Health in arctic and antarctic breeding birds

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Loonen, Maarten add comments on this topic with the form at the bottom of this page
Workshop 22-24 March 2006 in Groningen. Please join a.s.a.p.

Read more about project proposals in the Netherlands under the news-button.

Lanctot, Rick: reaction on previous text
 Dear Maarten, I do not have the funds to join you at your workshop (much less the time). However, if you and the rest of the colleagues come up with some easy, and practical way that folks in North America can provide information to your project please let us know. We anticipate capturing a large number of birds this coming summer as part of an evaluation on whether shorebirds are bringing the highly pathogenic H5N1 avian virus to the United States. Thus, we plan to capture several hundred dunlin, pectoral sandpiper, bar-tailed godwit, sharp-tailed sandpipers, and 6 other species.
Right now, I am trying to envision a wider application to this capture. We could likely sample the birds for other things if the methods were easy to implement and had a clear goal in site. Cheers, Rick
Boulinier, Thierry: reaction on previous text
 Dear Maarten and others, All that seems great. Thanks for organizing the workshop in Groningen. We should be able to have one of us participating. I can recall that we are interested in the evolutionary ecology of host-parasite interactions, using seabirds as models. Two main axes of our work are (1) the evolutionary ecology of host specialisation, with the seabird-tick system as a model (e.g., McCoy al. 2005 Proc Roy Soc B), and (2) the evolutionary ecology of the maternal transfer of antibodies (e.g., Gasparini et al. 2001, Proc Roy Soc B). We are working notably in Northern Norway, in collaboration with Torkild Tveraa, and we are both interested in(i) increasing our sampling of seabird ticks _Ixodes uriae_ and blood plasma from various locations/host species (we can send our simple sampling protocole upon request), and (ii) contributing to sampling in arctic seabird colonies for other groups (e.g., the Coccidiosis study of Olga Dolnik). I guess the workshop should be the occasion to discuss these things together, but I agree with Rick (Lanctot) that we should make sure that the potential contributions of people who will not attend the meeting are considered. Andres, if you think you can put your hands on penguin ticks, we would be very interested by those! Cheers, Thierry Boulinier (+ Karen McCoy, Vincent Staszewski and others)
Braune, Birgit: reaction on previous text
 Dear Maarten, Although I was originally planning to propose some work on effects of contaminants in arctic seabirds, I will no longer be pursuing that work. However, I will still be looking at contaminants in selected seabird species and their prey. If someone else wishes to utilize the birds collected (thick-billed murres, and possibly northern fulmars), for pathological or parasitological studies, they should contact Tony Gaston, who is organizing the collections.
Jenkins, Emily: reaction on previous text
 Hi Maarten,
Unfortunately the dates don't work for me, but I am definitely interested in the outcome of the meeting (ie a standardized protocol). Here is what we have for a Canadian sampling plan (based on the very helpful documents that you sent):

Potential parameters to measure (live, hunter-killed, and found-dead birds):

Parasites: Ectoparasites (ticks, lice, fleas), coccidiosis, intestinal parasites, hemoparasites, tissue parasites (Toxoplasma, Sarcocystis)

Bacteria: Pasteurella multocida - avian cholera, zoonotic bacteria including Campylobacter, Salmonella, Borrelia burgdorferi

Viruses: avian influenza, West Nile Virus, Avian paramyxovirus - Newcastle's Disease

Immunity: White blood cell counts and differential, overall antibody levels and specific response to antigen challenge, measure of cell mediated immunity (phytohaemagglutinin in wing web skin) and innate immunity (chemiluminescence)

Contaminants (preening gland wax for fat-soluble POP's; liver, kidney... integrate with COPOL?)

Fitness: survival, clutch size, number of fledglings, offspring survival, body condition, social hierarchy),

Sampling protocol (to be standardized at workshop Mar 22-24, 2006 in Netherlands).
*Body condition
*Cloacal swabs/feces (virology, bacteriology, parasitology)
*Nasopharyngeal swabs (virology, bacteriology)
*Blood (serology, hemoparasites, pathogens, CBC)
*Biomarkers of stress
*Immune function
*Post mortem and pathogen recovery

All the best, Emily Jenkins

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