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Sample records for vulpes

  1. Abdominal Cysticercosis in a Red Fox ( Vulpes vulpes ).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whipp, Christopher James; Daoust, Pierre-Yves; Conboy, Gary; Gelens, Hans

    2017-01-01

    A large abdominal mass containing numerous cysticerci identified as those of Taenia crassiceps (=Cysticercus longicollis) was found in the pelvic region of the abdominal cavity of a severely constipated and emaciated red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) in Prince Edward Island, Canada. Cysticercosis has not previously been reported in a wild canid in North America.

  2. Neglected intravascular pathogens, Babesia vulpes and haemotropic Mycoplasma spp. in European red fox (Vulpes vulpes) population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koneval, Martina; Miterpáková, Martina; Hurníková, Zuzana; Blaňarová, Lucia; Víchová, Bronislava

    2017-08-30

    Wild animals, especially canids, are important reservoirs of vector-borne pathogens, that are transmitted by the ticks and other bloodsucking arthropods. In total, 300 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), shot by the hunters in eastern and northern Slovakia, were screened for the presence of vector-borne pathogens by PCR-based methods Blood samples were obtained from nine red foxes and tissue samples originated from 291 animals (the liver tissue samples from 49 foxes and spleen samples from 242 red foxes). Babesia vulpes and haemotropic Mycoplasma species were identified by amplification and sequencing of 18S rRNA and 16S rRNA gene fragments, respectively. Overall, the presence of these pathogens was recorded in 12.3% of screened DNA samples. Altogether 9.7% (29/300) of investigated foxes carried DNA of Babesia spp. In total, 12 out of 29 Babesia spp. PCR - positive amplicons were further sequenced and identified as B. vulpes (41.4%; 12/29), remaining 17 samples are referred as Babesia sp. (58.6%; 17/29). Overall prevalence of B. vulpes reached 4.0% (n=300). Thirteen (4.3%) samples tested positive for distinct Mycoplasma species. To the best of our knowledge, this study brings the first information on B. vulpes infection in red foxes in Slovakia, and the first data on the prevalence and diversity of haemotropic Mycoplasma spp. in European red fox population. Moreover, co-infections with B. vulpes and Mycoplasma spp. were confirmed in 1.7% of tested DNA samples. The relatively high rates of blood pathogen' prevalence and species diversity in wild foxes indicate the role of the fox population in the maintenance of the parasites in sylvatic cycles and strengthen the assumption that foxes play an important role in spreading of infectious microorganisms within and outside the natural foci. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Genetic variability within the Polish population of red fox (Vulpes vulpes – preliminary results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdalena Zatoń-Dobrowolska

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Red fox (Vulpes vulpes represents family Canidae and is a very common predator in Poland. Foxes are present throughout all the country in a different geographical regions and habitats. The analyzed dataset consisted of 130 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes. There were 24 microsatellite sequences studied. The observed (HO and expected (HS heterozygosities were comparable within respective loci. The low genetic diversity of the population was found.

  4. A behavioral audiogram of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malkemper, E Pascal; Topinka, Václav; Burda, Hynek

    2015-02-01

    We determined the absolute hearing sensitivity of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) using an adapted standard psychoacoustic procedure. The animals were tested in a reward-based go/no-go procedure in a semi-anechoic chamber. At 60 dB sound pressure level (SPL) (re 20 μPa) red foxes perceive pure tones between 51 Hz and 48 kHz, spanning 9.84 octaves with a single peak sensitivity of -15 dB at 4 kHz. The red foxes' high-frequency cutoff is comparable to that of the domestic dog while the low-frequency cutoff is comparable to that of the domestic cat and the absolute sensitivity is between both species. The maximal absolute sensitivity of the red fox is among the best found to date in any mammal. The procedure used here allows for assessment of animal auditory thresholds using positive reinforcement outside the laboratory. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Systemic AA amyloidosis in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rising, Anna; Cederlund, Ella; Palmberg, Carina; Uhlhorn, Henrik; Gaunitz, Stefan; Nordling, Kerstin; Ågren, Erik; Ihse, Elisabet; Westermark, Gunilla T; Tjernberg, Lars; Jörnvall, Hans; Johansson, Jan; Westermark, Per

    2017-11-01

    Amyloid A (AA) amyloidosis occurs spontaneously in many mammals and birds, but the prevalence varies considerably among different species, and even among subgroups of the same species. The Blue fox and the Gray fox seem to be resistant to the development of AA amyloidosis, while Island foxes have a high prevalence of the disease. Herein, we report on the identification of AA amyloidosis in the Red fox (Vulpes vulpes). Edman degradation and tandem MS analysis of proteolyzed amyloid protein revealed that the amyloid partly was composed of full-length SAA. Its amino acid sequence was determined and found to consist of 111 amino acid residues. Based on inter-species sequence comparisons we found four residue exchanges (Ser31, Lys63, Leu71, Lys72) between the Red and Blue fox SAAs. Lys63 seems unique to the Red fox SAA. We found no obvious explanation to how these exchanges might correlate with the reported differences in SAA amyloidogenicity. Furthermore, in contrast to fibrils from many other mammalian species, the isolated amyloid fibrils from Red fox did not seed AA amyloidosis in a mouse model. © 2017 The Protein Society.

  6. Intestinal parasites of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Slovenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergles Rataj, Aleksandra; Posedi, Janez; Zele, Diana; Vengušt, Gorazd

    2013-12-01

    In the present study, 428 foxes were collected and examined for intestinal helminths using the washing-out method. Parasites were found in 93.2% of the examined animals. The most frequently identified nematodes were Uncinaria stenocephala (58.9%), Toxocara canis (38.3%) and Molineus patens (30.6%). Other nematodes found were Pterygodermatites affinis (4.2%), Capillaria sp. (2.8%), Crenosoma vulpis (2.8%), Toxascaris leonina (2.5%), Trichuris vulpis (0.7%) and Physaloptera sp. (0.2%). Mesocestoides sp. (27.6%) and Taenia crassiceps (22.2%) were the most prevalent cestodes, followed by T. polyacantha (6.5%), Hymenolepis nana (2.1%), T. pisiformis (2.1%) and Dipylidium caninum (1.4%). The study also revealed four trematode species: Rossicotrema donicum (1.6%), Heterophyes heterophyes (1.1%), Metagonimus yokogawai (1.1%), Prohemistomum appendiculatum (0.4%) and two protozoan species: oocysts of Sarcocystis (2.8%) and Isospora (0.4%). This is the first extensive study on the intestinal parasites of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Slovenia. The 2.6% prevalence of Echinococcus multilocularis in the same sample population as investigated herein has been reported previously (Vergles Rataj et al., 2010).

  7. Trichinella britovi in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Portugal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, Ana Patrícia; Vila-Viçosa, Maria João; Coutinho, Teresa; Cardoso, Luís; Gottstein, Bruno; Müller, Norbert; Cortes, Helder C E

    2015-06-15

    Trichinellosis is one of the most important foodborne parasitic zoonoses, caused by nematodes of the genus Trichinella. Pigs and other domestic and wild animals, including red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), are sources of Trichinella infection for human beings. Trichinella britovi is the major agent of infection in sylvatic animals and the most important species circulating in the European wildlife. The present study aimed at assessing Trichinella spp. infection in red foxes from the North of Portugal. Forty-seven carcasses of wild red foxes shot during the official hunting season or killed in road accidents were obtained between November 2008 and March 2010. In order to identify the presence of Trichinella spp. larvae in red foxes, an individual artificial digestion was performed using approximately 30 g of muscle samples. Larvae of Trichinella spp. were detected in one (2.1%) out of the 47 assessed foxes. After a multiplex polymerase chain reaction analysis, T. britovi was molecularly identified as the infecting species. The recognition of T. britovi in a red fox confirms that a sylvatic cycle is present in the North of Portugal and that the local prevalence of Trichinella infection in wildlife must not be ignored due to its underlying zoonotic risks. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Measurement repeatability of tibial tuberosity-trochlear groove offset distance in red fox (Vulpes vulpes) cadavers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miles, James Edward; Jensen, Bente Rona; Kirpensteijn, Jolle

    2013-01-01

    . Animals-12 red fox (Vulpes vulpes) cadavers. Procedures-CT images of each hind limb in intact cadavers were obtained; at 1-week intervals, 3 reconstructions were performed that were based on 1 plane passing through the centers of the femoral head and medial condyle and parallel to the caudal femoral...

  9. Intestinal helminths of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes in north-west Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magi M.

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available A total of 180 foxes (Vulpes vulpes from an area scarcely investigated of north-west Italy, were examined for intestinal helminths using sedimentation and counting technique (SCT. Faecal samples were submitted to centrifugation with 50 % zinc sulphate used as flotation solution.

  10. Red fox, Vulpes vulpes, kills a European beaver, Castor fiber, kit

    OpenAIRE

    Kile, Nils B.; Nakken, Petter J.; Rosell, Frank; Espeland, Sigurd

    1996-01-01

    We observed an adult Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) attack, kill and partially consume a 2-month-old female kit European Beaver (Castor fiber) near its lodge in Norway. The inner organs were consumed first. One adult beaver apparently attempted to frighten the fox away by tail-slapping.

  11. Aujeszky's disease in red fox (Vulpes vulpes): phylogenetic analysis unravels an unexpected epidemiologic link.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caruso, Claudio; Dondo, Alessandro; Cerutti, Francesco; Masoero, Loretta; Rosamilia, Alfonso; Zoppi, Simona; D'Errico, Valeria; Grattarola, Carla; Acutis, Pier Luigi; Peletto, Simone

    2014-07-01

    We describe Aujeszky's disease in a female of red fox (Vulpes vulpes). Although wild boar (Sus scrofa) would be the expected source of infection, phylogenetic analysis suggested a domestic rather than a wild source of virus, underscoring the importance of biosecurity measures in pig farms to prevent contact with wild animals.

  12. Food composition and feeding ecology of the Red Fox Vulpes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Food composition of the Red Fox Vulpes vulpes populations in different habitats in Egypt is ..... The dietary choices of small carnivores such as the Red Fox will depend primarily ... Similarly, feeding on carrion would be most cost effective. The.

  13. The impact of sarcoptic mange Sarcoptes scabiei on the British fox Vulpes vulpes population

    OpenAIRE

    Soulsbury, Carl; Iossa, Graziella; Baker, Philip; Cole, Nik; Funk, Stephan; Harris, Stephen

    2007-01-01

    1. Disease epizootics can significantly influence host population dynamics and the structure and functioning of ecological communities. Sarcoptic mange Sarcoptes scabiei has dramatically reduced red fox populations Vulpes vulpes in several countries, including Britain, although impacts on demographic processes are poorly understood. We review the literature on the impact of mange on red fox populations, assess its current distribution in Britain through a questionnaire survey a...

  14. Antibodies to Rickettsia spp. and Borrelia burgdorferi in Spanish Wild Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

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    Lledó, Lourdes; Serrano, José Luis; Isabel Gegúndez, María; Giménez-Pardo, Consuelo; Saz, José Vicente

    2016-01-01

    We examined 314 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) from the province of Soria, Spain, for Rickettsia typhi, Rickettsia slovaca, and Borrelia burgdorferi infection. Immunofluorescence assays showed 1.9% had antibodies to R. typhi, 6.7% had antibodies to R. slovaca, and 8.3% had antibodies to B. burgdorferi. Serostatus was not correlated with sex or age. Because red foxes can be infected by Rickettsiae and B. burgdorferi, presence of red foxes may be and indicator for the presence of these pathogens.

  15. Epidemiological study on the Trichinellosis of the fox (Vulpes vulpes in Tuscany (Central Italy

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    Marta Magi

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract During the years 2004-2005, 112 foxes (Vulpes vulpes and 4 badgers (Meles meles were caught in different areas of Tuscany (Central Italy and examined for Trichinella infection, using the diagnostic technique of artificial digestion through Stomacher. No animal was positive for Trichinella larvae. According to our results, Tuscany can be considered a low-risk area for trichinellosis in the fox. In this region the presence of the parasite cannot be ruled out, two cases of infection being reported in 1993. Riassunto Epidemiologia della trichinellosi della volpe (Vulpes vulpes in Toscana (Italia centrale. Nel corso degli anni 2004-2005, 112 volpi (Vulpes vulpes e 4 tassi (Meles meles sono stati catturati ed esaminati per la presenza di infestione da Trichinella in differenti aree della Toscana (Italia centrale. L'indagine di laboratorio è stata condotta mediante digestione artificiale tramite Stomacher. Nessun animale è risultato positivo. Da questi risultati si può ritenere la Toscana una regione a basso rischio di infezione. La presenza del parassita non può però essere esclusa totalmente. Infatti, nel 1993 sono stati riportati due casi di infestione.

  16. Porencephaly in a fennec fox (Vulpes zerda)

    OpenAIRE

    YAMAZAKI, Mutsumi; YOSHIMOTO, Saeko; ISHIKAWA, Tomoko; UNE, Yumi

    2016-01-01

    A postmortem examination revealed a large brain cavity in the right cerebral hemisphere of a 9-year-old male fennec (Vulpes zerda). The cavity was filled with cerebrospinal fluid and extended to the right lateral ventricle. Swelling and displacement of the right hippocampal area were also observed. Histologic examination revealed no evidence of previous infarct lesions, hemorrhage, inflammation or invasive tumor cells. Observation of the defective part suggested a local circulatory disorder d...

  17. Toxigenic Corynebacterium ulcerans isolated from a free-roaming red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sting, Reinhard; Ketterer-Pintur, Sandra; Contzen, Matthias; Mauder, Norman; Süss-Dombrowski, Christine

    2015-01-01

    Corynebacterium (C.) ulcerans could be isolated from the spleen of a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) that had been found dead in the state of Baden-Württemberg, Germany. Pathohistological examination suggested that the fox had died of distemper, as was confirmed by PCR. The isolate was identified biochemically, by MALDI-TOF MS, FT-IR and by partial 16S rRNA, rpoB and tox gene sequencing. Using the Elek test the C. ulcerans isolate demonstrated diphtheria toxin production. FT-IR and sequencing data obtained from the C. ulcerans isolate from the red fox showed higher similarity to isolates from humans than to those from wild game.

  18. The complete mitochondrial genome sequence of the Tibetan red fox (Vulpes vulpes montana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jin; Zhang, Honghai; Zhao, Chao; Chen, Lei; Sha, Weilai; Liu, Guangshuai

    2015-01-01

    In this study, the complete mitochondrial genome of the Tibetan red fox (Vulpes Vulpes montana) was sequenced for the first time using blood samples obtained from a wild female red fox captured from Lhasa in Tibet, China. Qinghai--Tibet Plateau is the highest plateau in the world with an average elevation above 3500 m. Sequence analysis showed it contains 12S rRNA gene, 16S rRNA gene, 22 tRNA genes, 13 protein-coding genes and 1 control region (CR). The variable tandem repeats in CR is the main reason of the length variability of mitochondrial genome among canide animals.

  19. Diagnosis and treatment of Neospora caninum-associated dermatitis in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with concurrent Toxoplasma gondii infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    A 3-month- old red fox (Vulpes vulpes) developed generalized crusty plaques on its body during rehabilitation after an automobile accident requiring amputation of 1 leg. Histological examination of biopsy of skin lesion revealed granolomatous dermatitits with many intralesional protozoal tachyzoites...

  20. A spatial analysis of a population of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in the Dutch coastal dune area

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dekker, J.J.A.; Stein, A.; Heitkönig, I.M.A.

    2001-01-01

    The red fox Vulpes vulpes is usually classi?ed as being territorial, dispersing or transient. Past studies have focused almost exclusively on territorial or dispersing foxes, leaving transient foxes out of the analysis. In this paper, we present spatial-statistical methods for the classi?cation of

  1. Radiographic, ultrasonographic, and anatomic assessment of femoral trochlea morphology in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miles, James Edward; Westrup, Ulrik; Svalastoga, Eiliv Lars

    2014-01-01

    Objective-To compare repeatability and equivalency of measures of femoral trochlea depth and trochlear angle in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) determined by use of radiography, ultrasonography, and digital photography of cadaver limbs. Sample-24 pelvic limbs from 12 red fox cadavers. Procedures...... probe location, which could limit quantitative use of ultrasonography in assessing proximal trochlear depth in a clinical setting....

  2. Extraintestinal nematodes of the red fox Vulpes vulpes in north-west Italy.

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    Magi, M; Guardone, L; Prati, M C; Mignone, W; Macchioni, F

    2015-07-01

    Extraintestinal nematodes of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) are a wide group of parasites that infect wild and domestic carnivores and occasionally humans. Nematodes in the cardiopulmonary system, stomach, urinary apparatus and muscle tissue of 165 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) from north-west Italy (Liguria and Piedmont) were investigated between 2009 and 2012. Of the cardiopulmonary nematodes, a high prevalence of Angiostrongylus vasorum and Eucoleus aerophilus (syn. Capillaria aerophila) was found, 78.2% and 41.8% respectively; Crenosoma vulpis (15.8%) and Filaroides spp. (4.8%) were also found. Spirocerca lupi (23.5%), Aonchotheca putorii (syn. Capillaria putorii) (8.6%) and Physaloptera spp. (2.5%) were detected in the stomach and Pearsonema plica (syn. Capillaria plica) (56.8%) in the bladder. Eucoleus boehmi (syn. Capillaria boehmi) was also detected in the nasal cavities of one of the two foxes examined. A coprological examination revealed eggs of E. aerophilus, A. putorii, S. lupi, Physaloptera spp. and eggs of intestinal parasites. Filarial worms were absent in all the 165 animals examined, nor was there evidence of Trichinella spp. in any of the foxes. The foxes were found to host a high prevalence of many species of extraintestinal nematodes. The prevalence of A. vasorum in foxes found in the present study is among the highest in Europe. In addition, to the best of our knowledge, E. boehmi and Filaroides spp. have never been reported before in this host in Italy.

  3. Porencephaly in a fennec fox (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamazaki, Mutsumi; Yoshimoto, Saeko; Ishikawa, Tomoko; Une, Yumi

    2016-12-01

    A postmortem examination revealed a large brain cavity in the right cerebral hemisphere of a 9-year-old male fennec (Vulpes zerda). The cavity was filled with cerebrospinal fluid and extended to the right lateral ventricle. Swelling and displacement of the right hippocampal area were also observed. Histologic examination revealed no evidence of previous infarct lesions, hemorrhage, inflammation or invasive tumor cells. Observation of the defective part suggested a local circulatory disorder during the fetal stage, although the cause was not detected. No neurological symptoms that could enable a provisional diagnosis were observed during the course of his life. This is the first report of asymptomatic porencephaly in a fennec fox.

  4. Foraging ecology and spatial behavior of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in a wet grassland ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meisner, Katrine; Sunde, Peter; Clausen, Kevin Kuhlmann

    2014-01-01

    We investigated diet composition, habitat selection and spatial behaviour of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in relation to the availability of wader nests in a coastal polder area in southwest Denmark. The predatory role of the red fox in wet grassland ecosystems has profound implications...... for conservation status of declining populations of grassland breeding waders. However, few studies have focussed on the foraging ecology and behaviour of the red fox in these landscapes. Faecal analyses revealed that fox diet consisted of birds (43 % of prey remains / 32 % of biomass), rodents (39 % / 21...... %), sheep (mainly as carrion, 14 % / 41 %) and lagomorphs (4 % / 7 %). Charadriiformes (including waders) comprised 3–12 % of prey remains throughout the year. Telemetry data and spotlight counts indicated that foxes did not select areas with high densities of breeding waders, suggesting that foxes did...

  5. When things go wrong: Cysticercus longicollis in an adult wild red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konjević, Dean; Živičnjak, Tatjana; Kurilj, Andrea Gudan; Sindičić, Magda; Martinković, Franjo; Jan, Dagny Stojčević

    2016-03-01

    First case of Cysticercus longicollis, larval stage of Taenia crassiceps, was diagnosed in a wild adult male red fox (Vulpes vulpes). The fox was killed by dogs at Nature Park Medvednica and presented to the University of Zagreb Faculty of Veterinary Medicine with history of being unable to run away and having skin lesions on legs that resembled to those of mange. Necropsy revealed whitish fluctuant mass full of cysticercus-like structures, surrounded by fibrous capsule and placed between the leg muscles, and numerous of spherical cysts in the subcutis and in the peritoneal cavity. Cysticerci were identified as C. longicollis based on their size, number and size of the rostellar hooks, mode of proliferation and DNA analysis. To our knowledge, this is the first case of T. crassiceps cysticercosis in a wild carnivore.

  6. Anesthetic management of a 4-month-old red fox (Vulpes vulpes) for orthopedic surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anagnostou, Tilemahos; Flouraki, Eugenia; Kostakis, Charalampos; Komnenou, Anastasia; Prassinos, Nikitas; Raptopoulos, Dimitrios

    2015-03-01

    A 4-mo-old red fox (Vulpes vulpes) was found recumbent after a vehicular accident. Radiology revealed several limb fractures and the fox underwent surgery after 24 hr of initial stabilization. Premedication consisted of dexmedetomidine and morphine. Anesthesia was induced with ketamine and midazolam and maintained with isoflurane. Lidocaine, bupivacaine, and morphine were administered epidurally and further analgesia was provided with meloxicam. The heart rate and respiratory rate of the fox remained stable during surgery and, except for a mild hypothermia, the recovery from anesthesia was uneventful. The postoperative pain scores were low and the animal was transported to a rehabilitation facility and eventually released to the wild. The low pain scores postoperatively should be attributed to the successful application of epidural anesthesia and analgesia.

  7. Unilateral laparoscopic ovariectomy in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with an ovarian cyst.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Seung Y; Jung, Dong H; Park, Se J; Seek, Seong H; Yang, Jeong J; Lee, Jae W; Lee, Bae K; Lee, Hee C; Yeon, Seong C

    2014-09-01

    Unilateral laparoscopic ovariectomy was attempted in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with an ovarian cyst through single portal access. The ovarian cyst was resistant to conservative therapy using gonadotropin-releasing hormone. A 10-mm laparoscope with an operating channel was introduced into the abdomen via a 12-mm umbilical portal. The left ovary and cyst (34.1 x 30.8 mm) were fixed to the left abdominal wall by a transabdominal suspension suture. The ovarian pedicles and ligaments were progressively cauterized and transected with a multifunction bipolar electrocoagulation forceps. The resected cystic ovary was exteriorized through the umbilical portal site. The surgical time was 42 min, and no intra- and postoperative complications were encountered. Two months after the surgery mating was observed, and the fox gave birth to three healthy cubs 56 days after the mating. This is the first report of using laparoscopy in the red fox with an ovarian cyst.

  8. Screening for infection of Trichinella in red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Enemark, Heidi L.; Bjørn, H.; Henriksen, S.A.

    2000-01-01

    A total of 6141 foxes (Vulpes vulpes) were examined for infection with Trichinella. The foxes were killed in Denmark during the hunting season 1995-1996 and 1997-1998; 3133 and 3008, respectively, Foxes included in the investigation came from throughout the country with the exception of the island...... of Bornholm. The right foreleg from each fox was submitted for investigation. The legs were stored at -20 degrees C for 3-10 months prior to examination. Following thawing, muscle tissue (10 g) from each leg was examined by trichinoscopy and by a pepsin-HCl digestion technique. In 1995-1996, three foxes were...... found positive corresponding to a prevalence of 0.001. Each of the infected foxes harboured an extremely low infection, i.e, about one larva per 10 g muscle tissue. It was not possible to obtain sufficient larval material for species identification, All three foxes were shot in the vicinity of a small...

  9. First report of Angiostrongylus vasorum in a wild red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Apulia (Italy).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passantino, Giuseppe; Marino, Fabio; Gaglio, Gabriella; Patruno, Rosa; Lanteri, Giovanni; Zizzo, Nicola

    2017-04-05

    Severe lung strongylosis was detected in a wild red fox (Vulpes vulpes) (1/12) from Apulia (Italy). We performed routine diagnostics on 12 foxes found dead in Apulia. Eleven of them showed lesions consistent with a vehicle collision. However, the remaining fox appeared to have died from other causes. At necropsy we observed, catarrhal enteritis, fatty liver, lung congestion with some areas rm in consistence and brain haemorrhages and malacia. Histopathology revealed lung brosis with mononucleate cells in ltration, thrombosis a several larval nematodes spread in the parenchyma, interstitial nephritis, interstitial myocarditis, encephalitis, encephalomalacia, and a brain granuloma. The larvae recovered from the lung parenchyma were identi ed as the rst stage larvae of Angiostrongylus vasorum. This is the rst documented report of angiostrongylosis in a fox in Southern Italy.

  10. Dioctophyme renale in Vulpes vulpes from the Caspian Sea littoral of Iran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hajialilo, Elham; Mobedi, Iraj; Masoud, Jafar; Hasanpour, Hamid; Mowlavi, Gholamreza

    2015-05-01

    During a long term of road survey for detection of the zoonotic helminthes in carnivores, a male Vulpes vulpes was naturally found infected by Dioctophyme renale in Caspian Sea littoral in Iran. Since the parasite transmission usually occurs through consumption of fish and other accidental food items, investigation of the worm amongst fish-eating animals in the areas with potential circulation of the helminth life cycle, has been regarded as a public health importance so far. Concerning the rout of parasite transmission to humans, different epidemiological aspects should be studied in the country. Present paper describes a destructive lesion of the kidney in the fox due to D. renale after almost a decade of monitoring for the parasite reservoirs in the region.

  11. Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) bioindicator of lead and copper pollution in Sicily (Italy).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naccari, C; Giangrosso, G; Macaluso, A; Billone, E; Cicero, A; D'Ascenzi, C; Ferrantelli, V

    2013-04-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate Pb and Cu accumulation in muscle and skin samples of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Sicily, for monitoring of environmental metals pollution. Metals determination, carried out by atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS), showed the presence of Pb and Cu in all samples analyzed. Pb concentrations were similar in muscle (0.04±0.009 mg/kg) and skin (0.03±0.004 mg/kg) samples, while Cu levels resulted higher in muscle (1.842±0.178 mg/kg) than in skin (1.22±0.151 mg/kg). In addition, a comparative analysis of Pb and Cu concentrations was carried out among samples from different areas of Sicily and between female and male, young and old, immature and mature foxes. Metals content found in all muscle and skin samples demonstrates that V. vulpes could be a valid "sentinel" species of rural and suburban areas to study the environmental metals pollution and the habitat quality. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. On the daily activity of the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes in two village areas of Bulgaria: a case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GEORGI DUDIN

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The study was carried out by digital camera traps in two village areas of South Bulgaria. Total of 99 photos of Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes were made in the villages of Byaga and Isperihovo. They were compared with 1133 photos made in “Sinite Kamani” Nature Park (published by Georgiev et al., 2015. It was evident that there was no any activity during daylight in the villages studied, compared with the natural habitats.

  13. The first report of Hepatozoon canis identified in Vulpes vulpes and ticks from Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabrielli, Simona; Kumlien, Susanna; Calderini, Pietro; Brozzi, Alberto; Iori, Albertina; Cancrini, Gabriella

    2010-11-01

    This is the first report on the presence of Hepatozoon canis in Vulpes vulpes in Italy. During the years 2005 and 2006, a total of 119 foxes were collected and their spleen tissues were screened by microscopy, polymerase chain reaction, and sequencing. In the same area, 290 ticks were picked off from dogs or collected from the environment. Microscopy detected inclusion bodies regarded as belonging to the genus Hepatozoon in four samples, whereas molecular diagnostics evidenced 16 foxes (13.4%) and 6 ticks (2.1%) positive to H. canis. The H. canis isolates we found in foxes, compared with the strains we previously detected in dogs from the same area and with the strains found in foxes from other European countries, show a certain genetic heterogeneity. In fact, seven isolates cluster with the Italian dog strain and nine isolates cluster with the fox strain found in Spain and Slovakia; moreover, the dog's strain is closely related to one tick's isolate, and the strain found in three Rhipicephalus sanguineus and in one Ixodes ricinus collected from the environment cluster with the aforementioned Spanish and Slovak fox strains. Our findings confirm the importance of R. sanguineus as final host and suggest that I. ricinus might also be implicated in parasite transmission, explaining in that way the occurrence of hepatozoonosis in areas considered R. sanguineus-free. The peridomestic habits of V. vulpes and the increasing global temperature are expected to amplify the impact of this vector-borne disease and to enforce the transmission of Hepatozoon to domestic animals.

  14. Is the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) a competent definitive host for Taenia multiceps?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varcasia, Antonio; Tamponi, Claudia; Tosciri, Gabriele; Pipia, Anna Paola; Dore, Francesco; Schuster, Rolf Karl; Kandil, Omnia Mohamed; Manunta, Maria Lucia; Scala, Antonio

    2015-09-25

    Shepherd and stray dogs are thought to represent the primary definitive hosts of Coenurosis by Taenia multiceps, due to their feeding habits which translate into high chances of coming into contact with infected intermediate hosts. Nonetheless, little attention has been paid to the role of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in the epidemiology of coenurosis. In fact a knowledge gap exists on the role played by red foxes in the epidemiology of Taenia multiceps and the capability of this parasite to produce fertile and viable eggs in this wild canid, i.e. on the occurrence of a sylvatic cycle. This study investigates the role of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in the epidemiology of T. multiceps and related metacestodoses. The small intestine of 63 red foxes was macroscopically examined for the presence of cestodes. Adult parasites were identified morphologically as being T. multiceps. Tapeworm eggs were counted and stored at 4 °C in physiological saline solution prior to experimental infection of four sheep and one goat. Sheep were inoculated orally on Day 0 with 3000 (sheep 1), 5000 (sheep 2 and 3) or 7000 eggs (sheep 4), while the goat was infected with 5000 eggs of T. multiceps. The animals were followed-up regularly by MRI and underwent surgical treatment between days 180 to day 240 post infection. Collected coenuri were identified using morphological and molecular methods. A total of 6.3 % of red foxes were found infected with T. multiceps and the eggs obtained from the worms were determined to have a viability of 45.4 %. Two of the challenged sheep and the goat developed disease compatible with T. multiceps. Morphometrical features of the cysts were consistent with those of T. multiceps; nucleotide amplification and sequencing of mitochondrial genes (i.e., cox1 and Nd1) from the metacestode material confirmed the identification. The present study is the first to provide evidence of the role of the red fox as a competent definitive host for T. multiceps, thus changing

  15. Genetically distinct isolates of Spirocerca sp. from a naturally infected red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Denmark.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Hansen, Mette Sif; Chriél, Mariann; Holm, Elisabeth; Larsen, Gitte; Enemark, Heidi Larsen

    2014-09-15

    Spirocerca lupi causes formation of nodules that may transform into sarcoma in the walls of aorta, esophagus and stomach of infected canids. In February 2013, post mortem examination of a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) hunted in Denmark revealed the presence of several nodules containing adult worms of Spirocerca sp. in the stomach and the omentum. The nodules largely consisted of fibrous tissue with infiltration of mononuclear cells, neutrophilic granulocytes and macrophages with hemosiderin deposition. Parasitological examination by three copromicroscopic methods, sedimentation, flotation with saturated sugar-salt solution, and sieving failed to detect eggs of Spirocerca sp. in feces collected from the colon. This is the first report of spirocercosis in Denmark, and may have been caused by a recent introduction by migrating paratenic or definitive host. Analysis of two overlapping partial sequences of the cox1 gene, from individual worms, revealed distinct genetic variation (7-9%) between the Danish worms and isolates of S. lupi from Europe, Asia and Africa. This was confirmed by phylogenetic analysis that clearly separated the Danish worms from other isolates of S. lupi. The distinct genetic differences of the current worms compared to other isolates of S. lupi may suggest the presence of a cryptic species within Spirocerca. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Sarcoptic mange and other ectoparasitic infections in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes population from central Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Perrucci

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Fifty red foxes (Vulpes vulpes from the district of Pisa (central Italy were examined for ectoparasites. Sarcoptic mange was diagnosed on the presence of clearly visible skin lesions with confirmatory demonstration of Sarcoptes scabiei at parasitological and histopathological analysis. Ticks and fleas were collected directly from the carcases during post mortem examination, fixed and identified by morphological examination. For the detection of ear Malassezia and mite infections, cytological and parasitological examinations of ear wax samples were performed. All data were statistically analysed using a χ2 test with the Yates correction. An overall prevalence of 84% for ectoparasitic infections was found in examined subjects. In regard to isolated ectoparasites, 38%, 8%, 82%, 6% and 8% of foxes resulted positive for S. scabiei, Otodectes cynotis, Malassezia spp., fleas (Archaeopsylla erinacei, Pulex irritans, Ctenocephalides canis and ticks (Ixodes ricinus and Rhipicephalus sanguineus, respectively. Malassezia ear infection was significantly more prevalent in animals older than 1 year (P < 0.01. Prevalence (38%, severity of lesions and poor body conditions observed in most Sarcoptes-infected animals indicate that sarcoptic mange should be considered the most important ectoparasitic infection of red foxes in the examined area.

  17. Babesia (Theileria) annae in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Prince Edward Island, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clancey, Noel; Horney, Barbara; Burton, Shelley; Birkenheuer, Adam; McBurney, Scott; Tefft, Karen

    2010-04-01

    A 4-6-mo-old female red fox (Vulpes vulpes) was presented to the Atlantic Veterinary College (AVC) Teaching Hospital, Prince Edward Island, Canada. On presentation, the fox was weak and had pale mucous membranes. A complete blood count and a serum biochemistry profile were performed. Blood smear examination revealed low numbers of erythrocytes containing centrally to paracentrally located, single, rarely multiple, approximately 1 x 2 microm, oval to round organisms with morphology similar to Babesia microti. Polymerase chain reaction testing and DNA sequencing of the Babesia species 18S rRNA gene were performed on DNA extracted from whole blood. Results were positive for a Babesia microti-like parasite genetically identical to Babesia (Theileria) annae. The fox was euthanized due to poor prognosis for recovery. Necropsy examination revealed multifocal to locally extensive subacute nonsuppurative meningoencephalitis, an eosinophilic broncho-pneumonia, a moderate diffuse vacuolar hepatopathy, and lesions associated with blunt trauma to the left abdominal region. This is the first reported case of a red fox in Canada infected with a piroplasm. It remains uncertain whether the presence of this hemoparasite in this fox was pathogenic or an incidental finding. The potential for competent vectors of Babesia species on Prince Edward Island, the potential for this Babesia microti-like parasite to infect other wild and domestic canids, and the significance of this parasite to the health of infected individuals are yet to be determined.

  18. Temporal genetic variation of the red fox, Vulpes vulpes, across western Europe and the British Isles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Ceiridwen J.; Soulsbury, Carl D.; Statham, Mark J.; Ho, Simon Y. W.; Wall, Dave; Dolf, Gaudenz; Iossa, Graziella; Baker, Phillip J.; Harris, Stephen; Sacks, Benjamin N.; Bradley, Daniel G.

    2012-12-01

    Quaternary climatic fluctuations have had profound effects on the phylogeographic structure of many species. Classically, species were thought to have become isolated in peninsular refugia, but there is limited evidence that large, non-polar species survived outside traditional refugial areas. We examined the phylogeographic structure of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), a species that shows high ecological adaptability in the western Palaearctic region. We compared mitochondrial DNA sequences (cytochrome b and control region) from 399 modern and 31 ancient individuals from across Europe. Our objective was to test whether red foxes colonised the British Isles from mainland Europe in the late Pleistocene, or whether there is evidence that they persisted in the region through the Last Glacial Maximum. We found red foxes to show a high degree of phylogeographic structuring across Europe and, consistent with palaeontological and ancient DNA evidence, confirmed via phylogenetic indicators that red foxes were persistent in areas outside peninsular refugia during the last ice age. Bayesian analyses and tests of neutrality indicated population expansion. We conclude that there is evidence that red foxes from the British Isles derived from central European populations that became isolated after the closure of the landbridge with Europe.

  19. Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) as a potential reservoir host of cardiorespiratory parasites in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodžić, Adnan; Alić, Amer; Klebić, Ismar; Kadrić, Mirsad; Brianti, Emanuele; Duscher, Georg Gerhard

    2016-06-15

    Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is considered as reservoir of different cardiorespiratory parasites of veterinary and medical importance. Since data on cardiorespiratory parasites in foxes in Bosnia and Herzegovina are still lacking, the aims of the present study were to (i) investigate the prevalence and geographical distribution of these parasites, (ii) determine genetic diversity of detected parasite species, and (iii) to estimate the role of foxes in the transmission cycle to companion animals and humans. Four species, morphologically and molecularly identified as Eucoleus boehmi (64.6%; 51/79), Eucoleus aerophilus (69.7%; 154/221), Crenosoma vulpis (45.7%; 101/221) and Linguatula serrata (1.3%; 1/79) were retrieved from nasal cavity and lungs in 184 (83.3%) animals. The occurrence of heartworms, Angiostrongylus vasorum and Dirofilaria immitis was not detected by necropsy or PCR. Furthermore, three distinct haplotypes of E. aerophilus (I, III, XV) and two of C. vulpis (I, II) previously reported in pet animals and wild carnivores were confirmed in this study. A new haplotype of C. vulpis (designated as haplotype V) was also identified based on 12S rRNA gene for the first time. The present study indicates a high prevalence and wide distribution of nasal and lung nematodes in fox population in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and supports the existence of transmission patterns between wildlife and pet animals. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Molecular detection of Theileria annae and Hepatozoon canis in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Croatia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dezdek, Danko; Vojta, Lea; Curković, Snjezana; Lipej, Zoran; Mihaljević, Zeljko; Cvetnić, Zeljko; Beck, Relja

    2010-09-20

    An epizootiological field study on tick-borne protozoan infections in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) was carried out in different parts of Croatia. Spleen samples of 191 carcasses of red foxes killed in sanitary hunting, were examined for the presence of hematozoa by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and subsequent sequencing. The investigation revealed four species of hematozoa in 57 foxes (30%), namely Theileria annae, Theileria sp. 3182/05 and Hepatozoon canis. T. annae was found in 10 foxes (5%), Theileria sp. 3182/05 in a single animal (1%), H. canis in 44 (23%) and Hepatozoon sp. was detected in two foxes (1%). T. annae and H. canis were distributed through all the studied regions, while Theileria sp. 3182/05 and Hepatozoon sp. were restricted to the Zagreb and Zagorje, and Istria regions, respectively. Detection of T. annae in all regions of Croatia indicates the presence of the natural cycle of the parasite and raises the possibility of other vectors other than the proposed Ixodes hexagonus.

  1. Infectivity and temperature tolerance of non-encapsulating Trichinella zimbabwensis in experimentally infected red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hurníková, Z.; Dubinský, P.; Mukaratirwa, S.

    2004-01-01

    The non-encapsulating Trichinella zimbabwensis was evaluated for infectivity in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), the larval distribution and cold tolerance in fox muscle tissue. Six red foxes were experimentally infected with T. zimbabwensis larvae. Five weeks after inoculation, muscle larvae were...... recovered from 9 different muscle types using artificial digestion method. The establishment of infection in all infected red foxes demonstrated the ability of T. zimbabwensis to complete its life cycle in a carnivore mammal host. The larvae recovered from fox muscle tissue were infective to mice, they have...

  2. The diet of feral raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) and native badger (Meles meles) and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Elmeros, Morten; Mikkelsen, Dorthe Malene Götz; Nørgaard, Louise Solveig

    2018-01-01

    The raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) is an East Asian Canid that has been introduced in Europe. Introduction of alien species is an increasing conservation issue. We examined the diet of a recently established raccoon dog population in Denmark by analysing stomach content in 249 carcasses...... collected in 2008–2016. Raccoon dog diet was compared to the diet of native badger (Meles meles) and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark. The most common food for raccoon dogs were invertebrates (frequency of occurrence, FO 69%), small mammals (FO 68%), birds (FO 41%), fruits (FO 38%), amphibians (FO 36...

  3. Mother knows best: dominant females determine offspring dispersal in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen M Whiteside

    Full Text Available Relatedness between group members is central to understanding the causes of animal dispersal. In many group-living mammals this can be complicated as extra-pair copulations result in offspring having varying levels of relatedness to the dominant animals, leading to a potential conflict between male and female dominants over offspring dispersal strategies. To avoid resource competition and inbreeding, dominant males might be expected to evict unrelated males and related females, whereas the reverse strategy would be expected for dominant females.We used microsatellites and long-term data from an urban fox (Vulpes vulpes population to compare dispersal strategies between offspring with intra- and extra-group fathers and mothers of differing social status in red foxes. Relatedness to the dominant male had no effect on dispersal in offspring of either sex, whereas there was a strong effect of relatedness to resident females on offspring dispersal independent of population density. Males with dominant mothers dispersed significantly more often than males with subordinate mothers, whereas dispersing females were significantly more likely to have subordinate mothers compared to philopatric females.This is the first study to demonstrate that relatedness to resident females is important in juvenile dispersal in group-living mammals. Male dispersal may be driven by inbreeding avoidance, whereas female dispersal appears to be influenced by the fitness advantages associated with residing with the same-sex dominant parent. Selection pressure for paternal influence on offspring dispersal is low due to the limited costs associated with retaining unrelated males and the need for alternative inbreeding avoidance mechanisms between the dominant male and his female offspring. These findings have important implications for the evolution of dispersal and group living in social mammals, and our understanding of a key biological process.

  4. Multiple-strain Trichophyton mentagrophytes infection in a silver fox (Vulpes vulpes) from a breeding farm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gnat, Sebastian; Nowakiewicz, Aneta; Lagowski, Dominik; Troscianczyk, Aleksandra; Zieba, Przemyslaw

    2018-03-08

    Dermatophyte infections are extremely frequent worldwide, and their epidemiological features and distribution make them one of the most frequent infections all over the world. We identified and analysed multiform T. mentagrophytes strains isolated from a silver fox (Vulpes vulpes) kept on a breeding farm. Identification of dermatophyte strains was carried out traditionally by correlating both the clinical manifestations of the infection with a micro- and macroscopic examination. To confirm the species affiliation fully, molecular differentiation methods were used. DNA was isolated from the dermatophytes with the phenol-chloroform method. The reaction of chitin synthase 1 (chs1) amplification was carried out to confirm the dermatophytes. The phylogenetic analysis was based on the ITS sequences. The polymerase chain reaction melting profile (PCR-MP) procedure was used for differentiation of dermatophyte genomes. Direct analysis of the material sampled from the clinical lesions revealed the presence of arthrospores in the samples collected from all animals with skin lesions. The macromorphology of the colonies obtained from material sampled from the same individual was not homogeneous. The PCR-MP electrophoregram indicated high variability of their genomes. Although the dermatophytes were isolated from one infected fox, no two identical genomic profiles were obtained. The PCR-MP result corresponds with the phenotypic diversity of the isolates. The findings about the multiple dermatophyte infection in one individual complicate any future epidemiology work and other clinical investigation. Previously, using only morphological characteristics, it had been assumed that one fungal isolate per patient could be diagnosed. The novel findings encourage application of the newly developed molecular typing methods in the diagnosis of dermatophytosis.

  5. Spatial distribution of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Hepatozoon canis in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Hungary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolnai, Z; Sréter-Lancz, Z; Sréter, T

    2015-07-01

    In recent years, Ehrlichia canis and Hepatozoon canis transmitted by Rhipicephalus sanguineus were reported from Hungary. The aim of the present study was to reveal the spatial distribution pattern of pathogens transmitted by R. sanguineus in a sentinel species, red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Hungary and to analyse the relationship of these patterns with landscape and climate by geographical information systems. Fox carcasses, representing 0.5% of the total fox population were randomly selected out of all the foxes of Hungary. The spleen samples of the animals were tested by real-time PCR for Anaplasma platys, Babesia vogeli, E. canis and H. canis infection. Positive results were confirmed by conventional PCR followed by sequencing. The prevalence of H. canis infection was 22.2% (95% CI=18.4-26.4%), and this parasite was detected in all areas including the mountain regions of Hungary. These findings indicate that other tick species or other transmission routes (oral and transplacental) might be in the background of the countrywide distribution of H. canis. Anaplasma platys was not found; nevertheless, the prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection transmitted by Ixodes ricinus was 12.5% (95% CI=9.7-16.1%) in foxes. B. vogeli and E. canis infection was not detected. There was no correlation between environmental parameter values in the home range of foxes and A. phagocytophilum or H. canis infection, which is in line with that observed in the case of tick species infesting foxes in Hungary. The results of this study indicate that R. sanguineus, if present, might be rare in Hungary. Our baseline study can be used for future evaluation of the effect of climate change on the spreading and emergence of R. sanguineus transmitted pathogens in Hungary. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  6. Molecular and histopathological detection of Hepatozoon canis in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) from Portugal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Luís; Cortes, Helder C E; Eyal, Osnat; Reis, Antónia; Lopes, Ana Patrícia; Vila-Viçosa, Maria João; Rodrigues, Paula A; Baneth, Gad

    2014-03-24

    Hepatozoon canis is a protozoan tick-borne pathogen of dogs and wild canids. Hepatozoon spp. have been reported to infect foxes in different continents and recent studies have mostly used the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the detection and characterization of the infecting species. Surveying red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) may contribute to better understanding the epidemiology of canine vector-borne diseases, including hepatozoonosis caused by H. canis in domestic dogs. The present study investigated the prevalence of Hepatozoon spp. by means of histopathology and molecular analysis of different tissues in red foxes from different parts of Portugal. Blood and tissues including bone marrow, heart, hind leg muscle, jejunum, kidney, liver, lung, popliteal or axillary lymph nodes, spleen and/or tongue were collected from 91 red foxes from eight districts in northern, central and southern Portugal. Tissues were formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded, cut and stained with hematoxylin and eosin. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplified a ~650 bp fragment of the 18S rRNA gene of Hepatozoon spp. and the DNA products were sequenced. Hepatozoon canis was detected in 68 out of 90 foxes (75.6%) from all the sampled areas by PCR and sequencing. Histopathology revealed H. canis meronts similar in shape to those found in dogs in the bone marrow of 11 (23.4%) and in the spleen of two (4.3%) out of 47 foxes (p = 0.007). All the 11 foxes found positive by histopathology were also positive by PCR of bone marrow and/or blood. Positivity by PCR (83.0%) was significantly higher (p Hepatozoon canis was found to be highly prevalent in red fox populations from northern, central and southern Portugal. Detection of the parasite by histopathology was significantly less sensitive than by PCR. Red foxes are a presumptive reservoir of H. canis infection for domestic dogs.

  7. Lipids of the Tail Gland, Body and Muzzle Fur of the Red Fox, Vulpes vulpes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLean, Stuart; Davies, Noel W; Nichols, David S

    2017-07-01

    The tail gland of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) secretes lipids containing volatile terpenes used in social communication. We have analysed lipids extracted from fur of the tail gland, body (flanks) and muzzle of foxes. GC-MS showed a novel group of iso-valerate and tiglate monoesters of alkane-1,2-diols (C18:0-22:0). There was also a larger group of Type II diesters in which a second, longer chain, fatty acid (FA) was attached to the free alcohol group. LC-MS showed the full range of diol diesters, mostly C36:0-50:0, with smaller amounts of the corresponding mono-unsaturated tiglate esters. An additional group of diesters with higher MW (C49:0-62:0) containing two long-chain FA was present in the lipids of body and muzzle fur. After saponification and GC-MS, 98 fatty acids were characterized as their methyl esters. Apart from the C5 FA, most were saturated n-, iso-, anteiso- or other methyl-branched FA (C12:0-28:0) whose structures were determined by a combination of their mass spectra and Kovats retention indices. Several FA have not previously been found in nature or in vertebrates. Thirty-four alkane-1,2-diols were found as their TMS derivatives, mostly n-, iso- or anteiso-isomers of C16:0-25:0. The tail gland had the greatest amount of wax esters, from a greater variety of FA and diols, but lacked the esters with two long-chain FA. These findings show that fox skin lipids comprise mono- and di-esters of alkane-1,2-diols, and exhibit enormous complexity due to the diversity of their constituent FA, diols and the many possible isomers of their esters.

  8. Diversity of Flea (Siphonaptera) Parasites on Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Romania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foley, P; Foley, J; Sándor, A D; Ionica, A M; Matei, I A; D'Amico, G; Gherman, C M; Dom A, C; Mihalca, A D

    2017-09-01

    Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes (L.)) are widespread across Europe, tolerant of synanthropic ecosystems, and susceptible to diseases potentially shared with humans and other animals. We describe flea fauna on red foxes in Romania, a large, ecologically diverse country, in part because fleas may serve as an indicator of the risk of spillover of vector-borne disease. We found 912 individual fleas of seven species on the 305 foxes assessed, for an infestation prevalence of 49.5%. Mean flea load per fox was 5.8 (range 0-44 fleas), and flea detections were most abundant in fall and early spring. Fleas included generalists (Ctenocephalides canis (Curtis), 32.6% of all fleas), Ct. felis (Bouché, 0.1%), and Pulex irritans L. (29.9%), the fox specialist Chaetopsylla globiceps (Taschenberg, 32.5%), mesocarnivore fleas Paraceras melis Walker (3.2%) and Ch. trichosa Kohaut (1.5%), and the small mammal flea Ctenophthalmus assimilis (Taschenberg, 0.1%), which is rarely or never reported from carnivores. There were significantly more female than male Ch. globiceps, Ct. canis, and Pu. irritans, and these three species were the most broadly distributed geographically. Diversity indices suggested reduced diversity in mountainous areas above 700 m. When compared to other flea studies on foxes in Europe, Romania had flea diversity near the median of reports, which was unexpected given Romania's high ecological diversity. Notably absent prey specialists, compared to other studies, include Archaeopsylla erinacei (Bouché) and Spilopsyllus cuniculi (Dale). Further studies of possible disease agents in fox fleas could help elucidate possible risks of vector-borne disease in foxes, domestic animals, and humans as well. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Brucella vulpis sp. nov., isolated from mandibular lymph nodes of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholz, Holger C; Revilla-Fernández, Sandra; Al Dahouk, Sascha; Hammerl, Jens A; Zygmunt, Michel S; Cloeckaert, Axel; Koylass, Mark; Whatmore, Adrian M; Blom, Jochen; Vergnaud, Gilles; Witte, Angela; Aistleitner, Karin; Hofer, Erwin

    2016-05-01

    Two slow-growing, Gram-negative, non-motile, non-spore-forming, coccoid bacteria (strains F60T and F965), isolated in Austria from mandibular lymph nodes of two red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), were subjected to a polyphasic taxonomic analysis. In a recent study, both isolates were assigned to the genus Brucella but could not be attributed to any of the existing species. Hence, we have analysed both strains in further detail to determine their exact taxonomic position and genetic relatedness to other members of the genus Brucella. The genome sizes of F60T and F965 were 3 236 779 and 3 237 765 bp, respectively. Each genome consisted of two chromosomes, with a DNA G+C content of 57.2 %. A genome-to-genome distance of >80 %, an average nucleotide identity (ANI) of 97 % and an average amino acid identity (AAI) of 98 % compared with the type species Brucella melitensis confirmed affiliation to the genus. Remarkably, 5 % of the entire genetic information of both strains was of non-Brucella origin, including as-yet uncharacterized bacteriophages and insertion sequences as well as ABC transporters and other genes of metabolic function from various soil-living bacteria. Core-genome-based phylogenetic reconstructions placed the novel species well separated from all hitherto-described species of the genus Brucella, forming a long-branched sister clade to the classical species of Brucella. In summary, based on phenotypic and molecular data, we conclude that strains F60T and F965 are members of a novel species of the genus Brucella, for which the name Brucella vulpis sp. nov. is proposed, with the type strain F60T ( = BCCN 09-2T = DSM 101715T).

  10. Mother knows best: dominant females determine offspring dispersal in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiteside, Helen M; Dawson, Deborah A; Soulsbury, Carl D; Harris, Stephen

    2011-01-01

    Relatedness between group members is central to understanding the causes of animal dispersal. In many group-living mammals this can be complicated as extra-pair copulations result in offspring having varying levels of relatedness to the dominant animals, leading to a potential conflict between male and female dominants over offspring dispersal strategies. To avoid resource competition and inbreeding, dominant males might be expected to evict unrelated males and related females, whereas the reverse strategy would be expected for dominant females. We used microsatellites and long-term data from an urban fox (Vulpes vulpes) population to compare dispersal strategies between offspring with intra- and extra-group fathers and mothers of differing social status in red foxes. Relatedness to the dominant male had no effect on dispersal in offspring of either sex, whereas there was a strong effect of relatedness to resident females on offspring dispersal independent of population density. Males with dominant mothers dispersed significantly more often than males with subordinate mothers, whereas dispersing females were significantly more likely to have subordinate mothers compared to philopatric females. This is the first study to demonstrate that relatedness to resident females is important in juvenile dispersal in group-living mammals. Male dispersal may be driven by inbreeding avoidance, whereas female dispersal appears to be influenced by the fitness advantages associated with residing with the same-sex dominant parent. Selection pressure for paternal influence on offspring dispersal is low due to the limited costs associated with retaining unrelated males and the need for alternative inbreeding avoidance mechanisms between the dominant male and his female offspring. These findings have important implications for the evolution of dispersal and group living in social mammals, and our understanding of a key biological process.

  11. Complete mitochondrial genome of the fennec fox (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiufeng; Zhao, Chao; Zhang, Honghai; Zhang, Jin; Chen, Lei; Sha, Weilai; Liu, Guangshuai

    2016-01-01

    In this study, the complete mitochondrial genome of the fennec fox (Vulpes zerda) was sequenced using blood samples obtained from a female individual in Shanghai wildlife Park. Sequence analysis showed that the content of T (26.7%) in total composition was no more than C (27.2%), which is different from most of Canide individuals sequenced previously.

  12. Diet of the Red fox (Vulpes vulpes in the Sibillini area (Central Apennines / Dieta della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes nell'area dei Monti Sibillini (Appennino centrale

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo Boldreghini

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The Authors analyse the contents of 401 stomachs of foxes Vulpes vulpes (135 of which were empty collected during the period 1971-74 in a mixed agriculture-pasture-woodland area. The frequency of occurrence of the following food categories was found: 1. Small Vertebrates (mainly rodents 72.6%; 2. Medium-sized Vertebrates (prevalently hares, domestic rabbits and domestic fowl 13.5%; 3. Invertebrates (mainly Orthoptera 7.9%; 4. Fruits: 24.8%; 5. Garbage and carrions 62.0%; 6. Grass and leaves 38.7%; 7. Unidentified material 5.6%. Small Vertebrates, Garbage and carrions, and Fruits showed highly significant seasonal variation. Garbage was found to be eaten more frequently than in any other European country. Riassunto Viene analizzato il contenuto di 401 stomaci di Volpe Vulpes vulpes (di cui 135 vuoti raccolti nel periodo 1971-74 nelle province di Ascoli Piceno e Macerata. Le categorie alimentari più frequenti sono i piccoli Vertebrati (Roditori in prevalenza, i rifiuti e carogne, e i frutti; solo queste categorie mostrano variazioni stagionali significative. I1 consumo di carogne e rifiuti è più elevato rispetto a quello registrato in altri paesi europei.

  13. Winter food of the fox Vulpes vulpes in the Province of Cuneo (North-Western Italy / Alimentazione invernale della Volpe Vulpes vulpes nell'Albese (Provincia di Cuneo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo Debernardi

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The diet of the Fox Vulpes vulpes was studied by the analysis of 157 gastric contents coming from hilly areas of the Province of Cuneo. Samples were gathered during January-March of the years '86 (N. 41, '87 (N. 72 and '88 (N. 44. The mean percentage of frequency was determined for the following feeding categories: Fruits (26.1%, Other vegetable components (19.7%, Insects (2.5%, Wild birds (11.5%, Insectivores and Rodents (42.7%, Lepus capensis (13.4%, Indeterminate Lagomorphs (17.2%, Domestic animals (59.2% and Other (2.5%. The diet is analysed in relation to some available trophic resources (dumps, restoking of hares and of pheasants. Riassunto Vengono presentati i dati dell'analisi di 157 contenuti gastrici di Vulpes vulpes, provenienti da aree collinari della provincia di Cuneo; i campioni si riferiscono ai primi tre mesi delle annate '86 (N. 41, '87 (N. 72 e '88 (N. 44. Sono state determinate le frequenze percentuali delle seguenti categorie alimentari: Frutti (26,1%, Altre componenti vegetali (19,7%, Insetti (2,5%, Uccelli selvatici (11,5%, Insettivori e Roditori (42,7%, Lepus capensis (13,4%, Lagomorfi indeterminati (17,2%, Animali domestici (59,2% e Altro (2,5%. La dieta viene esaminata in relazione ad alcuni aspetti legati alle disponibilità trofiche del territorio (presenza di discariche, ripopolamenti di selvaggina.

  14. A comparative study of helminths of raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procynoides and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes sharing the same territory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rolf Karl Schuster

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To compare the helminth fauna of raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procynoides and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes originating from the Uckermark distict, a rural area in the northeastern part of Germany. Methods: Internal organs of 101 legally hunted raccoon dogs and 144 red foxes were examined for helminths by helminthological dissection. Results: In total, 18 helminth species were detected of which 14 were present in raccoon dogs and 17 were detected in red foxes. In both host species, Mesocestoides litteratus, Uncinaria stenocephala and Toxocara canis occurred in comparably high prevalences. Significant differences in prevalence were seen in Isthmiophora melis and Alaria alata that were more often diagnosed in raccoon dogs and Taenia polyacantha that was more frequent in red foxes. Echinococcus multilocularis was present in both hosts in low prevalence. Conclusions: Both canid hosts sharing the same territories have a similar helminth spectrum. Differences in prevalence and abundance can be explained with distinct.

  15. Variability in body mass and sexual dimorphism in Danish red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in relation to population density

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pagh, Sussie; Hansen, Mette Sif; Jensen, Birger

    2018-01-01

    For the first time, temporal variability in body size and sexual dimorphism is revealed in foxes Vulpes vulpes from the same geographical area at over time. The weights and lengths of 552 Danish foxes were documented during three different periods: 1965–1977, 2012–2014 and the winter of 2015...... of 2012–2014, no difference in body fat measured by rump fat thickness (RFT) was found between age groups and genders in contrast to 2015/2016, when RFT was significantly (p ...–1977 and compared to 2015/2016, compared to 2012–2014, when population density was high (the mean weight: 6.8 kg). However, no significant differences were found in the weight of females. Hence, sexual dimorphism ranged from 7.6 to 3.6 in adult foxes in low and high-density periods, respectively. During the winters...

  16. Vaccine-induced rabies in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes): isolation of vaccine virus in brain tissue and salivary glands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hostnik, Peter; Picard-Meyer, Evelyne; Rihtarič, Danijela; Toplak, Ivan; Cliquet, Florence

    2014-04-01

    Oral vaccination campaigns to eliminate fox rabies were initiated in Slovenia in 1995. In May 2012, a young fox (Vulpes vulpes) with typical rabies signs was captured. Its brain and salivary gland tissues were found to contain vaccine strain SAD B19. The Basic Logical Alignment Search Tool alignment of 589 nucleotides determined from the N gene of the virus isolated from the brain and salivary glands of the affected fox was 100% identical to the GenBank reference SAD B19 strain. Sequence analysis of the N and M genes (4,351 nucleotides) showed two nucleotide modifications at position 1335 (N gene) and 3114 (M gene) in the KC522613 isolate identified in the fox compared to SAD B19.

  17. Plutonium, americium, 90Sr and 137Cs in bones of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Eastern Poland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mietelski, J.W.; Tomankiewicz, E.; Gaca, P.; Blazej, S.; Kitowski, I.

    2008-01-01

    90 Sr, 238,239+240 Pu, 241 Am and 137 Cs activity concentrations are presented in the jaw bones of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from eastern Poland. The short description of the applied radiochemical method is presented. Activity concentrations for 90 Sr ranged between 2.2±0.7 and 41.4±4.7 Bq/kg (aw = ash weight). Average results for plutonium and americium are on the level of 10 mBq/kg (aw). No clear relationship was observed among the radionuclide concentrations. The samples analyzed do not show elevated contamination levels when compared with results of bones of small animals (rodent or insectivorous mammals) determined previously, so no accumulation of bone seeking isotopes on higher step of food-chain is concluded. (author)

  18. Diagnosis and treatment of Neospora caninum--associated dermatitis in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with concurrent Toxoplasma gondii infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duhey, Jitender P; Whitesell, Leah E; Culp, William E; Daye, Sharon

    2014-06-01

    A 3-mo-old red fox (Vulpes vulpes) developed generalized crusty plaques on its body during rehabilitation after an automobile accident requiring amputation of one leg. Histologic examination of skin lesion biopsy revealed granulomatous dermatitits with many intralesional protozoal tachyzoites. The protozoa stained positively with antibodies to Neospora caninum but not to Toxoplasma gondii. Treatment with clindamycin hydrochloride (10 mg/kg, twice daily, s.c.) for 1 mo completely resolved lesions, and protozoa were not demonstrable in biopsy of skin after treatment. The fox had agglutinating antibodies to T. gondii (modified agglutination test, titer 1:3200) and N. caninum (Neospora agglutination test, titer 1:25), and viable T. gondii (genotype III) was isolated from the skin biopsy after treatment. This is the first report of clinical neosporosis in a wild canid.

  19. Echinococcus multilocularis infections of rural, residential and urban foxes (Vulpes vulpes in the canton of Geneva, Switzerland

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    Fischer C.

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available We examined 267 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes from the canton of Geneva, Switzerland, for intestinal infections with Echinococcus multilocularis. This region is situated in the core area of the endemic range of this zoonotic cestode in Central Europe. Several factors were taken into account and urbanisation level appeared to be the most explicative to describe observed differences. The prevalence decreased significantly from rural and residential areas (prevalence of 52 %, CI 43-62 %, and 49 %, CI 38-59 %, respectively to the urban area (prevalence of 31 %, CI 19-42 %. A few juvenile foxes harboured very high burdens up to more than 120,000 worms and were significantly more heavily infected than adults. The intensity of infection decreased from rural and residential areas to the city, suggesting a lower contamination of the urban environment.

  20. Canine adenovirus type 1 in a fennec fox (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Jeong-Won; Lee, Hyun-Kyoung; Kim, Seong-Hee; Kim, Yeon-Hee; Lee, Kyoung-Ki; Lee, Myoung-Heon; Oem, Jae-Ku

    2014-12-01

    A 10-mo-old female fennec fox (Vulpes zerda) with drooling suddenly died and was examined postmortem. Histologic examination of different tissue samples was performed. Vacuolar degeneration and diffuse fatty change were observed in the liver. Several diagnostic methods were used to screen for canine parvovirus, canine distemper virus, canine influenza virus, canine coronavirus, canine parainfluenza virus, and canine adenovirus (CAdV). Only CAdV type 1 (CAdV-1) was detected in several organs (liver, lung, brain, kidney, spleen, and heart), and other viruses were not found. CAdV-1 was confirmed by virus isolation and nucleotide sequencing.

  1. Reclassification of Theileria annae as Babesia vulpes sp. nov.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baneth, Gad; Florin-Christensen, Monica; Cardoso, Luís; Schnittger, Leonhard

    2015-04-08

    Theileria annae is a tick-transmitted small piroplasmid that infects dogs and foxes in North America and Europe. Due to disagreement on its placement in the Theileria or Babesia genera, several synonyms have been used for this parasite, including Babesia Spanish dog isolate, Babesia microti-like, Babesia (Theileria) annae, and Babesia cf. microti. Infections by this parasite cause anemia, thrombocytopenia, and azotemia in dogs but are mostly subclinical in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes). Furthermore, high infection rates have been detected among red fox populations in distant regions strongly suggesting that these canines act as the parasite's natural host. This study aims to reassess and harmonize the phylogenetic placement and binomen of T. annae within the order Piroplasmida. Four molecular phylogenetic trees were constructed using a maximum likelihood algorithm based on DNA alignments of: (i) near-complete 18S rRNA gene sequences (n = 76 and n = 93), (ii) near-complete and incomplete 18S rRNA gene sequences (n = 92), and (iii) tubulin-beta gene sequences (n = 32) from B. microti and B. microti-related parasites including those detected in dogs and foxes. All phylogenetic trees demonstrate that T. annae and its synonyms are not Theileria parasites but are most closely related with B. microti. The phylogenetic tree based on the 18S rRNA gene forms two separate branches with high bootstrap value, of which one branch corresponds to Babesia species infecting rodents, humans, and macaques, while the other corresponds to species exclusively infecting carnivores. Within the carnivore group, T. annae and its synonyms from distant regions segregate into a single clade with a highly significant bootstrap value corroborating their separate species identity. Phylogenetic analysis clearly shows that T. annae and its synonyms do not pertain to Theileria and can be clearly defined as a separate species. Based on the facts that T. annae and its synonyms have not been

  2. Pearsonema (syn Capillaria plica associated cystitis in a Fennoscandian arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus: a case report

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    Osterman-Lind Eva

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The bladderworm Pearsonema (syn Capillaria plica affects domestic dogs and wild carnivores worldwide. A high prevalence in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes has been reported in many European countries. P. plica inhabits the lower urinary tract and is considered to be of low pathogenic significance in dogs mostly causing asymptomatic infections. However, a higher level of pathogenicity has been reported in foxes. A severe cystitis associated with numerous bladderworms was found in a captive arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus originating from the endangered Fennoscandian arctic fox population. To our knowledge this is the first description of P. plica infection in an arctic fox.

  3. Spirocerca vulpis sp. nov. (Spiruridae: Spirocercidae): description of a new nematode species of the red fox, Vulpes vulpes (Carnivora: Canidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas, Alicia; Sanchis-Monsonís, Gloria; Alić, Amer; Hodžić, Adnan; Otranto, Domenico; Yasur-Landau, Daniel; Martínez-Carrasco, Carlos; Baneth, Gad

    2018-05-21

    Previous studies have reported nematodes of the Spirocercidae family in the stomach nodules of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) described as Spirocerca sp. or Spirocerca lupi (Rudolphi, 1819). We characterized spirurid worms collected from red foxes and compared them to S. lupi from domestic dogs by morphometric and phylogenetic analyses. Nematodes from red foxes differed from S. lupi by the presence of six triangular teeth-like buccal capsule structures, which are absent in the latter. Additionally, in female worms from red foxes, the distance of the vulva opening to the anterior end and the ratio of the glandular-to-muscular oesophagus lengths were larger than those of S. lupi (P red foxes spirurid represent monophyletic sister groups with pairwise nucleotide distances of 9.2 and 0.2% in the cytochrome oxidase 1 and 18S genes, respectively. Based on these comparisons, the nematodes from red foxes were considered to belong to a separate species, for which the name Spirocerca vulpis sp. nov. is proposed.

  4. The effects of sex, age, season and habitat on diet of the red fox Vulpes vulpes in northeastern Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kidawa, Dorota; Kowalczyk, Rafał

    2011-07-01

    The diet of the red fox Vulpes vulpes was investigated in five regions of northeastern Poland by stomach content analysis of 224 foxes collected from hunters. The red fox is expected to show the opportunistic feeding habits. Our study showed that foxes preyed mainly on wild prey, with strong domination of Microtus rodents, regardless of sex, age, month and habitat. Voles Microtus spp. were found in 73% of stomachs and constituted 47% of food volume consumed. Other food items were ungulate carrion (27% of volume), other mammals (11%), birds (9%), and plant material (4%). Sex- and age-specific differences in dietary diversity were found. Adult males and juvenile foxes had larger food niche breadths than adult females and their diets highly overlapped. Proportion of Microtus voles increased from autumn to late winter. Significant habitat differences between studied regions were found. There was a tendency among foxes to decrease consumption of voles with increasing percentage of forest cover. Based on our findings, red foxes in northeastern Poland can be recognized as a generalist predators, consuming easily accessible and abundant prey. However, high percentage of voles consumed regardless of age, sex, month, or habitats may indicate red fox specialization in preying on Microtus rodents.

  5. Red fox Vulpes vulpes (L., 1758) as a bioindicator of mercury contamination in terrestrial ecosystems of north-western Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalisinska, Elzbieta; Lisowski, Piotr; Kosik-Bogacka, Danuta Izabela

    2012-02-01

    In this study, we determined the concentrations of total mercury (Hg) in samples of liver, kidney and skeletal muscle of 27 red foxes Vulpes vulpes (L., 1758) from north-western Poland, and examined the morphometric characteristics of the collected specimens. The analysis also included the relationship between Hg concentration and the fox size, and the suitability of individual organs as bioindicators in indirect evaluation of environmental mercury contamination. Determination of Hg concentration was performed by atomic absorption spectroscopy. In the analysed samples, the Hg concentration was low and the maximum value did not exceed 0.85 mgHg/kg dry weight (dw). There were no significant differences in Hg concentrations in the analysed material between males and females or between immature and adult groups. The median concentrations of Hg in the liver, kidney and skeletal muscle were 0.22, 0.11 and 0.05 mgHg/kg dw, respectively. The correlation coefficients were significant between the concentrations of mercury in the liver, kidney and skeletal muscle (positive) and between the kidney Hg concentration and kidney mass (negative). Taking into account our results and findings of other authors, it may be argued that the red fox exhibits a measurable response to mercury environmental pollution and meets the requirements of a bioindicator.

  6. First report of Angiostrongylus vasorum and Hepatozoon from a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from West Virginia, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kistler, Whitney M; Brown, Justin D; Allison, Andrew B; Nemeth, Nicole M; Yabsley, Michael J

    2014-02-24

    Angiostrongylus vasorum was identified in the lungs of a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from West Virginia, United States (US), indicating a new geographical location for this metastrongylid nematode. The fox was euthanized and submitted for necropsy after displaying erratic behavior. We did not detect rabies virus or canine distemper virus from the fox. We observed bronchopneumonia associated with A. vasorum infection disseminated in both lungs. In addition, protozoal meronts were observed in the liver, spleen, and mesenteric lymph node, and were identified as Hepatozoon canis. Lymphoid depletion was also observed in the spleen and mesenteric lymph node. In addition to A. vasorum and H. canis infections, Eucoleus aerophilus eggs and adult worms were observed in the lungs of the fox. Severe lesions associated with A. vasorum infection were observed in the lungs and these were determined to be the likely cause of morbidity; however, synergistic effects among the multiple infections detected in this fox cannot be ruled out. This is the first report of an autochthonous A. vasorum infection in the US and from outside of Newfoundland Canada, the only place in North America where the parasite is known to be endemic. Additionally, this is the first report of a H. canis infection in a red fox from the US. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. EUCOLEUS BOEHMI INFECTION IN THE NASAL CONCHAE AND PARANASAL SINUSES OF RED FOX (VULPES VULPES) ON PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND, CANADA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, Alfonso; Aburto, Enrique; Jones, Kathleen; Robbins, William; Conboy, Gary

    2016-04-28

    Eucoleus boehmi (Nematoda: Capillariidae) occurs in the nasal conchae and paranasal sinuses of wild and domestic canids. We surveyed the red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) on Prince Edward Island, Canada, for E. boehmi infection and characterized the associated histopathology. Nasal capillarid infections were detected based on histologic examination of three coronal sections of the nasal cavity and by centrifugal flotation examination (CFE) of rectal feces. Capillarids were detected in histologic sections in 28 of 36 (78%) foxes; detection occurred most frequently in the caudal section (28 foxes) and least in the rostral section (10 foxes). Adult worm morphology was typical for capillarids (stichosome esophagus, bacillary bands, bipolar plugged eggs); E. boehmi eggs were specifically identified based on the characteristic pitted shell wall surface. Adult worms were detected in histologic sections in all 28 and E. boehmi eggs in 21 of the positive foxes. No eggs of Eucoleus aerophilus were observed in any of the sections. Affected foxes had an eosinophilic and lymphoplasmacytic rhinitis with goblet cell hyperplasia. Eggs of E. aerophilus were detected on CFE in 20 of 36 (56%) foxes; 19 of the histologically positive foxes were coinfected with E. aerophilus. Eggs of E. boehmi were detected on CFE in 26 of 36 (72%) foxes and were consistent in size and morphology with those described from wild canids, but they differed from those reported from cases of infection in dogs. Prevalence based on identification of eggs on histologic section or CFE indicated 27 of 36 (75%) red foxes examined were infected with E. boehmi.

