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USGS National Wildlife Health Center
Quarterly Wildlife Mortality Report
January 2009 to March 2009

Location Dates Species Mortality Diagnosis Reported
AK Fairbanks North, Star County 02/12/09-02/13/09 Common Redpoll 8 Trauma NW
AL Anniston, Calhoun County 03/13/09-04/06/09 Pine Siskin 8 Salmonellosis NW
ANT Coronation Island, South Orkney Islands 01/01/09-02/04/09 Adelie Penguin 5 (e) Starvation NW
AZ Freestone District Park, Maricopa County 02/16/09-03/15/09 Unidentified Cormorant, Mallard, Unidentified Egret, Great Blue Heron 15 Undetermined NW
CA Kern NWR 01/11/09-02/05/09 American Coot, Ruddy Duck, Northern Shoveler, Redhead Duck, Gadwall, American Wigeon, Ring-billed Gull, Ring-necked Duck, Northern Pintail 450 (e) Avian cholera NW
CA Bay Delta, San Joaquin County 01/20/09-01/24/09 Tundra Swan 50 (e) Avian cholera suspect NON
CA Los Angeles County 12/18/08-01/15/09 California Brown Pelican 400 (e) Emaciation CAF, NW
CA Tule Lake NWR 03/07/09-04/22/09 Ross' Goose, Lesser Snow Goose, Cackling Goose 1,922 Avian cholera NW
CA Van Damme State Park 01/29/09-3/28/09 Bullfrog 18 Undetermined NW
CL Caleta Queule 03/28/09-03/31/09 Magellanic Penguin 1,380 Entanglement: Fishing Line OT
CT Town of Cheshire, New Haven County 02/07/09-02/08/09 Canada Goose 7 Aspergillosis UCT
CT Hartford County, Litchfield County 01/27/09-5/30/09 Little Brown Bat, Eastern Pipistrelle, Northern Long-eared Bat 100 (e) Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome NW
FL Duval and Brevard Counties 01/01/09-4/30/09 Loggerhead Sea Turtle, Green Sea Turtle 200 (e) Open UFL
FL Lake Lena and Spirit Lake, Polk County 02/25/09-02/25/09 Laughing Gull, Ring-billed Gull 25 (e) Enteritis: hemorrhagic FL, NW
FL Broward County 02/10/09-02/12/09 Unidentified Egret, Unidentified Duck 21 (e) Botulism suspect NON
FL Rotenberger WMA 02/27/09-02/28/09 Double-crested Cormorant, Roseate Spoonbill, Great Blue Heron 14 Electrocution NFL
GA Multiple Counties 03/08/09-05/21/09 American GoldfinchPine Siskin, Northern Cardinal, House Finch 45 (e) Salmonellosis SCW
IL Bellrose Waterfowl Reserve, Pulaski County 01/08/09-01/16/09 Lesser Snow Goose, Northern Shoveler 25 (e) Avian cholera NW
IL Waukegan Harbor, Lake County 03/04/09-03/05/09 Lesser Scaup, American Coot, Bufflehead 6 Open: emaciation NW
KS Neosho Wildlife Area 02/01/09-02/03/09 Green-winged Teal, Mallard 70 (e) Open NW
KS Russell Springs, Logan County 01/04/09-01/06/09 Wild Turkey, Badger, Racoon 50 (e) Toxicosis: zinc phosphide, Toxicosis: Chlorophocinone SCW, UCD
LA Acadia County 01/13/09-01/19/09 Brown-headed Cowbird, Red-winged Blackbird 150 (e) Undetermined NCA, NW
LA Natchitoches County 01/08/09-01/12/09 Lesser Snow Goose, Ross' Goose 240 (e) Hepatic lipidosis NW
MA Hampden County, Norfolk County, Middlesex County 02/02/09-5/30/09 Little Brown Bat, Northern Long-eared Bat, Eastern Pipistrelle 900 (e) Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome suspect NON
MD Deep Creek Lake State Park, Garrett County 02/19/09-04/12/09 Pine Siskin 200 (e) Salmonellosis NW
ME Leeds, Androscoggin County 01/25/09-01/25/09 Mallard 12 Trauma: impact NW
ME Multiple counties 02/15/09-05/04/09 Pine Siskin, Common Redpoll 100 (e) Salmonellosis suspect NON
MI Ann Arbor 12/26/08-02/15/09 American Crow 25 (e) Open MSU
MI Multiple counties 02/14/09-04/15/09 Pine Siskin, Common Redpoll, American Goldfinch, Northern Cardinal, American Tree Sparrow 300 (e) Salmonellosis MI
MN Fergus Falls, Wright County 10/01/08-02/01/09 Trumpeter Swan 40 (e) Lead poisoning, Emaciation, Trauma MNS
MO Osage City, Cole County 02/04/09-02/07/09 European Starling 50 (e) Gout: visceral, Toxicosis suspect NW
MT Choteau, Teton County 12/26/08-01/15/09 Mallard 90 (e) Undetermined NW
NC Cape Hatteras, National Seashore 12/25/08-02/10/09 Hooded Merganser, Bufflehead 80 (e) Emaciation, Trauma NW
NC Caldwell and Moore Counties 02/15/09-4/30/09 American Goldfinch, Pine Siskin 95 (e) Salmonellosis NW, SCW
NE Multiple Counties 02/24/09-03/15/09 Green-winged Teal, American Coot, Greater White-fronted Goose, Ross' Goose, American Wigeon, Canada Goose, Mallard, Lesser Snow Goose, Northern Pintail 350 (e) Avian cholera NW
NE Lake Ogallala, Keith County 02/03/09-02/05/09 Common Merganser, Unidentified Goldeneye 31 (e) Trauma: impact NW
NH Merrimack and Grafton Counties 02/20/09-5/30/09 Little Brown Bat, Northern Long-eared Bat 3 Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome NW
