Home Archived Aug 21, 2018

National Wildlife Health Center

...advancing wildlife and ecosystem health

USGS National Wildlife Health Center
Quarterly Wildlife Mortality Report
April 2014 to June 2014

Location Dates A Species Mortality B Diagnosis C Laboratory D
AZ Phoenix and Scottsdale 06/18/14-ongoing Rosy-faced (Peach-faced) Lovebird 45 (e) Chlamydiosis NW
AZ Tucson 06/30/14-07/31/14 Pallid Bat, Brazilian Free-tailed Bat 60 (e) Emaciation NW
CA Batiquitos Lagoon Ecological Reserve 06/20/14-07/14/14 California Least (Little) Tern 40 (e) Starvation CAF
CA Elizabeth Lake 06/01/14-ongoing Western Pond Turtle, Red-Eared Slider Turtle 330 (e) Starvation suspect NW
CA Marysville 06/20/14-06/25/14 Hybrid Mallard Duck 20 (e) Botulism suspect NON
CA Statewide 05/01/14-**** American Crow, Western Scrub Jay 500 (e) Viral Infection: West Nile CAF, NW
DE Blackiston Wildlife Area 05/18/14-**** Wood Frog 1000 (e) Viral Infection: Ranavirus NW
DE Delaware Wild Lands 05/03/14-05/05/14 Wood Frog, Bullfrog, Unidentified Frog 1000 (e) Viral Infection: Ranavirus NW
DE New Castle County 05/15/14-**** Wood Frog, American Toad, Unidentified Frog, Southern Leopard Frog 1000 (e) Viral Infection: Ranavirus NW
GA Coolidge 04/28/14-06/04/14 Brown-headed Cowbird, Northern Cardinal, Unidentified Passerine 14 (e) Salmonellosis SCW
GA Valdosta 05/08/14-05/08/14 Northern Cardinal 50 (e) Salmonellosis SCW
IA Dunbar Slough WMA 05/23/14-05/26/14 Snapping Turtle, Painted Turtle, Blanding's Turtle 64 Emaciation NW
IA Hamilton County 05/23/14-05/26/14 Snapping Turtle 31 Undetermined NON
ISL Rif, Snaefellsness County, Iceland 05/19/14-07/05/14 Common Eider 50 (e) Open NW
MD Poplar Island 06/20/14-09/02/14 Mallard, Unidentified Shorebird, Unidentified Gull, Unidentified Passerine 200 (e) Botulism type C NW
ME Rachel Carson NWR 06/01/14-06/20/14 Wood Frog 5000 (e) Undetermined NW
MI Rouge River 06/17/14-07/01/14 Ring-billed Gull 300 (e) Salmonellosis MI
MI Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore 06/27/14-ongoing White-winged Scoter, Ring-billed Gull, Herring Gull, Double-crested Cormorant 53 Botulism suspect NON
MI Spring Lake, Petty's Bayou 04/01/14-04/15/14 Mute Swan 5 Starvation suspect NON
MN Big Cormorant Lake 06/14/14-08/15/14 Mudpuppy Salamander 12 (e) Undetermined NON
MN Knife Island, Lake Superior 06/07/14-06/07/14 Double-crested Cormorant 14 (e) Trauma: gunshot NW
