki Prefectures) was surveyed by a nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay detecting the rickettsial citrate synthase (gltA) gene. Four of one hundred and ninety-four feral raccoon spleens (2.1%) were positive for Rickettsia spp. One gltA gene sequence was identical to R. helvetica, whereas the other 3 sequences were identical and had the highest similarity (98.4%) to R. amblyommii. Simultaneously, we determined a partial sequence of the rickettsial 17-kilodalton (17K) genus-common antigen gene in the later 3 raccoon samples. Their sequences were identical and had the highest similarity (98.5%) to Rickettsia sp. Hj126. Based on the sequences of gltA and 17K antigen genes, these raccoons might be infected with spotted fever group (SFG) rickettsia most closely related to R. amblyommii and/or Rickettsia sp. Hj126. Feral raccoons may be a susceptible reservoir for SFG rickettsiae in Japan. PMID:22986299

  4. Cross-cultural management of pest animal damage: a case study of feral buffalo control in Australia's Kakadu National Park.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Cathy J; Whitehead, Peter

    2003-10-01

    Government agencies responsible for pest animal management often assume that their views and assumptions about the benefits of control are widely shared, especially if these pests are exotics. This was certainly the case when tens of thousands of feral Asian water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) were to be culled in Australia's Kakadu National Park as part of a national Brucellosis and Tuberculosis Eradication Campaign (BTEC). Implementation of the campaign sparked considerable dispute between officials and aboriginal and non-aboriginal interests about the risks posed by buffalo relative to their value as a potential resource. Drawing upon a variety of written and oral sources relating to the era of buffalo control in Kakadu, this paper critically analyzes the way in which detriment caused by buffalo was appraised and managed under the BTEC program. In particular, the paper focuses the ways in which the BTEC program affected aboriginal people in Kakadu, who view buffalo as a source of customary and economic benefit as well as a source of change on their lands. The paper then considers what lessons can be learned from the BTEC for the development of sensible feral management objectives and strategies. It is argued that effective management of feral animals such as buffalo will require environmental managers to engage with local people and involve them in the definition and management of pest animal damage and methods of control. PMID:14986894

  5. Evaluation of the electroencephalogram in young cats

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Melissa J.; Williams, D. Colette; Vite, Charles H.

    2013-01-01

    Objective To characterize the electroencephalogram (EEG) in young cats. Animals 23 clinically normal cats. Procedures Cats were sedated with medetomidine hydrochloride and butorphanol tartrate at 2, 4, 6, 8, 12, 16, 20, and 24 weeks of age and an EEG was recorded. Recordings were visually inspected for electrical continuity, interhemispheric synchrony, amplitude and frequency of background electrical activity, and frequency of transient activity. Computer-aided analysis was used to perform frequency spectral analysis and to calculate absolute and relative power of the background activity at each age. Results Electrical continuity was evident in cats ≥ 4 weeks old, and interhemispheric synchrony was evident in cats at all ages evaluated. Analysis of amplitude of background activity and absolute power revealed significant elevations in 6-week-old cats, compared with results for 2-, 20-, and 24-week-old cats. No association between age and relative power or frequency was identified. Transient activity, consisting of sleep spindles and K complexes, was evident at all ages, but spike and spike or wave discharges were observed in cats at 2 weeks of age. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance Medetomidine and butorphanol were administered in accordance with a sedation protocol that allowed investigators to repeatedly obtain EEG data from cats. Age was an important consideration when interpreting EEG data. These data on EEG development in clinically normal cats may be used for comparison in future studies conducted to examine EEGs in young cats with diseases that affect the cerebral cortex. PMID:21355743

  6. Effects of Long-Term Exposure to an Electronic Containment System on the Behaviour and Welfare of Domestic Cats.

    PubMed

    Kasbaoui, Naïma; Cooper, Jonathan; Mills, Daniel S; Burman, Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Free-roaming cats are exposed to a variety of risks, including involvement in road traffic accidents. One way of mitigating these risks is to contain cats, for example using an electronic boundary fence system that delivers an electric 'correction' via a collar if a cat ignores a warning cue and attempts to cross the boundary. However, concerns have been expressed over the welfare impact of such systems. Our aim was to determine if long-term exposure to an electronic containment system was associated with reduced cat welfare. We compared 46 owned domestic cats: 23 cats that had been contained by an electronic containment system for more than 12 months (AF group); and 23 cats with no containment system that were able to roam more widely (C group). We assessed the cats' behavioural responses and welfare via four behavioural tests (unfamiliar person test; novel object test; sudden noise test; cognitive bias test) and an owner questionnaire. In the unfamiliar person test, C group lip-licked more than the AF group, whilst the AF group looked at, explored and interacted more with the unfamiliar person than C group. In the novel object test, the AF group looked at and explored the object more than C group. No significant differences were found between AF and C groups for the sudden noise or cognitive bias tests. Regarding the questionnaire, C group owners thought their cats showed more irritable behaviour and AF owners thought that their cats toileted inappropriately more often than C owners. Overall, AF cats were less neophobic than C cats and there was no evidence of significant differences between the populations in general affective state. These findings indicate that an electronic boundary fence with clear pre-warning cues does not impair the long term quality of life of cats. PMID:27602572

  7. Intervertebral disc extrusion in six cats.

    PubMed

    Knipe, M F; Vernau, K M; Hornof, W J; LeCouteur, R A

    2001-09-01

    Existing reports concerning intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) have focused almost exclusively on dogs, although a small number of individual case reports of IVDD of cats has been published. The medical records of six cats with IVDD were reviewed. Radiographic studies confirmed narrowed intervertebral disc spaces, mineralised intervertebral discs, and one or more extradural compressive lesions of the spinal cord in each cat. All disc extrusions were located in the thoracolumbar region. Surgical decompression of the spinal cord was achieved in all cats by means of hemilaminectomy and removal of compressive extradural material confirmed to be degenerative disc material. Good to excellent neurological recovery was noted in five of the six cats included in this report. Based on this review, it appears that IVDD of cats has many similarities to IVDD of dogs, and that healthy cats with acute intervertebral disc extrusion(s) respond favourably to surgical decompression of the spinal cord. PMID:11876633

  8. Body composition and amino acid concentrations of select birds and mammals consumed by cats in northern and central California.

    PubMed

    Kremen, N A; Calvert, C C; Larsen, J A; Baldwin, R A; Hahn, T P; Fascetti, A J

    2013-03-01

    The diet of the feral domestic cat consists of primarily birds and small mammals, but the nutritional composition is relatively unknown. Because of the increasing popularity of natural diets for cats and other wild captive carnivores, the purpose of this study was to describe the body composition and AA concentrations of select birds and small mammals in northern and central California: wild-caught mice (n = 7), Norway rats (n = 2), roof rats (n = 2), voles (n = 4), moles (n = 2), gophers (n = 3), and birds (n = 4). Body water, crude fat (CFa), CP, ash, and AA composition for each specimen were determined. Results are reported as mean ± SD. All results are reported on a DM basis except body water (as-is basis) and AA (g/16 g N). Combined, carcasses had this mean composition: 67.35 ± 3.19% water, 11.72 ± 6.17% CFa, 62.19 ± 7.28% CP, and 14.83 ± 2.66% ash. Concentrations of Arg, Tau, Cys, and Met were 5.63 ± 0.46, 0.92 ± 0.33, 1.91 ± 0.89, and 1.82 ± 0.19 g/16 g N, respectively. Using NRC physiologic fuel values for CP, CFa, and carbohydrate by difference, the combined average energy content of the carcasses was 3,929 kcal/kg DM, but the fiber content was not determined. With the exception of mice and rats, little historical data exist regarding the body and AA composition of many of the species analyzed in this study. Wild-caught mice and rats were composed of less fat but more ash compared with previously reported data in their purpose-bred counterparts. The CP content of mice in this study was similar to previous reports in purpose-bred mice. The CP content of rats was similar or slightly greater compared with historical findings in purpose-bred rats. The N content of rats and AA concentrations on a per-N basis for both rats and mice were similar to previously published data on purpose-bred rodents. The discrepancies in nutrient composition, especially fat concentration, indicate that using purpose-bred animals to represent the diet of the feral domestic

  9. The Fecal Microbiome in Cats with Diarrhea

    PubMed Central

    Suchodolski, Jan S.; Foster, Mary L.; Sohail, Muhammad U.; Leutenegger, Christian; Queen, Erica V.; Steiner, Jörg M.; Marks, Stanley L.

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies have revealed that microbes play an important role in the pathogenesis of gastrointestinal (GI) diseases in various animal species, but only limited data is available about the microbiome in cats with GI disease. The aim of this study was to evaluate the fecal microbiome in cats with diarrhea. Fecal samples were obtained from healthy cats (n = 21) and cats with acute (n = 19) or chronic diarrhea (n = 29) and analyzed by sequencing of 16S rRNA genes, and PICRUSt was used to predict the functional gene content of the microbiome. Linear discriminant analysis (LDA) effect size (LEfSe) revealed significant differences in bacterial groups between healthy cats and cats with diarrhea. The order Burkholderiales, the families Enterobacteriaceae, and the genera Streptococcus and Collinsella were significantly increased in diarrheic cats. In contrast the order Campylobacterales, the family Bacteroidaceae, and the genera Megamonas, Helicobacter, and Roseburia were significantly increased in healthy cats. Phylum Bacteroidetes was significantly decreased in cats with chronic diarrhea (>21 days duration), while the class Erysipelotrichi and the genus Lactobacillus were significantly decreased in cats with acute diarrhea. The observed changes in bacterial groups were accompanied by significant differences in functional gene contents: metabolism of fatty acids, biosynthesis of glycosphingolipids, metabolism of biotin, metabolism of tryptophan, and ascorbate and aldarate metabolism, were all significantly (p<0.001) altered in cats with diarrhea. In conclusion, significant differences in the fecal microbiomes between healthy cats and cats with diarrhea were identified. This dysbiosis was accompanied by changes in bacterial functional gene categories. Future studies are warranted to evaluate if these microbial changes correlate with changes in fecal concentrations of microbial metabolites in cats with diarrhea for the identification of potential diagnostic or therapeutic

  10. Gastrointestinal parasites of cats in Brazil: frequency and zoonotic risk.

    PubMed

    Monteiro, Maria Fernanda Melo; Ramos, Rafael Antonio Nascimento; Calado, Andréa Maria Campos; Lima, Victor Fernando Santana; Ramos, Ingrid Carla do Nascimento; Tenório, Rodrigo Ferreira Lima; Faustino, Maria Aparecida da Glória; Alves, Leucio Câmara

    2016-04-12

    Gastrointestinal helminths are considered to be the most common parasites affecting cats worldwide. Correct diagnosis of these parasites in animals living in urban areas is pivotal, especially considering the zoonotic potential of some species (e.g. Ancylostoma sp. and Toxocara sp.). In this study, a copromicroscopic survey was conducted using fecal samples (n = 173) from domestic cats living in the northeastern region of Brazil. Samples were examined through the FLOTAC technique and the overall results showed positivity of 65.31% (113/173) among the samples analyzed. Coinfections were observed in 46.01% (52/113) of the positive samples. The most common parasites detected were Ancylostoma sp., Toxocara cati, Strongyloides stercoralis, Trichuris sp., Dipylidium caninum and Cystoisospora sp. From an epidemiological point of view, these findings are important, especially considering that zoonotic parasites (e.g. Ancylostoma sp. and Toxocara sp.) were the nematodes most frequently diagnosed in this study. Therefore, the human population living in close contact with cats is at risk of infection caused by the zoonotic helminths of these animals. In addition, for the first time the FLOTAC has been used to diagnosing gastrointestinal parasites of cats in Brazil. PMID:27096530

  11. Spatio-Temporal Variation in Predation by Urban Domestic Cats (Felis catus) and the Acceptability of Possible Management Actions in the UK

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Rebecca L.; Fellowes, Mark D. E.; Baker, Philip J.