NV Washoe County 11/15/08-01/05/09 Northern Leopard Frog 6 Fungal Infection: chytrid NW
NY Hudson River, Multiple Counties 01/06/09-03/11/09 American Crow 58 Viral Infection: Reo virus-like CPE, Enteritis: hemorrhagic, Airsacculitis, Parasitism NW, NY
NY Ulster County, Washington County, Putnam County, Clinton County, Essex County 01/27/09-5/30/09 Big Brown Bat, Indiana Bat, Eastern Pipistrelle, Little Brown Bat 4,450 (e) Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome NW
NY Multiple counties 03/06/09-04/15/09 Pine Siskin, House Sparrow 15 (e) Salmonellosis NY
OH West Salem, Wayne County 03/22/09-03/24/09 European Starling 19 Trauma NW
OH Green Township, Mahoning County 03/23/09-03/25/09 American Robin 10 (e) Trauma NW
OK Cleo Springs, Major County 01/12/09-01/14/09 Lesser Sandhill Crane 160 (e) Mycotoxicosis suspect NW
OK Hackberry Flat WMA, Tillman County 01/19/09-02/04/09 Ross' Goose 100 (e) Avian cholera NW
PA Blair County 02/26/09-02/26/09 Canada Goose 54 Trauma: weather suspect PA
SD Kyle, Jackson County 03/31/09-4/1/09 Porcupine 10 Trauma suspect NW
SD Lacreek NWR, Bennett County 03/09/09-03/20/09 Mink, Beaver 4 Tularemia NW
TN Multiple counties 02/09/09-03/31/09 American Goldfinch, Purple Finch, Pine Siskin 50 (e) Salmonellosis SCW
TX Aransas NWR 01/14/09-4/30/09 Whooping Crane 23 (e) Emaciation, Predation, Viral Infection suspect NW
TX Corpus Christi Ship Channel, Nueces County 01/15/09-04/03/09 Eastern Brown Pelican 31 (e) Emaciation, Parasitism: coccidiosis NW
VA Floyd County 02/01/09-03/31/09 American Goldfinch 100 (e) Salmonellosis suspect NON
VA Bath and Giles Counties 02/15/09-5/30/09 Eastern Pipistrelle, Little Brown Bat 26 Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome NW
VA Richmond County 01/09/09-01/12/09 Ring-billed Gull, Laughing Gull, Herring Gull, Unidentified Black-backed Gull 70 (e) Clostridium perfringens suspect SCW
VT Orange County, Windsor County, Rutland County, Washington County, Windham County 01/30/09-5/30/09 Northern Long-eared Bat, Little Brown Bat 350,000 (e) Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome NW
VT Multiple counties 02/09/09-04/30/09 Pine Siskin, American Goldfinch 35 (e) Salmonellosis NW
WA Thurston County 01/16/09-02/01/09 Pine Siskin, Unidentified Finch 70 (e) Salmonellosis NW
WA Wapato Lake, Pierce County 02/02/09-02/04/09 Common Merganser, Mallard 8 Open NW
WI Multiple Counties 02/20/09-5/18/09 Pine Siskin, American Goldfinch, Purple Finch, Common Redpoll, House Finch, Northern Cardinal, Black-capped Chickadee 270 (e) Salmonellosis WI
WI Upper Mississippi River NWR 03/23/09-5/19/09 Lesser Scaup, Ring-necked Duck, American Coot, Canvasback, Bufflehead 1500 (e) Parasitism: Sphaeridiotrema globulus, Parasitism: Cyathocotyle bushiensis NW
WI Lake Michigan, Multiple Counties 03/05/09-03/31/09 Unidentified Goldeneye, Unidentified Scaup 100 (e) Emaciation WI
WV Multiple Counties 02/12/09-4/22/09 Pine Siskin, American Goldfinch, Purple Finch 30 (e) Salmonellosis NW, SCW
WV Hamilton and Trout Caves, Pendleton County 01/24/09-5/19/09 Eastern Pipistrelle, Northern Long-eared Bat, Little Brown Bat 50 (e) Fungal Infection: White-Nose Syndrome NW, SCW
Updates and Corrections:
Location Dates Species Mortality Diagnosis Reported
AZ Maricopa County 10/01/08-12/15/08 Northern Flicker, Mourning Dove 26 Undetermined, Toxicosis suspect NW
NY Suffolk County 06/24/08-09/12/08 Southern Leopard Frog, Unidentified Fish, Bullfrog 165 Perkinsus-like Organism, Fungal Infection: Chytrid Suspect NW
MD Montgomery County 11/01/08-12/31/08 Eastern Box Turtle 6 Viral Infection: Ranavirus, Viral Infection: Ranavirus suspect NW
MI Delta, Emmett, Mason, Oceana, and Schoolcraft Counties 06/27/08-11/18/08 Ring-billed Gull, Double-crested Cormorant, Horned Grebe, Red-necked Grebe, Common Loon, Herring Gull, White-winged Scoter, Mallard 135 (e) Botulism type E MI
MI Sleeping Bear Dunes National Seashore 06/30/08-11/29/08 Ring-billed Gull, Double-crested Cormorant, Common Loon, Herring Gull, Caspian Tern, Least Sandpiper, Common Merganser 104 (e) Botulism type E NW, OT
PA Presque Isle State Park 05/26/08-11/25/08 Ring-billed Gull, American Crow, Common Loon, Great Blue Heron, Herring Gull, Unidentified Waterfowl 364 (e) Botulism type C, Botulism type E, Trauma, Aspergillosis NW
WY Yellowstone National Park 05/01/08-10/01/08 Timber (Gray) Wolf 45 (e) Distemper, Sarcoptic Mange NON