  8. Insights into Korean red fox (Vulpes vulpes) based on mitochondrial cytochrome b sequence variation in East Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Jeong-Nam; Han, Sang-Hoon; Kim, Bang-Hwan; Kryukov, Alexey P; Kim, Soonok; Lee, Byoung-Yoon; Kwak, Myounghai

    2012-11-01

    The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is the most widely distributed terrestrial carnivore in the world, occurring throughout most of North America, Europe, Asia, and North Africa. In South Korea, however, this species has been drastically reduced due to habitat loss and poaching. Consequently, it is classified as an endangered species in Korea. As a first step of a planned red fox restoration project, preserved red fox museum specimens were used to determine the genetic status of red foxes that had previously inhabited South Korea against red foxes from neighboring countries. Total eighty three mtDNA cytochrome b sequences, including 22 newly obtained East Asian red fox sequences and worldwide red fox sequences from NCBI, were clustered into three clades (i.e., I, II, and III) based on haplotype network and neighbor-joining trees. The mean genetic distance between clades was 2.0%. Clade III contained South Korean and other East Asian samples in addition to Eurasian and North Pacific individuals. In clade III, South Korean individuals were separated into two lineages of Eurasian and North Pacific groups, showing unclear phylogeographic structuring and admixture. This suggests that South Korean red fox populations may have been composed of individuals from these two different genetic lineages.

  9. Population structures of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) on the Hokkaido Island, Japan, revealed by microsatellite analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oishi, Takuya; Uraguchi, Kohji; Takahashi, Kenichi; Masuda, Ryuichi

    2011-01-01

    In order to examine the population structures of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) on the Hokkaido Island in Japan, we conducted analysis on 250 foxes from all over the island for 12 microsatellite loci. Assignment tests using the genotype data set showed that they were divided into 6 subpopulations. Of the 6, one was geographically isolated in the southern region and considered definitive subpopulation, whereas the other 5 were not. The slight differences among the latter 5 subpopulations were explained by the high adaptability and long dispersal of the red fox on the Hokkaido Island. Although there are few ecological data to explain the genetic differentiation of the southern population, we have proposed some hypotheses from the present ecological and geohistorical viewpoints. One convincing reason from the ecological viewpoint is the restriction of gene flow to southern Hokkaido from other areas due to geographical isolation resulting from the land shape. The other explanation is the geohistorical division of southern Hokkaido from other regions on the island during the last interglacial age, resulting in the isolation of the fox population.

  10. Characterization and application of newly developed polymorphic microsatellite markers in the Ezo red fox (Vulpes vulpes schrencki).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tada, T; Seki, Y; Kameyama, Y; Kikkawa, Y; Wada, K

    2016-12-19

    The Ezo red fox (Vulpes vulpes schrencki), a subspecies endemic to Hokkaido island, Japan, is a known host species for the tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis. To develop tools for molecular ecological studies, we isolated 28 microsatellite regions from the genome of Ezo red fox, and developed 18 polymorphic microsatellite markers. These markers were characterized using 7 individuals and 22 fecal samples of the Ezo red fox. The number of alleles for these markers ranged from 1 to 7, and the observed heterozygosity, estimated on the basis of the genotypes of 7 individuals, ranged from 0.29 to 1.00. All markers, except DvNok5, were in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium (P > 0.05), and no linkage disequilibrium was detected among these loci, except between DvNok14 and DvNok28 (P = 0.01). Moreover, six microsatellite loci were successfully genotyped using feces-derived DNA from the Ezo red fox. The markers developed in our study might serve as a useful tool for molecular ecological studies of the Ezo red fox.

  11. The diet of Danish red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in relation to a changing agricultural ecosystem. A historical perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pagh, Sussie; Tjørnløv, Rune Skjold; Olesen, Carsten Riis

    2015-01-01

    Rodents and especially voles (Microtus agrestis or arvalis) make up the basic diet of foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark. As the abundance of voles and mice may have decreased as a result of modern agricultural procedures, this study investigates potential changes in the diet of Danish red foxes over...... the past 4 decades in relation to a changing agricultural landscape. Our study compares the stomach contents of foxes collected in Jutland during the years 2012–2014 with a similar study from 1965 to 1970. The results show that small rodents occur in the stomachs of foxes with the same frequencies today...... (73 %) as 40–50 years ago (67 %), while the frequency of European brown hare (Lepus europaeus) has decreased from 7 to 3 % and the frequency of roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) has increased from 3 to 18 %. The changes in the occurrence of brown hare and roe deer in the diet of foxes during the past 40...

  12. Geographical variations of the skull in the red fox Vulpes vulpes on the Japanese Islands: an exception to Bergmann's rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oishi, Takuya; Uraguchi, Kohji; Abramov, Alexei V; Masuda, Ryuichi

    2010-12-01

    In order to clarify the morphological differences between two subspecies of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) on the Japanese Islands and test the validity of Bergmann's rule, we examined geographical variations in 25 cranial and 24 dental characters in V. v. schrencki from Hokkaido and V. v. japonica from the other main islands of Japan (Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu). Many skull measurements, including the male greatest length, condylobasal length, and the length of upper and lower tooth rows, were significantly larger for V. v. japonica than for V. v. schrencki, whereas most tooth measurements, especially the length of molars and premolars, in V. v. schrencki were larger than those in V. v. japonica. Although the two subspecies were morphologically well-differentiated from each other, the results did not support that they have evolved following Bergmann's rule of adaptation to cold climates. Based on consideration of the relatively large differences of their tooth sizes, which are not easily influenced by food abundance, and previous genetic research on the different migration histories of the two subspecies, the morphological differences detected in the present study may have resulted not only from the present ecological differences between the two subspecies, but also from the difference of migration history and evolutionary constraints.

  13. Angiostrongylus vasorum in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes and badgers (Meles meles from Central and Northern Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Magi

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract During 2004-2005 and 2007-2008, 189 foxes (Vulpes vulpes and 6 badgers (Meles meles were collected in different areas of Central Northern Italy (Piedmont, Liguria and Tuscany and examined for Angiostrongylus vasorum infection. The prevalence of the infection was significantly different in the areas considered, with the highest values in the district of Imperia (80%, Liguria and in Montezemolo (70%, southern Piedmont; the prevalence in Tuscany was 7%. One badger collected in the area of Imperia turned out to be infected, representing the first report of the parasite in this species in Italy. Further studies are needed to evaluate the role played by fox populations as reservoirs of infection and the probability of its spreading to domestic dogs.
    Riassunto Angiostrongylus vasorum nella volpe (Vulpes vulpes e nel tasso (Meles meles in Italia centro-settentrionale. Nel 2004-2005 e 2007-2008, 189 volpi (Vulpes vulpes e 6 tassi (Meles meles provenienti da differenti aree dell'Italia settentrionale e centrale (Piemonte, Liguria Toscana, sono stati esaminati per la ricerca di Angiostrongylus vasorum. La prevalenza del nematode è risultata significativamente diversa nelle varie zone, con valori elevati nelle zone di Imperia (80% e di Montezemolo (70%, provincia di Cuneo; la prevalenza in Toscana è risultata del 7%. Un tasso proveniente dall'area di Imperia è risultato positivo per A. vasorum; questa è la prima segnalazione del parassita in tale specie in Italia. Ulteriori studi sono necessari per valutare il potenziale della volpe come serbatoio e la possibilità di diffusione della parassitosi ai cani domestici.

    doi:10.4404/hystrix-20.2-4442

  14. Lafora's-like disease in a fennec fox (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honnold, Shelley P; Schulman, F Yvonne; Bauman, Karen; Nelson, Kevin

    2010-09-01

    A 6-yr-old captive-born female fennec fox (Vulpes zerda) had a history of multiple seizures and was treated with diazepam and phenobarbital therapy. Despite medical treatment, the seizures continued. They were intermittent and progressive, resulting in neurologic deficits and death of the animal within 6 mo of onset of the clinical signs. At necropsy, the animal was in good nutritional condition, and no gross lesions were noted in the brain. Histologically, amphophilic to basophilic, periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) positive, diastase-resistant inclusions were present in the brain, heart, and liver. Ultrastructurally, the inclusions were variably electron dense, fibrillary to occasionally granular, and non-membrane bound. The clinical, histologic, and ultrastructural findings were consistent with Lafora's disease, which in humans is a rare, fatal, autosomal recessive hereditary neurometabolic disorder characterized by progressive myoclonic epilepsy. This is the first report of Lafora's-like disease in a fennec fox.

  15. Central vestibular syndrome in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with presumptive right caudal cerebral artery ischemic infarct and prevalent midbrain involvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricciardi, Mario; Gernone, Floriana; Simone, Antonio De; Giannuzzi, Pasquale

    2017-01-01

    A wild young male red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) was found in the mountainous hinterland of Rome (Italy) with a heavily depressed mental status and unresponsive to the surrounding environment. Neurological examination revealed depression, left circling, right head tilt, ventromedial positional strabismus and decreased postural reactions on the left side. Neurological abnormalities were suggestive of central vestibular syndrome. Two consecutive MRIs performed with 30 days interval were compatible with lacunar ischemic infarct in the territory of right caudal cerebral artery and its collateral branches. The lesion epicentre was in the right periaqueductal portion of the rostral mesencephalic tegmentum. Neuroanatomical and neurophysiological correlation between lesion localization and clinical presentation are discussed.

  16. Central vestibular syndrome in a red fox (Vulpes vulpes with presumptive right caudal cerebral artery ischemic infarct and prevalent midbrain involvement

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    Mario Ricciardi

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available A wild young male red fox (Vulpes vulpes was found in the mountainous hinterland of Rome (Italy with a heavily depressed mental status and unresponsive to the surrounding environment. Neurological examination revealed depression, left circling, right head tilt, ventromedial positional strabismus and decreased postural reactions on the left side. Neurological abnormalities were suggestive of central vestibular syndrome. Two consecutive MRIs performed with 30 days interval were compatible with lacunar ischemic infarct in the territory of right caudal cerebral artery and its collateral branches. The lesion epicentre was in the right periaqueductal portion of the rostral mesencephalic tegmentum. Neuroanatomical and neurophysiological correlation between lesion localization and clinical presentation are discussed.

  17. Infracommunities of intestinal helminths of the Red Fox Vulpes vulpes (Linnaeus, 1758 from Italian Alps

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    Anna Rita Di Cerbo

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Vulpes vulpes (Linnaeus, 1758 is one of the most common carnivore in Italy and its spread includes almost the whole national territory. The species shows an high ecological plasticity and a variable diet composition connected in part to human sources. This high adaptability permits the red foxes to colonize different habitats like the suburbs of large cities as well as the small villages located in mountain areas. On the other hand, the tourism pressure seems to assume a great importance in the Alps, also in those areas where the foxes live. So, indirect interactions could take place between these animals and the humans. The role of V. vulpes in the zoonoses has not to be understated since this carnivore could transmit parasitic diseases that are able to cause serious pathologies in humans. This study aims just to investigate on intestinal communities of helmiths of V. vulpes in order to make progress in current knowledge on epidemiological situation in Italian Alps. During 1998-2003, we have examined 450 foxes from Trentino Alto Adige, Veneto, Lombardia and Valle d'Aosta. The specimens collected were found dead or have been hunted (according to national law n. 157/92 in localities situated between 170 and 2200 m a.s.l. The carcasses were carried to the provincial sections of Zooprofilattici Institutes, where the intestine was drawn by each sample and all the material was sent to the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of Milan. Parasitological examination of the small intestines was performed by the analysis of the whole sediment and counting technique (SCT. Parasites were preserved in alcohol 70° before to be clarified or stained and identified by microscope (Zeiss Axioscop. Mean abundance, mean intensity and prevalence were calculated for each taxon of helminth. Dates of sampling were grouped within the four seasons. Statistic tests were performed with software package SPSS rel. 11.5 and spatial analysis with the

  18. Evaluation of a serological test (indirect ELISA) for the diagnosis of sarcoptic mange in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bornstein, Set; Frössling, Jenny; Näslund, Katarina; Zakrisson, Göran; Mörner, Torsten

    2006-12-01

    Sarcoptic mange occurs in many parts of the world and is common in populations of domestic and wild canids, including red foxes (Vulpes vulpes). In recent years, an indirect antibody enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), with higher sensitivity and specificity than traditional diagnostic methods, has been successfully applied in the diagnosis of sarcoptic mange in dogs. The same ELISA has also demonstrated specific antibodies to Sarcoptes scabiei in experimentally infected red foxes. The aim of this study was to evaluate the indirect ELISA when used to detect antibodies to S. scabiei in field sera from Swedish red foxes. One cohort of both infected and non-infected red foxes (cohort 1; n = 88), and one cohort of apparently non-infected foxes (cohort 2; n = 67) were examined for skin lesions and presence of S. scabiei by thorough visual examination at autopsy and skin scrapings. Samples of blood-tinted body liquid from the abdomen or thorax cavity were collected and analysed by the indirect ELISA. The relative sensitivity and specificity of the ELISA at different cut-offs (OD values) were estimated by comparing the test results to the infection status as determined by examination and skin scrapings. The highest combination of relative sensitivity and specificity, calculated based on cohort 1, was 95.4 and 100.0%, respectively. These estimates were constant for cut-offs 0.150-0.225, which included the cut-off based on the mean plus three standard deviations of test results from cohort 2 (0.165). It is concluded that this test can be useful in diagnosis and epidemiological studies of S. scabiei infection in red foxes.

  19. Platinum coat color in red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is caused by a mutation in an autosomal copy of KIT.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, J L; Kozysa, A; Kharlamova, A V; Gulevich, R G; Perelman, P L; Fong, H W F; Vladimirova, A V; Oskina, I N; Trut, L N; Kukekova, A V

    2015-04-01

    The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) demonstrates a variety of coat colors including platinum, a common phenotype maintained in farm-bred fox populations. Foxes heterozygous for the platinum allele have a light silver coat and extensive white spotting, whereas homozygosity is embryonic lethal. Two KIT transcripts were identified in skin cDNA from platinum foxes. The long transcript was identical to the KIT transcript of silver foxes, whereas the short transcript, which lacks exon 17, was specific to platinum. The KIT gene has several copies in the fox genome: an autosomal copy on chromosome 2 and additional copies on the B chromosomes. To identify the platinum-specific KIT sequence, the genomes of one platinum and one silver fox were sequenced. A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) was identified at the first nucleotide of KIT intron 17 in the platinum fox. In platinum foxes, the A allele of the SNP disrupts the donor splice site and causes exon 17, which is part of a segment that encodes a conserved tyrosine kinase domain, to be skipped. Complete cosegregation of the A allele with the platinum phenotype was confirmed by linkage mapping (LOD 25.59). All genotyped farm-bred platinum foxes from Russia and the US were heterozygous for the SNP (A/G), whereas foxes with different coat colors were homozygous for the G allele. Identification of the platinum mutation suggests that other fox white-spotting phenotypes, which are allelic to platinum, would also be caused by mutations in the KIT gene. © 2015 Stichting International Foundation for Animal Genetics.

  20. The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) plays a minor role in the epidemiology of the domestic cycle of Trichinella in Romania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imre, Kálmán; Pozio, Edoardo; Tonanzi, Daniele; Sala, Claudia; Ilie, Marius S; Imre, Mirela; Morar, Adriana

    2015-09-15

    Nematode worms of the genus Trichinella are zoonotic parasites with a worldwide distribution. The majority of the biomass of these nematodes circulates among wildlife, but when humans fail in the proper management of domestic animals and wildlife, Trichinella infections are transmitted from the sylvatic to the domestic environment. Such failures occur in Romania, where a high prevalence of Trichinella spiralis has been detected in domestic pigs. The aim of the present study was to provide data about the prevalence of Trichinella spp. infections in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) that are hunted in Romanian counties, in which the prevalences of Trichinella spp. infection in backyard and free-ranging pigs range from 0.17 to 2.5%, to determine the role played by this carnivore species in the transmission of the parasite to domestic cycle. A total of 121 animals from 45 hunting grounds of three counties were screened to detect Trichinella spp. larvae by the digestion method. Infections were detected in 26 (21.5%) foxes from 18 (40%) hunting grounds of the three counties (13/67 in Arad, 1/3 in Hunedoara, and 12/51 in Timiş). The mean larval density was 10.5 larvae per gram. Of the 25 successfully tested samples, the Trichinella larvae from 24 isolates were identified as T. britovi (96%), and the larvae from one isolate were identified as T. spiralis (4%). No mixed infections were recorded. The present results revealed that the red fox should be considered an important T. britovi reservoir in the sylvatic cycle; in contrast, the detection of only a single T. spiralis-positive isolate suggests that red foxes play a minor role in the epidemiology of the domestic cycle in the investigated area of western Romania. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Sequence comparison of prefrontal cortical brain transcriptome from a tame and an aggressive silver fox (Vulpes vulpes)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background Two strains of the silver fox (Vulpes vulpes), with markedly different behavioral phenotypes, have been developed by long-term selection for behavior. Foxes from the tame strain exhibit friendly behavior towards humans, paralleling the sociability of canine puppies, whereas foxes from the aggressive strain are defensive and exhibit aggression to humans. To understand the genetic differences underlying these behavioral phenotypes fox-specific genomic resources are needed. Results cDNA from mRNA from pre-frontal cortex of a tame and an aggressive fox was sequenced using the Roche 454 FLX Titanium platform (> 2.5 million reads & 0.9 Gbase of tame fox sequence; >3.3 million reads & 1.2 Gbase of aggressive fox sequence). Over 80% of the fox reads were assembled into contigs. Mapping fox reads against the fox transcriptome assembly and the dog genome identified over 30,000 high confidence fox-specific SNPs. Fox transcripts for approximately 14,000 genes were identified using SwissProt and the dog RefSeq databases. An at least 2-fold expression difference between the two samples (p fox transcriptome. Conclusions Transcriptome sequencing significantly expanded genomic resources available for the fox, a species without a sequenced genome. In a very cost efficient manner this yielded a large number of fox-specific SNP markers for genetic studies and provided significant insights into the gene expression profile of the fox pre-frontal cortex; expression differences between the two fox samples; and a catalogue of potentially important gene-specific sequence variants. This result demonstrates the utility of this approach for developing genomic resources in species with limited genomic information. PMID:21967120

  2. Sequence comparison of prefrontal cortical brain transcriptome from a tame and an aggressive silver fox (Vulpes vulpes

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    Sun Qi

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Two strains of the silver fox (Vulpes vulpes, with markedly different behavioral phenotypes, have been developed by long-term selection for behavior. Foxes from the tame strain exhibit friendly behavior towards humans, paralleling the sociability of canine puppies, whereas foxes from the aggressive strain are defensive and exhibit aggression to humans. To understand the genetic differences underlying these behavioral phenotypes fox-specific genomic resources are needed. Results cDNA from mRNA from pre-frontal cortex of a tame and an aggressive fox was sequenced using the Roche 454 FLX Titanium platform (> 2.5 million reads & 0.9 Gbase of tame fox sequence; >3.3 million reads & 1.2 Gbase of aggressive fox sequence. Over 80% of the fox reads were assembled into contigs. Mapping fox reads against the fox transcriptome assembly and the dog genome identified over 30,000 high confidence fox-specific SNPs. Fox transcripts for approximately 14,000 genes were identified using SwissProt and the dog RefSeq databases. An at least 2-fold expression difference between the two samples (p Conclusions Transcriptome sequencing significantly expanded genomic resources available for the fox, a species without a sequenced genome. In a very cost efficient manner this yielded a large number of fox-specific SNP markers for genetic studies and provided significant insights into the gene expression profile of the fox pre-frontal cortex; expression differences between the two fox samples; and a catalogue of potentially important gene-specific sequence variants. This result demonstrates the utility of this approach for developing genomic resources in species with limited genomic information.

  3. Genotyping-By-Sequencing (GBS) Detects Genetic Structure and Confirms Behavioral QTL in Tame and Aggressive Foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Jennifer L; Wittgenstein, Helena; Mitchell, Sharon E; Hyma, Katie E; Temnykh, Svetlana V; Kharlamova, Anastasiya V; Gulevich, Rimma G; Vladimirova, Anastasiya V; Fong, Hiu Wa Flora; Acland, Gregory M; Trut, Lyudmila N; Kukekova, Anna V

    2015-01-01

    The silver fox (Vulpes vulpes) offers a novel model for studying the genetics of social behavior and animal domestication. Selection of foxes, separately, for tame and for aggressive behavior has yielded two strains with markedly different, genetically determined, behavioral phenotypes. Tame strain foxes are eager to establish human contact while foxes from the aggressive strain are aggressive and difficult to handle. These strains have been maintained as separate outbred lines for over 40 generations but their genetic structure has not been previously investigated. We applied a genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) approach to provide insights into the genetic composition of these fox populations. Sequence analysis of EcoT22I genomic libraries of tame and aggressive foxes identified 48,294 high quality SNPs. Population structure analysis revealed genetic divergence between the two strains and more diversity in the aggressive strain than in the tame one. Significant differences in allele frequency between the strains were identified for 68 SNPs. Three of these SNPs were located on fox chromosome 14 within an interval of a previously identified behavioral QTL, further supporting the importance of this region for behavior. The GBS SNP data confirmed that significant genetic diversity has been preserved in both fox populations despite many years of selective breeding. Analysis of SNP allele frequencies in the two populations identified several regions of genetic divergence between the tame and aggressive foxes, some of which may represent targets of selection for behavior. The GBS protocol used in this study significantly expanded genomic resources for the fox, and can be adapted for SNP discovery and genotyping in other canid species.

  4. The quality of the diet of foxes (Vulpes vulpes in a Mediterranean coastal area (Central Italy / Qualità della dieta della Volpe Vulpes vulpes in un'area costiera mediterranea

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    Claudio Cavani

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The diet of foxes in the Natural Park of Maremma includes essentially Juniperus fruits and Arthropods, mainly Coleoptera and Orthoptera. These components were analysed in order to value their chemical nutritive. The following parameters were determined: proximate analysis (crude protein Nx6.25; ether extract; crude fibre; ash, aminoacids, and mineral contents. Juniperus berries are characterized by a low crude protein and ash content (1.83 and 2.75% on dry matter while the level of fibrous constituents, expressed in terms of crude fibre, occurs in relatively high quantities (30.8% on dry matter. By contrast, Orthoptera and Coleoptera show high crude protein content (67.3 and 57.8% on dry matter of average nutritive value (chemical score 0.52 and 0.51. The ash level is 68.8 and 76.6 g/kg on dry matter, with high phosphorus, iron and zinc content. Juniperus berries are a feed component of moderate energy level, while Arthropods seem to be an important mineral and protein source. Riassunto La dieta della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes nel Parco Naturale della Maremma è costituita essenzialmente da frutti di Ginepro e da Artropodi, soprattutto Coleotteri ed Ortotteri. Allo scopo di fornire una valutazione delle caratteristiche chimico-nutritive di questi componenti alimentari, sono stati analizzati diversi campioni della dieta. Sono stati determinati i parametri riguardanti le analisi standard per gli alimenti di uso zootecnico, il contenuto in aminoacidi e in elementi minerali. I frutti di Ginepro sono caratterizzati da uno scarso tenore in proteine grezze e in ceneri (1,83 e 2,75% della sostanza secca, mentre il contenuto in costituenti fibrosi, espressi in termini di fibra grezza, risulta relativamente elevato (30,8% della sostanza secca. Gli Ortotteri ed i Coleotteri mostrano invece un considerevole contenuto in proteine grezze (67,3 e 57,8% della sostanza secca, di valore

  5. The diet of the fox (Vulpes vulpes in woodlands of Orobie Alps (Lombardy region, Northern Italy / Alimentazione della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in aree boscate delle Alpi Orobie

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    Marco Cantini

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The diet of the fox was investigated by analysis of 273 scats, collected along standard trails from April to November 1987 and 1988. Food habits of foxes were described for three altitudinal ranges. Mammals, mainly Clethrionomys glareolus and Microtus multiplex, were the staple food (percentage of frequency 42.8%, followed by fruits and other vegetables (26.7% and 37.3% respectively. Birds, Invertebrates (mainly Insects and garbage were little eaten. The game species (ungulates, hares, pheasants occurred with a low frequency (8.4% in the diet. The trophic niche breadth varied little through the altitudinal ranges and the seasons. The trophic niche overlap between the fox and the genus Martes (190 scats of M. martes and M. foina were examined is relatively wide (O=0.868. Riassunto La dieta della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in aree boscate delle Alpi Orobie (Val Lesina è stata indagata nel periodo aprile-novembre 1987 e 1988 mediante l'analisi di 273 feci, raccolte lungo percorsi-campione ricadenti in tre piani vegetazionali. I Mammiferi, in particolare Clethrionomys glareolus e Microtus multiplex, sono la componente principale della dieta (frequenza percentuale 42,8%. Rilevante è anche il consumo di frutti (soprattutto in estate e autunno e di altri vegetali (26,7% e 37,3% rispettivamente, mentre poco frequente è quello di Uccelli, Invertebrati e rifiuti. Complessivamente ridotta è l'azione predatoria della Volpe nei confronti delle specie di interesse venatorio (Ungulati, lepri, Galliformi. L'ampiezza della nicchia trofica mostra modeste variazioni stagionali e altitudinali. I1 grado di sovrapposizione tra la nicchia trofica della Volpe e quella del genere Martes, quest'ultima ricavata dall'analisi di 190 feci di Martora (M. martes e Faina (M. foina, è elevato (O=0,868. Tuttavia, poiché in condizioni di

  6. The dispersion and detection patterns of mtDNA-assigned red fox Vulpes vulpes scats in Tasmania are anomalous.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marks, Clive A; Obendorf, David; Pereira, Filipe; Edwards, Ivo; Hall, Graham P

    2014-08-01

    Models used for resource allocation in eradication programmes must be based on replicated data of known quality and have proven predictive accuracy, or they may provide a false indication of species presence and/or distribution. In the absence of data corroborating the presence of extant foxes Vulpes vulpes in Tasmania, a habitat-specific model based upon mtDNA data (Sarre et al . 2012. Journal Applied Ecology , 50, 459-468) implied that foxes were widespread. Overall, 61 of 9940 (0·6%) surveyed scats were assigned as mtDNA fox positive by the fox eradication programme (FEP). We investigated the spatiotemporal distribution of the 61 mtDNA-assigned fox scats and modelled the probability of replicating scat detection in independent surveys using detection dogs based upon empirically derived probabilities of scat detection success obtained by the FEP using imported fox scats. In a prior mainland study, fox genotypes were recurrently detected in a consecutive four-day pool of scats. In Tasmania, only three contemporaneously collected scat pairs of unknown genotype were detected by the FEP within an area corresponding to a conservatively large mainland fox home range (639 ha) in a decade. Nearest neighbour pairs were widely spaced (mean = 7·0 km; circular area = 153 km 2 ) and generated after a mean of 281 days. The majority of assigned mtDNA positive scats were found in urban and peri-urban environments corresponding to small mainland fox home ranges (30-45 ha) that imply higher scat density and more certain replication. Using the lowest empirically determined scat detection success for dogs, the failure to replicate fox scat detection on 34 of 36 occasions in a large (639 ha) home range is highly improbable ( P  = 0·00001) and suggestive of Type I error. Synthesis and applications . Type I error, which may have various sources, should be considered when scat mtDNA data are few, accumulated over many years, uncorroborated by observations of extant

  7. Long-term study of Sarcoptes scabiei infection in Norwegian red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) indicating host/parasite adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Rebecca K; Bornstein, Set; Handeland, Kjell

    2008-10-01

    The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) population, in Norway, was naïve to Sarcoptes scabiei prior to the late 1970s when this parasite was first recorded and a still ongoing epidemic started. During the course of this protracted epidemic some degree of host/parasite adaptation, with the occurrence of healthy antibody positive foxes, might be expected. In the present study the prevalence of sarcoptic mange and serologically identified S. scabiei exposure was investigated in 363 Norwegian red foxes, shot by hunters during two different study periods (1994-1995 and 2002-2005). The sarcoptic mange diagnosis was based upon the presence of clearly visible lesions in the skin of the cadaver with confirmatory demonstration of S. scabiei. The serodiagnosis was based on an indirect-ELISA. There was a significant decrease in prevalence of both mange cases and seropositive animals from the first to the second study period. Whilst the mange prevalence fell more than threefold, from 30.0% to 6.6%, the seroprevalence dropped less dramatically from 53.3% to 19.1%. The smaller decrease in seroprevalence compared to mange cases reflected a significantly higher ratio of seropositive-mange negative versus seropositive-mange positive foxes, during the second study period, 40:18, compared to the first, 14:18. These findings indicate that the red fox population is adapting to live with the parasite and that low-grade or sub-clinical infections, and even recoveries, occur amongst exposed foxes. Mange positive foxes had significantly poorer body condition than those without sarcoptic mange. No significant difference in body condition was seen between seropositive-mange negative versus seronegative-mange negative foxes. The ELISA sensitivity was found to be 95% and proved a useful tool for investigating the exposure to S. scabiei in wild foxes. This study is believed to be the first pointing to a long-term Sarcoptes/fox adaptation, combining long-term prevalence studies of clinical sarcoptic mange

  8. Detection of Babesia annae DNA in lung exudate samples from Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Great Britain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartley, Paul M; Hamilton, Clare; Wilson, Cari; Innes, Elisabeth A; Katzer, Frank

    2016-02-12

    This study aimed to determine the prevalence of Babesia species DNA in lung exudate samples collected from red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) from across Great Britain. Babesia are small piroplasmid parasites which are mainly transmitted through the bite of infected ticks of the family Ixodidae. Babesia can cause potentially fatal disease in a wide-range of mammalian species including humans, dogs and cattle, making them of significant economic importance to both the medical and veterinary fields. DNA was extracted from lung exudate samples of 316 foxes. A semi-nested PCR was used to initially screen samples, using universal Babesia-Theileria primers which target the 18S rRNA gene. A selection of positive PCR amplicons were purified and sequenced. Subsequently specific primers were designed to detect Babesia annae and used to screen all 316 DNA samples. Randomly selected positive samples were purified and sequenced (GenBank accession KT580786). Clones spanning a 1717 bp region of the 18S rRNA gene were generated from 2 positive samples, the resultant consensus sequence was submitted to GenBank (KT580785). Sequence KT580785 was used in the phylogenetic analysis Babesia annae DNA was detected in the fox samples, in total 46/316 (14.6%) of samples tested positive for the presence of Babesia annae DNA. The central region of England had the highest prevalence at 36.7%, while no positive samples were found from Wales, though only 12 samples were tested from this region. Male foxes were found to have a higher prevalence of Babesia annae DNA than females in all regions of Britain. Phylogenetic and sequence analysis of the GenBank submissions (Accession numbers KT580785 and KT580786) showed 100% identity to Babesia sp.-'Spanish Dog' (AY534602, EU583387 and AF188001). This is the first time that Babesia annae DNA has been reported in red foxes in Great Britain with positive samples being found across England and Scotland indicating that this parasite is well established within the

  9. Analysis of genomic instability in primary spermatocytes of interspecific hybrids of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and the Arctic fox (Alopex lagopus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bugno-Poniewierska, Monika; Pawlina, Klaudia; Jakubczak, Andrzej; Jeżewska-Witkowska, Grażyna

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to analyse meiotic cells of male interspecific hybrids of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and the arctic fox (Alopex lagopus). To this end we determined stages of meiotic cells as well as carried out FISH analyses with probes specific to heterosomes and a TUNEL assay on synaptonemal complex preparations. The meiotic cell analysis revealed only the presence of stages of the first meiotic division from leptotene to pachytene. Moreover, we observed an increased level of early dissociation of the X-Y bivalent as well as a high percentage of apoptotic cells. These results indicate the disruption of meiotic division in male hybrids manifested through meiotic arrest of the cells. Faulty pairing of the heterosomes can be considered as one of the causes leading to the initiation of the apoptotic process.

  10. Repeated inoculations with the lung and heartworm nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum result in increasing larval excretion and worm burden in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Woolsey, Ian David; Webster, P.; Thamsborg, Stig Milan

    2017-01-01

    The French heartworm Angiostongylus vasorum is found in European red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and dog populations, where it appears to be spreading geographically. Once introduced into new areas, it establishes in local fox populations, typically to over 50% prevalence in a few years. High...... and elevated excretion of L1 in feces. Experimentally infected foxes were subsequently inoculated via stomach tube once (9 weeks post initial inoculation) or twice (9 and 13 weeks post inoculation (wpi)) with 100 third stage A. vasorum larvae (L3) previously isolated from aquatic snails infected with L1 from...... a naturally infected dog. Despite large variation in fecal larval excretion for the individual animals within the groups, excretion of L1 was significantly higher in foxes twice inoculated as compared to foxes inoculated only once. With an outlier in the once inoculated group removed, excretion became...

  11. Concentrations of trace elements in tissues of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and stone marten (Martes foina) from suburban and rural areas in Croatia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bilandžić, Nina; Dežđek, Danko; Sedak, Marija; Dokić, Maja; Solomun, Božica; Varenina, Ivana; Knežević, Zorka; Slavica, Alen

    2010-11-01

    Trace elements concentrations (As, Cd, Cu, Pb and Hg) were determined in the liver, kidney and muscle of 28 red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and 16 stone marten (Martes foina) from suburban and rural habitats from Croatia. Rural and suburban habitats affected Cd and Hg levels in the muscle, liver and kidney of red fox. Significant differences in metal concentrations in the muscle, liver and kidney were detected among species. Suburban stone marten accumulated the highest levels of trace elements (mg/kg w.w.): in muscle 0.019 for Hg; in liver 0.161 for Cd, 36.1 for Cu and 0.349 for Pb; in kidney 1.34 for Cd and 0.318 for Pb. Values observed were higher than those found in suburban red fox and therefore, may represent an important bioindicator for the accumulation of toxic metals in urbanized habitats.

  12. Gastrointestinal Parasites of Two Populations of Arctic Foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Northeast Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreassen, P.N.S.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Kapel, Christian M. O.

    2017-01-01

    Parasitological examination of 275 faecal samples from Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) collected at Zackenberg Valley and Karupelv Valley in north-east Greenland from 2006 to 2008 was conducted using sieving and microscopy. Overall, 125 (45.5%) samples contained parasite eggs of Taenia crassiceps...

  13. Local feeding specialization of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes in response to eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus introduction (NW Italy

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    Alessandro Balestrieri

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract To appreciate the influence of the introduction of the Eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus on the food habits of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes, between June 1998 and February 2000 fox diet was investigated by means of scat analysis (N=115 in a 250 ha wide Natural Reserve of NW Italy, and compared with data collected in the same area prior to cottontail colonization (1988-1989. Comparison included also the diet of badgers (Meles meles, considered as potential competitors for food resources. Alien lagomorphs (mean percent volume, Vm% = 68% represented by far the most exploited resource, only three other food items reaching values of mean percent volume barely higher than 5%. Cottontails frequency of occurrence did not vary according either to season or to their reproductive cycle (II-IX vs. X-I, whilst diet niche breadth varied inversely proportional to the use of this key-resource. Overall fox trophic niche breadth varied from 0.64 in 1988-89 to 0.31 in 1998-00 (B, Levin’s index. These findings led us to consider the feeding habits of the fox in the study area as a result of local specialization of a typical generalist carnivore, according to the predictions of optimal foraging theory. No variation occurred in the badger niche breadth since cottontail introduction, whilst niche overlap between foxes and badgers decreased from 0.59 to 0.13 (O, Pianka’s index, possibly reducing competition for food in summer. Riassunto Specializzazione alimentare a livello locale della Volpe Vulpes vulpes in risposta all’introduzione del Silvilago Sylvilagus floridanus (Italia nord occidentale. Per valutare gli effetti dell’introduzione del Silvilago (Sylvilagus floridanus sul comportamento alimentare della volpe (Vulpes vulpes, nel periodo giugno 1998-febbraio 2000, la dieta del carnivoro è stata definita tramite l’analisi di 115

  14. Repeated inoculations with the lung and heartworm nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum result in increasing larval excretion and worm burden in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian David Woolsey

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The French heartworm Angiostongylus vasorum is found in European red fox (Vulpes vulpes and dog populations, where it appears to be spreading geographically. Once introduced into new areas, it establishes in local fox populations, typically to over 50% prevalence in a few years. High susceptibility and constant excretion of first stage larvae (L1 by the definitive hosts are prerequisites for sustaining high parasite biomass in a particular habitat. The present study explores the hypothesis that repeated ingestion of gastropods in nature will result in accumulation of adult worms and elevated excretion of L1 in feces. Experimentally infected foxes were subsequently inoculated via stomach tube once (9 weeks post initial inoculation or twice (9 and 13 weeks post inoculation (wpi with 100 third stage A. vasorum larvae (L3 previously isolated from aquatic snails infected with L1 from a naturally infected dog. Despite large variation in fecal larval excretion for the individual animals within the groups, excretion of L1 was significantly higher in foxes twice inoculated as compared to foxes inoculated only once. With an outlier in the once inoculated group removed, excretion became significantly higher in the three times inoculated group. Establishment of adult worms varied and only a trend to higher worm burdens was found in the group of foxes inoculated three times. However, this became significant with the same single outlier removed. Overall, it appears that protective immunity to A. vasorum does not appear to occur in V. vulpes with animals exhibiting high infection intensities without obvious clinical signs. The increasing larval excretion in foxes being repeatedly exposed to A. vasorum L3 support the hypothesis that foxes under natural conditions may repeatedly ingest infected gastropods and remain a source of environmental contamination for several months, potentially contributing to the establishment of endemic foci through increasing L1

  15. Specific detection of Echinococcus spp. from the Tibetan fox (Vulpes ferrilata) and the red fox (V. vulpes) using copro-DNA PCR analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Weibin; Liu, Nan; Zhang, Gaotian; Renqing, Pengcuo; Xie, Fei; Li, Tiaoying; Wang, Zhenghuan; Wang, Xiaoming

    2012-10-01

    There are three Echinococcus species, Echinococcus granulosus, E. multilocularis, and E. shiquicus, which are distributed on the vast area of pastureland on the eastern Tibetan plateau in China. Tibetan foxes (Vulpes ferrilata) have been determined to be the main wild definitive host of E. multilocularis and E. shiquicus, but little information is available on the prevalence of these two parasites in Tibetan foxes. Consequently, the copro-prevalence of these parasites in foxes from the eastern Tibetan plateau was evaluated in this study. For each copro-DNA sample extracted from fox feces, a 133-bp segment of EgG1 Hae III was used to screen for infection with E. granulosus. Multiplex nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis was used to target an 874-bp segment of the mitochondrial COI gene to distinguish E. multilocularis and E. shiquicus. Among 184 fecal samples, 120 were from Tibetan foxes and six from red foxes (Vulpes vulpes). Of the fecal samples from Tibetan foxes, 74 (giving a copro-prevalence of 62%) showed the presence of Echinococcus spp.: 23 (19%) were found to contain E. multilocularis, 32 (27%) E. shiquicus, and 19 (16%) showed mixed infection with both E. multilocularis and E. shiquicus. Two fecal samples from red foxes were found to be infected with E. multilocularis. No fox feces were found to be infected with E. granulosus. Tests on zinc finger protein genes and a 105-bp fragment of the Sry gene found no significant difference in the prevalence of the two parasites between sexes. The efficiency of our multiplex nested PCR methods were compared with previous polymerase chain reaction-based restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) methods and some problems associated with the copro-PCR were discussed.

  16. Repeated inoculations with the lung and heartworm nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum result in increasing larval excretion and worm burden in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolsey, Ian David; Webster, P; Thamsborg, S; Schnyder, Manuela; Monrad, Jesper; Kapel, C M O

    2017-12-01

    The French heartworm Angiostongylus vasorum is found in European red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) and dog populations, where it appears to be spreading geographically. Once introduced into new areas, it establishes in local fox populations, typically to over 50% prevalence in a few years. High susceptibility and constant excretion of first stage larvae (L1) by the definitive hosts are prerequisites for sustaining high parasite biomass in a particular habitat. The present study explores the hypothesis that repeated ingestion of gastropods in nature will result in accumulation of adult worms and elevated excretion of L1 in feces. Experimentally infected foxes were subsequently inoculated via stomach tube once (9 weeks post initial inoculation) or twice (9 and 13 weeks post inoculation (wpi)) with 100 third stage A. vasorum larvae (L3) previously isolated from aquatic snails infected with L1 from a naturally infected dog. Despite large variation in fecal larval excretion for the individual animals within the groups, excretion of L1 was significantly higher in foxes twice inoculated as compared to foxes inoculated only once. With an outlier in the once inoculated group removed, excretion became significantly higher in the three times inoculated group. Establishment of adult worms varied and only a trend to higher worm burdens was found in the group of foxes inoculated three times. However, this became significant with the same single outlier removed. Overall, it appears that protective immunity to A. vasorum does not appear to occur in V. vulpes with animals exhibiting high infection intensities without obvious clinical signs. The increasing larval excretion in foxes being repeatedly exposed to A. vasorum L3 support the hypothesis that foxes under natural conditions may repeatedly ingest infected gastropods and remain a source of environmental contamination for several months, potentially contributing to the establishment of endemic foci through increasing L1 excretion.

  17. An investigation of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and Eurasian badger (Meles meles) scavenging, scattering, and removal of deer remains: forensic implications and applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Alexandria; Márquez-Grant, Nicholas; Stillman, Richard; Smith, Martin J; Korstjens, Amanda H

    2015-01-01

    Within northwest Europe, especially the United Kingdom, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and the Eurasian Badger (Meles meles) are the largest wild scavengers capable of modifying a set of remains through scavenging. Knowledge of region-specific and species-typical scavenging behaviors of scavengers within the crime scene area and surroundings can aid in more efficient and accurate interpretations. The scavenging behaviors of captive and wild foxes and badgers were recorded and compared through actualistic methods and direct observation. The scavenging by wild foxes and badgers of surface-deposited baits and whole deer (Cervus nippon; Capreolus capreolus) in a woodland was observed and analyzed. Wild foxes were found to scavenge deer more frequently than badgers. The scavenging of deer remains by foxes was also compared with forensic cases. The scavenging pattern and recovery distances of deer and human remains scavenged by foxes were similar but were potentially affected by the condition and deposition of a body, and the presence of clothing. © 2014 American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

  18. Hepatozoon canis in German red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and their ticks: molecular characterization and the phylogenetic relationship to other Hepatozoon spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Najm, Nour-Addeen; Meyer-Kayser, Elisabeth; Hoffmann, Lothar; Pfister, Kurt; Silaghi, Cornelia

    2014-07-01

    In this study, the prevalence of Hepatozoon spp. in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and their ticks from Germany, as well as molecular characterizations and phylogenetic relationship to other Hepatozoon spp. were investigated. DNA extracts of 261 spleen samples and 1,953 ticks were examined for the presence of Hepatozoon spp. by a conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR) targeting the 18S rRNA gene. The ticks included four tick species: Ixodes ricinus, Ixodes canisuga, Ixodes hexagonus and Dermacentor reticulatus. A total of 118/261 foxes (45.2%) and 148/1,953 ticks (7.5%) were Hepatozoon PCR-positive. Amplicons from 36 positive foxes and 41 positive ticks were sequenced. All sequences obtained from foxes and 39/41 from ticks had a 99% similarity to Hepatozoon canis, whereas two ticks' sequences had a 99% identity to Hepatozoon sp. The obtained Hepatozoon sequences in this study were phylogenetically related to other Hepatozoon sequences detected in other countries, which may represent strain variants. The high prevalence of H. canis DNA in red foxes in this study supports the suggested role of those animals in distribution of this parasite. Furthermore, detection of DNA of H. canis in foxes and all examined tick species collected from those foxes allows speculating about previously undescribed potential vectors for H. canis and suggests a potential role of the red fox in its natural endemic cycles.

  19. Occurrence and diversity of arthropod-transmitted pathogens in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in western Austria, and possible vertical (transplacental) transmission of Hepatozoon canis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodžić, Adnan; Mrowietz, Naike; Cézanne, Rita; Bruckschwaiger, Pia; Punz, Sylvia; Habler, Verena Elisabeth; Tomsik, Valentina; Lazar, Judit; Duscher, Georg G; Glawischnig, Walter; Fuehrer, Hans-Peter

    2018-03-01

    Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is the most abundant wild canid species in Austria, and it is a well-known carrier of many pathogens of medical and veterinary concern. The main aim of the present study was to investigate the occurrence and diversity of protozoan, bacterial and filarial parasites transmitted by blood-feeding arthropods in a red fox population in western Austria. Blood (n = 351) and spleen (n = 506) samples from foxes were examined by PCR and sequencing and the following pathogens were identified: Babesia canis, Babesia cf. microti (syn. Theileria annae), Hepatozoon canis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Candidatus Neoehrlichia sp. and Bartonella rochalimae. Blood was shown to be more suitable for detection of Babesia cf. microti, whilst the spleen tissue was better for detection of H. canis than blood. Moreover, extremely low genetic variability of H. canis and its relatively low prevalence rate observed in this study may suggest that the parasite has only recently been introduced in the sampled area. Furthermore, the data presented here demonstrates, for the first time, the possible vertical transmission of H. canis from an infected vixen to the offspring, and this could explain the very high prevalence in areas considered free of its main tick vector(s).

  20. Seasonal changes of trophic niche overlap in the stone marten (Martes foina and the red fox (Vulpes vulpes in a mountainous area of the Northern Apennines (N-Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Brangi

    1995-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Between 1989 and 1991, 284 scats of stone marten (Martes foina and 642 scats of red fox (Vulpes vulpes were collected in a 280 km² mountainous area in the northern Apennines. The scats were analyzed to identify differences between the two species' diets. The prey were grouped in 6 food categories: Fruits, Other Vegetables, Small Mammals, Other Vertebrates, Invertebrates and Garbage. Annual trophic niche was wider in the Red fox (0.62 than in the stone marten (0.53. We also found a large overlap between the two species with some small differences: Other Vertebrates, Small Mammals and Other Vegetables were more used by the Red fox, while Fruits were more used by the stone marten. Riassunto Variazioni stagionali della sovrapposizione di nicchia trofica della faina (Martes foina e della volpe (Vulpes vulpes in un'area montana degli Appennini settentrionali - Tra il 1989 e il 1991 sono state raccolte 284 feci di faina (Martes foina e 642 feci di volpe (Vulpes vulpes in un'area montuosa di 280 km² situata nell'Appennino settentrionale. Le feci sono state analizzate per evidenziare le eventuali differenze nella dieta delle due specie. Le singole prede sono state raggruppate in 6 categorie alimentari: Frutta, Altri Vegetali, Micromammiferi, Altri Vertebrati, Invertebrati, Rifiuti. L'ampiezza annuale della dieta è risultata maggiore nella Volpe (0,62 che non nella Faina (0,53. È stata trovata inoltre una larga sovrapposizione tra le due specie con alcune differenze nell'uso degli Altri Vertebrati, dei Micromammiferi e degli Altri Vegetali che è maggiore nella Volpe e della Frutta, maggiore nella Faina.

  1. Epidemiological survey on Leishmania infection in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and hunting dogs sharing the same rural area in Southern Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piantedosi, Diego; Veneziano, Vincenzo; Di Muccio, Trentina; Manzillo, Valentina Foglia; Fiorentino, Eleonora; Scalone, Aldo; Neola, Benedetto; Di Prisco, Francesca; D'Alessio, Nicola; Gradoni, Luigi; Oliva, Gaetano; Gramiccia, Marina

    2016-12-01

    Southern Italy, particularly Campania region, is an area where canine leishmaniasis (CanL) and zoonotic human visceral leishmaniasis (VL) are endemic. The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) has been hypothesized to play a role in occurrence of CanL in Italy but specific studies are poor. The aim of the present survey was to investigate the prevalence of Leishmania infection in dogs and foxes living in the same rural area (Picentini hills). 123 sera from autochthonous fox-hunting dogs were examined by immunofluorescent-antibody test (IFAT) using a cut-off of 1:160. The seroprevalence of dogs examined was 17.9%. Moreover, 48 foxes were examined after having been shooted by hunters or road accidents. Spleen, liver and lymph node samples were analyzed by specific Leishmania nested PCR (n-PCR). 10 foxes were found infected by L. infantum (20.8%) of which 4 animals in spleen, 2 in lymph nodes and 4 both in spleen and lymph nodes. The overall n-PCR positivity was 17.4% for spleen samples and 13.3% for lymph nodes; all liver samples resulted negative. In positive PCR foxes no signs clearly referable to leishmaniasis were recorded at necropsy. The results confirmed the presence of L. infantum infection in red foxes from Southern Italy, with a moderate level of exposure. Because large proportions of dogs with ascertained progressive leishmaniasis show a prolonged "subpatent condition" during which they are only positive to n-PCR before seroconversion, our results allow to assume that exposure risk in foxes is lower than hunting dogs living in the studied area.

  2. Modern and ancient red fox (Vulpes vulpes in Europe show an unusual lack of geographical and temporal structuring, and differing responses within the carnivores to historical climatic change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Jessica A

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite phylogeographical patterns being well characterised in a large number of species, and generalised patterns emerging, the carnivores do not all appear to show consistent trends. While some species tend to fit with standard theoretical phylogeographic expectations (e.g. bears, others show little obvious modern phylogeographic structure (e.g. wolves. In this study we briefly review these studies, and present a new phylogeographical study of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes throughout Europe, using a combination of ancient DNA sequences obtained from museum specimens, and modern sequences collated from GenBank. We used cytochrome b (250 bp and the mitochondrial control region (268 bp to elucidate both current and historical phylogeographical patterning. Results We found evidence for slight isolation by distance in modern populations, as well as differentiation associated with time, both of which can likely be attributed to random genetic drift. Despite high sequence diversity (11.2% cytochrome b, 16.4% control region, no evidence for spatial structure (from Bayesian trees is found either in modern samples or ancient samples for either gene, and Bayesian skyline plots suggested little change in the effective population size over the past 40,000 years. Conclusions It is probable that the high dispersal ability and adaptability of the red fox has contributed to the lack of observable differentiation, which appears to have remained consistent over tens of thousands of years. Generalised patterns of how animals are thought to have responded to historical climatic change are not necessarily valid for all species, and so understanding the differences between species will be critical for predicting how species will be affected by future climatic change.

  3. A Potential Tool for Swift Fox (Vulpes velox) Conservation: Individuality of Long-Range Barking Sequences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Darden, Safi-Kirstine Klem; Dabelsteen, Torben; Pedersen, Simon Boel

    2003-01-01

    Vocal individuality has been found in a number canid species. This natural variation can have applications in several aspects of species conservation, from behavioral studies to estimating population density or abundance. The swift fox (Vulpes velox) is a North American canid listed as endangered...... in Canada and extirpated, endangered, or threatened in parts of the United States. The barking sequence is a long-range vocalization in the species' vocal repertoire. It consists of a series of barks and is most common during the mating season. We analyzed barking sequences recorded in a standardized...

  4. Morphological and molecular characterization of Sarcocystis arctica-like sarcocysts from the Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus)from Alaska, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarcocystis sarcocysts are common in muscles of herbivores but are rare in muscles of carnivores. Here, we report Sarcocystis arctica-like sarcocysts in muscles of Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Alaska, USA for the first time. Tongues of 57 foxes were examined for Sarcocystis infection using sev...

  5. Gastrointestinal Parasites of Two Populations of Arctic Foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Northeast Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreassen, P.N.S.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Kapel, Christian M. O.

    2017-01-01

    Parasitological examination of 275 faecal samples from Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) collected at Zackenberg Valley and Karupelv Valley in north-east Greenland from 2006 to 2008 was conducted using sieving and microscopy. Overall, 125 (45.5%) samples contained parasite eggs of Taenia crassiceps...

  6. Pathological findings in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), stone marten (Martes foina) and raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), with special emphasis on infectious and zoonotic agents in Northern Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lempp, Charlotte; Jungwirth, Nicole; Grilo, Miguel L; Reckendorf, Anja; Ulrich, Arlena; van Neer, Abbo; Bodewes, Rogier; Pfankuche, Vanessa M; Bauer, Christian; Osterhaus, Albert D M E; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Siebert, Ursula

    2017-01-01

    Anthropogenic landscape changes contributed to the reduction of availability of habitats to wild animals. Hence, the presence of wild terrestrial carnivores in urban and peri-urban sites has increased considerably over the years implying an increased risk of interspecies spillover of infectious diseases and the transmission of zoonoses. The present study provides a detailed characterisation of the health status of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), stone marten (Martes foina) and raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) in their natural rural and peri-urban habitats in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany between November 2013 and January 2016 with focus on zoonoses and infectious diseases that are potentially threatening to other wildlife or domestic animal species. 79 red foxes, 17 stone martens and 10 raccoon dogs were collected from traps or hunts. In order to detect morphological changes and potential infectious diseases, necropsy and pathohistological work-up was performed. Additionally, in selected animals immunohistochemistry (influenza A virus, parvovirus, feline leukemia virus, Borna disease virus, tick-borne encephalitis, canine adenovirus, Neospora caninum, Toxoplasma gondii and Listeria monocytogenes), next-generation sequencing, polymerase chain reaction (fox circovirus) and serum-neutralisation analysis (canine distemper virus) were performed. Furthermore, all animals were screened for fox rabies virus (immunofluorescence), canine distemper virus (immunohistochemistry) and Aujeszky's disease (virus cultivation). The most important findings included encephalitis (n = 16) and pneumonia (n = 20). None of the investigations revealed a specific cause for the observed morphological alterations except for one animal with an elevated serum titer of 1:160 for canine distemper. Animals displayed macroscopically and/or histopathologically detectable infections with parasites, including Taenia sp., Toxocara sp. and Alaria alata. In summary, wildlife predators carry zoonotic

  7. Support for targeted sampling of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) feces in Sweden: a method to improve the probability of finding Echinococcus multilocularis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Andrea L; Olsson, Gert E; Sollenberg, Sofia; Skarin, Moa; Wahlström, Helene; Höglund, Johan

    2016-11-29

    Localized concentrations of Echinococcus multilocularis eggs from feces of infected red fox (Vulpes vulpes) can create areas of higher transmission risk for rodent hosts and possibly also for humans; therefore, identification of these areas is important. However, in a low prevalence environment, such as Sweden, these areas could be easily overlooked. As part of a project investigating the role of different rodents in the epidemiology of E. multilocularis in Sweden, fox feces were collected seasonally from rodent trapping sites in two regions with known parasite status and in two regions with unknown parasite status, 2013-2015. The aim was to evaluate background contamination in rodent trapping sites from parasite eggs in these regions. To maximize the likelihood of finding fox feces positive for the parasite, fecal collection was focused in habitats with the assumed presence of suitable rodent intermediate hosts (i.e. targeted sampling). Parasite eggs were isolated from feces through sieving-flotation, and parasite species were then confirmed using PCR and sequencing. Most samples were collected in the late winter/early spring and in open fields where both Arvicola amphibius and Microtus agrestis were captured. Fox feces positive for E. multilocularis (41/714) were found within 1-3 field collection sites within each of the four regions. The overall proportion of positive samples was low (≤5.4%) in three regions, but was significantly higher in one region (22.5%, P < 0.001). There was not a significant difference between seasons or years. Compared to previous national screenings, our sampling strategy identified multiple E. multilocularis positive feces in all four regions, including the two regions with previously unknown parasite status. These results further suggest that the distribution of E. multilocularis is highly aggregated in the environment and provide support for further development of a targeted sampling strategy. Our results show that it was

  8. Pathological findings in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes, stone marten (Martes foina and raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides, with special emphasis on infectious and zoonotic agents in Northern Germany.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlotte Lempp

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic landscape changes contributed to the reduction of availability of habitats to wild animals. Hence, the presence of wild terrestrial carnivores in urban and peri-urban sites has increased considerably over the years implying an increased risk of interspecies spillover of infectious diseases and the transmission of zoonoses. The present study provides a detailed characterisation of the health status of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes, stone marten (Martes foina and raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides in their natural rural and peri-urban habitats in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany between November 2013 and January 2016 with focus on zoonoses and infectious diseases that are potentially threatening to other wildlife or domestic animal species. 79 red foxes, 17 stone martens and 10 raccoon dogs were collected from traps or hunts. In order to detect morphological changes and potential infectious diseases, necropsy and pathohistological work-up was performed. Additionally, in selected animals immunohistochemistry (influenza A virus, parvovirus, feline leukemia virus, Borna disease virus, tick-borne encephalitis, canine adenovirus, Neospora caninum, Toxoplasma gondii and Listeria monocytogenes, next-generation sequencing, polymerase chain reaction (fox circovirus and serum-neutralisation analysis (canine distemper virus were performed. Furthermore, all animals were screened for fox rabies virus (immunofluorescence, canine distemper virus (immunohistochemistry and Aujeszky's disease (virus cultivation. The most important findings included encephalitis (n = 16 and pneumonia (n = 20. None of the investigations revealed a specific cause for the observed morphological alterations except for one animal with an elevated serum titer of 1:160 for canine distemper. Animals displayed macroscopically and/or histopathologically detectable infections with parasites, including Taenia sp., Toxocara sp. and Alaria alata. In summary, wildlife predators carry

  9. Spotlight census of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes and the domestic cat (Felis catus in three sample areas of the Marches region (Central Italy / Censimento notturno di Volpe (Vulpes vulpes e di Gatto domestico (Felis catus in tre aree campione delle Marche

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimo Pandolfi

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In order to evaluate the density of the red fox and of the domestic cat, 55 transects were made from 1986 to 1989 using spotlight census method in three sample areas. The mean density of foxes agreed substantially with its biological cycle and the hightes values (2.01 foxes/km² in spring and 4.3 foxes/km² in winter were recorded in the study area with the better natural characteristics. Foxes selected the shrub woodland (macchia all year round, the inhabited area in spring. The domestic cat was widely spread and abundant, and selected especially inhabited areas where the density varied from 4.27 cats/km² (in winter to 12.42 cat/km² (in spring. Riassunto Dal 1986 al 1989, con il metodo dei percorsi notturni con fari, sono stati effettuati complessivamente 55 conteggi in tre aree campione per valutare la densità della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes e del Gatto domestico (Felis catus nonché le loro preferenze ambientali limitatamente ad una zona campione. Per la Volpe le densità medie rilevate sono sostanzialmente in accordo con il ciclo biologico della specie e quelle più elevate (2,O1 volpi/km² in primavera e 4,3 volpi/km² in inverno sono state registrate nella zona campione con maggior presenza di boschi ed aree incolte. La Volpe seleziona le zone con vegetazione "di macchia" in ogni periodo dell'anno, e le aree abitate in primavera. Per il Gatto domestico le densità rilevate evidenziano la presenza di una diffusa ed abbondante popolazione. La specie mostra una spiccata preferenza per le aree abitate dove raggiunge densità di 4,27 individui/km² e 12,42 individui/km² in inverno e primavera rispettivamente.

  10. Ecology and ranging behaviour of Red foxes in the city of Oxford / Ecologia e comportamento della volpe (Vulpes vulpes nella città di Oxford

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Patrick Doncaster

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes living in the city of Oxford, like those in its neighbouring suburbs, are organized into social groups which each defend a territory. While territories in the suburbs are spatially stable, those in the city continually drift in location. They move in synchrony with their neighbours and the prevailing pattern is a honeycomb of group ranges of relatively small but constant size. The city environment is characterized by a high level of disturbance, which may favour range mobility, and by a patchy and highly divided mosaic of habitats. A quantification of patch density leads us to propose an explanation for the small size of territories and the existence of more adults than a single pair, in terms of the dispersion of habitat patches and competition for food resources contained therein. Riassunto Le popolazioni di Volpe (Vulpes vulpes insediate nella città di Oxford e nelle aree suburbane limitrofe sono organizzate in gruppi sociali che difendono un proprio territorio. Mentre i territori nelle aree suburbane sono spazialmente stabili, quelli presenti in città cambiano continuamente posizione. Questi ultimi si muovono sincronicamente con quelli limitrofi e la disposizione prevalente è simile al favo delle api con territori relativamente piccoli, ma di dimensioni costanti. L'ambiente cittadino è caratterizzato da elevato disturbo, che può favorire la mobilita dei territori, e da un mosaico molto vario di ambienti. La presenza di territori di ridotte dimensioni occupati da più adulti e non da una singola coppia di volpi sembra dipendere dall'alternanza e variabilità degli ambienti e dalla competizione per le risorse alimentari.

  11. Gastrointestinal Parasites of Two Populations of Arctic Foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Northeast Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreassen, P.N.S.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Kapel, Christian M. O.

    2017-01-01

    Parasitological examination of 275 faecal samples from Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) collected at Zackenberg Valley and Karupelv Valley in north-east Greenland from 2006 to 2008 was conducted using sieving and microscopy. Overall, 125 (45.5%) samples contained parasite eggs of Taenia crassiceps......, Taenia serialis, Toxascaris leonina, Eucoleus boehmi, Physalopteridae and Ancylostomatidae, and Strongyloides-like larvae. As long-term ecological studies are conducted at both sampling locations, the present findings constitute a baseline data set for further parasitological monitoring....

  12. Vulpes ferrilata

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    fore, we present our study on isolation of microsatellite loci in the Tibetan fox in this ... ing 0.5 μM forward primer (5 modified with FAM, HEX or. TAMRA), 0.5 μM ..... Liu Q. X., Harris R. B. and Wang X. M. 2010 Food habits of the. Tibetan fox ...

  13. Death feigning by ducks in response to predation by red foxes (Vulpes fulva)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.; Eberhardt, L.E.

    1975-01-01

    Predation by captive red foxes (Vulpes fulva) on approximately 50 ducks comprised of five species was observed in tests conducted at the Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center, Jamestown, North Dakota. Most ducks were attacked from a rear or lateral position and seized in the cervical or thoracic region. All birds became immobile (death-feigned) immediately when seized and with few exceptions remained motionless during prey-handling and for varying lengths of time thereafter. Initial death feints lasted from 20 sec to 14 min. Recovery was delayed by tactile, visual and, possibly, auditory cues from the foxes. Death-feigning birds appeared alert and often took advantage of escape opportunities. Twenty-nine birds survived initial capture and handling by the foxes. Naive foxes were wary of ducks during initial confrontations, but experienced foxes showed little hesitation in attacking them. After capture, most ducks were taken alive to lay-down sites where they were mouthed and often killed. Then the ducks were usually cached or taken to dens or pups. Several birds were cached alive. Red foxes appear to have adapted to the escape of death-feigning ducks by learning to kill some birds soon after capture and by the evolution of an appendage-severing behavior. Death feigning appears to be a highly developed antipredator behavior of ducks that facilitates the escape of some birds after capture by red foxes.

  14. Fine-scale population genetic structure of arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) in the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Sandra; Quiles, Adrien; Lambourdière, Josie; Berteaux, Dominique; Lalis, Aude

    2017-12-01

    The arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) is a circumpolar species inhabiting all accessible Arctic tundra habitats. The species forms a panmictic population over areas connected by sea ice, but recently, kin clustering and population differentiation were detected even in regions where sea ice was present. The purpose of this study was to examine the genetic structure of a population in the High Arctic using a robust panel of highly polymorphic microsatellites. We analyzed the genotypes of 210 individuals from Bylot Island, Nunavut, Canada, using 15 microsatellite loci. No pattern of isolation-by-distance was detected, but a spatial principal component analysis (sPCA) revealed the presence of genetic subdivisions. Overall, the sPCA revealed two spatially distinct genetic clusters corresponding to the northern and southern parts of the study area, plus another subdivision within each of these two clusters. The north-south genetic differentiation partly matched the distribution of a snow goose colony, which could reflect a preference for settling into familiar ecological environments. Secondary clusters may result from higher-order social structures (neighbourhoods) that use landscape features to delimit their borders. The cryptic genetic subdivisions found in our population may highlight ecological processes deserving further investigations in arctic foxes at larger, regional spatial scales.

  15. Seasonal food habits of swift fox (Vulpes velox) in cropland and rangeland landscapes in western Kansas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sovada, M.A.; Roy, C.C.; Telesco, D.J.

    2001-01-01

    Food habits of swift foxes (Vulpes velox) occupying two distinct landscapes (dominated by cropland versus rangeland) in western Kansas were determined by analysis of scats collected in 1993 and 1996. Frequencies of occurrence of prey items in scats were compared between cropland and rangeland areas by season. Overall, the most frequently occurring foods of swift foxes were mammals (92% of all scats) and arthropods (87%), followed by birds (24%), carrion (23%), plants (15%) and reptiles (4%). No differences were detected between landscapes for occurrence of mammals, arthropods or carrion in any season (P ≥ 0.100). Plants, specifically commercial sunflower seeds, were consumed more frequently in cropland than in rangeland in spring (P = 0.004) and fall (P = 0.001). Birds were more common in the swift fox diet in cropland than in rangeland during the fall (P = 0.008), whereas reptiles occurred more frequently in the diet in rangeland than in cropland during spring (P = 0.042). Variation in the diet of the swift fox between areas was most likely due to its opportunistic foraging behavior, resulting in a diet that closely links prey use with availability.

  16. Diets of swift foxes (Vulpes velox) in continuous and fragmented prairie in Northwestern Texas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamler, J.F.; Ballard, W.B.; Wallace, M.C.; Gipson, P.S.

    2007-01-01

    Distribution of the swift fox (Vulpes velox) has declined dramatically since the 1800s, and suggested causes of this decline are habitat fragmentation and transformation due to agricultural expansion. However, impacts of fragmentation and human-altered habitats on swift foxes still are not well understood. To better understand what effects these factors have on diets of swift foxes, scats were collected in northwestern Texas at two study sites, one of continuous native prairie and one representing fragmented native prairie interspersed with agricultural and fields in the Conservation Reserve Program. Leporids, a potential food source, were surveyed seasonally on both sites. Diets of swift foxes differed between sites; insects were consumed more on continuous prairie, whereas mammals, birds, and crops were consumed more on fragmented prairie. Size of populations of leporids were 2-3 times higher on fragmented prairie, and swift foxes responded by consuming more leporids on fragmented (11.1% frequency occurrence) than continuous (3.8%) prairie. Dietary diversity was greater on fragmented prairie during both years of the study. Differences in diets between sites suggested that the swift fox is an adaptable and opportunistic feeder, able to exploit a variety of food resources, probably in relation to availability of food. We suggest that compared to continuous native prairie, fragmented prairie can offer swift foxes a more diverse prey base, at least within the mosaic of native prairie, agricultural, and fields that are in the Conservation Reserve Program.

  17. Den site activity patterns of adult male and female swift foxes, Vulpes velox, in Northwestern Texas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemons, P.R.; Ballard, W.B.; Sullivan, R.M.; Sovada, M.A.

    2003-01-01

    Activity of Swift Foxes (Vulpes velox) at den sites was studied in northwestern Texas during pup rearing seasons in 2000 and 2001 to determine role of males in parental care. Twenty-four percent of radio-collared females with a potential to breed successfully raised pups to eight weeks of age. We intensively monitored presence and absence of male and female Swift Foxes at two den sites each year. Females were present >2.6 times more at den sites than males during the pup rearing season. Female and male Swift Foxes largely stayed at dens during diurnal hours and were active away from dens during nocturnal and crepuscular hours. Females and males spent 12.4% and 3.0% more time at dens before pups emerged, than after pups emerged, respectively. Following depredation of one male parent, the female spent 29% less time at the den site. Decrease in time spent at the den by the female following loss of her mate suggested that loss of one parent might severely impact recruitment of Swift Foxes. Our observations indicated that intense Coyote (Canis latrans) depredation may severely impact pup-rearing success as well as the parental care within Swift Fox family groups.

  18. Factors affecting the distribution of fox dens in northern Italy / Fattori influenzanti la distribuzione delle tane di volpe (Vulpes vulpes in Italia settentrionale

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Meriggi

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract From 1st. October to 31st. December 1988 the fox dens were censused in an area of 2,589 km² in Northern Italy. The mean density was 0.67 dens/km². Significant differences resulted between the density found in the four altitudinal ranges: plain 0.28 dens/km² (S.D.=0.30; low hill 0.71/km² (S.D.=0.37; middle hill 1.20/km² (S.D.=0.35; mountain 0.41/km² (S.D.=0.42. The highest densities were recorded in protected areas (0.98 dens/km², while the lowest values were found in hunting areas (0.41/km² in social hunting ground and 0.33/km² in estates. The density was positively correlated with the mean altitude (r=0.443, PRiassunto Dal 1 ottobre al 31 dicembre 1988 sono state censite le tane di Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in provincia di Piacenza (2.589 km², 48 comuni. La densità media provinciale è stata di 0,67 tane/km². Differenze significative sono risultate tra le densità delle 4 fasce altimetriche della provincia: pianura 0,28/km² (D.S.=0

  19. Ultra structure differentiation of the anterior pituitary cells of the adult female non pregnant carnivore Vulpes zerda

    OpenAIRE

    Selim, Atteyat; El Nahass, Eman

    2016-01-01

    The pituitary gland of carnivore mammals in the world was described, but that of those in Egypt may be low, so the present study is carried out on some carnivore mammals such as Vulpes zerda, to elucidate the similarities and the differences of the pituitary cells between the mammals in the world and those in Egypt. The results indicate that, the gland is pyramidal in shape. The acidophilic cells and the basophilic cells are distributed heterogeneously in the body of the gland. The STH cells ...

  20. Correlates between feeding ecology and mercury levels in historical and modern arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalia Bocharova

    Full Text Available Changes in concentration of pollutants and pathogen distribution can vary among ecotypes (e.g. marine versus terrestrial food resources. This may have important implications for the animals that reside within them. We examined 1 canid pathogen presence in an endangered arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus population and 2 relative total mercury (THg level as a function of ecotype ('coastal' or 'inland' for arctic foxes to test whether the presence of pathogens or heavy metal concentration correlate with population health. The Bering Sea populations on Bering and Mednyi Islands were compared to Icelandic arctic fox populations with respect to inland and coastal ecotypes. Serological and DNA based pathogen screening techniques were used to examine arctic foxes for pathogens. THg was measured by atomic absorption spectrometry from hair samples of historical and modern collected arctic foxes and samples from their prey species (hair and internal organs. Presence of pathogens did not correlate with population decline from Mednyi Island. However, THg concentration correlated strongly with ecotype and was reflected in the THg concentrations detected in available food sources in each ecotype. The highest concentration of THg was found in ecotypes where foxes depended on marine vertebrates for food. Exclusively inland ecotypes had low THg concentrations. The results suggest that absolute exposure to heavy metals may be less important than the feeding ecology and feeding opportunities of top predators such as arctic foxes which may in turn influence population health and stability. A higher risk to wildlife of heavy metal exposure correlates with feeding strategies that rely primarily on a marine based diet.

  1. Correlates between feeding ecology and mercury levels in historical and modern arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocharova, Natalia; Treu, Gabriele; Czirják, Gábor Árpád; Krone, Oliver; Stefanski, Volker; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Unnsteinsdóttir, Ester Rut; Hersteinsson, Páll; Schares, Gereon; Doronina, Lilia; Goltsman, Mikhail; Greenwood, Alex D

    2013-01-01

    Changes in concentration of pollutants and pathogen distribution can vary among ecotypes (e.g. marine versus terrestrial food resources). This may have important implications for the animals that reside within them. We examined 1) canid pathogen presence in an endangered arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) population and 2) relative total mercury (THg) level as a function of ecotype ('coastal' or 'inland') for arctic foxes to test whether the presence of pathogens or heavy metal concentration correlate with population health. The Bering Sea populations on Bering and Mednyi Islands were compared to Icelandic arctic fox populations with respect to inland and coastal ecotypes. Serological and DNA based pathogen screening techniques were used to examine arctic foxes for pathogens. THg was measured by atomic absorption spectrometry from hair samples of historical and modern collected arctic foxes and samples from their prey species (hair and internal organs). Presence of pathogens did not correlate with population decline from Mednyi Island. However, THg concentration correlated strongly with ecotype and was reflected in the THg concentrations detected in available food sources in each ecotype. The highest concentration of THg was found in ecotypes where foxes depended on marine vertebrates for food. Exclusively inland ecotypes had low THg concentrations. The results suggest that absolute exposure to heavy metals may be less important than the feeding ecology and feeding opportunities of top predators such as arctic foxes which may in turn influence population health and stability. A higher risk to wildlife of heavy metal exposure correlates with feeding strategies that rely primarily on a marine based diet.

  2. Patterns of MHC-DRB1 polymorphism in a post-glacial island canid, the Newfoundland red fox (Vulpes vulpes deletrix), suggest balancing selection at species and population timescales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, H Dawn; Langille, Barbara L; Hann, Crystal A; Whitney, Hugh G

    2016-05-01

    As the only native insular Newfoundland canid between the extinction of the wolf in the 1930s and the recent arrival of coyotes, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes deletrix Bangs 1898) poses interesting questions about genetic distinctiveness and the post-glacial colonization history of the island's depauperate mammalian fauna. Here, we characterized genetic variability at the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II DR β1 domain (DRB1) locus in 28 red foxes from six sampling localities island-wide and compared it with mitochondrial control region (CR) diversity and DRB1 diversity in other canids. Our goals were to describe novel DRB1 alleles in a new canid population and to make inferences about the role of selection in maintaining their diversity. As in numerous studies of vertebrates, we found an order-of-magnitude higher nucleotide diversity at the DRB1 locus compared with the CR and significantly positive nonsynonymous-to-synonymous substitution ratios, indicative of selection in the distant past. Although the evidence is weaker, the Ewens-Watterson test of neutrality and the geographical distribution of variation compared with the CR suggest a role for selection over the evolutionary timescale of populations. We report the first genetic data from the DRB1 locus in the red fox and establish baseline information regarding immunogenetic variation in this island canid population which should inform continued investigations of population demography, adaptive genetic diversity, and wildlife disease in red foxes and related species.

