International Zoo Veterinary Group

Keighley, United Kingdom

International Zoo Veterinary Group

Keighley, United Kingdom
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Tollington S.,University of Kent | Tollington S.,University of Sheffield | Jones C.G.,Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust | Greenwood A.,International Zoo Veterinary Group | And 6 more authors.
Biological Conservation | Year: 2013

Threatened populations of birds are often restored after bottleneck events by using reintroduction techniques. Whilst population numbers are often increased by using such measures, the long-term genetic effects of reintroductions and post-release management of the resulting populations are frequently overlooked. We identify an overall declining trend in population-wide estimates of genetic diversity over two decades since the initial recovery of the population from the most severe part of this species' bottleneck. Additionally, by incorporating the genotypes of known founding individuals into population viability simulations, we evaluate the genetic effects of population management under various scenarios at both the metapopulation and subpopulation levels. We reveal that whilst population augmentation has led to increased genetic homogenisation among subpopulations, significant differentiation still exists. Simulations predict that even with a low level of natural dispersal leading to gene-flow this differentiation could be ameliorated. We conclude by offering a number of key recommendations relating to post-recovery management of reintroduced bird populations which support the encouragement of individual dispersal using established management techniques such as artificial nest-site provisioning. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Caliendo V.,Al Wasl Veterinary Clinic | Bull A.C.J.,Philips | Stidworthy M.F.,International Zoo Veterinary Group
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2012

A captive 3-mo-old white African lion (Panthera leo) presented with clinical signs of acute pain and a distended abdomen. Despite emergency treatment, the lion died a few hours after presentation. Postmortem examination revealed gross changes in the liver, spleen, and lungs and an anomalous cystic structure in the bile duct. Histologic examination identified severe generalized multifocal to coalescent necrotizing and neutrophilic hepatitis, neutrophilic splenitis, and mild interstitial pneumonia, consistent with bacterial septicemia. The abnormal biliary structures resembled biliary cystadenoma. However, due to the age of the animal, they were presumed to be congenital in origin. Biliary tract anomalies and cystadenomas have been reported previously in adult lions, and this case suggests that at least some of these examples may have a congenital basis. It is unclear whether the lesion was an underlying factor in the development of hepatitis. © 2012 American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.

Raisin C.,University of Kent | Raisin C.,University of Sheffield | Raisin C.,Mauritian Wildlife Foundation | Frantz A.C.,University of Sheffield | And 5 more authors.
Conservation Genetics | Year: 2012

For conservation managers tasked with recovering threatened species, genetic structure can exacerbate the rate of loss of genetic diversity because alleles unique to a sub-population are more likely to be lost by the effects of random genetic drift than if a population is panmictic. Given that intensive management techniques commonly used to recover threatened species frequently involve movement of individuals within and between populations, managers need to be aware not only of pre-existing levels of genetic structure but also of the potential effects that intensive management might have on these patterns. The Mauritius parakeet (Psittacula echo) has been the subject of an intensive conservation programme, involving translocation and reintroduction that has recovered the population from less than 20 individuals in 1987 to approximately 500 in 2010. Analysis of genotype data derived from 18 microsatellite markers developed for this species reveals a clear signal of structure in the population before intensive management began, but which subsequently disappears following management intervention. This study illustrates the impacts that conservation management can have on the genetic structure of an island endemic population and demonstrates how translocations or reintroductions can benefit populations of endangered species by reducing the risk of loss of genetic diversity. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Sanders J.L.,Oregon State University | Watral V.,Oregon State University | Stidworthy M.F.,International Zoo Veterinary Group | Kent M.L.,Oregon State University
Zebrafish | Year: 2016