    2012-01-01

    Urban domestic cat (Felis catus) populations can attain exceedingly high densities and are not limited by natural prey availability. This has generated concerns that they may negatively affect prey populations, leading to calls for management. We enlisted cat-owners to record prey returned home to estimate patterns of predation by free-roaming pets in different localities within the town of Reading, UK and questionnaire surveys were used to quantify attitudes to different possible management strategies. Prey return rates were highly variable: only 20% of cats returned ≥4 dead prey annually. Consequently, approximately 65% of owners received no prey in a given season, but this declined to 22% after eight seasons. The estimated mean predation rate was 18.3 prey cat−1 year−1 but this varied markedly both spatially and temporally: per capita predation rates declined with increasing cat density. Comparisons with estimates of the density of six common bird prey species indicated that cats killed numbers equivalent to adult density on c. 39% of occasions. Population modeling studies suggest that such predation rates could significantly reduce the size of local bird populations for common urban species. Conversely, most urban residents did not consider cat predation to be a significant problem. Collar-mounted anti-predation devices were the only management action acceptable to the majority of urban residents (65%), but were less acceptable to cat-owners because of perceived risks to their pets; only 24% of cats were fitted with such devices. Overall, cat predation did appear to be of sufficient magnitude to affect some prey populations, although further investigation of some key aspects of cat predation is warranted. Management of the predation behavior of urban cat populations in the UK is likely to be challenging and achieving this would require considerable engagement with cat owners. PMID:23173057

  12. Is There a Threshold Concentration of Cat Allergen Exposure on Respiratory Symptoms in Adults?

    PubMed Central

    Zock, Jan-Paul; Villani, Simona; Olivieri, Mario; Modig, Lars; Jarvis, Deborah; Norbäck, Dan; Verlato, Giuseppe; Heinrich, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    Background and Objective Cat allergen concentrations higher than 8 μg/g in settled house dust, have been suggested to provoke exacerbation of allergic respiratory symptoms. However, whether the 8μg/g of indoor cat allergen concentration is indeed the minimal exposure required for triggering the asthma related respiratory symptoms or the development of sensitization has not yet been confirmed. We studied the associations between domestic cat allergen concentrations and allergic symptoms in the European Community Respiratory Health Survey II, with the aim of confirming this suggested threshold. Methods Cat allergen concentrations were measured in the mattress dust of 3003 participants from 22 study centres. Levels of specific immunoglobulin E to cat allergens were measured in serum samples using an immunoassay. Information on allergic symptoms, medication use, home environment and smoking was obtained from a face-to-face interview. Results Domestic cat allergen concentrations were not associated with allergic/ asthmatic symptoms in the entire study population, nor in the subset sensitized to cat allergen. We also found no association among individuals exposed to concentrations higher than 8 μg/g. However, exposure to medium cat allergen concentrations (0.24-0.63 μg/g) was positively associated with reported asthmatic respiratory symptoms in subjects who have experienced allergic symptoms when near animals. Conclusions The proposed 8 μg/g threshold of cat allergen concentrations for the exacerbation of allergic/ respiratory symptoms was not confirmed in a general European adult population. Potential biases attributable to avoidance behaviours and an imprecise exposure assessment cannot be excluded. PMID:26035304

  13. Experimental cochlear hydrops in cats.

    PubMed

    Eby, T L

    1986-11-01

    An experimental model of cochlear hydrops was created in cats. Ten cats underwent surgical procedures to obliterate the saccule, and their temporal bones were studied by light microscopy after sacrifice at 10 weeks. In one group the saccules were destroyed by maceration and aspiration. However, in these ears the saccular lumens were not obliterated and endolymphatic hydrops did not develop. Obliteration of the saccules was achieved in the second group after fascia was introduced into the area of the injured saccules. Cochlear endolymphatic hydrops was a consistent finding in these ears except when a fistula of the membranous labyrinth was present. However, in addition to fibrosis and new bone formation in the vestibules there were also degenerative changes in the hair cells, tectorial membranes, and striae vasculares of these cochleae. The results supported the longitudinal flow theory of endolymph and are consistent with the reported examples of cochlear endolymphatic hydrops in man. PMID:3812642

  14. Eosinophilic leukaemia in a cat.

    PubMed

    Sharifi, Hassan; Nassiri, Seyed Mahdi; Esmaelli, Hossein; Khoshnegah, Javad

    2007-12-01

    A 14-year-old female domestic shorthair cat was presented to Tehran University Veterinary Teaching Hospital for a persistent fever, anorexia, intermittent vomiting, weight loss and weakness. The main clinical signs were pale mucous membranes, dehydration and splenomegaly. The complete blood count and serum biochemistry tests revealed non-regenerative anaemia, thrombocytopenia and increased alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) test for feline leukaemia virus was negative. Blood film and bone marrow examination revealed a large number of immature eosinophils with variable sizes and numbers of faintly azurophilic granules. Cytochemical staining of blood film demonstrated 70% positive cells for ALP activity. Four percent CD34 positive cells were detected by flow cytometry. As eosinophilic leukaemia is difficult to identify by light microscopy, well-defined diagnostic criteria and the use of flow cytometry and cytochemical staining can improve the ability to correctly diagnose this type of leukaemia in cats. PMID:17669677

  15. Chemical carcinogenesis in feral fish: uptake, activation, and detoxication of organic xenobiotics.

    PubMed Central

    Varanasi, U; Stein, J E; Nishimoto, M; Reichert, W L; Collier, T K

    1987-01-01

    The high prevalence of liver neoplasms in English sole (Parophrys vetulus) and substantially lower prevalence of neoplasms in a closely related species, starry flounder (Platichthys stellatus) captured from industrialized waterways, provide a unique opportunity to compare biochemical processes involved in chemical carcinogenesis in feral fish species. Because levels of aromatic hydrocarbons (AHs) in urban sediments are correlated with prevalences of liver neoplasms in English sole, we have initiated detailed studies to evaluate the effects of endogenous and exogenous factors on uptake, activation and detoxication of carcinogenic AHs, such as benzo[a]pyrene (BaP), using spectroscopic, chromatographic, and radiometric techniques. The results obtained thus far show that sole readily takes up AHs associated with sediment from urban areas and that the presence of other xenobiotics, such as PCBs, in sediment increases tissue concentrations of BaP metabolites. Extensive metabolism of BaP occurred whether sole was exposed to this AH via sediment, per os, or intraperitoneally. Substantial modification of hepatic DNA occurred and persisted for a period of 2-4 weeks after a single exposure to BaP. The level of covalent binding of BaP intermediates to hepatic DNA was 10-fold higher in juvenile than adult sole and 90-fold higher in juvenile sole than in Sprague-Dawley rat, a species which is resistant to BaP-induced hepatocarcinogenesis. The level of chemical modification of hepatic DNA in juvenile flounder was 2-4 fold lower than that for juvenile sole and concentration of BaP 7,8-diol glucuronide in bile of sole was significantly higher than that in flounder bile, although the rate of formation of BaP 7,8-diol by hepatic microsomes was comparable for both species. Moreover, liver microsomes from both species, in the presence of exogenous DNA, metabolized BaP into essentially a single adduct, identified as (+)anti-7,8-diol-9,10-epoxy-7,8,9,10-tetrahydroBaP-dG. These results

  16. Cat Ownership Perception and Caretaking Explored in an Internet Survey of People Associated with Cats

    PubMed Central

    Zito, Sarah; Vankan, Dianne

    2015-01-01

    People who feed cats that they do not perceive they own (sometimes called semi-owners) are thought to make a considerable contribution to unwanted cat numbers because the cats they support are generally not sterilized. Understanding people’s perception of cat ownership and the psychology underlying cat semi-ownership could inform approaches to mitigate the negative effects of cat semi-ownership. The primary aims of this study were to investigate cat ownership perception and to examine its association with human-cat interactions and caretaking behaviours. A secondary aim was to evaluate a definition of cat semi-ownership (including an association time of ≥1 month and frequent feeding), revised from a previous definition proposed in the literature to distinguish cat semi-ownership from casual interactions with unowned cats. Cat owners and semi-owners displayed similar types of interactions and caretaking behaviours. Nevertheless, caretaking behaviours were more commonly displayed towards owned cats than semi-owned cats, and semi-owned cats were more likely to have produced kittens (p<0.01). All interactions and caretaking behaviours were more likely to be displayed towards cats in semi-ownership relationships compared to casual interaction relationships. Determinants of cat ownership perception were identified (p<0.05) and included association time, attachment, perceived cat friendliness and health, and feelings about unowned cats, including the acceptability of feeding unowned cats. Encouraging semi-owners to have the cats they care for sterilized may assist in reducing the number of unwanted kittens and could be a valuable alternative to trying to prevent semi-ownership entirely. Highly accessible semi-owner “gatekeepers” could help to deliver education messages and facilitate the provision of cat sterilization services to semi-owners. This research enabled semi-ownership to be distinguished from casual interaction relationships and can assist welfare and

  17. A serologic survey of wild felids from central west Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Ostrowski, Stéphane; Van Vuuren, Moritz; Lenain, Daniel M; Durand, Alma

    2003-07-01

    Forty-five wildcats (Felis silvestris), 17 sand cats (Felis margarita), and 17 feral domestic cats were captured in central west Saudi Arabia, between May 1998 and April 2000, with the aim to assess their exposure to feline immunodeficiency virus/puma lentivirus (FIV/PLV), feline leukaemia virus (FeLV), feline herpesvirus (FHV-1), feline calicivirus (FCV), feline coronavirus (FCoV), and feline panleukopenia virus (FPLV). Serologic prevalence in wildcats, sand cats, and feral domestic cats were respectively: 6%, 0%, 8% for FIV/PLV; 3%, 8%, 0% for FeLV; 5%, 0%, 15% for FHV-1; 25%, 0%, 39% for FCV; 10%, 0%, 0% for FCoV; and 5%, 0%, 8% for FPLV. We recorded the first case of FeLV antigenemia in a wild sand cat. Positive results to FIV/PLV in wildcats and feral cats confirmed the occurrence of a feline lentivirus in the sampled population. PMID:14567233

  18. Radioactive iodine therapy in cats with hyperthyroidism

    SciTech Connect

    Turrel, J.M.; Feldman, E.C.; Hays, M.; Hornof, W.J.

    1984-03-01

    Eleven cats with hyperthyroidism were treated with radioactive iodine (/sup 131/I). Previous unsuccessful treatments for hyperthyroidism included hemithyroidectomy (2 cats) and an antithyroid drug (7 cats). Two cats had no prior treatment. Thyroid scans, using technetium 99m, showed enlargement and increased radionuclide accumulation in 1 thyroid lobe in 5 cats and in both lobes in 6 cats. Serum thyroxine concentrations were high and ranged from 4.7 to 18 micrograms/dl. Radioactive iodine tracer studies were used to determine peak radioactive iodine uptake (RAIU) and effective and biological half-lives. Activity of /sup 131/I administered was calculated from peak RAIU, effective half-life, and estimated thyroid gland weight. Activity of /sup 131/I administered ranged from 1.0 to 5.9 mCi. The treatment goal was to deliver 20,000 rad to hyperactive thyroid tissue. However, retrospective calculations based on peak RAIU and effective half-life obtained during the treatment period showed that radiation doses actually ranged from 7,100 to 64,900 rad. Complete ablation of the hyperfunctioning thyroid tissue and a return to euthyroidism were seen in 7 cats. Partial responses were seen in 2 cats, and 2 cats became hypothyroid. It was concluded that /sup 131/I ablation of thyroid tumors was a reasonable alternative in the treatment of hyperthyroidism in cats. The optimal method of dosimetry remains to be determined.