  3. Sound transmission at ground level in a short-grass prairie habitat and its implications for long-range communication in the swift fox Vulpes velox

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Darden, Safi K; Pedersen, Simon B; Larsen, Ole N

    2008-01-01

    The acoustic environment of swift foxes Vulpes velox vocalizing close to the ground and the effect of propagation on individual identity information in vocalizations were quantified in a transmission experiment in prairie habitat. Sounds were propagated (0.45 m above the ground) at distances up t...

  4. Detection and genetic characterization of tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) derived from ticks removed from red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and isolated from spleen samples of red deer (Cervus elaphus) in Croatia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jemeršić, Lorena; Dežđek, Danko; Brnić, Dragan; Prpić, Jelena; Janicki, Zdravko; Keros, Tomislav; Roić, Besi; Slavica, Alen; Terzić, Svjetlana; Konjević, Dean; Beck, Relja

    2014-02-01

    Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) is a growing public health concern in central and northern European countries. Even though TBE is a notifiable disease in Croatia, there is a significant lack of information in regard to vector tick identification, distribution as well as TBE virus prevalence in ticks or animals. The aim of our study was to identify and to investigate the viral prevalence of TBE virus in ticks removed from red fox (Vulpes vulpes) carcasses hunted in endemic areas in northern Croatia and to gain a better insight in the role of wild ungulates, especially red deer (Cervus elaphus) in the maintenance of the TBE virus in the natural cycle. We identified 5 tick species (Ixodes ricinus, Ixodes hexagonus, Haemaphysalis punctata, Dermacentor reticulatus, Rhipicephalus sanguineus) removed from 40 red foxes. However, TBE virus was isolated only from adult I. ricinus and I. hexagonus ticks showing a viral prevalence (1.6%) similar to or higher than reported in endemic areas of other European countries. Furthermore, 2 positive spleen samples from 182 red deer (1.1%) were found. Croatian TBE virus isolates were genetically analyzed, and they were shown to be closely related, all belonging to the European TBE virus subgroup. However, on the basis of nucleotide and amino acid sequence analysis, 2 clusters were identified. Our results show that further investigation is needed to understand the clustering of isolates and to identify the most common TBE virus reservoir hosts in Croatia. Sentinel surveys based on wild animal species would give a better insight in defining TBE virus-endemic and possible risk areas in Croatia. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier GmbH.

  5. Mineral density and biomechanical properties of bone tissue from male Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) exposed to organochlorine contaminants and emaciation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sonne, Christian; Wolkers, Hans; Rigét, Frank F

    2008-01-01

    We investigated the impact from dietary OC (organochlorine) exposure and restricted feeding (emaciation) on bone mineral density (BMD; g hydroxy-apatite cm(-2)) in femoral, vertebrate, skull and baculum osteoid tissue from farmed Arctic blue foxes (Vulpes lagopus). For femur, also biomechanical......), energy absorption (J) and time (s) biomechanical properties than fat winter foxes (all pArctic mammals also in order to avoid...... properties during bending (displacement [mm], load [N], energy absorption [J] and stiffness [N/mm]) were measured. Sixteen foxes (EXP) were fed a wet food containing 7.7% OC-polluted minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) blubber in two periods of body fat deposition (Aug-Dec) and two periods of body fat...

  6. Mineral density and biomechanical properties of bone tissue from male Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) exposed to organochlorine contaminants and emaciation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sonne, Christian; Wolkers, Hans; Rigét, Frank F

    2008-01-01

    We investigated the impact from dietary OC (organochlorine) exposure and restricted feeding (emaciation) on bone mineral density (BMD; g hydroxy-apatite cm(-2)) in femoral, vertebrate, skull and baculum osteoid tissue from farmed Arctic blue foxes (Vulpes lagopus). For femur, also biomechanical......), energy absorption (J) and time (s) biomechanical properties than fat winter foxes (all pbones from fasting which is in agreement with previous studies. Further, it should be kept in mind when studying bone tissues in Arctic mammals also in order to avoid...... tissue of ca. 1700 ng/g live mass in the 8 EXP fat foxes euthanized after 16 months. A control group (CON) composed of 15 foxes were fed equal daily caloric amounts of clean pork (Sus scrofa) fat. After 16 months, 8 EXP and 7 CON foxes were euthanized (mean body mass=9.25 kg) while the remaining 8 EXP...

  7. The complete mitochondrial genome of the Tibetan fox (Vulpes ferrilata) and implications for the phylogeny of Canidae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Chao; Zhang, Honghai; Liu, Guangshuai; Yang, Xiufeng; Zhang, Jin

    2016-02-01

    Canidae is a family of carnivores comprises about 36 extant species that have been defined as three distinct monophyletic groups based on multi-gene data sets. The Tibetan fox (Vulpes ferrilata) is a member of the family Canidae that is endemic to the Tibetan Plateau and has seldom been in the focus of phylogenetic analyses. To clarify the phylogenic relationship of V. ferrilata between other canids, we sequenced the mitochondrial genome and firstly attempted to clarify the relative phylogenetic position of V. ferrilata in canids using the complete mitochondrial genome data. The mitochondrial genome of the Tibetan fox was 16,667 bp, including 37 genes (13 protein-coding genes, 2 rRNA, and 22 tRNA) and a control region. A comparison analysis among the sequenced data of canids indicated that they shared a similar arrangement, codon usage, and other aspects. A phylogenetic analysis on the basis of the nearly complete mtDNA genomes of canids agreed with three monophyletic clades, and the Tibetan fox was highly supported as a sister group of the corsac fox within Vulpes. The estimation of the divergence time suggested a recent split between the Tibetan fox and the corsac fox and rapid evolution in canids. There was no genetic evidence for positive selection related to high-altitude adaption for the Tibetan fox in mtDNA and following studies should pay more attention to the detection of positive signals in nuclear genes involved in energy and oxygen metabolisms. Copyright © 2015 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Serologic responses after vaccination of fennec foxes (Vulpes zerda) and meerkats (Suricata suricatta) with a live, canarypox-vectored canine distemper virus vaccine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coke, Rob L; Backues, Kay A; Hoover, John P; Saliki, Jeremiah T; Ritchey, Jerry W; West, Gary D

    2005-06-01

    Fennec foxes (Vulpes zerda) and meerkats (Suricata suricatta) are considered to be susceptible to canine distemper virus (CDV) infection. Although no definitive clinical cases of natural CDV infections have been reported, mortalities due to CDV have been suspected and are reported in other closely related species. A commercially available monovalent, live, canarypox-vectored CDV vaccine induced neutralizing antibody titers that were maintained for at least a year in both fennec foxes and meerkats.

  9. Counts of fox breeding dens in a riverine area of Northern Italy / Conteggio delle tane riproduttive di Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in un'area golenale dell'Italia settentrionale

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudio Prigioni

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract From 1982 to 1986 the fox breeding dens were counted over areas ranging from 37 to 188 km² of the Ticino Park (Lombardy region. Eighty-eight breeding dens were found, of which 84.1% was along the wooded slopes of the river valley, 12.5% on the edge of woods, and 3.4% on the edge of poplar plantations. Breeding foxes used almost exclusively deserted setts of Meles meles and burrows of Oryctolagus cuniculus. The mean density was 0.22 dens/km² (min-max: 0.0-1.0 dens/km² and the highest values were found in agricoltura1 areas with wooded slopes of the river valley (1.0 dens/km² and in mixed woods with prevailing Quercus robur and Carpinus betulus (0.5 dens/km². The density of breeding dens does not seem to be influenced by the presence of protected areas and by the density of hares and of pheasants. Riassunto La ricerca delle tane riproduttive di Volpe Vulpes vulpes è stata effettuata nel periodo 1982-86 nel Parco Lombardo della Valle del Ticino e ogni anno ha interessato una superficie variabile da 37 a 188 km². Su un totale di 88 tane rilevate, l'84,1% è stato rinvenuto lungo le scarpate dei terrazzi fluviali, il 12,5% al margine di boschi golenali e il 3,4% al margine di pioppeti. La Volpe utilizza quasi esclusivamente le tane abbandonate dal Tasso e quelle del Coniglio selvatico. La densità media di tane riproduttive è stata di 0,22 tane/km² (min-max: 0,O-1,0 tane/km² e i valori più elevati sono stati riscontrati in zone agricole con presenza di scarpate boscate (1,O tane/km² e in zone con boschi a prevalenza di Farnia e Carpino bianco (0,5 tane/km². Le densità trovate in aree protette non differiscono significativamente da quelle rilevate in aree in cui l'esercizio venatorio è consentito e non sembrano essere influenzate positivamente dalla densità di specie di particolare interesse venatorio come la Lepre e il Fagiano.

  10. A semi-automated magnetic capture probe based DNA extraction and real-time PCR method applied in the Swedish surveillance of Echinococcus multilocularis in red fox (Vulpes vulpes) faecal samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaksson, Mats; Hagström, Åsa; Armua-Fernandez, Maria Teresa; Wahlström, Helene; Ågren, Erik Olof; Miller, Andrea; Holmberg, Anders; Lukacs, Morten; Casulli, Adriano; Deplazes, Peter; Juremalm, Mikael

    2014-12-19

    Following the first finding of Echinococcus multilocularis in Sweden in 2011, 2985 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) were analysed by the segmental sedimentation and counting technique. This is a labour intensive method and requires handling of the whole carcass of the fox, resulting in a costly analysis. In an effort to reduce the cost of labour and sample handling, an alternative method has been developed. The method is sensitive and partially automated for detection of E. multilocularis in faecal samples. The method has been used in the Swedish E. multilocularis monitoring program for 2012-2013 on more than 2000 faecal samples. We describe a new semi-automated magnetic capture probe DNA extraction method and real time hydrolysis probe polymerase chain reaction assay (MC-PCR) for the detection of E. multilocularis DNA in faecal samples from red fox. The diagnostic sensitivity was determined by validating the new method against the sedimentation and counting technique in fox samples collected in Switzerland where E. multilocularis is highly endemic. Of 177 foxes analysed by the sedimentation and counting technique, E. multilocularis was detected in 93 animals. Eighty-two (88%, 95% C.I 79.8-93.9) of these were positive in the MC-PCR. In foxes with more than 100 worms, the MC-PCR was positive in 44 out of 46 (95.7%) cases. The two MC-PCR negative samples originated from foxes with only immature E. multilocularis worms. In foxes with 100 worms or less, (n = 47), 38 (80.9%) were positive in the MC-PCR. The diagnostic specificity of the MC-PCR was evaluated using fox scats collected within the Swedish screening. Of 2158 samples analysed, two were positive. This implies that the specificity is at least 99.9% (C.I. = 99.7-100). The MC-PCR proved to have a high sensitivity and a very high specificity. The test is partially automated but also possible to perform manually if desired. The test is well suited for nationwide E. multilocularis surveillance programs where sampling

  11. Blood characteristics of San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes velox macrotis) at Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Standley, W.G.; McCue, P.M.

    1992-09-01

    Hematology, serum chemistry, and prevalence of antibodies against selected, pathogens in a San Joaquin kit fox population (Vulpes velox macrotis) were investigated at Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site, California, in 1989 and 1990. Samples from 18 (10 female, 8 male) adult kit foxes were used to establish normal hematology and serum chemistry values for this population. Average values were all within the normal ranges reported for kit foxes in other locations. Three hematology parameters had significant differences between male and female values; males had higher total white blood cell and neutrophil counts, and lower lymphocyte counts. There were no significant differences between serum chemistry values from male and female foxes. Prevalence of antibodies was determined from serum samples from 47 (26 female, 21 male) adult kit foxes and eight (4 female, 4 male) juveniles. Antibodies were detected against five of the eight pathogens tested: canine parvovirus, Toxoplasma gondii Leptospira interrogans, canine distemper virus, and canine hepatitis virus. Antibodies were not detected against Brucella, canis, Coccidioides immitis, or Yersinia pestis.

  12. Reproduction of the San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes velox macrotis) on Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site, California

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spencer, K.A.; Berry, W.H.; Standley, W.G.; O'Farrell, T.P.

    1992-09-01

    The reproduction of a San Joaquin kit fox population (Vulpes velox macrotis) was investigated at Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site, California, from November 1988 through September 1991. Of 38 vixens radiocollared prior to parturition, 12 (32%) were successful in raising pups from conception to the point where pups were observed above ground. No yearling vixens were known tb be reproductively active. The mean litter size during 1989 - 1991 was 3.0 (n = 21, SE = 0.28) and ranged from one to six pups. Both the proportion of vixens successfully raising pups and the mean litter size observed at Camp Roberts during this study were lower than those reported at other locations. Sex ratios of kit fox pups were male biased two of the three years, but did not differ statistically from 1:1 throughout the study. Whelping was estimated to occur between February 15 and March 5. Results of this study support previous reports that kit foxes are primarily monogamous, although one case of polygamy may have occurred. Both the proportion of dispersing radiocollared juveniles (26%) and the mean dispersal distance (5.9 km) of juveniles at Camp Roberts appeared low compared to other locations

  13. Re-colonization by common eiders Somateria mollissima in the Aleutian Archipelago following removal of introduced arctic foxes Vulpes lagopus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Margaret R.; Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Sexson, Matthew G.

    2015-01-01

    Islands provide refuges for populations of many species where they find safety from predators, but the introduction of predators frequently results in elimination or dramatic reductions in island-dwelling organisms. When predators are removed, re-colonization for some species occurs naturally, and inter-island phylogeographic relationships and current movement patterns can illuminate processes of colonization. We studied a case of re-colonization of common eiders Somateria mollissima following removal of introduced arctic foxes Vulpes lagopus in the Aleutian Archipelago, Alaska. We expected common eiders to resume nesting on islands cleared of foxes and to re-colonize from nearby islets, islands, and island groups. We thus expected common eiders to show limited genetic structure indicative of extensive mixing among island populations. Satellite telemetry was used to record current movement patterns of female common eiders from six islands across three island groups. We collected genetic data from these and other nesting common eiders at 14 microsatellite loci and the mitochondrial DNA control region to examine population genetic structure, historical fluctuations in population demography, and gene flow. Our results suggest recent interchange among islands. Analysis of microsatellite data supports satellite telemetry data of increased dispersal of common eiders to nearby areas and little between island groups. Although evidence from mtDNA is suggestive of female dispersal among island groups, gene flow is insufficient to account for recolonization and rapid population growth. Instead, near-by remnant populations of common eiders contributed substantially to population expansion, without which re-colonization would have likely occurred at a much lower rate. Genetic and morphometric data of common eiders within one island group two and three decades after re-colonization suggests reduced movement of eiders among islands and little movement between island groups after

  14. Mineral density and biomechanical properties of bone tissue from male Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) exposed to organochlorine contaminants and emaciation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonne, Christian; Wolkers, Hans; Rigét, Frank F; Jensen, Jens-Erik Beck; Teilmann, Jenni; Jenssen, Bjørn Munro; Fuglei, Eva; Ahlstrøm, Øystein; Dietz, Rune; Muir, Derek C G; Jørgensen, Even H

    2009-01-01

    We investigated the impact from dietary OC (organochlorine) exposure and restricted feeding (emaciation) on bone mineral density (BMD; g hydroxy-apatite cm(-2)) in femoral, vertebrate, skull and baculum osteoid tissue from farmed Arctic blue foxes (Vulpes lagopus). For femur, also biomechanical properties during bending (displacement [mm], load [N], energy absorption [J] and stiffness [N/mm]) were measured. Sixteen foxes (EXP) were fed a wet food containing 7.7% OC-polluted minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) blubber in two periods of body fat deposition (Aug-Dec) and two periods of body fat mobilisation (Jan-July) in which the food contained less energy and only 2% blubber. SigmaOC food concentration in the food containing 7.7% whale blubber was 309 ng/g wet mass. This corresponded to a SigmaOC exposure of ca. 17 microg/kg body mass/d and a responding SigmaOC residue in subcutaneous adipose tissue of ca. 1700 ng/g live mass in the 8 EXP fat foxes euthanized after 16 months. A control group (CON) composed of 15 foxes were fed equal daily caloric amounts of clean pork (Sus scrofa) fat. After 16 months, 8 EXP and 7 CON foxes were euthanized (mean body mass=9.25 kg) while the remaining 8 EXP and 8 CON foxes were given restricted food rations for 6 months resulting in a body weight reduction (mean body mass=5.46 kg). The results showed that only BMD(skull) vs. BMD(vertebrae) were significantly correlated (R=0.68; p=0.03; n=10) probably due to a similar composition of trabecular and cortical osteoid tissue. No difference in any of the BMD measurements or femoral biomechanical properties was found between EXP and CON foxes although BMD baculum was 1.6-folds lower in the EXP group. However, lean summer foxes had significantly lower femoral biomechanical properties measured as displacement (mm), energy absorption (J) and time (s) biomechanical properties than fat winter foxes (all pbones from fasting which is in agreement with previous studies. Further, it should be

  15. Dietary contaminant exposure affects plasma testosterone, but not thyroid hormones, vitamin A, and vitamin E, in male juvenile arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallanger, Ingeborg G; Jørgensen, Even H; Fuglei, Eva; Ahlstrøm, Øystein; Muir, Derek C G; Jenssen, Bjørn Munro

    2012-01-01

    Levels of persistent organic pollutants (POP), such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB), are high in many Arctic top predators, including the Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus). The aim of this study was to examine possible endocrine-disruptive effects of dietary POP exposure in male juvenile Arctic foxes in a controlled exposure experiment. The study was conducted using domesticated farmed blue foxes (Vulpes lagopus) as a model species. Two groups of newly weaned male foxes received a diet supplemented with either minke whale (Baleneoptera acutorostrata) blubber that was naturally contaminated with POP (exposed group, n = 5 or 21), or pork (Sus scrofa) fat (control group, n = 5 or 21). When the foxes were 6 mo old and had received the 2 diets for approximately 4 mo (147 d), effects of the dietary exposure to POP on plasma concentrations of testosterone (T), thyroid hormones (TH), thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), retinol (vitamin A), and tocopherol (viramin E) were examined. At sampling, the total body concentrations of 104 PCB congeners were 0.1 ± 0.03 μg/g lipid weight (l.w.; n = 5 [mean ± standard deviation]) and 1.5 ± 0.17 μg/g l.w. (n = 5) in the control and exposed groups, respectively. Plasma testosterone concentrations in the exposed male foxes were significantly lower than in the control males, being approximately 25% of that in the exposed foxes. There were no between-treatment differences for TH, TSH, retinol, or tocopherol. The results suggest that the high POP levels experienced by costal populations of Arctic foxes, such as in Svalbard and Iceland, may result in delayed masculine maturation during adolescence. Sex hormone disruption during puberty may thus have lifetime consequences on all aspects of reproductive function in adult male foxes.

  16. Effects of military-authorized activities on the San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes velox macrotis) at Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berry, W.H.; Standley, W.G.; O`Farrell, T.P.; Kato, T.T.

    1992-10-01

    The effects of military-authorized activities on San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes velox macrotis) were investigated at Camp Roberts Army National Guard Training Site from 1988 to 1991. Military-authorized activities included military training exercises, facilities maintenance, new construction, controlled burning, livestock grazing, and public-access hunting. Positive effects of the military included habitat preservation, preactivity surveys, and natural resources management practices designed to conserve kit foxes and their habitat. Perceived negative effects such as entrapment in dens, shootings during military exercises, and accidental poisoning were not observed. Foxes were observed in areas being used simultaneously by military units. Authorized activities were known to have caused the deaths of three of 52 radiocollared foxes recovered dead: one became entangled in concertina wire, one was believed shot by a hunter, and one was struck by a vehicle. Entanglement in communication wire may have contributed to the death of another radiocollared fox that was killed by a predator. Approximately 10% of kit fox dens encountered showed evidence of vehicle traffic, but denning sites did not appear to be a limiting factor for kit foxes.

  17. Serologic survey for disease in endangered San Joaquin kit fox, Vulpes macrotis mutica, inhabiting the Elk Hills Naval Petroleum Reserve, Kern County, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCue, P.M.; O' Farrell, T.P.

    1986-07-01

    Serum from endangered San Joaquin kit foxes, Vulpes macrotis mutica, and sympatric wildlife inhabiting the Elk Hills Petroleum Reserve, Kern County, and Elkhorn Plain, San Luis Obispo County, California, was collected in 1981 to 1982 and 1984, and tested for antibodies against 10 infectious disease pathogens. Proportions of kit fox sera containing antibodies against diseases were: canine parvovirus, 100% in 1981 to 1982 and 67% in 1984; infectious canine hepatitis, 6% in 1981 to 1982 and 21% in 1984; canine distemper, 0 in 1981 to 1982 and 14% in 1984; tularemia, 8% in 1981 to 1982 and 31% in 1984; Brucella abortus, 8% in 1981 to 1982 and 3% in 1984; Brucella canis, 14% in 1981 to 1982 and 0 in 1984; toxoplasmosis, 6% in 1981 to 1982; coccidioidomycosis, 3% in 1981 to 1982; and plague and leptospirosis, 0 in 1981 to 1982. High population density, overlapping home ranges, ability to disperse great distances, and infestation by ectoparasites were cited as possible factors in the transmission and maintenance of these diseases in kit fox populations.

  18. Levels and temporal trends of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Svalbard in relation to dietary habits and food availability

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andersen, Martin S. [Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre, NO-9296 Tromsø (Norway); Department of Arctic and Marine Biology, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, NO-9037 Tromsø (Norway); Fuglei, Eva; König, Max [Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre, NO-9296 Tromsø (Norway); Lipasti, Inka [Department of Biology, University of Eastern Finland, FI-80101 Joensuu (Finland); Pedersen, Åshild Ø. [Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre, NO-9296 Tromsø (Norway); Polder, Anuschka [Department of Food Safety and Infection Biology, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, P.O. Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås (Norway); Yoccoz, Nigel G. [Department of Arctic and Marine Biology, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, NO-9037 Tromsø (Norway); Routti, Heli, E-mail: heli.routti@npolar.no [Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre, NO-9296 Tromsø (Norway)

    2015-04-01

    Temporal trends of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Svalbard, Norway, were investigated in relation to feeding habits and seasonal food availability. Arctic foxes from Svalbard forage in both marine and terrestrial ecosystems and the availability of their food items are impacted by climatic variability. Concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorinated pesticides (OCPs) and brominated flame retardants (polybrominated diphenyl ethers [PBDEs] and hexabromocyclododecane [HBCDD]) were analyzed in the liver of 141 arctic foxes collected between 1997 and 2013. Stable carbon isotope values (δ{sup 13}C) were used as a proxy for feeding on marine versus terrestrial prey. The annual number of recovered reindeer carcasses and sea ice cover were used as proxies for climate influenced food availability (reindeers, seals). Linear models revealed that concentrations of PCBs, chlordanes, p,p′-DDE, mirex and PBDEs decreased 4–11% per year, while no trends were observed for hexachlorobenzene (HCB) or β-hexachlorocyclohexane (β-HCH). Positive relationships between POP concentrations and δ{sup 13}C indicate that concentrations of all compounds increase with increasing marine dietary input. Increasing reindeer mortality was related to lower HCB concentrations in the foxes based on the linear models. This suggests that concentrations of HCB in arctic foxes may be influenced by high mortality levels of Svalbard reindeer. Further, β-HCH concentrations showed a positive association with sea ice cover. These results in addition to the strong effect of δ{sup 13}C on all POP concentrations suggest that climate-related changes in arctic fox diet are likely to influence contaminant concentrations in arctic foxes from Svalbard. - Highlights: • POPs were analyzed in the arctic foxes' liver (n = 141) from Svalbard collected in 1997–2013. • PCBs, chlordanes, p,p′-DDE, mirex and PBDEs decreased 4–11% per year.

  19. Levels and temporal trends of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Svalbard in relation to dietary habits and food availability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andersen, Martin S.; Fuglei, Eva; König, Max; Lipasti, Inka; Pedersen, Åshild Ø.; Polder, Anuschka; Yoccoz, Nigel G.; Routti, Heli

    2015-01-01

    Temporal trends of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Svalbard, Norway, were investigated in relation to feeding habits and seasonal food availability. Arctic foxes from Svalbard forage in both marine and terrestrial ecosystems and the availability of their food items are impacted by climatic variability. Concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorinated pesticides (OCPs) and brominated flame retardants (polybrominated diphenyl ethers [PBDEs] and hexabromocyclododecane [HBCDD]) were analyzed in the liver of 141 arctic foxes collected between 1997 and 2013. Stable carbon isotope values (δ 13 C) were used as a proxy for feeding on marine versus terrestrial prey. The annual number of recovered reindeer carcasses and sea ice cover were used as proxies for climate influenced food availability (reindeers, seals). Linear models revealed that concentrations of PCBs, chlordanes, p,p′-DDE, mirex and PBDEs decreased 4–11% per year, while no trends were observed for hexachlorobenzene (HCB) or β-hexachlorocyclohexane (β-HCH). Positive relationships between POP concentrations and δ 13 C indicate that concentrations of all compounds increase with increasing marine dietary input. Increasing reindeer mortality was related to lower HCB concentrations in the foxes based on the linear models. This suggests that concentrations of HCB in arctic foxes may be influenced by high mortality levels of Svalbard reindeer. Further, β-HCH concentrations showed a positive association with sea ice cover. These results in addition to the strong effect of δ 13 C on all POP concentrations suggest that climate-related changes in arctic fox diet are likely to influence contaminant concentrations in arctic foxes from Svalbard. - Highlights: • POPs were analyzed in the arctic foxes' liver (n = 141) from Svalbard collected in 1997–2013. • PCBs, chlordanes, p,p′-DDE, mirex and PBDEs decreased 4–11% per year.

  20. Angiostrongylus vasorum infection in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Cornwall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, V R

    1996-11-02

    A post mortem examination on a young fox which had been observed to be clinically ill revealed a severe infection with Angiostrongylus vasorum. A further 11 foxes were examined and four were infected with the parasite; three of these also had advanced lesions of sarcoptic mange. The cases all occurred outside the previously defined focus of endemic infection for dogs in Cornwall and they appear to be the first recorded cases of A vasorum in foxes in the United Kingdom.

  1. Eucoleus boehmi infection in red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veronesi, Fabrizia; Morganti, Giulia; di Cesare, Angela; Lepri, Elvio; Cassini, Rudi; Zanet, Stefania; Deni, Dario; Chiari, Mario; Ferroglio, Ezio

    2014-12-15

    In the last decade an increase of the number of red foxes in anthropized habitats across European countries, including Italy, has been observed. This pones implications in terms of disease transmission between wildlife and domestic animals; in fact, there are evidences of the role of foxes as reservoirs and amplifiers of a broad spectrum of parasites infecting pets. The present study evaluated the prevalence of Eucoleus boehmi, an emerging extra-intestinal nematodes of the Capillariinae subfamily, in red foxes. The nasal passages and sinuses of 179 red foxes culled from several areas of northern and central Italy were inspected and the mucosal surfaces were scrapped and examined for adult nematodes and eggs, microscopically and genetically identified. Overall 55 foxes (30.7%) were found to be infected with E. boehmi, i.e. 27 on inspection of the nasal passages and sinuses and 28 on mucosal flush and scraping. The occurrence of E. boehmi was significantly (p fox body condition (mean: 7.8 specimens). These results show that E. boehmi is highly prevalent in the red fox populations of certain areas of Italy. Epidemiological implications are discussed, with a special focus on the role that this wild canid may have in the increasing transmission of nasal eucoleosis to domestic dogs. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Home range defense in the red fox, Vulpes vulpes L

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preston, E.M.

    1975-01-01

    This paper describes the home range defense behavior observed when nonresident male red foxes were introduced into established home ranges of resident male-female pairs. In 12 observation periods, four intruders were introduced to each of three mated pairs which had been given three weeks to acclimate to a 4.05-hectare, fenced enclosure. The residents centered their activities around a natural den and the frequency of intruder-resident encounters decreased rapidly with increasing distance from the den. The primary home range defense was continual harassment of the intruders by the resident males through agonistic displays and chases. Physical contact was rare. Even though the resident males were dominant in less than a majority of the interactions observed, they were usually successful in displacing the intruders within a few hours. The resident females seldom interacted with the intruders.

  3. Helminths of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saeed, I.; Maddox-Hyttel, Charlotte; Monrad, J.

    2006-01-01

    An epidemiological study of helminths in 1040 red foxes collected from various localities in Denmark during 1997-2002, revealed 21 helminth species at autopsy, including nine nematode species: Capillaria plica (prevalence 80.5%), Capillaria aerophila (74.1%), Crenosoma vulpis (17...... and average worm intensity for each helminth species varied considerably according to geographical locality, season, and year. Aggregated distribution was found for several helminth species. The two species E. multilocularis and E. perfoliatus are first records for Denmark....

  4. Predation by Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes at an Outdoor Piggery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia A. Fleming

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Outdoor pig operations are an alternative to intensive systems of raising pigs; however for the majority of outdoor pork producers, issues of biosecurity and predation control require significant management and (or capital investment. Identifying and quantifying predation risk in outdoor pork operations has rarely been done, but such data would be informative for these producers as part of their financial and logistical planning. We quantified potential impact of fox predation on piglets bred on an outdoor pork operation in south-western Australia. We used remote sensor cameras at select sites across the farm as well as above farrowing huts to record interactions between predators and pigs (sows and piglets. We also identified animal losses from breeding records, calculating weaning rate as a proportion of piglets born. Although only few piglets were recorded lost to fox predation (recorded by piggery staff as carcasses that are “chewed”, it is likely that foxes were contributing substantially to the 20% of piglets that were reported “missing”. Both sets of cameras recorded a high incidence of fox activity; foxes appeared on camera soon after staff left for the day, were observed tracking and taking live piglets (despite the presence of sows, and removed dead carcasses from in front of the cameras. Newly born and younger piglets appeared to be the most vulnerable, especially when they are born out in the paddock, but older piglets were also lost. A significant ( p = 0.001 effect of individual sow identification on the weaning rate, but no effect of sow age (parity, suggests that individual sow behavior towards predators influences predation risk for litters. We tracked the movement of piglet carcasses by foxes, and confirmed that foxes make use of patches of native vegetation for cover, although there was no effect of paddock, distance to vegetation, or position on the farm on weaning rate. Trials with non-toxic baits reveal high levels of non-target bait interference. Other management options are recommended, including removing hay from the paddocks to reduce the risks of sows farrowing in open paddocks, and covering or predator-proof fencing the pig carcass pit. Results of this study will have increasing relevance for the expanding outdoor/free-range pork industry, contributing to best practice guidelines for predator control.

  5. Trichinella britovi beim Rotfuchs (Vulpes vulpes) in Österreich

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krois, E.; Nöckler, K.; Duscher, G.

    2005-01-01

    infections in foxes. Materials and methods: Masseter and tongue samples from 1,546 foxes with known origin (sample coordinates from the provinces of Carinthia [n=401], Salzburg [108], Styria [493], Tyrol [395] and Vorarlberg [149] were determined by Geographic Information System), sent to the State...... Veterinary Laboratory in Moedling for rabies testing, were examined for Trichinella with the compression technique. Positive samples were evaluated quantitatively by digestion and differentiated by PCR. Results: 24 foxes (1.55%) were positive (Carinthia: 1.52%, Salzburg: 2.77%, Styria: 1.62%, the Tyrols: 1.......26%, Vorarlberg: 1.44%). In addition to the formerly known distribution of vulpine trichinellosis, positive animals were also found close to the border to Slovenia. Highest numbers of larval per gram muscle tissue (lpg) were found in the tongues (1-257 lpg compared to 0-43 lpg in masseter muscle tissue...

  6. Central vestibular syndrome in a red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) with ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... lacunar ischemic infarct in the territory of right caudal cerebral artery and its collateral branches. The lesion epicentre was in the right periaqueductal portion of the rostral mesencephalic tegmentum. Neuroanatomical and neurophysiological correlation between lesion localization and clinical presentation are discussed.

  7. Methods of censusing Red fox (Vulpes vulpes populations / Metodi di censimento della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Francisco Beltrán

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Estimating absolute or relative numbers in red fox populations is not an easy task. Although a range of methods has been described, neither an optimal nor a universally accepted technique has been found. Moreover, none has been tested on populations of known size. We reviewed the efficiency of fourteen indices of fox abundance classified into two groups: (a methods where individuals are captured and marked, which include ear tagging or similar conspicuous markings, toe clipping, radioactive tagging of faeces, radio-tracking, and statistics from hunting and trapping; (b methods not requiring capture, which include both direct methods (nocturnal counts, unsystematic observations, and drive censuses, and indirect methods (den counts, transects for track, scat counts, and scent stations. As a rule, statistics are rarely applicable to populations estimates. Methods involving capture are expensive but provide more accurate estimates than the second group of indices, which are not suitable for paired comparisons from one year to another. Management and wildlife specialists should have in mind such restrictions when considering their goals and the required level of accuracy. Finally, we recommend the simultaneous utilization and comparison of several methods (one from each group, as proposed in a double sampling strategy for optimum evaluations. Riassunto La valutazione della consistenza di una popolazione di Volpe, mediante censimenti assoluti o relativi, è di difficile soluzione. Tra i diversi metodi di conteggio impiegati, nessuno si è rivelato ottimale e universale. Tuttavia nessuno è stato utilizzato per popolazioni di consistenza nota. Qui esaminiamo la validità di 14 metodi impiegati per il calcolo di indici di abbondanza, ripartendoli in due gruppi: (a metodi che implicano la cattura e il marcamento degli animali mediante marche auricolari o contrassegni similari, amputazione delle falangi, radioisotopi rilevabili nelle feci, collari radiotelemetrici e metodi che si basano sulle statistiche venatorie e sui trappolaggi; (b metodi che non richiedono la cattura degli animali e che riguardano sia rilevamenti diretti (conteggio notturno, avvistamenti casuali, censimento in battuta, sia indiretti (conteggio delle tane, conteggio delle impronte e delle feci su percorsi definiti, stazioni odorifere. Raramente l'analisi statistica è applicabile alle stime della consistenza delle popolazioni. I metodi che implicano la cattura degli animali sono molto impegnativi in termini di tempo e costi, ma forniscono stime più accurate rispetto a quelli del secondo gruppo che non sono adatti per la comparazione dei dati da un anno all'altro. Questi limiti vanno attentamente considerati in relazione alle finalità e al grado di precisione che si intende raggiungere. Noi suggeriamo l'impiego simultaneo di più metodi di censimento (almeno uno per ciascun gruppo, per una comparazione incrociata dei dati e per ottenere una stima corretta della consistenza.

  8. Coexistence of coyotes (Canis latrans) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in an urban landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, David; Allen, Maximilian L.

    2018-01-01

    Urban environments are increasing worldwide and are inherently different than their rural counterparts, with a variety of effects on wildlife due to human presence, increased habitat fragmentation, movement barriers, and access to anthropogenic food sources. Effective management of urban wildlife requires an understanding of how urbanization affects their behavior and ecology. The spatial activity and interactions of urban wildlife, however, have not been as rigorously researched as in rural areas. From January 2015 to December 2016, we captured, radio-collared, and tracked 11 coyotes and 12 red foxes in Madison, WI. Within our study area, coyotes strongly selected home ranges with high proportions of natural areas; conversely, red foxes selected home ranges with open space and moderately developed areas. Use of highly developed areas best explained variation among individual home range sizes and inversely affected home range size for coyotes and red foxes. Coyote and red fox home ranges showed some degree of spatial and temporal overlap, but generally appeared partitioned by habitat type within our study area. Coyotes and red foxes were both active at similar times of the day, but their movement patterns differed based on species-specific habitat use. This spatial partitioning may promote positive co-existence between these sympatric canids in urban areas, and our findings of spatial activity and interactions will better inform wildlife managers working in urban areas. PMID:29364916

  9. Coexistence of coyotes (Canis latrans) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in an urban landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Marcus A; Drake, David; Allen, Maximilian L

    2018-01-01

    Urban environments are increasing worldwide and are inherently different than their rural counterparts, with a variety of effects on wildlife due to human presence, increased habitat fragmentation, movement barriers, and access to anthropogenic food sources. Effective management of urban wildlife requires an understanding of how urbanization affects their behavior and ecology. The spatial activity and interactions of urban wildlife, however, have not been as rigorously researched as in rural areas. From January 2015 to December 2016, we captured, radio-collared, and tracked 11 coyotes and 12 red foxes in Madison, WI. Within our study area, coyotes strongly selected home ranges with high proportions of natural areas; conversely, red foxes selected home ranges with open space and moderately developed areas. Use of highly developed areas best explained variation among individual home range sizes and inversely affected home range size for coyotes and red foxes. Coyote and red fox home ranges showed some degree of spatial and temporal overlap, but generally appeared partitioned by habitat type within our study area. Coyotes and red foxes were both active at similar times of the day, but their movement patterns differed based on species-specific habitat use. This spatial partitioning may promote positive co-existence between these sympatric canids in urban areas, and our findings of spatial activity and interactions will better inform wildlife managers working in urban areas.

  10. Echinococcus multilocularis in Slovak Republic: The first record in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dubinský, P.; Svobodová, V.; Turčeková, Ĺ.; Literák, I.; Martínek, K.; Reiterová, K.; Kolářová, L.; Klimeš, J.; Mrlík, Vojtěch

    1999-01-01

    Roč. 36, č. 2 (1999), s. 105-110 ISSN 0440-6605. [International Helminthological Symposium "Helminths, Helminthoses and Environment" /8./. Košice, 28.09.1999-01.10.1999] Grant - others:VEGA(SK) 2/5012/99 Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 0.514, year: 1999

  11. Echinococcus multilocularis in Slovak Republic: The first record in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dubinský, P.; Svobodová, V.; Turčeková, Ĺ.; Literák, I.; Martínek, K.; Reiterová, K.; Kolářová, L.; Klimeš, J.; Mrlík, Vojtěch

    1999-01-01

    Roč. 36, Supplementum (1999), s. 44 ISSN 0440-6605. [International Helminthological Symposium "Helminths, Helminthoses and Environment" /8./. 28.09.1999-01.10.1999, Košice] Subject RIV: EG - Zoology

  12. A case report of visceral leishmaniasis in red fox (Vulpes vulpes)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ajl yemi

    2011-12-30

    Dec 30, 2011 ... leishmaniasis has been described in dogs and other ... and anti vector measures have been largely unsuccessful. (Mohebali et al., 2005). Visceral leishmaniasis is one of the most important parasitic diseases worldwide and.

  13. Red fox (Vulpes vulpes Linnaeus, 1758) as biological indicator for environmental pollution in Hungary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heltai, Miklós; Markov, Georgi

    2012-10-01

    Our aim were to establish the metal (Cu, Ni, Zn, Co, Cd, and Pb) levels of red fox liver and the kidney samples (n = 10) deriving from central part of Hungary and compare the results with other countries' data. According to our results the concentrations of residues of the targeted elements (mg/kg dry weight) in liver and kidney samples were, respectively in liver: Cu: 21.418, Zn: 156.928, Ni: 2.079, Co: 1.611, Pb: 1.678 and Cd: 0.499; and kidney samples: Cu: 9.236; Zn: 87.159; Ni: 2.514; Co: 2.455; Pb: 2.63 and Cd: 0.818. Pb levels of Hungarian red fox liver samples significantly exceed the values of Italian specimens' samples, whilst the same element's concentrations of Hungarian red fox kidney samples were higher than the results published in Germany.

  14. Infectivity of Trichinella papuae for experimentally infected red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Webster, P.; Malakauskas, A.; Kapel, C. M O

    2002-01-01

    To evaluate infectivity for carnivores as well as other biological characteristics of the newly described Trichinella papuae, eight red foxes were experimentally infected with the parasite. Five weeks after inoculation, T. papuae larvae were recovered from nine different muscle types. The larvae...

  15. The concentration of manganese, iron and strontium in bone of red fox Vulpes vulpes (L. 1758).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budis, Halina; Kalisinska, Elzbieta; Lanocha, Natalia; Kosik-Bogacka, Danuta I

    2013-12-01

    The aims of the study were to determine manganese (Mn), iron (Fe) and strontium (Sr) concentrations in fox bone samples from north-western Poland and to examine the relationships between the bone Mn, Fe and Sr concentrations and the sex and age of the foxes. In the studied samples of fox cartilage, cartilage with adjacent compact bone, compact bone and spongy bone, the concentrations of the analysed metals had the following descending order: Fe > Sr > Mn. The only exception was in compact bone, in which the concentrations were arranged in the order Sr > Fe > Mn. Manganese concentrations were significantly higher in cartilage, compact bone and cartilage with compact bone than in spongy bone. Iron concentrations were higher in cartilage and spongy bone compared with compact bone. Strontium concentrations were greater in compact bone than in cartilage and spongy bone. The manganese, iron and strontium concentrations in the same type of bone material in many cases correlated with each other, with the strongest correlation (r > 0.70) between Mn and Fe in almost all types of samples. In addition, concentrations of the same metals in different bone materials were closely correlated for Mn and Fe in cartilage and cartilage with adjacent compact bone, and for Sr in compact bone and cartilage with compact bone. In the fox from NW Poland, there were no statistically significant differences in Mn, Fe and Sr in any of the types of bone material between the sexes and immature and adult foxes.

  16. Measurement repeatability of tibial tuberosity-trochlear groove offset distance in red fox (Vulpes vulpes) cadavers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Miles, J.E.; Jensen, B.R.; Kirpensteijn, J.; Svalastoga, E.L.; Eriksen, T.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract OBJECTIVE: To describe CT image reconstruction criteria for measurement of the tibial tuberosity-trochlear groove (TT-TG) offset distance, evaluate intra- and inter-reconstruction repeatability, and identify key sources of error in the measurement technique, as determined in vulpine hind

  17. Caesium concentration factors in wild herbivores and the fox (Vulpes vulpes L.)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lowe, V.P.W.; Horrill, A.D.

    1991-01-01

    A selection of wild animals was sampled in the winter of 1986/87. The sites chosen for sampling were based on information obtained from surveys carried out by The Institute of Terrestrial Ecology in the spring and autumn of 1986. Animals included deer, grouse, hares and rabbits, and foxes which were collected as a top carnivore in the food chain. Variation in concentration of caesium between species from the same area was unpredictable; rabbits never exceeded 200 Bq kg -1 (fresh wt) of 137 Cs in their flesh, even when adjacent to deer forests with over 1000 Bq kg -1 in the venison. The greatest complication arose from areas of peaty uplands where the pre-Chernobyl 137 Cs from weapons-testing was much higher than expected. This pre-Chernobyl contribution amounted to 630 Bq kg -1 in a red grouse from the Pennines, and 650 Bq kg -1 in a roe deer from near the Borders, being c. 60% of the total. Significant differences in concentration factors were found depending on species, food, sex, breeding condition and age. Contrasting the decrease of the two caesium isotopes in roe deer from forestry on peat with those from woodlands on mineral soils, it appeared that after an initial fall in concentration, the only decrease thereafter occurred on the mineral soils. Nowhere were radiocaesium concentrations high enough to cause concern amongst consumers of game and other wild animals, even when levels exceed 3000 Bq kg -1 (fresh wt) as they did in red deer, red grouse and the blue hare. (author)

  18. Spatial spreading of Echinococcus multilocularis in Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) across nation borders in Western Europe.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vervaeke, Muriel; Giessen, Joke van der; Brochier, Bernard; Losson, Bernard; Jordaens, Kurt; Verhagen, Ron; Lezenne Coulander, Cor de; Teunis, Peter F M

    2006-01-01

    The occurrence of the fox tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis in Red foxes was studied in Belgium and a neighbouring region in The Netherlands. A total number of 1202 foxes were analysed (1018 in Belgium and 184 in The Netherlands) of which 179 were infected with E. multilocularis (164 in Belgium

  19. A range-wide synthesis and timeline for phylogeographic events in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutschera, Verena E; Lecomte, Nicolas; Janke, Axel; Selva, Nuria; Sokolov, Alexander A; Haun, Timm; Steyer, Katharina; Nowak, Carsten; Hailer, Frank

    2013-06-05

    Many boreo-temperate mammals have a Pleistocene fossil record throughout Eurasia and North America, but only few have a contemporary distribution that spans this large area. Examples of Holarctic-distributed carnivores are the brown bear, grey wolf, and red fox, all three ecological generalists with large dispersal capacity and a high adaptive flexibility. While the two former have been examined extensively across their ranges, no phylogeographic study of the red fox has been conducted across its entire Holarctic range. Moreover, no study included samples from central Asia, leaving a large sampling gap in the middle of the Eurasian landmass. Here we provide the first mitochondrial DNA sequence data of red foxes from central Asia (Siberia), and new sequences from several European populations. In a range-wide synthesis of 729 red fox mitochondrial control region sequences, including 677 previously published and 52 newly obtained sequences, this manuscript describes the pattern and timing of major phylogeographic events in red foxes, using a Bayesian coalescence approach with multiple fossil tip and root calibration points. In a 335 bp alignment we found in total 175 unique haplotypes. All newly sequenced individuals belonged to the previously described Holarctic lineage. Our analyses confirmed the presence of three Nearctic- and two Japan-restricted lineages that were formed since the Mid/Late Pleistocene. The phylogeographic history of red foxes is highly similar to that previously described for grey wolves and brown bears, indicating that climatic fluctuations and habitat changes since the Pleistocene had similar effects on these highly mobile generalist species. All three species originally diversified in Eurasia and later colonized North America and Japan. North American lineages persisted through the last glacial maximum south of the ice sheets, meeting more recent colonizers from Beringia during postglacial expansion into the northern Nearctic. Both brown bears and red foxes colonized Japan's northern island Hokkaido at least three times, all lineages being most closely related to different mainland lineages. Red foxes, grey wolves, and brown bears thus represent an interesting case where species that occupy similar ecological niches also exhibit similar phylogeographic histories.

  20. The presence of Echinococcus multilocularis in the red fox (vulpes vulpes) in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Giessen JWB; Rombout Y; Limper L; van der Veen; Moolenbeek C; Franchimont H; Homan W; MGB

    1998-01-01

    Er zijn onderzoekingen gedaan naar het voorkomen van Echinococcus multilocularis bij vossen in Nederland van 1996 tot 1998. Deze parasiet is de oorzaak van alveolaire echinococcose, een ernstige parasitaire zoonose. Hiervoor zijn eerst 272 vossen onderzocht in het grensgebied met Duitsland en

  1. Molecular Survey of Hepatozoon canis in Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes) from Romania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imre, Mirela; Dudu, Andreea; Ilie, Marius S; Morariu, Sorin; Imre, Kálmán; Dărăbuş, Gheorghe

    2015-08-01

    Blood samples of 119 red foxes, originating from 44 hunting grounds of 3 western counties (Arad, Hunedoara, and Timiş) of Romania, have been examined for the presence of Hepatozoon canis infection using the conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of the fragment of 18S rRNA gene. Overall, 15 (12.6%) samples were found to be PCR-positive. Of the sampled hunting grounds, 29.5% (13/44) were found positive. Positive samples were recorded in all screened counties with the prevalence of 14.8% (9/61) in Arad, 9.8% (5/51) in Timiş, and 14.3% (1/7) in Hunedoara, respectively. No correlation was found (P > 0.05) between H. canis positivity and gender or territorial distribution of the infection. To confirm PCR results, 9 randomly selected amplicons were sequenced. The obtained sequences were identical to each other, confirmed the results of the conventional PCR, and showed 98-100% homology to other H. canis sequences. The results of the current survey support the role of red foxes as sylvatic reservoirs of H. canis in Romania.

  2. A case report of visceral leishmaniasis in red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A survey of 52 red foxes, a single two year old male weighing about 6 kg showed clinical signs including hair loss, impotence, local or general lymphadenopathy, keratitis, hepatosplenomegaly, lymphadenopathy, hair shedding, dermal lesions, onychogriposis and cachexia. The studied fox IFA titer was larger or equal to ...

  3. Angiostrongylus vasorum in Romania: an extensive survey in red foxes, Vulpes vulpes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deak, Georgiana; Gherman, Călin M; Ionică, Angela M; Vezendan, Alexandru D; D'Amico, Gianluca; Matei, Ioana A; Daskalaki, Aikaterini A; Marian, Ionuț; Damian, Aurel; Cozma, Vasile; Mihalca, Andrei D

    2017-07-12

    Angiostrongylus vasorum is the causative agent of canine angiostrongylosis, a severe snail-borne disease of dogs. Red foxes are important natural reservoirs of infection, and surveys of foxes provide a more objective picture of the parasite distribution. Our aim was to investigate the possibility of the presence of A. vasorum in red foxes from the western part of Romania and to analyse the risk factors related to the sex, age and geographic origin of the foxes. Between July 2016 and April 2017, 567 hunted red foxes from 10 counties of western Romania were examined by necropsy for the presence of lungworms. Overall, the infection with A. vasorum has been found in 24 red foxes (4.2%) originating in four counties (Mureș, Hunedoara, Sălaj and Cluj). There was no significant difference between the prevalence in males and females, between juveniles and adults and between counties. This is the first report of autochthonous infections of A. vasorum in Romania, showing a relatively low prevalence and extending eastwards the known distributional range of this parasite in Europe. The presence of autochthonous cases in domestic dogs in Romania remains to be confirmed by further studies.

  4. FOOD OF THE SILVER FOX VULPES CHAMA The silver fox Vulpes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    habits as follows: "The South African Silver Fox is nocturnal, occasionally crepuscular, and goes about singly or in ... stigma attached to virtually any "fox" or "jackal" in southern Africa as killers offarm animals. Thus many ... of data for the species justifies pUblication of the results, while further work continues. MATERIAL AND ...

  5. Genetically distinct isolates of Spirocerca sp. from a naturally infected red fox (Vulpes vulpes) from Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Hansen, Mette Sif; Chriél, Mariann

    2014-01-01

    sugar-salt solu-tion, and sieving failed to detect eggs of Spirocerca sp. in feces collected from the colon.This is the first report of spirocercosis in Denmark, and may have been caused by a recentintroduction by migrating paratenic or definitive host. Analysis of two overlapping par-tial sequences...... of the cox1 gene, from individual worms, revealed distinct genetic variation(7–9%) between the Danish worms and isolates of S. lupi from Europe, Asia and Africa.This was confirmed by phylogenetic analysis that clearly separated the Danish worms fromother isolates of S. lupi. The distinct genetic differences...

  6. Prevalence of zoonotic important parasites in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Great Britain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, G C; Gangadharan, B; Taylor, Z; Laurenson, M K; Bradshaw, H; Hide, G; Hughes, J M; Dinkel, A; Romig, T; Craig, P S

    2003-12-01

    A national necropsy survey of red foxes was carried out across Great Britain to record Echinococcus, Trichinella and Toxoplasma. The survey did not record directly, or indirectly using coproantigen/PCR tests, evidence for the presence of Echinococcus multilocularis in 588 animals, although E. granulosus was suspected in six animals. Parasitological evidence for Trichinella spp. could not be found in 587 fox muscle digests, and a specific PCR test also failed to detect Toxoplasma in a sub-set of 61 random fox tongue biopsies. The upper 95% confidence interval for the above parasites was 0.60% (E. multilocularis), 0.60% (Trichinella spp.) and 5.6% (Toxoplasma). The commonest gut parasites were the hookworm Uncinaria stenocephala (41.3%) and the ascarid Toxocara canis (61.6%). This study also reports the second occurrence of Trichuris vulpis in Great Britain.

  7. Canine distemper virus infection in fennec fox (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, Gye-Hyeong; Jho, Yeon-Sook; Bak, Eun-Jung

    2010-08-01

    Fifteen 8-month-old fennec foxes imported from Sudan showed fever, mucopurulent ocular discharge, diarrhea, severe emaciation, seizures, and generalized ataxia, and died. Three of the 15 animals were presented for diagnostic investigation. Severe dehydration, brain congestion, and gastric ulcers were observed in all animals. In one animal, the lungs had failed to collapse and were multifocally dark red in appearance. Histopathologically, there were lymphohistiocytic meningoencephalitis with malacia, mild interstitial pneumonia, lymphoid depletion of lymphoid tissues and organs, and intestinal villous atrophy with intralesional coccidia. There were many intracytoplasmic and/or intranuclear inclusion bodies in the epithelial cells of the medullary velum, lungs, liver, kidneys, trachea, pancreas, stomach, gall bladder, urinary bladder, and ureters, and in macrophages of malacia foci and lymphocytes and macrophages of lymphoid organs. Additionally, intestinal coccidia were confirmed to be Isospora species by a fecal test. To our knowledge, this is the first report of canine distemper with intestinal coccidiosis in fennec fox.

  8. Nutrition and behavior of fennec foxes (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempsey, Janet L; Hanna, Sherilyn J; Asa, Cheryl S; Bauman, Karen L

    2009-05-01

    Fennec foxes make popular pets because of their small size, minimal odor, and highly social behaviors. They are kept in zoos for conservation and educational programs. The exotic animal practitioner is most likely to be presented with fennec foxes that are overweight because of inappropriate diets or excessive feeding. Clients attempting to hand-rear fennec foxes need advice about formula selection, amounts to feed, protocols for keeping pups warm, and weaning. This article provides information on social behavior, reproduction, and parental behavior, nutrition, and hand-rearing.

  9. Parasitic zoonoses: survey in foxes (Vulpes vulpes in the northern Apennines / Zoonosi parassitarie: indagini in volpi (Vulpes vulpes dell'Appennino settentrionale

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vittorio Guberti

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract A parasitological survey on 153 foxes was carried out in the northern Apennines, during the period 1984-1987. The following parasites were identified: Toxocara canis (46.4%, Taenia sp. (17%, Uncinaria stenocephala (11.8%, Mesocestoides lineatus (11.1%, Ancylostoma caninum (3.9%, Taenia hydatigena (3.3%, Trichuris vulpis (3.3%, Dipylidium caninum (2.6%, Taenia crassiceps (2%. All foxes were negative for Trichinella sp. A statistical analysis was performed to evaluate differences in the parasitic fauna according to the sex and age classes of the hosts. The role that the fox could have as a reservoir of helminthic zoonoses is discussed. The results are compared with those of similar studies carried out in Italy. Riassunto Nel periodo 1984-1987 è stata condotta un'indagine parassitologica su 153 volpi abbattute nell'Appennino romagnolo. Sono stati reperiti i seguenti parassiti: Toxocara canis (46,4%, Taenia sp. (17%, Uncinaria stenocephala (11,8%, Mesocestoides lineatus (11,1%, Ancylostoma caninum (3,9%, Taenia hydatigena (3,3%, Trichuris vulpis (3,3%, Dipylidium caninum (2,6%, Taenia crassiceps (2%. Tutte le volpi esaminate sono risultate negative per Trichinella sp. È stata effettuata l'analisi statistica dei dati per evidenziare eventuali differenze della fauna parassitaria in relazione al sesso e all'età delle volpi. Sulla base dei dati ottenuti viene discussa l'importanza che la Volpe può assumere come serbatoio di zoonosi elmintiche. I risultati acquisiti sono inoltre comparati con quelli ottenuti in analoghe ricerche condotte in Italia.

  10. First data on the feeding habits of the Red fox (Vulpes vulpes L. in Sicily / Primi dati sulla posizione trofica della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes L. in Sicilia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Fais

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract From December 1986 to May 1988 the diet of the fox was studied by analysis of 539 droppings of which 349 gathered in a woodland (Province of Palermo throughout a year (1987 and 190 in different localities of the Sicily. Invertebrates (77%, mostly Arthropods, were the staple food, followed by fruits (38%, Mammals (31% and Birds (12%. Mammals were especially represented by small species (21% and occasionally by Lagomorphs (4%; they mainly occurred in winter and spring. Fruits and Invertebrates were eaten in a good number throughout the year with peaks of frequency in autumn and in summer. The feeding habits of the fox in Sicily are typical of a generalist species. Riassunto Da dicembre 1986 a maggio 1988, la dieta della Volpe è stata studiata mediante l'analisi di 539 feci, di cui 349 raccolte nel bosco di Ficuzza (provincia di Palermo, dove sono state evidenziate le variazioni stagionali delle categorie alimentari rilevate, e 190 in diverse località della Sicilia. I dati raccolti sono stati espressi come frequenza percentuale delle presenze. Le principali componenti della dieta sono gli Invertebrati (77% rappresentati soprattutto da Artropodi, i frutti (38%, i Mammiferi (31% e gli Uccelli (12%. I Mammiferi sono costituiti prevalentemente da specie di piccole dimensioni (21% e occasionalmente da Lagomorfi (4%, e sono predati soprattutto in inverno e primavera. I frutti e gli Invertebrati sono abbondantemente consumati per l'intero arco dell'anno e mostrano picchi di presenza in autunno e in estate. In Sicilia, le abitudini alimentari della Volpe sono tipiche di un predatore generalista.

  11. Aspects of the biology of foxes (Vulpes vulpes in Northern Italy / Aspetti della biologia della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in Italia settentrionale

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudio Prigioni

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Fifty-five foxes (18 adults and 37 cubs from 1 to 5 months old were examined during a contro1 program conducted in May and June 1986 in hilly areas of the Province of Alessandria. For each fox standard linear measurements and 9 skull measurements were recorded (Tab. 2. Adult males were heavier than females and were larger in occipito-nasal length and in palatal length. The discriminant function between sexes correctly classified 83.3% females and 66.7% males using the weight and the palatal length. No difference in the growth of male and female cubs was detected, using a test of covariance on the difference of the slopes of regression equations for hind foot length, total length and body wheight against age. The mean size of 14 litters was 2.6 individuals per litters. Cubs were born between the end of January and the end of May with a peak in April. The diet of foxes was studied by stomach contents analysis. Birds (mainly Galliformes, Mammals (particularly Lagomorphs and Insects were the main food categoria. The food categories (Birds and Mammals with high protein contents were fundamentally more used by cubs than adult foxes. Twenty five percent of the total biomass ingested by foxes were pheasants and hares. Riassunto Sono state esaminate 55 volpi (18 esemplari adulti e 27 cuccioli di 1-5 mesi di età uccise in provincia di Alessandria durante operazioni di controllo della specie effettuate in maggio-giugno 1986. Per ogni esemplare sono state rilevate le misure corporee standard e 9 misure craniche. Per le volpi adulte sono state evidenziate differenze significative tra i sessi per quanto riguarda il peso e le lunghezze occipito-nasale e del palato. L'analisi discriminante sui dati biometrici evidenzia che la lunghezza del palato in primo luogo e il peso sono i parametri discriminati e la funzione classifica correttamente 1'83,3% delle femmine e il 66,7% dei maschi. Le differenze nella crescita tra i sessi dei cuccioli, valutate mediante l'analisi della covarianza delle pendenze delle rette di regressione età-peso, età-lunghezza totale e età-lunghezza piede posteriore, non sono risultate significative. Su un totale di 14 cucciolate è stata rilevata una dimensione media di 2,6 individui e le nascite sono distribuite dalla fine di gennaio alla fine di maggio con un picco di presenza in aprile. La dieta della specie, rilevata mediante analisi del contenuto stomacale, evidenzia che più Uccelli (soprattutto Galliformi, i Mammiferi (in particolare Lagomorfi e, in secondo ordine, gli Insetti sono le principali categorie alimentari consumate dalla Volpe. I1 confronto del regime alimentare tra adulti e giovani rileva che questi ultimi tendenzialmente consumano più alimenti (Mammiferi, Uccelli con elevato contenuto proteico. 11 25% circa della biomassa complessivamente ingerita dalla Volpe riguarda specie di particolare interesse venatorio (Lepre, Fagiano.

  12. Trophic niche of the fox Vulpes vulpes in the Ticino Valley (Northern Italy / Nicchia trofica della volpe Vulpes vulpes nella valle del Ticino

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudio Prigioni

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The diet of the fox was studied by the analysis of 223 scats gathered monthly during 1985 and 1986. The different categories of food were quantified as relative frequency of occurrence (Fr% and as percentage of the mean bulk (Vm%. Mammals, mainly Rodents, were the staple food (Vm% annual=43.7 and reached the highest value in winter (Vm%=74.6 in January. Rats Rattus sp. were the principal rodents taken by foxes; they were probably preyed upon close to farmsteads where severa1 piles of garbage occurred. Birds were the second important prey category (Vm% annual=26.1 and were present at all time of the year; they were almost equally represented by Rallidae, Phasianidae, Anatidae and Passeriformes. Vegetables, mainly Rosaceae (Vm% annual=7.1 and Berberidaceae (Vm%=3.5 fruits, were also eaten all year rounds with a peak in summer (Vm%=82.2 in August. Insects, almost exclusively Coleoptera, carrions and garbage were less important items of the diet. Hares, rabbits, pheasants and wildfowl represented 23% of the annual mean bulk of ingested prey. The trophic niche breadth, evalued by the Levins' normalized index (B, was calculated using the relative frequencies (Fr and the mean volumes (Vm. The BFr and BVm values were not significantly different, although the former values were higher (BFr annual=O.61 against BVm=0.49, data of 1985 and 1986 pooled. The monthly distribution of both indexes throughout the year draws a bimodal pattern with the maximum values in May (BVm=O.79 and November (BVm=0,91 and the minimum values in January (BVm=0.31 and in August (BVm=O,40. The fox uses several food categories, but only some of them are seasonally important. Riassunto La dieta della specie è stata studiata analizzando 223 feci raccolte con cadenza mensile nel 1985 e 1986. I dati ottenuti, espressi come frequenza relativa percentuale (Fr% e volume medio percentuale (Vm%, evidenziano che i Mammiferi (soprattutto Roditori sono la componente principale della dieta (Vm% annuale=43,7 e raggiungono i valori più elevati di presenza in inverno (Vm%=74,6 in gennaio. La specie preda in particolare i ratti Rattus sp. (Vm% annuale=20,6 che sembra catturare principalmente in vicinanza di piccoli centri abitati e cascine dove sono presenti diversi cumuli di rifiuti. Gli Uccelli sono la seconda componente trofica in ordine di importanza (Vm% annuale=26,1, compaiono tutto l'anno e sono ripartiti quasi equamente tra Rallidi, Fasianidi, Anatidi e Passeriformi. Anche i Vegetali (Vm% annuale=20,2 sono rappresentati per l'intero arco dell'anno, hanno valori massimi di presenza in estate (Vm%=82,2 in agosto e sono composti soprattutto da frutti delle Rosaceae (Vm% annuale=7,1 e delle Berberidaceae (Vm%=3,5. Gli Insetti, costituiti quasi esclusivamente da Coleotteri, le Carogne e i Rifiuti sono componenti integrative della dieta. La predazione di selvaggina di particolare interesse venatorio (Leporidae, Phasianidae e Anatidae è stimabile nell'ordine del 23% del volume medio di prede ingerito dalla specie nell'arco dell'anno. La nicchia trofica valutata utilizzando le frequenze relative non è risultata significativamente più ampia (BFr=0,61 cumulando i dati 1985-86 di quella rilevata sulla base dei volumi medi delle categorie alimentari consumate (BVm=0,49. Nell'arco dell'anno, entrambi gli indici così calcolati mostrano un andamento bimodale con i valori più elevati in primavera (BVm=0,79 in maggio e autunno (BVm=0,91 in novembre, intercalati da quelli più bassi in inverno (BVm=0,31 in gennaio e metà estate (BVm=0,40 in agosto. La Volpe tende ad utilizzare diverse categorie alimentari privilegiandone però solo alcune.

  13. Heavy metal concentrations in the small intestine of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with and without Echinococcus multilocularis infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brožová, Adela; Jankovská, Ivana; Miholová, Daniela; Scháňková, Štěpánka; Truněčková, Jana; Langrová, Iva; Kudrnáčová, Marie; Vadlejch, Jaroslav

    2015-02-01

    Heavy metal (Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn) levels in red fox small intestine samples with or without Echinococcus multilocularis infection were studied. The red foxes were taken from the open countryside of northwest Bohemia (CR). Red foxes with E. multilocularis infection had lower levels of toxic metals (Cd, Pb); cadmium levels in infected foxes (0.0052 mg/kg) were twice as low as in uninfected foxes (0.0106 mg/kg). This was the same case for lead: 0.0288 mg/kg infected red foxes (inf.) and 0.0413 mg/kg uninfected (uninf.). Conversely, red foxes with E. multilocularis infection yielded higher concentrations in comparison to their uninfected counterparts: Cr (0.0087 mg/kg uninf. and 0.0116 mg/kg inf.), Cu (0.2677 mg/kg uninf. and 0.3205 mg/kg inf.), Fe (6.46 mg/kg uninf. and 10.89 mg/kg inf.), Mn (0.1966 mg/kg uninf. and 0.2029 mg/kg inf.), Ni (0.0415 mg/kg uninf. and 0.064 mg/kg inf.) and Zn (16.71 mg/kg uninf. and 20.25 mg/kg inf). This could support the hypothesis that tapeworms are able to absorb toxic heavy metals from the host body into their tissues, as well as to modify other element concentrations in the host body.

  14. Red fox ( Vulpes vulpes L.) favour seed dispersal, germination and seedling survival of Mediterranean Hackberry ( Celtis australis L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juan, Traba; Sagrario, Arrieta; Jesús, Herranz; Cristina, Clamagirand M.

    2006-07-01

    Seeds of the Mediterranean Hackberry Celtis australis are often encountered in fox faeces. In order to evaluate the effect of gut transit on the size of seeds selected, the rates and speed of germination and on the survival of the seedlings, Mediterranean Hackberry seeds from fox faeces were germinated in a greenhouse. The results were compared with those of seeds taken from ripe, uneaten fruits. Fox-dispersed seeds were smaller and lighter than the control ones and had higher (74% vs. 57%) and more rapid germination (74.5 days vs. 99.2 days). Seedlings from fox-dispersed seeds showed significantly greater survival by the end of the study period (74.1% vs. 43.6%) than the control ones. Survival in seedlings from fox-dispersed seeds was related to germination date, late seedlings showing poorer survival. This relationship was not observed away in the control seedlings. Seed mass did not affect seedling survival. Seedling arising from fox-dispersed seeds grew faster than control ones. These results suggest that fox can play a relevant role as seed disperser of Mediterranean Hackberry.

  15. Variation in the diet of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in mountain habitats: Effects of altitude and season

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hartová-Nentvichová, M.; Šálek, M.; Červený, Jaroslav; Koubek, Petr

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 75, č. 4 (2010), s. 334-340 ISSN 1616-5047 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA524/06/0687 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : red fox * food * mountain habitats Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.264, year: 2010

  16. Parasites with possible zoonotic potential in the small intestines of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes from Northwest Bohemia (CzR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jankovská I.

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available We determined the prevalence of primarily zoonotic parasites in the small intestines of 40 (20 males and 20 females red foxes living near human dwellings. The total prevalence of parasite infection was 77.5 % (31/40; the prevalence was 37.5 % (15/40 for Toxocara canis and 35 % (14/40 for Toxascaris leonina. The mean intensity infection was 3 and 11 helminths for T. canis and T. leonina, respectively. The prevalence of other intestinal helminths and mean infection intensity in this study are given: Echinococcus multilocularis 40 % (16/40 with 1000 individuals, Mesocestoides spp. 40 % (16/40 with 8 individuals, Uncinaria stenocephala 10 % (4/40 with 8 individuals, and Taenia pisiformis 10 % (4/40 with 1 individual. With regards to prevalence and intensity of infection, as well as prevalence of individual parasites, there were no significant differences (P≥0.05 between male and female red foxes.

  17. Trichinella spp. biomass has increased in raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Estonia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kärssin, Age; Häkkinen, Liidia; Niin, Enel

    2017-01-01

    for evaluating the effectiveness of oral vaccination program for rabies eradication in wildlife, samples from 113 raccoon dogs and 87 red foxes were included in this study. From each animal, 20 g of masseter muscle tissue was tested for the presence of Trichinella larvae using an artificial digestion method.......0% in red foxes, which were higher than previous estimates. In addition, the larval burden had also increased in both hosts. We estimated that in 2011-2012, the Trichinella spp. biomass was more than 15 times higher in raccoon dogs and almost two times higher in red foxes than in 1992-2000 (based on mean...

  18. Occurrence of ticks in the subcutaneous tissue of red foxes, Vulpes vulpes in Czech Republic and Romania

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    D'Amico, G.; Juránková, J.; Tăbăran, F. A.; Frgelecová, L.; Forejtek, P.; Matei, I.A.; Ionică, A.M.; Hodžić, A.; Modrý, David; Mihalca, A. D.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 8, č. 2 (2017), s. 309-312 ISSN 1877-959X Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Red fox * subcutaneous * ticks * Czech Republic * Romania Subject RIV: GJ - Animal Vermins ; Diseases, Veterinary Medicine OBOR OECD: Veterinary science Impact factor: 3.230, year: 2016

  19. Changes in the distribution of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes in urban areas in Great Britain: findings and limitations of a media-driven nationwide survey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dawn M Scott

    Full Text Available Urbanization is one of the major forms of habitat alteration occurring at the present time. Although this is typically deleterious to biodiversity, some species flourish within these human-modified landscapes, potentially leading to negative and/or positive interactions between people and wildlife. Hence, up-to-date assessment of urban wildlife populations is important for developing appropriate management strategies. Surveying urban wildlife is limited by land partition and private ownership, rendering many common survey techniques difficult. Garnering public involvement is one solution, but this method is constrained by the inherent biases of non-standardised survey effort associated with voluntary participation. We used a television-led media approach to solicit national participation in an online sightings survey to investigate changes in the distribution of urban foxes in Great Britain and to explore relationships between urban features and fox occurrence and sightings density. Our results show that media-based approaches can generate a large national database on the current distribution of a recognisable species. Fox distribution in England and Wales has changed markedly within the last 25 years, with sightings submitted from 91% of urban areas previously predicted to support few or no foxes. Data were highly skewed with 90% of urban areas having <30 fox sightings per 1000 people km(-2. The extent of total urban area was the only variable with a significant impact on both fox occurrence and sightings density in urban areas; longitude and percentage of public green urban space were respectively, significantly positively and negatively associated with sightings density only. Latitude, and distance to nearest neighbouring conurbation had no impact on either occurrence or sightings density. Given the limitations associated with this method, further investigations are needed to determine the association between sightings density and actual fox density, and variability of fox density within and between urban areas in Britain.

  20. Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay-A rapid detection tool for identifying red fox (Vulpes vulpes) DNA in the carcasses of harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heers, Teresa; van Neer, Abbo; Becker, André; Grilo, Miguel Luca; Siebert, Ursula; Abdulmawjood, Amir

    2017-01-01

    Carcasses of wild animals are often visited by different scavengers. However, determining which scavenger caused certain types of bite marks is particularly difficult and knowledge thereof is lacking. Therefore, a loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay (target sequence cytochrome b) was developed to detect red fox DNA in carcasses of harbour porpoises. The MSwab™ method for direct testing without prior DNA isolation was validated. As a detection device, the portable real-time fluorometer Genie® II was used, which yields rapid results and can be used in field studies without huge laboratory equipment. In addition to in vitro evaluation and validation, a stranded and scavenged harbour porpoise carcass was successfully examined for red fox DNA residues. The developed LAMP method is a valuable diagnostic tool for confirming presumable red fox bite wounds in harbour porpoises without further DNA isolation steps.

  1. First methodological-experimental contribution to the study of the diet of the red fox Vulpes vulpes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Pilli

    2000-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The aims of this study were: to devise an easy method for the evaluation of the differences in the diet between two or more samples of fox scats collected along transects; to elucidate seasonal and local variations in the consumption of mammals. The study area (2000 ha is located in the Prealps of the province of Belluno (municipality of Ponte nelle Alpi. Before our analysis of the scats, we evaluated the laboratory procedures used by previous Authors (Reynolds and Aebischer, 1991. We suggest a "semi-quantitative" method that allows us to obtain more information than with "qualitative" methods alone.