The microsporidium, Pseudoloma neurophilia, is the most common infectious organism found in laboratory zebrafish colonies. Many currently used zebrafish lines originally came from pet store fish, and the initial description of P. Neurophilia came from zebrafish obtained from a retail pet store. However, as P. Neurophilia has not been described from wild-caught zebrafish, whether P. Neurophilia is a natural pathogen of zebrafish is an open question. The pooling of fish of different species in the aquarium fish trade is common and a generalist parasite could be transmitted to novel hosts in this scenario. We determined that P. Neurophilia can infect seven species of fishes from five families by cohabitation with infected zebrafish: Betta splendens, Xiphophorus maculatus, Devario aequipinnatus, Pimephales promelas, Oryzias latipes, Carassius auratus and Paracheirodon innesi. Infections in these fishes were histologically similar to those of zebrafish. We include a case report of a laboratory population of fathead minnows with naturally acquired P. Neurophilia infections. With such a broad host range, including several fish families, other laboratory fishes should be screened routinely for this and other microsporidian parasites. © 2016 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

Shuttleworth C.M.,Bangor University | Everest D.J.,Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency Weybridge | McInnes C.J.,Moredun Research Institute | Greenwood A.,International Zoo Veterinary Group | And 3 more authors.
Hystrix | Year: 2014

Squirrelpox virus (SQPV) and adenovirus produce pathological disease in native red squirrels (Sciurus vulgaris). SQPV in particular is a significant factor in regional population declines and is generally prevalent in the UK's introduced grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) population as an asymptomatic infection. Despite the role of the grey squirrel as a virus reservoir and potential inter-specific infection pathways being highlighted, there remains a paucity of field study data with known relative inter-specific infection rates and quantified frequency of interactions. Intriguingly, whilst captive zoological red squirrel collections are often present within woodland habitat containing wild grey squirrels, clinical pox cases are rarely observed unless red squirrels are released from the enclosures. In 2011 we monitored grey squirrel activity on an enclosure containing red squirrels. Grey squirrels were present for a cumulative total of 47.5 minutes within the twenty four hours of observation. A range of behaviours were recorded including feeding, and instances where discarded food fell into the red squirrel enclosures below. We interpret the value of these observations in the context of published theories of viral transmission. The local grey squirrels were subsequently culled and tested for evidence of both historical and current SQPV and adenovirus infections. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) assays did not amplify adenovirus DNA from grey squirrel blood samples, but positive results were recorded in faeces (3/18, 17%) and (10/18, 56%) in parallel spleen samples from the same animals. This variation in tissue specific detection rates suggests that previous long-term surveillance of adenovirus in wild grey squirrels focussing on blood samples may have significantly underestimated true infection rates. Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) tests revealed exposure to SQPV by antibody presence in 33% of the animals. Additionally, 22% of the animals contained detectable levels of both viruses. In parallel with laboratory and field studies in 2011, we collated historical unpublished reports and archived data from a range of UK squirrel collections and highlight some key cases of infection. We recommend that further behavioural and viral screening studies are focussed within scenarios where captive red squirrels are sympatric with wild grey squirrels.

Lloyd C.,Nad Al Shiba Veterinary Hospital | Stidworthy M.F.,International Zoo Veterinary Group
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2011

Multiple cases of lameness in gerenuk (Litocranius walleri) and bongo antelope (Tragelaphus eurycerus isaaci) associated with high levels of fluoride in a commercial feed are reported. Clinical pathology and histopathology findings are described and the response to treatment is documented. The case highlights the importance of quality control in feed management. © 2011 American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.

Lloyd C.,Nad Al Shiba Veterinary Hospital | Stidworthy M.F.,International Zoo Veterinary Group | Wernery U.,Central Veterinary Research Laboratory
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2010

Five cases of late-stage abortion in dama gazelle (Gazella dama) occurred in the United Arab Emirates. Histopathologic and molecular diagnostics found the abortions to be associated with Coxiella burnetii infection. Examination of the herd 6 mo later revealed a significant number of serologically positive animals but failed to detect the antigen in genital swabs. There are few reports in the literature of C. burnetii abortion in nondomestic ungulates and no published reports from the United Arab Emirates. Copyright 2010 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.