  19. Central pupillary light reflex circuits in the cat: II. Morphology, ultrastructure, and inputs of preganglionic motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Sun, Wensi; May, Paul J

    2014-12-15

    Preganglionic motoneurons supplying the ciliary ganglion control lens accommodation and pupil diameter. In cats, these motoneurons make up the preganglionic Edinger-Westphal population, which lies rostral, dorsal, and ventral to the oculomotor nucleus. A recent cat study suggested that caudal motoneurons control the lens and rostral motoneurons control the pupil. This led us to examine the morphology, ultrastructure, and pretectal inputs of these populations. Preganglionic motoneurons retrogradely labeled by introducing tracer into the cat ciliary ganglion generally fell into two morphologic categories. Fusiform neurons were located rostrally, in the anteromedian nucleus and between the oculomotor nuclei. Multipolar neurons were found caudally, dorsal and ventral to the oculomotor nucleus. The dendrites of preganglionic motoneurons within the anteromedian nucleus crossed the midline, providing a possible basis for consensual responses. Ultrastructurally, several different classes of synaptic profiles contact preganglionic motoneurons, suggesting that their activity may be modified by a variety of inputs. Furthermore, there were differences in the synaptic populations contacting the rostral vs. caudal populations, supporting the contention that these populations display functional differences. Anterogradely labeled pretectal terminals were observed in close association with labeled preganglionic motoneurons, particularly in the rostral population. Ultrastructural analysis revealed that these terminals, packed with clear, spherical vesicles, made asymmetric synaptic contacts onto motoneurons in the rostral population, indicating that these cells serve the pupillary light reflex. Thus, the preganglionic motoneurons found in the cat display morphologic, ultrastructural, and connectional differences suggesting that this rostral preganglionic population is specialized for pupil control, whereas more caudal elements control the lens. PMID:24706263

  20. Central Pupillary Light Reflex Circuits in the Cat: II. Morphology, Ultrastructure and Inputs of Preganglionic Motoneurons

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Wensi; May, Paul J.

    2014-01-01

    Preganglionic motoneurons supplying the ciliary ganglion control lens accommodation and pupil diameter. In cats, these motoneurons make up the preganglionic Edinger-Westphal population, which lies rostral, dorsal and ventral to the oculomotor nucleus. A recent cat study suggested that caudal motoneurons control the lens and rostral motoneurons control the pupil. This led us to examine the morphology, ultrastructure and pretectal inputs of these populations. Preganglionic motoneurons retrogradely labeled by introducing tracer into the cat ciliary ganglion generally fell into two morphologic categories. Fusiform neurons were located rostrally, in the anteromedian nucleus and between the oculomotor nuclei. Multipolar neurons were found caudally, dorsal and ventral to the oculomotor nucleus. The dendrites of preganglionic motoneurons within the anteromedian nucleus crossed the midline, providing a possible basis for consensual responses. Ultrastructurally, several different classes of synaptic profiles contact preganglionic motoneurons, suggesting their activity may be modified by a variety of inputs. Furthermore, there were differences between the synaptic populations contacting the rostral and caudal populations, supporting the contention that these populations display functional differences. Anterogradely labeled pretectal terminals were observed in close association with labeled preganglionic motoneurons, particularly in the rostral population. Ultrastructural analysis revealed that these terminals, packed with clear, spherical vesicles, made asymmetric synaptic contacts onto motoneurons in the rostral population indicating these cells serve the pupillary light reflex. Thus, the preganglionic motoneurons found in the cat display morphologic, ultrastructural and connectional differences suggesting that this rostral preganglionic population is specialized for pupil control, while more caudal elements control the lens. PMID:24706263

  1. A cross-sectional study of Tritrichomonas foetus infection among healthy cats at shows in Norway

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background In recent years, the protozoan Tritrichomonas foetus has been recognised as an important cause of chronic large-bowel diarrhoea in purebred cats in many countries, including Norway. The aim of this cross-sectional study was to determine the proportion of animals with T. foetus infection among clinically healthy cats in Norway and to assess different risk factors for T. foetus infection, such as age, sex, former history of gastrointestinal symptoms and concurrent infections with Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium sp. Methods The sample population consisted of 52 cats participating in three cat shows in Norway in 2009. Samples were examined for motile T. foetus by microscopy, after culturing and for T. foetus-DNA by species-specific nested PCR, as well as for Giardia cysts and Cryptosporidium oocysts by immunofluorescent antibody test (IFAT). Results By PCR, T. foetus-DNA was demonstrated in the faeces of 11 (21%) of the 52 cats tested. DNA-sequencing of five positive samples yielded 100% identity with previous isolates of T. foetus from cats. Only one sample was positive for T. foetus by microscopy. By IFAT, four samples were positive for Giardia cysts and one for Cryptosporidium oocysts, none of which was co-infected with T. foetus. No significant associations were found between the presence of T. foetus and the various risk factors examined. Conclusions T. foetus was found to be a common parasite in clinically healthy cats in Norway. PMID:21689400

  2. Frequency of Piroplasms Babesia microti and Cytauxzoon felis in Stray Cats from Northern Italy

    PubMed Central

    Spada, Eva; Proverbio, Daniela; Galluzzo, Paola; Perego, Roberta; Roggero, Nora; Caracappa, Santo

    2014-01-01

    Emerging diseases caused by piroplasms pose a health risk for man and other animals, and domestic cats have been proposed as potential reservoirs for some piroplasm infections. The aim of this study was to identify the frequency of the piroplasms Babesia microti and Cytauxzoon felis in stray cats from northern Italy and to identify possible risk factors associated with these infections. Blood samples from 260 stray cats enrolled in a trap-neuter-release (TNR) program in northern Italy were examined with conventional PCR for the presence of Babesia microti and Cytauxzoon felis DNA. No sample (0.0%) tested positive for C. felis, whilst B. microti DNA was detected in two samples (0.8%). Both infected cats were in good clinical condition and recovered well from the neutering surgery. One of these two cats had a triple coinfection with Babesia microti, Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum, and Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Evidence presented in this study indicates that the blood borne protozoans Babesia microti and Cytauxzoon felis are not widely distributed in stray cat populations in Milan, northern Italy, and that the significance of cats as a reservoir host for B. microti in this area is limited. PMID:24895629

  3. [Detection frequency of haemoplasma infections of the domestic cat in Germany].

    PubMed

    Just, Frankthomas; Pfister, Kurt

    2007-01-01

    We present epidemiological data on the frequency of infections with haemotrophic Mycoplasma spp. (feline haemoplasmas) in domestic cats in Germany. From November 2004 to October 2006 135 blood samples of anaemic patients and cats without clinical symptoms were examined with conventional and real-time PCR methods. In 15,6 % of the samples DNA of one or more haemoplasma species could be detected. 8,9 % of the samples (12 cats) were infected with "Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum, whereas 7,4 % (10 cats) were infected with Mycoplasma haemofelis. Out of these, one cat harboured both species. The recently described species "Candidatus Mycoplasma turicensis" was found in 2.2 % of all samples (3 cats) and was restricted to animals coinfected with M. haemofelis. No correlation could be detected between the infection with haemotrophic Mycoplasma spp. and clinical signs of anaemia or disease. Infections were significantly correlated with age, male gender or coinfections with retroviruses (FIV, FeLV). Our data indicate, that chronically infected carriers without clinical symptoms are frequent in the investigated cat populations in Germany and that the screening of blood-donors for the presence of Mycoplasma spp. infections is advisable before clinical use. PMID:17555038

  4. Giardia in symptomatic dogs and cats in Europe--results of a European study.

    PubMed

    Epe, C; Rehkter, G; Schnieder, T; Lorentzen, L; Kreienbrock, L

    2010-10-11

    The percentage of Giardia infection in dogs and cats with gastrointestinal signs presenting to clinics was examined across Europe using the IDEXX SNAP Giardia Test (IDEXX Laboratories). Veterinary practices were asked to identify diarrheic and/or vomiting dogs and cats and to use the test on fecal samples from these animals. A selection for "asymptomatic" testing was also available on the data collection sheet for testing that occurred outside the target "symptomatic" population. Results from 8685 dogs and 4214 cats were submitted during the sampling period from 2005 to 2006. Analysis of the data showed 24.78% of the samples positive for Giardia among tested dogs and 20.3% among tested cats. The younger the dog or the cat, the higher the risk of being positive, peaking in the category below 6 months. The main clinical symptom, diarrhoea, also showed a higher risk of being positive, OR's of acute diarrhoea were almost double of those of the category "asymptomatic" for dogs or cats, the same range was calculated for chronic diarrhoea. Differences in participating countries were also seen. The risk of being positive was half or less in UK, Spain, Netherlands, Italy compared to Germany, and only in Belgium it showed to be higher. The results of this study show that Giardia is a common enteric agent among dogs and cats with gastrointestinal signs in Europe. PMID:20637546

  5. Detection of serum antibodies against Bartonella species in cats with sporotrichosis from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Kitada, Amanda A B; Favacho, Alexsandra R M; Oliveira, Raquel V C; Pessoa, Adonai A; Gomes, Raphael; Honse, Carla O; Gremião, Isabella D F; Lemos, Elba R S; Pereira, Sandro A

    2014-04-01

    Cat scratch disease is a zoonosis caused by Bartonella species, transmitted to humans through scratches or bites from infected cats and via direct contact with infected feces. Sporotrichosis, caused by the fungal complex Sporothrix, is transmitted by traumatic inoculation of the fungus. Cats are important in zoonotic transmission. Serum samples from 112 domestic cats with sporotrichosis and 77 samples from healthy cats were analyzed by indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA), using the commercial kit Bartonella henselae IFA IgG (Bion). The presence of antibodies against feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) core antigens was detected using the commercial kit Snap Combo FIV-FeLV (Idexx). The group of animals with sporotrichosis contained 93 males with a median age of 22 months, eight (7.1%) of which were positive for FIV and 15 (13.4%) for FeLV. The group of animals without sporotrichosis contained 36 males with a median age 48 months, 10 (13.0%) of which were positive for FIV and eight (10.4%) for FeLV. Of the 112 cats with sporotrichosis and 77 cats without mycosis, 72 (64.3%) and 35 (45.5%), respectively, were IFA reactive. No association was found between age, sex, FIV/FeLV and the presence of antibodies to Bartonella species. The results suggest that the study population can be considered a potential source of zoonotic infection for both diseases. PMID:24127458

  6. Peribronchiolar fibrosis in lungs of cats chronically exposed to diesel exhaust

    SciTech Connect

    Hyde, D.M.; Plopper, C.G.; Weir, A.J.; Murnane, R.D.; Warren, D.L.; Last, J.A.; Pepelko, W.E.

    1985-02-01

    This study reports the quantitative changes in the pulmonary proximal acinar region following chronic exposure to diesel exhaust and following an additional 6 months in clean air. Cats (13 months of age) from a minimum disease colony were exposed to clean air (eight cats for 27 months and nine cats for 33 months), diesel exhaust for 8 hours/day, 7 days/week (nine cats for 27 months), or diesel exhaust for 27 months followed by 6 months in clean air (10 cats). Morphologic and morphometric evaluation using light microscopy and scanning and transmission electron microscopy revealed two major exposure-related lesions in proximal acinar regions of lungs of cats: peribronchiolar fibrosis associated with significant increases in lymphocytes, fibroblasts, and interstitial macrophages containing diesel particulate-like inclusions and bronchiolar epithelial metaplasia associated with the presence of ciliated and basal cells and alveolar macrophages containing diesel particulate-like inclusions. Peribronchiolar fibrosis was greater at the end of the 6 months in clean air following exposure, whereas the bronchiolar epithelial metaplasia was most severe at the end of exposure. Following an additional 6 months in clean air the epithelium more closely resembled the control epithelial cell population. The labeling index of terminal bronchiolar epithelium was significantly increased at the end of exposure but was not significantly different from controls or exposed cats following an additional 6 months in clean air. The ultrastructural appearance of epithelial cells remained relatively unchanged following diesel exhaust exposure with the exception of diesel particulate-like inclusions.