MN Lock & Dam 8, Pool 8, Upper Mississippi River NWR 04/11/14-05/15/14 American Coot, Lesser Scaup, Northern Shoveler, Ruddy Duck, Bufflehead 459 (e) Parasitism: trematodiasis NW
MN Melissa Lake 06/01/14-08/15/14 Mudpuppy Salamander 200 (e) Undetermined NON
MT Ennis Lake 05/03/14-05/04/14 Eared Grebe, American Coot 400 (e) Trauma: impact NW
MT Musselshell County 05/26/14-08/28/14 Greater Sage Grouse 8 Predation NW
NE Lancaster and Douglas Counties 05/24/14-05/28/14 Cedar Waxwing 16 (e) Toxicosis suspect NW
NJ Byram and Branchville 06/03/14-07/01/14 Wood Frog, Spring Peeper, Spotted Salamander, Marbled Salamander 1100 (e) Viral Infection: Ranavirus suspect NW
NJ Frelinghuysen Township and Blairstown 06/06/14-07/01/14 Wood Frog, Spotted Salamander 16 Viral Infection: Ranavirus suspect NW
NV Las Vegas 06/01/14-06/15/14 Mallard 46 (e) Botulism type C NW
PA Meshoppen 06/22/14-06/24/14 Big Brown Bat 15 (e) Trauma NW
PA Multiple counties 05/26/14-07/27/14 Big Brown Bat 5 Metabolic Bone Disease NW
PA Stroudsburg 04/01/14-05/31/14 Bog Turtle 24 Undetermined NW
SC Coastal South Carolina 04/15/14-07/15/14 Common (Black) Scoter, White-winged Scoter 150 (e) Emaciation NW
UT Liberty Park 06/17/14-06/30/14 Mallard, Canada Goose, Domestic Duck 75 (e) Botulism type C NW
WA Whitman County 06/26/14-06/26/14 Cliff Swallow 200 (e) Unsuitable NW
WI Lock & Dam 5, Upper Mississippi River NWR 04/15/14-04/30/14 American Coot, Unidentified Scaup 105 (e) Parasitism: trematodiasis NW
WI Perrot State Park 05/09/14-06/12/14 Northern Leopard Frog 125 (e) Fungal Infection: chytrid NW
WI Pool 7, Upper Mississippi River NWR 04/16/14-05/15/14 American Coot, Lesser Scaup, Northern Shoveler 407 (e) Parasitism: trematodiasis suspect
WY Bighorn National Forest 06/20/14-07/20/14 Mountain Bluebird 40 (e) Stomatitis WY
WY Laramie County 06/25/14-06/25/14 Lark Bunting 8 Trauma: weather suspect NW
Updates and Corrections:
Location Dates A Species Mortality B Diagnosis C Laboratory D
CA Colusa NWR 10/15/13-02/15/14 American Coot, Greater White-fronted Goose 100 (e) Undetermined NW
CA Pajaro River 03/01/14-03/03/14 American Coot 138 Toxicosis: blue-green algae suspect NW
NSC Inverness County, Nova Scotia, Canada 12/01/13-04/30/14 Little Brown Bat 10 Fungal Infection: white-nose syndrome CCW
MI Keweenaw County 04/24/14-04/30/14 Little Brown Bat 50 (e) Fungal Infection: white-nose syndrome MSU
WA Seattle 12/23/13-12/23/13 American Robin, Dark-eyed Junco 12 Toxicosis: carbamate suspect NW