PubMed | Mauritian Wildlife Foundation, International Zoo Veterinary Group, Institute for Conservation Research and University of Canterbury
Type: Journal Article | Journal: The Journal of animal ecology | Year: 2015

Infectious diseases are widely recognized to have substantial impact on wildlife populations. These impacts are sometimes exacerbated in small endangered populations, and therefore, the success of conservation reintroductions to aid the recovery of such species can be seriously threatened by outbreaks of infectious disease. Intensive management strategies associated with conservation reintroductions can further compound these negative effects in such populations. Exploring the sublethal effects of disease outbreaks among natural populations is challenging and requires longitudinal, individual life-history data on patterns of reproductive success and other indicators of individual fitness. Long-term monitoring data concerning detailed reproductive information of the reintroduced Mauritius parakeet (Psittacula echo) population collected before, during and after a disease outbreak was investigated. Deleterious effects of an outbreak of beak and feather disease virus (BFDV) were revealed on hatch success, but these effects were remarkably short-lived and disproportionately associated with breeding pairs which took supplemental food. Individual BFDV infection status was not predicted by any genetic, environmental or conservation management factors and was not associated with any of our measures of immune function, perhaps suggesting immunological impairment. Experimental immunostimulation using the PHA (phytohaemagglutinin assay) challenge technique did, however, provoke a significant cellular immune response. We illustrate the resilience of this bottlenecked and once critically endangered, island-endemic species to an epidemic outbreak of BFDV and highlight the value of systematic monitoring in revealing inconspicuous but nonetheless substantial ecological interactions. Our study demonstrates that the emergence of such an infectious disease in a population ordinarily associated with increased susceptibility does not necessarily lead to deleterious impacts on population growth and that negative effects on reproductive fitness can be short-lived.

PubMed | International Zoo Veterinary Group
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Veterinary pathology | Year: 2014

Scuticociliatosis is an economically important, frequently fatal disease of marine fish in aquaculture, caused by histophagous ciliated protozoa in the subclass Scuticociliatida of the phylum Ciliophora. A rapidly lethal systemic scuticociliate infection is described that affected aquarium-captive zebra sharks (Stegostoma fasciatum), Port Jackson sharks (Heterodontus portusjacksoni), and a Japanese horn shark (Heterodontus japonicus). Animals died unexpectedly or after a brief period of lethargy or behavioral abnormality. Gross findings included necrohemorrhagic hepatitis and increased volumes of celomic fluid. Histologically, 1 or more of a triad of necrotizing hepatitis, necrotizing meningoencephalitis, and thrombosing branchitis were seen in all cases, with necrotizing vasculitis or intravascular fibrinocellular thrombi. Lesions contained variably abundant invading ciliated protozoa. Molecular identification by polymerase chain reaction from formalin-fixed tissues identified these as the scuticociliate Philasterides dicentrarchi (syn. Miamiensis avidus), a novel and potentially emergent pathogen in sharks.

PubMed | University of Salford and International Zoo Veterinary Group
Type: | Journal: Veterinary parasitology | Year: 2016

Tapeworms of the genus Echinococcus reside in the small intestine of a number of carnivorous species, predominantly canids. In enzootic areas, hydatidosis caused by taeniid metacestodes can present a significant problem in accidental intermediate hosts, including humans. Whereas the United Kingdom is currently considered free of Echinococcus multilocularis, Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (s.s.) and Echinococcus equinus are endemic in the UK and have been reported in a variety of captive mammals. The presentation of echinoccocosis in non-human primates widely parallels disease in humans, and public health concerns are related to the four genera, E. granulosus, E. multilocularis, Echinococcus vogeli and Echinococcus oligarthrus. In contrast, sporadic outbreaks and individual hydatid disease cases in non-human primates have been associated with several Echinococcus and Taenia species. Here we describe three fatal cases of cystic echinococcosis in two captive ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta) and one captive red-ruffed lemur (Varecia variegata rubra) and provide molecular tapeworm characterisation. To the best of the authors knowledge, this includes the first report of Echinococcus ortleppi in a UK born ring-tailed lemur and provides the first in depth case reports of echinococcosis due to E. equinus in UK born ring-tailed and red ruffed lemurs with detailed clinical and pathological findings. The cestode life cycle and implications for zoo collections are discussed.

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