  7. Estimating detection and density of the Andean cat in the high Andes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reppucci, J.; Gardner, B.; Lucherini, M.

    2011-01-01

    The Andean cat (Leopardus jacobita) is one of the most endangered, yet least known, felids. Although the Andean cat is considered at risk of extinction, rigorous quantitative population studies are lacking. Because physical observations of the Andean cat are difficult to make in the wild, we used a camera-trapping array to photo-capture individuals. The survey was conducted in northwestern Argentina at an elevation of approximately 4,200 m during October-December 2006 and April-June 2007. In each year we deployed 22 pairs of camera traps, which were strategically placed. To estimate detection probability and density we applied models for spatial capture-recapture using a Bayesian framework. Estimated densities were 0.07 and 0.12 individual/km 2 for 2006 and 2007, respectively. Mean baseline detection probability was estimated at 0.07. By comparison, densities of the Pampas cat (Leopardus colocolo), another poorly known felid that shares its habitat with the Andean cat, were estimated at 0.74-0.79 individual/km2 in the same study area for 2006 and 2007, and its detection probability was estimated at 0.02. Despite having greater detectability, the Andean cat is rarer in the study region than the Pampas cat. Properly accounting for the detection probability is important in making reliable estimates of density, a key parameter in conservation and management decisions for any species. ?? 2011 American Society of Mammalogists.

  8. Estimating detection and density of the Andean cat in the high Andes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reppucci, Juan; Gardner, Beth; Lucherini, Mauro

    2011-01-01

    The Andean cat (Leopardus jacobita) is one of the most endangered, yet least known, felids. Although the Andean cat is considered at risk of extinction, rigorous quantitative population studies are lacking. Because physical observations of the Andean cat are difficult to make in the wild, we used a camera-trapping array to photo-capture individuals. The survey was conducted in northwestern Argentina at an elevation of approximately 4,200 m during October–December 2006 and April–June 2007. In each year we deployed 22 pairs of camera traps, which were strategically placed. To estimate detection probability and density we applied models for spatial capture–recapture using a Bayesian framework. Estimated densities were 0.07 and 0.12 individual/km2 for 2006 and 2007, respectively. Mean baseline detection probability was estimated at 0.07. By comparison, densities of the Pampas cat (Leopardus colocolo), another poorly known felid that shares its habitat with the Andean cat, were estimated at 0.74–0.79 individual/km2 in the same study area for 2006 and 2007, and its detection probability was estimated at 0.02. Despite having greater detectability, the Andean cat is rarer in the study region than the Pampas cat. Properly accounting for the detection probability is important in making reliable estimates of density, a key parameter in conservation and management decisions for any species.

  9. Experimental transmission of Sarcocystis muris (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) sporocysts from a naturally infected cat (Felis catus) to immunocompetent and immunocompromised mice.

    PubMed

    Al-Kappany, Y M; Abu-Elwafa, S A; Hilali, M; Rosenthal, B M; Dunams, D B; Dubey, J P

    2013-12-01

    Cats serve as definitive hosts for zoonotic Toxoplasma gondii , a protozoan that threatens human reproductive health, but they also excrete sporocysts of related protozoan that pose no known human health risk. Here we provide the first definitive evidence for natural infection with the enzootic parasite Sarcocystis muris, one such enzootic parasite. Sporulated Sarcocystis sp. sporocysts were found in rectal contents of an adult feral cat ( Felis catus ) in Giza, Egypt. After these sporocysts were orally inoculated into 2 Swiss Webster mice, sarcocysts were found to have developed in skeletal muscles 114 days later. As observed through transmission electron microscopy, the cyst wall corresponded to Type 1, and the parasitophorous vacuolar membrane had tiny outpocketing of blebs (<200 nm thick) that were not invaginated into the interior of the cyst; these structures were identical to the sarcocyst wall described for a Costa Rican isolate of S. muris that has served as an experimental model for nearly 4 decades. Two parasite-free cats fed sarcocyst-infected muscles developed patent infections; fully sporulated sporocysts (10-11 × 7.0 μm) were found in the lamina propria of small intestines of cats killed 6 and 7 days postinoculation (PI). Interferon gamma gene knockout (KO) mice were orally inoculated with sporocysts from experimentally infected cats, and their tissues were examined histologically; sarcocysts were found in 5 KO mice killed 87, 115, 196, 196, 196 days PI, but no stages were seen in 5 KO mice 10, 14, 14, 18, and 39 days PI. Bradyzoites were released from intramuscular sarcocysts of a KO mouse killed 115 days PI and orally inoculated into 5 KO mice. No stage of Sarcocystis was found in any organ (including intestinal lamina propria) of KO mice killed 4, 8, 81, 190, and 190 days PI, confirming that the definitive host is required to complete the life cycle even in the case of immunodeficient mice. This is the first confirmation of S. muris infection in

  10. Potential increase in mating frequency of queens in feral colonies of Bombus terrestris introduced into Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inoue, Maki N.; Saito, Fuki; Tsuchida, Koji; Goka, Koichi

    2012-10-01

    With the exception of several species, bumblebees are monandrous. We examined mating frequency in feral colonies of the introduced bumblebee Bombus terrestris in Japan . Using microsatellite markers, genotyping of sperm DNA stored in the spermatheca of nine queens detected multiple insemination paternities in one queen; the others were singly mated. The average effective paternity frequency estimated from the genotypes of queens and workers was 1.23; that estimated from the workers' genotype alone was 2.12. These values were greater than those of laboratory-reared colonies in the native ranges of B. terrestris. The genotypes of one or two workers did not match those of their queens or showed paternities different from those of their nestmates; this may have arisen from either queen takeover or drifting of workers. These alien workers were responsible for the heterogeneous genotype distribution within each B. terrestris colony, resulting in higher estimates of paternity frequency than of insemination frequency. The high mating frequency of introduced B. terrestris may have occurred by artificial selection through mass breeding for commercialization. Moreover, polyandrous queens may be selectively advantageous, because reproduction by such queens is less likely to be disturbed by interspecific mating than that by monandrous queens.

  11. Strongyloides myopotami (Secernentea: Strongyloididae) from the Intestine of Feral Nutrias (Myocastor coypus) in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Choe, Seongjun; Lee, Dongmin; Park, Hansol; Oh, Mihyeon; Jeon, Hyeong-Kyu

    2014-01-01

    Surveys on helminthic fauna of the nutria, Myocastor coypus, have seldom been performed in the Republic of Korea. In the present study, we describe Strongyloides myopotami (Secernentea: Strongyloididae) recovered from the small intestine of feral nutrias. Total 10 adult nutrias were captured in a wetland area in Gimhae-si (City), Gyeongsangnam-do (Province) in April 2013. They were transported to our laboratory, euthanized with ether, and necropsied. About 1,300 nematode specimens were recovered from 10 nutrias, and some of them were morphologically observed by light and scanning electron microscopies. They were 3.7-4.7 (4.0±0.36) mm in length, 0.03-0.04 (0.033) mm in width. The worm dimension and other morphological characters, including prominent lips of the vulva, blunted conical tail, straight type of the ovary, and 8-chambered stoma, were all consistent with S. myopotami. This nematode fauna is reported for the first time in Korea. PMID:25352703

  12. Trace Metals Affect Early Maternal Transfer of Immune Components in the Feral Pigeon.

    PubMed

    Chatelain, M; Gasparini, J; Haussy, C; Frantz, A

    2016-01-01

    Maternal early transfers of immune components influence eggs' hatching probability and nestlings' survival. They depend on females' own immunity and, because they are costly, on their physiological state. Therefore, trace metals, whether toxic and immunosuppressive (e.g., lead, cadmium, etc.) or necessary and immunostimulant (e.g., zinc, copper, iron, etc.), are likely to affect the amount of immune components transferred into the eggs. It may also vary with plumage eumelanin level, which is known to be linked to immunity, to transfer of antibodies, and to metal detoxification. In feral pigeons (Columba livia) injected with an antigen and experimentally exposed to lead and/or zinc (two highly abundant trace metals in urban areas), we measured specific antibody transfer and concentrations of two antimicrobial proteins (lysozyme and ovotransferrin) in eggs. As expected, lead had negative effects on specific antibody transfer, while zinc positively affected lysozyme egg concentrations. Moreover, eggs from lead-exposed females exhibited higher ovotransferrin concentrations; because it binds metal ions, ovotransferrin may enable egg detoxification and embryo protection. Finally, eggs' lysozyme concentrations increased with plumage darkness of females not exposed to zinc, while the relation was opposite among zinc-exposed females, suggesting that benefits and costs of plumage melanism depend on trace metal environmental levels. Overall, our study underlines the potential ecotoxicological effects of trace metals on maternal transfers of immune components and the role of plumage melanism in modulating these effects. PMID:27153130

  13. Effects of feral horses in Great Basin landscapes on soils and ants: Direct and indirect mechanisms

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beever, E.A.; Herrick, J.E.

    2006-01-01

    We compared soil-surface penetration resistance and abundance of ant mounds at 12 western Great Basin sites (composed of 19 plots) either grazed by feral horses (Equus caballus) or having had horses removed for the last 10–14 years. Across this broad spatial domain (3.03 million ha), we minimized confounding due to abiotic factors by selecting horse-occupied and horse-removed sites with similar aspect, slope, fire history, grazing pressure by cattle (minimal to none), and dominant vegetation (Artemisia tridentata). During both 1997 and 1998, we found 2.2–8.4 times greater abundance of ant mounds and 3.0–15.4 times lower penetration resistance in soil surfaces at horse-removed sites. In 1998, thatched Formica ant mounds, which existed predominately at high elevations, were 3.3 times more abundant at horse-removed sites, although abundance varied widely among sites within treatments. Several types of analyses suggested that horses rather than environmental variability were the primary source of treatment differences we observed in ecosystem components. Tests of several predictions suggest that alterations occurred through not only direct effects, but also indirect effects and potentially feedback loops. Free-roaming horses as well as domestic grazers should be considered in conservation planning and land management in the Great Basin, an ecoregion that represents both an outstanding conservation opportunity and challenge.