A **** = cessation date not available.

B (e) = estimate, *** = mortality estimate not available.

C Suspect = diagnosis is not finalized or completed tests were unable to confirm the diagnosis, but field signs and historic patterns indicate the disease; Open = diagnosis is not finalized and tests are on-going; Undetermined = testing is complete or was not pursued and no cause of death was evident

D California Animal Health and Food Safety Laboratory Network (CAF), Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative (CCW), Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MI), Michigan State University (MSU), National Wildlife Health Center (NW), No diagnostics pursued (NON), Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study (SCW), Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory (WY)

Written and compiled by the U.S. Geological Survey National Wildlife Health Center Epidemiology Team members: Anne Ballmann, Barb Bodenstein, Bob Dusek, and Jenny Chipault.

To report mortality in contiguous United States or Alaska, or to receive information about this report, please contact the USGS National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC), 6006 Schroeder Road, Madison, Wisconsin 53711, (608) 270-2480, NWHC-epi@usgs.gov.

To report mortality in Hawaii or Pacific Islands, contact NWHC - Honolulu Field Station, PO Box 50167, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 5-231, Honolulu, Hawaii 96850, (808) 792-9596, thierry_work@usgs.gov.

Chlamydiosis in rosy-faced lovebirds (Arizona)
In May 2014, a mortality event involving feral rosy-faced lovebirds (Agapornis roseicollis) in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona was reported to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC). To date, the mortality has involved at least 45 lovebirds from three locations. Four lovebirds were submitted to the NWHC for diagnostic evaluation. The cause of death was determined to be avian chlamydiosis caused by the bacterium Chlamydophila psittaci. A similar chlamydiosis mortality event in lovebirds in Mesa, Arizona was documented in August-September 2013.

The family Psittacidae, to which lovebirds belong, are common hosts for C. psittaci; however, the bacterium does not generally cause mortality in this group of birds. Lovebird mortality, and the occurrence of a disease with zoonotic potential on residential properties, prompted a two-week field investigation in August 2014 by NWHC in collaboration with Arizona Game and Fish Department, Arizona Department of Health Services, Maricopa County Department of Public Health, and the University of Georgia Infectious Disease Laboratory. The objective of the investigation was to examine the prevalence of Chlamydophila psittaci in the feral lovebird population in Maricopa County, the role other common backyard bird species have in the maintenance or spread of this bacterium, and the risk of infection by this bacterium to residential property owners that feed these species. A total of 193 birds were captured and sampled (conjunctiva/choana swab, cloacal swab, and serum) from residential back yards with bird feeders in Scottsdale and Mesa, Arizona within Maricopa County. Samples were primarily obtained from house sparrow (Passer domesticus; n = 62), rosy-faced lovebird (n = 50), house finch (Haemorhous mexicanus; n= 26), Inca dove (Columbina inca; n = 19), mourning dove (Zenaida macroura; n = 13), and rock dove (Columba livia; n = 9). In addition, environmental swabs from feeders, perches, and soil were obtained from each residential yard sampled. Diagnostic results are pending. More information about chlamydiosis can be found on the NWHC website.

Common eider mortality (Iceland)
The USGS National Wildlife Health Center is collaborating with the University of Iceland's Snaefellsnes Research Centre, the Institute for Experimental Pathology at Keldur, and the West-Iceland Centre of Natural History to investigate a mortality event involving common eiders (Somataria mollisima) from a breeding location in Rif, Iceland. Mortality was first noted in May 2014 and continued into early July 2014, with approximately 50 eiders reported dead. No other species seemed affected at this location, although gulls were observed to be scavenging some of the carcasses. This site is managed for wild common eider breeding, with eider down nest lining collected by the property owner at the end of the breeding season. This location has approximately 500 eider nests in very close proximity to each other with both incubating females and attendant males present. To date, no cause of death has been identified and the investigation is continuing. In addition to the eider mortality, a black-legged kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla) mortality event was reported approximately 9 km away during the same time period; no kittiwake carcasses were available to examine.

Snake fungal disease
Over the last decade, reports of wild snakes from parts of the eastern United States that have severe, and often fatal, skin infections have increased. These infections, referred to as snake fungal disease (SFD), are consistently associated with the fungus Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola. Clinical signs are variable and range from thickened, crusty scales and nodules below the skin to skin ulcers and severe swelling of the head. The USGS National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC) has performed diagnostic evaluations on samples collected from over 70 snakes with clinical signs consistent SFD. NWHC is also participating in a multi-state collaborative project aimed at better understanding the disease and its potential impacts on snake populations. Although the fungus is widely distributed in captive animals, O. opiodiicola has been identified in wild snakes only in the eastern United States. The NWHC is interested in reports of potential cases of SFD and in testing samples from other parts of the United States (i.e., west of the Mississippi River) to better determine the distribution of the fungus. Conservation agencies and natural resource managers in the eastern half of the U.S. are also encouraged to report suspected cases of SFD to the NWHC. More information about SFD, along with photographs of clinical signs, can be found on the NWHC website.

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
URL: http://www.nwhc.usgs.gov
Page Contact Information: Contact Form
Page Last Modified: Jun 20, 2018