  2. Endoparasites of the raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) and the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark 2009-2012 - A comparative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Chriél, Mariann; Jensen, Trine Hammer; Enemark, Heidi Larsen

    2013-12-01

    Invasive species negatively influence the biodiversity of the ecosystems they invade and may introduce pathogens to native species. Raccoon dogs have very successfully invaded Europe, including, recently, Denmark. This study included analyses of gastrointestinal helminths and Trichinella spp. from 99 raccoon dogs and 384 native red foxes collected from October 2009 to March 2012. The sedimentation and counting method used revealed that raccoon dogs and foxes harboured 9 and 13 different helminth species, respectively, of which several known to be zoonotic. Significantly more nematode and cestode species were found in foxes while raccoon dogs had more trematode species. Rodent transmitted parasites were more prevalent in foxes, while amphibian transmitted parasites were more prevalent in raccoon dogs. One fox was infected with Echinococcus multilocularis (0.3%), while no Trichinella spp. were detected in raccoon dogs or foxes. The trematode Brachylaima tokudai was detected for the first time in Denmark in five of 384 foxes (1.3%). Prevalences of Pygidiopsis summa (3.0% and 3.4%) and Cryptocotyle spp. (15.2% and 15.4%) were comparable in raccoon dogs and foxes, respectively. Four helminth species were more prevalent in foxes than in raccoon dogs: Toxocara canis (60.9% and 13.1%); Uncinaria stenocephala (84.1% and 48.5%); Mesocestoides spp. (42.7% and 23.2%); and Taenia spp. (30.7% and 2.0%), respectively. Three helminth species were more prevalent in raccoon dogs than in foxes: Dipylidium caninum (5.1% and 0.3%); Mesorchis denticulatus (38.4% and 4.2%); and Alaria alata (69.7% and 34.4%), respectively. T. canis was more abundant in foxes while A. alata was more abundant in raccoon dogs. The intestinal distribution of a number of helminth species was comparable between hosts, but highly variable between parasite species. Inherent biological factors and host invasion of new areas might have shaped these marked differences in helminth fauna between the invasive raccoon dog and the native red fox.

  3. Accumulation of Metals in Liver Tissues of Sympatric Golden Jackal (Canis aureus) and Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) in the Southern Part of Romania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farkas, Attila; Bidló, András; Bolodár-Varga, Bernadett; Jánoska, Ferenc

    2017-04-01

    Several previous study results have already demonstrated that golden jackal and red fox may serve as biological indicators of trace elements and heavy metal concentrations in the various regions they inhabit. The aim of this study was to evaluate accumulation patterns of targeted elements (Al, Ca, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn, Ni and Pb) in liver samples of red foxes and golden jackals collected during the same period in the southern part of Romania. The accumulation patterns of trace elements in the livers of sympatric golden jackal and red fox were practically the same. To date, separate studies of the species individually in different habitats have shown that either of the species can be used for ecotoxicological and biomonitoring studies. Moreover, in general gender related studies, no significant differences in the concentrations of the investigated elements were found in either jackals or foxes. Also, average metal concentrations in liver samples do not show significant differences between groups under and above 12 months of age.

  4. WITHDRAWN: Clinical Signs, Neuroanatomical Distribution and Histopathological Characterisation of Meningoencephalitis in Wild Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes) Associated with a Novel fox Circovirus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoll, A L; Mitchell, J A; Priestnall, S L

    2016-07-05

    This article has been withdrawn at the request of the author(s) and/or editor. The Publisher apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause. The full Elsevier Policy on Article Withdrawal can be found at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/withdrawalpolicy. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Comparison of reliability of five patellar position indices at various stifle joint angles in pelvic limbs obtained from cadavers of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miles, James E; Nielsen, Dorte H; Jensen, Bente Rona

    2012-01-01

    To compare 5 patellar position indices at various stifle joint angles in cadavers of red foxes, determine measurement reliability, and assess the suitability of these indices for clinical use.......To compare 5 patellar position indices at various stifle joint angles in cadavers of red foxes, determine measurement reliability, and assess the suitability of these indices for clinical use....

  6. Relative habitat use by the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Köprülü Canyon National Park, Southern Anatolia

    OpenAIRE

    Soyumert, Anil; Gürkan, Behzat

    2013-01-01

    Large carnivore mammals are one of the indicators for healthy ecosystems. Therefore, it is important to gather scientific data about carnivores for comprehensive conservation plans. Red fox is one of the carnivore species with widest distribution in Anatolia. In the present study habitat use of red fox was investigated to contribute to reduce the insufficiency of knowledge about carnivores in Turkey. Scent-station method was used to reveal relative habitat use of red fox in Köprülü Canyon Nat...

  7. Endoparasites of the raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) and the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark 2009–2012 – A comparative study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Chriél, Mariann; Jensen, Trine Hammer; Enemark, Heidi Larsen

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species negatively influence the biodiversity of the ecosystems they invade and may introduce pathogens to native species. Raccoon dogs have very successfully invaded Europe, including, recently, Denmark. This study included analyses of gastrointestinal helminths and Trichinella spp. from 99 raccoon dogs and 384 native red foxes collected from October 2009 to March 2012. The sedimentation and counting method used revealed that raccoon dogs and foxes harboured 9 and 13 different helminth species, respectively, of which several known to be zoonotic. Significantly more nematode and cestode species were found in foxes while raccoon dogs had more trematode species. Rodent transmitted parasites were more prevalent in foxes, while amphibian transmitted parasites were more prevalent in raccoon dogs. One fox was infected with Echinococcus multilocularis (0.3%), while no Trichinella spp. were detected in raccoon dogs or foxes. The trematode Brachylaima tokudai was detected for the first time in Denmark in five of 384 foxes (1.3%). Prevalences of Pygidiopsis summa (3.0% and 3.4%) and Cryptocotyle spp. (15.2% and 15.4%) were comparable in raccoon dogs and foxes, respectively. Four helminth species were more prevalent in foxes than in raccoon dogs: Toxocara canis (60.9% and 13.1%); Uncinaria stenocephala (84.1% and 48.5%); Mesocestoides spp. (42.7% and 23.2%); and Taenia spp. (30.7% and 2.0%), respectively. Three helminth species were more prevalent in raccoon dogs than in foxes: Dipylidium caninum (5.1% and 0.3%); Mesorchis denticulatus (38.4% and 4.2%); and Alaria alata (69.7% and 34.4%), respectively. T. canis was more abundant in foxes while A. alata was more abundant in raccoon dogs. The intestinal distribution of a number of helminth species was comparable between hosts, but highly variable between parasite species. Inherent biological factors and host invasion of new areas might have shaped these marked differences in helminth fauna between the invasive raccoon dog and the native red fox. PMID:24533328

  8. First report of Eucoleus boehmi in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark, based on coprological examiantion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Kapel, Christian Moliin Outzen

    2013-01-01

    the first observations of E. boehmi in Denmark, which is likely an overlooked infection of the upper respiratory tract of red foxes, which can be also found in other canids. Several morphological features of the eggs of E. boehmi can be used to distinguish it from other the closely related trichuroid eggs......Red foxes can be infected with diverse range of parasite species that can be transmitted to humans and pet animals, and the differential diagnosis is essential for veterinary and zoonotic risk assessment. In the present study, faecal flotation and microscopy of parasite eggs was done on 31 foxes...

  9. Fluoride in the bones of foxes (Vulpes vulpes Linneaus, 1758) and raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides Gray, 1834) from North-Western Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palczewska-Komsa, Mirona; Kalisińska, Elzbieta; Kosik-Bogacka, Danuta I; Lanocha, Natalia; Budis, Halina; Baranowska-Bosiacka, Irena; Gutowska, Izabela; Chlubek, Dariusz

    2014-07-01

    Assessment of exposure to fluoride (F(-)) is increasingly focused on mineralized tissues, mainly bones. Their periodic growth and continuous reconstruction make them a good material for studying long-term F(-) accumulation. In this study, F(-)concentrations were determined in the bones of foxes and raccoon dogs from north-western Poland and relationships between bone F(-) and the age categories of the animals were attempted to be identified. Bone samples were collected from femurs of 32 foxes (15 males and 17 females) and 18 raccoon dogs (10 males and 8 females) from polluted, medium-polluted, and unpolluted by F(-) areas. Bone F(-) was determined by potentiometric method, and results were expressed per dry weight (dw); they ranged from 176 to 3,668 mg/kg dw in foxes and from 84 to 1,190 mg/kg dw in raccoon dogs. Foxes from north-western Poland accumulated much more F(-) in their bones than raccoon dogs. Our study shows that the assessment of hazards created by industrial emitters can be conducted conveniently by the measurements of fluorine content in hard tissues of wild animals. Due to availability of such type of material for studies, it seems that the analysis of fluoride content in bones can be a good tool in the development of ecotoxicology.

  10. Analisi comparativa della dieta di alcuni carnivori opportunisti (Vulpes vulpes, Martes foina, Meles meles in Europa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Maria De Marinis

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available L'ecologia alimentare della volpe, del tasso ed in misura minore della faina è stata ampiamente studiata in diverse aree comprese all'interno degli areali di queste 3 specie. La variazione geografica delle abitudini alimentari di questi carnivori definiti opportunisti è al contrario decisamente poco nota. Scopo del presente lavoro è la descrizione della variazione della dieta di faina, tasso e volpe attraverso l'Europa ed in secondo luogo l'analisi comparativa delle strategie alimentari adottate da questi carnivori. Sono stati analizzati 19 studi per la volpe, 11 per la faina e 23 per il tasso. Sono stati presi in considerazione soltanto gli studi della durata di almeno un anno nei quali la composizione della dieta, determinata tramite analisi delle feci, fosse espressa in percentuale di volume o biomassa e le categorie alimentari fossero dettagliatamente descritte. Gli studi sono stati divisi in gruppi in base alla regione climatica di appartenenza (mediterranea, centroeuropea, atlantica e boreale. Le categorie alimentari utilizzate nell'analisi della variabilità geografica sono: mammiferi, uccelli, anfibi, artropodi, lombrichi, altro animale, frutta, cereali, rifiuti. L'analisi delle componenti principali, condotta separatamente sulle 3 specie, ha consentito l'individuazione su di un grafico bidimensionale di due gruppi riferibili all'Europa centro-settentrionale ed alla regione mediterranea, con una percentuale di variabilità spiegata > 76% per ognuna delle 3 specie. La composizione della dieta del primo gruppo risulta caratterizzata da elevate percentuali di mammiferi e secondariamente uccelli per la volpe, uccelli ed altro animale per la faina e lombrichi, cereali ed anfibi per il tasso. La composizione della dieta nella regione mediterranea risulta invece caratterizzata da elevate percentuali di artropodi e frutta per tutte e 3 le specie di carnivori. L'analisi dicriminante ha consentito di differenziare gli studi condotti in ambiente mediterraneo in base al consumo di mammiferi che si è rivelato elevato nella volpe, ridotto nel tasso e variabile nella faina. Viene discussa la convergenza verso una dieta insettivora e frugivora in ambiente mediterraneo da parte di 3 carnivori opportunisti.

  11. Pathological findings in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), stone marten (Martes foina) and raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), with special emphasis on infectious and zoonotic agents in Northern Germany

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lempp, Charlotte; Jungwirth, Nicole; Grilo, Miguel L; Reckendorf, Anja; Ulrich, Arlena; van Neer, Abbo; Bodewes, Rogier; Pfankuche, Vanessa M; Bauer, Christian; Osterhaus, Albert D M E; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Siebert, Ursula

    2017-01-01

    Anthropogenic landscape changes contributed to the reduction of availability of habitats to wild animals. Hence, the presence of wild terrestrial carnivores in urban and peri-urban sites has increased considerably over the years implying an increased risk of interspecies spillover of infectious

  12. Pathological findings in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), stone marten (Martes foina) and raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), with special emphasis on infectious and zoonotic agents in Northern Germany

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C. Lempp (Charlotte); A. Jungwirth (Andreas); Grilo, M.L. (Miguel L.); Reckendorf, A. (Anja); Ulrich, A. (Arlena); Van Neer, A. (Abbo); R. Bodewes (Rogier); V.M. Pfankuche (Vanessa M.); Bauer, C. (Christian); A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert); V. Baumgärtner (Volkmar); U. Siebert (Ursula)

    2017-01-01

    textabstractAnthropogenic landscape changes contributed to the reduction of availability of habitats to wild animals. Hence, the presence of wild terrestrial carnivores in urban and peri-urban sites has increased considerably over the years implying an increased risk of interspecies spillover of

  13. Sequence analysis of the Ras-MAPK pathway genes SOS1, EGFR & GRB2 in silver foxes (Vulpes vulpes): candidate genes for hereditary hyperplastic gingivitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Jo-Anna B J; Tully, Sara J; Dawn Marshall, H

    2014-12-01

    Hereditary hyperplastic gingivitis (HHG) is an autosomal recessive disease that presents with progressive gingival proliferation in farmed silver foxes. Hereditary gingival fibromatosis (HGF) is an analogous condition in humans that is genetically heterogeneous with several known autosomal dominant loci. For one locus the causative mutation is in the Son of sevenless homologue 1 (SOS1) gene. For the remaining loci, the molecular mechanisms are unknown but Ras pathway involvement is suspected. Here we compare sequences for the SOS1 gene, and two adjacent genes in the Ras pathway, growth receptor bound protein 2 (GRB2) and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), between HHG-affected and unaffected foxes. We conclude that the known HGF causative mutation does not cause HHG in foxes, nor do the coding regions or intron-exon boundaries of these three genes contain any candidate mutations for fox gum disease. Patterns of molecular evolution among foxes and other mammals reflect high conservation and strong functional constraints for SOS1 and GRB2 but reveal a lineage-specific pattern of variability in EGFR consistent with mutational rate differences, relaxed functional constraints, and possibly positive selection.

  14. Primi dati radiotelemetrici sul comportamento di dispersione della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in un'area costiera del Friuli-Venezia Giulia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Roppa

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Nel 2001 e 2002 in provincia di Gorizia (loc. Isola della Cona, Riserva Naturale Regionale Foce dell?Isonzo due giovani maschi di volpe sono stati marcati con radiocollari, al fine di raccogliere dati sulla loro dispersione. L?area di studio, di circa 20 km², presenta zone boscose, boscaglie golenali, prati umidi, canneti e barene, inserite, comunque, in un territorio soggetto ad agricoltura intensiva. Gli animali sono stati seguiti per 12 ore/notte nella prima fase e successivamente per 12 ore/settimana, suddivise in 3 turni tali da coprire l?intero arco della notte. La posizione è stata rilevata ogni 20 min. Il primo individuo (M1 è stato seguito dal 15.11.01 al 10.12.01 per 140 ore; il secondo (M2 dal 14.06.02 al 22.03.03 per 580 ore; la dispersione è iniziata il 17.11.01 per M1 e il 10.11.02 per M2. Entrambi hanno attraversato il fiume Isonzo, in un tratto ampio 145 m, in direzione Sud/Est, raggiungendo una zona agricola. In seguito non hanno mostrato la tendenza a tornare indietro, probabilmente a causa della presenza di un maschio territoriale. Durante il giorno non si sono verificati spostamenti apprezzabili. La massima area coperta per notte (metodo del Minimo Poligono Convesso è stata di 10,7 km² per M1 (settima notte e di 5,1 km² per M2 (diciassettesima notte. I punti più distanti raggiunti in linea d?aria rispetto a quello di attraversamento del fiume sono stati di 9,2 km per M1 e di 9,9 km per M2. La direzione e alcune delle traiettorie percorse sono risultate sovrapponibili per i due individui. Le convergenze di eventi che emergono dai risultati, raccolti a distanza di un anno, suggeriscono una certa obbligatorietà nei percorsi che potrebbe essere dovuta sia alla struttura territoriale che alla densità della popolazione di volpi (stimata tramite conteggio delle tane attive in 10-12 individui in periodo primaverile e in 27-30 individui in periodo autunnale. Si ipotizza una certa stabilità dei territori degli individui residenti, che emerge anche dall?uso di alcuni siti di riposo diurno comuni per M1 e M2 e dal continuo vagare di M2 in un?ampia area, anche 3 mesi dopo la dispersione. Il lavoro è stato svolto in collaborazione con la Stazione Biologica ?Isola della Cona? (SBIC e con la Cooperativa Ecothema. Si ringraziano tutti i volontari che hanno reso possibile la raccolta dati.

  15. The effect of host age and inoculation dose on infection dynamics of Angiostrongylus vasorum in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Webster, Pia; Monrad, Jesper; Kapel, Christian

    2017-01-01

    , as reflected in high establishment rates. Although severe clinical disease was never observed in the foxes, A. vasorum infections in red foxes appear to be chronic and moreover, to resemble infections in dogs. The results underline the red fox as a suitable model as well as natural reservoir for the parasite....

  16. Endoparasites of the raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) and the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Denmark 2009–2012 – A comparative study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Al-Sabi, Mohammad Nafi Solaiman; Chriél, Mariann; Jensen, Trine Hammer

    2013-01-01

    from 99 raccoon dogs and 384 native red foxes collected from October 2009 to March 2012. The sedimentation and counting method revealed that raccoon dogs and foxes respectively harboured 9 and 13 different helminth species, of which several were of zoonotic significance. Significantly more nematode...

  17. Host-specific serological response to Angiostrongylus vasorum infection in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gillis-Germitsch, N.; Kapel, Christian; Thamsborg, Stig Milan

    2017-01-01

    Angiostrongylus vasorum is a cardiovascular nematode increasingly found in dogs and foxes in endemic foci throughout Europe. The present study evaluates ELISAs for detection of circulating antigens and specific antibodies against A. vasorum in foxes. Blood and worm burdens (WBs) from carcasses...... was observed 7 weeks later. We hypothesize that infected foxes develop a variable and non-protective immunity. Such parasite tolerance allows long-term survival of A. vasorum in the animals, and may explain why the parasite appears to spread rapidly within a fox population, an epidemiological dynamic...

  18. Nutrient digestibility in Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus fed diets containing animal meals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Gugołek

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Three digestibility experiments on Arctic foxes were carried out. Control groups were fed standard diets (C1 and C2 composed of fresh or frozen animal by-products and steamed ground grain. Dry experimental diets (E1 and E2 contained animal meals, extracted meals and fat, were mixed with water prior to administration. In a preliminary experiment, the digestibility of dry diet E1 moistened with water for 15min and 24h was compared to determine the optimum moistening time during the experimental period proper. The preliminary experiment showed that moistening time had no significant effect on digestibility. In the main experiment, two independent digestibility trials were performed to compare the digestibility of diets fed to foxes during growth (C1 vs. E1 and fur development (C2 vs. E2. Better nutrient digestibility was noted for control diets, compared to experimental. The greatest differences were reported for total protein digestibility. Protein contained in meals undergoes denaturation during heat treatment, which reduces digestibility. It was found that the retention of nitrogen in relation to nitrogen digestion was higher in foxes fed experimental diets (E1 and E2.

  19. Skin impression with acetate tape in Demodex canis and Scarcoptes scabiei var. vulpes diagnosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D.T. Pereira

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available This study compares the efficacy of skin impression with acetate tape and the deep skin scraping test to find D. canis and S. scabiei in dogs. During six months, 134 samples were collected by both techniques from 115 dogs treated at the dermatology service of the Veterinary Hospital of the Federal University of Santa Maria (HVU-UFSM. Of these patients, 27 had demodicosis and 12 had scabies. The impression with acetate tape test (ITT was shown to be significantly superior to the deep skin scraping test (DSST in finding D. canis and S. scabiei mites (p = 0.007. Based on our results we could conclude that acetate tape impression is a reliable method for diagnosing and monitoring therapy of dermatopathies caused by mites and can be used to replace the traditional deep skin scraping method. In addition, since it is less traumatic for the dog, this method shows more acceptance by the owner.

  20. Environmental variables and the use of habitat of the Red fox Vulpes vulpes (L., 1758 in the Maremma Natural Park, Grosseto province, Central Italy / Parametri ambientali e uso dell'habitat della volpe Vulpes vulpes (L., 1758 in alcune aree del Parco Naturale della Maremma (GR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandro Lovari

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Berries of Juniperus oxycedrus, beetles and grasshoppers were the staple of the fox diet in the coastal ecotone of the Maremma Natural Park, while fruit and Insects were the main food resources in a rural zone around the park. Chiefly berries of J. oxycedrus, but also Insects and carrion, built up the greater part of the fox diet in the pinewood. On average, the presence in diet was correlated with the availability of the main food resources, which in turn was correlated with climatic factors. These influenced also the activity pattern of the Red fox. Home ranges were the largest (330 ha in the pinewood, intermediate (213 ha in the coastal ecotone, and smallest (131 ha in the rural zone. Such differences in size may be explained with the local pattern of food distribution and abundance, which also influenced the habitat use of the fox. In spite of the presence of several farm houses in the rural range, poultry and domestic rabbits were almost absent in the fox diet. The scrubwood (macchia was consistently the most preferred vegetation type. Riassunto Frutti di ginepro (Juniperus oxycedrus, Coleotteri e Ortotteri hanno costituito la maggior parte della dieta della Volpe nell'ecotone costiero del Parco Naturale della Maremma, mentre frutti e Insetti sono stati le principali risorse trofiche in una zona rurale nella parte esterna del parco. Nella pineta la dieta è risultata costituita prevalentemente da frutti di ginepro, ma anche da insetti e carogne. In media la presenza nella dieta delle principali risorse alimentari è risultata correlata con la loro disponibilità, la quale si è dimostrata a sua volta correlata con fattori climatici. Questi ultimi hanno influenzato anche il ritmo di attività della Volpe. Le dimensioni degli home range sono risultate massime (330 ha nella pineta, intermedie (213 ha nell'ecotone costiero e minime (131 ha nella zona rurale. Queste differenze possono essere spiegate in base alla locale distribuzione e abbondanza del cibo, le quali influenzano anche l'uso dell'habitat da parte della Volpe. Nonostante la presenza di alcuni poderi nella zona rurale, gli animali domestici sono risultati assenti nella dieta della Volpe. La macchia è stata decisamente il tipo di vegetazione preferito.

  1. A case of Trichophyton mentagrophytes infection in a fennec fox (Vulpes zerda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pressanti, Charline; Delverdier, Maxence; Iriart, Xavier; Morcel, Frédérique; Cadiergues, Marie-Christine

    2012-10-01

    A 2-year-old male fennec fox presented with a 4 month history of nonpruritic, crusty skin lesions on the forehead, the pinnae and the tail tip. Initial investigations, including routine haematology, biochemistry profile, multiple skin scrapings, trichoscopic examination, Wood's lamp examination and fungal culture, failed to reveal any abnormalities. Histopathological examination of a first set of skin biopsies showed an interface dermatitis pattern, with lymphocyte infiltration in the basal layer, a significant lymphocytic exocytosis and occasional apoptotic basal epidermal keratinocytes; periodic acid Schiff stain did not reveal any fungal elements. On further biopsies, there was a pustular neutrophilic dermatitis, with numerous crusts containing high numbers of arthrospores and fungal hyphae. Trichophyton mentagrophytes infection was confirmed on fungal culture and PCR. The fennec fox received oral itraconazole (5 mg/kg once daily for 6 weeks) combined with a miconazole and chlorhexidine shampoo applied on affected areas once weekly, followed with an enilconazole dip. The fox improved dramatically, and a fungal culture performed at 6 weeks was negative. Unfortunately, a few days later the fennec fox developed anorexia, icterus and died. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of Trichophyton infection in a fennec fox and, although a postmortem examination was not performed, this is possibly the first report of fatal acute liver failure associated with itraconazole in a canid. © 2012 The Authors. Veterinary Dermatology © 2012 ESVD and ACVD.

  2. Ontogeny of swift fox Vulpes velox vocalizations: production, usage and response

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Darden, Safi-Kirstine Klem; Dabelsteen, Torben

    2006-01-01

    Three processes, production, usage, and response, can be used to describe vocal ontogeny. They may develop independently of each other for a given vocalization and a given species as a result of the different selective pressures associated with each process. We have investigated vocal ontogeny in...... with their first appearance in the juvenile repertoire. The results indicate that there is variation in the degree (in terms of the number of vocal types) of modification over time among the three processes....

  3. On the activity of two medium-sized canids: the Golden Jackal (Canis aureus and the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes in the Natural Bark “Sinite Kamani” (Bulgaria revealed by camera traps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ALEXANDAR MECHEV

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Daylight activity in both species was often registered during the cold seasons. Foxes were registered to be active between 7-9h and 12-14h, while the jackals – during the whole day. Activity of both predators was rising during the night. The number of photographs increased from around 17h and activity was high until morning around 9-10h.

  4. Ultra structure differentiation of the anterior pituitary cells of the adult female non pregnant carnivore Vulpes zerda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atteyat Selim

    2016-05-01

    The ACTH cells are found singly, irregular with eccentric nucleus. Its secretory granules are small and spherical shaped, while the TSH cells have very small secretory granules, but the FSH and LH cells are found singly, angular shape with eccentric nuclei and the its secretary granules are spherical or ovoid shaped and exhibit variation in electron density than STH cells. The differences in shape and distribution may be related to the phylogeny.

  5. Egyptian Journal of Biology - Vol 7 (2005)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Egyptian Journal of Biology. ... Induced by Copper and Cadmium Stress in Broad Beans (Vicia faba L.) EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT ... Food composition and feeding ecology of the Red Fox Vulpes vulpes (Linnaeus, ...

  6. Genetic signatures of adaptation revealed from transcriptome sequencing of Arctic and red foxes

    OpenAIRE

    Kumar, Vikas; Kutschera, Verena E.; Nilsson, Maria A.; Janke, Axel

    2015-01-01

    Background The genus Vulpes (true foxes) comprises numerous species that inhabit a wide range of habitats and climatic conditions, including one species, the Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) which is adapted to the arctic region. A close relative to the Arctic fox, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), occurs in subarctic to subtropical habitats. To study the genetic basis of their adaptations to different environments, transcriptome sequences from two Arctic foxes and one red fox individual were generated...

  7. A phylogenetic analysis of basal metabolism, total evaporative water loss, and life-history among foxes from desert and mesic regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Williams, JB; Munoz-Garcia, A; Ostrowski, S; Tieleman, BI

    We measured basal metabolic rate (BMR) and total evaporative water loss (TEWL) of species of foxes that exist on the Arabian Peninsula, Blanford's fox (Vulpes cana) and two subspecies of Red fox (Vulpes vulpes). Combining these data with that on other canids from the literature, we searched for

  8. Prevalence of antibodies against canine distemper virus among red foxes in Luxembourg

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    B.C. Damien; S. Losch; J. Mossong; C.P. Muller (Claude); A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert); B.E.E. Martina (Byron)

    2002-01-01

    textabstractCanine distemper virus (CDV) has a wide host spectrum, and during the past years, distemper has been observed in species that were previously not considered to be susceptible. In this study, we investigated the prevalence of CDV-specific antibodies in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) sampled

  9. Increased reproductive output of Danish red fox females following an outbreak of canine distemper

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pagh, Sussie; Chriél, Mariann; Madsen, Aksel Bo

    2018-01-01

    A decline in the Danish population of red foxes Vulpes vulpes due to an outbreak of canine distemper (CDV) in 2012 gave us the opportunity to test the hypothesis that the reproductive performance of foxes increases when the population density declines. The reproductive performance of 280 female...

  10. Prevalence of antibodies against canine distemper virus among red foxes in Luxembourg.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    B.C. Damien; B.E.E. Martina (Byron); S. Losch; A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert); C.P. Muller (Claude)

    2002-01-01

    textabstractCanine distemper virus (CDV) has a wide host spectrum, and during the past years, distemper has been observed in species that were previously not considered to be susceptible. In this study, we investigated the prevalence of CDV-specific antibodies in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) sampled

  11. Echinococcus multilocularis: An Emerging Pathogen in Hungary and Central Eastern Europe?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sréter, Tamás; Széll, Zoltán; Egyed, Zsuzsa

    2003-01-01

    Echinococcus multilocularis, the causative agent of human alveolar echinococcosis, is reported for the first time in Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Hungary. This parasite may be spreading eastward because the population of foxes has increased because of human interventions, and this spread may result in the emergence of alveolar echinococcosis in Central Eastern Europe. PMID:12643838

  12. The prevalance of Echinococcus multilocularis in foxes in Limburg 2002-2003

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giessen JWB van der; Vries A de; Chu ML; Stortelder V; Mulder JL; Lezenne Coulander C de; Teunis P; MGB

    2004-01-01

    This report describes a survey carried out between January 2002 and March 2003 to determine the prevalence of Echinococcus multilocularis in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in the province of Limburg, the Netherlands. Echinococcus multilocularis is the causative agent of alveolar echinococcosis, a very

  13. Helminths of Wild Predatory Mammals (Mammalia, Carnivora of Ukraine. Trematodes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Korol E. N.

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The paper summarises information on 11 species of trematodes parasitic in 9 species of wild carnivorans of Ukraine. The largest number of trematode species (9 was found in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes. Alaria alata (Diplostomidae appeared to be the most common trematode parasite in the studied group; it was found in 4 host species from 9 administrative regions and Crimea.

  14. Activity rhythms and distribution of natal dens for red foxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenyang, Zhou; Wanhong, Wei; Biggins, Dean E.

    1995-01-01

    The red fox, Vulpes vulpes, was investigated with snow tracking, radiotracking and directive observation at the Haibei Research Station of Alpine Meadow Ecosystem, Academia Sinica, from March to September 1994. The objectives of this study were to determine the distribution and use of natal dens, activity rhythms, and home range sizes for the foxes.

  15. The origin of recently established red fox populations in the United States: translocations or natural range expansions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark J. Statham; Benjamin N. Sacks; Keith B. Aubry; John D. Perrine; Samantha M. Wisely

    2012-01-01

    Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are native to boreal and western montane portions of North America but their origins are unknown in many lowland areas of the United States. Red foxes were historically absent from much of the East Coast at the time of European settlement and did not become common until the mid-1800s. Some early naturalists described an...

  16. Lessons from long-term predator control: a case study with the red fox

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kirkwood, R.J.; Sutherland, D.R.; Murphy, S.; Dann, P.

    2014-01-01

    Context: Predator-control aims to reduce an impact on prey species, but efficacy of long-term control is rarely assessed and the reductions achieved are rarely quantified. Aims: We evaluated the changing efficacy of a 58-year-long campaign against red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) on Phillip Island, a

  17. Associations between biosecurity and outbreaks of canine distemper on Danish mink farms in 2012-2013

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregers-Jensen, Louise; Agger, Jens Frederik; Hammer, Anne Sofie Vedsted

    2015-01-01

    distemper virus. Mortality was only assessed on the case farms, and there was a non-significantly lower mortality on vaccinated farms than on the non-vaccinated farms. Furthermore, the proportion of farms with observations of wild red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) inside the farm enclosures were larger for case...

  18. North American montane red foxes: expansion, fragmentation, and the origin of the Sacramento Valley red fox

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin N. Sacks; Mark J. Statham; John D. Perrine; Samantha M. Wisely; Keith B. Aubry

    2010-01-01

    Most native red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in the western contiguous United States appear to be climatically restricted to colder regions in the major mountain ranges and, in some areas, have suffered precipitous declines in abundance that may be linked to warming trends. However, another population of unknown origin has occurred in arid habitats in the...

  19. Genetic characteristics of red foxes In northeastern Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory A Green; Benjamin N Sacks; Leonard J Erickson; Keith B Aubry

    2017-01-01

    The Rocky Mountain Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes macroura), once common in the Blue Mountains ecoregion of northeastern Oregon, was considered rare in eastern Oregon by the 1930s and thought to be extirpated by the 1960s, when putatively new Red Fox populations began to appear. Although the new foxes were long presumed to be nonnative (originating from...

  20. Peroral Echinococcus multilocularis egg inoculation in Myodes glareolus, Mesocricetus auratus and Mus musculus (CD-1 IGS and C57BL/6j)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Woolsey, Ian David; Jensen, Per Moestrup; Deplazes, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Echinococcus multilocularis transmission predominantly occurs in Europe between the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and various species of rodent intermediate hosts. We infected 3 species of rodent, Myodes glareolus (n = 47), Mesocricetus auratus (n = 11) and outbred Mus musculus (CD-1 IGS) (n = 9...

  1. Udvikling i ynglebestanden af Fjordterner i Danmark 1970-2012

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bregnballe, Thomas; Jørgensen, Hans Erik

    2013-01-01

    of declines in these areas are generally unknown. However, there are indications that for some of the former key localities, declining numbers were related to increasing occurrence of red fox Vulpes vulpes. In recent years, Common Terns have bred in fairly high numbers and with high success on small islets...

  2. Preliminary evaluation of the tibial tuberosity-trochlear groove measurement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miles, James Edward; Kirpensteijn, Jolle; Svalastoga, Eiliv Lars

    guide surgical treatment. The TTTG measures tibial tuberosity position relative to the axis of the femoral trochlea. A preliminary investigation of TTTG measurement was performed using the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) cadavers as a morphologically similar and homogenous substitute for dog cadavers. CT...

  3. Echinococcus multilocularis in carnivores from the Klatovy district of the Czech Republic

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Martínek, K.; Kolářová, L.; Červený, Jaroslav

    2001-01-01

    Roč. 75, c. 1 (2001), s. 61-66 ISSN 0022-149X R&D Projects: GA MZd NJ4962 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6093917 Keywords : alveolar echinococcosis * Vulpes vulpes * red fox Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 0.698, year: 2001 http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?aid=709408

  4. The quadriceps angle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miles, James Edward; Frederiksen, Jane V.; Jensen, Bente Rona

    2012-01-01

    : Pelvic limbs from red foxes (Vulpes vulpes). METHODS: Q angles were measured on hip dysplasia (HD) and whole limb (WL) view radiographs of each limb between the acetabular rim, mid-point (Q1: patellar center, Q2: femoral trochlea), and tibial tuberosity. Errors of 0.5-2.0 mm at measurement landmarks...

  5. Malleefowl conservation in New South Wales: a review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Priddel, D.; Wheeler, R.

    1999-01-01

    Together with land clearance, grazing by stock and inappropriate fire regimes, predation by the introduced European red fox Vulpes vulpes (Linnaeus, 1758) has decimated populations of malleefowl Leipoa ocellata Gould, 1840. The decline of the malleefowl has been most pronounced in New South Wales,

  6. Increase in number of helminth species from Dutch red foxes over a 35-year period.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Franssen, Frits; Nijsse, Rolf; Mulder, Jaap; Cremers, Herman J W M; Dam, Cecile; Takumi, Katsuhisa; van der Giessen, Joke

    2014-01-01

    Background The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is host to a community of zoonotic and other helminth species. Tracking their community structure and dynamics over decades is one way to monitor the long term risk of parasitic infectious diseases relevant to public and veterinary health. Methods We identified

  7. Range-wide multilocus phylogeography of the red fox reveals ancient continental divergence, minimal genomic exchange and distinct demographic histories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark J. Statham; James Murdoch; Jan Janecka; Keith B. Aubry; Ceiridwen J. Edwards; Carl D. Soulsbury; Oliver Berry; Zhenghuan Wang; David Harrison; Malcolm Pearch; Louise Tomsett; Judith Chupasko; Benjamin N. Sacks

    2014-01-01

    Widely distributed taxa provide an opportunity to compare biogeographic responses to climatic fluctuations on multiple continents and to investigate speciation. We conducted the most geographically and genomically comprehensive study to date of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), the world’s most widely distributed wild terrestrial carnivore. Analyses of 697 bp of...

  8. Red fox takeover of arctic fox breeding den : an observation from Yamal Peninsula, Russia

    OpenAIRE

    Rodnikova, Anna; Ims, Rolf Anker; Sokolov, Alexander; Skogstad, Gunhild; Sokolov, Vasily; Shtro, Victor; Fuglei, Eva

    2011-01-01

    Here, we report from the first direct observation of a red fox (Vulpes vulpes) intrusion on an arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) breeding den from the southern Arctic tundra of Yamal Peninsula, Russia in 2007. At the same time, as a current range retraction of the original inhabitant of the circumpolar tundra zone the arctic fox is going on, the red fox is expanding their range from the south into arctic habitats. Thus, within large parts of the northern tundra areas the two species are sympatric w...

  9. Species distribution model for swift fox in Nebraska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-11-28

    The grasslands of Nebraska are highly altered due to anthropogenic development and : degradation. The loss and degradation of grasslands has significantly impacted populations of : swift fox (Vulpes velox), a Nebraska Natural Legacy Plan Tier1 at ...

  10. A Serological Survey of Infectious Disease in Yellowstone National Park?s Canid Community

    OpenAIRE

    Almberg, Emily S.; Mech, L. David; Smith, Douglas W.; Sheldon, Jennifer W.; Crabtree, Robert L.

    2009-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Gray wolves (Canis lupus) were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park (YNP) after a >70 year absence, and as part of recovery efforts, the population has been closely monitored. In 1999 and 2005, pup survival was significantly reduced, suggestive of disease outbreaks. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We analyzed sympatric wolf, coyote (Canis latrans), and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) serologic data from YNP, spanning 1991-2007, to identify long-term patterns of pathogen exposure, i...

  11. A rural mail-carrier index of North Dakota red foxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, S.H.; Sargeant, A.B.

    1975-01-01

    Rural mail-carrier sightings of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) during mid-April, -July, and -September of 1969-73 were compared to spring fox family estimates derived by aerial searches of six townships. The mid-April mail-carrier index reflected annual fox density changes on the six townships (correlation coefficient = 0.958) . Random exclusions of individual mail-carrier reports indicated participation could decline 40 percent without affecting index accuracy.

  12. Homage to Hersteinsson and Macdonald: climate warming and resource subsidies cause red fox range expansion and Arctic fox decline

    OpenAIRE

    Elmhagen, Bodil; Berteaux, Dominique; Burgess, Robert. M.; Ehrich, Dorothee; Gallant, Daniel; Henttonen, Heikki; Ims, Rolf Anker; Killengreen, Siw Turid; Niemimaa, Jukka; Norén, Karin; Ollila, Tuomo; Rodnikova, Anna Y.; Sokolov, Aleksandr A.; Sokolova, Natasha A.; Stickney, Alice A.

    2017-01-01

    Source at http://doi.org/10.1080/17518369.2017.1319109 Climate change can have a marked effect on the distribution and abundance of some species, as well as their interspecific interactions. In 1992, before ecological effects of anthropogenic climate change had developed into a topical research field, Hersteinsson and Macdonald published a seminal paper hypothesizing that the northern distribution limit of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is determined by food availability and ultim...

  13. Roads do not increase predation on experimental nests in a highly fragmented forest land

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Svobodová, Jana; Šálek, M.; Albrecht, Tomáš

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 56, č. 1 (2007), s. 84-89 ISSN 0139-7893 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/01/1203 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : artificial nest predation * black grouse * red fox Vulpes vulpes * travel line hypothesis Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.376, year: 2007 http://www.ivb.cz/folia/56/1/84-89_MS1260.pdf

  14. Are Wildlife Detector Dogs or People Better at Finding Desert Tortoises (Gopherus Agassizii)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-02-01

    Davenport, M.C. Smith, and J.E. Maldonado. 2003. Detection and accuracy rates of dogs trained to find scats of San Joaquin Kit Foxes (Vulpes macrotis...Herpetological Conservation and Biology 3(1):103-115. 114 Relative abundance of endangered San Joaquin Kit Foxes (Vulpes macrotis mutica) based on...trainer. She is also with the Contra Costa County (CA) Sheriff Office and oversees their bomb dog and search and rescue dog programs. JULIE YEE

  15. Identification of Multiple Novel Viruses, Including a Parvovirus and a Hepevirus, in Feces of Red Foxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Giessen, Joke; Haagmans, Bart L.; Osterhaus, Albert D. M. E.; Smits, Saskia L.

    2013-01-01

    Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are the most widespread members of the order of Carnivora. Since they often live in (peri)urban areas, they are a potential reservoir of viruses that transmit from wildlife to humans or domestic animals. Here we evaluated the fecal viral microbiome of 13 red foxes by random PCR in combination with next-generation sequencing. Various novel viruses, including a parvovirus, bocavirus, adeno-associated virus, hepevirus, astroviruses, and picobirnaviruses, were identified. PMID:23616657

  16. A meiotic linkage map of the silver fox, aligned and compared to the canine genome

    OpenAIRE

    Kukekova, Anna V.; Trut, Lyudmila N.; Oskina, Irina N.; Johnson, Jennifer L.; Temnykh, Svetlana V.; Kharlamova, Anastasiya V.; Shepeleva, Darya V.; Gulievich, Rimma G.; Shikhevich, Svetlana G.; Graphodatsky, Alexander S.; Aguirre, Gustavo D.; Acland, Gregory M.

    2007-01-01

    A meiotic linkage map is essential for mapping traits of interest and is often the first step toward understanding a cryptic genome. Specific strains of silver fox (a variant of the red fox, Vulpes vulpes), which segregate behavioral and morphological phenotypes, create a need for such a map. One such strain, selected for docility, exhibits friendly dog-like responses to humans, in contrast to another strain selected for aggression. Development of a fox map is facilitated by the known cytogen...

  17. Final Environmental Assessment for Stormwater Drainage Project on F. E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-05-01

    Taxidea taxus), raccoon (Procyon lotor hirtus), porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum), red fox (Vulpes vulpes), coyote (Canus latrans), and Wyoming ground...squirrel (Spermophilus elegans). A relatively large herd of pronghorn antelope inhabits the base. Although the pronghorn on the installation are a...part of the larger Iron Mountain herd , most reside on the installation year-round. The Storm Water Drainage Project, Draft Environmental Assessment

  18. Lung and hearth nematodes in some Spanish mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez, F; Iglesias, R; Bos, J; Rey, J; Sanmartin Durán, M L

    1991-01-01

    Thirteen host species belonging to the orders Rodentia, Insectivora and Carnivora from various localities in Galicia (NW Spain) were examined for heart and lung parasites. The following species were found: Parastrongylus dujardini (5.5%) in Apodemus sylvaticus, Crenosoma striatum in Erinaceus europaeus (83%), Angiostrongylus vasorum, Crenosoma vulpis and Eucoleus aerophilus in Vulpes vulpes (3, 3.46 and 0.50%, respectively), Crenosoma taiga in Putorius putorius (100%) and Crenosoma sp. in Meles meles (25%). In Crocidura russula nematode larvae were found (3.3%). Mus musculus, Rattus norvegicus, Rattus rattus, Talpa caeca, Sorex araneus, Genetta genetta and Canis lupus were not parasitized by lung or heart parasites.

  19. Food-chain analysis (lead and cadmium) in free-living animal populations in the Saar area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mueller, P.

    1983-02-01

    The populations and substrates involved in food webs are integrators of the burdening of areas and ecosystems. After several years of experiences my study group started continuous populations and residue analyses in Saarland (Aromatics, Heavy metals). It was shown that with the knowledge of the ecological variables, the analyses of soil types, of earth-worms (Lumbricidae), ground beetles (Carabidae), blackbirds (Turdus meruala), honey-bees (Apis mellifica), goshawks (Accipiter gentilis) and foxes (Vulpes vulpes) carried out at the same site yielded expecially useful area-related results. Heavy metal concentration (Pb, Cd) in leaves of Populus nigra, Physa acuta, Erprobdella octoculata, Asellus aquaticus, earthworms, Carabids, goshawks and foxes are presented.

  20. Fear or food ? abundance of red fox in relation to occurrence of lynx and wolf

    OpenAIRE

    Wikenros, Camilla; Aronsson, Malin; Liberg, Olof; Jarnemo, Anders; Hansson, Jessica; Wallgren, M?rtha; Sand, H?kan; Bergstr?m, Roger

    2017-01-01

    Apex predators may affect mesopredators through intraguild predation and/or supply of carrion from their prey, causing a trade-off between avoidance and attractiveness. We used wildlife triangle snow-tracking data to investigate the abundance of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in relation to lynx (Lynx lynx) and wolf (Canis lupus) occurrence as well as land composition and vole (Microtus spp.)?density. Data from the Swedish wolf-monitoring system and VHF/GPS-collared wolves were used to study the eff...

  1. Development of a Single-Sampling Noninvasive Hair Snare

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bremner-Harrison, Samantha; Harrison, Stephen W. R.; Cypher, Brian L.

    2006-01-01

    Noninvasive hair and fecal DNA sampling provides a means of collecting information on elusive species, while causing little or no disturbance. However, current methods of hair collection do not preclude multiple sampling, thus risking sample contamination. We developed a hair snare that prevents...... multiple sampling, is cost-effective, easy to construct, and safe for target and nontarget species. Our initial field tests on endangered San Joaquin kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis mutica) and swift foxes (Vulpes velox) suggest that this hair snare may be effective in collecting uncontaminated samples for DNA...

  2. Breeding in a den of thieves : Pros and cons of nesting close to egg predators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Fouw, Jimmy; Bom, Roeland A.; Klaassen, Raymond H. G.; Muskens, Gerard J. D. M.; de Vries, Peter P.; Popov, Igor Yu.; Kokorev, Yakov I.; Ebbinge, Barwolt S.; Nolet, Bart A.

    Breeding success of many Arctic-breeding bird populations varies with lemming cycles due to prey switching behavior of generalist predators. Several bird species breed on islands to escape from generalist predators like Arctic fox Vulpes lagopus, but little is known about how these species interact.

  3. Breeding in a den of thieves: pros and cons of nesting close to egg predators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Fouw, J; Bom, R.A.; Klaassen, R.H.G.; Müskens, G.J. D. M.; de Vries, P.P.; Popov, I.Y.; Kokorev, Y.I.; Ebbinge, B.S.; Nolet, B.A.

    2016-01-01

    Breeding success of many Arctic-breedingbird populations varies with lemming cycles dueto prey switching behavior of generalist predators. Several bird species breed on islands to escape fromgeneralist predators like Arctic fox Vulpes lagopus, but little is known about how these species interact.We

  4. Swift fox survey along Heartland Expressway Corridor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-01

    The swift fox (Vulpes velox) is a small canid classified as endangered within the : state of Nebraska. Future construction of the Heartland Expressway Corridor (HEC), a : 300 km road expansion project in the panhandle of the state, may impact the res...

  5. Energy expenditure and water flux of Ruppell's foxes in Saudi Arabia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Williams, J.B.; Lenain, D; Ostrowski, S; Tieleman, B.I.; Seddon, P

    2002-01-01

    Scattered populations of Ruppell's foxes (Vulpes rueppelli) occur across the deserts of northern Africa and Arabia. Little is known about the biology of these canids, especially the physiological mechanisms that contribute to their ability to live in such harsh environments. For individuals from

  6. Uudised : Eesti muusikud Saksamaal. Räätsa teose esiettekanne Saksamaal. Sumera seljatas Sikorski / Merike Utt

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Utt, Merike

    2001-01-01

    U. Vulp, H.-D. Varema ja H. Mätlik esinesid kontsertidega saksa linnades. 18. mail kõlab Saksamaal Baden-Badenis J. Räätsa Kontsert flöödile, kitarrile ja orkestrile. Saksa ülemkohtu positiivsest otsusest L. Sumera kasuks Sumera ja H. Sikorski vahelises kohtuasjas autoriõiguse küsimuses

  7. Breeding in a den of thieves

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fouw, de Jimmy; Bom, Roeland A.; Klaassen, Raymond H.G.; Müskens, Gerard J.D.M.; Vries, de Peter P.; Popov, Igor Yu; Kokorev, Yakov I.; Ebbinge, Bart; Nolet, Bart A.

    2016-01-01

    Breeding success of many Arctic-breeding bird populations varies with lemming cycles due to prey switching behavior of generalist predators. Several bird species breed on islands to escape from generalist predators like Arctic fox Vulpes lagopus, but little is known about how these species

  8. Breeding in a den of thieves: pros and cons of nesting close to egg predators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Fouw, J.; Bom, R.A.; Klaassen, R.H.G.; Müskens, G.J.D.M.; de Vries, P.P.; Popov, I.Yu.; Kokorev, Y.I.; Ebbinge, B.S.; Nolet, B.A.

    Breeding success of many Arctic-breeding bird populations varies with lemming cycles due to prey switching behavior of generalist predators. Several bird species breed on islands to escape from generalist predators like Arctic fox Vulpes lagopus, but little is known about how these species interact.

  9. Breeding in a den of thieves: pros and cons of nesting close to egg predators.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Fouw, J.; Bom, R. A.; Klaassen, R.; Müskens, G.J.D.M.; De Vries, P.P.; Popov, I.Y.; Kokorev, Y.I.; Ebbinge, B.S.; Nolet, B.A.

    2016-01-01

    Breeding success of many Arctic-breeding bird populations varies with lemming cycles due to prey switching behavior of generalist predators. Several bird species breed on islands to escape from generalist predators like Arctic fox Vulpes lagopus, but little is known about how these species interact.

  10. 77 FR 57043 - Regulations Under the Fur Products Labeling Act

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-17

    ... kept for farming purposes. The Convention aims to protect animals against any unnecessary suffering or... on purportedly superior European fur-farming practices, which can change and which the Commission... Vulpes lagopus. Goat Artiodactyla Bovidae Capra hircus. Jaguar ......do Felidae Panthera onca. Jaguarundi...

  11. Space use and territoriality in swift foxes (Vulpes velox) in northeastern Colorado

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lebsock, Amariah A.; Burdett, Christopher L.; Darden, Safi K.

    2012-01-01

    Space use is a fundamental characteristic that informs our knowledge of social relationships and the degree to which individuals are territorial. Until recently, relatively little was known about the spatial ecology and social organization of swift foxes (Vulpes velox (Say, 1823)). We investigated...

  12. Molecular assessment of Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) infections in wild canids and rodents from north Africa, with implications for transmission dynamics across taxonomic groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maia, João P; Alvares, Francisco; Boratyński, Zbyszek; Brito, José C; Leite, João V; Harris, D James

    2014-10-01

    Parasites play a major role in ecosystems, and understanding of host-parasite interactions is important for predicting parasite transmission dynamics and epidemiology. However, there is still a lack of knowledge about the distribution, diversity, and impact of parasites in wildlife, especially from remote areas. Hepatozoon is a genus of apicomplexan parasites that is transmitted by ingestion of infected arthropod vectors. However, alternative modes of transmission have been identified such as trophic transmission. Using the 18S rRNA gene as a marker, we provide an assessment of Hepatozoon prevalence in six wild canid and two rodent species collected between 2003 and 2012 from remote areas in North Africa. By combining this with other predator-prey systems in a phylogenetic framework, we investigate Hepatozoon transmission dynamics in distinct host taxa. Prevalence was high overall among host species (African jerboa Jaculus jaculus [17/47, 36%], greater Egyptian jerboa Jaculus orientalis [5/7, 71%], side-striped jackal Canis adustus [1/2, 50%], golden jackal Canis aureus [6/32, 18%], pale fox Vulpes pallida [14/28, 50%], Rüppell's fox Vulpes rueppellii [6/11, 55%], red fox Vulpes vulpes [8/16, 50%], and fennec fox Vulpes zerda [7/11, 42%]). Phylogenetic analysis showed further evidence of occasional transmission of Hepatozoon lineages from prey to canid predators, which seems to occur less frequently than in other predator-prey systems such as between snakes and lizards. Due to the complex nature of the Hepatozoon lifecycle (heteroxenous and vector-borne), future studies on these wild host species need to clarify the dynamics of alternative modes of Hepatozoon transmission and identify reservoir and definitive hosts in natural populations. We also detected putative Babesia spp. (Apicomplexa: Piroplasmida) infections in two canid species from this region, V. pallida (1/28) and V. zerda (1/11).

  13. Associations between biosecurity and outbreaks of canine distemper on Danish mink farms in 2012-2013

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregers-Jensen, Louise; Agger, Jens Frederik; Hammer, Anne Sofie Vedsted

    2015-01-01

    During 8 months from July 2012 to February 2013, a major outbreak of canine distemper involving 64 mink farms occurred on the Danish peninsula of Jutland. The canine distemper outbreak was associated with exposure of farmed mink to infected wild carnivores and could represent a deficit...... distemper from July 2012 to February 2013. The control group included 54 farms without an outbreak of canine distemper in 2012 or 2013, selected as the closest geographical neighbour to a case farm. The results showed that significantly more control than case farms had vaccinated their mink against canine...... distemper virus. Mortality was only assessed on the case farms, and there was a non-significantly lower mortality on vaccinated farms than on the non-vaccinated farms. Furthermore, the proportion of farms with observations of wild red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) inside the farm enclosures were larger for case...

  14. Molecular evolution of the leptin exon 3 in some species of the family Canidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Switonski Marek

    2003-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The structure of the leptin gene seems to be well conserved. The polymorphism of this gene in four species belonging to the Canidae family (the dog (Canis familiaris – 16 different breeds, the Chinese racoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides procyonoides, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes and the arctic fox (Alopex lagopus were studied with the use of single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP, restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP and DNA sequencing techniques. For exon 2, all species presented the same SSCP pattern, while in exon 3 some differences were found. DNA sequencing of exon 3 revealed the presence of six nucleotide substitutions, differentiating the studied species. Three of them cause amino acid substitutions as well. For all dog breeds studied, SSCP patterns were identical.

  15. First record of Giardia assemblage D infection in farmed raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Piotr Solarczyk

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The presence of Giardia genotypes was investigated in 18 raccoon dogs ( Nyctereutes procyonoides and 80 red foxes ( Vulpes vulpes on one farm. To demonstrate Giardia cysts, fresh and trichrome stained smears were microscopically screened. Two molecular markers were used for Giardia genotyping: a fragment of the beta-giardin gene and a fragment of the glutamate dehydrogenase gene. All faecal samples obtained from red foxes were negative. Giardia cysts were identified only in 2 of the 18 raccoon dogs. The result of genotyping and phylogenetic analysis showed that the G. duodenalis from both raccoon dogs belonged to the D assemblage. This finding of a new animal reservoir of G. duodenalis canids-specific genotypes is important in order to eliminate the risk of infecting other animals bred for fur. Further molecular analyses of Giardia isolates in raccoon dogs are required. The present study represents the first contribution to knowledge of G. duodenalis genotypes in raccoon dogs.

  16. "Reversed" intraguild predation: red fox cubs killed by pine marten.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brzeziński, Marcin; Rodak, Lukasz; Zalewski, Andrzej

    2014-01-01

    Camera traps deployed at a badger Meles meles set in mixed pine forest in north-eastern Poland recorded interspecific killing of red fox Vulpes vulpes cubs by pine marten Martes martes . The vixen and her cubs settled in the set at the beginning of May 2013, and it was abandoned by the badgers shortly afterwards. Five fox cubs were recorded playing in front of the den each night. Ten days after the first recording of the foxes, a pine marten was filmed at the set; it arrived in the morning, made a reconnaissance and returned at night when the vixen was away from the set. The pine marten entered the den several times and killed at least two fox cubs. It was active at the set for about 2 h. This observation proves that red foxes are not completely safe from predation by smaller carnivores, even those considered to be subordinate species in interspecific competition.

  17. Animal and plant remains in a tomb in test-pit 1/05, outside the fortified imperial palace Felix Romuliana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dimitrijević Vesna

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available During the excavations of a tomb located outside the defence walls of the imperial palace, Felix Romuliana, animal and plant remains were collected the analysis of which is the subject of the present study. The faunal remains include the bones and teeth of domestic animals - mule (Equus caballus x Equus asinus, domestic ox (Bos taurus, sheep (Ovis aries, sheep or goat (Ovis/Capra, pig (Sus domesticus and dog (Canis familiaris, a few remains of wild animals - red deer (Cervus elaphus and fox (Vulpes vulpes, and bone of a bird. Until now, no remains of mule have been discovered on sites originating from the classical period at the territory of Serbia. As for plant remains, pieces of carbonized oak wood (Quercus and maple wood (Acer were found, as well as a carbonized seed of a cultivated grapevine (Vitis vinifera vinifera and a tiny fruit of goosegrass (Galium aparine.

  18. Eye blinking in an avian species is associated with gaze shifts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yorzinski, Jessica L

    2016-08-30

    Even when animals are actively monitoring their environment, they lose access to visual information whenever they blink. They can strategically time their blinks to minimize information loss and improve visual functioning but we have little understanding of how this process operates in birds. This study therefore examined blinking in freely-moving peacocks (Pavo cristatus) to determine the relationship between their blinks, gaze shifts, and context. Peacocks wearing a telemetric eye-tracker were exposed to a taxidermy predator (Vulpes vulpes) and their blinks and gaze shifts were recorded. Peacocks blinked during the majority of their gaze shifts, especially when gaze shifts were large, thereby timing their blinks to coincide with periods when visual information is already suppressed. They inhibited their blinks the most when they exhibited high rates of gaze shifts and were thus highly alert. Alternative hypotheses explaining the link between blinks and gaze shifts are discussed.

  19. Mårhundens (Nyctereutes procyonoides) føde og fødeoverlap med hjemmehørende rovdyr i Danmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mikkelsen, Dorthe Malene Götz; Nørgaard, Louise Solveig; Jensen, Trine Hammer

    2016-01-01

    The raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) is an omnivorous carnivore from East Asia, which has been introduced in Europe. It has recently established a free-ranging population in Denmark. The dietary habits of this non-native species were examined and compared to the diet of native badger (Meles...... meles) and red fox (Vulpes vulpes). The raccoon dog diet was determined from undigested remains in the stomach. The examined raccoon dogs primarily originated from road kills, hunting and culling. Individuals that were caught in baited traps were excluded from the analysis. A total of 244 free......-ranging raccoon dogs were collected in 2008-2014. Only 129 of these were included in the analysis based on the cause of death. The diet of raccoon dogs comprised small mammals (56% frequency of occurrence (FO) and carcasses/unidentified materials (57% FO); invertebrates (86% FO); birds (46% FO); fruits...

  20. Increase in number of helminth species from Dutch red foxes over a 35-year period.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franssen, Frits; Nijsse, Rolf; Mulder, Jaap; Cremers, Herman; Dam, Cecile; Takumi, Katsuhisa; van der Giessen, Joke

    2014-04-03

    The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is host to a community of zoonotic and other helminth species. Tracking their community structure and dynamics over decades is one way to monitor the long term risk of parasitic infectious diseases relevant to public and veterinary health. We identified 17 helminth species from 136 foxes by mucosal scraping, centrifugal sedimentation/flotation and the washing and sieving technique. We applied rarefaction analysis to our samples and compared the resulting curve to the helminth community reported in literature 35 years ago. Fox helminth species significantly increased in number in the last 35 years (p-value <0.025). Toxascaris leonina, Mesocestoides litteratus, Trichuris vulpis and Angiostrongylus vasorum are four new veterinary-relevant species. The zoonotic fox tapeworm (E. multilocularis) was found outside the previously described endemic regions in the Netherlands. Helminth fauna in Dutch red foxes increased in biodiversity over the last three decades.

  1. Presence of large and medium-sized mammals in a burned pine forest in southwestern Turkey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anil Soyumert

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Riassunto
    Presenza di grandi e medi mammiferi in pinete incendiate della Turchia sud-occidentale
    Nel periodo Novembre 2005-Agosto 2006, è stata verificata, tramite trappole fotografiche, la presenza di mammiferi di grandi e medie dimensioni in foreste di Pinus brutia integre e incendiate della Turchia sud-occidentale. Sono state ottenute fotografie di tre specie, cinghiale (Sus scrofa, volpe (Vulpes vulpes e faina (Martes foina. Le prime due sono state rinvenute in entrambe le aree, mentre la faina è stata accertata solo in boschi incendiati. I risultati del presente studio suggeriscono che gli stadi successionali intermedi successivi ai roghi possono essere ricolonizzati dalle comunità di mammiferi.

    doi:10.4404/hystrix-21.1-4488

  2. Theobromine intoxication in a red fox and a European badger in Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansson, D S; Galgan, V; Schubert, B; Segerstad, C H

    2001-04-01

    A red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and a European badger (Meles meles) were found dead on a golf-course in October 1997 near Stockholm (Sweden). At necropsy, both animals were obese and the main finding was acute circulatory collapse. Theobromine intoxication was suspected as chocolate waste was available at a nearby farm and no other cause of death could be detected. Gastric contents and samples of liver from both animals were analyzed by reversed-phase high pressure liquid chromatography for the presence of methylxanthines. Theobromine and caffeine were detected in gastric contents and theobromine was identified in the liver samples from both animals. This appears to be the first report of theobromine intoxication in the red fox and the European badger.

  3. New data in France on the trematode Alaria alata (Goeze, 1792) obtained during Trichinella inspections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portier, J.; Jouet, D.; Ferté, H.; Gibout, O.; Heckmann, A.; Boireau, P.; Vallée, I.

    2011-01-01

    The trematode Alaria alata is a cosmopolite parasite found in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), the main definitive host in Europe. In contrast only few data are reported in wild boars (Sus scrofa), a paratenic host. The aim of this paper is to describe the importance and distribution of Alaria alata mesocercariae in wild boars, information is given by findings of these larvae during Trichinella mandatory meat inspection on wild boars’ carcasses aimed for human consumption. More than a hundred cases of mesocercariae positive animals are found every year in the East of France. First investigations on the parasite’s resistance to deep-freezing in meat are presented in this work. PMID:21894269

  4. Predators control post-fledging mortality in tawny owls, Strix aluco

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sunde, Peter

    2005-01-01

    , primarily due to predation from raptors and mammals (predominantly foxes Vulpes vulpes). Predation by mammals occurred within the first few days after fledging, with young leaving the nest at an early age being at particularly high risk. Young that had received extra food as nestlings were also at higher...... risk of being preyed upon by mammals, possibly because they were easier to locate on their smell. Total mortality risk (control broods) increased with fledging date from 14% in April to >58% in June due to an increasing raptor predation risk. Individual attributes such as sex, condition......, immunocompetence or prevalence of blood parasites did not predict total or cause-specific mortality risk. Survival during the post-fledging dependency period was therefore primarily a function of variation in predation pressures, particularly from raptors. Increasing raptor predation of late broods appears...

  5. Genetic signatures of adaptation revealed from transcriptome sequencing of Arctic and red foxes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Vikas; Kutschera, Verena E; Nilsson, Maria A; Janke, Axel

    2015-08-07

    The genus Vulpes (true foxes) comprises numerous species that inhabit a wide range of habitats and climatic conditions, including one species, the Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) which is adapted to the arctic region. A close relative to the Arctic fox, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), occurs in subarctic to subtropical habitats. To study the genetic basis of their adaptations to different environments, transcriptome sequences from two Arctic foxes and one red fox individual were generated and analyzed for signatures of positive selection. In addition, the data allowed for a phylogenetic analysis and divergence time estimate between the two fox species. The de novo assembly of reads resulted in more than 160,000 contigs/transcripts per individual. Approximately 17,000 homologous genes were identified using human and the non-redundant databases. Positive selection analyses revealed several genes involved in various metabolic and molecular processes such as energy metabolism, cardiac gene regulation, apoptosis and blood coagulation to be under positive selection in foxes. Branch site tests identified four genes to be under positive selection in the Arctic fox transcriptome, two of which are fat metabolism genes. In the red fox transcriptome eight genes are under positive selection, including molecular process genes, notably genes involved in ATP metabolism. Analysis of the three transcriptomes and five Sanger re-sequenced genes in additional individuals identified a lower genetic variability within Arctic foxes compared to red foxes, which is consistent with distribution range differences and demographic responses to past climatic fluctuations. A phylogenomic analysis estimated that the Arctic and red fox lineages diverged about three million years ago. Transcriptome data are an economic way to generate genomic resources for evolutionary studies. Despite not representing an entire genome, this transcriptome analysis identified numerous genes that are relevant to arctic

  6. Tonawanda Creek, Genesee County, New York, Regional Flood Control. Final Environmental Impact Statement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1981-11-01

    Long-tail Weasel : Mustela frenata Least Weasel : Mustela rixosa Mink : Mustela vison Eastern Skunk : Mephitis mephitis Red Fox : Vulpes fulva Gray Fo...environments and listed: (a) thickening of gill lamellae, (b) excessive mucous secretion, (c) abrasion of branchial epithelium, and (d) respiratory distress...Ranges Uhich May Include the Batavia Reservoir Compound Site Opossum : Didelphis marsupialis Raccoon : Procyon lotor Short-tail Weasel : Mustela erminea

  7. Environmental Impact Analysis Process. Draft Environmental Impact Statement Proposed Alaskan Radar System Over-the-Horizon Backscatter Radar Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    1986-08-01

    Mustela vison wolverine Gulo Kulo river otter Lutra canadensis lynx Lynx canadensis moose Alces alces caribou Rangifer tarandus Dall’s sheep Ovic dalli...tissue respiratory chain function at a power density of 5 mW/cm2 . It is unlikely that such effects would be detectable at the power densities at ground...Vulves vulpes black bear Ursus americanus grizzly bear Ursus arctos marten Martes americana ermine Mustela erminea least weasel Mustela nivalis mink

  8. Etologická studie zvířat chovaných společně v nočním pavilonu v zoo Olomouc

    OpenAIRE

    GRÖGEROVÁ, Simona

    2013-01-01

    Species Red-rumped Agouti (Dasyprocta leporina), Fennec Fox (Vulpes zerda), Rodrigues Flying Fox (Pteropus rodricensis) Tawny Frogmouth (Podargus strigoides) Bolivian Night Monkey (Aotus azarae ssp. boliviensis) and Common Scops-owl (Otus scops) are breed together in reversed light/dark cycle exhibit in zoo Olomouc. Most of these species have similar environmental living conditions in the wild, but they are zoogeographically heterogeneous. The purpose of this study was to assess success of th...

  9. Sarcoptic mange in Swedish wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mörner, T

    1992-12-01

    Mange caused by Sarcoptes scabiei var. vulpes appeared among red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Scandinavia (south-west Finland) for the first time in this century in 1967. The disease was most probably introduced by foxes crossing the Gulf of Finland from Estonia. The mange epizootic spread northwards through Finland and reached Sweden in late 1975, when mangy foxes appeared in the northern part of the country. In 1984, mange was observed in most parts of Sweden. The disease was observed to spread rapidly in boreal areas, whereas it spread more slowly in agricultural areas. Mortality due to mange was very high. The duration of the disease before death due to emaciation has been shown experimentally to be over 90 days. An outbreak of fox mange among Arctic foxes (Alopex lagopus) occurred in 1986. The local population of Arctic foxes was caught and successfully treated. The following year, treated foxes were caught again and no signs of disease were found. Sporadic cases of fox mange have also been diagnosed in lynx (Lynx lynx), pine marten (Martes martes) and domestic dogs. Single cases have been observed in other species: wolf (Canis lupus), mountain hare (Lepus timidus), domestic cat and horse. No cases of sarcoptic mange have been recorded in the badger (Meles meles). At present, although fox mange occurs as an epizootic in local populations, the number of foxes has increased again in many parts of Sweden.

  10. Satellite DNA Sequences in Canidae and Their Chromosome Distribution in Dog and Red Fox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vozdova, Miluse; Kubickova, Svatava; Cernohorska, Halina; Fröhlich, Jan; Rubes, Jiri

    2016-01-01

    Satellite DNA is a characteristic component of mammalian centromeric heterochromatin, and a comparative analysis of its evolutionary dynamics can be used for phylogenetic studies. We analysed satellite and satellite-like DNA sequences available in NCBI for 4 species of the family Canidae (red fox, Vulpes vulpes, VVU; domestic dog, Canis familiaris, CFA; arctic fox, Vulpes lagopus, VLA; raccoon dog, Nyctereutes procyonoides procyonoides, NPR) by comparative sequence analysis, which revealed 86-90% intraspecies and 76-79% interspecies similarity. Comparative fluorescence in situ hybridisation in the red fox and dog showed signals of the red fox satellite probe in canine and vulpine autosomal centromeres, on VVUY, B chromosomes, and in the distal parts of VVU9q and VVU10p which were shown to contain nucleolus organiser regions. The CFA satellite probe stained autosomal centromeres only in the dog. The CFA satellite-like DNA did not show any significant sequence similarity with the satellite DNA of any species analysed and was localised to the centromeres of 9 canine chromosome pairs. No significant heterochromatin block was detected on the B chromosomes of the red fox. Our results show extensive heterogeneity of satellite sequences among Canidae and prove close evolutionary relationships between the red and arctic fox. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  11. A client-server software for the identification of groundwater vulnerability to pesticides at regional level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Guardo, Andrea; Finizio, Antonio

    2015-10-15

    The groundwater VULnerability to PESticide software system (VULPES) is a user-friendly, GIS-based and client-server software developed to identify vulnerable areas to pesticides at regional level making use of pesticide fate models. It is a Decision Support System aimed to assist the public policy makers to investigate areas sensitive to specific substances and to propose limitations of use or mitigation measures. VULPES identify the so-called Uniform Geographical Unit (UGU) which are areas characterised by the same agro-environmental conditions. In each UGU it applies the PELMO model obtaining the 80th percentile of the substance concentration at 1 metre depth; then VULPES creates a vulnerability map in shapefile format which classifies the outputs comparing them with the lower threshold set to the legal limit concentration in groundwater (0.1 μg/l). This paper describes the software structure in details and a case study with the application of the terbuthylazine herbicide on the Lombardy region territory. Three zones with different degrees of vulnerabilities has been identified and described. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. A survey of Babesia spp. and Hepatozoon spp. in wild canids in Israel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margalit Levi, Maayan; Nachum-Biala, Yaarit; King, Roni; Baneth, Gad

    2018-03-20

    Babesia spp. and Hepatozoon spp. are apicomplexan parasites that infect a variety of animals, including canids. Their life-cycle includes an invertebrate hematophagous vector as a definitive host and vertebrates as intermediate hosts. The aims of this study were to investigate the prevalence and risk factors for Babesia spp. and Hepatozoon spp. infections in wild golden jackals (Canis aureus) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Israel and to compare spleen with blood sample polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the detection of infection. Blood and spleen samples from 109 golden jackals and 21 red foxes were tested by PCR for the detection of Babesia spp. and Hepatozoon spp. using primers for the 18S ribosomal (r) RNA gene. Hepatozoon canis was detected in 50/109 (46%) of the jackals and 9/21 (43%) of the foxes. "Babesia vulpes" (the Babesia microti-like piroplasm) was detected in 4/21 (19%) of the foxes and in none of the jackals. A previously unknown genotype termed Babesia sp. MML related to Babesia lengau (96-97% identity) was detected in 1/109 (1%) of the jackals and 4/21 (19%) of the foxes. Further characterization of this genotype carried out by PCR of the rRNA internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) indicated that it had only 87% identity with the B. lengau ITS2. Sex (male or female), age (juvenile or adult) and geographic zone (North, Central or South Israel) were not found to be significant risk factors for these protozoan infections. The prevalence of "B. vulpes" and Babesia sp. MML infections was significantly higher in foxes compared to jackals (χ 2  = 15.65, df = 1, P < 0.005), while there was no statistically significant difference in the rate of H. canis infection between these two canid species. A fair agreement beyond chance between identification in the blood and spleen of H. canis was found in 21 animals from which both blood and spleen samples were available (k = 0.33). This study describes a high prevalence of H. canis infection in

  13. Food habits of the stone marten (Martes foina in the upper Aveto Valley (Northern Apennines, Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriano Martinoli

    1995-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The diet of the stone marten (Martes foina was studied analysing 63 faeces collected from February 1990 to December 1991. The results were expressed as relative percentage of frequency (Fr% and as percentage of mean bulk (Vm%. Mammals, mainly rodents, were the staple in the diet (annual Vm% = 62.9 and reached a maximum peak in winter (Vm% = 79.4. Vegetables were mostly represented by Rosaceae fruits (annual Vm% = 22.3 and were consumed during all year round. Insects, mainly Coleoptera and Orthoptera, were fairly frequently eaten, although their volume was not remarkable (annual Vm% = 4.1. Birds and garbage were scarcely used. The trophic niche breadth of the stone marten, evaluated using the Levin's index (B, varied from 2.49 in winter to 4.8 in summer. In the same study area the diet of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes was studied. The niche overlap between this canid and the stone marten was not extensive (Op = 0.52; Os = 0.51. Riassunto Indagine sul comportamento trofico della faina (Martes foina in alta Val d'Aveto (Appennino Ligure-Emiliano - La dieta della Faina (Martes foina è stata studiata analizzando 63 feci raccolte dal febbraio 1990 al dicembre 1991. I dati ottenuti, espressi come frequenza relativa percentuale (Fr% e come volume medio percentuale (Vm%, evidenziano che i Mammiferi, in particolare i Roditori, sono la componente alimentare principale (Vm% annuale = 62,9, con maggior consumo durante il periodo invernale (Vm% = 79,4. I vegetali, rappresentati per la maggior parte dai frutti delle Rosacee (Vm% annuale = 22,3, sono la seconda categoria trofica per importanza e compaiono per tutto l'arco dell'anno. Gli Insetti, quasi esclusivamente Coleotteri ed Ortotteri, presentano una discreta percentuale di utilizzo (Fr% annuale = 21,2 pur non avendo un'incidenza volumetricamente importante (Vm% annuale = 4,1. Gli Uccelli costituiscono una fonte

  14. The last "pest". The fox in the Italian law and in the actual hunting management / L'ultimo "nocivo". La Volpe nella legislazione italiana e nella pratica venatoria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabio Cassola

    1991-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In the general mentality as well as in the actual hunting management of the Italian territory, the fox Vulpes vulpes has largely replaced the wolf Canis lupus as the target of abnormal and injustified destructive efforts. By exagerating its predatory pressure on domestic and game animals, and more recently as an asserted anti-rabies measure, the control of fox populations still continue to be heady practised in most regions, even where (such as in Tuscany, central Italy the rabies desease did not arrive. Some official data are given about foxes killed and rewards paid in several areas in the Eighties, for a total amount of several tens of thousands foxes (nearly 2,000 in the Siena province alone yearly and some milliards lira. The absurdity of such management policy and the damage indirectly caused to the agriculture are emphasized, as well as the need of stopping at last any persecution of predatory or so-called "pest" animals. Riassunto Nella mentalità popolare e nella quotidiana gestione venatoria del territorio, la Volpe Vulpes vulpes sembra aver ormai sostituito il Lupo Canis lupus come oggetto catalizzatore di abnormi e ingiustificati sforzi distruttivi. Esagerandone l'entità della predazione su animali domestici e selvatici, e più recentemente con il pretesto di diradarne le popolazioni come asserita misura di profilassi antirabbica, si continua assurdamente in molte regioni italiane a condurre operazioni di "controllo" della Volpe che perpetuano nei fatti l'anti-ecologica e ormai inaccettabile "lotta ai nocivi". Vengono in particolare qui riferiti alcuni dati ufficiali, provenienti anche da regioni, come la Toscana, mai toccate dall'epidemia di rabbia silvestre degli anni 1977-1986, relativi agli abbattimenti di volpi e ai premi pagati nel corso dell'ultimo decennio, per un totale di parecchie decine di migliaia di volpi uccise (quasi 2000 ogni anno nella

  15. A phylogenetic analysis of basal metabolism, total evaporative water loss, and life-history among foxes from desert and mesic regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, J B; Muñoz-Garcia, A; Ostrowski, S; Tieleman, B I

    2004-01-01

    We measured basal metabolic rate (BMR) and total evaporative water loss (TEWL) of species of foxes that exist on the Arabian Peninsula, Blanford's fox (Vulpes cana) and two subspecies of Red fox (Vulpes vulpes). Combining these data with that on other canids from the literature, we searched for specialization of physiological traits among desert foxes using both conventional least squares regression and regressions based on phylogenetic independent contrasts. Further, we explored the consequences of reduced body size of foxes on life history parameters such as litter size and neonate mass. For Blanford's foxes, Red foxes from the central desert of Arabia, and Red foxes from the more mesic Asir mountains, body mass averaged 1,285 +/- 52 g, 1,967 +/- 289 g, and 3,060 +/- 482 g, respectively, whereas mean BMR, during summer, was 304.5 +/- 32.3 kJ/day, 418.0 +/- 32.4 kJ/day, and 724.1 +/- 120.2 kJ/day (+/- SD). An analysis of covariance with body mass as a covariate showed no statistical differences in BMR among foxes. Analysis of covariance indicated that Red fox from the Asir mountains had a higher TEWL than Red foxes from central Arabia or than Blanford's foxes also from the mountains. Comparisons of all species of desert and mesic foxes showed no significant differences in BMR, nor did desert foxes have a significantly lower BMR than other carnivores. TEWL of desert foxes was lower than other more mesic carnivores; deviations in TEWL ranged from -17.7% for the Fennec fox (Fennecus zerda) to -57.4% for the Kit fox (Vulpes velox). Although desert foxes have a BMR comparable to other more mesic species, it appears that desert foxes do have a smaller body mass, lowering overall energy requirements. We attribute this reduction in body size to the "resource limitation hypothesis" whereby natural selection favors smaller individuals in a resource-limited environment, especially during periods of severe food shortage. However, until common garden experiments are performed

  16. Disappearance rate of praziquantel-containing bait around villages and small towns in southern Bavaria, Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janko, Christof; König, Andreas

    2011-04-01

    In recent years, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) has increasingly occupied urban areas in central Europe. Meanwhile, prevalence of infection in foxes with the small fox tapeworm (Echinococcus multilocularis) has increased, thereby increasing the human risk of infection with the parasite, which causes alveolar echinococcosis. Baiting strategies to counteract E. multilocularis have been implemented in cities and the open countryside, but there are few data on the situation in villages and small towns (edges for 7 days after distribution. Disappearance rates were 89.2% in villages, 88.8% in small towns, and 91.8% in settlement edges. More than 75% of the bait was consistently taken within the first three nights. There were no significant differences in disappearance rates between years or among seasons (Cox proportional hazard model). The survival time of the bait in small towns (P=0.021) and villages (P=0.026) depended on the zone (zone 1, first row of houses bordering on open countryside; zone 2, second to fourth rows, zone 3; beyond the fifth row) in which bait was distributed. In villages, the probability of bait being eaten in zone 1 was 119% higher than it was in zone 3 (P=0.007). In small towns, the probability was 60% higher (P=0.006).

