EcoHealth

, 3:95 | Cite as

Dynamics of Mycoplasmal Conjunctivitis in the Native and Introduced Range of the Host

  • André A. Dhondt
  • Alexander V. Badyaev
  • Andrew P. Dobson
  • Dana M. Hawley
  • Melanie J.L. Driscoll
  • Wesley M. Hochachka
  • David H. Ley
Article

Abstract

In 1994, Mycoplasma gallisepticum, a common bacterial poultry pathogen, caused an epidemic in house finches in the eastern part of their North American range where the species had been introduced in the 1940s. Birds with mycoplasmal conjunctivitis were reported across the entire eastern United States within 3–4 years. Here we track the course of the Mycoplasma gallisepticum epidemic as it reached native, western North American populations of the house finch. In 2002, Mycoplasma gallisepticum was first observed in a native house finch population in Missoula, MT, where it gradually increased in prevalence during the next 2 years. Concurrently, house finches with conjunctivitis were reported with increasing number in the Pacific Northwest. In native populations of the host, the epidemic expanded more slowly, and reached lower levels of prevalence than in the eastern, introduced range of the species. Maximal prevalence was about half in the Missoula population than in local populations in the East. Although many factors can contribute to these differences, we argue that it is most likely the higher genetic heterogeneity in western than in eastern populations caused the lower impact of the pathogen.

Keywords

Mycoplasma gallisepticum Carpodacus mexicanus house finch genetic bottleneck epidemic House Finch Disease Survey 

References

  1. Altizer S, Hochachka WM, Dhondt AA (2004) Seasonal dynamics of mycoplasmal conjunctivitis in eastern North American House Finches. Journal of Animal Ecology 73:309–322CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Able KP, Belthoff JR (1998) Rapid ‘evolution’ of migratory behaviour in the introduced house finch of eastern North America. Proceedings of the Royal Society, London, Series B 265:2063–2071CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Acevedo-Whitehouse K, Gulland F, Greig D, Amos B (2003) Disease susceptibility in California sea lions. Nature 422:35CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Badyaev AV, Martin TE (2000) Sexual dimorphism in relation to current selection in the house finch. Evolution 54:987–997PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Cherry JJ, Ley DH, Altizer S (2006) Genotypic analyses of Mycoplasma gallisepticum isolates from songbirds by random amplification of polymorphic DNA and amplified-fragment length polymorphism. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 42 (in press) Google Scholar
  6. Coltman DW, Pilkington JG, Smith JA, Pemberton JM (1999) Parasite-mediated selection against inbred Soay sheep in a free-living, island population. Evolution 53:1259–1267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Dhondt AA, Altizer S, Cooch EG, Davis AK, Dobson A, Driscoll MJL, et al. (2005) Dynamics of a novel pathogen in an avian host: mycoplasmal conjunctivitis in house finches. Acta Tropica 94:77–93CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Dhondt AA, Tessaglia DL, Slothower RL (1998) Epidemic mycoplasmal conjunctivitis in house finches from eastern North America. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 34:265–280PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Duckworth RA, Badyaev AV, Farmer KL, Hill GE, Roberts SR (2003) First case of mycoplasmosis in the native range of the house finch (Carpodacus mexicanus). Auk 120:528–530CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Elliott JJ, Arbib S (1953) Origin and status of the house finch in the eastern United States. Auk 70:31–37Google Scholar
  11. Fischer JR, Stallknecht DE, Luttrell MP, Dhondt AA, Converse KA (1997) Mycoplasmal conjunctivitis in wild songbirds: the spread of a new contagious disease in a mobile host population. Emerging Infectious Diseases 3:69–72PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hartup BK, Bickal JM, Dhondt AA, Ley DH, Kollias GV (2001) Dynamics of conjunctivitis and Mycoplasma gallisepticum infections in house finches. Auk 118:327–333CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hartup BK, Stott-Messick B, Guzy M, Ley DH (2004) Health survey of house finches (Carpodacus mexicanus) from Wisconsin. Avian Diseases 48:84–90PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Hawley DM, Sydenstricker KV, Kollias GV, Dhondt AA (2005) Genetic diversity predicts pathogen resistance and cell-mediated immunocompetence in house finches. Biology Letters 1:326–329CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hawley DM, Hanley D, Dhondt AA, Lovette IJ (2006) Molecular evidence for a founder effect in invasive house finch (Carpodacus mexicanus) populations experiencing an emergent disease epidemic. Molecular Ecology 15:263–275CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Hochachka WM, Dhondt AA (2000) Density-dependent decline of host abundance resulting from a new infectious disease. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 97:5303–5306CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Lepage D, Francis CM (2002) Do feeder counts reliably indicate bird population changes? 21 years of winter bird counts in Ontario, Canada. Condor 104:255–270CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ley DH, Sheaffer DS, Dhondt AA (2006) Further western spread of Mycoplasma gallisepticum infection of house finches. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 42 (in press) Google Scholar
  19. Lively CM, Craddock C, Vrijenhoek RC (1990) Red Queen Hypothesis supported by parasitism in sexual and clonal fish. Nature 344:864–866CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. MacDougall-Shackleton EA, Derryberry EP, Foufopoulos J, Dobson AP, Hahn TP (2005) Parasite-mediated heterozygote advantage in an outbred songbird population. Biology Letters 1:105–107CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. McClure HE (1989) Epizootic lesions of house finches in Ventura County, California. Journal of Field Ornithology 60:421–430Google Scholar
  22. Meagher S (1999) Genetic diversity and Capillaria hepatica (Nematoda) prevalence in Michigan deer mouse populations. Evolution 53:1318–1324CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Nagatomo H, Takegahara Y, Sonoda T, Yamaguchi A, Uemura R, Hagiwara S, et al. (2001) Comparative studies of the persistence of animal mycoplasmas under different environmental conditions. Veterinary Microbiology 82:223–232CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. Nolan PM, Hill GE, Stoehr AM (1998) Sex, size, and plumage redness predict house finch survival in an epidemic. Proceedings of the Royal Society, London, Series B 265:961–965CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Pearman PB, Garner TWJ (2005) Susceptibility of Italian agile frog populations to an emerging strain of Ranavirus parallels population genetic diversity. Ecology Letters 8:401–408CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Pillai SR, Mays HL, Ley DH, Luttrell P, Panangala VS, Farmer KL, et al. (2003) Molecular variability of house finch Mycoplasma gallisepticum isolates as revealed by sequencing and restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis of the pvpA gene. Avian Diseases 47:640–648PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Wells JV, Rosenberg KV, Dunn EH, Tessaglia-Hymes DL, Dhondt AA (1998) Feeder counts as indicators of spatial and temporal variation in winter abundance of resident birds. Journal of Field Ornithology 69:577–586Google Scholar
  28. Woolhouse MEJ, Haydon DT, Antia R (2005) Emerging pathogens: the epidemiology and evolution of species jumps. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 20:238–244CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • André A. Dhondt
    • 1
  • Alexander V. Badyaev
    • 2
  • Andrew P. Dobson
    • 3
  • Dana M. Hawley
    • 1
    • 4
  • Melanie J.L. Driscoll
    • 1
  • Wesley M. Hochachka
    • 1
  • David H. Ley
    • 5
  1. 1.Laboratory of OrnithologyCornell UniversityIthacaUSA
  2. 2.Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of ArizonaTucsonUSA
  3. 3.Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyPrinceton UniversityPrincetonUSA
  4. 4.Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyCornell UniversityIthacaUSA
  5. 5.College of Veterinary MedicineNorth Carolina State UniversityRaleighUSA

Personalised recommendations