(e) = estimate, “suspect” = Diagnosis is not finalized, but field signs and historic patterns indicate the disease.

California Animal Health Food Safety Lab Network (CAF), Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FL), Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MI), Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MNS), Michigan State University (MSU), North Carolina State Lab (NCA), Ashland National Forensics Laboratory (NFL), No diagnostics pursued (NON), USGS National Wildlife Health Center (NW), NY State Department, DEC, Division of Fish, Wildlife & Marine Resources (NY), Other (OT), Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostic Lab (PA), Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study (SCW), UC Davis (UCD), University of Connecticut Wildlife Laboratory (UCT), University of Florida (UFL), Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Health Lab (WI)

Written and compiled by: Anne Ballmann - Eastern US, Krysten Schuler - Western US, Jennifer Buckner – Biological Technician, and Julia Hoeh - Technician

To report mortality or receive information about this report, please contact the USGS National Wildlife Health Center, 6006 Schroeder Road, Madison , WI 53711

Eastern United States

Anne Ballmann
Wildlife Disease Specialist
Phone: (608) 270-2445
FAX: (608) 270-2415
Email: aballmann@usgs.gov

Western United States

Krysten Schuler
Wildlife Disease Ecologist
Phone: (608) 270-2447
FAX: (608) 270-2415
Email: kschuler@usgs.gov

Hawaiian Islands

Thierry Work
Wildlife Disease Ecologist
P.O. Box 50167
300 Ala Moana Blvd., Rm 8-132
Honolulu, HI 96850
Phone: (808) 792-9520
FAX: (808) 792-9596
Email: Thierry_work@usgs.gov