  17. Rodent foraging is affected by indirect, but not by direct, cues of predation risk.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Orrock, John, L.; Danielson, Brent, J.; Brinkerhoff, R., Jory

    2004-01-01

    Behavioral Ecology Vol. 15 No. 3: 433 - 437 We used foraging trays to determine whether old field mice, Peromyscus polionotus , altered foraging in response to direct cues of predation risk (urine of native and nonnative predators) and indirect cues of predation risk (foraging microhabitat, precipitation, and moon illumination). The proportion of seeds remaining in each tray (a measure of the giving-up density [GUD]) was used to measure risk perceived by mice. Mice did not alter their GUD when presented with cues of native predators (bobcats, Lynx r ufus , and red foxes, Vulpes vulpes), recently introduced predators (coyotes, Canis latrans ), nonnative predators (ocelots, Leopardus pardalis ), a native herbivore (white-tailed deer, Odocoileus virginianus), or a water control. Rather, GUD was related to microhabitat: rodents removed more seeds from foraging trays sheltered beneath vegetative cover compared with exposed trays outside of cover. Rodents also removed more seeds during nights with precipitation and when moon illumination was low. Our results suggest that P. polionotus used indirect cues rather than direct cues to assess risk of vertebrate predation. Indirect cues may be more reliable than are direct scent cues for estimating risk from multiple vertebrate predators that present the most risk in open environments.

  18. Emergence of canine distemper virus strains with modified molecular signature and enhanced neuronal tropism leading to high mortality in wild carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Origgi, F C; Plattet, P; Sattler, U; Robert, N; Casaubon, J; Mavrot, F; Pewsner, M; Wu, N; Giovannini, S; Oevermann, A; Stoffel, M H; Gaschen, V; Segner, H; Ryser-Degiorgis, M-P

    2012-11-01

    An ongoing canine distemper epidemic was first detected in Switzerland in the spring of 2009. Compared to previous local canine distemper outbreaks, it was characterized by unusually high morbidity and mortality, rapid spread over the country, and susceptibility of several wild carnivore species. Here, the authors describe the associated pathologic changes and phylogenetic and biological features of a multiple highly virulent canine distemper virus (CDV) strain detected in and/or isolated from red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), Eurasian badgers (Meles meles), stone (Martes foina) and pine (Martes martes) martens, from a Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), and a domestic dog. The main lesions included interstitial to bronchointerstitial pneumonia and meningopolioencephalitis, whereas demyelination--the classic presentation of CDV infection--was observed in few cases only. In the brain lesions, viral inclusions were mainly in the nuclei of the neurons. Some significant differences in brain and lung lesions were observed between foxes and mustelids. Swiss CDV isolates shared together with a Hungarian CDV strain detected in 2004. In vitro analysis of the hemagglutinin protein from one of the Swiss CDV strains revealed functional and structural differences from that of the reference strain A75/17, with the Swiss strain showing increased surface expression and binding efficiency to the signaling lymphocyte activation molecule (SLAM). These features might be part of a novel molecular signature, which might have contributed to an increase in virus pathogenicity, partially explaining the high morbidity and mortality, the rapid spread, and the large host spectrum observed in this outbreak.

  19. Mortality factors and diseases in free-ranging Eurasian cranes (Grus grus) in Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanke, Jane; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Krone, Oliver

    2011-07-01

    Detailed postmortem examinations were performed on 167 free-ranging Eurasian Cranes (Grus grus) from Germany, collected between September 1998 and December 2008 to evaluate causes of death and diseases. The most common causes of mortality were traumatic injuries (n=105, 62.9%) from collisions with power lines (n=39, 23.4%) and wire fences (n=12, 7.2%). A group of 28 Eurasian Cranes (16.8%) died from organophosphate intoxication. Predation by White-tailed Sea Eagles (Haliaeetus albicilla) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) occurred in four cases (2.4%). Pathologic changes due to infectious diseases were associated with Aspergillus spp. (n=7, 4.2%), endoparasites (n=7, 4.2%), avian poxvirus (n=6, 3.6%), Mycobacterium spp. (n=2, 1.2%), and adenovirus infection (n=1, 0.6%). A severe Strigea spp. infection (n=1, 0.6%) and a leiomyosarcoma (n=1, 0.6%) were newly recognized diseases in Eurasian Cranes in this study.

  20. Trypanosoma cruzi strain TcIV infects raccoons from Illinois

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    Cailey Vandermark

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND The northern limits of Trypanosoma cruzi across the territory of the United States remain unknown. The known vectors Triatoma sanguisuga and T. lecticularia find their northernmost limits in Illinois; yet, earlier screenings of those insects did not reveal the presence of the pathogen, which has not been reported in vectors or reservoir hosts in this state. OBJECTIVES Five species of medium-sized mammals were screened for the presence of T. cruzi. METHODS Genomic DNA was isolated from heart, spleen and skeletal muscle of bobcats (Lynx rufus, n = 60, raccoons (Procyon lotor, n = 37, nine-banded armadillos (Dasypus novemcinctus, n = 5, Virginia opossums (Didelphis virginiana, n = 3, and a red fox (Vulpes vulpes. Infections were detected targeting DNA from the kinetoplast DNA minicircle (kDNA and satellite DNA (satDNA. The discrete typing unit (DTU was determined by amplifying two gene regions: the Spliced Leader Intergenic Region (SL, via a multiplex polymerase chain reaction, and the 24Sα ribosomal DNA via a heminested reaction. Resulting sequences were used to calculate their genetic distance against reference DTUs. FINDINGS 18.9% of raccoons were positive for strain TcIV; the rest of mammals tested negative. MAIN CONCLUSIONS These results confirm for the first time the presence of T. cruzi in wildlife from Illinois, suggesting that a sylvatic life cycle is likely to occur in the region. The analyses of sequences of SL suggest that amplicons resulting from a commonly used multiplex reaction may yield non-homologous fragments.

  1. Development of a Real-Time PCR for a Sensitive One-Step Coprodiagnosis Allowing both the Identification of Carnivore Feces and the Detection of Toxocara spp. and Echinococcus multilocularis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umhang, Gérald; Poulle, Marie-Lazarine; Millon, Laurence

    2016-01-01

    Studying the environmental occurrence of parasites of concern for humans and animals based on coprosamples is an expanding field of work in epidemiology and the ecology of health. Detecting and quantifying Toxocara spp. and Echinococcus multilocularis, two predominant zoonotic helminths circulating in European carnivores, in feces may help to better target measures for prevention. A rapid, sensitive, and one-step quantitative PCR (qPCR) allowing detection of E. multilocularis and Toxocara spp. was developed in the present study, combined with a host fecal test based on the identification of three carnivores (red fox, dog, and cat) involved in the life cycles of these parasites. A total of 68 coprosamples were collected from identified specimens from Vulpes vulpes, Canis lupus familiaris, Canis lupus, Felis silvestris catus, Meles meles, Martes foina, and Martes martes. With DNA coprosamples, real-time PCR was performed in duplex with a qPCR inhibitor control specifically designed for this study. All the coprosample host identifications were confirmed by qPCR combined with sequencing, and parasites were detected and confirmed (E. multilocularis in red foxes and Toxocara cati in cats; 16% of samples presented inhibition). By combining parasite detection and quantification, the host fecal test, and a new qPCR inhibitor control, we created a technique with a high sensitivity that may considerably improve environmental studies of pathogens. PMID:26969697

  2. Canine Visceral Leishmaniasis in Wild Canines (Fox, Jackal, and Wolf in Northeastern Iran Using Parasitological, Serological, and Molecular Methods

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    Mehdi Mohebali

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Although many studies had been conducted on various aspects of canine visceral leishmaniasis (CVL in domestic dogs in the endemic areas of Iran, investigations on CVL in wild canines are rare.Methods: This is a cross-sectional study was conducted from December 2012 to 2013 in northeast of Iran where human VL is endemic. Wild canines were trapped around the areas where human VL cases had been previously identified. Wild canines were collected and examined both clinically and serologically using direct agglutination test (DAT. Microscopically examinations were performed in all the seropositive wild canines for the presence of the amastigote form of Leishmania spp. Some Leishmania sp. which had been isolated from the spleens of wild canines, were examined analyzed by conventional PCR and sequencing techniques using α-tubulin and GAPDH genes.Results: Altogether, 84 wild canines including foxes (Vulpes vulpes, n=21, Jackals (Canis aureus, n=60 and wolves (Canis lupus, n=3 were collected. Four foxes and seven jackals showed anti-Leishmania infantum antibodies with titers of 1:320–1:20480 in DAT. Furthermore, one fox and one jackal were parasitologically (microscopy and culture positive and L. infantum was confirmed by sequence analysis.Conclusion: The present study showed that sylvatic cycle of L. infantum had been established in the studied endemic areas of VL in northeastern Iran.

  3. Invertebrates outcompete vertebrate facultative scavengers in simulated lynx kills in the Bavarian Forest National Park, Germany

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    Ray, R.–R.

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the role of scavengers in ecosystems is important for species conservation and wildlife management. We used road–killed animals, 15 in summer 2003 (June–August and nine in winter 2003/2004 (from November to January, to test the following hypotheses: (1 vertebrate scavengers such as raven (Corvus corax, red fox (Vulpes vulpes and wild boar (Sus scrofa consume a higher proportion of the carcasses than invertebrates; (2 the consumption rate is higher in winter than in summer due to the scarcity of other food resources; and (3 vertebrate scavengers are effective competitors of Eurasian lynx. We monitored 65 animals belonging to eight different mammal and bird species with camera traps. Surprisingly, Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx was the most important vertebrate scavenger. However, in both seasons, the consumption of vertebrate scavengers was of minor impact. In summer, the carcasses were completely consumed within 10 days, mostly by invertebrates. In winter, only 5% of the carcasses were consumed within 10 days and 16% within 15 days. We conclude that vertebrates in the Bavarian Forest National Park are not strong competitors for lynx.

  4. Garbage in the diet of carnivores in an agricultural area

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    Jankowiak Łukasz

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Human food waste is considered to be richer in carbohydrates, lipids and proteins than most natural food supplies; however, it is very well digested in scats. So, as an indication of this kind of food in the diet, we have used each indigestible, anthropogenic origin element found in faeces (e.g., glass, plastic, rubber, etc.. There are few studies discussing the importance of garbage in the diet of mammalian predators living in farmland; definitely, most focus on this issue in urban areas. We studied the contribution of garbage in the diet of raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides, red fox (Vulpes vulpes, marten (Martes sp., polecat (Mustela putorius, stoat (Mustela erminea, American mink (Neovison vison and Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra in the agricultural areas of western Poland in 2006-2010. In addition, we examined the spatial changes in the diet of red fox and polecat. The largest contribution of garbage was found in scats of raccoon dog (8.8%, red fox (4.8% and marten (4.3%. The diet of polecat, stoat and Eurasian otter contained 2.5%, 1.7% and 0.2% garbage items respectively. The most frequent item was plastic. Our analysis showed that garbage consumption by red fox and polecat was greater closer to human settlements. The results reveal a continuous gradient in the garbage consumption that corresponds with the degree of synanthropization of particular species.

  5. Trophic enrichment factors for blood serum in the European badger (Meles meles.

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    David J Kelly

    Full Text Available Ecologists undertaking stable isotopic analyses of animal diets require trophic enrichment factors (TEFs for the specific animal tissues that they are studying. Such basic data are available for a small number of species, so values from trophically or phylogenetically similar species are often substituted for missing values. By feeding a controlled diet to captive European badgers (Meles meles we determined TEFs for carbon and nitrogen in blood serum. TEFs for nitrogen and carbon in blood serum were +3.0 ± 0.4‰ and +0.4 ± 0.1‰ respectively. The TEFs for serum in badgers are notably different from those published for the red fox (Vulpes vulpes. There is currently no data for TEFs in the serum of other mustelid species. Our data show that species sharing similar niches (red fox do not provide adequate proxy values for TEFs of badgers. Our findings emphasise the importance of having species-specific data when undertaking trophic studies using stable isotope analysis.

  6. Inferring the distribution and demography of an invasive species from sighting data: the red fox incursion into Tasmania.

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    Peter Caley

    Full Text Available A recent study has inferred that the red fox (Vulpes vulpes is now widespread in Tasmania as of 2010, based on the extraction of fox DNA from predator scats. Heuristically, this inference appears at first glance to be at odds with the lack of recent confirmed discoveries of either road-killed foxes--the last of which occurred in 2006, or hunter killed foxes--the most recent in 2001. This paper demonstrates a method to codify this heuristic analysis and produce inferences consistent with assumptions and data. It does this by formalising the analysis in a transparent and repeatable manner to make inference on the past, present and future distribution of an invasive species. It utilizes Approximate Bayesian Computation to make inferences. Importantly, the method is able to inform management of invasive species within realistic time frames, and can be applied widely. We illustrate the technique using the Tasmanian fox data. Based on the pattern of carcass discoveries of foxes in Tasmania, we infer that the population of foxes in Tasmania is most likely extinct, or restricted in distribution and demographically weak as of 2013. It is possible, though unlikely, that that population is widespread and/or demographically robust. This inference is largely at odds with the inference from the predator scat survey data. Our results suggest the chances of successfully eradicating the introduced red fox population in Tasmania may be significantly higher than previously thought.

  7. Variation in the diet composition of a generalist predator, the red fox, in relation to season and density of main prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Arte, Graziella Lucia; Laaksonen, Toni; Norrdahl, Kai; Korpimäki, Erkki

    2007-05-01

    Diet composition of a generalist predator, the red fox ( Vulpes vulpes) in relation to season (winter or summer) and abundance of multi-annually cyclic voles was studied in western Finland from 1983 to 1995. The proportion of scats (PS; a total of 58 scats) including each food category was calculated for each prey group. Microtus voles (the field vole M. agrestis and the sibling vole M. rossiaemeridionalis) were the main prey group of foxes (PS = 0.55) and they frequently occurred in the scats both in the winter and summer (PSs 0.50 and 0.62, respectively). There was a positive correlation between the PSs of Microtus voles in the winter diet of foxes and the density indices of these voles in the previous autumn. Other microtine rodents (the bank vole Clethrionomys glareolus, the water vole Arvicola terrestris and the muskrat Ondatra zibethicus) were consumed more in winter than in summer. The unusually high small mustelid predation by red foxes (PS = approx. 0.10) in our study area gives qualitative support for the hypothesis on the limiting impact of mammalian predators on least weasel and stoat populations. None of the important prey groups was preyed upon more at low than at high densities of main prey ( Microtus voles). This is consistent with the notion that red foxes are generalist predators that tend to opportunistically subsist on many prey groups. Among these prey groups, particularly hares and birds (including grouse), were frequently used as food by foxes.

  8. A Multiplex PCR assay to differentiate between dog and red fox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weissenberger, M; Reichert, W; Mattern, R

    2011-11-01

    Foxes are frequently the cause of car accidents in Baden-Württemberg (BW, Germany). The domestic dog (Canis familiaris) is in close relation to the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and the silver fox which is a coat colour variant of the red fox. As insurance claims that involve accidents with animals require authentication, we analyzed frequency distribution and allele sizes in two canine microsatellite loci in 26 dogs (different breeds) and 19 red foxes of the region of BW, Germany. Moreover, sequencing analysis was performed. Red foxes exhibited only 1 allele at each microsatellite locus, whereas in dog 7 alleles at the CPH4 locus and 6 alleles at the CPH12 locus were detected. Sequences of PCR products from the two species revealed several differences between dogs and foxes. We established a sequenced allelic ladder and give population data from dogs and red foxes from the region of BW, Germany. Using microsatellite polymorphisms is efficient in differentiating between dogs and foxes in forensic casework. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. A spring aerial census of red foxes in North Dakota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.; Pfeifer, W.K.; Allen, S.H.

    1975-01-01

    Systematic aerial searches were flown on transects to locate adult red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), pups, and rearing dens on 559.4 km2 (six townships) in eastern North Dakota during mid-May and mid-June each year from 1969 through 1973 and during mid-April 1969 and early May 1970. The combined sightings of foxes and fox dens from the mid-May and mid-June searches were used to identify individual fox families. The number of fox families was used as the measurement of density. Dens, highly visible during the mid-May searches, were the most reliable family indicator; 84 percent of 270 families identified during the study were represented by dens. Adult foxes second in importance, were most observable during the mid-May searches when 20 to 35 percent of those estimated to be available were sighted. Adult sightings during other search periods ranged from 4 to 17 percent of those available. Pup sightings were the most variable family indicator, but they led to the discovery of some dens. Sources of error for which adjustment factors were determined are: den moves exceeding criterion established for the spacing of dens in a single family, overestimation of the number of fox families living near township boundaries, and the percentage of fox families overlooked during the aerial searches. These adjustment factors appeared to be largely compensatory.

  10. Does litter size variation affect models of terrestrial carnivore extinction risk and management?

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    Eleanor S Devenish-Nelson

    Full Text Available Individual variation in both survival and reproduction has the potential to influence extinction risk. Especially for rare or threatened species, reliable population models should adequately incorporate demographic uncertainty. Here, we focus on an important form of demographic stochasticity: variation in litter sizes. We use terrestrial carnivores as an example taxon, as they are frequently threatened or of economic importance. Since data on intraspecific litter size variation are often sparse, it is unclear what probability distribution should be used to describe the pattern of litter size variation for multiparous carnivores.We used litter size data on 32 terrestrial carnivore species to test the fit of 12 probability distributions. The influence of these distributions on quasi-extinction probabilities and the probability of successful disease control was then examined for three canid species - the island fox Urocyon littoralis, the red fox Vulpes vulpes, and the African wild dog Lycaon pictus. Best fitting probability distributions differed among the carnivores examined. However, the discretised normal distribution provided the best fit for the majority of species, because variation among litter-sizes was often small. Importantly, however, the outcomes of demographic models were generally robust to the distribution used.These results provide reassurance for those using demographic modelling for the management of less studied carnivores in which litter size variation is estimated using data from species with similar reproductive attributes.

  11. Small mammals of the Mongolian mountain steppe region near Erdensant: insights from live-trapping and bird pellet remains.

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    Joanne L. Isaac

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Relatively little is known of the distribution, abundance and ecology of small mammals in Mongolia and as a result there is scant knowledge of the effects of environmental and anthropogenic factors on small mammal populations. The aim of this study was to assess the occurrence of small mammals in mountain steppe habitat from live-trapping and analysis of mammal remains from raptor pellets and below nests. During live-trapping, root voles ( Microtus oeconemus were the most commonly caught species accounting for 47.5 % of captures, striped hamsters ( Cricetulus barabensis and pika ( Ochotona hyperborea accounted for 30 % and 22.5 % of captures respectively. Temperature influenced trapping success, with small mammals appearing to avoid being active at temperatures over 20 ̊C. The three species caught on the trapping grid appeared to avoid competition for resources through both temporal and spatial differences in the use of available habitat. Mammals identified from raptor pellets and other remains included the grey hamster ( Cricatulus migratorius , Siberian marmot ( Marmota sibirica , red fox ( Vulpes vulpes , long-tailed souslik ( Citellus undulatus and the Daurian mole ( Myospalax aspalax. Results are discussed in terms of their relevance to the conservation of mammals in Mongolia and their co-existence with livestock and humans.

  12. Behavioral interactions of penned red and arctic foxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudzinski, D.R.; Graves, H.B.; Sargeant, A.B.; Storm, G.L.

    1982-01-01

    Expansion of the geographical distribution of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) into the far north tundra region may lead to competition between arctic (Alopex lagopus) and red foxes for space and resources. Behavioral interactions between red and arctic foxes were evaluated during 9 trials conducted in a 4.05-ha enclosure near Woodworth, North Dakota. Each trial consisted of introducing a male-female pair of arctic foxes into the enclosure and allowing them to acclimate for approximately a week before releasing a female red fox into the enclosure, followed by her mate a few days later. In 8 of 9 trials, red foxes were dominant over arctic foxes during encounters. Activity of the arctic foxes decreased upon addition of red foxes. Arctic foxes tried unsuccessfully to defend preferred den, resting, and feeding areas. Even though the outcome of competition between red and arctic foxes in the Arctic is uncertain, the more aggressive red fox can dominate arctic foxes in direct competition for den sites and other limited resources.

  13. A case history of a dynamic resource--the red fox

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.; Sanderson, G.C.

    1982-01-01

    Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) population trends in midwestern North America since 1800 were examined. During 1801-1900, the red fox expanded its range south to include most of the region, but populations remained low in most areas. During 1901-30, it became scarce or absent in many northern areas but was common in southern areas. During 1931-45, populations in most of the region increased to high levels. From 1946 to 1980 populations remained high and westward range expansions occurred on the northern plains. Three factors appear primarily responsible for major population changes. Habitat conditions improved after settlement, but in many areas population buildup was delayed. Interspecific canid competition, especially from expanding coyote (Canis latrans) populations, held red fox populations at low levels, especially in the west. Excessive harvest for fur contributed to holding populations down in many areas, especially during the early 1900's when pelt values were exceptionally high. Major population increases during the 1930's and early 1940's coincided with declining pelt prices and resulted in widespread implementation of fox bounties. In the 1960's, bounties were gradually discontinued, pelt prices increased, and restrictions on season length and harvest methods were implemented in most states.

  14. Parasite species of the endangered Iberian wolf (Canis lupus signatus and a sympatric widespread carnivore

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    Ana Figueiredo

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Parasites have a profound impact on wildlife population dynamics. However, until some years ago, studies on the occurrence and prevalence of wildlife parasites were neglected comparatively with the studies on humans and domestic animals. In this study, we determined the parasite prevalence of two sympatric wild canids: the endangered Iberian wolf (Canis lupus signatus and the widespread red fox (Vulpes vulpes, in central Portugal. From November 2014 to July 2015, fresh fecal samples from both species were collected monthly in several transects distributed throughout the study area. All samples were submitted to several coprological techniques. In total, 6 helminth parasites (Crenosoma vulpis, Angiostrongylus vasorum, Toxocara canis, Trichuris vulpis, Ancylostomatidae, Toxascaris leonina, and a protozoa (Balantidium coli were identified based on size and morphology. The red fox was infected by seven different parasites while the Iberian wolf was infected by four. All parasites present in wolf were also present in the red fox. C. vulpis had the higher prevalence in red fox, while Ancylostomatidae were the most prevalent parasites in wolf. To our knowledge, this is the first study in this isolated subpopulation of the Iberian wolf. Our results show that both carnivores carry parasites that are of concern as they are pathogenic to humans and other wild and domestic animals. We suggest that surveillance programs must also include monitoring protocols of wildlife; particularly endangered species.

  15. Inferring the distribution and demography of an invasive species from sighting data: the red fox incursion into Tasmania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caley, Peter; Ramsey, David S L; Barry, Simon C

    2015-01-01

    A recent study has inferred that the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is now widespread in Tasmania as of 2010, based on the extraction of fox DNA from predator scats. Heuristically, this inference appears at first glance to be at odds with the lack of recent confirmed discoveries of either road-killed foxes--the last of which occurred in 2006, or hunter killed foxes--the most recent in 2001. This paper demonstrates a method to codify this heuristic analysis and produce inferences consistent with assumptions and data. It does this by formalising the analysis in a transparent and repeatable manner to make inference on the past, present and future distribution of an invasive species. It utilizes Approximate Bayesian Computation to make inferences. Importantly, the method is able to inform management of invasive species within realistic time frames, and can be applied widely. We illustrate the technique using the Tasmanian fox data. Based on the pattern of carcass discoveries of foxes in Tasmania, we infer that the population of foxes in Tasmania is most likely extinct, or restricted in distribution and demographically weak as of 2013. It is possible, though unlikely, that that population is widespread and/or demographically robust. This inference is largely at odds with the inference from the predator scat survey data. Our results suggest the chances of successfully eradicating the introduced red fox population in Tasmania may be significantly higher than previously thought.

  16. Corynebacterium diphtheriae in a free-roaming red fox: case report and historical review on diphtheria in animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sing, Andreas; Konrad, Regina; Meinel, Dominik M; Mauder, Norman; Schwabe, Ingo; Sting, Reinhard

    2016-08-01

    Corynebacterium diphtheriae, the classical causative agent of diphtheria, is considered to be nearly restricted to humans. Here we report the first finding of a non-toxigenic C. diphtheriae biovar belfanti strain in a free-roaming wild animal. The strain obtained from the subcutis and mammary gland of a dead red fox (Vulpes vulpes) was characterized by biochemical and molecular methods including MALDI-TOF and Multi Locus Sequence Typing. Since C. diphtheriae infections of animals, usually with close contact to humans, are reported only very rarely, an intense review comprising also scientific literature from the beginning of the 20th century was performed. Besides the present case, only 11 previously reported C. diphtheriae animal infections could be verified using current scientific criteria. Our report is the first on the isolation of C. diphtheriae from a wildlife animal without any previous human contact. In contrast, the very few unambiguous publications on C. diphtheriae in animals referred to livestock or pet animals with close human contact. C. diphtheriae carriage in animals has to be considered as an exceptionally rare event.

  17. Anti-predator meshing may provide greater protection for sea turtle nests than predator removal.

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    Julie M O'Connor

    Full Text Available The problem of how to protect sea turtle nests from terrestrial predators is of worldwide concern. On Queensland's southern Sunshine Coast, depredation of turtle nests by the introduced European red fox (Vulpes vulpes has been recorded as the primary terrestrial cause of egg and hatchling mortality. We investigated the impact of foxes on the nests of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta and occasional green turtle (Chelonia mydas over ten nesting seasons. Meshing of nests with fox exclusion devices (FEDs was undertaken in all years accompanied by lethal fox control in the first five-year period, but not in the second five-year period. Lethal fox control was undertaken in the study area from 2005 to February 2010, but foxes still breached 27% (range19-52% of turtle nests. In the second five-year period, despite the absence of lethal fox control, the average percentage of nests breached was less than 3% (range 0-4%. Comparison of clutch depredation rates in the two five-year periods demonstrated that continuous nest meshing may be more effective than lethal fox control in mitigating the impact of foxes on turtle nests. In the absence of unlimited resources available for the eradication of exotic predators, the use of FEDs and the support and resourcing of a dedicated volunteer base can be considered an effective turtle conservation tool on some beaches.

  18. Estimated prevalence of Echinococcus multilocularis in rac-coon dogs Nyctereutes procyonoides in northern Branden-burg, Germany

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    Sabine SCHWARZ, Astrid SUTOR, Christoph STAUBACH, Roswitha MATTIS, Kirsten TACKMANN, Franz Josef CONRATHS

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Human alveolar echinococcosis, caused by the larval stage of the small fox tapeworm, is a lethal zoonotic infection if left untreated. E. multilocularis is distributed in the Northern Hemisphere and lives in the small intestines of carnivores, mainly canids. The main definitive host of E. multilocularis in European countries is the red fox (Vulpes vulpes and in the last ten years new endemic areas for the parasite in Central Europe have been identified. In some areas, for instance in Germany, the raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides - a spreading neozoon - must be regarded as an additional definitive host for E. multilocularis. In 2001 this parasite was found for the first time in raccoon dogs in the Federal State of Brandenburg, Germany. Between 2000 and 2008, 1,252 raccoon dogs from Brandenburg were examined by the Intestinal Scraping Technique. The majority of samples were obtained in five northern counties and all 60 animals that tested positive for E. multilocularis were located there. The estimated true prevalence calculated by a beta-binomial- model ranged from 6%–12% [Current Zoology 57 (5: 655–661, 2011].

  19. The influence of habitat structure on genetic differentiation in red fox populations in north-eastern Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mullins, Jacinta; McDevitt, Allan D; Kowalczyk, Rafał; Ruczyńska, Iwona; Górny, Marcin; Wójcik, Jan M

    2014-01-01

    The red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) has the widest global distribution among terrestrial carnivore species, occupying most of the Northern Hemisphere in its native range. Because it carries diseases that can be transmitted to humans and domestic animals, it is important to gather information about their movements and dispersal in their natural habitat but it is difficult to do so at a broad scale with trapping and telemetry. In this study, we have described the genetic diversity and structure of red fox populations in six areas of north-eastern Poland, based on samples collected from 2002-2003. We tested 22 microsatellite loci isolated from the dog and the red fox genome to select a panel of nine polymorphic loci suitable for this study. Genetic differentiation between the six studied populations was low to moderate and analysis in Structure revealed a panmictic population in the region. Spatial autocorrelation among all individuals showed a pattern of decreasing relatedness with increasing distance and this was not significantly negative until 93 km, indicating a pattern of isolation-by-distance over a large area. However, there was no correlation between genetic distance and either Euclidean distance or least-cost path distance at the population level. There was a significant relationship between genetic distance and the proportion of large forests and water along the Euclidean distances. These types of habitats may influence dispersal paths taken by red foxes, which is useful information in terms of wildlife disease management.

  20. Spatial relations between sympatric coyotes and red foxes in North Dakota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.; Allen, S.H.; Hastings, J.O.

    1987-01-01

    Spatial relations between coyotes (Canis latrans) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) on a 360-km2 area in North Dakota were studied during 1977-78. Coyote families occupied large (mean = 61.2 km2), relatively exclusive territories that encompassed about one-half of the study area. Fox families occupied much smaller (mean = 11.9 km2), relatively exclusive, territories that overlapped perimeters of coyote territories and/or encompassed area unoccupied by coyotes. No fox family lived totally within a coyote territory, but 3 fox families lived within the 153.6-km2 home range of an unattached yearling male coyote. Both coyotes and foxes, from families with overlapping territories, tended to use their overlap areas less than was expected by amount of overlap. Encounters between radio-equipped coyotes and foxes from families with overlapping territories occurred less often than was expected by chance. Foxes living near coyotes exhibited considerable tenacity to their territories, and no monitored fox was killed by coyotes during 2,518 fox-days of radio surveillance. A hypothesis for coyote-induced fox population declines, based largely on fox avoidance mechanisms, is presented.

  1. High infection rate of zoonotic Eucoleus aerophilus infection in foxes from Serbia

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    Lalošević Vesna

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The respiratory capillariid nematode Eucoleus aerophilus (Creplin, 1839 infects wild and domestic carnivores and, occasionally, humans. Thus far, a dozen of human infections have been published in the literature but it cannot be ruled out that lung capillariosis is underdiagnosed in human medicine. Also, the apparent spreading of E. aerophilus in different geographic areas spurs new studies on the epidemiology of this nematode. After the recognition of the first human case of E. aerophilus infection in Serbia, there is a significant merit in enhancing knowledge on the distribution of the nematode. In the present work the infection rate of pulmonary capillariosis was investigated in 70 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes from the northern part of Serbia by autopsy. The estimated infection rate with Eucoleus aerophilus was 84%. In contrast, by copromicroscopic examination only 38% of foxes were positive. In addition, 10 foxes were investigated for the closely related species in nasal cavity, Eucoleus boehmi, and nine were positive. Our study demonstrates one of the highest infection rates of pulmonary capillariosis in foxes over the world.

  2. Red fox prey demands and implications to prairie duck production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.

    1978-01-01

    Experiments were conducted during spring and summer with 33 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) to determine prey demands, feeding characteristics, and growth rates using natural foods. Pups began eating prey the 4th week after birth. Then, prey consumption averaged 1.38 and 1.90 kg/pup/week for weeks 5-8 and 9-12 of the denning season respectively, and 2.54 kg/pup/week for the postdenning period. Feeding by adults averaged 2.25 kg/adult/week. Free water was not needed by either pups or adults. About 90 percent of the prey offered to pups on simulated natural diets was consumed, remains varied with prey availability and prey type. Prey biomass required by a typical fox family was estimated at 18.5 kg/km2 for the 12-week denning season and 2.4 kg/km2/week for the postdenning period. Because of the large prey demands, ducks could represent a small part of the foxes' diet and yet be of consequence to the productivity of particular species. An example is provided for the mallard (Anas platyrhynchos).

  3. Potential Sources of High Frequency and Biphonic Vocalization in the Dhole (Cuon alpinus.

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    Roland Frey

    Full Text Available Biphonation, i.e. two independent fundamental frequencies in a call spectrum, is a prominent feature of vocal activity in dog-like canids. Dog-like canids can produce a low (f0 and a high (g0 fundamental frequency simultaneously. In contrast, fox-like canids are only capable of producing the low fundamental frequency (f0. Using a comparative anatomical approach for revealing macroscopic structures potentially responsible for canid biphonation, we investigated the vocal anatomy for 4 (1 male, 3 female captive dholes (Cuon alpinus and for 2 (1 male, 1 female wild red fox (Vulpes vulpes. In addition, we analyzed the acoustic structure of vocalizations in the same dholes that served postmortem as specimens for the anatomical investigation. All study dholes produced both high-frequency and biphonic calls. The anatomical reconstructions revealed that the vocal morphologies of the dhole are very similar to those of the red fox. These results suggest that the high-frequency and biphonic calls in dog-like canids can be produced without specific anatomical adaptations of the sound-producing structures. We discuss possible production modes for the high-frequency and biphonic calls involving laryngeal and nasal structures.

  4. Range-wide multilocus phylogeography of the red fox reveals ancient continental divergence, minimal genomic exchange and distinct demographic histories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Statham, Mark J; Murdoch, James; Janecka, Jan; Aubry, Keith B; Edwards, Ceiridwen J; Soulsbury, Carl D; Berry, Oliver; Wang, Zhenghuan; Harrison, David; Pearch, Malcolm; Tomsett, Louise; Chupasko, Judith; Sacks, Benjamin N

    2014-10-01

    Widely distributed taxa provide an opportunity to compare biogeographic responses to climatic fluctuations on multiple continents and to investigate speciation. We conducted the most geographically and genomically comprehensive study to date of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), the world's most widely distributed wild terrestrial carnivore. Analyses of 697 bp of mitochondrial sequence in ~1000 individuals suggested an ancient Middle Eastern origin for all extant red foxes and a 400 kya (SD = 139 kya) origin of the primary North American (Nearctic) clade. Demographic analyses indicated a major expansion in Eurasia during the last glaciation (~50 kya), coinciding with a previously described secondary transfer of a single matriline (Holarctic) to North America. In contrast, North American matrilines (including the transferred portion of Holarctic clade) exhibited no signatures of expansion until the end of the Pleistocene (~12 kya). Analyses of 11 autosomal loci from a subset of foxes supported the colonization time frame suggested by mtDNA (and the fossil record) but, in contrast, reflected no detectable secondary transfer, resulting in the most fundamental genomic division of red foxes at the Bering Strait. Endemic continental Y-chromosome clades further supported this pattern. Thus, intercontinental genomic exchange was overall very limited, consistent with long-term reproductive isolation since the initial colonization of North America. Based on continental divergence times in other carnivoran species pairs, our findings support a model of peripatric speciation and are consistent with the previous classification of the North American red fox as a distinct species, V. fulva. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Differential effects of coyotes and red foxes on duck nest success

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sovada, Marsha A.; Sargeant, A.; Grier, J.W.

    1995-01-01

    Low recruitment rates prevail among ducks in the Prairie Pothole Region of North America, primarily because of high nest depredation rates. The red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is a major predator of duck eggs, but fox abundance is depressed by coyotes (Canis latrans). We tested the hypothesis that nest success of upland-nesting ducks is higher in areas with coyotes than in areas with red foxes. We conducted the study during 1990-92 in uplands of 36 areas managed for nesting ducks in North Dakota and South Dakota. Overall nest success averaged 32% (95% CI = 25-40) on 17 study areas where coyotes were the principal canid and 17% (CI = 11-25) on 13 study areas where red foxes were the principal canid (P = 0.01). Both canids were common on 6 other areas, where nest success averaged 25% (CI = 13-47). Habitat composition, predator communities with the exception of canids, and species composition of duck nests in coyote and red fox areas were similar overall. Upon examining only nests with greater than or equal to 6 eggs on the last visit prior to hatch or depredation, we determined nests with evidence characteristic of fox predation accounted for 4% of depredated nests in coyote areas and 27% in fox areas (P = 0.001). An expanding coyote population is contributing to higher overall nest success. Management of coyotes may be an effective method for increasing duck nest success.

  6. Scavenging efficiency and red fox abundance in Mediterranean mountains with and without vultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Reyes, Zebensui; Sánchez-Zapata, José A.; Sebastián-González, Esther; Botella, Francisco; Carrete, Martina; Moleón, Marcos

    2017-02-01

    Vertebrate scavenging assemblages include two major functional groups: obligate scavengers (i.e., vultures), which depend totally on carrion and are undergoing severe declines around the globe, and facultative scavengers, which exploit carrion opportunistically and are generally ubiquitous. Our goal was to investigate the hypothesis that vultures can indirectly regulate the abundance of mesopredators (i.e., facultative scavengers) through modulating their access to carrion resources. We studied scavenging efficiency and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) abundance in two neighbouring areas of South-eastern Spain where vultures (mainly griffon vultures Gyps fulvus) are present (Cazorla) and absent (Espuña). To do so, we monitored ungulate carcasses consumption during winter and summer, and counted red fox scats along walking transects as a proxy of fox density. Our results confirmed that scavenging efficiency was higher in Cazorla and in carcasses visited by vultures. This resulted in increasing scavenging opportunities for facultative scavengers where vultures were absent. Accordingly, mean red fox abundance was higher in Espuña. These results suggest the existence of a vulture-mediated mesopredator release (i.e., an increase of mesopredator numbers following vulture loss), which could trigger important indirect ecological effects. Also, our study demonstrates that facultative scavengers are hardly able to functionally replace vultures, mainly because the former exploit carrion on a slower time scale.

  7. Uncertainty in population growth rates: determining confidence intervals from point estimates of parameters.

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    Eleanor S Devenish Nelson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Demographic models are widely used in conservation and management, and their parameterisation often relies on data collected for other purposes. When underlying data lack clear indications of associated uncertainty, modellers often fail to account for that uncertainty in model outputs, such as estimates of population growth. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We applied a likelihood approach to infer uncertainty retrospectively from point estimates of vital rates. Combining this with resampling techniques and projection modelling, we show that confidence intervals for population growth estimates are easy to derive. We used similar techniques to examine the effects of sample size on uncertainty. Our approach is illustrated using data on the red fox, Vulpes vulpes, a predator of ecological and cultural importance, and the most widespread extant terrestrial mammal. We show that uncertainty surrounding estimated population growth rates can be high, even for relatively well-studied populations. Halving that uncertainty typically requires a quadrupling of sampling effort. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results compel caution when comparing demographic trends between populations without accounting for uncertainty. Our methods will be widely applicable to demographic studies of many species.

  8. Fear or food - abundance of red fox in relation to occurrence of lynx and wolf.

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    Wikenros, Camilla; Aronsson, Malin; Liberg, Olof; Jarnemo, Anders; Hansson, Jessica; Wallgren, Märtha; Sand, Håkan; Bergström, Roger

    2017-08-22

    Apex predators may affect mesopredators through intraguild predation and/or supply of carrion from their prey, causing a trade-off between avoidance and attractiveness. We used wildlife triangle snow-tracking data to investigate the abundance of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in relation to lynx (Lynx lynx) and wolf (Canis lupus) occurrence as well as land composition and vole (Microtus spp.) density. Data from the Swedish wolf-monitoring system and VHF/GPS-collared wolves were used to study the effect of wolf pack size and time since wolf territory establishment on fox abundance. Bottom-up processes were more influential than top-down effects as the proportion of arable land was the key indicator of fox abundance at the landscape level. At this spatial scale, there was no effect of wolf abundance on fox abundance, whereas lynx abundance had a positive effect. In contrast, at the wolf territory level there was a negative effect of wolves on fox abundance when including detailed information of pack size and time since territory establishment, whereas there was no effect of lynx abundance. This study shows that different apex predator species may affect mesopredator abundance in different ways and that the results may be dependent on the spatiotemporal scale and resolution of the data.

  9. Autochthonous Hepatozoon infection in hunting dogs and foxes from the Czech Republic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitková, Barbora; Hrazdilová, Kristýna; Steinbauer, Vladimír; D'Amico, Gianluca; Mihalca, Andrei Daniel; Modrý, David

    2016-11-01

    Blood samples from 21 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and 8 hunting dogs from the same locality in the Czech Republic were examined for presence of Hepatozoon canis/Hepatozoon sp. The dogs were selected based on their close contact with foxes during fox bolting and because they had not traveled into known endemic areas. Using diagnostic PCR amplifying partial 18S rDNA fragment, Hepatozoon DNA was detected in 20 red foxes (95 %) and 4 dogs (50 %). From 8 positive foxes and 2 positive dogs, we obtained nearly complete 18S rDNA sequences. Phylogenetic analyses of these sequences revealed very low variability. Buffy coat smears from positive dogs were prepared and examined. No Hepatozoon gamonts were found. This study provides the first report of autochthonous infection of H. canis/Hepatozoon in dogs and foxes from the Czech Republic. Our study indirectly demonstrates cross infection between red foxes and dogs and confirms autochthonous infection of Hepatozoon canis in dogs living in a geographic area well outside the range of Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato, which is so far the only known vector of H. canis in Europe.

  10. Molecular epidemiology of parasitic protozoa and Ehrlichia canis in wildlife in Madrid (central Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Criado-Fornelio, Angel; Martín-Pérez, T; Verdú-Expósito, C; Reinoso-Ortiz, S A; Pérez-Serrano, J

    2018-07-01

    Wildlife species are involved in the transmission of diverse pathogens. This study aimed to monitor raccoons (Procyon lotor), American minks (Neovison vison), and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) as potential reservoirs in central Spain. Specifically, 200 spleen and fecal samples (from 194 raccoons, 3 minks, and 3 foxes) were analyzed molecularly by PCR/qPCR and sequencing for the presence of piroplasmids, Hepatozoon spp., Toxoplasma gondii, and Ehrlichia canis infections in the Community of Madrid (Spain). Biological samples were obtained in the years 2014, 2015, and 2016. No pathogen DNA was found in fecal samples. In contrast, analysis of raccoon spleen samples revealed that Toxoplasma was the most prevalent pathogen (prevalence 3.6 ± 2.6%), followed by Hepatozoon canis and E. canis (each with a prevalence of 2.57 ± 2.2%). Hepatozoon canis was also diagnosed in all three of the analyzed foxes. Analysis of yearly prevalence showed that tick-borne pathogens were less frequent in raccoon in 2015, a dry and warm year compared both to 2014 and 2016. These data suggest that fecal PCR assays are unsuitable for detection of DNA of non-erythrocytic pathogens. Furthermore, they demonstrate that the raccoon (an invasive species often living in proximity to domestic areas) and the red fox are putative reservoirs for pathogenic organisms in the Community of Madrid.

  11. A Comparison of Visual and Genetic Techniques for Identifying Japanese Marten Scats - Enabling Diet Examination in Relation to Seasonal Food Availability in a Sub-Alpine Area of Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hisano, Masumi; Hoshino, Lisa; Kamada, Shouko; Masuda, Ryuichi; Newman, Chris; Kaneko, Yayoi

    2017-04-01

    We compared the reliability of visual diagnostic criteria to DNA diagnostic techniques, including newly designed primers, to discriminate Japanese marten (Martes melampus) feces from those of other sympatric carnivore species. Visual criteria proved > 95% reliable for fresh, odoriferous scats in good condition. Based upon this verification, we then examined if and how Japanese marten diet differs among seasons at high elevation study site (1500-2026 m). We also considered how intra-specific competition with the Japanese red fox (Vulpes vulpes japonica) may shape marten feeding ecology. From 120 Japanese marten fecal samples, high elevation diet comprised (frequency of occurrence) 30.6-66.0% mammals, 41.0-72.2% insects and 10.6-46.2% fruits, subject to seasonal variation, with a Shannon-Weaver index value of 2.77. These findings contrast substantially to seasonal marten diet reported in adjacent lowland regions (700-900 m), particularly in terms of fruit consumption, showing the trophic adaptability of the Japanese marten. We also noted a substantial dietary overlap with the red fox (n = 26 scats) with a Shannon-Weaver index of 2.61, inferring little trophic niche mutual exclusion (trophic niche overlap: 0.95), although some specific seasonal prey selection differences were likely related to relative differences in body size between foxes and martens. This additional information on the feeding ecology of the Japanese marten enables a better assessment of the specific risks populations face in mountainous regions.

  12. Trophic niche partitioning between two native and two exotic carnivores in SW Portugal

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    M. J. Santos

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available The introduction of exotic species is one of the most pervasive consequences of the increased human mobility. The most known negative effects are the decrease or extinction of natives. The common-genet, Genetta genetta, and the Egyptian mongoose, Herpestes ichneumon, were introduced in the Iberian Peninsula in the 15th and 19th centuries, respectively. The competitive exclusion principle defines that two ecologically similar species cannot coexist. Thus, some degree of partitioning has to occur in species realized niche, which can occur at the trophic level. To test this hypothesis of partitioning we compared the diet of these two exotic species with that of two native species (stone marten, Martes foina, and red fox, Vulpes vulpes. The results show a high degree of overlap (>45% between the diets of species similar in their feeding strategies (arboreal and ground feeding. Nonetheless, at the finer scale of prey consumed at the species level some differences are found between the native and exotic species. These results suggest that if coexistence is due to trophic niche partitioning it only occurs at the level of the consumed species. However, coexistence may also be due to a combination of different strategies (home-range size, time and space use that structured the different realized niches of each species.

  13. Applying Knowledge of Species-Typical Scavenging Behavior to the Search and Recovery of Mammalian Skeletal Remains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Alexandria; Stillman, Richard; Smith, Martin J; Korstjens, Amanda H

    2016-03-01

    Forensic investigations involving animal scavenging of human remains require a physical search of the scene and surrounding areas. However, there is currently no standard procedure in the U.K. for physical searches of scavenged human remains. The Winthrop and grid search methods used by police specialist searchers for scavenged remains were examined through the use of mock red fox (Vulpes vulpes) scatter scenes. Forty-two police specialist searchers from two different regions within the U.K. were divided between those briefed and not briefed with fox-typical scavenging information. Briefing searchers with scavenging information significantly affected the recovery of scattered bones (χ(2) = 11.45, df = 1, p = 0.001). Searchers briefed with scavenging information were 2.05 times more likely to recover bones. Adaptions to search methods used by searchers were evident on a regional level, such that searchers more accustom to a peri-urban to rural region recovered a higher percentage of scattered bones (58.33%, n = 84). © 2015 American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

  14. Predator removal enhances waterbird restoration in Chesapeake Bay (Maryland)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erwin, R. Michael; McGowan, Peter C.; Reese, Jan

    2011-01-01

    This report represents an update to an earlier report(Erwin et al. 2007a) on wildlife restoration on the largest dredge material island project in the United States underway in Talbot County, Maryland (Figure 1) in the mid–Chesapeake Bay region, referred to as the Paul Sarbanes Ecosystem Restoration Project at Poplar Island (www.nab.usace.army.mil/projects/Maryland/PoplarIsland/documents.html). An important component of this largescale restoration effort focused on water birds, as many of these species have undergone significant declines in the Chesapeake region over the past 30 years (Erwin et al. 2007b). The priority waterbird species include common terns (Sterna hirundo), least terns (S. antillarum), snowy egrets (Egretta thula), and ospreys (Pandion haliaetus). Although significant numbers of common terns (more than 800 pairs in 2003), least terns (62 pairs in 2003), snowy egrets (50 or more pairs by 2005), and ospreys (7 to 10 pairs) have nested on Poplar Island since early 2000, tern productivity especially had been strongly limited by a combination of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and great horned owl (Bubo virginianus) predation. Fox trapping began in 2004, and four were removed that year; no more evidence of fox presence was found in 2005 or subsequently. The owls proved to be more problematic.

  15. Diagnosis of canine echinococcosis: comparison of coproantigen detection with necropsy in stray dogs and red foxes from northern Jordan

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    El-Shehabi F.S.

    2000-06-01

    Full Text Available The sandwich enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA was used as a diagnostic test for Echinococcus granulosus infection by detecting coproantigens in 94 stray dogs Canis familiaris and eight red foxes (Vulpes vulpes from northern Jordan. The results were analyzed in relation to actual helminth infection as revealed by necropsy. The infection rate of dogs with E. granulosus was 13.8 % with a worm load ranging between 3 - > 10,000 per infected dog. In contrast, eight of 13 E. granulosus infected dogs were coproantigen positive (overall sensitivity 61.5 %. The sensitivity increased to 87.5 % and 100 % in dogs harboring > 20 and > 100 worms/dog, respectively. The specificity of coproantigen-ELISA was 91 %. The greatest cross-reactivity was found in dogs infected with Dipylidium caninum. The positive and negative predictive values for the coproantigen-ELISA test were 50 % and 94.2 %, respectively. Thus, a coproantigen negative dog is most probably truly negative for E. granulosus. In contrast, a coproantigen positive dog may not be truly positive for E. granulosus, except if it has a high worm burden of > 100 worms/animal.

  16. Investigation of Echinococcus multilocularis in Environmental Definitive Host Feces in the Asian and the European Parts of Turkey

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    Ali Tümay Gürler

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available A study was carried out to investigate the presence of Echinococcus multilocularis in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes in two regions of Turkey—central Anatolia (in Asia Minor and Thrace (in the European part of Turkey. A total of 405 putative fox feces were collected from central Anatolia (186 specimens in 59 locations and from Thrace (219 specimens in 114 locations. All samples were examined by the flotation and sieving method for taeniid eggs, and positive and putative samples were further analyzed by multiplex PCR. In seven samples from three locations in central Anatolia (5.1% and in one (0.9% from Thrace, E. multilocularis DNA was amplified, and this result was confirmed with another PCR specific for E. multilocularis. In addition, Echinococcus granulosus s.l. was found in two (0.5% of the samples. Although alveolar echinococcosis (AE is known as a serious zoonosis in Turkey, this is the first field study detecting E. multilocularis in collected fecal samples documenting the environmental contamination with eggs of this zoonotic parasite.

  17. Infection of foxes by Echinococcocus multilocularis in urban and suburban areas of Nancy, France: influence of feeding habits and environment

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    Robardet E.

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated the impact of biological and environmental factors on the infection of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes by Echinococcus multilocularis in an endemic area of north-east France. From January 2004 to April 2006, 127 foxes were examined for E. multilocularis and their stomach contents analysed. The effect of year, season, age, sex and urbanisation level on E. multilocularis presence was estimated using a General Linear Model (GLM with logit link, (i.e. logistic regression. Urbanisation level was the only influencing factor, with a decreasing gradient from rural [54%, CI 95% (40-68] to peri-urban [31%, CI 95% (15-52] and urban area [4%, CI 95% (0.7-15]. The consumption of Arvicola terrestris and Microtus sp., grassland species, the main presumed intermediate hosts of E. multilocularis, was studied by the same approach. The two species were consumed less in the urban area and more in autumn than in spring. Anthropogenic food consumption was linked to urbanisation and to age. The frequency of anthropogenic food consumption decreased in the rural area. A global model explaining the presence of E. multilocularis and including urbanisation level and diet was then elaborated. Independently of urbanisation, there was a suggestion of less E. multilocularis infection with anthropogenic food consumption. Red foxes consuming Microtus sp. and A. terrestris had higher worm burden than those that did not. The results suggest that the decreasing gradient observed from rural to urban area is linked to behaviour and feeding habits.

  18. A review of the geologic sections and the faunal assemblages of Aurelian Mammal Age of Latium (Italy) in the light of a new chronostratigraphic framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marra, F.; Nomade, S.; Pereira, A.; Petronio, C.; Salari, L.; Sottili, G.; Bahain, J.-J.; Boschian, G.; Di Stefano, G.; Falguères, C.; Florindo, F.; Gaeta, M.; Giaccio, B.; Masotta, M.

    2018-02-01

    The Aurelian Mammal Age for peninsular Italy was introduced on the basis of faunal assemblages mainly recovered at sites along the Via Aurelia west of Rome. These sites exposed a set of sedimentary deposits currently attributed to the Aurelia and to the Vitinia Formations correlated with MIS 9 and MIS 7, respectively. In the present paper we reconstruct the geologic-stratigraphic setting in the western sector of Rome within the wider context of glacio-eustatically controlled, geochronologically constrained aggradational successions defined for this region. We present a chronostratigraphic study based on dedicated field surveys, that, combined with five new 40Ar/39Ar ages and eighteen trace-element and EMP glass analyses of volcanic products, allow us to revise age and correlation with the Marine Isotopic Stages for 10 sites out of 12 previously attributed to the Aurelia Formation and the Torre in Pietra Faunal Unit. In particular, we demonstrate a MIS 13/MIS 11 age for several sections along the Via Aurelia between Malagrotta and Castel di Guido. Based on this new geochronological framework, the first occurrences of Canis lupus and Vulpes vulpes in Italy are antedated to MIS 11, within the Fontana Ranuccio Faunal Unit of the Galerian Mammal Age, consistent with the wider European context. This contribution is intended as the groundwork for a revision of the Middle Pleistocene Mammal Ages of the Italian peninsula, according to the improved chronostratigraphy of the geologic sections hosting the faunal assemblages.

  19. Brains of Native and Alien Mesocarnivores in Biomonitoring of Toxic Metals in Europe.

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    Elzbieta Kalisinska

    Full Text Available Mercury (Hg, lead (Pb and cadmium (Cd are involved in mammalian brain damage. However, little is known about Pb and Cd brain levels in wildlife that reflect the geochemical background. The aims of the study include the estimation of Hg, Pb and Cd concentrations, and the determination of relationships between these elements in the brains of 94 mesocarnivores. Road-killed or hunted animals were obtained from north-western Poland near the Polish-German border. The investigation covered the native Eurasian otter Lutra lutra, badger Meles meles, pine marten Martes martes, beech marten M. foina, European polecat Mustela putorius, red fox Vulpes vulpes, and alien species: feral and ranch American mink Neovison vison, raccoon Procyon lotor and raccoon dog Nyctereutes procyonoides. Depending on the diet and environmental pollution, the carnivore brains accumulated toxic metals in varying amounts. The highest median Hg levels (in mg/kg dry weight, dw were found in the piscivorous Eurasian otter and feral mink (2.44 and 3.96, Pb in the omnivorous raccoon (0.47, while Cd in minks (~0.06. We indicated that Pb-based ammunition is a significant source of the element in scavengers from hunting area, and we also found a significant correlation between Pb and Cd levels in the fox brain. Finally, this study is the first to suggest background levels for brain Pb and Cd in mesocarnivores (<0.50 and <0.04 mg/kg dw, respectively.

  20. A non-invasive genetic survey of the Pine marten (Martes martes in the western river Po plain (italy: preliminary results

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    Alessandro Balestrieri

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Riassunto Monitoraggio genetico non invasivo della martora (Martes martes nella pianura padana occidentale: risultati preliminari. Tra il 2003 e il 2004, due esemplari di martora (Martes martes sono stati investiti da automezzi sulla sponda sinistra del fiume Po (R. N. Garzaia di Valenza, Piemonte. Per accertare la presenza stabile della specie nella Riserva e lungo il tratto vercellese-alessandrino del Parco fluviale del Po, è stato applicato un metodo PCR-RFLP per l’analisi di mtDNA di origine fecale. A partire da gennaio 2007, sono state raccolte 212 feci attribuibili al genere Martes in base a forma e dimensioni. L’analisi di un campione di 117 feci (55% ha permesso di identificare 10 feci di martora e 15 di faina (M. foina, confermando la presenza della martora nella Riserva e accertandola per la prima volta in un’area collinare in sponda destra del Po (Camino, AL, circa 32 km a monte della Riserva. Resta da valutare se la scarsa resa dell’amplificazione del DNA (21,4% sia dovuta alla degradazione del materiale genetico o ad un numero elevato di feci di volpe (Vulpes vulpes erroneamente attribuite a Martes durante la fase di raccolta.

  1. Diets of introduced predators using stable isotopes and stomach contents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meckstroth, A.M.; Miles, A.K.; Chandra, S.

    2007-01-01

    In a study of predation on ground-nesting birds at South San Francisco Bay (South Bay), California, USA, we analyzed stomach contents and stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen to identify commonly consumed prey. We obtained the stomach contents from 206 nonnative red foxes (Vulpes vulpes regalis) collected in the South Bay area and Monterey County during 1995-2001 and from 68 feral cats (Felis silvestris) from the South Bay area during 2001-2002. We determined prey identity, biomass, and frequency, described seasonal diet trends, and derived an Index of Relative Importance. Avian species were the most frequent prey we found in the stomachs of red foxes from South Bay (61%), whereas small rodents were most frequent for red foxes from Monterey County (62%). Small rodents were the most frequent prey we found in feral cats (63%). Carbon and nitrogen isotopic signatures for foxes supported stomach content findings. However, isotope results indicated that cats received a majority of their energy from a source other than rodents and outside the natural system, which differed from the stomach content analysis. We demonstrated the utility of both stable isotope and stomach content analyses to establish a more complete understanding of predators' diets. This information aids natural resource managers in planning and evaluating future predator-removal programs and increases our understanding of the impacts of nonnative foxes and cats on native species.

  2. Wild dogma: An examination of recent “evidence” for dingo regulation of invasive mesopredator release in Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin L. ALLEN, Richard M. ENGEMAN, Lee R. ALLEN

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available There is growing interest in the role that apex predators play in shaping terrestrial ecosystems and maintaining trophic cascades. In line with the mesopredator release hypothesis, Australian dingoes (Canis lupus dingo and hybrids are assumed by many to regulate the abundance of invasive mesopredators, such as red foxes Vulpes vulpes and feral cats Felis catus, thereby providing indirect benefits to various threatened vertebrates. Several recent papers have claimed to provide evidence for the biodiversity benefits of dingoes in this way. Nevertheless, in this paper we highlight several critical weaknesses in the methodological approaches used in many of these reports, including lack of consideration for seasonal and habitat differences in activity, the complication of simple track-based indices by incorporating difficult-to-meet assumptions, and a reduction in sensitivity for assessing populations by using binary measures rather than potentially continuous measures. Of the 20 studies reviewed, 15 of them (75% contained serious methodological flaws, which may partly explain the inconclusive nature of the literature investigating interactions between invasive Australian predators. We therefore assert that most of the “growing body of evidence” for mesopredator release is merely an inconclusive growing body of literature only. We encourage those interested in studying the ecological roles of dingoes relative to invasive mesopredators and native prey species to account for the factors we identify, and caution the value of studies that have not done so [Current Zoology 57 (5: 568–583, 2011].

  3. Species identification refined by molecular scatology in a community of sympatric carnivores in Xinjiang, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laguardia, Alice; Wang, Jun; Shi, Fang-Lei; Shi, Kun; Riordan, Philip

    2015-03-18

    Many ecological studies and conservation management plans employ noninvasive scat sampling based on the assumption that species' scats can be correctly identified in the field. However, in habitats with sympatric similarly sized carnivores, misidentification of scats is frequent and can lead to bias in research results. To address the scat identification dilemma, molecular scatology techniques have been developed to extract DNA from the donor cells present on the outer lining of the scat samples. A total of 100 samples were collected in the winter of 2009 and 2011 in Taxkorgan region of Xinjiang, China. DNA was extracted successfully from 88% of samples and genetic species identification showed that more than half the scats identified in the field as snow leopard (Panthera uncia) actually belonged to fox (Vulpes vulpes). Correlation between scat characteristics and species were investigated, showing that diameter and dry weight of the scat were significantly different between the species. However it was not possible to define a precise range of values for each species because of extensive overlap between the morphological values. This preliminary study confirms that identification of snow leopard feces in the field is misleading. Research that relies upon scat samples to assess distribution or diet of the snow leopard should therefore employ molecular scatology techniques. These methods are financially accessible and employ relatively simple laboratory procedures that can give an indisputable response to species identification from scats.

  4. Anti-predator meshing may provide greater protection for sea turtle nests than predator removal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connor, Julie M; Limpus, Colin J; Hofmeister, Kate M; Allen, Benjamin L; Burnett, Scott E

    2017-01-01

    The problem of how to protect sea turtle nests from terrestrial predators is of worldwide concern. On Queensland's southern Sunshine Coast, depredation of turtle nests by the introduced European red fox (Vulpes vulpes) has been recorded as the primary terrestrial cause of egg and hatchling mortality. We investigated the impact of foxes on the nests of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) and occasional green turtle (Chelonia mydas) over ten nesting seasons. Meshing of nests with fox exclusion devices (FEDs) was undertaken in all years accompanied by lethal fox control in the first five-year period, but not in the second five-year period. Lethal fox control was undertaken in the study area from 2005 to February 2010, but foxes still breached 27% (range19-52%) of turtle nests. In the second five-year period, despite the absence of lethal fox control, the average percentage of nests breached was less than 3% (range 0-4%). Comparison of clutch depredation rates in the two five-year periods demonstrated that continuous nest meshing may be more effective than lethal fox control in mitigating the impact of foxes on turtle nests. In the absence of unlimited resources available for the eradication of exotic predators, the use of FEDs and the support and resourcing of a dedicated volunteer base can be considered an effective turtle conservation tool on some beaches.

  5. Brains of Native and Alien Mesocarnivores in Biomonitoring of Toxic Metals in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalisinska, Elzbieta; Lanocha-Arendarczyk, Natalia; Kosik-Bogacka, Danuta; Budis, Halina; Podlasinska, Joanna; Popiolek, Marcin; Pirog, Agnieszka; Jedrzejewska, Ewa

    2016-01-01

    Mercury (Hg), lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) are involved in mammalian brain damage. However, little is known about Pb and Cd brain levels in wildlife that reflect the geochemical background. The aims of the study include the estimation of Hg, Pb and Cd concentrations, and the determination of relationships between these elements in the brains of 94 mesocarnivores. Road-killed or hunted animals were obtained from north-western Poland near the Polish-German border. The investigation covered the native Eurasian otter Lutra lutra, badger Meles meles, pine marten Martes martes, beech marten M. foina, European polecat Mustela putorius, red fox Vulpes vulpes, and alien species: feral and ranch American mink Neovison vison, raccoon Procyon lotor and raccoon dog Nyctereutes procyonoides. Depending on the diet and environmental pollution, the carnivore brains accumulated toxic metals in varying amounts. The highest median Hg levels (in mg/kg dry weight, dw) were found in the piscivorous Eurasian otter and feral mink (2.44 and 3.96), Pb in the omnivorous raccoon (0.47), while Cd in minks (~0.06). We indicated that Pb-based ammunition is a significant source of the element in scavengers from hunting area, and we also found a significant correlation between Pb and Cd levels in the fox brain. Finally, this study is the first to suggest background levels for brain Pb and Cd in mesocarnivores (<0.50 and <0.04 mg/kg dw, respectively).

  6. Does small mammal prey guild affect the exposure of predators to anticoagulant rodenticides?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tosh, D.G.; McDonald, R.A.; Bearhop, S.; Lllewellyn, N.R.; Fee, S.; Sharp, E.A.; Barnett, E.A.; Shore, R.F.

    2011-01-01

    Ireland has a restricted small mammal prey guild but still includes species most likely to consume anticoagulant rodenticide (AR) baits. This may enhance secondary exposure of predators to ARs. We compared liver AR residues in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Northern Ireland (NI) with those in foxes from Great Britain which has a more diverse prey guild but similar agricultural use of ARs. Liver ARs were detected in 84% of NI foxes, more than in a comparable sample of foxes from Scotland and similar to that of suspected AR poisoned animals from England and Wales. High exposure in NI foxes is probably due to greater predation of commensal rodents and non-target species most likely to take AR baits, and may also partly reflect greater exposure to highly persistent brodifacoum and flocoumafen. High exposure is likely to enhance risk and Ireland may be a sentinel for potential effects on predator populations. - Highlights: → Exposure of a predator to anticoagulant rodenticides was compared in Britain and Ireland. → Exposure was higher in Ireland. → Differences driven by small mammal prey guilds. → Ireland a potential sentinel for predator exposure to anticoagulants. - Restriction of the small mammal prey guild is associated with enhanced exposure of predators to anticoagulant rodenticides.

  7. Molecular Survey on Brucellosis in Rodents and Shrews - Natural Reservoirs of Novel Brucella Species in Germany?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammerl, J A; Ulrich, R G; Imholt, C; Scholz, H C; Jacob, J; Kratzmann, N; Nöckler, K; Al Dahouk, S

    2017-04-01

    Brucellosis is a widespread zoonotic disease introduced from animal reservoirs to humans. In Germany, bovine and ovine/caprine brucellosis were eradicated more than a decade ago and mandatory measures in livestock have been implemented to keep the officially brucellosis-free status. In contrast, surveillance of wildlife is still challenging, and reliable data on the prevalence of brucellae in small mammal populations do not exist. To assess the epidemiology of Brucella spp. in rodents and shrews, a molecular survey was carried out. A total of 537 rodents and shrews were trapped in four federal states located throughout Germany and investigated for the presence of Brucella. Using a two-step molecular assay based on the detection of the Brucella-specific bcsp31 and IS711 sequences in tissue samples, 14.2% (n = 76) of the tested animals were positive. These originated mainly from western and south-western Germany, where preliminary analyses indicate population density-dependent Brucella prevalence in voles (Myodes glareolus) and mice (Apodemus spp.). recA typing revealed a close relationship to a potentially novel Brucella species recently isolated from red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Austria. The molecular detection of brucellae in various rodent taxa and for the first time in shrew species shows that these animals may be naturally infected or at least have a history of exposure to Brucella spp. © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  8. Black-footed ferrets and Siberian polecats as ecological surrogates and ecological equivalents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biggins, D.E.; Hanebury, L.R.; Miller, B.J.; Powell, R.A.

    2011-01-01

    Ecologically equivalent species serve similar functions in different communities, and an ecological surrogate species can be used as a substitute for an equivalent species in a community. Siberian polecats (Mustela eversmanii) and black-footed ferrets (M. nigripes) have long been considered ecological equivalents. Polecats also have been used as investigational surrogates for black-footed ferrets, yet the similarities and differences between the 2 species are poorly understood. We contrasted activity patterns of radiotagged polecats and ferrets released onto ferret habitat. Ferrets tended to be nocturnal and most active after midnight. Polecats were not highly selective for any period of the day or night. Ferrets and polecats moved most during brightly moonlit nights. The diel activity pattern of ferrets was consistent with avoidance of coyotes (Canis latrans) and diurnal birds of prey. Similarly, polecat activity was consistent with avoidance of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in their natural range. Intraguild predation (including interference competition) is inferred as a selective force influencing behaviors of these mustelines. Examination of our data suggests that black-footed ferrets and Siberian polecats might be ecological equivalents but are not perfect surrogates. Nonetheless, polecats as surrogates for black-footed ferrets have provided critical insight needed, especially related to predation, to improve the success of ferret reintroductions. ?? 2011 American Society of Mammalogists.

  9. Moonlight avoidance in gerbils reveals a sophisticated interplay among time allocation, vigilance and state-dependent foraging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotler, Burt P; Brown, Joel; Mukherjee, Shomen; Berger-Tal, Oded; Bouskila, Amos

    2010-05-22

    Foraging animals have several tools for managing the risk of predation, and the foraging games between them and their predators. Among these, time allocation is foremost, followed by vigilance and apprehension. Together, their use influences a forager's time allocation and giving-up density (GUD) in depletable resource patches. We examined Allenby's gerbils (Gerbilus andersoni allenbyi) exploiting seed resource patches in a large vivarium under varying moon phases in the presence of a red fox (Vulpes vulpes). We measured time allocated to foraging patches electronically and GUDs from seeds left behind in resource patches. From these, we estimated handling times, attack rates and quitting harvest rates (QHRs). Gerbils displayed greater vigilance (lower attack rates) at brighter moon phases (full full > new > wane). Finally, gerbils displayed higher QHRs at new and waxing moon phases. Differences across moon phases not only reflect changing time allocation and vigilance, but changes in the state of the foragers and their marginal value of energy. Early in the lunar cycle, gerbils rely on vigilance and sacrifice state to avoid risk; later they defend state at the cost of increased time allocation; finally their state can recover as safe opportunities expand. In the predator-prey foraging game, foxes may contribute to these patterns of behaviours by modulating their own activity in response to the opportunities presented in each moon phase.