  14. Molecular Detection of Rickettsia felis in Humans, Cats, and Cat Fleas in Bangladesh, 2013-2014.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, Rajib; Paul, Shyamal Kumar; Hossain, Muhammad Akram; Ahmed, Salma; Mahmud, Muhammad Chand; Nasreen, Syeda Anjuman; Ferdouse, Faria; Sharmi, Rumana Hasan; Ahamed, Farid; Ghosh, Souvik; Urushibara, Noriko; Aung, Meiji Soe; Kobayashi, Nobumichi

    2016-05-01

    High prevalence of Rickettsia felis in patients with fever of unknown origin was revealed in the north-central Bangladesh from 2012 to 2013. Subsequently, in this study, prevalence of R. felis in cats and cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis), together with febrile patients, was studied by PCR detection of 17 kDa antigen gene and DNA sequencing. R. felis was detected in 28% (28/100) and 21% (14/68) of cat blood and cat flea samples, respectively, whereas 42% (21/50) of patients were positive for R. felis. R. felis-positive cat fleas were detected at significantly higher rate on R. felis-positive cats. The results suggested a potential role of cats and cat fleas for transmission of R. felis to humans in Bangladesh. PMID:26901499

  15. Axial pattern skin flaps in cats.

    PubMed

    Remedios, A M; Bauer, M S; Bowen, C V; Fowler, J D

    1991-01-01

    The major direct cutaneous vessels identified in the cat include the omocervical, thoracodorsal, deep circumflex iliac, and caudal superficial epigastric arteries. Axial pattern skin flaps based on the thoracodorsal and caudal superficial epigastric arteries have been developed in cats. Rotation of these flaps as islands allows skin coverage to the carpus and metatarsus, respectively. The thoracodorsal and caudal superficial epigastric flaps provide a practical, one-step option in the reconstruction of large skin defects involving the distal extremities of cats. PMID:2011063

  16. Incidence of pyometra in Swedish insured cats.

    PubMed

    Hagman, Ragnvi; Ström Holst, Bodil; Möller, Lotta; Egenvall, Agneta

    2014-07-01

    Pyometra is a clinically relevant problem in intact female cats and dogs. The etiology is similar in both animal species, with the disease caused by bacterial infection of a progesterone-sensitized uterus. Here, we studied pyometra in cats with the aim to describe the incidence and probability of developing pyometra based on age and breed. The data used were reimbursed claims for veterinary care insurance or life insurance claims or both in cats insured in a Swedish insurance database from 1999 to 2006. The mean incidence rate (IR) for pyometra was about 17 cats per 10,000 cat years at risk (CYAR). Cats with pyometra were diagnosed at a median age of 4 years and a significant breed effect was observed. The breed with the highest IR (433 cats per 10,000 CYAR) was the Sphynx, and other breeds with IR over 60 cats per 10,000 CYAR were Siberian cat, Ocicat, Korat, Siamese, Ragdoll, Maine coon, and Bengal. Pyometra was more commonly diagnosed with increasing age, with a marked increase in cats older than 7 years. The mean case fatality rate in all cats was 5.7%, which is slightly higher than corresponding reports in dogs of 3% to 4%. Geographical location (urban or rural) did not affect the risk of developing the disease. The present study provides information of incidence and probability of developing pyometra based on age, breed, and urban or rural geographical location. These data may be useful for designing cat breeding programs in high-risk breeds and for future studies of the genetic background of the disease. PMID:24726694

  17. 42 CFR 71.51 - Dogs and cats.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Dogs and cats. 71.51 Section 71.51 Public Health... QUARANTINE Importations § 71.51 Dogs and cats. (a) Definitions. As used in this section the term: Cat means all domestic cats. Confinement means restriction of a dog or cat to a building or other enclosure at...

  18. 42 CFR 71.51 - Dogs and cats.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Dogs and cats. 71.51 Section 71.51 Public Health... QUARANTINE Importations § 71.51 Dogs and cats. (a) Definitions. As used in this section the term: Cat means all domestic cats. Confinement means restriction of a dog or cat to a building or other enclosure at...

  19. 42 CFR 71.51 - Dogs and cats.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Dogs and cats. 71.51 Section 71.51 Public Health... QUARANTINE Importations § 71.51 Dogs and cats. (a) Definitions. As used in this section the term: Cat means all domestic cats. Confinement means restriction of a dog or cat to a building or other enclosure at...

  20. 42 CFR 71.51 - Dogs and cats.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Dogs and cats. 71.51 Section 71.51 Public Health... QUARANTINE Importations § 71.51 Dogs and cats. (a) Definitions. As used in this section the term: Cat means all domestic cats. Confinement means restriction of a dog or cat to a building or other enclosure at...

  1. 42 CFR 71.51 - Dogs and cats.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Dogs and cats. 71.51 Section 71.51 Public Health... QUARANTINE Importations § 71.51 Dogs and cats. (a) Definitions. As used in this section the term: Cat means all domestic cats. Confinement means restriction of a dog or cat to a building or other enclosure at...

  2. Risk factors and effect of selective removal on retroviral infections prevalence in Belgian stray cats.

    PubMed

    Garigliany, M; Jolly, S; Dive, M; Bayrou, C; Berthemin, S; Robin, P; Godenir, R; Petry, J; Dahout, S; Cassart, D; Thiry, E; Desmecht, D; Saegerman, C

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of several risk/protective factors and predictors on the prevalence of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) and feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) infections in 302 stray cats captured during a trap-neuter-release programme in a mixed urban-rural area from Belgium, from 2010 to 2012. The impact of selective removal of FIV-positive cats on the apparent prevalence in the remaining population over this three-year period was also assessed. The seroprevalences over three years were 18.8 per cent for FIV and 0.7 per cent for FeLV. For FIV, the seroprevalence decreased significantly from the first year of the programme (2010; 30.5 per cent) to the last (2012; 13.1 per cent). Sex (male) and age (adult and old cats) were risk factors, while the year of sampling (years 2011 and 2012) was a protective factor. Age, sex and location were the most relevant predictors of FIV status. The data presented in this study revealed a very high FIV seroprevalence in Belgian stray cats, while FeLV was almost absent. The selective removal of positive cats had a drastic effect on the FIV seroprevalence in the remaining cat population. PMID:26744011

  3. Comparative analysis of the domestic cat genome reveals genetic signatures underlying feline biology and domestication.

    PubMed

    Montague, Michael J; Li, Gang; Gandolfi, Barbara; Khan, Razib; Aken, Bronwen L; Searle, Steven M J; Minx, Patrick; Hillier, LaDeana W; Koboldt, Daniel C; Davis, Brian W; Driscoll, Carlos A; Barr, Christina S; Blackistone, Kevin; Quilez, Javier; Lorente-Galdos, Belen; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Alkan, Can; Thomas, Gregg W C; Hahn, Matthew W; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; O'Brien, Stephen J; Wilson, Richard K; Lyons, Leslie A; Murphy, William J; Warren, Wesley C

    2014-12-01

    Little is known about the genetic changes that distinguish domestic cat populations from their wild progenitors. Here we describe a high-quality domestic cat reference genome assembly and comparative inferences made with other cat breeds, wildcats, and other mammals. Based upon these comparisons, we identified positively selected genes enriched for genes involved in lipid metabolism that underpin adaptations to a hypercarnivorous diet. We also found positive selection signals within genes underlying sensory processes, especially those affecting vision and hearing in the carnivore lineage. We observed an evolutionary tradeoff between functional olfactory and vomeronasal receptor gene repertoires in the cat and dog genomes, with an expansion of the feline chemosensory system for detecting pheromones at the expense of odorant detection. Genomic regions harboring signatures of natural selection that distinguish domestic cats from their wild congeners are enriched in neural crest-related genes associated with behavior and reward in mouse models, as predicted by the domestication syndrome hypothesis. Our description of a previously unidentified allele for the gloving pigmentation pattern found in the Birman breed supports the hypothesis that cat breeds experienced strong selection on specific mutations drawn from random bred populations. Collectively, these findings provide insight into how the process of domestication altered the ancestral wildcat genome and build a resource for future disease mapping and phylogenomic studies across all members of the Felidae. PMID:25385592

  4. Comparative analysis of the domestic cat genome reveals genetic signatures underlying feline biology and domestication

    PubMed Central

    Li, Gang; Gandolfi, Barbara; Khan, Razib; Aken, Bronwen L.; Searle, Steven M. J.; Minx, Patrick; Hillier, LaDeana W.; Koboldt, Daniel C.; Davis, Brian W.; Driscoll, Carlos A.; Barr, Christina S.; Blackistone, Kevin; Quilez, Javier; Lorente-Galdos, Belen; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Alkan, Can; Thomas, Gregg W. C.; Hahn, Matthew W.; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; O’Brien, Stephen J.; Wilson, Richard K.; Lyons, Leslie A.; Murphy, William J.; Warren, Wesley C.

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about the genetic changes that distinguish domestic cat populations from their wild progenitors. Here we describe a high-quality domestic cat reference genome assembly and comparative inferences made with other cat breeds, wildcats, and other mammals. Based upon these comparisons, we identified positively selected genes enriched for genes involved in lipid metabolism that underpin adaptations to a hypercarnivorous diet. We also found positive selection signals within genes underlying sensory processes, especially those affecting vision and hearing in the carnivore lineage. We observed an evolutionary tradeoff between functional olfactory and vomeronasal receptor gene repertoires in the cat and dog genomes, with an expansion of the feline chemosensory system for detecting pheromones at the expense of odorant detection. Genomic regions harboring signatures of natural selection that distinguish domestic cats from their wild congeners are enriched in neural crest-related genes associated with behavior and reward in mouse models, as predicted by the domestication syndrome hypothesis. Our description of a previously unidentified allele for the gloving pigmentation pattern found in the Birman breed supports the hypothesis that cat breeds experienced strong selection on specific mutations drawn from random bred populations. Collectively, these findings provide insight into how the process of domestication altered the ancestral wildcat genome and build a resource for future disease mapping and phylogenomic studies across all members of the Felidae. PMID:25385592

  5. Minimal change glomerulopathy in a cat.

    PubMed

    Backlund, Brianna; Cianciolo, Rachel E; Cook, Audrey K; Clubb, Fred J; Lees, George E

    2011-04-01

    A 6-year-old domestic shorthair male castrated cat was evaluated for sudden onset of vomiting and anorexia. A diagnosis of hypereosinophilic syndrome (HES) was made, and the cat was treated with imatinib mesylate. The cat had an initial clinical improvement with the normalization of the peripheral eosinophil count. After approximately 8 weeks of treatment, lethargy and anorexia recurred despite the normal eosinophil count and a significant proteinuric nephropathy was identified. Treatment with imatinib was discontinued. Ultrasound guided renal biopsies exhibited histologic, ultrastructural, and immunostaining changes indicative of a minimal change glomerulopathy (MCG) which has not previously been reported in the literature in a cat. The proteinuria and HES initially improved while the cat was treated with more traditional medications; however, both the problems persisted for 30 months that the cat was followed subsequently. Previous studies demonstrating the safety and efficacy of imatinib in cats do not report any glomerular injury or significant adverse drug reactions, and the exact cause of this cat's proteinuric nephropathy is uncertain. Nonetheless, the possibility of an adverse drug reaction causing proteinuria should be considered when initiating treatment with imatinib in a cat. PMID:21414552

  6. Enteric parasites of free-roaming, owned, and rural cats in prairie regions of Canada.

    PubMed

    Hoopes, Jessica; Hill, Janet E; Polley, Lydden; Fernando, Champika; Wagner, Brent; Schurer, Janna; Jenkins, Emily

    2015-05-01

    The objective of this study was to determine prevalence, intensity, and zoonotic potential of gastrointestinal parasites in free-roaming and pet cats in urban areas of Saskatchewan (SK) and a rural region in southwestern Alberta (AB). Fecal samples were analyzed using a modified double centrifugation sucrose flotation to detect helminth eggs and coccidian oocysts, and an immunofluorescence assay to detect Giardia and Cryptosporidium. Endoparasite prevalence was higher in samples from rural AB cats (41% of 27) and free-roaming SK cats (32% of 161) than client-owned SK cats (6% of 31). Parasites identified using morphological and molecular techniques included Toxocara cati, Toxascaris leonina, Baylisascaris-type eggs, Eucoleus aerophilus, Taenia taeniaeformis, Isospora spp., Cryptosporidium spp., and zoonotic genotype A of Giardia duodenalis. This study demonstrates significant differences in endoparasite prevalence in feline populations, and the value of molecular techniques in fecal-based surveys to identify and determine parasite zoonotic potential. PMID:25969584

  7. Enteric parasites of free-roaming, owned, and rural cats in prairie regions of Canada

    PubMed Central

    Hoopes, Jessica; Hill, Janet E.; Polley, Lydden; Fernando, Champika; Wagner, Brent; Schurer, Janna; Jenkins, Emily