Quarterly Mortality Reports

Avian cholera in waterfowl in California and Nationwide (CA)
Tulelake and Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuges experienced substantial mortality from avian cholera this spring. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service refuge managers reported nearly 2000 dead birds were collected as part of their disease control operations. Snow geese and Ross’ geese comprised 90% of the birds collected. The mortality event began in early March and subsided in mid to late April. Avian cholera events are annual events at the refuges. The mortality totals in 2009 were less that those in 2008 that lasted two and a half months with mortality estimated at 4500 birds. Cold weather conditions contribute to avian cholera outbreaks by concentrating birds in certain migration stopover locations. Prompt collection and disposal of carcasses removes the causative bacteria, Pasturella multocida, from the environment. Additional avian cholera outbreaks in early 2009 totaling several hundred birds occurred at Kern and Butte Sink NWR, both in California. Lesser outbreaks were documented in the Mississippi and Central Flyways at Bellrose Waterfowl Reserve, IL; Hackberry Flat Wildlife Management Area, OK; and Rainwater Basin Wetland Management District, NE.

Avian salmonellosis mortality confirmed in numerous states (WA, MN, WI, AL, GA, TN, NC, VA, WV, MD, VT, ID)
Recent outbreaks of avian salmonellosis (Salmonella typhimurium) have been confirmed in wild birds across several states since January 2009. Suspected salmonellosis mortality also was reported from CA, UT, ME, and PA. Concerned citizens across the country have reported finding dead or distressed wild birds near their homes and bird feeders. Public concern most likely is heightened due to the recent Salmonella cases in humans and numerous product recalls. There currently is no evidence that the strains found in dead wild birds this year are the same strains of Salmonella that prompted the recalls in peanuts, pistachios, or wild bird seed. Large-scale mortalities of passerines using feeding stations are common across the United States and often occur during times of increased supplemental feeding, such as winter and spring. Smaller outbreaks of salmonellosis are reported yearly, but there is no indication that this year’s mortality estimates are higher than previous years.

Magellanic penguin mortality in Chile
In a report from Chile, an estimated 1380 Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus, Forster, 1781) died and were washed up on The Pines section of beach in Queule in late March. Specimens were collected and examined at the Southern University of Chile in Valdivia. Most of the examined birds had abundant fat, and some were found to have eaten sardines. There were histological lesions consistent with asphyxia and organ congestion. There was no indication of viruses or toxicants, but several specimens had a necrotic hepatitis similar to avian cholera. There was a fleet of fishing vessels off the coast using floating nets for anchovy and sardines; some fishermen admitted penguins were caught in the nets. Official speculate that the number dead could be twice as high due to carcasses floating at sea. Magellanic penguins migrate north with juveniles following the sardines. There were mortality events between 1991-1996 involving Humboldt penguins caught in fishing nets off the coast of Chile. Investigators suggested future management actions should include creation of an emergency group to respond to future mortality events in birds, mammals, and fish, as well as a coordinating entity between state, federal, and university resources. Information provided by Dr. Roberto Schlatter, Southern University of Chile.

Research progress on White-nose syndrome of bats
Scientists are fervently working to uncover the mystery of bat white-nose syndrome (WNS), an emerging disease, that is responsible for the loss of nearly half million insectivorous bats of 5 species in the eastern United States. Little brown bats and eastern pipistrelles have been particularly hard hit with as many as 90-100% of the population wiped out at some winter hibernacula. State, federal, academic, and non-profit organizations have partnered to investigate the disease, its impact on bat populations, and management options. Infection and transmission trials investigating the fungus, now known as Geomyces destructans, as the primary cause of WNS have been carried out at the NWHC. Other studies in which the NWHC are involved include soil sample surveys to determine G. destructans distribution relative to affected hibernacula, summer bat surveys for evidence of latent infections, and evaluation of possible treatment or control options. Concern about possible human-vectored transmission caused the USFWS to issue cave closure recommendations to reduce the risk and speed of disease spread to sites in the Midwest where much larger winter hibernacula occur.

Request for Wildlife Mortality and Morbidity Event Reporting (All States)
The Quarterly Wildlife Mortality Report, published in the Wildlife Disease Association’s newsletter, is intended to inform wildlife professionals of wildlife events of interest. The authors kindly request that investigation reports of recent die-offs of mammals, birds, amphibians, and reptiles be submitted for inclusion in the publication and on the related website (http://www.nwhc.usgs.gov/mortality_events/ongoing.jsp). Credit will be given to appropriate diagnostic laboratories.

The Quarterly Mortality Report represents the most current information available to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center at the time of publication. We encourage researchers to contact us to acquire data directly. External request forms for mortality information can be obtained from Jennifer Buckner at 608-270-2443 or email: jBuckner@usgs.gov.

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