  10. Bovine tuberculosis in free-ranging carnivores from Michigan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruning-Fann, C S; Schmitt, S M; Fitzgerald, S D; Fierke, J S; Friedrich, P D; Kaneene, J B; Clarke, K A; Butler, K L; Payeur, J B; Whipple, D L; Cooley, T M; Miller, J M; Muzo, D P

    2001-01-01

    During a survey of carnivores and omnivores for bovine tuberculosis conducted in Michigan (USA) since 1996, Mycobacterium bovis was cultured from lymph nodes pooled from six coyotes (Canis latrans) (four adult female, two adult male), two adult male raccoons (Procyon lotor), one adult male red fox (Vulpes vulpes), and one 1.5-yr-old male black bear (Ursus americanus). One adult, male bobcat (Felis rufus) with histologic lesions suggestive of tuberculosis was negative on culture but positive for organisms belonging to the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex when tested by polymerase chain reaction. All the tuberculous animals were taken from three adjoining counties where M. bovis is known to be endemic in the free-ranging white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) population. There were two coyotes, one raccoon, one red fox, and one bobcat infected in Alpena county. Montmorency County had two coyotes and one raccoon with M. bovis. Two coyotes and a bear were infected from Alcona County. These free-ranging carnivores/omnivores probably became infected with M. bovis through consumption of tuberculous deer. Other species included in the survey were opossum (Didelphis virginiana), gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus), and badger (Taxidea taxus); these were negative for M. bovis.

  11. Development of a Real-Time PCR for a Sensitive One-Step Coprodiagnosis Allowing both the Identification of Carnivore Feces and the Detection of Toxocara spp. and Echinococcus multilocularis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knapp, Jenny; Umhang, Gérald; Poulle, Marie-Lazarine; Millon, Laurence

    2016-05-15

    Studying the environmental occurrence of parasites of concern for humans and animals based on coprosamples is an expanding field of work in epidemiology and the ecology of health. Detecting and quantifying Toxocara spp. and Echinococcus multilocularis, two predominant zoonotic helminths circulating in European carnivores, in feces may help to better target measures for prevention. A rapid, sensitive, and one-step quantitative PCR (qPCR) allowing detection of E. multilocularis and Toxocara spp. was developed in the present study, combined with a host fecal test based on the identification of three carnivores (red fox, dog, and cat) involved in the life cycles of these parasites. A total of 68 coprosamples were collected from identified specimens from Vulpes vulpes, Canis lupus familiaris, Canis lupus, Felis silvestris catus, Meles meles, Martes foina, and Martes martes With DNA coprosamples, real-time PCR was performed in duplex with a qPCR inhibitor control specifically designed for this study. All the coprosample host identifications were confirmed by qPCR combined with sequencing, and parasites were detected and confirmed (E. multilocularis in red foxes and Toxocara cati in cats; 16% of samples presented inhibition). By combining parasite detection and quantification, the host fecal test, and a new qPCR inhibitor control, we created a technique with a high sensitivity that may considerably improve environmental studies of pathogens. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  12. Ecological and biological factors involved in the transmission of Echinococcus multilocularis in the French Ardennes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guislain, Marie-Hélène; Raoul, Francis; Giraudoux, Patrick; Terrier, Marie-Eve; Froment, Guillaume; Ferté, Hubert; Poulle, Marie-Lazarine

    2008-06-01

    In order to identify the respective importance of the ecological and biological factors involved in the transmission of Echinococcus multilocularis, we estimated grassland vole intermediate host (Microtus sp. and Arvicola terrestris) population densities, in relation to the diet of the definitive host (red fox, Vulpes vulpes) and with the prevalence of E. multilocularis in the fox population. The study was conducted in the Ardennes, north-eastern France, which is an area with a high incidence of alveolar echinococcosis. Surface index methods showed that Microtus was the most abundant intermediate host in the area. Furthermore, Microtus was present in one-third of the 144 faeces and 98 stomach content samples examined and represented more than two-thirds of the rodent occurrences. Red fox predation on Microtus was significantly correlated with Microtus relative abundance. In contrast, the relative abundance of A. terrestris was very low. This species, as well as Clethrionomys glareolus and Apodemus sp., was little consumed. E. multilocularis prevalence in foxes was determined from carcasses and reached 53% (95% confidence interval 45-61%). Intensity of infection varied from 2 to 73,380 worms per fox, with 72% of the sampled worm burden harboured by 8% of the sampled foxes. The selected explanatory variables (sex, year, age class, health and nutritional condition, and season) failed to predict prevalence rate and worm burden. The high prevalence rate in foxes indicates the possibility of intense E. multilocularis transmission, apart from periods, or in landscapes, favourable to large population outbreaks of grassland rodents.

  13. Temporal stability in the genetic structure of Sarcoptes scabiei under the host-taxon law: empirical evidences from wildlife-derived Sarcoptes mite in Asturias, Spain

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    Rossi Luca

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Implicitly, parasite molecular studies assume temporal genetic stability. In this study we tested, for the first time to our knowledge, the extent of changes in genetic diversity and structure of Sarcoptes mite populations from Pyrenean chamois (Rupicapra pyrenaica in Asturias (Spain, using one multiplex of 9 microsatellite markers and Sarcoptes samples from sympatric Pyrenean chamois, red deer (Cervus elaphus, roe deer (Capreolus capreolus and red fox (Vulpes vulpes. Results The analysis of an 11-years interval period found little change in the genetic diversity (allelic diversity, and observed and expected heterozygosity. The temporal stability in the genetic diversity was confirmed by population structure analysis, which was not significantly variable over time. Population structure analysis revealed temporal stability in the genetic diversity of Sarcoptes mite under the host-taxon law (herbivore derived- and carnivore derived-Sarcoptes mite among the sympatric wild animals from Asturias. Conclusions The confirmation of parasite temporal genetic stability is of vital interest to allow generalizations to be made, which have further implications regarding the genetic structure, epidemiology and monitoring protocols of the ubiquitous Sarcoptes mite. This could eventually be applied to other parasite species.

  14. Dispersal patterns of red foxes relative to population density

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Stephen H.; Sargeant, Alan B.

    1993-01-01

    Factors affecting red fox (Vulpes vulpes) dispersal patterns are poorly understood but warranted investigation because of the role of dispersal in rebuilding depleted populations and transmission of diseases. We examined dispersal patterns of red foxes in North Dakota based on recoveries of 363 of 854 foxes tagged as pups and relative to fox density. Foxes were recovered up to 8.6 years after tagging; 79% were trapped or shot. Straight-line distances between tagging and recovery locations ranged from 0 to 302 km. Mean recovery distances increased with age and were greater for males than females, but longest individual recovery distances were by females. Dispersal distances were not related to population density for males (P = 0.36) or females (P = 0.96). The proportion of males recovered that dispersed was inversely related to population density (r = -0.94; n = 5; P = 0.02), but not the proportion of females (r = -0.49; n = 5; P = 0.40). Dispersal directions were not uniform for either males (P = 0.003) or females (P = 0.006); littermates tended to disperse in similar directions (P = 0.09). A 4-lane interstate highway altered dispersal directions (P = 0.001). Dispersal is a strong innate behavior of red foxes (especially males) that results in many individuals of both sexes traveling far from natal areas. Because dispersal distance was unaffected by fox density, populations can be rebuilt and diseases transmitted long distances regardless of fox abundance.

  15. Examination of D. immitis presence in foxes in Serbia

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    Gavrilović Pavle

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Dirofilariosis is a parasitic disease that usually affects dogs, but it can occur in other carnivore species. Since the disease appears endemically in dogs in some parts of Serbia, the aim of our investigation was to determine whether dirofilariosis exists in wild animals. The study included a total of 150 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes, 30 hunted foxes per region of South Banat, Raska, Rasina, Morava and Zlatibor were examined. After the corpses of foxes were autopsied, the heart and blood vessels were examined macroscopically for the evidence of adult forms of D. immitis. The presence of the agent was found in four foxes from the territory of three municipalities of South Banat: Kovin, Alibunar and Opovo, representing 13.33% of the total number of examined foxes in this region. None of the 120 autopsied foxes from four districts of central Serbia was found to have dirofilaria. The results obtained in investigation lead to conclusion that dirofilariosis exists as a parasitic disease in red foxes in South Banat.

  16. Predator selection of prairie landscape features and its relation to duck nest success

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, M.L.; Clark, W.R.; Sovada, M.A.; Horn, D.J.; Koford, Rolf R.; Greenwood, R.J.

    2003-01-01

    Mammalian predation is a major cause of mortality for breeding waterfowl in the U.S. Northern Great Plains, and yet we know little about the selection of prairie habitats by predators or how this influences nest success in grassland nesting cover. We selected 2 41.4-km2 study areas in both 1996 and 1997 in North Dakota, USA, with contrasting compositions of perennial grassland. A study area contained either 15-20% perennial grassland (Low Grassland Composition [LGC]) or 45-55% perennial grassland (High Grassland Composition [HGC]). We used radiotelemetry to investigate the selection of 9 landscape cover types by red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis), while simultaneously recording duck nest success within planted cover. The cover types included the edge and core areas of planted cover, wetland edges within planted cover or surrounded by cropland, pastureland, hayland, cropland, roads, and miscellaneous cover types. Striped skunks selected wetland edges surrounded by agriculture over all other cover types in LGC landscapes (P-values for all pairwise comparisons were foraging efficiency in the interior areas of planted cover and contributed to higher nest success in HGC landscapes. Our observations of predator cover-type selection not only support the restoration and management of large blocks of grassland but also indicate the influence of alternative cover types for mitigating nest predation in the Prairie Pothole Region.

  17. The relationships between morphological features and social signalling behaviours in juvenile dogs: the effect of early experience with dogs of different morphotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerswell, Keven J; Butler, Kym L; Bennett, Pauleen; Hemsworth, Paul H

    2010-09-01

    Research on dog communication has tended to focus on breed differences and the use of lupine signals by the domestic dog. However, the relationship between morphological change and communication has received little empirical study. The link between morphology and behavioural selection in a canid undergoing domestication, the silver fox (Vulpes vulpes), has been well documented. Therefore, it is reasonable to propose a similar link may be present in another canid species that has undergone domestication, namely the domestic dog (Canis familiaris). Inter-morphotype interactions (587 interactions) of 115 juvenile dogs aged 8-20 weeks from over 30 breeds and various hybrids, enrolled in veterinary "Puppy Socialisation Classes", were video taped. Each signal that could be sent, was recorded, and the sending and the intended receiving dog identified. The frequencies with which a dog sent each category of signal, and the frequency with which each category of signal was directed at the dog (elicited), were calculated. The relationship between these frequencies and the morphology of the dog was then studied using generalized linear models. Overall morphology of the dog was not related to either the sending or eliciting of any social signaling behaviours (social signals). However, snout length was related to both the signals sent by a dog, and especially the signals that were directed to a dog (elicited). Relationships to eye cover and coat length were also found. Possible explanations for the results are discussed, and avenues for further research are indicated. Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Anthropogenic influences on macro-level mammal occupancy in the Appalachian Trail corridor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter L Erb

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic effects on wildlife are typically assessed at the local level, but it is often difficult to extrapolate to larger spatial extents. Macro-level occupancy studies are one way to assess impacts of multiple disturbance factors that might vary over different geographic extents. Here we assess anthropogenic effects on occupancy and distribution for several mammal species within the Appalachian Trail (AT, a forest corridor that extends across a broad section of the eastern United States. Utilizing camera traps and a large volunteer network of citizen scientists, we were able to sample 447 sites along a 1024 km section of the AT to assess the effects of available habitat, hunting, recreation, and roads on eight mammal species. Occupancy modeling revealed the importance of available forest to all species except opossums (Didelphis virginiana and coyotes (Canis latrans. Hunting on adjoining lands was the second strongest predictor of occupancy for three mammal species, negatively influencing black bears (Ursus americanus and bobcats (Lynx rufus, while positively influencing raccoons (Procyon lotor. Modeling also indicated an avoidance of high trail use areas by bears and proclivity towards high use areas by red fox (Vulpes vulpes. Roads had the lowest predictive power on species occupancy within the corridor and were only significant for deer. The occupancy models stress the importance of compounding direct and indirect anthropogenic influences operating at the regional level. Scientists and managers should consider these human impacts and their potential combined influence on wildlife persistence when assessing optimal habitat or considering management actions.

  19. Endangered Species Program Naval Petroleum Reserves in California

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-02-01

    The Naval Petroleum Reserves in California (NPRC) are operated by the US Department of Energy (DOE). Construction and development activities, which are conducted by DOE at Naval Petroleum Reserve number-sign 1 (NPR-1) to comply with the Naval Petroleum Reserves Production Act of 1976 (Public Law 94-258), potentially threaten the continued existence of four federally-listed endangered species: the San Joaquin kit fox, (Vulpes macrotis mutica), blunt-nosed leopard lizard (Gambelia silus), giant kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ingens), and Tipton kangaroo rat (Dipodomys nitratoides nitratoides). All four are protected under the Endangered Species Act of 1973. The major objective of the Endangered Species Program on NPR-1 and NPR-2 is to provide DOE with the scientific expertise and continuity of programs necessary for continued compliance with the Endangered Species Act. The specific objective of this report is to summarize progress and results of the Endangered Species Program made during Fiscal Year 1990 (FY90)

  20. Spatiotemporal distribution of rabies in Arctic foxes in Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Raundrup, Katrine; Moshøj, Charlotte Margaret; Wennerberg, Sanne

    2015-01-01

    The temporal occurrence, spatial distribution, spread, and prevalence of rabies in Arctic foxes, Vulpes lagopus, in Greenland were studied using historical observations from 1969 to 2011 and survey data collected in the winters 1992 and 1993. Regionally, the prevalence of rabies ranged between 0...... and 7.1 %. Wavelet analysis was used to identify periodicities in the abundance of rabies cases based on the historical observations. No general length of the cyclic interval of rabies occurrences in Greenland could be demonstrated. The frequency of outbreaks was found to be variable but can be grouped...... as short (less than 5 years), medium (5–10 years), and long (more than 10 years). Moreover, rabies outbreaks in neighboring regions were found to be more closely correlated compared to regions further apart. In West Greenland, the temporal outbreaks of rabies were found to occur along a north...

  1. Information transfer among widely spaced individuals: latrines as a basis for communication networks in the swift fox

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Darden, Safi-Kirstine; Steffensen, Lise K.; Dabelsteen, Torben

    2008-01-01

    In species where individuals are widely spaced instantaneous signals cannot readily form the basis of communication networks, that is several individuals within signalling range of each other. However, markings, signals that remain in the environment after the signaller has left, may fulfil...... this role. In this study, we have investigated the possible function of swift fox, Vulpes velox, latrines, collections of scat, urine and possibly other secretions, in a communication network context. We found that latrines had higher frequencies of occurrence inside the core (defined as the 50% kernel...... contour) of a pair's home-range when compared with outside the core and in areas of a pair's home-range that overlapped with neighbouring individuals when compared with those areas that did not overlap with neighbours. These were also the two areas where latrines were most likely to reoccur in the next...

  2. Is It Necessary Managing Carnivores to Reverse the Decline of Endangered Prey Species? Insights from a Removal Experiment of Mesocarnivores to Benefit Demographic Parameters of the Pyrenean Capercaillie.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubén Moreno-Opo

    Full Text Available Mesopredator control has long been used to alleviate the effect of elevated predation pressure on vulnerable, threatened or valuable species. However, the convenience of using mesopredator controls is technically questionable and scientifically-sound research is therefore required to evaluate the impact of predation on prey case by case. In this study we evaluated the effect of the alteration of terrestrial mesopredator dynamics on the demographic parameters of a relict capercaillie Tetrao urogallus aquitanicus population currently in decline for which the impact of predation has not previously been assessed. We used a six-year mesocarnivore removal experiment (2008-2013 together with seven-years of previous demographic information on capercaillies (1999-2007 within a before-after control-impact (BACI design to evaluate the effect of mesocarnivore removal on capercaillie demographic parameters and on spatial behaviour of the most frequent predatory mesocarnivores of the capercaillie (Martes spp. and red fox Vulpes vulpes. Using a dynamic site-occupancy approach, the reduction of mesocarnivore population levels as a result of removal was clear for marten species, mainly during key months for capercaillie reproduction, but not for the red fox. Our results show that the breeding success of capercaillies was enhanced in areas where carnivores were removed and was inversely related to the occupation level of the studied mesocarnivores, although being only significant for Martes spp. Moreover, capercaillie predation rates were lower and adult survival seemingly higher in treatment during the removal phase. Cost-effective, long-term management interventions to ensure the recovery of this threatened capercaillie population are discussed in the light of the results. At our study area, the decision for implementing predation management should be included within a broader long-term conservation perspective. In this regard, a more feasible and sustainable

  3. A serological survey of infectious disease in Yellowstone National Park's canid community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almberg, Emily S; Mech, L David; Smith, Douglas W; Sheldon, Jennifer W; Crabtree, Robert L

    2009-09-16

    Gray wolves (Canis lupus) were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park (YNP) after a >70 year absence, and as part of recovery efforts, the population has been closely monitored. In 1999 and 2005, pup survival was significantly reduced, suggestive of disease outbreaks. We analyzed sympatric wolf, coyote (Canis latrans), and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) serologic data from YNP, spanning 1991-2007, to identify long-term patterns of pathogen exposure, identify associated risk factors, and examine evidence for disease-induced mortality among wolves for which there were survival data. We found high, constant exposure to canine parvovirus (wolf seroprevalence: 100%; coyote: 94%), canine adenovirus-1 (wolf pups [0.5-0.9 yr]: 91%, adults [>or=1 yr]: 96%; coyote juveniles [0.5-1.5 yrs]: 18%, adults [>or=1.6 yrs]: 83%), and canine herpesvirus (wolf: 87%; coyote juveniles: 23%, young adults [1.6-4.9 yrs]: 51%, old adults [>or=5 yrs]: 87%) suggesting that these pathogens were enzootic within YNP wolves and coyotes. An average of 50% of wolves exhibited exposure to the protozoan parasite, Neospora caninum, although individuals' odds of exposure tended to increase with age and was temporally variable. Wolf, coyote, and fox exposure to canine distemper virus (CDV) was temporally variable, with evidence for distinct multi-host outbreaks in 1999 and 2005, and perhaps a smaller, isolated outbreak among wolves in the interior of YNP in 2002. The years of high wolf-pup mortality in 1999 and 2005 in the northern region of the park were correlated with peaks in CDV seroprevalence, suggesting that CDV contributed to the observed mortality. Of the pathogens we examined, none appear to jeopardize the long-term population of canids in YNP. However, CDV appears capable of causing short-term population declines. Additional information on how and where CDV is maintained and the frequency with which future epizootics might be expected might be useful for future management of the Northern Rocky

  4. Assessing Genetic Structure in Common but Ecologically Distinct Carnivores: The Stone Marten and Red Fox.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mafalda P Basto

    Full Text Available The identification of populations and spatial genetic patterns is important for ecological and conservation research, and spatially explicit individual-based methods have been recognised as powerful tools in this context. Mammalian carnivores are intrinsically vulnerable to habitat fragmentation but not much is known about the genetic consequences of fragmentation in common species. Stone martens (Martes foina and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes share a widespread Palearctic distribution and are considered habitat generalists, but in the Iberian Peninsula stone martens tend to occur in higher quality habitats. We compared their genetic structure in Portugal to see if they are consistent with their differences in ecological plasticity, and also to illustrate an approach to explicitly delineate the spatial boundaries of consistently identified genetic units. We analysed microsatellite data using spatial Bayesian clustering methods (implemented in the software BAPS, GENELAND and TESS, a progressive partitioning approach and a multivariate technique (Spatial Principal Components Analysis-sPCA. Three consensus Bayesian clusters were identified for the stone marten. No consensus was achieved for the red fox, but one cluster was the most probable clustering solution. Progressive partitioning and sPCA suggested additional clusters in the stone marten but they were not consistent among methods and were geographically incoherent. The contrasting results between the two species are consistent with the literature reporting stricter ecological requirements of the stone marten in the Iberian Peninsula. The observed genetic structure in the stone marten may have been influenced by landscape features, particularly rivers, and fragmentation. We suggest that an approach based on a consensus clustering solution of multiple different algorithms may provide an objective and effective means to delineate potential boundaries of inferred subpopulations. sPCA and progressive

  5. Assessing Genetic Structure in Common but Ecologically Distinct Carnivores: The Stone Marten and Red Fox

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basto, Mafalda P.; Santos-Reis, Margarida; Simões, Luciana; Grilo, Clara; Cardoso, Luís; Cortes, Helder; Bruford, Michael W.; Fernandes, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    The identification of populations and spatial genetic patterns is important for ecological and conservation research, and spatially explicit individual-based methods have been recognised as powerful tools in this context. Mammalian carnivores are intrinsically vulnerable to habitat fragmentation but not much is known about the genetic consequences of fragmentation in common species. Stone martens (Martes foina) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) share a widespread Palearctic distribution and are considered habitat generalists, but in the Iberian Peninsula stone martens tend to occur in higher quality habitats. We compared their genetic structure in Portugal to see if they are consistent with their differences in ecological plasticity, and also to illustrate an approach to explicitly delineate the spatial boundaries of consistently identified genetic units. We analysed microsatellite data using spatial Bayesian clustering methods (implemented in the software BAPS, GENELAND and TESS), a progressive partitioning approach and a multivariate technique (Spatial Principal Components Analysis-sPCA). Three consensus Bayesian clusters were identified for the stone marten. No consensus was achieved for the red fox, but one cluster was the most probable clustering solution. Progressive partitioning and sPCA suggested additional clusters in the stone marten but they were not consistent among methods and were geographically incoherent. The contrasting results between the two species are consistent with the literature reporting stricter ecological requirements of the stone marten in the Iberian Peninsula. The observed genetic structure in the stone marten may have been influenced by landscape features, particularly rivers, and fragmentation. We suggest that an approach based on a consensus clustering solution of multiple different algorithms may provide an objective and effective means to delineate potential boundaries of inferred subpopulations. sPCA and progressive partitioning

  6. Rabies and canine distemper virus epidemics in the red fox population of northern Italy (2006-2010.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre Nouvellet

    Full Text Available Since 2006 the red fox (Vulpes vulpes population in north-eastern Italy has experienced an epidemic of canine distemper virus (CDV. Additionally, in 2008, after a thirteen-year absence from Italy, fox rabies was re-introduced in the Udine province at the national border with Slovenia. Disease intervention strategies are being developed and implemented to control rabies in this area and minimise risk to human health. Here we present empirical data and the epidemiological picture relating to these epidemics in the period 2006-2010. Of important significance for epidemiological studies of wild animals, basic mathematical models are developed to exploit information collected from the surveillance program on dead and/or living animals in order to assess the incidence of infection. These models are also used to estimate the rate of transmission of both diseases and the rate of vaccination, while correcting for a bias in early collection of CDV samples. We found that the rate of rabies transmission was roughly twice that of CDV, with an estimated effective contact between infected and susceptible fox leading to a new infection occurring once every 3 days for rabies, and once a week for CDV. We also inferred that during the early stage of the CDV epidemic, a bias in the monitoring protocol resulted in a positive sample being almost 10 times more likely to be collected than a negative sample. We estimated the rate of intake of oral vaccine at 0.006 per day, allowing us to estimate that roughly 68% of the foxes would be immunised. This was confirmed by field observations. Finally we discuss the implications for the eco-epidemiological dynamics of both epidemics in relation to control measures.

  7. Pathogenesis of canine distemper virus in experimentally infected raccoon dogs, foxes, and minks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Jianjun; Shi, Ning; Sun, Yangang; Martella, Vito; Nikolin, Veljko; Zhu, Chunsheng; Zhang, Hailing; Hu, Bo; Bai, Xue; Yan, Xijun

    2015-10-01

    Canine distemper virus (CDV) infects a broad range of carnivores and causes a highly contagious disease with severe immunosuppression. The disease severity markedly varies in different species. To investigate the pathogenesis of CDV in raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), fox (Vulpes vulpes) and mink (Neovison vison) species, three groups of CDV sero-negative animals were infected with CDV strain LN(10)1. This CDV strain belongs to the Asia-1 genotype, which is epidemiologically predominant in carnivores in China. CDV infection provoked marked differences in virulence in the three species that were studied. Raccoon dogs developed fever, severe conjunctivitis, and pathological lesions, with 100% (5/5) mortality and with high viral RNA loads in organs within 15 days post infection (dpi). In infected foxes, the onset of the disease was delayed, with 40% (2/5) mortality by 21 dpi. Infected minks developed only mild clinical signs and pathological lesions, and mortality was not observed. Raccoon dogs and foxes showed more severe immune suppression (lymphopenia, decreased lymphocyte proliferation, viremia and low-level virus neutralizing antibodies) than minks. We also observed a distinct pattern of cytokine mRNA transcripts at different times after infection. Decreased IFN-γ and IL-4 mRNA responses were evident in the animals with fatal disease, while up-regulation of these cytokines was observed in the animals surviving the infection. Increased TNF-α response was detected in animals with mild or severe clinical signs. Based on the results, we could distinguish three different patterns of disease after experimental CDV infection, e.g. a mild form in minks, a moderate form in foxes and a severe disease in raccoon dogs. The observed differences in susceptibility to CDV could be related to distinct host cytokine profiles. Comparative evaluation of CDV pathogenesis in various animal species is pivotal to generate models suitable for the evaluation of CDV

  8. Rapid urbanization of red foxes in Estonia: distribution, behaviour, attacks on domestic animals, and health-risks related to zoonotic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plumer, Liivi; Davison, John; Saarma, Urmas

    2014-01-01

    Urban areas are becoming increasingly important for wildlife as diminishing natural habitats no longer represent a suitable environment for many species. Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are nowadays common in many cities worldwide, and in recent years they have colonized urban areas in Estonia. We used a public web-based questionnaire approach to evaluate the distribution and behaviour of Estonian urban foxes, to detect related problems and to assess health risks to humans and domestic animals. In total, 1205 responses were collected throughout the country. Foxes have colonized the majority of Estonian towns (33 out of 47) in a relatively short period of time, and have already established breeding dens in several towns. Despite their recent arrival, the behaviour of Estonian urban foxes is similar to that reported in longer-established urban fox populations: they are mostly active during night-time, often visit city centres and some also have dens in such locations. Certain characteristics of urban foxes serve as a basis for conflict with humans: foxes have entered houses and attacked domestic animals, killing cats and poultry. About 8% of reported foxes exhibited symptoms of sarcoptic mange, a disease that also infects domestic animals, especially dogs. The proportion of mange-infected foxes was higher in large urban areas. In addition to mange, a substantial fraction of red foxes in Estonia are known to be infected with the life-threatening tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis, the causative agent of alveolar echinococcosis. Therefore, urban foxes may represent a source of serious infectious disease for pets and humans.

  9. An invasive vector of zoonotic disease sustained by anthropogenic resources: the raccoon dog in northern Europe.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karmen Süld

    Full Text Available The raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides is an introduced species in Europe with a continually expanding range. Since the species is capable of affecting local ecosystems and is a vector for a number of severe zoonotic diseases, it is important to understand its food habits. Raccoon dog diet was studied in Estonia by examining the contents of 223 stomach samples collected during the coldest period of the year, August to March, in 2010-2012. The most frequently consumed food categories were anthropogenic plants (e.g. cereals, fruits; FO = 56.1% and carrion (e.g. carcasses of artiodactyls and carnivores; FO = 48.4%. Carrion was also the only food category that was consumed significantly more frequently by raccoon dogs exhibiting symptoms of sarcoptic mange than by uninfected animals. Small mammals, which represent intermediate hosts for the zoonotic tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis, were more commonly recorded in samples also containing anthropogenic plants than expected by chance. Comparison of raccoon dog and red fox (Vulpes vulpes diet in Estonia revealed higher overlap than found elsewhere in Europe, with 'carrion' and 'anthropogenic plants' making up the bulk of both species' diet; however, raccoon dogs were more omnivorous than red foxes. Our results suggest that while the use of most food categories reflects the phenology of natural food sources, 'anthropogenic plants' and 'carrion' provide an essential resource for raccoon dogs during the coldest period of the year, with the latter resource especially important for individuals infected with sarcoptic mange. Since both of these food categories and small mammals are often found at supplementary feeding sites for wild boar (Sus scrofa, this game management practice may facilitate high densities of mesocarnivores and promote the spread of some severe zoonotic diseases, including alveolar echinococcosis, trichinellosis, rabies and sarcoptic mange.

  10. An invasive vector of zoonotic disease sustained by anthropogenic resources: the raccoon dog in northern Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Süld, Karmen; Valdmann, Harri; Laurimaa, Leidi; Soe, Egle; Davison, John; Saarma, Urmas

    2014-01-01

    The raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) is an introduced species in Europe with a continually expanding range. Since the species is capable of affecting local ecosystems and is a vector for a number of severe zoonotic diseases, it is important to understand its food habits. Raccoon dog diet was studied in Estonia by examining the contents of 223 stomach samples collected during the coldest period of the year, August to March, in 2010-2012. The most frequently consumed food categories were anthropogenic plants (e.g. cereals, fruits; FO = 56.1%) and carrion (e.g. carcasses of artiodactyls and carnivores; FO = 48.4%). Carrion was also the only food category that was consumed significantly more frequently by raccoon dogs exhibiting symptoms of sarcoptic mange than by uninfected animals. Small mammals, which represent intermediate hosts for the zoonotic tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis, were more commonly recorded in samples also containing anthropogenic plants than expected by chance. Comparison of raccoon dog and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) diet in Estonia revealed higher overlap than found elsewhere in Europe, with 'carrion' and 'anthropogenic plants' making up the bulk of both species' diet; however, raccoon dogs were more omnivorous than red foxes. Our results suggest that while the use of most food categories reflects the phenology of natural food sources, 'anthropogenic plants' and 'carrion' provide an essential resource for raccoon dogs during the coldest period of the year, with the latter resource especially important for individuals infected with sarcoptic mange. Since both of these food categories and small mammals are often found at supplementary feeding sites for wild boar (Sus scrofa), this game management practice may facilitate high densities of mesocarnivores and promote the spread of some severe zoonotic diseases, including alveolar echinococcosis, trichinellosis, rabies and sarcoptic mange.

  11. First European interlaboratory comparison of tetracycline and age determination with red fox teeth following oral rabies vaccination programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robardet, Emmanuelle; Demerson, Jean-Michel; Andrieu, Sabrina; Cliquet, Florence

    2012-10-01

    The first European interlaboratory comparison of tetracycline and age determination with red fox (Vulpes vulpes) tooth samples was organized by the European Union Reference Laboratory for rabies. Performance and procedures implemented by member states were compared. These techniques are widely used to monitor bait uptake in European oral rabies vaccination campaigns. A panel of five red fox half-mandibles comprising one weak positive juvenile sample, two positive adult samples, one negative juvenile sample, and one negative adult sample were sent, along with a technical questionnaire, to 12 laboratories participating on a voluntary basis. The results of only three laboratories (25%) were 100% correct. False-negative results were more frequently seen in weak positive juvenile samples (58%) but were infrequent in positive adult samples (4%), probably due to differences in the ease of reading the two groups of teeth. Four laboratories (44%) had correct results for age determination on all samples. Ages were incorrectly identified in both adult and juvenile samples, with 11 and 17% of discordant results, respectively. Analysis of the technical questionnaires in parallel with test results suggested that all laboratories cutting mandible sections between the canine and first premolar obtained false results. All the laboratories using longitudinal rather than transverse sections and those not using a mounting medium also produced false results. Section thickness appeared to affect the results; no mistakes were found in laboratories using sections <150 μm thick. Factors having a potential impact on the success of laboratories were discussed, and recommendations proposed. Such interlaboratory trials underline the importance of using standardized procedures for biomarker detection in oral rabies vaccination campaigns. Several changes can be made to improve analysis quality and increase the comparability of bait uptake frequencies among member states.

  12. Animal interactions and the emergence of territoriality.

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    Luca Giuggioli

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Inferring the role of interactions in territorial animals relies upon accurate recordings of the behaviour of neighbouring individuals. Such accurate recordings are rarely available from field studies. As a result, quantification of the interaction mechanisms has often relied upon theoretical approaches, which hitherto have been limited to comparisons of macroscopic population-level predictions from un-tested interaction models. Here we present a quantitative framework that possesses a microscopic testable hypothesis on the mechanism of conspecific avoidance mediated by olfactory signals in the form of scent marks. We find that the key parameters controlling territoriality are two: the average territory size, i.e. the inverse of the population density, and the time span during which animal scent marks remain active. Since permanent monitoring of a territorial border is not possible, scent marks need to function in the temporary absence of the resident. As chemical signals carried by the scent only last a finite amount of time, each animal needs to revisit territorial boundaries frequently and refresh its own scent marks in order to deter possible intruders. The size of the territory an animal can maintain is thus proportional to the time necessary for an animal to move between its own territorial boundaries. By using an agent-based model to take into account the possible spatio-temporal movement trajectories of individual animals, we show that the emerging territories are the result of a form of collective animal movement where, different to shoaling, flocking or herding, interactions are highly heterogeneous in space and time. The applicability of our hypothesis has been tested with a prototypical territorial animal, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes.

  13. Combining information from surveys of several species to estimate the probability of freedom from Echinococcus multilocularis in Sweden, Finland and mainland Norway

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    Hjertqvist Marika

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The fox tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis has foxes and other canids as definitive host and rodents as intermediate hosts. However, most mammals can be accidental intermediate hosts and the larval stage may cause serious disease in humans. The parasite has never been detected in Sweden, Finland and mainland Norway. All three countries require currently an anthelminthic treatment for dogs and cats prior to entry in order to prevent introduction of the parasite. Documentation of freedom from E. multilocularis is necessary for justification of the present import requirements. Methods The probability that Sweden, Finland and mainland Norway were free from E. multilocularis and the sensitivity of the surveillance systems were estimated using scenario trees. Surveillance data from five animal species were included in the study: red fox (Vulpes vulpes, raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides, domestic pig, wild boar (Sus scrofa and voles and lemmings (Arvicolinae. Results The cumulative probability of freedom from EM in December 2009 was high in all three countries, 0.98 (95% CI 0.96-0.99 in Finland and 0.99 (0.97-0.995 in Sweden and 0.98 (0.95-0.99 in Norway. Conclusions Results from the model confirm that there is a high probability that in 2009 the countries were free from E. multilocularis. The sensitivity analyses showed that the choice of the design prevalences in different infected populations was influential. Therefore more knowledge on expected prevalences for E. multilocularis in infected populations of different species is desirable to reduce residual uncertainty of the results.

  14. Interspecific and geographic variation in the diets of sympatric carnivores: dingoes/wild dogs and red foxes in south-eastern Australia.

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    Naomi E Davis

    Full Text Available Dingoes/wild dogs (Canis dingo/familiaris and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes are widespread carnivores in southern Australia and are controlled to reduce predation on domestic livestock and native fauna. We used the occurrence of food items in 5875 dingo/wild dog scats and 11,569 fox scats to evaluate interspecific and geographic differences in the diets of these species within nine regions of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. The nine regions encompass a wide variety of ecosystems. Diet overlap between dingoes/wild dogs and foxes varied among regions, from low to near complete overlap. The diet of foxes was broader than dingoes/wild dogs in all but three regions, with the former usually containing more insects, reptiles and plant material. By contrast, dingoes/wild dogs more regularly consumed larger mammals, supporting the hypothesis that niche partitioning occurs on the basis of mammalian prey size. The key mammalian food items for dingoes/wild dogs across all regions were black wallaby (Wallabia bicolor, brushtail possum species (Trichosurus spp., common wombat (Vombatus ursinus, sambar deer (Rusa unicolor, cattle (Bos taurus and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus. The key mammalian food items for foxes across all regions were European rabbit, sheep (Ovis aries and house mouse (Mus musculus. Foxes consumed 6.1 times the number of individuals of threatened Critical Weight Range native mammal species than did dingoes/wild dogs. The occurrence of intraguild predation was asymmetrical; dingoes/wild dogs consumed greater biomass of the smaller fox. The substantial geographic variation in diet indicates that dingoes/wild dogs and foxes alter their diet in accordance with changing food availability. We provide checklists of taxa recorded in the diets of dingoes/wild dogs and foxes as a resource for managers and researchers wishing to understand the potential impacts of policy and management decisions on dingoes/wild dogs, foxes and the food

  15. Chromosomal mapping of canine-derived BAC clones to the red fox and American mink genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kukekova, Anna V; Vorobieva, Nadegda V; Beklemisheva, Violetta R; Johnson, Jennifer L; Temnykh, Svetlana V; Yudkin, Dmitry V; Trut, Lyudmila N; Andre, Catherine; Galibert, Francis; Aguirre, Gustavo D; Acland, Gregory M; Graphodatsky, Alexander S

    2009-01-01

    High-quality sequencing of the dog (Canis lupus familiaris) genome has enabled enormous progress in genetic mapping of canine phenotypic variation. The red fox (Vulpes vulpes), another canid species, also exhibits a wide range of variation in coat color, morphology, and behavior. Although the fox genome has not yet been sequenced, canine genomic resources have been used to construct a meiotic linkage map of the red fox genome and begin genetic mapping in foxes. However, a more detailed gene-specific comparative map between the dog and fox genomes is required to establish gene order within homologous regions of dog and fox chromosomes and to refine breakpoints between homologous chromosomes of the 2 species. In the current study, we tested whether canine-derived gene-containing bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones can be routinely used to build a gene-specific map of the red fox genome. Forty canine BAC clones were mapped to the red fox genome by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Each clone was uniquely assigned to a single fox chromosome, and the locations of 38 clones agreed with cytogenetic predictions. These results clearly demonstrate the utility of FISH mapping for construction of a whole-genome gene-specific map of the red fox. The further possibility of using canine BAC clones to map genes in the American mink (Mustela vison) genome was also explored. Much lower success was obtained for this more distantly related farm-bred species, although a few BAC clones were mapped to the predicted chromosomal locations.

  16. Assessing Genetic Structure in Common but Ecologically Distinct Carnivores: The Stone Marten and Red Fox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basto, Mafalda P; Santos-Reis, Margarida; Simões, Luciana; Grilo, Clara; Cardoso, Luís; Cortes, Helder; Bruford, Michael W; Fernandes, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    The identification of populations and spatial genetic patterns is important for ecological and conservation research, and spatially explicit individual-based methods have been recognised as powerful tools in this context. Mammalian carnivores are intrinsically vulnerable to habitat fragmentation but not much is known about the genetic consequences of fragmentation in common species. Stone martens (Martes foina) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) share a widespread Palearctic distribution and are considered habitat generalists, but in the Iberian Peninsula stone martens tend to occur in higher quality habitats. We compared their genetic structure in Portugal to see if they are consistent with their differences in ecological plasticity, and also to illustrate an approach to explicitly delineate the spatial boundaries of consistently identified genetic units. We analysed microsatellite data using spatial Bayesian clustering methods (implemented in the software BAPS, GENELAND and TESS), a progressive partitioning approach and a multivariate technique (Spatial Principal Components Analysis-sPCA). Three consensus Bayesian clusters were identified for the stone marten. No consensus was achieved for the red fox, but one cluster was the most probable clustering solution. Progressive partitioning and sPCA suggested additional clusters in the stone marten but they were not consistent among methods and were geographically incoherent. The contrasting results between the two species are consistent with the literature reporting stricter ecological requirements of the stone marten in the Iberian Peninsula. The observed genetic structure in the stone marten may have been influenced by landscape features, particularly rivers, and fragmentation. We suggest that an approach based on a consensus clustering solution of multiple different algorithms may provide an objective and effective means to delineate potential boundaries of inferred subpopulations. sPCA and progressive partitioning

  17. Trends in anecdotal fox sightings in Tasmania accounted for by psychological factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marks, Clive A; Clark, Malcolm; Obendorf, David; Hall, Graham P; Soares, Inês; Pereira, Filipe

    2017-12-01

    There has been little evaluation of anecdotal sightings as a means to confirm new incursions of invasive species. This paper explores the potential for equivocal information communicated by the media to account for patterns of anecdotal reports. In 2001, it was widely reported that red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) had been deliberately released in the island state of Tasmania (Australia), although this claim was later revealed to be baseless. Regardless, by 2013 a total of 3153 anecdotal fox sightings had been reported by members of the public, which implied their distribution was wide. For each month in 2001-2003, we defined a monthly media index (MMI) of fox-related media coverage, an index of their relative seasonal abundance (abundance), and a factor denoting claims of fox evidence (claimed evidence) regardless of its evidentiary quality. We fitted a generalized linear model with Poisson error for monthly totals of anecdotal sightings with factors of year and claimed evidence and covariates of MMI, abundance, and hours of darkness. The collective effect of psychological factors (MMI, claimed evidence, and year) relative to biophysical factors (photoperiod and abundance) was highly significant (χ 2 = 122.1, df = 6, p fox media from 2001 to 2010 was strongly associated with the yearly tally of anecdotal sightings (p = 0.018). The odds ratio of sightings ranked as reliable by the fox eradication program in any year decreased exponentially at a rate of 0.00643 as the total number of sightings increased (p < 0.0001) and was indicative of an observer-expectancy bias. Our results suggest anecdotal sightings are highly susceptible to cognitive biases and when used to qualify and quantify species presence can contribute to flawed risk assessments. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  18. Rabies and canine distemper virus epidemics in the red fox population of northern Italy (2006-2010).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nouvellet, Pierre; Donnelly, Christl A; De Nardi, Marco; Rhodes, Chris J; De Benedictis, Paola; Citterio, Carlo; Obber, Federica; Lorenzetto, Monica; Pozza, Manuela Dalla; Cauchemez, Simon; Cattoli, Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    Since 2006 the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) population in north-eastern Italy has experienced an epidemic of canine distemper virus (CDV). Additionally, in 2008, after a thirteen-year absence from Italy, fox rabies was re-introduced in the Udine province at the national border with Slovenia. Disease intervention strategies are being developed and implemented to control rabies in this area and minimise risk to human health. Here we present empirical data and the epidemiological picture relating to these epidemics in the period 2006-2010. Of important significance for epidemiological studies of wild animals, basic mathematical models are developed to exploit information collected from the surveillance program on dead and/or living animals in order to assess the incidence of infection. These models are also used to estimate the rate of transmission of both diseases and the rate of vaccination, while correcting for a bias in early collection of CDV samples. We found that the rate of rabies transmission was roughly twice that of CDV, with an estimated effective contact between infected and susceptible fox leading to a new infection occurring once every 3 days for rabies, and once a week for CDV. We also inferred that during the early stage of the CDV epidemic, a bias in the monitoring protocol resulted in a positive sample being almost 10 times more likely to be collected than a negative sample. We estimated the rate of intake of oral vaccine at 0.006 per day, allowing us to estimate that roughly 68% of the foxes would be immunised. This was confirmed by field observations. Finally we discuss the implications for the eco-epidemiological dynamics of both epidemics in relation to control measures.

  19. Stress triangle: do introduced predators exert indirect costs on native predators and prey?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer R Anson

    Full Text Available Non-consumptive effects of predators on each other and on prey populations often exceed the effects of direct predation. These effects can arise from fear responses elevating glucocorticoid (GC hormone levels (predator stress hypothesis or from increased vigilance that reduces foraging efficiency and body condition (predator sensitive foraging hypothesis; both responses can lead to immunosuppression and increased parasite loads. Non-consumptive effects of invasive predators have been little studied, even though their direct impacts on local species are usually greater than those of their native counterparts. To address this issue, we explored the non-consumptive effects of the invasive red fox Vulpes vulpes on two native species in eastern Australia: a reptilian predator, the lace monitor Varanus varius and a marsupial, the ringtail possum Pseudocheirus peregrinus. In particular, we tested predictions derived from the above two hypotheses by comparing the basal glucocorticoid levels, foraging behaviour, body condition and haemoparasite loads of both native species in areas with and without fox suppression. Lace monitors showed no GC response or differences in haemoparasite loads but were more likely to trade safety for higher food rewards, and had higher body condition, in areas of fox suppression than in areas where foxes remained abundant. In contrast, ringtails showed no physiological or behavioural differences between fox-suppressed and control areas. Predator sensitive foraging is a non-consumptive cost for lace monitors in the presence of the fox and most likely represents a response to competition. The ringtail's lack of response to the fox potentially represents complete naiveté or strong and rapid selection to the invasive predator. We suggest evolutionary responses are often overlooked in interactions between native and introduced species, but must be incorporated if we are to understand the suite of forces that shape community

  20. Y-Chromosome Markers for the Red Fox.

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    Rando, Halie M; Stutchman, Jeremy T; Bastounes, Estelle R; Johnson, Jennifer L; Driscoll, Carlos A; Barr, Christina S; Trut, Lyudmila N; Sacks, Benjamin N; Kukekova, Anna V

    2017-09-01

    The de novo assembly of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) genome has facilitated the development of genomic tools for the species. Efforts to identify the population history of red foxes in North America have previously been limited by a lack of information about the red fox Y-chromosome sequence. However, a megabase of red fox Y-chromosome sequence was recently identified over 2 scaffolds in the reference genome. Here, these scaffolds were scanned for repeated motifs, revealing 194 likely microsatellites. Twenty-three of these loci were selected for primer development and, after testing, produced a panel of 11 novel markers that were analyzed alongside 2 markers previously developed for the red fox from dog Y-chromosome sequence. The markers were genotyped in 76 male red foxes from 4 populations: 7 foxes from Newfoundland (eastern Canada), 12 from Maryland (eastern United States), and 9 from the island of Great Britain, as well as 48 foxes of known North American origin maintained on an experimental farm in Novosibirsk, Russia. The full marker panel revealed 22 haplotypes among these red foxes, whereas the 2 previously known markers alone would have identified only 10 haplotypes. The haplotypes from the 4 populations clustered primarily by continent, but unidirectional gene flow from Great Britain and farm populations may influence haplotype diversity in the Maryland population. The development of new markers has increased the resolution at which red fox Y-chromosome diversity can be analyzed and provides insight into the contribution of males to red fox population diversity and patterns of phylogeography. © The American Genetic Association 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. First identification of Echinococcus multilocularis in rodent intermediate hosts in Sweden

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    Andrea L. Miller

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Echinococcus multilocularis is a zoonotic tapeworm with a sylvatic lifecycle and an expanding range in Europe. Monitoring efforts following its first identification in 2011 in Sweden have focused on the parasite's definitive host, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes. However, identifying rodent intermediate hosts is important to recognize opportunities for parasite transmission. During 2013–2015, livers from a total of 1566 rodents from four regions in Sweden were examined for E. multilocularis metacestode lesions. Species identity of suspect parasite lesions was confirmed by PCR and sequencing. E. multilocularis positive lesions >6 mm in diameter were also examined histologically. One Microtus agrestis out of 187 (0.5%, 95%CI: 0–2.9%, 8/439 (1.8%, 95%CI: 0.8–3.6% Arvicola amphibius, 0/655 (0%, 95%CI: 0–0.6% Myodes glareolus, and 0/285 (0%, 95%CI: 0–1.3% Apodemus spp. contained E. multilocularis metacestode lesions. Presence of protoscoleces was confirmed in the infected M. agrestis and in three of eight infected A. amphibius. Six of the nine positive rodents were captured from the same field. This is the first report of E. multilocularis in intermediate hosts in Sweden. The cluster of positive rodents in one field shows that local parasite prevalence can be high in Sweden despite overall low national prevalence in foxes (<0.1%. The presence of protoscoleces in infected M. agrestis and A. amphibius indicate these species can serve as competent intermediate hosts in Sweden. However, their relative importance for E. multilocularis transmission in the Swedish environment is not yet possible to assess. In contrast, the negative findings in all M. glareolus and Apodemus spp. suggest that these species are of no importance.

  2. Landscape genetics of the nonnative red fox of California.

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    Sacks, Benjamin N; Brazeal, Jennifer L; Lewis, Jeffrey C

    2016-07-01

    Invasive mammalian carnivores contribute disproportionately to declines in global biodiversity. In California, nonnative red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) have significantly impacted endangered ground-nesting birds and native canids. These foxes derive primarily from captive-reared animals associated with the fur-farming industry. Over the past five decades, the cumulative area occupied by nonnative red fox increased to cover much of central and southern California. We used a landscape-genetic approach involving mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences and 13 microsatellites of 402 nonnative red foxes removed in predator control programs to investigate source populations, contemporary connectivity, and metapopulation dynamics. Both markers indicated high population structuring consistent with origins from multiple introductions and low subsequent gene flow. Landscape-genetic modeling indicated that population connectivity was especially low among coastal sampling sites surrounded by mountainous wildlands but somewhat higher through topographically flat, urban and agricultural landscapes. The genetic composition of populations tended to be stable for multiple generations, indicating a degree of demographic resilience to predator removal programs. However, in two sites where intensive predator control reduced fox abundance, we observed increases in immigration, suggesting potential for recolonization to counter eradication attempts. These findings, along with continued genetic monitoring, can help guide localized management of foxes by identifying points of introductions and routes of spread and evaluating the relative importance of reproduction and immigration in maintaining populations. More generally, the study illustrates the utility of a landscape-genetic approach for understanding invasion dynamics and metapopulation structure of one of the world's most destructive invasive mammals, the red fox.

  3. Determinants of tick-borne encephalitis in counties of southern Germany, 2001-2008

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    Kiffner Christian

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE virus can cause severe symptoms in humans. The incidence of this vector-borne pathogen in humans is characterised by spatial and temporal heterogeneity. To explain the variation in reported human TBE cases per county in southern Germany, we designed a time-lagged, spatially-explicit model that incorporates ecological, environmental, and climatic factors. Results We fitted a logistic regression model to the annual counts of reported human TBE cases in each of 140 counties over an eight year period. The model controlled for spatial autocorrelation and unexplained temporal variation. The occurrence of human TBE was found to be positively correlated with the proportions of broad-leafed, mixed and coniferous forest cover. An index of forest fragmentation was negatively correlated with TBE incidence, suggesting that infection risk is higher in fragmented landscapes. The results contradict previous evidence regarding the relevance of a specific spring-time temperature regime for TBE epidemiology. Hunting bag data of roe deer (Capreolus capreolus in the previous year was positively correlated with human TBE incidence, and hunting bag density of red fox (Vulpes vulpes and red deer (Cervus elaphus in the previous year were negatively correlated with human TBE incidence. Conclusions Our approach suggests that a combination of landscape and climatic variables as well as host-species dynamics influence TBE infection risk in humans. The model was unable to explain some of the temporal variation, specifically the high counts in 2005 and 2006. Factors such as the exposure of humans to infected ticks and forest rodent population dynamics, for which we have no data, are likely to be explanatory factors. Such information is required to identify the determinants of TBE more reliably. Having records of TBE infection sites at a finer scale would also be necessary.

  4. First molecular evidence of Hepatozoon canis infection in red foxes and golden jackals from Hungary.

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    Farkas, Róbert; Solymosi, Norbert; Takács, Nóra; Hornyák, Ákos; Hornok, Sándor; Nachum-Biala, Yaarit; Baneth, Gad

    2014-07-02

    Recently, Hepatozoon canis infection has been detected among shepherd, hunting and stray dogs in the southern part of Hungary, which is considered to be free of Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato and close to the border with Croatia. The aim of this study was to acquire information on the possibility that red foxes and/or golden jackals could play a role in the appearance and spread of H. canis in Hungary. A conventional PCR was used to amplify a 666 bp long fragment of the Hepatozoon 18S rRNA gene from blood samples collected from 334 foxes shot in 231 locations in 16 counties and 15 golden jackals shot in 9 locations in two southwestern counties close to Croatia. A second PCR assay was performed in some of the samples positive by the first PCR to amplify a larger segment (approximately 1500 bp) of the 18S rRNA gene of Hepatozoon spp. for further phylogenetic analysis. Hepatozoon infection was detected in canids shot in 30 locations and 9 counties. Altogether 26 foxes (8.0%, 95% CI: 5-11%) and 9 jackals (60%, 95% CI: 33-81%) were PCR positive. Hepatozoon canis sequences were obtained from 12 foxes and 7 jackals. DNA sequences from 16 animals were 99-100% similar to H. canis from Croatian foxes or dogs while two of the sequences were 99% similar to an Italian fox. Half (13/26) of the infected red foxes and all golden jackals were shot in the two southwestern counties. This is the first report on molecular evidence of H. canis in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and golden jackals (Canis aureus) from Hungary, which is considered free from the tick vector of H. canis, R. sanguineus. Although no R. sanguineus sensu lato had been found on infected or non-infected wild canids, the detection of authochnous canine hepatozoonosis in Hungary might imply that the range of R. sanguineus sensu lato has reached this country.

  5. Evidence, models, conservation programs and limits to management

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    Nichols, J.D.

    2012-01-01

    Walsh et al. (2012) emphasized the importance of obtaining evidence to assess the effects of management actions on state variables relevant to objectives of conservation programs. They focused on malleefowl Leipoa ocellata, ground-dwelling Australian megapodes listed as vulnerable. They noted that although fox Vulpes vulpes baiting is the main management action used in malleefowl conservation throughout southern Australia, evidence of the effectiveness of this action is limited and currently debated. Walsh et al. (2012) then used data from 64 sites monitored for malleefowl and foxes over 23 years to assess key functional relationships relevant to fox control as a conservation action for malleefowl. In one set of analyses, Walsh et al. (2012) focused on two relationships: fox baiting investment versus fox presence, and fox presence versus malleefowl population size and rate of population change. Results led to the counterintuitive conclusion that increases in investments in fox control produced slight decreases in malleefowl population size and growth. In a second set of analyses, Walsh et al. (2012) directly assessed the relationship between investment in fox baiting and malleefowl population size and rate of population change. This set of analyses showed no significant relationship between investment in fox population control and malleefowl population growth. Both sets of analyses benefited from the incorporation of key environmental covariates hypothesized to influence these management relationships. Walsh et al. (2012) concluded that "in most situations, malleefowl conservation did not effectively benefit from fox baiting at current levels of investment." In this commentary, I discuss the work of Walsh et al. (2012) using the conceptual framework of structured decision making (SDM). In doing so, I accept their analytic results and associated conclusions as accurate and discuss basic ideas about evidence, conservation and limits to management.

  6. Red fox spatial characteristics in relation to waterfowl predation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, A.B.

    1972-01-01

    Radio-equipped red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) on the Cedar Creek area in Minnesota were spatially distributed, with individual families occupying well defined, nonoverlapping, contiguous territories. Territory boundaries often conformed to natural physical boundaries and appeared to be maintained through some nonaggressive behavior mechanism. Individual foxes traveled extensively throughout the family territory each night. Fox territories appeared to range from approximately 1 to 3 square miles in size, dependent largely on population density. Red foxes used a sequence of dens to rear their pups, and the amount and location of food remains at individual dens changed as the pups matured. The denning season was divided into pre-emergence, confined-use, and dispersed-use periods of 4 to 5 weeks each. Remains of adult waterfowl were collected at rearing dens on six townships in three ecologically different regions of eastern North Dakota. Remains of 172 adult dabbling ducks and 16 adult American coots (Fulica americana) were found at 35 dens. No remains from diving ducks were found. The number of adult ducks per den averaged 1.6, 5.9, and 10.2 for paired townships in regions with relatively low, moderate and high duck populations, respectively. Eighty-four percent of the ducks were females. The species and sex composition of ducks found at dens during early and late sampling periods reflected the nesting chronology of prairie dabbling ducks. Occupied rearing dens were focal points of red fox travel, and the locations of dens may have had considerable influence on predation. Thirty-five of 38 dens found on the six township study areas were on pastured or idle lands. The distribution of rearing dens on the Sand Lake and Arrowwood national wildlife refuges suggested that, on these areas, fox dens were concentrated because of the topography and land-use practices.

  7. Rapid urbanization of red foxes in Estonia: distribution, behaviour, attacks on domestic animals, and health-risks related to zoonotic diseases.

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    Liivi Plumer

    Full Text Available Urban areas are becoming increasingly important for wildlife as diminishing natural habitats no longer represent a suitable environment for many species. Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes are nowadays common in many cities worldwide, and in recent years they have colonized urban areas in Estonia. We used a public web-based questionnaire approach to evaluate the distribution and behaviour of Estonian urban foxes, to detect related problems and to assess health risks to humans and domestic animals. In total, 1205 responses were collected throughout the country. Foxes have colonized the majority of Estonian towns (33 out of 47 in a relatively short period of time, and have already established breeding dens in several towns. Despite their recent arrival, the behaviour of Estonian urban foxes is similar to that reported in longer-established urban fox populations: they are mostly active during night-time, often visit city centres and some also have dens in such locations. Certain characteristics of urban foxes serve as a basis for conflict with humans: foxes have entered houses and attacked domestic animals, killing cats and poultry. About 8% of reported foxes exhibited symptoms of sarcoptic mange, a disease that also infects domestic animals, especially dogs. The proportion of mange-infected foxes was higher in large urban areas. In addition to mange, a substantial fraction of red foxes in Estonia are known to be infected with the life-threatening tapeworm Echinococcus multilocularis, the causative agent of alveolar echinococcosis. Therefore, urban foxes may represent a source of serious infectious disease for pets and humans.

  8. The concentration of fear: mice's behavioural and physiological stress responses to different degrees of predation risk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-González, Beatriz; Planillo, Aimara; Navarro-Castilla, Álvaro; Barja, Isabel

    2018-02-01

    Predation is an unavoidable and dangerous fact in the lifetime of prey animals and some sign of the proximity of a predator may be enough to trigger a response in the prey. We investigated whether different degrees of predation risk by red foxes ( Vulpes vulpes) evoke behavioural and physiological stress responses in wood mice ( Apodemus sylvaticus) . We examined the variation in mice responses due to individual factors (sex and reproductive status) and related them to the concentration of the volatile compounds from fox faeces over time. In our experiment, we introduced predation cues into four plots, each subjected to a different concentration treatment (0, 10, 50 and 100% concentration of fresh faeces of red fox), based on the following outline: initial odourless phase 0, phase1 in which predation treatment was renewed daily, and phase 2 in which we renewed the treatment only on the first day. Wood mice were live trapped during all three phases and the physiological response was measured non-invasively by analysing faecal corticosterone metabolites (FCM) in freshly collected faeces. Data were analysed by Generalized Linear Mixed Models. Overall, males were trapped less often than females, and reproductively active individuals from both sexes avoided traps more than non-reproductively active individuals, especially in medium- and high- concentration plots. Variations in FCM concentrations were explained by plot, the interaction between plot and treatment phase, and the interaction between the treatment phase and the reproductive status. During phase 1, we detected a significant rise in FCM levels that increased with predator faecal odour concentration. Additionally, reproductively active individuals showed a strong physiological response during both phases 1 and 2 in all plots, except the control plot. Our results indicated that wood mice are able to discriminate different degrees of predation risk, which allows them to trigger gradual changes in their

  9. Environmental determinants of the spatial distribution of Angiostrongylus vasorum, Crenosoma vulpis and Eucoleus aerophilus in Hungary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolnai, Z; Széll, Z; Sréter, T

    2015-01-30

    Angiostrongylus vasorum, Crenosoma vulpis and Eucoleus aerophilus (syn. Capillaria aerophila) are the most important lungworm species infecting wild and domesticated canids in Europe. To investigate the spatial distribution of these parasites and the factors influencing their circulation in the fox populations, 937 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) were tested for lungworm infection in Hungary. The prevalence of A. vasorum, C. vulpis and E. aerophilus infection was high (17.9, 24.6 and 61.7%). The distribution pattern of infection in foxes and the relationship of this pattern with landscape and climate was analyzed by geographic information system. Based on the analysis, the annual precipitation was the major determinant of the spatial distribution of A. vasorum and C. vulpis and E. aerophilus. Nevertheless, the mean annual temperature also influenced the distribution of A. vasorum and E. aerophilus. The positive relationship with annual precipitation and the negative relationship with mean annual temperature can be attributed to the sensitivity of larvae, eggs and intermediate hosts (snails and slugs) of lungworms for desiccation. Based on the highly clumped distribution of A. vasorum and C. vulpis, the indirect life cycle (larvae, slugs and snails) of these parasites seems to be particularly sensitive for environmental effects. The distribution of E. aerophilus was considerably less clumped indicating a lower sensitivity of the direct life cycle (eggs) of this parasite for environmental factors. Based on these results, lungworm infections in canids including dogs can be expected mainly in relatively wet and cool areas. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Environmental determinants of the spatial distribution of Trichinella britovi and Trichinella spiralis in Hungary.

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    Tolnai, Z; Széll, Z; Marucci, G; Pozio, E; Sréter, T

    2014-08-29

    Trichinella spiralis and Trichinella britovi are the two most common species of the genus Trichinella persisting in the European wildlife. To investigate the spatial distribution of these Trichinella spp. and the factors influencing their circulation in Hungary, 3304 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and 0.29 million wild boars (Sus scrofa) were tested for Trichinella sp. infection in Hungary from 2006 to 2013. Trichinella spp. larvae from 68 (2.06%) foxes and 44 (0.015%) wild boars were identified by a multiplex PCR as T. britovi or T. spiralis. The locality of origin of foxes and wild boars were recorded in a geographic information system database. There was no correlation between environmental parameters in the home range of foxes and wild boars and the T. spiralis larval counts, but there was a positive correlation between the boundary zone of Hungary and T. spiralis infection (Pdistribution of T. spiralis in the Hungarian wildlife is determined by the transborder transmission of the parasite from the surrounding endemic countries. Multiple regression analysis was performed with environmental parameter values and T. britovi larval counts. Based on the statistical analysis, non-agricultural areas (forests, scrubs, herbaceous vegetation and pastures) and the mean annual temperature (Pdeterminants of the spatial distribution of T. britovi in Hungary. The positive relationship with non-agricultural areas can be explained by the generalist feeding behaviour including scavenging of foxes in these areas. The negative relationship with the mean annual temperature can be attributed to the slower decomposition of wildlife carcasses favouring a longer survival of T. britovi larvae in the host carrion and to the increase of scavenging of foxes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Environmental determinants of the spatial distribution of Echinococcus multilocularis in Hungary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolnai, Z; Széll, Z; Sréter, T

    2013-12-06

    Human alveolar echinococcosis, caused by the metacestode stage of Echinococcus multilocularis, is one of the most pathogenic zoonoses in the temperate and arctic region of the Northern Hemisphere. To investigate the spatial distribution of E. multilocularis and the factors influencing this distribution in the recently identified endemic area of Hungary, 1612 red fox (Vulpes vulpes) carcasses were randomly collected from the whole Hungarian territory from November 2008 to February 2009 and from November 2012 to February 2013. The topographic positions of foxes were recorded in geographic information system database. The digitized home ranges and the vector data were used to calculate the altitude, mean annual temperature, annual precipitation, soil water retention, soil permeability, areas of land cover types and the presence and buffer zone of permanent water bodies within the fox territories. The intestinal mucosa from all the foxes was tested by sedimentation and counting technique. Multiple regression analysis was performed with environmental parameter values and E. multilocularis counts. The spatial distribution of the parasite was clumped. Based on statistical analysis, mean annual temperature and annual precipitation were the major determinants of the spatial distribution of E. multilocularis in Hungary. It can be attributed to the sensitivity of E. multilocularis eggs to high temperatures and desiccation. Although spreading and emergence of the parasite was observed in Hungary before 2009, the prevalence and intensity of infection did not change significantly between the two collection periods. It can be explained by the considerably lower annual precipitation before the second collection period. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Environmental determinants of the spatial distribution of Alaria alata in Hungary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Széll, Z; Tolnai, Z; Sréter, T

    2013-11-15

    Alaria alata is a potential zoonotic parasite, which is widely distributed in Eurasia. To assess the risk of human infection, it is important to know the spatial distribution pattern of the parasite and factors influencing this pattern. To investigate these relationships, 1612 red fox (Vulpes vulpes) carcasses were randomly collected from the whole Hungarian territory, and the intestines were examined by sedimentation and counting technique. The spatial distribution of the parasite was highly clumped. The topographic positions where the foxes had been shot and the intensity of infections were recorded in geographic information system database. Digitized home ranges of infected and uninfected foxes were analysed on the background of geographic vector data of altitude, land cover types, permanent waters, mean annual temperature, annual precipitation and soil permeability. Multiple regression analysis was performed with environmental parameter values and A. alata scores. Based on the statistical analysis, lack of permanent waters, mean annual temperature, annual precipitation and soil permeability were the major determinants of the spatial distribution of A. alata. It can be explained by the use of biotopes by the intermediate hosts. The lack of permanent waters results in the use of temporary waters by the second intermediate hosts, frogs. The higher temperature, the lower precipitation and the higher soil permeability lead to earlier desiccation of temporary waters, and tadpoles and frogs infected with mesocercariae can be more easily predated by the final hosts (e.g., red foxes). Moreover, temporary waters are more easily contaminated with the faeces of the final hosts containing eggs than permanent waters. Therefore, high infection rate with A. alata can be expected mainly in lowland areas, where the hydrogeography of permanent waters is less complex, the precipitation is lower, the mean temperature and the soil permeability are higher than in highland areas

  13. Environmental determinants of the spatial distribution of Mesocestoides spp. and sensitivity of flotation method for the diagnosis of mesocestoidosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Széll, Z; Tolnai, Z; Sréter, T

    2015-09-15

    Mesocestoides spp. are zoonotic cestodes of wild and domesticated carnivores. Although the adult stages are relatively harmless intestinal parasites, the metacestode stages (tetrathyridia) can be responsible for life-threatening peritonitis and pleuritis in several species including dogs, cats, non-human primates and probably man. The aim of the present study was to reveal the spatial distribution pattern of Mesocestoides spp. in the most important final hosts, red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), to analyse the relationship of these patterns with landscape and climate by geographical information systems and to evaluate faecal flotation method for the detection of infection in the final host. Fox carcasses, representing 0.5% of the total fox population were randomly selected out of all the foxes of Hungary. The intestinal tract was examined by sedimentation and counting technique. The sensitivity of the flotation method was evaluated by the testing of the faecal samples of 180 foxes infected with Mesocestoides spp. The prevalence of infection was high in foxes (45.8%; 95% CI=41.0-50.6%), and the parasite was detected in all areas of Hungary. The high prevalence of the parasite in foxes suggests that the infection might also be common in outdoor dogs and cats. Mesocestoides infection could not be detected in any of the foxes by flotation method indicating that the sensitivity of the method is less than 0.6%. Therefore, almost all canine and feline infections remain undetected in the veterinary practice. Based on the statistical analysis, the altitude was the only determinant of the spatial distribution of Mesocestoides spp. indicating that infections in carnivores including dogs and cats can be expected mainly in midland regions (150-750 m above sea level). It might be attributed to the altitude-dependent species richness and abundance of the intermediate and final hosts of the parasite. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Snapshot of Viral Infections in Wild Carnivores Reveals Ubiquity of Parvovirus and Susceptibility of Egyptian Mongoose to Feline Panleukopenia Virus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Margarida D.; Henriques, Ana Margarida; Barros, Sílvia Carla; Fagulha, Teresa; Mendonça, Paula; Carvalho, Paulo; Monteiro, Madalena; Fevereiro, Miguel; Basto, Mafalda P.; Rosalino, Luís Miguel; Barros, Tânia; Bandeira, Victor; Fonseca, Carlos; Cunha, Mónica V.

    2013-01-01

    The exposure of wild carnivores to viral pathogens, with emphasis on parvovirus (CPV/FPLV), was assessed based on the molecular screening of tissue samples from 128 hunted or accidentally road-killed animals collected in Portugal from 2008 to 2011, including Egyptian mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon, n = 99), red fox (Vulpes vulpes, n = 19), stone marten (Martes foina, n = 3), common genet (Genetta genetta, n = 3) and Eurasian badger (Meles meles, n = 4). A high prevalence of parvovirus DNA (63%) was detected among all surveyed species, particularly in mongooses (58%) and red foxes (79%), along with the presence of CPV/FPLV circulating antibodies that were identified in 90% of a subset of parvovirus-DNA positive samples. Most specimens were extensively autolysed, restricting macro and microscopic investigations for lesion evaluation. Whenever possible to examine, signs of active disease were not present, supporting the hypothesis that the parvovirus vp2 gene fragments detected by real-time PCR possibly correspond to viral DNA reminiscent from previous infections. The molecular characterization of viruses, based on the analysis of the complete or partial sequence of the vp2 gene, allowed typifying three viral strains of mongoose and four red fox’s as feline panleukopenia virus (FPLV) and one stone marten’s as newCPV-2b type. The genetic similarity found between the FPLV viruses from free-ranging and captive wild species originated in Portugal and publicly available comparable sequences, suggests a closer genetic relatedness among FPLV circulating in Portugal. Although the clinical and epidemiological significance of infection could not be established, this study evidences that exposure of sympatric wild carnivores to parvovirus is common and geographically widespread, potentially carrying a risk to susceptible populations at the wildlife-domestic interface and to threatened species, such as the wildcat (Felis silvestris) and the critically

  15. Intestinal helminths of golden jackals and red foxes from Tunisia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahmar, Samia; Boufana, Belgees; Ben Boubaker, Sarra; Landolsi, Faouzi

    2014-08-29

    Forty wild canids including 31 golden jackals (Canis aureus Linné, 1758) and 9 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes Linné, 1758) collected between 2008 and 2011 in the northeast, northwest and center of Tunisia were necropsied and examined for intestinal helminth parasites. All jackals and foxes were found infected with a prevalence rate of 95% for cestodes, 82.5% for nematodes and 7.5% for acanthocephalans. A total of twelve helminth species were recorded in red foxes: cestodes, Dipylidium caninum (55.6%), Diplopylidium noelleri (55.6%), Mesocestoïdes lineatus (55.6%), Mesocestoïdes litteratus (33%), Mesocestoïdes corti (22%); nematodes, Ancylostoma caninum (11%), Uncinaria stenocephala (44%), Spirura rytipleurites (11%), Trichuris vulpis (33%), Pterygodermatites affinis (67%), Oxynema linstowi (33%) and the acanthocephalan Macracanthorhynchus hirudinaceus (22%). The fifteen recovered helminth species in jackals were Echinococcus granulosus (9.7%), D. caninum (16%), D. noelleri (16%), M. lineatus (74%), M. litteratus (23%), M. corti (12.9%), Taenia pisiformis (3.2%), Taenia spp. (19%), Toxocara canis (16%), Toxascaris leonina (6.5%), A. caninum (9.7%), U. stenocephala (68%), P. affinis (6.5%), O. linstowi (3.2%) and Macracanthorhynchus hirudinaceus (3.2%). This is the first report on the presence of P. affinis, D. noelleri and O. linstowi in Tunisia. E. granulosus was found in young jackals, aged less than 4 years old, with a higher abundance in females (8.9 worms). M. lineatus presented the highest mean intensity of 231.86 and 108.8 tapeworms respectively in jackals and foxes. Canids from the northwest region had the highest prevalence (77.5%) and highest intensity (243.7) of helminth species compared to those from the northeast and central areas. U. stenocephala and O. linstowi had the highest mean intensity for nematodes in both jackals and foxes at 14.3 and 88 worms respectively. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Effects of habitat composition on the use of resources by the red fox in a semi arid environment of North Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Arte, Graziella L.; Leonardi, Giovanni

    2005-09-01

    The red fox Vulpes vulpes is considered an opportunistic predator able to avoid prey shortages by exploiting a wide range of available food resources. However, as predicted by the Resources Dispersion Hypothesis (RDH), the distribution of other key resources such as suitable areas for dens can affect fox populations. Furthermore, in insularity conditions, resources are spatially limited and their availability is greatly influenced by territory sizes and the feeding habits of predators. In this paper we report the spatial use and foraging habits of foxes in three habitats (grassland, cultivation and suburban) of a sub-arid island off north Africa in relation to habitat composition and food availability. We found that diet composition in a gross sense did not differ significantly among habitats, with insects comprising > 48% and fruits 25% of the total prey items. Grasslands offered temporary clumped food resources (e.g. birds) that induced foxes to increase their territory sizes and to enlarge their diet range during prey shortages. Inversely, in cultivated and suburban areas, the main prey (insects) were more evenly distributed, especially in olive groves which constitute the most extensive form of cultivation on the island. In large areas covered by olive trees, the high availability of Coleoptera spp. significantly reduced core areas used by foxes and also distances among dens. Palm groves were patchy on the island but contained high densities of Orthoptera spp. and date fruits which represent alternative food sources. Thus, these patches are attractive foraging places, but a modification of the perimeter of fox territories was necessary for their exploitation. Our study confirmed that in this arid environment, habitat composition per se affected a generalist predator less than the dispersion of its main prey. In addition, the patchy distribution of resources can assume a role in the spacing and feeding behaviours of foxes only in relation to clumped alternative

  17. Experimentally derived δ¹³C and δ¹⁵N discrimination factors for gray wolves and the impact of prior information in Bayesian mixing models.