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to determine prevalence, intensity, and zoonotic potential of gastrointestinal parasites in free-roaming and pet cats in urban areas of Saskatchewan (SK) and a rural region in southwestern Alberta (AB). Fecal samples were analyzed using a modified double centrifugation sucrose flotation to detect helminth eggs and coccidian oocysts, and an immunofluorescence assay to detect Giardia and Cryptosporidium. Endoparasite prevalence was higher in samples from rural AB cats (41% of 27) and free-roaming SK cats (32% of 161) than client-owned SK cats (6% of 31). Parasites identified using morphological and molecular techniques included Toxocara cati, Toxascaris leonina, Baylisascaris-type eggs, Eucoleus aerophilus, Taenia taeniaeformis, Isospora spp., Cryptosporidium spp., and zoonotic genotype A of Giardia duodenalis. This study demonstrates significant differences in endoparasite prevalence in feline populations, and the value of molecular techniques in fecal-based surveys to identify and determine parasite zoonotic potential. PMID:25969584

  8. Genetic Characterization of Toxoplasma gondii Isolates and Toxoplasmosis Seroprevalence in Stray Cats of İzmir, Turkey

    PubMed Central

    Can, Hüseyin; Döşkaya, Mert; Ajzenberg, Daniel; Özdemir, H. Gökhan; Caner, Ayşe; İz, Sultan Gülce; Döşkaya, Aysu Değirmenci; Atalay, Esra; Çetinkaya, Çağdaş; Ürgen, Saygun; Karaçalı, Sabire; Ün, Cemal; Dardé, Marie-Laure; Gürüz, Yüksel

    2014-01-01

    Currently, some Toxoplasma gondii genotypes are being associated with serious clinical presentations. A recent report showing the Africa 1 genotype in two local congenital toxoplasmosis cases acquired in Turkey formed the basis of this study because atypical Africa 1 genotype is most frequently detected in animals and patients from sub-Saharan Africa. Since stray cats are considered as the linkage between wild life and urban life in T. gondii transmission, the present study aimed to isolate and characterize T. gondii strains circulating in stray cats of İzmir (Western Turkey). A secondary objective was to determine toxoplasmosis seroprevalence in this cat population. Tissues obtained from 100 deceased stray cats were bioassayed and isolated strains were genotyped using 15 microsatellite markers. In addition, toxoplasmosis seroprevalence was analyzed in 1121 cat sera collected from several large veterinary clinics in İzmir. Among the 22 isolates, 19 were Type II (86.3%), two were Type III (9%) and one was Africa 1 genotype (4.5%). The overall seropositivity rates in cats were 42–48% and 33.4–34.4% according to IFA and ELISA, respectively. Seroprevalence in deceased cats was significantly higher than in healthy cats (P = 0.0033). Finding both the major clonal Type II lineage together with the Type III lineage also found in Middle East, and an atypical genotype, Africa 1 appears consistent with the specific geographic location of Turkey between three continents and raises the possibility of transportation of these strains between continents through trade routes or long distance migratory birds. In addition, the first large study of toxoplasma seroprevalence in a stray cat population was also reported. The relatively high seropositivity rates and the variety of T. gondii genotypes confirm the local stray cat population as a risk factor for human toxoplasmosis in İzmir. PMID:25127360

  9. Genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii isolates and toxoplasmosis seroprevalence in stray cats of İzmir, Turkey.

    PubMed

    Can, Hüseyin; Döşkaya, Mert; Ajzenberg, Daniel; Özdemir, H Gökhan; Caner, Ayşe; İz, Sultan Gülce; Döşkaya, Aysu Değirmenci; Atalay, Esra; Çetinkaya, Çağdaş; Ürgen, Saygun; Karaçalı, Sabire; Ün, Cemal; Dardé, Marie-Laure; Gürüz, Yüksel

    2014-01-01

    Currently, some Toxoplasma gondii genotypes are being associated with serious clinical presentations. A recent report showing the Africa 1 genotype in two local congenital toxoplasmosis cases acquired in Turkey formed the basis of this study because atypical Africa 1 genotype is most frequently detected in animals and patients from sub-Saharan Africa. Since stray cats are considered as the linkage between wild life and urban life in T. gondii transmission, the present study aimed to isolate and characterize T. gondii strains circulating in stray cats of İzmir (Western Turkey). A secondary objective was to determine toxoplasmosis seroprevalence in this cat population. Tissues obtained from 100 deceased stray cats were bioassayed and isolated strains were genotyped using 15 microsatellite markers. In addition, toxoplasmosis seroprevalence was analyzed in 1121 cat sera collected from several large veterinary clinics in İzmir. Among the 22 isolates, 19 were Type II (86.3%), two were Type III (9%) and one was Africa 1 genotype (4.5%). The overall seropositivity rates in cats were 42-48% and 33.4-34.4% according to IFA and ELISA, respectively. Seroprevalence in deceased cats was significantly higher than in healthy cats (P = 0.0033). Finding both the major clonal Type II lineage together with the Type III lineage also found in Middle East, and an atypical genotype, Africa 1 appears consistent with the specific geographic location of Turkey between three continents and raises the possibility of transportation of these strains between continents through trade routes or long distance migratory birds. In addition, the first large study of toxoplasma seroprevalence in a stray cat population was also reported. The relatively high seropositivity rates and the variety of T. gondii genotypes confirm the local stray cat population as a risk factor for human toxoplasmosis in İzmir. PMID:25127360

  10. Describing the relationship between cat bites and human depression using data from an electronic health record.

    PubMed

    Hanauer, David A; Ramakrishnan, Naren; Seyfried, Lisa S

    2013-01-01

    Data mining approaches have been increasingly applied to the electronic health record and have led to the discovery of numerous clinical associations. Recent data mining studies have suggested a potential association between cat bites and human depression. To explore this possible association in more detail we first used administrative diagnosis codes to identify patients with either depression or bites, drawn from a population of 1.3 million patients. We then conducted a manual chart review in the electronic health record of all patients with a code for a bite to accurately determine which were from cats or dogs. Overall there were 750 patients with cat bites, 1,108 with dog bites, and approximately 117,000 patients with depression. Depression was found in 41.3% of patients with cat bites and 28.7% of those with dog bites. Furthermore, 85.5% of those with both cat bites and depression were women, compared to 64.5% of those with dog bites and depression. The probability of a woman being diagnosed with depression at some point in her life if she presented to our health system with a cat bite was 47.0%, compared to 24.2% of men presenting with a similar bite. The high proportion of depression in patients who had cat bites, especially among women, suggests that screening for depression could be appropriate in patients who present to a clinical provider with a cat bite. Additionally, while no causative link is known to explain this association, there is growing evidence to suggest that the relationship between cats and human mental illness, such as depression, warrants further investigation. PMID:23936453

  11. Cystinuria Associated with Different SLC7A9 Gene Variants in the Cat

    PubMed Central

    Raj, Karthik; Osborne, Carl; Giger, Urs

    2016-01-01

    Cystinuria is a classical inborn error of metabolism characterized by a selective proximal renal tubular defect affecting cystine, ornithine, lysine, and arginine (COLA) reabsorption, which can lead to uroliths and urinary obstruction. In humans, dogs and mice, cystinuria is caused by variants in one of two genes, SLC3A1 and SLC7A9, which encode the rBAT and bo,+AT subunits of the bo,+ basic amino acid transporter system, respectively. In this study, exons and flanking regions of the SLC3A1 and SLC7A9 genes were sequenced from genomic DNA of cats (Felis catus) with COLAuria and cystine calculi. Relative to the Felis catus-6.2 reference genome sequence, DNA sequences from these affected cats revealed 3 unique homozygous SLC7A9 missense variants: one in exon 5 (p.Asp236Asn) from a non-purpose-bred medium-haired cat, one in exon 7 (p.Val294Glu) in a Maine Coon and a Sphinx cat, and one in exon 10 (p.Thr392Met) from a non-purpose-bred long-haired cat. A genotyping assay subsequently identified another cystinuric domestic medium-haired cat that was homozygous for the variant originally identified in the purebred cats. These missense variants result in deleterious amino acid substitutions of highly conserved residues in the bo,+AT protein. A limited population survey supported that the variants found were likely causative. The remaining 2 sequenced domestic short-haired cats had a heterozygous variant at a splice donor site in intron 10 and a homozygous single nucleotide variant at a branchpoint in intron 11 of SLC7A9, respectively. This study identifies the first SLC7A9 variants causing feline cystinuria and reveals that, as in humans and dogs, this disease is genetically heterogeneous in cats. PMID:27404572

  12. Cystinuria Associated with Different SLC7A9 Gene Variants in the Cat.

    PubMed

    Mizukami, Keijiro; Raj, Karthik; Osborne, Carl; Giger, Urs

    2016-01-01

    Cystinuria is a classical inborn error of metabolism characterized by a selective proximal renal tubular defect affecting cystine, ornithine, lysine, and arginine (COLA) reabsorption, which can lead to uroliths and urinary obstruction. In humans, dogs and mice, cystinuria is caused by variants in one of two genes, SLC3A1 and SLC7A9, which encode the rBAT and bo,+AT subunits of the bo,+ basic amino acid transporter system, respectively. In this study, exons and flanking regions of the SLC3A1 and SLC7A9 genes were sequenced from genomic DNA of cats (Felis catus) with COLAuria and cystine calculi. Relative to the Felis catus-6.2 reference genome sequence, DNA sequences from these affected cats revealed 3 unique homozygous SLC7A9 missense variants: one in exon 5 (p.Asp236Asn) from a non-purpose-bred medium-haired cat, one in exon 7 (p.Val294Glu) in a Maine Coon and a Sphinx cat, and one in exon 10 (p.Thr392Met) from a non-purpose-bred long-haired cat. A genotyping assay subsequently identified another cystinuric domestic medium-haired cat that was homozygous for the variant originally identified in the purebred cats. These missense variants result in deleterious amino acid substitutions of highly conserved residues in the bo,+AT protein. A limited population survey supported that the variants found were likely causative. The remaining 2 sequenced domestic short-haired cats had a heterozygous variant at a splice donor site in intron 10 and a homozygous single nucleotide variant at a branchpoint in intron 11 of SLC7A9, respectively. This study identifies the first SLC7A9 variants causing feline cystinuria and reveals that, as in humans and dogs, this disease is genetically heterogeneous in cats. PMID:27404572

  13. Describing the Relationship between Cat Bites and Human Depression Using Data from an Electronic Health Record

    PubMed Central

    Hanauer, David A.; Ramakrishnan, Naren; Seyfried, Lisa S.