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    Jonathan J Derbridge

    Full Text Available Stable isotope analysis of diet has become a common tool in conservation research. However, the multiple sources of uncertainty inherent in this analysis framework involve consequences that have not been thoroughly addressed. Uncertainty arises from the choice of trophic discrimination factors, and for Bayesian stable isotope mixing models (SIMMs, the specification of prior information; the combined effect of these aspects has not been explicitly tested. We used a captive feeding study of gray wolves (Canis lupus to determine the first experimentally-derived trophic discrimination factors of C and N for this large carnivore of broad conservation interest. Using the estimated diet in our controlled system and data from a published study on wild wolves and their prey in Montana, USA, we then investigated the simultaneous effect of discrimination factors and prior information on diet reconstruction with Bayesian SIMMs. Discrimination factors for gray wolves and their prey were 1.97‰ for δ13C and 3.04‰ for δ15N. Specifying wolf discrimination factors, as opposed to the commonly used red fox (Vulpes vulpes factors, made little practical difference to estimates of wolf diet, but prior information had a strong effect on bias, precision, and accuracy of posterior estimates. Without specifying prior information in our Bayesian SIMM, it was not possible to produce SIMM posteriors statistically similar to the estimated diet in our controlled study or the diet of wild wolves. Our study demonstrates the critical effect of prior information on estimates of animal diets using Bayesian SIMMs, and suggests species-specific trophic discrimination factors are of secondary importance. When using stable isotope analysis to inform conservation decisions researchers should understand the limits of their data. It may be difficult to obtain useful information from SIMMs if informative priors are omitted and species-specific discrimination factors are unavailable.

  18. Rabies and Canine Distemper Virus Epidemics in the Red Fox Population of Northern Italy (2006–2010)

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    De Benedictis, Paola; Citterio, Carlo; Obber, Federica; Lorenzetto, Monica; Pozza, Manuela Dalla; Cauchemez, Simon; Cattoli, Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    Since 2006 the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) population in north-eastern Italy has experienced an epidemic of canine distemper virus (CDV). Additionally, in 2008, after a thirteen-year absence from Italy, fox rabies was re-introduced in the Udine province at the national border with Slovenia. Disease intervention strategies are being developed and implemented to control rabies in this area and minimise risk to human health. Here we present empirical data and the epidemiological picture relating to these epidemics in the period 2006–2010. Of important significance for epidemiological studies of wild animals, basic mathematical models are developed to exploit information collected from the surveillance program on dead and/or living animals in order to assess the incidence of infection. These models are also used to estimate the rate of transmission of both diseases and the rate of vaccination, while correcting for a bias in early collection of CDV samples. We found that the rate of rabies transmission was roughly twice that of CDV, with an estimated effective contact between infected and susceptible fox leading to a new infection occurring once every 3 days for rabies, and once a week for CDV. We also inferred that during the early stage of the CDV epidemic, a bias in the monitoring protocol resulted in a positive sample being almost 10 times more likely to be collected than a negative sample. We estimated the rate of intake of oral vaccine at 0.006 per day, allowing us to estimate that roughly 68% of the foxes would be immunised. This was confirmed by field observations. Finally we discuss the implications for the eco-epidemiological dynamics of both epidemics in relation to control measures. PMID:23630599

  19. Rabies in the Baltic States: Decoding a Process of Control and Elimination

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    Robardet, Emmanuelle; Picard-Meyer, Evelyne; Dobroštana, Marianna; Jaceviciene, Ingrida; Mähar, Katrin; Muižniece, Zita; Pridotkas, Gediminas; Masiulis, Marius; Niin, Enel; Olševskis, Edvīns; Cliquet, Florence

    2016-01-01

    Rabies is a fatal zoonosis that still causes nearly 70, 000 human deaths every year. In Europe, the oral rabies vaccination (ORV) of red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) was developed in the late 1970s and has demonstrated its effectiveness in the eradication of the disease in Western and some Central European countries. Following the accession of the three Baltic countries—Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania—to the European Union in 2004, subsequent financial support has allowed the implementation of regular ORV campaigns since 2005–2006. This paper reviews ten years of surveillance efforts and ORV campaigns in these countries resulting in the near eradication of the disease. The various factors that may have influenced the results of vaccination monitoring were assessed using generalized linear models (GLMs) on bait uptake and on herd immunity. As shown in previous studies, juveniles had lower bait uptake level than adults. For the first time, raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides) were shown to have significantly lower bait uptake proportion compared with red foxes. This result suggests potentially altered ORV effectiveness in this invasive species compared to the red foxes. An extensive phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that the North-East European (NEE) rabies phylogroup is endemic in all three Baltic countries. Although successive oral vaccination campaigns have substantially reduced the number of detected rabies cases, sporadic detection of the C lineage (European part of Russian phylogroup) underlines the risk of reintroduction via westward spread from bordering countries. Vaccine induced cases were also reported for the first time in non-target species (Martes martes and Meles meles). PMID:26849358

  20. 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.

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    David M Forsyth

    Full Text Available 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.

  1. Territorial dynamics and stable home range formation for central place foragers.

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    Jonathan R Potts

    Full Text Available Uncovering the mechanisms behind territory formation is a fundamental problem in behavioural ecology. The broad nature of the underlying conspecific avoidance processes are well documented across a wide range of taxa. Scent marking in particular is common to a large range of terrestrial mammals and is known to be fundamental for communication. However, despite its importance, exact quantification of the time-scales over which scent cues and messages persist remains elusive. Recent work by the present authors has begun to shed light on this problem by modelling animals as random walkers with scent-mediated interaction processes. Territories emerge as dynamic objects that continually change shape and slowly move without settling to a fixed location. As a consequence, the utilisation distribution of such an animal results in a slowly increasing home range, as shown for urban foxes (Vulpes vulpes. For certain other species, however, home ranges reach a stable state. The present work shows that stable home ranges arise when, in addition to scent-mediated conspecific avoidance, each animal moves as a central place forager. That is, the animal's movement has a random aspect but is also biased towards a fixed location, such as a den or nest site. Dynamic territories emerge but the probability distribution of the territory border locations reaches a steady state, causing stable home ranges to emerge from the territorial dynamics. Approximate analytic expressions for the animal's probability density function are derived. A programme is given for using these expressions to quantify both the strength of the animal's movement bias towards the central place and the time-scale over which scent messages persist. Comparisons are made with previous theoretical work modelling central place foragers with conspecific avoidance. Some insights into the mechanisms behind allometric scaling laws of animal space use are also given.

  2. Meerkats (Suricata suricatta, a new definitive host of the canid nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum

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    Nina Gillis-Germitsch

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Angiostronglyus vasorum is a cardiopulmonary nematode infecting mainly canids such as dogs (Canis familiaris and foxes (Vulpes vulpes. Natural infections have also been reported in mustelids and red pandas (Ailurus fulgens fulgens. We report the occurrence of natural A. vasorum infections in a group of captive meerkats (Suricata suricatta, housed at a university facility in Switzerland. A. vasorum first-stage larvae (L1 were initially identified in a pooled faecal sample. Individual samples, investigated with the Baermann-Wetzel technique, revealed that 41% (7/17 of the meerkats were infected, with ranges of 2–125 L1/g faeces. PCR and sequencing of part of the ITS-2 region resulted in 100% identity with A. vasorum. Infected animals did not show clinical signs. One meerkat died two days after diagnosis. Upon necropsy one adult specimen was recovered; histological examination of the lung revealed granulomatous pneumonia caused by A. vasorum larvae and eggs as well as intima and media hyperplasia and isolated arteriosclerosis of larger lung vessels. However, the cause of death was a spleen rupture with associated blood loss. All meerkats were topically treated with 10 mg imidacloprid/2.5 mg moxidectin per animal, after which they became negative in all follow up faecal examinations. Potential intermediate (gastropods and paratenic hosts (birds were collected from within or outside the meerkats enclosure. Gastropods were examined by PCR and bird samples by digestion. Four out of 193 (2.1% gastropod samples were positive for A. vasorum, whereas none of the bird samples were positive. Meerkats, belonging to the Herpestidae, therefore are suitable definitive hosts for A. vasorum, with production and excretion of live L1. Meerkats kept in captivity in areas where A. vasorum is endemic and with potential contact to intermediate hosts are at risk of infection. Regular faecal examinations including Baermann-Wetzel technique should be considered

  3. Mesopredator Management: Effects of Red Fox Control on the Abundance, Diet and Use of Space by Feral Cats.

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    Molsher, Robyn; Newsome, Alan E; Newsome, Thomas M; Dickman, Christopher R

    2017-01-01

    Apex predators are subject to lethal control in many parts of the world to minimize their impacts on human industries and livelihoods. Diverse communities of smaller predators-mesopredators-often remain after apex predator removal. Despite concern that these mesopredators may be 'released' in the absence of the apex predator and exert negative effects on each other and on co-occurring prey, these interactions have been little studied. Here, we investigate the potential effects of competition and intraguild predation between red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and feral cats (Felis catus) in south-eastern Australia where the apex predator, the dingo (Canis dingo), has been extirpated by humans. We predicted that the larger fox would dominate the cat in encounters, and used a fox-removal experiment to assess whether foxes affect cat abundance, diet, home-range and habitat use. Our results provide little indication that intraguild predation occurred or that cats responded numerically to the fox removal, but suggest that the fox affects some aspects of cat resource use. In particular, where foxes were removed cats increased their consumption of invertebrates and carrion, decreased their home range size and foraged more in open habitats. Fox control takes place over large areas of Australia to protect threatened native species and agricultural interests. Our results suggest that fox control programmes could lead to changes in the way that cats interact with co-occurring prey, and that some prey may become more vulnerable to cat predation in open habitats after foxes have been removed. Moreover, with intensive and more sustained fox control it is possible that cats could respond numerically and alter their behaviour in different ways to those documented herein. Such outcomes need to be considered when estimating the indirect impacts of fox control. We conclude that novel approaches are urgently required to control invasive mesopredators at the same time, especially in areas where

  4. Occurrence of tongue worm, Linguatula cf. serrata (Pentastomida: Linguatulidae in wild canids and livestock in south-eastern Australia

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    Shokoofeh Shamsi

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Pentastomids are obligate zoonotic arthropod parasites utilising canids and vulpids as their definitive hosts and several herbivorous species as their intermediate hosts. Reported only 10 times in Australia over the last 150 years as incidental findings, adult Pentastomids referred to as Linguatula serrata have been encountered in nasal cavities of domestic and wild dogs, and foxes. Nymphs have been reported in cattle and rabbits. In the present study, a number of potential definitive hosts, including red foxes (Vulpes vulpes, wild dogs (Canis lupus dingo and C.l. dingo x C. familiaris and feral cats (Felis catus, and intermediate hosts cattle (Bos taurus, sheep (Ovis aries, feral pigs (Sus scrofa, rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus, goats (Capra hircus and a European hare (Lepus europaeus, from the highlands of south-eastern Australia were examined. Of the animals examined 67.6% of wild dogs (n = 37, 14.5% of red foxes (n = 55 and 4.3% of cattle (n = 164 were found to be infected with Pentastomids, herein identified as Linguatula cf. serrata. The common occurrence of the parasite in wild dogs and less frequently in foxes suggests these wild canids have potential to act as a reservoir for infection of livestock, wildlife, domestic dogs and possibly humans. The unexpected high frequency of the parasite in wild dogs and foxes in south-eastern Australia suggests the parasite is more common than previously realised. Of the potential intermediate hosts in the region, only 4.3% of cattle were found to be infected with pentastomid nymphs which suggest the search for the host(s acting as the main intermediate host in the region should continue. Future studies should investigate transmission patterns, health impacts on hosts and whether the parasite has zoonotic significance in Australia. Keywords: Tongue worm, Australia, Linguatulidae, Pentastomida

  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.

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    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.

  6. Who are the important predators of sea turtle nests at Wreck Rock beach?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lei, Juan; Booth, David T

    2017-01-01

    Excessive sea turtle nest predation is a problem for conservation management of sea turtle populations. This study assessed predation on nests of the endangered loggerhead sea turtle ( Caretta caretta ) at Wreck Rock beach adjacent to Deepwater National Park in Southeast Queensland, Australia after a control program for feral foxes was instigated. The presence of predators on the nesting dune was evaluated by tracking plots (2 × 1 m) every 100 m along the dune front. There were 21 (2014-2015) and 41 (2015-2016) plots established along the dune, and these were monitored for predator tracks daily over three consecutive months in both nesting seasons. Predator activities at nests were also recorded by the presence of tracks on top of nests until hatchlings emerged. In addition, camera traps were set to record the predator activity around selected nests. The tracks of the fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) and goanna ( Varanus spp ) were found on tracking plots. Tracking plots, nest tracks and camera traps indicated goanna abundance varied strongly between years. Goannas were widely distributed along the beach and had a Passive Activity Index (PAI) (0.31 in 2014-2015 and 0.16 in 2015-2016) approximately seven times higher than that of foxes (PAI 0.04 in 2014-2015 and 0.02 in 2015-2016). Five hundred and twenty goanna nest visitation events were recorded by tracks but no fox tracks were found at turtle nests. Camera trap data indicated that yellow-spotted goannas ( Varanus panoptes ) appeared at loggerhead turtle nests more frequently than lace monitors ( V. varius ) did, and further that lace monitors only predated nests previously opened by yellow-spotted goannas. No foxes were recorded at nests with camera traps. This study suggests that large male yellow-spotted goannas are the major predator of sea turtle nests at the Wreck Rock beach nesting aggregation and that goanna activity varies between years.

  7. Filarioid infections in wild carnivores: a multispecies survey in Romania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ionică, Angela Monica; Matei, Ioana Adriana; D'Amico, Gianluca; Ababii, Jana; Daskalaki, Aikaterini Alexandra; Sándor, Attila D; Enache, Dorin Valter; Gherman, Călin Mircea; Mihalca, Andrei Daniel

    2017-07-13

    Filarioids are vector-borne parasitic nematodes of vertebrates. In Europe, eight species of filarioids, including zoonotic species, have been reported mainly in domestic dogs, and occasionally in wild carnivores. In Romania, infections with Dirofilaria spp. and Acanthocheilonema reconditum are endemic in domestic dogs. Despite the abundant populations of wild carnivores in the country, their role in the epidemiology of filarioid parasites remains largely unknown. The aim of the present study was to assess the host range, prevalence and distribution of filarioid infections in wild carnivores present in Romania. Between May 2014 and February 2016, 432 spleen samples originating from 14 species of wild carnivores have been tested for the presence of DNA of three species of filarioids (D. immitis, D. repens and A. reconditum). Overall 14 samples (3.24%) were molecularly positive. The most prevalent species was D. immitis (1.62%), accounting for 50% (n = 7) of the positive animals. The prevalence of D. repens was 1.39%, while that of A. reconditum was 0.23%. No co-infections were detected. Dirofilaria immitis DNA was detected in five golden jackals, Canis aureus (7.58%), one red fox, Vulpes vulpes (0.33%), and one wildcat, Felis silvestris (10%). The presence of D. repens DNA was detected in two red foxes (0.66%), two golden jackals (3.03%), one grey wolf (7.14%), and one least weasel, Mustela nivalis (33.33%). Acanthocheilonema reconditum DNA was found only in one red fox (0.33%). The present study provides molecular evidence of filarial infections in wild carnivore species in Romania, suggesting their potential epidemiological role and reports a new host species for D. repens.

  8. High density of fox and cat faeces in kitchen gardens and resulting rodent exposure to Echinococcus multilocularis and Toxoplasma gondii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bastien, Matthieu; Vaniscotte, Amelie; Combes, Benoit; Umhang, Gerald; Germain, Estelle; Gouley, Valentin; Pierlet, Alice; Quintaine, Thomas; Forin-Wiart, Marie-Amelie; Villena, Isabelle; Aubert, Dominique; Boue, Franck; Poulle, Marie-Lazarine

    2018-03-08

    The faeces of the red fox, Vulpes vulpes (Linnaeus), and the domestic cat, Felis catus (Linnaeus), can be responsible for spreading eggs of Echinococcus multilocularis Leuckart, 1863 and oocysts of Toxoplasma gondii (Nicolle et Manceaux, 1908) into the environment. The accidental ingestion of these eggs or oocysts, through consumption of raw fruits or vegetables grown in or in contact with contaminated soil, can lead to alveolar echinococcosis (AE) or toxoplasmosis in humans. The present study provides a quantitative assessment of the faecal deposition by foxes and cats in kitchen gardens where fruits and vegetables are grown and its consequences for zoonosis transmission. The density of definitive host faeces is considered as one of the main factors in infection risk for intermediate hosts. The density of fox and cat faeces, as well as the prevalence of both AE and toxoplasmosis in rodent populations (contaminated by ingestion of eggs or oocysts), were compared within and outside kitchen gardens. Our results showed that the mean density of fox faeces did not significantly differ between kitchen gardens and habitat edges (0.29 ± 0.04 faeces/m 2 vs 0.22 ± 0.02 faeces/m 2 ), the latter being known as an area of high fox faeceal densities. The density of cat faeces was significantly higher within the kitchen garden than outside (0.86 ± 0.22 faeces/m 2 vs 0.04 ± 0.02 faeces/m 2 ). The sampled kitchen gardens might therefore be considered as possible hotspots for both fox and cat defecation. Of the 130 rodents trapped, 14% were infected by at least one species of fox or cat intestinal parasite. These rodents were significantly more often infected when they were exposed to a kitchen garden. These results suggest that the deposit of fox and cat faeces in kitchen gardens would significantly impact the risk of human exposure to E. multilocularis and T. gondii. and should be prevented using effective means.

  9. Consumption of Big Game Remains by Scavengers: A Potential Risk as Regards Disease Transmission in Central Spain

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    Ricardo Carrasco-Garcia

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the role that facultative scavenger species may play in spreading infectious pathogens, and even becoming reservoirs for humans, domestic and wild ungulates or, on the contrary, preventing the spread of disease, requires a prior understanding of the pattern of carrion scavenging in specific scenarios. The objectives of this paper are (i to describe the guild of vertebrate scavengers and (ii to study the species-specific, habitat, and management-related factors involved in the usage of gut piles in South Central Spain (SCS, a tuberculosis (TB endemic area. We used camera trapping at 18 hunting piles on seven hunting estates. A total of eight bird and five mammal taxa were detected at the remains of hunting piles. The most frequently detected species in terms of number of gut piles visited (78% and scavenged (61% was the red fox Vulpes vulpes, followed by the griffon vulture Gyps fulvus (56% as regards both presence and scavenging and the raven Corvus corax (61 and 39% as regards presence and scavenging, respectively. We evidenced that griffon vultures accounted for most of the scavenging activity in open habitats, while facultative mammal scavengers, red fox, and wild boar Sus scrofa made the highest contribution to scavenging in vegetation-covered habitats. In the case of wild boar, the gut piles deposited during the evening and night favored higher rates of scavenging, while the opposite pattern was observed for griffons. Overall, our findings suggest that when disposing of hunting remains in areas of risk as regards disease transmission it is particularly important to consider the access that facultative mammals, and especially wild boar, have to material, while the presence of the resource needs to be safeguarded to protect specialist scavengers of conservation value. These results are of particular relevance in the case of wild boar in the current context of re-emerging TB and emerging African swine fever (ASF in Europe.

  10. A meiotic linkage map of the silver fox, aligned and compared to the canine genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kukekova, Anna V; Trut, Lyudmila N; Oskina, Irina N; Johnson, Jennifer L; Temnykh, Svetlana V; Kharlamova, Anastasiya V; Shepeleva, Darya V; Gulievich, Rimma G; Shikhevich, Svetlana G; Graphodatsky, Alexander S; Aguirre, Gustavo D; Acland, Gregory M

    2007-03-01

    A meiotic linkage map is essential for mapping traits of interest and is often the first step toward understanding a cryptic genome. Specific strains of silver fox (a variant of the red fox, Vulpes vulpes), which segregate behavioral and morphological phenotypes, create a need for such a map. One such strain, selected for docility, exhibits friendly dog-like responses to humans, in contrast to another strain selected for aggression. Development of a fox map is facilitated by the known cytogenetic homologies between the dog and fox, and by the availability of high resolution canine genome maps and sequence data. Furthermore, the high genomic sequence identity between dog and fox allows adaptation of canine microsatellites for genotyping and meiotic mapping in foxes. Using 320 such markers, we have constructed the first meiotic linkage map of the fox genome. The resulting sex-averaged map covers 16 fox autosomes and the X chromosome with an average inter-marker distance of 7.5 cM. The total map length corresponds to 1480.2 cM. From comparison of sex-averaged meiotic linkage maps of the fox and dog genomes, suppression of recombination in pericentromeric regions of the metacentric fox chromosomes was apparent, relative to the corresponding segments of acrocentric dog chromosomes. Alignment of the fox meiotic map against the 7.6x canine genome sequence revealed high conservation of marker order between homologous regions of the two species. The fox meiotic map provides a critical tool for genetic studies in foxes and identification of genetic loci and genes implicated in fox domestication.

  11. Population dynamics of caribou herds in southwestern Alaska

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    Patrick Valkenburg

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available The five naturally occurring and one transplanted caribou (Rangifer tarandus granti herd in southwestern Alaska composed about 20% of Alaska's caribou population in 2001. All five of the naturally occurring herds fluctuated considerably in size between the late 1800s and 2001 and for some herds the data provide an indication of long-term periodic (40-50 year fluctuations. At the present time, the Unimak (UCH and Southern Alaska Peninsula (SAP are recovering from population declines, the Northern Alaska Peninsula Herd (NAP appears to be nearing the end of a protracted decline, and the Mulchatna Herd (MCH appears to now be declining after 20 years of rapid growth. The remaining naturally occurring herd (Kilbuck has virtually disappeared. Nutrition had a significant effect on the size of 4-month-old and 10-month-old calves in the NAP and the Nushagak Peninsula Herd (NPCH and probably also on population growth in at least 4 (SAP, NAP, NPCH, and MCH of the six caribou herds in southwestern Alaska. Predation does not appear to be sufficient to keep caribou herds in southwestern Alaska from expanding, probably because rabies is endemic in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes and is periodically transferred to wolves (Canis lupus and other canids. However, we found evidence that pneumonia and hoof rot may result in significant mortality of caribou in southwestern Alaska, whereas there is no evidence that disease is important in the dynamics of Interior herds. Cooperative conservation programs, such as the Kilbuck Caribou Management Plan, can be successful in restraining traditional harvest and promoting growth in caribou herds. In southwestern Alaska we also found evidence that small caribou herds can be swamped and assimilated by large herds, and fidelity to traditional calving areas can be lost.

  12. Who are the important predators of sea turtle nests at Wreck Rock beach?

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    Juan Lei

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Excessive sea turtle nest predation is a problem for conservation management of sea turtle populations. This study assessed predation on nests of the endangered loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta at Wreck Rock beach adjacent to Deepwater National Park in Southeast Queensland, Australia after a control program for feral foxes was instigated. The presence of predators on the nesting dune was evaluated by tracking plots (2 × 1 m every 100 m along the dune front. There were 21 (2014–2015 and 41 (2015–2016 plots established along the dune, and these were monitored for predator tracks daily over three consecutive months in both nesting seasons. Predator activities at nests were also recorded by the presence of tracks on top of nests until hatchlings emerged. In addition, camera traps were set to record the predator activity around selected nests. The tracks of the fox (Vulpes vulpes and goanna (Varanus spp were found on tracking plots. Tracking plots, nest tracks and camera traps indicated goanna abundance varied strongly between years. Goannas were widely distributed along the beach and had a Passive Activity Index (PAI (0.31 in 2014–2015 and 0.16 in 2015–2016 approximately seven times higher than that of foxes (PAI 0.04 in 2014–2015 and 0.02 in 2015–2016. Five hundred and twenty goanna nest visitation events were recorded by tracks but no fox tracks were found at turtle nests. Camera trap data indicated that yellow-spotted goannas (Varanus panoptes appeared at loggerhead turtle nests more frequently than lace monitors (V. varius did, and further that lace monitors only predated nests previously opened by yellow-spotted goannas. No foxes were recorded at nests with camera traps. This study suggests that large male yellow-spotted goannas are the major predator of sea turtle nests at the Wreck Rock beach nesting aggregation and that goanna activity varies between years.

  13. Identification of host blood-meal sources and Borrelia in field-collected Ixodes ricinus ticks in north-western Poland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beata Wodecka

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Forest animals play fundamental roles in the maintenance of [i]Ixodes ricinus[/i] and [i]Borrelia[/i] species in the forest biotope. To identify the forest vertebrate species that are host for I. ricinus and for the recognition of the reservoirs of [i]Borrelia[/i] species, the blood-meal of 325 [i]I. ricinus[/i] ticks collected at two forest sites in north-western Poland were analysed. Nested PCR was used to detect polymorphisms in a fragment of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA gene for the identification of the hosts species. The products were digested with the restriction enzymes, a combination that allows the identification of 60 vertebrate species, comprising 17 bird, 4 reptile and 39 mammalian species. Host DNA was detected in 244 (75%[i] I. ricinus[/i] individuals, with the species being detected and classified for 210 (86% samples. The restriction patterns resulted in the identification of 14 vertebrate species, including 2 species of birds, lizard, badger, rabbit, deer; most of the samples contained DNA from wild boar ([i]Sus scrofa[/i], red fox ([i]Vulpes vulpes[/i], red deer ([i]Cervus elaphus[/i] and roe deer ([i]Capreolus capreolus[/i]. Identification of Borrelia species was based on the flaB gene using nested PCR coupled to RFLP. This method allows the identification of all [i]Borrelia[/i] species transmitted by [i]I. ricinus [/i]in Europe, including [i]B. miyamotoi[/i] and 3 genetic variants of [i]B. garinii[/i]. In the studied isolates, 2 species belonging to [i]B. burgdorferi[/i] sensu lato were identified – B. [i]garinii [/i]and B. [i]afzelii[/i], and B. [i]miyamotoi,[/i] which are related to relapsing fever borreliae.

  14. 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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  15. Rabbit biocontrol and landscape-scale recovery of threatened desert mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedler, Reece D; Brandle, Robert; Read, John L; Southgate, Richard; Bird, Peter; Moseby, Katherine E

    2016-08-01

    Funding for species conservation is insufficient to meet the current challenges facing global biodiversity, yet many programs use expensive single-species recovery actions and neglect broader management that addresses threatening processes. Arid Australia has the world's worst modern mammalian extinction record, largely attributable to competition from introduced herbivores, particularly European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) and predation by feral cats (Felis catus) and foxes (Vulpes vulpes). The biological control agent rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV) was introduced to Australia in 1995 and resulted in dramatic, widespread rabbit suppression. We compared the area of occupancy and extent of occurrence of 4 extant species of small mammals before and after RHDV outbreak, relative to rainfall, sampling effort, and rabbit and predator populations. Despite low rainfall during the first 14 years after RHDV, 2 native rodents listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the dusky hopping-mouse (Notomys fuscus) and plains mouse (Pseudomys australis), increased their extent of occurrence by 241-365%. A threatened marsupial micropredator, the crest-tailed mulgara (Dasycercus cristicauda), underwent a 70-fold increase in extent of occurrence and a 20-fold increase in area of occupancy. Both bottom-up and top-down trophic effects were attributed to RHDV, namely decreased competition for food resources and declines in rabbit-dependent predators. Based on these sustained increases, these 3 previously threatened species now qualify for threat-category downgrading on the IUCN Red List. These recoveries are on a scale rarely documented in mammals and give impetus to programs aimed at targeted use of RHDV in Australia, rather than simply employing top-down threat-based management of arid ecosystems. Conservation programs that take big-picture approaches to addressing threatening processes over large spatial scales should be prioritized to maximize

  16. A citizen science based survey method for estimating the density of urban carnivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Rowenna; Charman, Naomi; Karlsson, Heidi; Yarnell, Richard W.; Mill, Aileen C.; Smith, Graham C.; Tolhurst, Bryony A.

    2018-01-01

    Globally there are many examples of synanthropic carnivores exploiting growth in urbanisation. As carnivores can come into conflict with humans and are potential vectors of zoonotic disease, assessing densities in suburban areas and identifying factors that influence them are necessary to aid management and mitigation. However, fragmented, privately owned land restricts the use of conventional carnivore surveying techniques in these areas, requiring development of novel methods. We present a method that combines questionnaire distribution to residents with field surveys and GIS, to determine relative density of two urban carnivores in England, Great Britain. We determined the density of: red fox (Vulpes vulpes) social groups in 14, approximately 1km2 suburban areas in 8 different towns and cities; and Eurasian badger (Meles meles) social groups in three suburban areas of one city. Average relative fox group density (FGD) was 3.72 km-2, which was double the estimates for cities with resident foxes in the 1980’s. Density was comparable to an alternative estimate derived from trapping and GPS-tracking, indicating the validity of the method. However, FGD did not correlate with a national dataset based on fox sightings, indicating unreliability of the national data to determine actual densities or to extrapolate a national population estimate. Using species-specific clustering units that reflect social organisation, the method was additionally applied to suburban badgers to derive relative badger group density (BGD) for one city (Brighton, 2.41 km-2). We demonstrate that citizen science approaches can effectively obtain data to assess suburban carnivore density, however publicly derived national data sets need to be locally validated before extrapolations can be undertaken. The method we present for assessing densities of foxes and badgers in British towns and cities is also adaptable to other urban carnivores elsewhere. However this transferability is contingent on

  17. Effects of rodent species, seed species, and predator cues on seed fate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivy, Kelly J.; Ostoja, Steven M.; Schupp, Eugene W.; Durham, Susan

    2011-07-01

    Seed selection, removal and subsequent management by granivorous animals is thought to be a complex interaction of factors including qualities of the seeds themselves (e.g., seed size, nutritional quality) and features of the local habitat (e.g. perceived predator risk). At the same time, differential seed selection and dispersal is thought to have profound effects on seed fate and potentially vegetation dynamics. In a feeding arena, we tested whether rodent species, seed species, and indirect and direct predation cues influence seed selection and handling behaviors (e.g., scatter hoarding versus larder hoarding) of two heteromyid rodents, Ord's kangaroo rat ( Dipodomys ordii) and the Great Basin pocket mouse ( Perognathus parvus). The indirect cue was shrub cover, a feature of the environment. Direct cues, presented individually, were (1) control, (2) coyote ( Canis latrans) vocalization, (3) coyote scent, (4) red fox ( Vulpes vulpes) scent, or (5) short-eared owl ( Asio flammeus) vocalization. We offered seeds of three sizes: two native grasses, Indian ricegrass ( Achnatherum hymenoides) and bluebunch wheatgrass ( Pseudoroegneria spicata), and the non-native cereal rye ( Secale cereale), each in separate trays. Kangaroo rats preferentially harvested Indian ricegrass while pocket mice predominately harvested Indian ricegrass and cereal rye. Pocket mice were more likely to scatter hoard preferred seeds, whereas kangaroo rats mostly consumed and/or larder hoarded preferred seeds. No predator cue significantly affected seed preferences. However, both species altered seed handling behavior in response to direct predation cues by leaving more seeds available in the seed pool, though they responded to different predator cues. If these results translate to natural dynamics on the landscape, the two rodents are expected to have different impacts on seed survival and plant recruitment via their different seed selection and seed handling behaviors.

  18. Impacts of Mesopredator Control on Conservation of Mesopredators and Their Prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L Mike Conner

    Full Text Available Declining large carnivore populations, increased habitat fragmentation, declining interests in fur trapping, and other anthropogenic factors can all lead to increased mesopredator populations and these may negatively impact biodiversity. Lethal mesopredator control potentially mitigates some of these effects but can be controversial, largely because impacts on mesopredator populations have not been evaluated. Estimating these impacts may reduce controversies while increasing our understanding of when lethal control may be beneficial. Therefore, we analyzed published mesopredator removal data to determine if mesopredator removal rates changed over time. Removals of medium,(e.g., raccoons (Procyon lotor or red foxes (Vulpes vulpes, and large, i.e., bobcats (Lynx rufus or coyotes (Canis latrans, mesopredators were consistent from year to year and over the duration of study (i.e., number removed during the first and last years of studies were similar. In contrast, removals of small mesopredators, e.g., weasels (Mustela spp. or spotted skunks (Spilogale putorius, declined over the duration of study. Study area size, number of species targeted for removal, and duration of removal effort were poor predictors of removal rates. Our analyses suggest that: (1 control, as typically implemented, is unlikely to cause negative long-term impacts on populations of medium and large mesopredators but may negatively impact small mesopredators, (2 if mesopredator control benefits prey, recurring removals will generally be needed to maintain benefits, and (3 timing of removals will be important to achieve management goals. We suggest that mesopredator control efforts are frequently spatially structured harvests from continuously distributed populations. This may explain (1 why removal of small mesopredators declined over time; whereas, medium and large mesopredator removals remained consistent, and (2 why some prey failed to respond to mesopredator control efforts.

  19. Ontogenic retinal changes in three ecologically distinct elopomorph fishes (Elopomorpha:Teleostei) correlate with light environment and behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Scott M; Loew, Ellis R; Grace, Michael S

    2015-01-01

    Unlike the mammalian retina, the teleost fish retina undergoes persistent neurogenesis from intrinsic stem cells. In marine teleosts, most cone photoreceptor genesis occurs early in the embryonic and larval stages, and rods are added primarily during and after metamorphosis. This study demonstrates a developmental paradigm in elopomorph fishes in which retinas are rod-dominated in larvae, but undergo periods of later cone genesis. Retinal characteristics were compared at different developmental stages among three ecologically distinct elopomorph fishes-ladyfish (Elops saurus), bonefish (Albula vulpes), and speckled worm eel (Myrophis punctatus). The objectives were to improve our understanding of (1) the developmental strategy in the elopomorph retina, (2) the functional architecture of the retina as it relates to ecology, and (3) how the light environment influences photoreceptor genesis. Photoreceptor morphologies, distributions, and spectral absorption were studied at larval, juvenile, and adult stages. Premetamorphic retinas in all three species are rod-dominated, but the retinas of these species undergo dramatic change over the course of development, resulting in juvenile and adult retinal characteristics that correlate closely with ecology. Adult E. saurus has high rod densities, grouped photoreceptors, a reflective tapetum, and longer-wavelength photopigments, supporting vision in turbid, low-light conditions. Adult A. vulpes has high cone densities, low rod densities, and shorter-wavelength photopigments, supporting diurnal vision in shallow, clear water. M. punctatus loses cones during metamorphosis, develops new cones after settlement, and maintains high rod but low cone densities, supporting primarily nocturnal vision. M. punctatus secondary cone genesis occurs rapidly throughout the retina, suggesting a novel mechanism of vertebrate photoreceptor genesis. Finally, in postsettlement M. punctatus, the continuous presence or absence of visible light

  20. Mesopredator Management: Effects of Red Fox Control on the Abundance, Diet and Use of Space by Feral Cats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robyn Molsher

    Full Text Available Apex predators are subject to lethal control in many parts of the world to minimize their impacts on human industries and livelihoods. Diverse communities of smaller predators-mesopredators-often remain after apex predator removal. Despite concern that these mesopredators may be 'released' in the absence of the apex predator and exert negative effects on each other and on co-occurring prey, these interactions have been little studied. Here, we investigate the potential effects of competition and intraguild predation between red foxes (Vulpes vulpes and feral cats (Felis catus in south-eastern Australia where the apex predator, the dingo (Canis dingo, has been extirpated by humans. We predicted that the larger fox would dominate the cat in encounters, and used a fox-removal experiment to assess whether foxes affect cat abundance, diet, home-range and habitat use. Our results provide little indication that intraguild predation occurred or that cats responded numerically to the fox removal, but suggest that the fox affects some aspects of cat resource use. In particular, where foxes were removed cats increased their consumption of invertebrates and carrion, decreased their home range size and foraged more in open habitats. Fox control takes place over large areas of Australia to protect threatened native species and agricultural interests. Our results suggest that fox control programmes could lead to changes in the way that cats interact with co-occurring prey, and that some prey may become more vulnerable to cat predation in open habitats after foxes have been removed. Moreover, with intensive and more sustained fox control it is possible that cats could respond numerically and alter their behaviour in different ways to those documented herein. Such outcomes need to be considered when estimating the indirect impacts of fox control. We conclude that novel approaches are urgently required to control invasive mesopredators at the same time

  1. Invasive carnivores alter ecological function and enhance complementarity in scavenger assemblages on ocean beaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Marion B; Schlacher, Thomas A; Schoeman, David S; Weston, Michael A; Huijbers, Chantal M; Olds, Andrew D; Connolly, Rod M

    2015-10-01

    Species composition is expected to alter ecological function in assemblages if species traits differ strongly. Such effects are often large and persistent for nonnative carnivores invading islands. Alternatively, high similarity in traits within assemblages creates a degree of functional redundancy in ecosystems. Here we tested whether species turnover results in functional ecological equivalence or complementarity, and whether invasive carnivores on islands significantly alter such ecological function. The model system consisted of vertebrate scavengers (dominated by raptors) foraging on animal carcasses on ocean beaches on two Australian islands, one with and one without invasive red foxes (Vulpes vulpes). Partitioning of scavenging events among species, carcass removal rates, and detection speeds were quantified using camera traps baited with fish carcasses at the dune-beach interface. Complete segregation of temporal foraging niches between mammals (nocturnal) and birds (diurnal) reflects complementarity in carrion utilization. Conversely, functional redundancy exists within the bird guild where several species of raptors dominate carrion removal in a broadly similar way. As predicted, effects of red foxes were large. They substantially changed the nature and rate of the scavenging process in the system: (1) foxes consumed over half (55%) of all carrion available at night, compared with negligible mammalian foraging at night on the fox-free island, and (2) significant shifts in the composition of the scavenger assemblages consuming beach-cast carrion are the consequence of fox invasion at one island. Arguably, in the absence of other mammalian apex predators, the addition of red foxes creates a new dimension of functional complementarity in beach food webs. However, this functional complementarity added by foxes is neither benign nor neutral, as marine carrion subsidies to coastal red fox populations are likely to facilitate their persistence as exotic

  2. Neospora caninum and Toxoplasma gondii antibody prevalence in Alaska wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stieve, Erica; Beckmen, Kimberlee; Kania, Stephen A; Widner, Amanda; Patton, Sharon

    2010-04-01

    Free-ranging caribou and moose populations in some regions of Alaska undergo periodic declines in numbers. Caribou and moose are managed by the state as valuable resources for not only sustenance and subsistence, but also for cultural heritage. Incidence and prevalence of diseases that may impact herd health and recruitment from year to year are relevant to management decisions aimed to protect the long-term viability of these herds. Neospora caninum and Toxoplasma gondii are two apicomplexan parasites that can cause neurologic disease and abortions in their intermediate hosts and less frequently cause disease in their definitive hosts. The definitive hosts of N. caninum and T. gondii are canids and felids, respectively, and prevalence in the environment is in part dependent on maintenance of the life cycle through the definitive hosts. Serum samples from caribou (Rangifer tarandus, n=453), wolf (Canis lupus, n=324), moose (Alces alces, n=201), black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus, n=55), coyote (Canis latrans, n=12), and fox (Vulpes vulpes, n=9) collected in Alaska were assayed for N. caninum- and T. gondii-reactive antibodies with an immunofluorescent antibody test (IFAT) and a modified agglutination test (MAT), respectively. Seroprevalence of N. caninum was greater in caribou (11.5%) than in wolves (9.0%), moose (0.5%), or black-tailed deer (0%). Seroprevalence of T. gondii was greater in wolves (17.8%) than in caribou (0.4%), moose (0%), or black-tailed deer (0%). Seroprevalence of N. caninum and T. gondii were 16.7% and 0.0% in coyotes and 0.0% and 12.5% in fox, but small sample sizes prevented further analysis. Antibodies to N. caninum in young caribou compared to adult caribou suggest that vertical transmission may be an important component of new infections in Alaskan caribou. The spatial distribution of antibody-positive individuals across Alaska may reflect differences in frequency of definitive hosts and alteration of predation patterns among regions.

  3. A Serological Survey of Infectious Disease in Yellowstone National Park’s Canid Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almberg, Emily S.; Mech, L. David; Smith, Douglas W.; Sheldon, Jennifer W.; Crabtree, Robert L.

    2009-01-01

    Background Gray wolves (Canis lupus) were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park (YNP) after a >70 year absence, and as part of recovery efforts, the population has been closely monitored. In 1999 and 2005, pup survival was significantly reduced, suggestive of disease outbreaks. Methodology/Principal Findings We analyzed sympatric wolf, coyote (Canis latrans), and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) serologic data from YNP, spanning 1991–2007, to identify long-term patterns of pathogen exposure, identify associated risk factors, and examine evidence for disease-induced mortality among wolves for which there were survival data. We found high, constant exposure to canine parvovirus (wolf seroprevalence: 100%; coyote: 94%), canine adenovirus-1 (wolf pups [0.5–0.9 yr]: 91%, adults [≥1 yr]: 96%; coyote juveniles [0.5–1.5 yrs]: 18%, adults [≥1.6 yrs]: 83%), and canine herpesvirus (wolf: 87%; coyote juveniles: 23%, young adults [1.6–4.9 yrs]: 51%, old adults [≥5 yrs]: 87%) suggesting that these pathogens were enzootic within YNP wolves and coyotes. An average of 50% of wolves exhibited exposure to the protozoan parasite, Neospora caninum, although individuals’ odds of exposure tended to increase with age and was temporally variable. Wolf, coyote, and fox exposure to canine distemper virus (CDV) was temporally variable, with evidence for distinct multi-host outbreaks in 1999 and 2005, and perhaps a smaller, isolated outbreak among wolves in the interior of YNP in 2002. The years of high wolf-pup mortality in 1999 and 2005 in the northern region of the park were correlated with peaks in CDV seroprevalence, suggesting that CDV contributed to the observed mortality. Conclusions/Significance Of the pathogens we examined, none appear to jeopardize the long-term population of canids in YNP. However, CDV appears capable of causing short-term population declines. Additional information on how and where CDV is maintained and the frequency with which future epizootics might

  4. Associations between biosecurity and outbreaks of canine distemper on Danish mink farms in 2012-2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregers-Jensen, Louise; Agger, Jens Frederik; Hammer, Anne Sofie Vedsted; Andresen, Lars; Chrièl, Mariann; Hagberg, Emma; Jensen, Mette Kragh; Hansen, Mette Sif; Hjulsager, Charlotte Kristiane; Struve, Tina

    2015-09-30

    During 8 months from July 2012 to February 2013, a major outbreak of canine distemper involving 64 mink farms occurred on the Danish peninsula of Jutland. The canine distemper outbreak was associated with exposure of farmed mink to infected wild carnivores and could represent a deficit in biosecurity on the mink farms. The aim of this study was to investigate the extent and association of specific biosecurity measures with the outbreak. The study was carried out in an epidemiological case-control design. The case group consisted of the 61 farms, which had a confirmed outbreak of canine distemper from July 2012 to February 2013. The control group included 54 farms without an outbreak of canine distemper in 2012 or 2013, selected as the closest geographical neighbour to a case farm. The results showed that significantly more control than case farms had vaccinated their mink against canine distemper virus. Mortality was only assessed on the case farms, and there was a non-significantly lower mortality on vaccinated farms than on the non-vaccinated farms. Furthermore, the proportion of farms with observations of wild red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) inside the farm enclosures were larger for case farms, indicating that the control farms had a better biosecurity or were not equally exposed to canine distemper virus. Generally, all farms had very few specific precautions at the gate entrance in respect to human visitors as well as animals. The use of biosecurity measures was very variable in both case and control farms. Not using plastic boot covers, presence of dogs and cats, presence of demarcated area for changing clothes when entering and leaving the farm area and presence of hand washing facilities significantly lowered the odds of the farm having a canine distemper virus outbreak. The results of the study indicate that consistent use of correct vaccination strategies, implementation of biosecurity measures and limiting human and animal access to the mink farm can be

  5. A serological survey of infectious disease in Yellowstone National Park's canid community.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily S Almberg

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Gray wolves (Canis lupus were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park (YNP after a >70 year absence, and as part of recovery efforts, the population has been closely monitored. In 1999 and 2005, pup survival was significantly reduced, suggestive of disease outbreaks. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We analyzed sympatric wolf, coyote (Canis latrans, and red fox (Vulpes vulpes serologic data from YNP, spanning 1991-2007, to identify long-term patterns of pathogen exposure, identify associated risk factors, and examine evidence for disease-induced mortality among wolves for which there were survival data. We found high, constant exposure to canine parvovirus (wolf seroprevalence: 100%; coyote: 94%, canine adenovirus-1 (wolf pups [0.5-0.9 yr]: 91%, adults [>or=1 yr]: 96%; coyote juveniles [0.5-1.5 yrs]: 18%, adults [>or=1.6 yrs]: 83%, and canine herpesvirus (wolf: 87%; coyote juveniles: 23%, young adults [1.6-4.9 yrs]: 51%, old adults [>or=5 yrs]: 87% suggesting that these pathogens were enzootic within YNP wolves and coyotes. An average of 50% of wolves exhibited exposure to the protozoan parasite, Neospora caninum, although individuals' odds of exposure tended to increase with age and was temporally variable. Wolf, coyote, and fox exposure to canine distemper virus (CDV was temporally variable, with evidence for distinct multi-host outbreaks in 1999 and 2005, and perhaps a smaller, isolated outbreak among wolves in the interior of YNP in 2002. The years of high wolf-pup mortality in 1999 and 2005 in the northern region of the park were correlated with peaks in CDV seroprevalence, suggesting that CDV contributed to the observed mortality. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Of the pathogens we examined, none appear to jeopardize the long-term population of canids in YNP. However, CDV appears capable of causing short-term population declines. Additional information on how and where CDV is maintained and the frequency with which future

  6. A serological survey of infectious disease in Yellowstone National Park's canid community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almberg, E.S.; Mech, L.D.; Smith, D.W.; Sheldon, J.W.; Crabtree, R.L.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Gray wolves (Canis lupus) were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park (YNP) after a >70 year absence, and as part of recovery efforts, the population has been closely monitored. In 1999 and 2005, pup survival was significantly reduced, suggestive of disease outbreaks. Methodology/Principal Findings: We analyzed sympatric wolf, coyote (Canis latrans), and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) serologic data from YNP, spanning 1991–2007, to identify long-term patterns of pathogen exposure, identify associated risk factors, and examine evidence for disease-induced mortality among wolves for which there were survival data. We found high, constant exposure to canine parvovirus (wolf seroprevalence: 100%; coyote: 94%), canine adenovirus-1 (wolf pups [0.5–0.9 yr]: 91%, adults [≥1 yr]: 96%; coyote juveniles [0.5–1.5 yrs]: 18%, adults [≥1.6 yrs]: 83%), and canine herpesvirus (wolf: 87%; coyote juveniles: 23%, young adults [1.6–4.9 yrs]: 51%, old adults [≥5 yrs]: 87%) suggesting that these pathogens were enzootic within YNP wolves and coyotes. An average of 50% of wolves exhibited exposure to the protozoan parasite, Neospora caninum, although individuals’ odds of exposure tended to increase with age and was temporally variable. Wolf, coyote, and fox exposure to canine distemper virus (CDV) was temporally variable, with evidence for distinct multi-host outbreaks in 1999 and 2005, and perhaps a smaller, isolated outbreak among wolves in the interior of YNP in 2002. The years of high wolf-pup mortality in 1999 and 2005 in the northern region of the park were correlated with peaks in CDV seroprevalence, suggesting that CDV contributed to the observed mortality. Conclusions/Significance: Of the pathogens we examined, none appear to jeopardize the long-term population of canids in YNP. However, CDV appears capable of causing short-term population declines. Additional information on how and where CDV is maintained and the frequency with which future epizootics

  7. Genetic regulation of canine skeletal traits: trade-offs between the hind limbs and forelimbs in the fox and dog

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kharlamova, Anastasia V.; Trut, Lyudmila N.; Carrier, David R.; Chase, Kevin; Lark, Karl G.

    2008-01-01

    Synopsis Genetic variation in functionally integrated skeletal traits can be maintained over 10 million years despite bottlenecks and stringent selection. Here, we describe an analysis of the genetic architecture of the canid axial skeleton using populations of the Portuguese Water Dog Canis familiaris) and silver fox (Vulpes vulpes). Twenty-one skeletal metrics taken from radiographs of the forelimbs and hind limbs of the fox and dog were used to construct separate anatomical principal component (PC) matrices of the two species. In both species, 15 of the 21 PCs exhibited significant heritability, ranging from 25% to 70%. The second PC, in both species, represents a trade-off in which limb-bone width is inversely correlated with limb-bone length. PC2 accounts for approximately 15% of the observed skeletal variation, ~30% of the variation in shape. Many of the other significant PCs affect very small amounts of variation (e.g., 0.2–2%) along trade-off axes that partition function between the forelimbs and hind limbs. These PCs represent shape axes in which an increase in size of an element of the forelimb is associated with a decrease in size of an element of the hind limb and vice versa. In most cases, these trade-offs are heritable in both species and genetic loci have been identified in the Portuguese Water Dog for many of these. These PCs, present in both the dog and the fox, include ones that affect lengths of the forelimb versus the hind limb, length of the forefoot versus that of the hind foot, muscle moment (i.e., lever) arms of the forelimb versus hind limb, and cortical thickness of the bones of the forelimb versus hind limb. These inverse relationships suggest that genetic regulation of the axial skeleton results, in part, from the action of genes that influence suites of functionally integrated traits. Their presence in both dogs and foxes suggests that the genes controlling the regulation of these PCs of the forelimb versus hind limb may be found in

  8. Estimates of soil ingestion by wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beyer, W.N.; Connor, E.E.; Gerould, S.

    1994-01-01

    Many wildlife species ingest soil while feeding, but ingestion rates are known for only a few species. Knowing ingestion rates may be important for studies of environmental contaminants. Wildlife may ingest soil deliberately, or incidentally, when they ingest soil-laden forage or animals that contain soil. We fed white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus) diets containing 0-15% soil to relate the dietary soil content to the acid-insoluble ash content of scat collected from the mice. The relation was described by an equation that required estimates of the percent acid-insoluble ash content of the diet, digestibility of the diet, and mineral content of soil. We collected scat from 28 wildlife species by capturing animals, searching appropriate habitats for scat, or removing material from the intestines of animals collected for other purposes. We measured the acid-insoluble ash content of the scat and estimated the soil content of the diets by using the soil-ingestion equation. Soil ingestion estimates should be considered only approximate because they depend on estimated rather than measured digestibility values and because animals collected from local populations at one time of the year may not represent the species as a whole. Sandpipers (Calidris spp.), which probe or peck for invertebrates in mud or shallow water, consumed sediments at a rate of 7-30% of their diets. Nine-banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus, soil = 17% of diet), American woodcock (Scolopax minor, 10%), and raccoon (Procyon lotor, 9%) had high rates of soil ingestion, presumably because they ate soil organisms. Bison (Bison bison, 7%), black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus, 8%), and Canada geese (Branta canadensis, 8%) consumed soil at the highest rates among the herbivores studied, and various browsers studied consumed little soil. Box turtle (Terrapene carolina, 4%), opossum (Didelphis virginiana, 5%), red fox (Vulpes vulpes, 3%), and wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo, 9%) consumed soil

  9. [Surveillance on severe acute respiratory syndrome associated coronavirus in animals at a live animal market of Guangzhou in 2004].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ming; Jing, Huai-qi; Xu, Hui-fang; Jiang, Xiu-gao; Kan, Biao; Liu, Qi-yong; Wan, Kang-lin; Cui, Bu-yun; Zheng, Han; Cui, Zhi-gang; Yan, Mei-ying; Liang, Wei-li; Wang, Hong-xia; Qi, Xiao-bao; Li, Zhen-jun; Li, Ma-chao; Chen, Kai; Zhang, En-min; Zhang, Shou-yin; Hai, Rong; Yu, Dong-zheng; Xu, Jian-guo

    2005-02-01

    To study the prevalence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) like virus in animals at a live animal market of Guanzhou in 2004 before and after culling of wild animal action taken by the local authority, in order to predict the re-emerging of SARS from animal originals in this region. Animals at live animal market were sampled for rectal and throat swabs in triplicate. A single step realtime reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) diagnostic kit was performed for screening SARS-CoV like virus, the manual nested RT- PCR and DNA sequencing were performed for confirmation. Only specimens which tested positive for both of the N and P genes by nested RT-PCR were scored as positive. In 31 animals sampled in January 5 2004 before culling of wild animals at Guangdong Province, including 20 cats (Felis catus), 5 red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and 6 Lesser rice field rats (Rattus losea), 8 (25.8%) animals were tested positive for SARS-CoV like virus by RT-PCR methods, of which 4 cats, 3 red fox and one Lesser rice field rats were included. However, two weeks after culling of animals and disinfection of the market were implemented, in 119 animals sampled in January 20 2004, including 6 rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus), 13 cats, 46 red jungle fowl (Gallus gallus), 13 spotbill duck (Anas platyrhynchos), 10 greylag goose (Anser anser), 31 Chinese francolin (Franclinus pintadeanus), only rectal swab from one greylag goose was tested positive for SARS-CoV like virus. Furthermore, in 102 animals that including 14 greylag gooses, 3 cats, 5 rabbits, 9 spotbill duck (Anaspoecilorhyncha), 2 Chinese francolin (Franclinus pintadeanus), 8 common pheasant (Phasianus colchicus), 6 pigeons, 9 Chinese muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi), 19 wild boar (Sus scrofa), 16 Lesser rice field rats, 5 dogs, 1 mink (Mustela vison), 3 goats, 2 green peafowl (Pavo muticus) sampled in April, May, June, July, August and November, only rectal swab from one pig was tested positive

  10. Top predators, mesopredators and their prey: interference ecosystems along bioclimatic productivity gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmhagen, B; Ludwig, G; Rushton, S P; Helle, P; Lindén, H

    2010-07-01

    1. The Mesopredator Release Hypothesis (MRH) suggests that top predator suppression of mesopredators is a key ecosystem function with cascading impacts on herbivore prey, but it remains to be shown that this top-down cascade impacts the large-scale structure of ecosystems. 2. The Exploitation Ecosystems Hypothesis (EEH) predicts that regional ecosystem structures are determined by top-down exploitation and bottom-up productivity. In contrast to MRH, EEH assumes that interference among predators has a negligible impact on the structure of ecosystems with three trophic levels. 3. We use the recolonization of a top predator in a three-level boreal ecosystem as a natural experiment to test if large-scale biomass distributions and population trends support MRH. Inspired by EEH, we also test if top-down interference and bottom-up productivity impact regional ecosystem structures. 4. We use data from the Finnish Wildlife Triangle Scheme which has monitored top predator (lynx, Lynx lynx), mesopredator (red fox, Vulpes vulpes) and prey (mountain hare, Lepus timidus) abundance for 17 years in a 200 000 km(2) study area which covers a distinct productivity gradient. 5. Fox biomass was lower than expected from productivity where lynx biomass was high, whilst hare biomass was lower than expected from productivity where fox biomass was high. Hence, where interference controlled fox abundance, lynx had an indirect positive impact on hare abundance as predicted by MRH. The rates of change indicated that lynx expansion gradually suppressed fox biomass. 6. Lynx status caused shifts between ecosystem structures. In the 'interference ecosystem', lynx and hare biomass increased with productivity whilst fox biomass did not. In the 'mesopredator release ecosystem', fox biomass increased with productivity but hare biomass did not. Thus, biomass controlled top-down did not respond to changes in productivity. This fulfils a critical prediction of EEH. 7. We conclude that the cascade

  11. Environmental conditions predict helminth prevalence in red foxes in Western Australia☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dybing, Narelle A.; Fleming, Patricia A.; Adams, Peter J.

    2013-01-01

    Red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are the most common and widely distributed wild carnivore worldwide. These predators harbour a wide range of parasites, many of which may have important conservation, agricultural and zoonotic repercussions. This project investigated the occurrence of helminth parasites from the intestines of 147 red foxes across 14 sampling localities of southwest Western Australia. Helminth parasites were detected in 58% of fox intestines: Dipylidium caninum (27.7% of foxes), Uncinaria stenocephala (18.2%), Toxocara canis (14.9%), Spirometra erinaceieuropaei (5.4%), Toxascaris leonina (4.7%), Taenia serialis (1.4%), Taenia hydatigena (0.7%), unidentified Taenia spp. (4.1%), Brachylaima cribbi (0.7%), Plagiorchis maculosus (0.7%) and an Acanthocephalan; family Centrorhynchidae (2.1%). Importantly, two cestodes of agricultural significance, Echinococcus granulosus and Taenia ovis, were not detected in red foxes in this study, despite the presence of suitable intermediate hosts in the diets of these animals. Parasite richness varied from 1–3 species per host, with average parasite number varying from 1–39 worms (across all helminth species). Regression analyses indicated that the presence of four helminth parasites was related to various environmental factors. The presence of S. erinaceieuropaei (p < 0.001), T. leonina (p < 0.01) and U. stenocephala (p < 0.01) was positively associated with average relative humidity which may affect the longevity of infective stages in the environment. The presence of S. erinaceieuropaei and U. stenocephala (p < 0.001) was positively associated with 5-y-average minimum temperature which could reflect poor survival of infective stages through cold winter conditions. The presence of T. canis and U. stenocephala (p < 0.001) was positively associated with the percentage cover of native vegetation at each sampling location, which is likely to reflect transmission from native prey species acting as paratenic hosts

  12. Genetic Characterization of Sarcoptes scabiei from Black Bears (Ursus americanus) and Other Hosts in the Eastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peltier, Sarah K; Brown, Justin D; Ternent, Mark; Niedringhaus, Kevin D; Schuler, Krysten; Bunting, Elizabeth M; Kirchgessner, Megan; Yabsley, Michael J

    2017-10-01

    Since the early 1990s there has been an increase in the number of cases and geographic expansion of severe mange in the black bear (Ursus americanus) population in Pennsylvania. Although there are 3 species of mites associated with mange in bears, Sarcoptes scabiei has been identified as the etiologic agent in these Pennsylvania cases. Historically, S. scabiei-associated mange in bears has been uncommon and sporadic, although it is widespread and relatively common in canid populations. To better understand this recent emergence of sarcoptic mange in bears in Pennsylvania and nearby states, we genetically characterized S. scabiei samples from black bears in the eastern United States. These sequences were compared with newly acquired S. scabiei sequences from wild canids (red fox [Vulpes vulpes] and coyote [Canis latrans]) and a porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum) from Pennsylvania and Kentucky and also existing sequences in GenBank. The internal transcribed spacer (ITS)-2 region and cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) gene were amplified and sequenced. Twenty-four ITS-2 sequences were obtained from mites from bears (n = 16), red fox (n = 5), coyote (n = 2), and a porcupine. The sequences from bear samples were identical to each other or differed only at polymorphic bases, whereas S. scabiei from canids were more variable, but 2 were identical to S. scabiei sequences from bears. Eighteen cox1 sequences obtained from mites from bears represented 6 novel haplotypes. Phylogenetic analysis of cox1 sequences revealed 4 clades: 2 clades of mites of human origin from Panama or Australia, a clade of mites from rabbits from China, and a large unresolved clade that included the remaining S. scabiei sequences from various hosts and regions, including sequences from the bears from the current study. Although the cox1 gene was more variable than the ITS-2, phylogenetic analyses failed to detect any clustering of S. scabiei from eastern U.S. hosts. Rather, sequences from black bears

  13. No evidence of a threshold in traffic volume affecting road-kill mortality at a large spatio-temporal scale

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grilo, Clara, E-mail: clarabentesgrilo@gmail.com [Departamento de Biología de la Conservación, Estación Biológica de Doñana (EBD-CSIC), Calle Américo Vespucio s/n, E-41092 Sevilla (Spain); Centro Brasileiro de Estudos em Ecologia de Estradas, Departamento de Biologia, Universidade Federal de Lavras, Campus Universitário, 37200-000 Lavras, Minas Gerais (Brazil); Ferreira, Flavio Zanchetta; Revilla, Eloy [Departamento de Biología de la Conservación, Estación Biológica de Doñana (EBD-CSIC), Calle Américo Vespucio s/n, E-41092 Sevilla (Spain)

    2015-11-15

    Previous studies have found that the relationship between wildlife road mortality and traffic volume follows a threshold effect on low traffic volume roads. We aimed at evaluating the response of several species to increasing traffic intensity on highways over a large geographic area and temporal period. We used data of four terrestrial vertebrate species with different biological and ecological features known by their high road-kill rates: the barn owl (Tyto alba), hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus), red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Additionally, we checked whether road-kill likelihood varies when traffic patterns depart from the average. We used annual average daily traffic (AADT) and road-kill records observed along 1000 km of highways in Portugal over seven consecutive years (2003–2009). We fitted candidate models using Generalized Linear Models with a binomial distribution through a sample unit of 1 km segments to describe the effect of traffic on the probability of finding at least one victim in each segment during the study. We also assigned for each road-kill record the traffic of that day and the AADT on that year to test for differences using Paired Student's t-test. Mortality risk declined significantly with traffic volume but varied among species: the probability of finding road-killed red foxes and rabbits occurs up to moderate traffic volumes (< 20,000 AADT) whereas barn owls and hedgehogs occurred up to higher traffic volumes (40,000 AADT). Perception of risk may explain differences in responses towards high traffic highway segments. Road-kill rates did not vary significantly when traffic intensity departed from the average. In summary, we did not find evidence of traffic thresholds for the analysed species and traffic intensities. We suggest mitigation measures to reduce mortality be applied in particular on low traffic roads (< 5000 AADT) while additional measures to reduce barrier effects should take into

  14. Spanish juniper gain expansion opportunities by counting on a functionally diverse dispersal assemblage community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escribano-Ávila, Gema; Pías, Beatriz; Sanz-Pérez, Virginia; Virgós, Emilio; Escudero, Adrián; Valladares, Fernando

    2013-10-01

    Seed dispersal is typically performed by a diverse array of species assemblages with different behavioral and morphological traits which determine dispersal quality (DQ, defined as the probability of recruitment of a dispersed seed). Fate of ecosystems to ongoing environmental changes is critically dependent on dispersal and mainly on DQ in novel scenarios. We assess here the DQ, thus the multiplicative effect of germination and survival probability to the first 3 years of life, for seeds dispersed by several bird species (Turdus spp.) and carnivores (Vulpes vulpes, Martes foina) in mature woodland remnants of Spanish juniper (Juniperus thurifera) and old fields which are being colonized by this species. Results showed that DQ was similar in mature woodlands and old fields. Germination rate for seeds dispersed by carnivores (11.5%) and thrushes (9.12%) was similar, however, interacted with microhabitat suitability. Seeds dispersed by carnivores reach the maximum germination rate on shrubs (16%), whereas seeds dispersed by thrushes did on female juniper canopies (15.5) indicating that each group of dispersers performed a directed dispersal. This directional effect was diluted when survival probability was considered: thrushes selected smaller seeds which had higher mortality in the seedling stage (70%) in relation to seedlings dispersed by carnivores (40%). Overall, thrushes resulted low-quality dispersers which provided a probability or recruitment of 2.5%, while a seed dispersed by carnivores had a probability of recruitment of 6.5%. Our findings show that generalist dispersers (i.e., carnivores) can provide a higher probability of recruitment than specialized dispersers (i.e., Turdus spp.). However, generalist species are usually opportunistic dispersers as their role as seed dispersers is dependent on the availability of trophic resources and species feeding preferences. As a result, J. thurifera dispersal community is composed by two functional groups of

  15. The small mammals of an upper piedmontese Po plain site (Leinì, Turin prov. / La micromammalofauna di una stazione planiziaria piemontese

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Osella

    1986-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The 24 small mammals listed as living in Leinì (Piedmontese Po plain, near Turin, 245 m on sea level (only the red fox, Vulpes vulpes is not sure, are briefly analysed (Chiroptera excepted. List and analysis are the results of studies pursued for about 35 years. However, in Verona's Museum of Natural History, the housed materials are related to the last eighteen years (1966-1984 (Tab. I. For a complete analysis, this fauna is compared with the Veronese Po plain one, especially with the Busatello one (Gazzo Veronese-Ostiglia. This site is a stretch of marshes named "Valli Grandi Veronesi and Ostigliesi" (Tab. II. In this analysis, if we don't consider the not native species (Myocastor coypus and Mustela vison, the estinguished species (Lutra lutra, the Mediterranean species (living only along the border of the Po plain basin (Suncus etruscus and the hunting species (Lepus europaeus and Oryctolagus cuniculus we have 23 taxa for Lein and only 17 and 13, respectively, for Veronese Po plain and Busatello. The richer small mammal fauna of the Piedmontese Po plain is, above all, supported by different ecological conditions but the preservation of some species (e.g. Glis glis and Muscardinus avellanarius in Leinì is surely related also to historical problems and to a land anthropization pushed forward to a lesser degree. Riassunto Vengono elencate e brevemente commentate tutte le specie di micromammiferi presenti a Leinì (Torino, Chirotteri esclusi. Si tratta di un complesso di 24 specie (solo la volpe non è del tutto sicura per ognuna delle quali gli autori, sinteticamente, espongono le osservazioni raccolte in circa 35 anni. A maggior chiarimento del significato faunistico del popolamento, viene presa in esame anche la micromammalofauna della pianura padano veneta, precisamente la pianura veronese ed in particolar modo la

  16. Interactions between fauna and environment in recent alluvial soils (Dunajec River, SE Poland)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikuś, Paweł; Uchman, Alfred

    2017-04-01

    Recent riverine system is a particular place for interactions between fauna and the deposited sediments containing young and old alluvial soils. It is characterized by large energy gradients in relatively short time, which forces special adaptations of burrowing animals recorded in bioturbation structures. Predators produce mainly shelter burrows (interpreted as domichnia), and saprofags, especially earthworms, produce locomotion and feeding structures (pascichnia). Such structures have been studied in non- or poorly vegetated, sandy or muddy Holocene alluvia in the lower reach of the Dunajec River flowing through the Carpathian Foredeep in SE Poland. The observed burrows are mostly produced by a variety of organisms, including the European mole (Talpa europaea), common earthworm (Lumbricus terrestris), ground beetles (Carabidae), solitary bees (Ammophila), red fox (Vulpes vulpes), European beaver (Castor fiber), shrews (Soricidae), European otter (Lutra lutra), several species of mice (Muridae), voles (Myodae, Microtae), and the swallow sand martin (Riparia riparia). Burrows of a few species of ground beetles have been subjected to more detailed studies. Fertile deposits of older (early to middle Holocene) terraces, formed with many long-term interruptions in sedimentation processes, have a well-developed soil levels, more vulnerable to burrowing than recently deposited sediments. The terraces contain layers of sands and muds, which primary sedimentary structures and layer boundaries are completely or partly disturbed by bioturbation. Organic-rich muds have been moved up and down and mixed with sand. Moreover, sediments have been leached into open burrows during floods or rainfalls. In the natural levee sediments, mostly fine to medium sands, are horizontally burrowed, foremost by earthworms (Lumbricidae). Vertical, long (over 2 m deep) burrows of larger earthworms cross cut the natural levee sediments and enter buried soils. They were formed during a long period

  17. Piroplasmosis in wildlife: Babesia and Theileria affecting free-ranging ungulates and carnivores in the Italian Alps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanet, Stefania; Trisciuoglio, Anna; Bottero, Elisa; de Mera, Isabel Garcia Fernández; Gortazar, Christian; Carpignano, Maria Grazia; Ferroglio, Ezio

    2014-02-17

    Piroplasmosis are among the most relevant diseases of domestic animals. Babesia is emerging as cause of tick-borne zoonosis worldwide and free-living animals are reservoir hosts of several zoonotic Babesia species. We investigated the epidemiology of Babesia spp. and Theileria spp. in wild ungulates and carnivores from Northern Italy to determine which of these apicomplexan species circulate in wildlife and their prevalence of infection. PCR amplification of the V4 hyper-variable region of the 18S rDNA of Babesia sp./Theileria sp was carried out on spleen samples of 1036 wild animals: Roe deer Capreolus capreolus (n = 462), Red deer Cervus elaphus (n = 52), Alpine Chamois Rupicapra rupicapra (n = 36), Fallow deer Dama dama (n = 17), Wild boar Sus scrofa (n = 257), Red fox Vulpes vulpes (n = 205) and Wolf Canis lupus (n = 7). Selected positive samples were sequenced to determine the species of amplified Babesia/Theileria DNA. Babesia/Theileria DNA was found with a mean prevalence of 9.94% (IC95% 8.27-11.91). The only piroplasms found in carnivores was Theileria annae, which was detected in two foxes (0.98%; IC95% 0.27-3.49). Red deer showed the highest prevalence of infection (44.23%; IC95% 31.6-57.66), followed by Alpine chamois (22.22%; IC95% 11.71-38.08), Roe deer (12.55%; IC95% 9.84-15.89), and Wild boar (4.67%; IC95% 2.69-7.98). Genetic analysis identified Babesia capreoli as the most prevalent piroplasmid found in Alpine chamois, Roe deer and Red deer, followed by Babesia bigemina (found in Roe deer, Red deer and Wild boar), and the zoonotic Babesia venatorum (formerly Babesia sp. EU1) isolated from 2 Roe deer. Piroplasmids of the genus Theileria were identified in Wild boar and Red deer. The present study offers novel insights into the role of wildlife in Babesia/Theileria epidemiology, as well as relevant information on genetic variability of piroplasmids infecting wild ungulates and carnivores.

  18. No evidence of a threshold in traffic volume affecting road-kill mortality at a large spatio-temporal scale

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grilo, Clara; Ferreira, Flavio Zanchetta; Revilla, Eloy

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have found that the relationship between wildlife road mortality and traffic volume follows a threshold effect on low traffic volume roads. We aimed at evaluating the response of several species to increasing traffic intensity on highways over a large geographic area and temporal period. We used data of four terrestrial vertebrate species with different biological and ecological features known by their high road-kill rates: the barn owl (Tyto alba), hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus), red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Additionally, we checked whether road-kill likelihood varies when traffic patterns depart from the average. We used annual average daily traffic (AADT) and road-kill records observed along 1000 km of highways in Portugal over seven consecutive years (2003–2009). We fitted candidate models using Generalized Linear Models with a binomial distribution through a sample unit of 1 km segments to describe the effect of traffic on the probability of finding at least one victim in each segment during the study. We also assigned for each road-kill record the traffic of that day and the AADT on that year to test for differences using Paired Student's t-test. Mortality risk declined significantly with traffic volume but varied among species: the probability of finding road-killed red foxes and rabbits occurs up to moderate traffic volumes (< 20,000 AADT) whereas barn owls and hedgehogs occurred up to higher traffic volumes (40,000 AADT). Perception of risk may explain differences in responses towards high traffic highway segments. Road-kill rates did not vary significantly when traffic intensity departed from the average. In summary, we did not find evidence of traffic thresholds for the analysed species and traffic intensities. We suggest mitigation measures to reduce mortality be applied in particular on low traffic roads (< 5000 AADT) while additional measures to reduce barrier effects should take into

  19. The prevalence and impact of Babesia canis and Theileria sp. in free-ranging grey wolf (Canis lupus) populations in Croatia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, Ana; Huber, Doroteja; Polkinghorne, Adam; Kurilj, Andrea Gudan; Benko, Valerija; Mrljak, Vladimir; Reljić, Slaven; Kusak, Josip; Reil, Irena; Beck, Relja

    2017-04-04

    Babesia spp. and Theileria spp. are important emerging causes of disease in dogs. Alongside these domesticated hosts, there is increasing recognition that these piroplasms can also be found in a range of wild animals with isolated reports describing the presence of these pathogen in foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and captive grey wolves (Canis lupus). The prevalence and impact of these infections in free-ranging populations of canids are unknown. To gain a better insight into the epidemiology and pathogenesis of piroplasm infections in free-ranging grey wolves, pathological and molecular investigations into captive and free-ranging grey wolves in Croatia were performed. The carcasses of 107 free-ranging wolves and one captive wolf were the subjects of post-mortem investigations and sampling for molecular studies. A blood sample from one live captured wolf for telemetric tracking was also used for molecular analysis. PCR amplification targeting the 18S RNA gene revealed that 21 of 108 free-ranging wolves and one captive animal were positive for Theileria/Babesia DNA. Subsequent sequencing of a fragment of the 18S RNA gene revealed that 7/22 animals were positive for Babesia canis while the other amplified sequence were found to be identical with corresponding 18S rDNA sequences of Theileria capreoli isolated from wild deer (15/22). Haematological and cytological analysis revealed the presence of signet-ring shaped or pear-shaped piroplasms in several animals with the overall parasite burden in all positive animals assessed to be very low. Pathological investigation of the captive animal revealed fatal septicemia as a likely outcome of hemolytic anaemia. There was little or no evidence of hemolytic disease consistent with babesiosis in other animals. Importantly, the presence of B. canis in free-ranging grey wolves has not been described before but has been reported in a single fox and domestic dogs only. That B. canis infections cause disease in dogs but have little impact

  20. Endangered Species Program, Naval Petroleum Reserves in California

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-12-01

    Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 1 (NPR-1) is operated by the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Chevron USA (CUSA). Four federally-listed endangered animal species and one federally-threatened plant species are known to occur on the Naval Petroleum Reserves in California (NPRC): the San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes velox macrotis), blunt-nosed leopard lizard (Gambelia silus), giant kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ingens), Tipton kangaroo rat (Dipodomys nitratoides nitratoides), and Hoover's wooly-star (Eriastrum hooveri). All five are protected under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (as amended) (Public Law 93-205), which declaresthat it is the policy of Congress that all Federal departments and agencies shall seek to conserve endangered and threatened species and shall utilize their authorities in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. DOE is also obliged to determine whether actions taken by their lessees on Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 2 (NPR-2) will have any effects on endangered species or their habitats. The major objective of the EG ampersand G Energy Measurements, Inc. Endangered Species Program on NPR-1 and NPR-2 is to provide DOE with the scientific expertise and continuity of programs necessary for continued compliance with the Endangered SpeciesAct. The specific objective of this report is to summarize progress and results of the Endangered Species Program made during Fiscal Year 1992 (FY92)

  1. Study of macro and microelements in fish from the Cienfuegos Bay. Relationship with its content in sediments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña-Icart, M; Rodrigues Pereira-Filho, E; Lopes Fialho, L; Nóbrega, J A; Alonso-Hernández, C; Bolaños-Alvarez, Y; Muñoz-Caravaca, A; Pomares-Alfonso, M S

    2017-09-01

    Thirteen microelements (Al, As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Ni, Ti, V, and Zn) and four macroelements (Ca, K, Mg, and Na) were determined in the edible muscle tissue of fish in Cienfuegos Bay. Eight species, Albula vulpes, Diapterus rhombeus, Gerres cinereus, Haemulon carbonarium, Haemulon sciurus, Micropogonias furnieri, Kyphosus sectatrix, and Lutjanus cyanopterus were studied. The total concentrations and extracted concentrations using HCl were also determined in sediments. The quality of the analysis was guaranteed by validating the used analytical methods with certified reference materials of fish and sediments. The high content of macroelements confirmed the importance of fish as a valuable source of food for the local population. New information is provided on bioaccumulation of toxic elements As, Cd, Cu, Zn, and Cr in fish of the bay, with concentrations that overcame the local or international maximum allowable levels for human consumption in most samples analyzed. A high correlation between the content of toxic elements As, Cd, Zn, and macroelement K in fish and its concentration extracted from sediments using the HCl extraction method was observed.