    2013-01-01

    Data mining approaches have been increasingly applied to the electronic health record and have led to the discovery of numerous clinical associations. Recent data mining studies have suggested a potential association between cat bites and human depression. To explore this possible association in more detail we first used administrative diagnosis codes to identify patients with either depression or bites, drawn from a population of 1.3 million patients. We then conducted a manual chart review in the electronic health record of all patients with a code for a bite to accurately determine which were from cats or dogs. Overall there were 750 patients with cat bites, 1,108 with dog bites, and approximately 117,000 patients with depression. Depression was found in 41.3% of patients with cat bites and 28.7% of those with dog bites. Furthermore, 85.5% of those with both cat bites and depression were women, compared to 64.5% of those with dog bites and depression. The probability of a woman being diagnosed with depression at some point in her life if she presented to our health system with a cat bite was 47.0%, compared to 24.2% of men presenting with a similar bite. The high proportion of depression in patients who had cat bites, especially among women, suggests that screening for depression could be appropriate in patients who present to a clinical provider with a cat bite. Additionally, while no causative link is known to explain this association, there is growing evidence to suggest that the relationship between cats and human mental illness, such as depression, warrants further investigation. PMID:23936453

  14. Quantum metrology with spin cat states under dissipation

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jiahao; Qin, Xizhou; Zhong, Honghua; Ke, Yongguan; Lee, Chaohong

    2015-01-01

    Quantum metrology aims to yield higher measurement precisions via quantum techniques such as entanglement. It is of great importance for both fundamental sciences and practical technologies, from testing equivalence principle to designing high-precision atomic clocks. However, due to environment effects, highly entangled states become fragile and the achieved precisions may even be worse than the standard quantum limit (SQL). Here we present a high-precision measurement scheme via spin cat states (a kind of non-Gaussian entangled states in superposition of two quasi-orthogonal spin coherent states) under dissipation. In comparison to maximally entangled states, spin cat states with modest entanglement are more robust against losses and their achievable precisions may still beat the SQL. Even if the detector is imperfect, the achieved precisions of the parity measurement are higher than the ones of the population measurement. Our scheme provides a realizable way to achieve high-precision measurements via dissipative quantum systems of Bose atoms. PMID:26647821

  15. Quantum metrology with spin cat states under dissipation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jiahao; Qin, Xizhou; Zhong, Honghua; Ke, Yongguan; Lee, Chaohong

    2015-01-01

    Quantum metrology aims to yield higher measurement precisions via quantum techniques such as entanglement. It is of great importance for both fundamental sciences and practical technologies, from testing equivalence principle to designing high-precision atomic clocks. However, due to environment effects, highly entangled states become fragile and the achieved precisions may even be worse than the standard quantum limit (SQL). Here we present a high-precision measurement scheme via spin cat states (a kind of non-Gaussian entangled states in superposition of two quasi-orthogonal spin coherent states) under dissipation. In comparison to maximally entangled states, spin cat states with modest entanglement are more robust against losses and their achievable precisions may still beat the SQL. Even if the detector is imperfect, the achieved precisions of the parity measurement are higher than the ones of the population measurement. Our scheme provides a realizable way to achieve high-precision measurements via dissipative quantum systems of Bose atoms. PMID:26647821

  16. Quantum metrology with spin cat states under dissipation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Jiahao; Qin, Xizhou; Zhong, Honghua; Ke, Yongguan; Lee, Chaohong

    2015-12-01

    Quantum metrology aims to yield higher measurement precisions via quantum techniques such as entanglement. It is of great importance for both fundamental sciences and practical technologies, from testing equivalence principle to designing high-precision atomic clocks. However, due to environment effects, highly entangled states become fragile and the achieved precisions may even be worse than the standard quantum limit (SQL). Here we present a high-precision measurement scheme via spin cat states (a kind of non-Gaussian entangled states in superposition of two quasi-orthogonal spin coherent states) under dissipation. In comparison to maximally entangled states, spin cat states with modest entanglement are more robust against losses and their achievable precisions may still beat the SQL. Even if the detector is imperfect, the achieved precisions of the parity measurement are higher than the ones of the population measurement. Our scheme provides a realizable way to achieve high-precision measurements via dissipative quantum systems of Bose atoms.

  17. Molecular data reveal complex hybridization and a cryptic species of neotropical wild cat.

    PubMed

    Trigo, Tatiane C; Schneider, Alexsandra; de Oliveira, Tadeu G; Lehugeur, Livia M; Silveira, Leandro; Freitas, Thales R O; Eizirik, Eduardo

    2013-12-16

    Hybridization among animal species has recently become more recognized as an important phenomenon, especially in the context of recent radiations. Here we show that complex hybridization has led to contrasting patterns of genomic composition among closely related species of the Neotropical cat genus Leopardus. We show strong evidence of ancient hybridization and introgression between the pampas cat (L. colocolo) and northeastern populations of tigrina (L. tigrinus), leading to remarkable cytonuclear discordance in the latter. In contrast, southern tigrina populations show recent and continuing hybridization with Geoffroy's cat (L. geoffroyi), leading to extreme levels of interspecific admixture at their contact zone. Finally, we demonstrate that two seemingly continuous Brazilian tigrina populations show no evidence of ongoing gene flow between them, leading us to support their formal recognition as distinct species, namely L. tigrinus in the northeast and L. guttulus in the south. PMID:24291091

  18. Proteinuria in dogs and cats

    PubMed Central

    Harley, Leyenda; Langston, Cathy

    2012-01-01

    Proteinuria is defined as the presence of protein in the urine. Normally, circulating serum proteins are blocked by the glomerulus due to size and/or charge. Any small proteins that pass through a healthy glomerulus are reabsorbed by the renal tubules or broken down by renal tubular epithelial cells. Persistent proteinuria, in the absence of lower urinary tract disease or reproductive tract disease, is usually an indication of renal damage or dysfunction. Less commonly persistent proteinuria can be caused by increased circulating levels of low molecular weight proteins. This article reviews mechanisms of proteinuria in dogs and cats and discusses the importance of screening for and ultimately treating proteinuria. PMID:23204582

  19. Proteinuria in dogs and cats.

    PubMed

    Harley, Leyenda; Langston, Cathy

    2012-06-01

    Proteinuria is defined as the presence of protein in the urine. Normally, circulating serum proteins are blocked by the glomerulus due to size and/or charge. Any small proteins that pass through a healthy glomerulus are reabsorbed by the renal tubules or broken down by renal tubular epithelial cells. Persistent proteinuria, in the absence of lower urinary tract disease or reproductive tract disease, is usually an indication of renal damage or dysfunction. Less commonly persistent proteinuria can be caused by increased circulating levels of low molecular weight proteins. This article reviews mechanisms of proteinuria in dogs and cats and discusses the importance of screening for and ultimately treating proteinuria. PMID:23204582

  20. Unexpected Diversity of Feral Genetically Modified Oilseed Rape (Brassica napus L.) Despite a Cultivation and Import Ban in Switzerland

    PubMed Central

    Schulze, Juerg; Frauenknecht, Tina; Brodmann, Peter; Bagutti, Claudia

    2014-01-01

    Despite cultivation and seed import bans of genetically modified (GM) oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.), feral GM plants were found growing along railway lines and in port areas at four sites in Switzerland in 2011 and 2012. All GM plants were identified as glyphosate-resistant GM event GT73 (Roundup Ready, Monsanto). The most affected sites were the Rhine port of Basel and the St. Johann freight railway station in Basel. To assess the distribution and intra- and interspecific outcrossing of GM oilseed rape in more detail, we monitored these two sites in 2013. Leaves and seed pods of feral oilseed rape plants, their possible hybridization partners and putative hybrid plants were sampled in monthly intervals and analysed for the presence of transgenes by real-time PCR. Using flow cytometry, we measured DNA contents of cell nuclei to confirm putative hybrids. In total, 2787 plants were sampled. The presence of GT73 oilseed rape could be confirmed at all previously documented sampling locations and was additionally detected at one new sampling location within the Rhine port. Furthermore, we found the glufosinate-resistant GM events MS8xRF3, MS8 and RF3 (all traded as InVigor, Bayer) at five sampling locations in the Rhine port. To our knowledge, this is the first time that feral MS8xRF3, MS8 or RF3 plants were detected in Europe. Real-time PCR analyses of seeds showed outcrossing of GT73 into two non-GM oilseed rape plants, but no outcrossing of transgenes into related wild species was observed. We found no hybrids between oilseed rape and related species. GM plants most frequently occurred at unloading sites for ships, indicating that ship cargo traffic is the main entry pathway for GM oilseed rape. In the future, it will be of major interest to determine the source of GM oilseed rape seeds. PMID:25464509

  1. Unexpected diversity of feral genetically modified oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) despite a cultivation and import ban in Switzerland.

    PubMed

    Schulze, Juerg; Frauenknecht, Tina; Brodmann, Peter; Bagutti, Claudia

    2014-01-01

    Despite cultivation and seed import bans of genetically modified (GM) oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.), feral GM plants were found growing along railway lines and in port areas at four sites in Switzerland in 2011 and 2012. All GM plants were identified as glyphosate-resistant GM event GT73 (Roundup Ready, Monsanto). The most affected sites were the Rhine port of Basel and the St. Johann freight railway station in Basel. To assess the distribution and intra- and interspecific outcrossing of GM oilseed rape in more detail, we monitored these two sites in 2013. Leaves and seed pods of feral oilseed rape plants, their possible hybridization partners and putative hybrid plants were sampled in monthly intervals and analysed for the presence of transgenes by real-time PCR. Using flow cytometry, we measured DNA contents of cell nuclei to confirm putative hybrids. In total, 2787 plants were sampled. The presence of GT73 oilseed rape could be confirmed at all previously documented sampling locations and was additionally detected at one new sampling location within the Rhine port. Furthermore, we found the glufosinate-resistant GM events MS8xRF3, MS8 and RF3 (all traded as InVigor, Bayer) at five sampling locations in the Rhine port. To our knowledge, this is the first time that feral MS8xRF3, MS8 or RF3 plants were detected in Europe. Real-time PCR analyses of seeds showed outcrossing of GT73 into two non-GM oilseed rape plants, but no outcrossing of transgenes into related wild species was observed. We found no hybrids between oilseed rape and related species. GM plants most frequently occurred at unloading sites for ships, indicating that ship cargo traffic is the main entry pathway for GM oilseed rape. In the future, it will be of major interest to determine the source of GM oilseed rape seeds. PMID:25464509

  2. Epidemiological survey of zoonotic pathogens in feral pigeons (Columba livia var. domestica) and sympatric zoo species in Southern Spain.

    PubMed

    Cano-Terriza, David; Guerra, Rafael; Lecollinet, Sylvie; Cerdà-Cuéllar, Marta; Cabezón, Oscar; Almería, Sonia; García-Bocanegra, Ignacio

    2015-12-01

    A cross-sectional study was carried out to determine the prevalence of pathogenic zoonotic agents (flaviviruses, avian influenza viruses (AIVs), Salmonella spp. and Toxoplasma gondii) in feral pigeons and sympatric zoo animals from Córdoba (Southern Spain) between 2013 and 2014. Antibodies against flaviviruses were detected in 7.8% out of 142 (CI95%: 3.7-11.8) pigeons, and 8.2% of 49 (CI95%: 0.9-15.4) of zoo animals tested. Antibodies with specificity against West Nile virus (WNV) and Usutu virus (USUV) were confirmed both in pigeons and in zoo birds. Even though seropositivity to AIVs was not detected in any of the analyzed pigeons, 17.9% of 28 (CI95%: 3.7-32.0) zoo birds tested showed positive results. Salmonella spp. was not isolated in any of 152 fecal samples collected from pigeons, while 6.8% of 44 zoo animals were positive. Antibodies against T. gondii were found in 9.2% of 142 (CI95%: 4.8-13.6) feral pigeons and 26.9% of 108 (CI95%: 19.6-34.1) zoo animals. This is the first study on flaviviruses and T. gondii in feral pigeons and captive zoo species in Spain. Antibodies against WNV and USUV detected in non-migratory pigeons and captive zoo animals indicate local circulation of these emerging pathogens in the study area. T. gondii was widespread in species analyzed. This finding could be of importance for Public Health and Conservation of endangered species present in zoo parks. Pigeons and zoo animals may be included as sentinel species for monitoring zoonotic pathogens in urban areas. PMID:26616657

  3. Reconciling actual and perceived rates of predation by domestic cats.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Jennifer L; Maclean, Mairead; Evans, Matthew R; Hodgson, Dave J

    2015-07-01

    The predation of wildlife by domestic cats (Felis catus) is a complex problem: Cats are popular companion animals in modern society but are also acknowledged predators of birds, herpetofauna, invertebrates, and small mammals. A comprehensive understanding of this conservation issue demands an understanding of both the ecological consequence of owning a domestic cat and the attitudes of cat owners. Here, we determine whether cat owners are aware of the predatory behavior of their cats, using data collected from 86 cats in two UK villages. We examine whether the amount of prey their cat returns influences the attitudes of 45 cat owners toward the broader issue of domestic cat predation. We also contribute to the wider understanding of physiological, spatial, and behavioral drivers of prey returns among cats. We find an association between actual prey returns and owner predictions at the coarse scale of predatory/nonpredatory behavior, but no correlation between the observed and predicted prey-return rates among predatory cats. Cat owners generally disagreed with the statement that cats are harmful to wildlife, and disfavored all mitigation options apart from neutering. These attitudes were uncorrelated with the predatory behavior of their cats. Cat owners failed to perceive the magnitude of their cats' impacts on wildlife and were not influenced by ecological information. Management options for the mitigation of cat predation appear unlikely to work if they focus on "predation awareness" campaigns or restrictions of cat freedom. PMID:26306163

  4. Experimental proliferative glomerulonephritis in the cat.

    PubMed

    Bishop, S A; Stokes, C R; Lucke, V M

    1992-01-01

    A model of chronic serum sickness was used to induce immune-complex glomerulonephritis in seven experimental cats, by daily intravenous inoculation of an increasing dose (5 to 35 mg) of human serum albumin (HSA). At week four, two of the seven animals developed anterior uveitis. At week 23, two different animals developed the subcutaneous oedema characteristic of the nephrotic syndrome (NS), whilst the other five cats appeared clinically normal. The kidneys were examined at necropsy by light microscopy and by transmission electron microscopy. The glomeruli of four animals (three with both proteinuria and uraemia, and one with proteinuria only) showed morphological changes under light microscopy. The abnormalities suggested that a diffuse mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis (GN) had been induced in three cats and diffuse membranoproliferative GN induced in another. Ultrastructural studies revealed electron-dense deposits (immune-complexes) in six of the seven cats. Two cats without glomerular abnormalities by light microscopy had mesangial deposits and three cats with mesangial proliferative GN had deposits at mesangial, subendothelial and/or subepithelial sites. The single cat with membranoproliferative GN had deposits at mesangial, subendothelial, subepithelial and intramembranous sites. Immunohistological examination (peroxidase-antiperoxidase technique) showed that HSA and immunoglobulin (IgG and IgM) were deposited in the glomeruli of these cats. Deposits were the most dense in cats with more severe renal lesions. Deposits of IgM were most abundant. An extensive cellular infiltrate, comprising macrophages, neutrophils and plasma cells, was observed only in the four animals which showed abnormalities in glomerular ultrastructure. The disease induced in these cats thus appears to differ from the membranous nephropathy previously described in the cat and bears a close resemblance to immune complex (IC) disease in man. In view of the relatively few specific

  5. Adrenocortical suppression in cats given megestrol acetate.

    PubMed

    Chastain, C B; Graham, C L; Nichols, C E

    1981-12-01

    Megestrol acetate was given orally to 8 cats at a dose of 2.5 mg every other day for 2 weeks and to 8 cats at a dose of 5.0 mg every day for 2 weeks. Four cats were designated nontreated controls. Pre-ACTH-stimulated plasma concentrations of cortisol (hydrocortisone) and ACTH-stimulated cortisol and tolerance to large-dose glucose infusion (IV) were determined on each of the 20 cats given megestrol acetate. Cats were restrained with acepromazine maleate and ketamine hydrochloride during blood sample collection and large-dose glucose infusion. Adrenocortical function and tolerance to large-dose glucose infusion were reevaluated for 4 weeks--after 1st and 2nd weeks of megestrol acetate treatment of the treated groups, and after 1st and 2nd weeks when treatment was stopped (ie, experiment weeks 3 and 4). Each week a cat from the control group and 2 cats from the 2 treated groups were selected to determine the changes occurring during the experiment for that week; after collection of plasma samples, each week's 5 selected cats were euthanatized and necropsied. Significant impairment of adrenocortical function and alteration of adrenocortical morphology occurred with both treated groups. The most severe adrenocortical alterations occurred in the cats 1 week after megestrol acetate was no longer given (ie, experiment week 3). Megestrol acetate-induced adrenocortical suppression contributed to the death of 1 cat. It was concluded that if stress occurs to cats on treatment or soon after treatment with megestrol acetate, glucocorticoids should be supplemented. The effects of megestrol acetate on glucose tolerance were overshadowed by the unforeseen intolerance caused by chemical restraint with acepromazine maleate and ketamine hydrochloride. PMID:6280517

  6. Development of MHC-Linked Microsatellite Markers in the Domestic Cat and Their Use to Evaluate MHC Diversity in Domestic Cats, Cheetahs, and Gir Lions

    PubMed Central

    Morris, Katrina M.; Kirby, Katherine; Beatty, Julia A.; Barrs, Vanessa R.; Cattley, Sonia; David, Victor; O’Brien, Stephen J.; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn

    2014-01-01

    Diversity within the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) reflects the immunological fitness of a population. MHC-linked microsatellite markers provide a simple and an inexpensive method for studying MHC diversity in large-scale studies. We have developed 6 MHC-linked microsatellite markers in the domestic cat and used these, in conjunction with 5 neutral microsatellites, to assess MHC diversity in domestic mixed breed (n = 129) and purebred Burmese (n = 61) cat populations in Australia. The MHC of outbred Australian cats is polymorphic (average allelic richness = 8.52), whereas the Burmese population has significantly lower MHC diversity (average allelic richness = 6.81; P < 0.01). The MHC-linked microsatellites along with MHC cloning and sequencing demonstrated moderate MHC diversity in cheetahs (n = 13) and extremely low diversity in Gir lions (n = 13). Our MHC-linked microsatellite markers have potential future use in diversity and disease studies in other populations and breeds of cats as well as in wild felid species. PMID:24620003

  7. Renal leiomyosarcoma in a cat.

    PubMed

    Evans, Dawn; Fowlkes, Natalie

    2016-05-01

    Renal leiomyosarcoma was diagnosed in a 10-year-old Domestic Shorthair cat with a 3-year history of clinically managed, chronic renal disease. Sudden death was preceded by a brief episode of mental dullness and confusion. At postmortem examination, the gross appearance of the left kidney was suggestive of hydronephrosis, and a nephrolith was present in the contralateral kidney. However, histology revealed an infiltrative, poorly differentiated, spindle cell sarcoma bordering the grossly cavitated area. Neoplastic cells were immunoreactive for vimentin and smooth muscle actin, which led to a diagnosis of renal leiomyosarcoma; neoplastic cells were not immunoreactive for desmin. Leiomyosarcoma arising in the kidney is a rare occurrence in humans and an even rarer occurrence in veterinary medicine with no prior cases being reported in cats in the English literature. The macroscopic appearance of the tumor at postmortem examination was misleadingly suggestive of hydronephrosis as a result of the large cavitation and may be similar to particularly unusual cases of renal leiomyosarcomas in humans that have a cystic or cavitated appearance. PMID:26975352

  8. Reproductive patterns of pedigree cats.

    PubMed

    Johnstone, I

    1987-07-01

    A survey of Brisbane catteries was carried out to investigate reproductive patterns of pedigree cats. Eighteen breeders supplied data on 751 litters with a total of 3171 kittens covering the Persian, Chinchilla, Siamese, Burmese and Abyssinian breeds. The overall sex ratio at birth was 100 males to 92 females. There was a significant seasonal effect on sex ratio with litters conceived during the wet season (September to February) producing more males than expected and litters conceived during the dry season producing more females than expected. Litter size and breed had no significant effect on the sex ratio. The average litter size varied with the breed with the most prolific being the Burmese (5.0) then the Siamese (4.5), Persian (3.9), Abyssinian (3.5) and Chinchilla (2.8). The average litter size was smaller for the first litter than for the subsequent 3 litters. The maximum average litter size was reached at 6 years with only a moderate decline thereafter. There was a seasonal fluctuation in births with the greatest numbers being born in spring and the least in late autumn. Longhair cats showed a more marked seasonal distribution of births than the shorthairs which reproduced for most of the year, particularly the Burmese breed. PMID:3675409

  9. The optimal intravenous dose of midazolam after intravenous ketamine in healthy awake cats.

    PubMed

    Ilkiw, J E; Suter, C; McNeal, D; Farver, T B; Steffey, E P

    1998-02-01

    The effects of intravenous administration of variable-dose midazolam (0, 0.05, 0.075, 0.1, 0.3 and 0.5 mg/kg) and ketamine (3 mg/kg) were studied in twenty-four healthy unmedicated cats from time of administration until full recovery. End-points were chosen to determine the optimal dose to allow a short period of restraint without noxious stimuli, a short period of restraint with noxious stimuli and endotracheal intubation. Recovery characteristics, as well as undesirable behaviours observed during recovery, were also recorded. The dose of midazolam to achieve lateral recumbency with head down was found to be 0.016 mg/kg in 50% of the population (ED50) and 0.054 mg/kg in 95% (ED95) of the population. A midazolam dose of 0.286 mg/kg was required to prevent conscious perception of a stimulus to the ulnar nerve in 50% of the population and 0.652 mg/kg in 95% of the population. The ED50 and ED95 of midazolam required to prevent swallowing in response to a laryngoscope placed on the back of the tongue were found to be 0.265 mg/kg and 0.583 mg/kg, respectively. The ED50 doses of 0.265 mg/kg for intubation and 0.286 mg/kg for restraint with noxious stimulation were close to the tested dose of 0.3 mg/kg. At that dose, the lack of responses lasted 3.67 +/- 2.27 min for laryngoscope and 2.50 +/- 2.20 min for ulnar nerve stimulation, with recovery to walking with ataxia taking 41.50 +/- 15.18 min and complete recovery taking 3.6 +/- 1.3 h. The predominant behavioural pattern during recovery was found to be normal, but some cats also exhibited abnormal behavioural patterns. Nine of the twelve cats exhibited an abnormal arousal state, with 4 being restless and 5 being sedated. Seven of the twelve cats exhibited an abnormal behaviour when approached, with three of the cats being more difficult to approach and four of the cats being easier to approach. Eight of the twelve cats exhibited an abnormal behavioural pattern when restrained, with the cats equally divided between more

  10. Effect of immunization against melatonin on seasonal fleece growth in feral goats.

    PubMed

    Foldes, A; Hoskinson, R M; Baker, P; McDonald, B J; Maxwell, C A; Restall, B J

    1992-09-01

    Four vaccination protocols were utilized to investigate the effects of immunoneutralizing circulating melatonin on the annual cashmere growth cycle and cashmere production in Australian feral goats. A fluctuating anti-melatonin antibody response, achieved by repeated booster vaccinations, resulted in an acceleration of the growth cycle in goats which exhibited a significant immune response, compared to sham-immunized controls. Responding goats showed two cycles of cashmere length growth in the first 16 months and increased annual cashmere production in the first year. However, in the second year, these effects were no longer apparent, suggesting either some form of desensitization to melatonin, or a diminished response due to declining antibody titre. The effects of immunization were observed in both sexes; the effect on cashmere length was greater in wethers than in does. Cashmere fibre growth in response to a continuously declining plane of specific antibody showed increased cycle frequency, albeit with a decreased amplitude; guard hair growth cycles were affected to a much lesser extent. Small transient peaks of specific immunity at the summer or winter solstice were without significant effect on cashmere growth. Immunization to provoke a persistent anti-melatonin antibody response at the winter solstice resulted in significantly increased greasy fleece weight, % cashmere yield, and mass of cashmere produced, but no change in fibre diameter in both sexes. Thus the timing of cashmere growth cycles in goats may be, at least transiently, altered by appropriately timed immunization against melatonin. The mechanism of pineal-mediated regulation of cashmere growth cycles may involve (i) entrainment of an endogenous rhythm by melatonin, or (ii) seasonal alteration of cashmere follicle sensitivity to the effect of melatonin. PMID:1453313

  11. A preliminary study of effects of feral pig density on native Hawaiian montane rainforest vegetation