  2. Predation on seabirds by red foxes at Shaiak Island, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, M.R.

    1982-01-01

    Two Red Foxes (Vulpes fulva) that invaded Shaiak Island before the 1976 nesting season had a marked impact on the nesting success of five of seven species of seabirds breeding on the island that year. Common Eiders (Somateria mollissima), Glaucous-winged Gulls (Larus glaucescens), and Common Murres (Uria aalge), that nest in areas accessible to foxes, did not raise any young to fledging. Double-crested Cormorants (Phalacrocorax auritus) were only slightly more successful; 13 (4.3%) of 300 pairs raised one or more young to fledging. Evidence suggested that 21 (35.6%) of 62 pairs of Tufted Puffins (Lunda cirrhata) lost eggs or chicks to foxes, and foxes killed at least 13 (8.3%) of 156 adult puffins on ten sample plots. Conversely, Black-Legged Kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) and Pelagic Cormorants (Phalacrocorax pelagicus), which nested primarily on cliffs inaccessible to foxes, lost very few nests. There was no apparent change in general nest site selections by seabirds the following year, when foxes were no longer present. Any avoidance by birds of areas vulnerable to fox predation would probably be discernible only after several years of continuous predation.

  3. Age-specific survival of reintroduced swift fox in Badlands National Park and surrounding lands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasmal, Indrani; Klaver, Robert W.; Jenks, Jonathan A.; Schroeder, Greg M.

    2016-01-01

    In 2003, a reintroduction program was initiated at Badlands National Park (BNP), South Dakota, USA, with swift foxes (Vulpes velox) translocated from Colorado and Wyoming, USA, as part of a restoration effort to recover declining swift fox populations throughout its historical range. Estimates of age-specific survival are necessary to evaluate the potential for population growth of reintroduced populations. We used 7 years (2003–2009) of capture–recapture data of 243 pups, 29 yearlings, and 69 adult swift foxes at BNP and the surrounding area to construct Cormack–Jolly–Seber model estimates of apparent survival within a capture–mark–recapture framework using Program MARK. The best model for estimating recapture probabilities included no differences among age classes, greater recapture probabilities during early years of the monitoring effort than later years, and variation among spring, winter, and summer. Our top ranked survival model indicated pup survival differed from that of yearlings and adults and varied by month and year. The apparent annual survival probability of pups (0.47, SE = 0.10) in our study area was greater than the apparent annual survival probability of yearlings and adults (0.27, SE = 0.08). Our results indicate low survival probabilities for a reintroduced population of swift foxes in the BNP and surrounding areas. Management of reintroduced populations and future reintroductions of swift foxes should consider the effects of relative low annual survival on population demography.

  4. Uncertainties in ecological epidemiology: A cautionary tale featuring kit foxes and oil fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suter, G.W. II

    1993-01-01

    Ecological epidemiology, like human epidemiology, often must employ encountered rather than statistically designed data set and must make comparisons among populations that differ in terms of various poorly defined confounding variables. These properties can result in false positive or false negative results if statistics are naively applied. The case in point is a study of a population of an endangered subspecies, the San Joaquin Kit Fox (Vulpes macrotis mutica), inhabiting an oil field. The fox population abundance declined sharply following an increase in oil development until it was virtually absent from the developed portion of the field. It was decided that the possibility of toxicological effects would be investigated by analyzing historic and current hair samples. Metal concentrations were found to be statistically significantly higher for foxes from the developed area compared with those from undeveloped areas of the field. However, analysis of fur from two areas remote from oil fields and from another oil field indicated that the foxes from the developed portions of the subject oil field were not unusually metalliferous but that the foxes from the undeveloped portions were unusually low in metals. The conclusions of this study will be used to draw lessons for the design of studies in ecological epidemiology

  5. Physiological constraints and latitudinal breeding season in the Canidae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdespino, Carolina

    2007-01-01

    Physiological strategies that maximize reproductive success may be phylogenetically constrained or might have a plastic response to different environmental conditions. Among mammals, Canidae lend themselves to the study of these two influences on reproductive physiology because all the species studied to date have been characterized as monestrous (i.e., a single ovulatory event per breeding season), suggesting a phylogenetic effect. Greater flexibility could be associated with environments that are less seasonal, such as the tropics; however, little is known for many of the species from this region. To compensate for this lack of data, two regressions were done on the length of the reproductive season relative to the latitudinal distribution of a species: one with raw data and another with phylogenetically independent contrasts. There was a significant negative relationship, independent of phylogeny, with canids that have longer breeding seasons occurring at lower latitudes. In contrast, the pervasiveness of monestrus within Canidae appears to be phylogenetically constrained by their pairing/packing life and is most likely associated with monogamy. The persistence of the monestrous condition is supported by a captive study where a tropical canid, the fennec fox, Vulpes zerda, never exhibited polyestrous cycles despite a constant photoperiod (12L : 12D).

  6. Emission Changes Dwarf the Influence of Feeding Habits on Temporal Trends of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Two Arctic Top Predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Routti, Heli; Aars, Jon; Fuglei, Eva; Hanssen, Linda; Lone, Karen; Polder, Anuschka; Pedersen, Åshild Ø; Tartu, Sabrina; Welker, Jeffrey M; Yoccoz, Nigel G

    2017-10-17

    We monitored concentrations of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) in relation to climate-associated changes in feeding habits and food availability in polar bears (Ursus maritimus) and arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) (192 plasma and 113 liver samples, respectively) sampled from Svalbard, Norway, during 1997-2014. PFASs concentrations became greater with increasing dietary trophic level, as bears and foxes consumed more marine as opposed to terrestrial food, and as the availability of sea ice habitat increased. Long-chained perfluoroalkyl carboxylates (PFCAs) in arctic foxes decreased with availability of reindeer carcasses. The ∼9-14% yearly decline of C 6-8 perfluoroalkyl sulfonates (PFSAs) following the cease in C 6-8 PFSA precursor production in 2001 indicates that the peak exposure was mainly a result of atmospheric transport of the volatile precursors. However, the stable PFSA concentrations since 2009-2010 suggest that Svalbard biota is still exposed to ocean-transported PFSAs. Long-chain ocean-transported PFCAs increased 2-4% per year and the increase in C 12-14 PFCAs in polar bears tended to level off since ∼2009. Emerging short-chain PFASs showed no temporal changes. Climate-related changes in feeding habits and food availability moderately affected PFAS trends. Our results indicate that PFAS concentrations in polar bears and arctic foxes are mainly affected by emissions.

  7. Spatio-temporal hotspots of satellite-tracked arctic foxes reveal a large detection range in a mammalian predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Sandra; Bêty, Joël; Berteaux, Dominique

    2015-01-01

    The scale at which animals perceive their environment is a strong fitness determinant, yet few empirical estimates of animal detection ranges exist, especially in mammalian predators. Using daily Argos satellite tracking of 26 adult arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) during a single winter in the High Canadian Arctic, we investigated the detection range of arctic foxes by detecting hotspots of fox activity on the sea ice. While maintaining territories in the tundra, these solitary foragers occasionally used the sea ice where they sometimes formed spatio-temporal hotspots, likely scavenging on marine mammal carcasses. We detected 35 movements by 13 individuals forming five hotspots. Foxes often traveled more than 10 km, and up to 40 km, to reach hotspots, which lasted one-two weeks and could gather up to 12 individuals. The likelihood of a fox joining a hotspot was neither influenced by its distance from the hotspot nor by the distance of its home range to the coast. Observed traveling distances may indicate a high detection range in arctic foxes, and our results suggest their ability to detect food sources on the sea ice from their terrestrial home range. While revealing a wide knowledge gap regarding resource detection abilities in mammalian predators, our study provides estimates of detection range useful for interpreting and modeling animal movements. It also allows a better understanding of foraging behavior and navigation capacity in terrestrial predators.

  8. Endangered Species Program Naval Petroleum Reserves in California

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-03-01

    The Naval Petroleum Reserves in California (NPRC) are operated by the US Department of Energy (DOE) and Chevron USA. (CUSA). Four federally-listed endangered animal species and one threatened plant species are known to occur on NPRC: the San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes macrotis mutica), blunt-nosed leopard lizard (Gambelia), giant kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ingens), Tipton kangaroo rat (Dipodomys nitratoides nitratoides) and Hoover's Wooly-star (Eriastrum hooveri). All five are protected under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (as amended) (Public Law 93-205), which declares that it is the policy of Congress that all Federal departments and agencies shall seek to conserve endangered and threatened species and shall utilize their authorities in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. DOE is also obliged to determine whether actions taken by their lessees on Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 2 (NPR-2) will have any effects on endangered species or their habitats. The major objective of the Endangered Species Program on NPR-1 and NPR-2 is to provide DOE with the scientific expertise and continuity of programs necessary for the continued compliance with the Endangered Species Act. The specific objective of this report is to summarize progress and results of the Endangered Species Program made during Fiscal Year 1991 (FY91)

  9. Pulses of movement across the sea ice: population connectivity and temporal genetic structure in the arctic fox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norén, Karin; Carmichael, Lindsey; Fuglei, Eva; Eide, Nina E; Hersteinsson, Pall; Angerbjörn, Anders

    2011-08-01

    Lemmings are involved in several important functions in the Arctic ecosystem. The Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) can be divided into two discrete ecotypes: "lemming foxes" and "coastal foxes". Crashes in lemming abundance can result in pulses of "lemming fox" movement across the Arctic sea ice and immigration into coastal habitats in search for food. These pulses can influence the genetic structure of the receiving population. We have tested the impact of immigration on the genetic structure of the "coastal fox" population in Svalbard by recording microsatellite variation in seven loci for 162 Arctic foxes sampled during the summer and winter over a 5-year period. Genetic heterogeneity and temporal genetic shifts, as inferred by STRUCTURE simulations and deviations from Hardy-Weinberg proportions, respectively, were recorded. Maximum likelihood estimates of movement as well as STRUCTURE simulations suggested that both immigration and genetic mixture are higher in Svalbard than in the neighbouring "lemming fox" populations. The STRUCTURE simulations and AMOVA revealed there are differences in genetic composition of the population between summer and winter seasons, indicating that immigrants are not present in the reproductive portion of the Svalbard population. Based on these results, we conclude that Arctic fox population structure varies with time and is influenced by immigration from neighbouring populations. The lemming cycle is likely an important factor shaping Arctic fox movement across sea ice and the subsequent population genetic structure, but is also likely to influence local adaptation to the coastal habitat and the prevalence of diseases.

  10. Estimating fish swimming metrics and metabolic rates with accelerometers: the influence of sampling frequency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownscombe, J W; Lennox, R J; Danylchuk, A J; Cooke, S J

    2018-06-21

    Accelerometry is growing in popularity for remotely measuring fish swimming metrics, but appropriate sampling frequencies for accurately measuring these metrics are not well studied. This research examined the influence of sampling frequency (1-25 Hz) with tri-axial accelerometer biologgers on estimates of overall dynamic body acceleration (ODBA), tail-beat frequency, swimming speed and metabolic rate of bonefish Albula vulpes in a swim-tunnel respirometer and free-swimming in a wetland mesocosm. In the swim tunnel, sampling frequencies of ≥ 5 Hz were sufficient to establish strong relationships between ODBA, swimming speed and metabolic rate. However, in free-swimming bonefish, estimates of metabolic rate were more variable below 10 Hz. Sampling frequencies should be at least twice the maximum tail-beat frequency to estimate this metric effectively, which is generally higher than those required to estimate ODBA, swimming speed and metabolic rate. While optimal sampling frequency probably varies among species due to tail-beat frequency and swimming style, this study provides a reference point with a medium body-sized sub-carangiform teleost fish, enabling researchers to measure these metrics effectively and maximize study duration. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  11. The Punta Lucero Quarry site (Zierbena, Bizkaia): a window into the Middle Pleistocene in the Northern Iberian Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Sala, Nohemi; Arceredillo, Diego; García, Nuria; Martínez-Pillado, Virginia; Rios-Garaizar, Joseba; Garate, Diego; Solar, Gonzalo; Libano, Iñaki

    2015-08-01

    The period between the end of the Early Pleistocene and the mid-Middle Pleistocene (roughly between 1.0 and 0.4 Ma BP) is of great interest in Western Europe. It witnessed several climatic oscillations and changes in the fauna, the demise of a hominin species and the appearance of another, along with important cultural and technological changes. Thus, the few available sites with these chronologies is vital to the understanding of the tempo and mode of these changes. Middle Pleistocene sites in the Northern Iberian Peninsula are very rare. Here we present the study of the site found at the Punta Lucero Quarry (Biscay province, Northern Iberian Peninsula), which includes for the first time the complete collection from the site. The fossil association from this site includes several ungulates, such as a Megacerine deer, Cervus elaphus, large bovids (likely both Bos primigenius and Bison sp. are present), Stephanorhinus sp., and carnivores, such as Homotherium latidens, Panthera gombaszoegensis, Canis mosbachensis and Vulpes sp. This association is typical of a middle Middle Pleistocene chronology and would be the oldest macro-mammal site in the Eastern Cantabrian region. This site would likely correspond to a chronology after Mode 1 technological complex and before the arrival of Mode 2 technology in this region. Thus, it offers a glimpse into the paleoecological conditions slightly prior to or contemporaneous with the first Acheulian makers in the northern fringe of the Iberian Peninsula.

  12. Carnivoran remains from the Malapa hominin site, South Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian F Kuhn

    Full Text Available Recent discoveries at the new hominin-bearing deposits of Malapa, South Africa, have yielded a rich faunal assemblage associated with the newly described hominin taxon Australopithecus sediba. Dating of this deposit using U-Pb and palaeomagnetic methods has provided an age of 1.977 Ma, being one of the most accurately dated, time constrained deposits in the Plio-Pleistocene of southern Africa. To date, 81 carnivoran specimens have been identified at this site including members of the families Canidae, Viverridae, Herpestidae, Hyaenidae and Felidae. Of note is the presence of the extinct taxon Dinofelis cf. D. barlowi that may represent the last appearance date for this species. Extant large carnivores are represented by specimens of leopard (Panthera pardus and brown hyaena (Parahyaena brunnea. Smaller carnivores are also represented, and include the genera Atilax and Genetta, as well as Vulpes cf. V. chama. Malapa may also represent the first appearance date for Felis nigripes (Black-footed cat. The geochronological age of Malapa and the associated hominin taxa and carnivoran remains provide a window of research into mammalian evolution during a relatively unknown period in South Africa and elsewhere. In particular, the fauna represented at Malapa has the potential to elucidate aspects of the evolution of Dinofelis and may help resolve competing hypotheses about faunal exchange between East and Southern Africa during the late Pliocene or early Pleistocene.

  13. Molecular Detection of Theileria spp. in Livestock on Five Caribbean Islands

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    Jilei Zhang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Theileria spp. are tick-transmitted, intracellular apicomplexan protozoan parasites infecting a wide range of animals. As there is very limited information on the prevalence of Theileria spp. in the Caribbean we used the recently described genus-specific pan-Theileria FRET-qPCR to identify infected animals in the region and a standard 18S rRNA gene PCR and sequencing to determine the species involved. We found Theileria spp. in 9% of the convenience samples of animals (n=752 studied from five Caribbean islands. Donkeys (20.0%: 5/25 were most commonly infected, followed by sheep (17.4%, 25/144, cattle (6.8%; 22/325, goats (5.0%; 12/238, and horses (5.0%; 1/20. Six species of Theileria were identified: T. equi (donkeys, cattle, goats, and sheep, Theileria sp. OT3 (sheep and goats, Theileria sp. NG-2013a (cattle, Theileria sp. YW-2014 (donkeys, Theileria sp. B15a (goats, and Babesia vulpes or a closely related organism (sheep and goats. Only T. equi has been previously reported in the Caribbean. Our findings expand the known host ranges of Theileria spp. and the known distribution of the organisms around the world.

  14. Sand Floor for Farmed Blue Foxes: Effects on Claws, Adrenal Cortex Function, Growth and Fur Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leena Ahola

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Farmed blue foxes (Vulpes lagopus are traditionally housed on mesh floors where they are unable to perform certain species-specific behaviours, such as digging, which may compromise the animals' welfare. This study describes how a possibility to use in-cage sand floor affects welfare-related variables like growth of the claws, adrenal cortex function, and fur properties in juvenile blue foxes. The foxes (N=32 were housed in male-female sibling pairs in an outdoor fur animal shed in cage systems consisting of two traditional fox cages. For the eight male-female sibling pairs of the Control group, there was a mesh floor in both cages of each cage system, whereas for the eight pairs of the Sand group there was a mesh floor in one cage and a 30–40 cm deep earth floor in the other cage. The results show that sand floor is beneficial for the wearing of the claws of foxes. Furthermore, an early experience of sand floor may have positive effects on the foxes' fur development. The results, however, also suggest that there might appear welfare problems observed as disturbed claw growth and increased adrenal cortex activation if foxes that are once provided with clean and unfrozen sand floor are not allowed to enjoy this floor all the time.

  15. Effects of Intraguild Predation: Evaluating Resource Competition between Two Canid Species with Apparent Niche Separation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam J. Kozlowski

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Many studies determine which habitat components are important to animals and the extent their use may overlap with competitive species. However, such studies are often undertaken after populations are in decline or under interspecific stress. Since habitat selection is not independent of interspecific stress, quantifying an animal's current landscape use could be misleading if the species distribution is suboptimal. We present an alternative approach by modeling the predicted distributions of two sympatric species on the landscape using dietary preferences and prey distribution. We compared the observed habitat use of kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis and coyotes (Canis latrans against their predicted distribution. Data included locations of kit foxes and coyotes, carnivore scat transects, and seasonal prey surveys. Although habitats demonstrated heterogeneity with respect to prey resources, only coyotes showed habitat use designed to maximize access to prey. In contrast, kit foxes used habitats which did not align closely with prey resources. Instead, habitat use by kit foxes represented spatial and behavioral strategies designed to minimize spatial overlap with coyotes while maximizing access to resources. Data on the distribution of prey, their dietary importance, and the species-specific disparities between predicted and observed habitat distributions supports a mechanism by which kit fox distribution is derived from intense competitive interactions with coyotes.

  16. Further observations on rangiferine brucellosis in Alaskan carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neiland, K A

    1975-01-01

    Antibodies against rangiferine brucellosis, Brucella suis type 4, are commonly found in the serum of various domestic and wild alaskian carnivores which feed on caribou, Rangifer tarandus granti, arctic Alaska. Sled dogs from five native villages on the range of the Artic caribou herd, but not from two villages on the the range of the Porcupine caribou herd, are commonly infected. Wolves (Canis lupus) and red foxes (Vulpes fulva) are less commonly infected. About 90% of the grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horribilis) associated with the Artic caribou herd and 30% of those associated with the porcupine caribou herd show serologic signs of exposure to Brucella, presumalby the enzootic strain present in Alaska caribou. This is the first evidence of natural Brucella infection in bears. It is concluded that infection of predators by enzootic strains of Brucella present in prey species (e.g., ruminants) is common to many areas of the world. Evidence from the literature and unpublished experimental data suggest that such infections may intefere with reproduction in wild species, but additional study is needed to clearly resolve this question.

  17. Red fox predation on breeding ducks in midcontinent North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sargeant, Alan B.; Allen, Stephen H.; Eberhardt, Robert T.

    1984-01-01

    Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) predation on nesting ducks was assessed by examining 1,857 adult duck remains found at 1,432 fox rearing dens from 1968 to 1973. Dabbling ducks were much more vulnerable to foxes than diving ducks. Dabbling ducks (1,798) found at dens consisted of 27% blue-winged teals (Anas discors), 23% mallards (A. platyrhynchos), 20% northern pintails (A. acuta), 9% northern shovelers (Spatula clypeata), 8% gadwalls (A. strepera), 3% green-winged teals (A. crecca), 2% American wigeons (A. americana), and 10% unidentified. Relative abundance of individual species and nesting chronology were the most important factors affecting composition of ducks taken by foxes. Seventy-six percent of 1,376 adult dabbling ducks and 40% of 30 adult diving ducks for which sex was determined were hens. In western North Dakota and western South Dakota, 65% of mallard and northern pintail remains found at dens were hens compared with 76% in eastern North Dakota and eastern South Dakota (P fox predation rates on ducks. Predation rate indices ranged from 0.01 duck/den in Iowa to 1.80 ducks/den in eastern North Dakota. Average annual predation rate indices for dabbling ducks in a 3-county intensive study area in eastern North Dakota were closely correlated with May pond numbers (r = 0.874, P foxes than hens of late nesting species. Predation rate indices were expanded to estimate total numbers of ducks taken by fox families during the denning season. Estimated numbers of dabbling ducks taken annually by individual fox families in 2 physiographic regions comprising the intensive study area ranged from 16.1 to 65.9. Predation was highest during wet years and lowest during dry years and averaged lower, but was more variable, in the region where tillage was greatest and wetland water levels were least stable. Predation in the intensive study area averaged 2.97 adult dabbling ducks/ km2/year and represented an estimated average annual loss of 13.5% of hen and 4.5% of drake

  18. Distribution and ecology of Dormice (Myoxidae in Sicily: a preliminary account

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    Maurizio Sarà

    1995-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Three dormouse species are recorded in Sicily: Myoxus glis, Muscardinus avellanarius and Eliomys quercinus. Their distribution is mapped according to the 10 x 10 km squares of the UTM grid. Data were collected until May 1993, mostly coming from pellet analysis, and direct records (vocalization listening, museum specimens, field observations, literature, etc.. The Fat dormouse (5.3% of 10 x 10 km squares and the Hazel dormouse (2.1% are mainly localized within deciduous wooded areas like the beech forests and the hazel groves mixed with oaks and chestnuts of Nebrodi and Madonie. The Fat dormouse is also present in south-eastern Sicily (Monti Iblei and on in Eolian island (Salina. The Garden dormouse shows the widest distribution (21.2%, ranging from sea level to the beech forests (1600 m a.s.1.. Dormice are rarely preyed upon by Owls in Sicily, generally forming less than 1.5% of the total prey, with the exception the Fat dormouse (5.3%. Other occasional predators, so far recorded, are the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes and the Lanner (Falco biarmicus. Hibernation regularly occurs at high altitudes, but seems to be absent or curtailed in the warm habitats below 500 m a.s.1. Riassunto Distribuzione ed ecologia dei Mioxidi in Sicilia: dati preliminari - Tre specie di Mioxidi vivono in Sicilia (Myoxus glis, Muscardinus avellanarius, Eliomys quercinus. Storicamente (1850 essi erano presenti nelle principali aree boscate (Nebrodi, Madonie, Etna, solo nella metà di questo secolo, il Ghiro ed il Quercino furono scoperti alle isole Eolie (Salina e Lipari. Si riporta la carta di distribuzione di ogni specie (griglia UTM, 100 kmq ricavata dall'analisi della dieta di predatori, osservazioni dirette, trappolamenti ed esemplari citati in bibliografia o conservati nei musei. Il Ghiro (5,3% ed il Moscardino (2,1% sono localizzati nei

  19. Changes in the geographical distribution and abundance of the tick Ixodes ricinus during the past 30 years in Sweden

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    Jaenson Thomas GT

    2012-01-01

    respondents, the abundance of ticks had increased markedly in LB- and TBE-endemic areas in South (Götaland and Central Sweden. Conclusions The results suggest that I. ricinus has expanded its range in North Sweden and has become distinctly more abundant in Central and South Sweden during the last three decades. However, in the northern mountain region I. ricinus is still absent. The increased abundance of the tick can be explained by two main factors: First, the high availability of large numbers of important tick maintenance hosts, i.e., cervids, particularly roe deer (Capreolus capreolus during the last three decades. Second, a warmer climate with milder winters and a prolonged growing season that permits greater survival and proliferation over a larger geographical area of both the tick itself and deer. High reproductive potential of roe deer, high tick infestation rate and the tendency of roe deer to disperse great distances may explain the range expansion of I. ricinus and particularly the appearance of new TBEV foci far away from old TBEV-endemic localities. The geographical presence of LB in Sweden corresponds to the distribution of I. ricinus. Thus, LB is now an emerging disease risk in many parts of North Sweden. Unless countermeasures are undertaken to keep the deer populations, particularly C. capreolus and Dama dama, at the relatively low levels that prevailed before the late 1970s - especially in and around urban areas where human population density is high - by e.g. reduced hunting of red fox (Vulpes vulpes and lynx (Lynx lynx, the incidences of human LB and TBE are expected to continue to be high or even to increase in Sweden in coming decades.

  20. Changes in the geographical distribution and abundance of the tick Ixodes ricinus during the past 30 years in Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaenson, Thomas G T; Jaenson, David G E; Eisen, Lars; Petersson, Erik; Lindgren, Elisabet

    2012-01-10

    markedly in LB- and TBE-endemic areas in South (Götaland) and Central Sweden. The results suggest that I. ricinus has expanded its range in North Sweden and has become distinctly more abundant in Central and South Sweden during the last three decades. However, in the northern mountain region I. ricinus is still absent. The increased abundance of the tick can be explained by two main factors: First, the high availability of large numbers of important tick maintenance hosts, i.e., cervids, particularly roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) during the last three decades. Second, a warmer climate with milder winters and a prolonged growing season that permits greater survival and proliferation over a larger geographical area of both the tick itself and deer. High reproductive potential of roe deer, high tick infestation rate and the tendency of roe deer to disperse great distances may explain the range expansion of I. ricinus and particularly the appearance of new TBEV foci far away from old TBEV-endemic localities. The geographical presence of LB in Sweden corresponds to the distribution of I. ricinus. Thus, LB is now an emerging disease risk in many parts of North Sweden. Unless countermeasures are undertaken to keep the deer populations, particularly C. capreolus and Dama dama, at the relatively low levels that prevailed before the late 1970s--especially in and around urban areas where human population density is high--by e.g. reduced hunting of red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and lynx (Lynx lynx), the incidences of human LB and TBE are expected to continue to be high or even to increase in Sweden in coming decades.

  1. Linee guida per la gestione della Volpe in Italia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvano Toso

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available La plasticità ecologica della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes fa di questa specie il Carnivoro più diffuso e più adattabile al mondo. Proprio per la sua diffusione la Volpe è oggetto di un intenso prelievo sia venatorio, sia finalizzato a contenerne l'impatto predatorio ed allo sfruttamento commerciale della pelliccia. In Italia esiste una forte pressione dei cacciatori perché si realizzino programmi di controllo delle popolazioni di questo predatore, al fine di ridurne l'impatto sulle specie d'interesse cinegetico. Gli effetti del contenimento della Volpe sulla dinamica delle popolazioni di specie preda sono stati oggetto di numerosi studi, ma i risultati di tali ricerche non sono univoci; se in alcuni casi si è infatti verificato, in seguito a decrementi delle popolazioni di Volpe, un incremento di consistenza e successo riproduttivo delle specie preda, in altri casi non si è registrato alcun significativo effetto demografico. Ancora meno chiaro è quale sia la soglia di contrazione delle popolazioni di Volpe necessaria per ottenere un effetto significativo sulle popolazioni delle specie preda, considerato che questo Carnivoro ha un potenziale riproduttivo elevato ed un'organizzazione sociale che determina la rapida rioccupazione dei territori lasciati liberi. La legislazione italiana in materia di controllo è, rispetto ad altri paesi europei ed extraeuropei, particolarmente rigida: la legge n. 157/92 identifica infatti un obiettivo generale di mantenimento delle popolazioni dei predatori a livelli adeguati ad assicurare una funzione regolatrice delle biocenosi. La stessa norma impone inoltre che ogni intervento di abbattimento di predatori finalizzato al contenimento dei danni da essi arrecati sia autorizzato dalla Regione o dalla Provincia competente, sulla base di un parere tecnico dell'INFS che è chiamato a verificare l'inapplicabilità di metodi incruenti di prevenzione dei danni, la selettività delle tecniche di abbattimento e la

  2. Conservation reserve program: benefit for grassland birds in the northern plains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, R.E.; Shaffer, T.L.; Sauer, J.R.; Peterjohn, B.G.

    1994-01-01

    During the past few decades numbers of some species of upland-nesting birds in North America have declined. Duck species such as mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), northern pintail (A. acuta) and blue-winged teal (A. discors) have declined since the early 1970s and have remained low since 1985 (Caithamer et al. 1993). Some grassland-dependent nonwaterfowl species also have declined since 1966, as indicated by the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) (Robbins et al. 1986). For prairie-nesting ducks, population declines can be attributed mostly to low recruitment, partially as a result of low nest success. Klett et al. (1988) concluded that nest success (probability of ≥1 egg of clutch hatches) in much of the U.S. Prairie Pothole Region was inadequate to maintain populations of the five most common upland-nesting duck species studied, and that predators were the most important cause of nest failure. Over the years, as grassland areas have been converted to cropland, ducks have concentrated their nesting in the remaining areas of available habitat, where predators such as red fox (Vulpes vulpes), striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis) and badger (Taxidea taxus) forage (Cowardin et al. 1983). The reasons for declining populations of grassland nonwaterfowl birds are not clear but the loss of suitable grassland-nesting habitat probably is an important factor. Currently, approximately 95 percent of the land in North Dakota is used for agricultural purposes, of which over 60 percent is used for annual crop production (Haugse 1990). Of the grassland that remains, 95 percent is used for livestock production. This probably had a severe impact on grassland bird species that seek idle grass cover for nesting. The 1985 and 1990 U.S. Farm Bills include provisions under the Food Security Act to fund a cropland-idling program called the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). Over 36 million acres have been enrolled nationwide in the CRP since 1985 (Osborn 1993), and up to 25 percent of

  3. Integrating Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Ecological Science: a Question of Scale

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    Catherine A. Gagnon

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The benefits and challenges of integrating traditional ecological knowledge and scientific knowledge have led to extensive discussions over the past decades, but much work is still needed to facilitate the articulation and co-application of these two types of knowledge. Through two case studies, we examined the integration of traditional ecological knowledge and scientific knowledge by emphasizing their complementarity across spatial and temporal scales. We expected that combining Inuit traditional ecological knowledge and scientific knowledge would expand the spatial and temporal scales of currently documented knowledge on the arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus and the greater snow goose (Chen caerulescens atlantica, two important tundra species. Using participatory approaches in Mittimatalik (also known as Pond Inlet, Nunavut, Canada, we documented traditional ecological knowledge about these species and found that, in fact, it did expand the spatial and temporal scales of current scientific knowledge for local arctic fox ecology. However, the benefits were not as apparent for snow goose ecology, probably because of the similar spatial and temporal observational scales of the two types of knowledge for this species. Comparing sources of knowledge at similar scales allowed us to gain confidence in our conclusions and to identify areas of disagreement that should be studied further. Emphasizing complementarities across scales was more powerful for generating new insights and hypotheses. We conclude that determining the scales of the observations that form the basis for traditional ecological knowledge and scientific knowledge represents a critical step when evaluating the benefits of integrating these two types of knowledge. This is also critical when examining the congruence or contrast between the two types of knowledge for a given subject.

  4. Oral rabies vaccination in north america: opportunities, complexities, and challenges.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis Slate

    Full Text Available Steps to facilitate inter-jurisdictional collaboration nationally and continentally have been critical for implementing and conducting coordinated wildlife rabies management programs that rely heavily on oral rabies vaccination (ORV. Formation of a national rabies management team has been pivotal for coordinated ORV programs in the United States of America. The signing of the North American Rabies Management Plan extended a collaborative framework for coordination of surveillance, control, and research in border areas among Canada, Mexico, and the US. Advances in enhanced surveillance have facilitated sampling of greater scope and intensity near ORV zones for improved rabies management decision-making in real time. The value of enhanced surveillance as a complement to public health surveillance was best illustrated in Ohio during 2007, where 19 rabies cases were detected that were critical for the formulation of focused contingency actions for controlling rabies in this strategically key area. Diverse complexities and challenges are commonplace when applying ORV to control rabies in wild meso-carnivores. Nevertheless, intervention has resulted in notable successes, including the elimination of an arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus rabies virus variant in most of southern Ontario, Canada, with ancillary benefits of elimination extending into Quebec and the northeastern US. Progress continues with ORV toward preventing the spread and working toward elimination of a unique variant of gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus rabies in west central Texas. Elimination of rabies in coyotes (Canis latrans through ORV contributed to the US being declared free of canine rabies in 2007. Raccoon (Procyon lotor rabies control continues to present the greatest challenges among meso-carnivore rabies reservoirs, yet to date intervention has prevented this variant from gaining a broad geographic foothold beyond ORV zones designed to prevent its spread from the eastern US

  5. Seroprevalences of antibodies to Neospora caninum and Toxoplasma gondii in zoo animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sedlák, K; Bártová, E

    2006-03-31

    Neospora caninum is an apicomplexan parasite that causes neuromuscular disease in dogs and abortions in cattle. Little is known about the prevalence of antibodies to this parasite in zoo animals. Sera from 556 animals, from 13 Czech and Slovak zoos were tested for antibodies to N. caninum and Toxoplasma gondii by indirect fluorescent antibody test. Antibodies to N. caninum were found in 31 of 556 zoo animals (5.6%), representing 18 of 114 species tested: Eurasian wolf (Canis lupus lupus), Maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), fennec (Vulpes zerda), cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), jaguarundi (Herpailurus yaguarondi), Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), Indian lion (Panthera leo goojratensis), fisher (Martes pennanti), blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra), European bison (Bison bonasus), lechwe (Kobus leche), African buffalo (Syncerus caffer caffer), eland (Taurotragus oryx), sitatunga (Tragelaphus spekei gratus), Thorold's deer (Cervus albirostris), Eastern elk (C. elaphus canadensis), Vietnam sika deer (C. nippon pseudaxis) and Père David's deer (Elaphurus davidianus). Titres ranged from 1:40 to 1:2560. The highest prevalence 50% was found in family mustelidae of the order carnivora. Antibodies to T. gondii were detected in 193 of 556 zoo animals (34.7%) representing 72 of 114 species tested, with titres ranging from 1:40 to 1:40960. The highest prevalence 100% was found in families: hyaenidae, mustelidae, ursidae and viveridae of the order carnivora. The results of this study indicate that zoo animals have more exposure to T. gondii than to N. caninum. It is the first report of seroprevalence of antibodies to N. caninum in European zoo animals.

  6. Results of analyses of fur samples from the San Joaquin Kit Fox and associated soil and water samples from the Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 1, Tupman, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suter, G.W. II; Rosen, A.E.; Beauchamp, J.J. (Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States)); Kato, T.T. (EG and G Energy Measurements, Inc., Tupman, CA (United States))

    1992-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine whether analysis of the elemental content of fur from San Joaquin kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis mutica) and of water and soil from kit fox habitats could be used to make inferences concerning the cause of an observed decline in the kit fox population on Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 1 (NPR-1). Fur samples that had been collected previously from NPR-1, another oil field (NPR-2), and two sites with no oil development were subjected to neutron activation analysis. In addition, soil samples were collected from the home ranges of individual foxes from undisturbed portions of major soil types on NPR-1 and from wastewater samples were collected from tanks and sumps and subjected to neutron activation analysis. Most elemental concentrations in fur were highest at Camp Roberts and lowest on the undeveloped portions of NPR-I. Fur concentrations were intermediate on the developed oil fields but were correlated with percent disturbance and with number of wells on NPR-1 and NPR-2. The fact that most elements covaried across the range of sites suggests that some pervasive source such as soil was responsible. However, fur concentrations were not correlated with soft concentrations. The kit foxes on the developed portion of NPR-1 did not have concentrations of elements in fur relative to other sites that would account for the population decline in the early 1980s. The oil-related elements As, Ba, and V were elevated in fox fur from oil fields, but only As was sufficiently elevated to suggest a risk of toxicity in individual foxes. However, arsenic concentrations suggestive of sublethal toxicity were found in only 0.56% of foxes from developed oil fields, too few to account for a population decline.

  7. Immobilization of swift foxes with ketamine hydrochloride-xylazine hydrochloride

    Science.gov (United States)

    Telesco, R.L.; Sovada, Marsha A.

    2002-01-01

    There is an increasing need to develop field immobilization techniques that allow researchers to handle safely swift foxes (Vulpes velox) with minimal risk of stress or injury. We immobilized captive swift foxes to determine the safety and effectiveness of ketamine hydrochloride and xylazine hydrochloride at different dosages. We attempted to determine appropriate dosages to immobilize swift foxes for an adequate field-handling period based on three anesthesia intervals (induction period, immobilization period, and recovery period) and physiologic responses (rectal temperature, respiration rate, and heart rate). Between October 1998–July 1999, we conducted four trials, evaluating three different dosage ratios of ketamine and xylazine (2.27:1.2, 5.68:1.2, and 11.4:1.2 mg/kg ketamine:mg/kg xylazine, respectively), followed by a fourth trial with a higher dosage at the median ratio (11.4 mg/kg ketamine:2.4 mg/kg xylazine). We found little difference in induction and recovery periods among trials 1–3, but immobilization time increased with increasing dosage (Pimmobilization period and recovery period increased in trial 4 compared with trials 1–3 (P≤0.03). There was a high variation in responses of individual foxes across trials, making it difficult to identify an appropriate dosage for field handling. Heart rate and respiration rates were depressed but all physiologic measures remained within normal parameters established for domestic canids. We recommend a dosage ratio of 10 mg/kg ketamine to 1 mg/kg xylazine to immobilize swift foxes for field handling.

  8. Quantitative assessment of a data-limited recreational bonefish fishery using a time-series of fishing guides reports.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rolando O Santos

    Full Text Available Recreational fisheries can be prone to severe declines, yet these fisheries, particularly catch-and-release, are often data-limited, constraining our ability to conduct stock assessments. A combination of catch and effort indices derived from fisheries-dependent data (FDD gathered from fishing logbooks could be a powerful approach to inform these data gaps. This study demonstrates the utility of using different catch metrics such as indices of abundance, species richness associated with reported catch, and the success rate of targeted trips, to assess historical shifts in the trajectory of the data-limited bonefish (Albula vulpes fishery in Florida Bay, an economically-important recreational fishery within the Caribbean Basin. We used FDD from fishing guide reports submitted to Everglades National Park to determine temporal patterns in the bonefish population over the past 35 years. These reports indicated a decline in recreational catches in Florida Bay since the late 1980s, with an accelerated decline starting in the late 1990s-early 2000s. Analyses showed an overall 42% reduction in bonefish catches. Trends in the proportion of positive trips (i.e., the probability of catching success followed the declining catch patterns, suggesting major population changes starting in 1999-2000. As bonefish catches declined, species richness in bonefish trips increased by 34%, suggesting a decrease in bonefish abundance and/or shift in fishing effort (e.g., giving-up time, changes in preferred species. Results provide additional resolution to a pattern of decline for bonefish in South Florida and highlight the value of reconstructing time-series for the development of hypotheses about the potential driving mechanisms of species decline. Further, the data-limited nature of most recreational fisheries, and the increase in a use of catch-and-release as a fisheries management strategy point to the need to develop further data integration tools to assess

  9. Predation of artificial ground nests on white-tailed prairie dog colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, B.W.; Stanley, T.R.; Sedgwick, J.A.

    1999-01-01

    Prairie dog (Cynomys spp.) colonies are unique to prairie and shrub-steppe landscapes. However, widespread eradication, habitat loss, and sylvatic plague (Yersinia pestis) have reduced their numbers by 98% since historical times. Birds associated with prairie dogs also are declining. Potential nest predators, such as coyotes (Canis latrans), swift foxes (Vulpes velox), and badgers (Taxidea taxus), may be attracted to colonies where a high concentration of prairie dogs serve as available prey. Increased abundance of small mammals, including prairie dogs, also may increase the risk of predation for birds nesting on colonies. Finally, because grazing by prairie dogs may decrease vegetation height and canopy cover, bird nests may be easier for predators to locate. In this study, we placed 1,444 artificial ground nests on and off 74 white-tailed prairie dog (C. leucurus) colonies to test the hypothesis that nest predation rates are higher on colonies than at nearby off sites (i.e., uncolonized habitat). We sampled colonies from 27 May to 16 July 1997 at the following 3 complexes: Coyote Basin, Utah and Colorado; Moxa Arch, Wyoming; and Shirley Basin, Wyoming. Differences in daily predation rates between colonies and paired off sites averaged 1.0% (P = 0.060). When converted to a typical 14-day incubation period, predation rates averaged 14% higher on colonies (57.7 ?? 2.7%; ?? ?? SE) than at off sites (50.4 ?? 3.1%). Comparisons of habitat variables on colonies to off sites showed percent canopy cover of vegetation was similar (P = 0.114), percent bare ground was higher on colonies (P 0.288). Although we found the risk of nest predation was higher on white-tailed prairie dog colonies than at off sites, fitness of birds nesting on colonies might depend on other factors that influence foraging success, reproductive success, or nestling survival.

  10. Water developments and canids in two North American deserts: a test of the indirect effect of water hypothesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucas K Hall

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic modifications to landscapes intended to benefit wildlife may negatively influence wildlife communities. Anthropogenic provisioning of free water (water developments to enhance abundance and distribution of wildlife is a common management practice in arid regions where water is limiting. Despite the long-term and widespread use of water developments, little is known about how they influence native species. Water developments may negatively influence arid-adapted species (e.g., kit fox, Vulpes macrotis by enabling water-dependent competitors (e.g., coyote, Canis latrans to expand distribution in arid landscapes (i.e., indirect effect of water hypothesis. We tested the two predictions of the indirect effect of water hypothesis (i.e., coyotes will visit areas with free water more frequently and kit foxes will spatially and temporally avoid coyotes and evaluated relative use of free water by canids in the Great Basin and Mojave Deserts from 2010 to 2012. We established scent stations in areas with (wet and without (dry free water and monitored visitation by canids to these sites and visitation to water sources using infrared-triggered cameras. There was no difference in the proportions of visits to scent stations in wet or dry areas by coyotes or kit foxes at either study area. We did not detect spatial (no negative correlation between visits to scent stations or temporal (no difference between times when stations were visited segregation between coyotes and kit foxes. Visitation to water sources was not different for coyotes between study areas, but kit foxes visited water sources more in Mojave than Great Basin. Our results did not support the indirect effect of water hypothesis in the Great Basin or Mojave Deserts for these two canids.

  11. Intrapopulation variability shaping isotope discrimination and turnover: experimental evidence in arctic foxes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Lecomte

    Full Text Available Tissue-specific stable isotope signatures can provide insights into the trophic ecology of consumers and their roles in food webs. Two parameters are central for making valid inferences based on stable isotopes, isotopic discrimination (difference in isotopic ratio between consumer and its diet and turnover time (renewal process of molecules in a given tissue usually measured when half of the tissue composition has changed. We investigated simultaneously the effects of age, sex, and diet types on the variation of discrimination and half-life in nitrogen and carbon stable isotopes (δ¹⁵N and δ¹³C, respectively in five tissues (blood cells, plasma, muscle, liver, nail, and hair of a top predator, the arctic fox Vulpes lagopus.We fed 40 farmed foxes (equal numbers of adults and yearlings of both sexes with diet capturing the range of resources used by their wild counterparts. We found that, for a single species, six tissues, and three diet types, the range of discrimination values can be almost as large as what is known at the scale of the whole mammalian or avian class. Discrimination varied depending on sex, age, tissue, and diet types, ranging from 0.3‰ to 5.3‰ (mean  = 2.6‰ for δ¹⁵N and from 0.2‰ to 2.9‰ (mean  = 0.9‰ for δ¹³C. We also found an impact of population structure on δ¹⁵N half-life in blood cells. Varying across individuals, δ¹⁵N half-life in plasma (6 to 10 days was also shorter than for δ¹³C (14 to 22 days, though δ¹⁵N and δ¹³C half-lives are usually considered as equal.Overall, our multi-factorial experiment revealed that at least six levels of isotopic variations could co-occur in the same population. Our experimental analysis provides a framework for quantifying multiple sources of variation in isotopic discrimination and half-life that needs to be taken into account when designing and analysing ecological field studies.

  12. A new PCR assay for the detection and differentiation of Babesia canis and Babesia vogeli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Annoscia, Giada; Latrofa, Maria Stefania; Cantacessi, Cinzia; Olivieri, Emanuela; Manfredi, Maria Teresa; Dantas-Torres, Filipe; Otranto, Domenico

    2017-10-01

    Babesia spp. are globally distributed tick-borne protozoan parasites that infect the red blood cells of a wide range of vertebrate hosts, including humans. Diagnosis of babesiosis is often impeded by the transient presence of the parasites in peripheral blood, as well as by their pleomorphic nature. Given the reports of an expanding and, in some cases, sympatric geographical distribution of Babesia canis and Babesia vogeli in dogs and associated vectors, in Europe, the development of time-efficient and cost-effective diagnostic tools to detect and differentiate these two species is warranted. In this study, we designed and developed a novel polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay targeting the parasite cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) gene, for the simultaneous detection and differentiation of B. canis and B. vogeli. The analytical sensitivity of the PCR was evaluated using serial dilutions of genomic DNA extracted from individual and artificially mixed canine blood samples infected by B. canis (3×10 2 infected erythrocytes/ml, ie/ml) and B. vogeli (2.1×10 1 ie/ml). The analytical specificity of the assay was assessed using blood samples positive for Hepatozoon canis, Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma platys, Babesia microti, Babesia rossi and Theileria annae (syn. Babesia vulpes). The clinical specificity of the PCR assay was evaluated on 147 blood samples from dogs and 128 tick specimens (Dermacentor reticulatus and Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato). Species-specific bands of the expected sizes (i.e., 750bp for B. canis and 450bp for B. vogeli), and two bands in the mixed blood samples were obtained. The PCR assay developed herein detected a low number of infected erythrocytes (i.e., 3×10 -2 B. canis, 2.1×10 -2 B. vogeli ie/ml). Of the 147 blood samples, nine (6.1%) were positive for B. canis and six (4.1%) for B. vogeli, whereas only one tick (D. reticulatus) was positive for B. canis. This PCR assay represents a rapid and reliable tool for the diagnosis of B

  13. Southern Great Plains Rapid Ecoregional assessment—Volume I. Ecological communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, Gordon C.; Burris, Lucy; Carr, Natasha B.; Leinwand, Ian I.F.; Melcher, Cynthia P.

    2017-10-19

    nivosus), mountain plover (Charadrius montanus), long-billed curlew (Numenius americanus), interior least tern (Sternula antillarum athalassos), burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea), black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus), bat assemblage, swift fox (Vulpes velox), and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus).The Southern Great Plains REA is summarized in a series of three reports and associated datasets. The pre-assessment report (available online at https://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2015/1003/) summarizes the process used by the REA stakeholders to select management questions, conservation elements, and change agents. It also provides background information for each conservation element. Volume I of the Southern Great Plains REA report (this volume) addresses the ecological communities. Volume II will address the species and species assemblages. All source and derived datasets used to produce the maps and graphs for REAs are available online at the BLM Landscape Approach Data Portal (https://landscape.blm.gov/geoportal/catalog/REAs/REAs.page).

  14. Sarcocystis caninum and Sarcocystis svanai n. spp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) Associated with Severe Myositis and Hepatitis in the Domestic Dog (Canis familiaris)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubey, J. P.; Sykes, J. E.; Shelton, G. D.; Sharp, N.; Verma, S. K.; Calero-Bernal, R.; Viviano, J.; Sundar, N.; Khan, A.; Grigg, M. E.

    2014-01-01

    , a parasite known to infect Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus). PMID:25256157

  15. Ecology of Exercise in Wild Fish: Integrating Concepts of Individual Physiological Capacity, Behavior, and Fitness Through Diverse Case Studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownscombe, Jacob W; Cooke, Steven J; Algera, Dirk A; Hanson, Kyle C; Eliason, Erika J; Burnett, Nicholas J; Danylchuk, Andy J; Hinch, Scott G; Farrell, Anthony P

    2017-08-01

    Wild animals maximize fitness through certain behaviors (e.g., foraging, mating, predator avoidance) that incur metabolic costs and often require high levels of locomotor activity. Consequently, the ability of animals to achieve high fitness often relies on their physiological capacity for exercise (aerobic scope) and/or their ability to acquire and utilize energy judiciously. Here, we explore how environmental factors and physiological limitations influence exercise and metabolism in fish while foraging, migrating to spawning grounds, and providing parental care. We do so with three case studies that use a number of approaches to studying exercise in wild fish using biologging and biotelemetry platforms. Bonefish (Albula vulpes) selectively use shallow water tropical marine environments to forage when temperatures are near optimal for aerobic scope and exercise capacity. Bonefish energy expenditure at upper thermal extremes is maximal while activity levels diminish, likely caused by reduced aerobic scope. Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) reproductive migrations frequently involve passage through hydraulically challenging areas, and their ability to successfully pass these regions is constrained by their physiological capacity for exercise. Aerobic scope and swim performance are correlated with migration difficulty among sockeye salmon (O. nerka) populations; however, depletion of endogenous energy stores can also limit migration success. In another example, male smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu) allocate a significant amount of energy to nest-guarding behaviors to protect their developing brood. Smallmouth bass body size, endogenous energy reserves, and physiological state influence nest-guarding behaviors and reproductive success. We suggest that in some scenarios (e.g., bonefish foraging, Pacific salmon dam passage) metabolic capacity for exercise may be the strongest determinant of biological fitness, while in others (e.g., long distance salmon migration

  16. Molecular detection of vector-borne pathogens in blood and splenic samples from dogs with splenic disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Movilla, Rebeca; Altet, Laura; Serrano, Lorena; Tabar, María-Dolores; Roura, Xavier

    2017-03-13

    The spleen is a highly perfused organ involved in the immunological control and elimination of vector-borne pathogens (VBP), which could have a fundamental role in the pathogenesis of splenic disease. This study aimed to evaluate certain VBP in samples from dogs with splenic lesions. Seventy-seven EDTA-blood and 64 splenic tissue samples were collected from 78 dogs with splenic disease in a Mediterranean area. Babesia spp., Bartonella spp., Ehrlichia/Anaplasma spp., Hepatozoon canis, Leishmania infantum, hemotropic Mycoplasma spp. and Rickettsia spp. were targeted using PCR assays. Sixty EDTA-blood samples from dogs without evidence of splenic lesions were included as a control group. More than half (51.56%) of the biopsies (33/64) were consistent with benign lesions and 48.43% (31/64) with malignancy, mostly hemangiosarcoma (25/31). PCR yielded positive results in 13 dogs with spleen alterations (16.67%), for Babesia canis (n = 3), Babesia gibsoni (n = 2), hemotropic Mycoplasma spp. (n = 2), Rickettsia massiliae (n = 1) and "Babesia vulpes" (n = 1), in blood; and for B. canis, B. gibsoni, Ehrlichia canis and L. infantum (n = 1 each), in spleen. Two control dogs (3.3%) were positive for B. gibsoni and H. canis (n = 1 each). Benign lesions were detected in the 61.54% of infected dogs (8/13); the remaining 38.46% were diagnosed with malignancies (5/13). Infection was significantly associated to the presence of splenic disease (P = 0.013). There was no difference in the prevalence of infection between dogs with benign and malignant splenic lesions (P = 0.69); however B. canis was more prevalent in dogs with hemangiosarcoma (P = 0.006). VBP infection could be involved in the pathogenesis of splenic disease. The immunological role of the spleen could predispose to alterations of this organ in infected dogs. Interestingly, all dogs with B. canis infection were diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma in the present survey. As previously

  17. Protective immune response of oral rabies vaccine in stray dogs, corsacs and steppe wolves after a single immunization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhugunissov, K; Bulatov, Ye; Taranov, D; Yershebulov, Z; Koshemetov, Zh; Abduraimov, Ye; Kondibayeva, Zh; Samoltyrova, A; Amanova, Zh; Khairullin, B; Sansyzbay, A

    2017-11-01

    In this study the safety and protective immunity of an oral rabies vaccine, based on the live, modified rabies virus strain VRC-RZ2, was examined in stray dogs (Canis Sp.), corsacs (Vulpes corsac) and steppe wolves (Canis lupus campestris). In the safety group (dogs, n=6; corsacs, n=3; wolves, n=3) which was vaccinated with a 10-times field dose/animal, no animals showed any signs of disease or changes in behavior or appetite during the period of clinical observation, similar to the animals in the negative control group. Saliva samples taken from animals prior and post (5 th and 10 th days) vaccination failed to demonstrate rabies virus antigen. Observations of immunogenicity in vaccinated carnivores (dogs, corsacs and wolves) during a 180 day period showed the titers of virus neutralizing antibodies (VNA) in the blood sera of vaccinated dogs to be within 0.59-1.37 IU/mL. On 14 days post vaccination (dpv), all the wild carnivores had detectable levels of neutralizing antibodies, with mean titers ranging from 0.50 ± 0.07 IU/mL (for wolves) to 0.59 ± 0.10 IU/mL (for corsacs). Weeks after vaccination, all the vaccinated wolves and corsacs had higher levels of neutralizing antibodies: 0.70 ± 0.10 - 0.71 ± 0.08 IU/mL at 30 dpv, 1.06 ± 0.08 - 1.28 ± 0.21 IU/mL at 60 dpv and 0.41 ± 0.09 - 047 ± 0.06 at 180 dpv. The highest level of VNA (˃1.0 IU/ml) was detected at 60 dpv, in all vaccinated animals. After challenge all vaccinated dogs remained healthy for 180 days. Control animals (unvaccinated dogs) developed symptoms of rabies on day 6 post administration of a virulent virus and died of rabies on days 11-13. Of note, the VNA titers in all the wild carnivores (corsacs and wolves) immunized with VRC-RZ2 were higher than 0.5 IU/ml (0.59 ± 0.11 IU/ml), even as early as 14 days post vaccination. These, presumably protective, titers of antibodies to rabies virus were present in the dogs and wild carnivores examined in this study for at

  18. Evaluation of Scat Deposition Transects versus Radio Telemetry for Developing a Species Distribution Model for a Rare Desert Carnivore, the Kit Fox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempsey, Steven J; Gese, Eric M; Kluever, Bryan M; Lonsinger, Robert C; Waits, Lisette P

    2015-01-01

    Development and evaluation of noninvasive methods for monitoring species distribution and abundance is a growing area of ecological research. While noninvasive methods have the advantage of reduced risk of negative factors associated with capture, comparisons to methods using more traditional invasive sampling is lacking. Historically kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis) occupied the desert and semi-arid regions of southwestern North America. Once the most abundant carnivore in the Great Basin Desert of Utah, the species is now considered rare. In recent decades, attempts have been made to model the environmental variables influencing kit fox distribution. Using noninvasive scat deposition surveys for determination of kit fox presence, we modeled resource selection functions to predict kit fox distribution using three popular techniques (Maxent, fixed-effects, and mixed-effects generalized linear models) and compared these with similar models developed from invasive sampling (telemetry locations from radio-collared foxes). Resource selection functions were developed using a combination of landscape variables including elevation, slope, aspect, vegetation height, and soil type. All models were tested against subsequent scat collections as a method of model validation. We demonstrate the importance of comparing multiple model types for development of resource selection functions used to predict a species distribution, and evaluating the importance of environmental variables on species distribution. All models we examined showed a large effect of elevation on kit fox presence, followed by slope and vegetation height. However, the invasive sampling method (i.e., radio-telemetry) appeared to be better at determining resource selection, and therefore may be more robust in predicting kit fox distribution. In contrast, the distribution maps created from the noninvasive sampling (i.e., scat transects) were significantly different than the invasive method, thus scat transects may be

  19. ヒメネズミの営巣場所利用:タイリクモモンガの存在下における営巣高変化の可能性

    OpenAIRE

    鈴木, 圭; 山根, 大; 柳川, 久

    2014-01-01

    同所的に生息し,類似した生態的特徴を持つ種同士は,他種との資源競争を避けるために,その資源に対する選択性を変化させることがある.本研究では,資源競争回避のメカニズムを解明するための基礎的情報を収集するために,樹洞を繁殖場所とするヒメネズミApodemus argenteusを対象として,タイリクモモンガPteromys volansとの営巣資源をめぐる競争回避のための選択性の変化を調べた.本研究では,タイリクモモンガの影響を受けない条件下と受ける条件下においてヒメネズミの営巣高を比較した.ヒメネズミは,タイリクモモンガの入れない入口径が小さい巣箱では低い位置から高い位置まで様々な高さに営巣した.それに対し,タイリクモモンガが入ることができる入口径が大きい巣箱では,一貫して低い位置に設置された巣箱に営巣した.一般的に低い樹洞は,クロテンMartes zibellinaやアカギツネVulpes vulpesなど地上からくる捕食者に捕食される危険性が高い.加えて,入口径が大きい樹洞はより多くの種類の捕食者の侵入が可能であるため,捕食圧が高くなると考えられ,入口径が大きい巣箱で,ヒメネズ...

  20. Prevalence of ticks and tick-borne pathogens: Babesia and Borrelia species in ticks infesting cats of Great Britain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Saran; Abdullah, Swaid; Helps, Chris; Tasker, Séverine; Newbury, Hannah; Wall, Richard

    2017-09-15

    In a study of tick and tick-borne pathogen prevalence, between May and October 2016, 278 veterinary practices in Great Britain examined 1855 cats. Six-hundred and one cats were found to have attached ticks. The most frequently recorded tick species was Ixodes ricinus (57.1%), followed by Ixodes hexagonus (41.4%) and Ixodes trianguliceps (1.5%). Male cats, 4-6 years of age living in rural areas were most likely to be carrying a tick; hair length and tick treatment history had no significant association with attachment. For cats that were parasitized by ticks in large urban areas, I. hexagonus was the most frequent species recorded. Molecular analysis was possible for 541 individual tick samples, others were too damaged for analysis; Babesia spp., and Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato were identified in 1.1% (n=6) and 1.8% (n=10) of these, respectively. Babesia spp. included Babesia vulpes sp. nov./Babesia microti-like (n=4) in I. hexagonus and Babesia venatorum (n=2) in I. ricinus. Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. species included Borrelia garinii (n=6) and Borrelia afzelii (n=4). The majority of B. burgorferi s.l. cases were found in I. ricinus, with B. afzelii in one I. hexagonus nymph. No Borrelia or Babesia spp. were present in I. trianguliceps. To determine a true prevalence for ticks on cats, practices that only submitted questionnaires from cats with ticks and practices that submitted fewer than 5 returns per week were removed; amongst those considered to have adhered strictly to the collection protocol, feline tick prevalence amongst cats that had access to the outdoors was 6.6%. These results show that ticks can be found on cats throughout Great Britain, which harbour a range of species of Babesia and B. burgdorferi s.l. and that cats, particularly in green spaces within urban areas, may form an important host for I. hexagonus, a known vector of pathogens. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Questionnaire survey of detrimental fur animal epidemic necrotic pyoderma in Finland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nordgren, Heli; Vapalahti, Katariina; Vapalahti, Olli; Sukura, Antti; Virtala, Anna-Maija

    2017-08-03

    In 2007, a previously unrecorded disease, fur animal epidemic necrotic pyoderma (FENP), was detected in farmed mink (Neovision vision), foxes (Vulpes lagopus) and Finnraccoons (Nyctereutes procyonoides) in Finland. Symptoms included severe pyoderma with increased mortality, causing both animal welfare problems and economic losses. In 2011, an epidemiologic questionnaire was mailed to all members of the Finnish Fur Breeders' Association to assess the occurrence of FENP from 2009 through the first 6 months of 2011. The aim was to describe the geographical distribution and detailed clinical signs of FENP, as well as sources of infection and potential risk factors for the disease. A total of 239 farmers (25%) returned the questionnaire. Clinical signs of FENP were observed in 40% (95% CI 34-46%) of the study farms. In addition, the survey clarified the specific clinical signs for different animal species. The presence of disease was associated with the importation of mink, especially from Denmark (OR 9.3, 95% CI 2.6-33.0). The transmission route between Finnish farms was associated with fur animal purchases. Some risk factors such as the farm type were also indicated. As such, FENP was detected more commonly on farms with more than one species of fur animal in comparison to farms with, for example, only foxes (OR 4.6, 95% CI 2.4-8.6), and the incidence was higher on farms with over 750 breeder mink compared to smaller farms (OR 3.8, 95% CI 1.6-9.0). Contact between fur animals and birds and other wildlife increased the risk of FENP on farms. Responses also indicated that blocking the entry of wildlife to the animal premises protected against FENP. FENP was most likely introduced to Finland by imported mink and spread further within the country via domestically purchased fur animals. Some potential risk factors, such as the type and size of the farm and contact with wildlife, contributed to the spread of FENP. Escape-proof shelter buildings block the entry of wildlife

  2. Emerging factors associated with the decline of a gray fox population and multi-scale land cover associations of mesopredators in the Chicago metropolitan area.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Willingham, Alison N.; /Ohio State U.

    2008-01-01

    Statewide surveys of furbearers in Illinois indicate gray (Urocyon cinereoargenteus) and red (Vulpes vulpes) foxes have experienced substantial declines in relative abundance, whereas other species such as raccoons (Procyon lotor) and coyotes (Canis latrans) have exhibited dramatic increases during the same time period. The cause of the declines of gray and red foxes has not been identified, and the current status of gray foxes remains uncertain. Therefore, I conducted a large-scale predator survey and tracked radiocollared gray foxes from 2004 to 2007 in order to determine the distribution, survival, cause-specific mortality sources and land cover associations of gray foxes in an urbanized region of northeastern Illinois, and examined the relationships between the occurrence of gray fox and the presence other species of mesopredators, specifically coyotes and raccoons. Although generalist mesopredators are common and can reach high densities in many urban areas their urban ecology is poorly understood due to their secretive nature and wariness of humans. Understanding how mesopredators utilize urbanized landscapes can be useful in the management and control of disease outbreaks, mitigation of nuisance wildlife issues, and gaining insight into how mesopredators shape wildlife communities in highly fragmented areas. I examined habitat associations of raccoons, opossums (Didelphis virginiana), domestic cats (Felis catus), coyotes, foxes (gray and red), and striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis) at multiple spatial scales in an urban environment. Gray fox occurrence was rare and widely dispersed, and survival estimates were similar to other studies. Gray fox occurrence was negatively associated with natural and semi-natural land cover types. Fox home range size increased with increasing urban development suggesting that foxes may be negatively influenced by urbanization. Gray fox occurrence was not associated with coyote or raccoon presence. However, spatial avoidance and

  3. Evaluación del Cisticerco Longicollis de Taenia Crassiceps como Fuente de Antígeno para el Diagnóstico de la Neurocisticercosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Humberto Botero Garcés

    2004-03-01

    >

    La sensibilidad del inmunoblot se ha visto afectada por el diseño metodológico, la evolución de la enfermedad y principalmente el tipo de antígeno utilizado Para evitar estos inconvenientes, algunos grupos de investigadores han realizado un gran esfuerzo por buscar cisticercos de otras Taenias que compartan moléculas con T. solium y puedan ser utilizados como antígenos heterólogos para las pruebas inmunológicas, por lo que se ha planteado la posibilidad de emplear el cisticerco longicollis de Taenia crassiceps. Taenia crassiceps es un metacéstodo que infecta de forma natural a los zorros rojos (Vulpes vulpes, lobos (Canis lupuis y otros pequeños roedores hasta ahora reportados en Europa y Ontario (20, presenta una alta tasa de reproducción, la cual se debe a la propiedad de reproducirse asexualmente por gemación en la zona opuesta al éscolex tanto en la parte externa como en la parte interna del cisticerco, una característica que muy pocos parásitos pueden desarrollar (4.

    Cuando se realizan infecciones orales experimentales de hospederos intermediarios incluyendo al ratón, los huevos ingeridos se desarrollan como metacéstodos en la fascia, el tejido muscular, el tejido peritoneal, el riñón, el pericardio, etc, mientras que cuando se realizan infecciones por inoculación intraperitoneal, los cisticercos se quedan confinados en la cavidad abdominal (4.

    Algunos estudios comparativos entre cisiticerco longicollis y cisticerco cellulosae han demostrado que los antígenos de T. crassiceps pueden ser tan sensibles y específicos como los de T. solium (1,9-12. García y colaboradores sugieren que el antígeno obtenido de T. solium puede ser sustituido por el antígeno obtenido de T. crassiceps pues además de reaccionar cruzadamente con los péptidos de c. cellulosae en las pruebas inmunológicas y de obtenerse una muy buena reproducibilidad, ofrece varias ventajas por cuanto puede ser fácilmente mantenido en animales de laboratorio, lo que representa la

  4. Health effects from long-range transported contaminants in Arctic top predators: An integrated review based on studies of polar bears and relevant model species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonne, Christian

    2010-07-01

    The aim of this review is to provide a thorough overview of the health effects from the complexed biomagnified mixture of long-range transported industrial organochlorines (OCs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) and mercury (Hg) on polar bear (Ursus maritimus) health. Multiple scientific studies of polar bears indicate negative relationships between exposure to these contaminants and health parameters; however, these are all of a correlative nature and do not represent true cause-and-effects. Therefore, information from controlled studies of farmed Norwegian Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) and housed East and West Greenland sledge dogs (Canis familiaris) were included as supportive weight of evidence in the clarification of contaminant exposure and health effects in polar bears. The review showed that hormone and vitamin concentrations, liver, kidney and thyroid gland morphology as well as reproductive and immune systems of polar bears are likely to be influenced by contaminant exposure. Furthermore, exclusively based on polar bear contaminant studies, bone density reduction and neurochemical disruption and DNA hypomethylation of the brain stem seemed to occur. The range of tissue concentration, at which these alterations were observed in polar bears, were ca. 1-70,000 ng/g lw for OCs (blood plasma concentrations of some PCB metabolites even higher), ca. 1-1000 ng/g lw for PBDEs and for PFCs and Hg 114-3052 ng/g ww and 0.1-50 microg/g ww, respectively. Similar concentrations were found in farmed foxes and housed sledge dogs while the lack of dose response designs did not allow an estimation of threshold levels for oral exposure and accumulated tissue concentrations. Nor was it possible to pinpoint a specific group of contaminants being more important than others nor analyze their interactions. For East Greenland polar bears the corresponding daily SigmaOC and SigmaPBDE oral exposure was estimated to be 35 and 0.34 microg/kg body

  5. Exposure and effects assessment of persistent organohalogen contaminants in arctic wildlife and fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letcher, Robert J; Bustnes, Jan Ove; Dietz, Rune; Jenssen, Bjørn M; Jørgensen, Even H; Sonne, Christian; Verreault, Jonathan; Vijayan, Mathilakath M; Gabrielsen, Geir W

    2010-07-01

    Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) encompass an array of anthropogenic organic and elemental substances and their degradation and metabolic byproducts that have been found in the tissues of exposed animals, especially POPs categorized as organohalogen contaminants (OHCs). OHCs have been of concern in the circumpolar arctic for decades. For example, as a consequence of bioaccumulation and in some cases biomagnification of legacy (e.g., chlorinated PCBs, DDTs and CHLs) and emerging (e.g., brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and in particular polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) including perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanic acid (PFOA) found in Arctic biota and humans. Of high concern are the potential biological effects of these contaminants in exposed Arctic wildlife and fish. As concluded in the last review in 2004 for the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program (AMAP) on the effects of POPs in Arctic wildlife, prior to 1997, biological effects data were minimal and insufficient at any level of biological organization. The present review summarizes recent studies on biological effects in relation to OHC exposure, and attempts to assess known tissue/body compartment concentration data in the context of possible threshold levels of effects to evaluate the risks. This review concentrates mainly on post-2002, new OHC effects data in Arctic wildlife and fish, and is largely based on recently available effects data for populations of several top trophic level species, including seabirds (e.g., glaucous gull (Larus hyperboreus)), polar bears (Ursus maritimus), polar (Arctic) fox (Vulpes lagopus), and Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus), as well as semi-captive studies on sled dogs (Canis familiaris). Regardless, there remains a dearth of data on true contaminant exposure, cause-effect relationships with respect to these contaminant exposures in Arctic wildlife and fish. Indications of exposure effects are largely

  6. Gopherus Agassizii (Desert Tortoise). Predation/Mountain Lions (Pre-Print)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paul D. Greger and Philip A. Medica

    2009-01-01

    sized Mountain Lion. By comparison, a 2 year old male Mountain Lion salvaged on NTS had an upper intercanine bite width of 45 mm, and a 6 month old kitten measured 35mm respectively. The Mountain Lion (Puma concolor) is the only predator that exists in southern Nevada that could possibly have a bite with a gap between its upper canine teeth that large (Murmann et al. 2006. J. Forensic Sci. 51:846-860). The appearance of the shell remains in Figure 1A is similar to that depicting Jaguar (Panthera onca) predation, on the Amazonian Tortoise (Geochelone denticulata) as illustrated by Emmons (1989. J. Herpetol. 23:311-314) with the majority of the carapace broken open and the plastron still intact. Predation of Desert Tortoises by Mountain Lions was also documented in 1993 in southern Arizona (Little Shipp Wash Plot), where 7 of 8 carcasses found were attributed to Mountain Lion predation (Averill-Murray et al. 2002. In. T.R.Van Devender [ed.], The Sonoran Desert Tortoise: Natural History, Biology, and Conservation, pp.109-134. University of Arizona Press and Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson, Arizona). Similarly, predation by a Mountain Lion has been reported on the Argentine Tortoise (Chelonoidis chilensis) in Argentina (Acosta et al. 2004. Herpetol. Review 35:53-54), and a Mountain Lion kitten was observed to kill and consume a portion of the carapace of a Texas Tortoise (Gopherus berlandieri) in west Texas (Adams et al. 2006. Southwestern Nat. 51:581-581). Over the past 45 years this Desert Tortoise population has been monitored yearly, with no prior evidence of predation to tortoises within the fenced enclosures. On several occasions other predators such as Bobcats (Lynx rufus) have been observed within the study enclosures for as long as a week. Evidence of Kit Fox (Vulpes macrotus) sign has been observed on numerous occasions, and a Spotted Skunk (Spilogale putorius) and Longtail Weasels (Mustela frenata) have been captured and released (B.G. Maza, pers. comm