Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Disease Risks When Moving Wildlife To New Areas: Endangered Laysan Duck Cautionary Tale

Date:
August 20, 2009
Source:
United States Geological Survey
Summary:
Laysan ducks, one of the world's most endangered waterfowl, are native to only the Hawaiian archipelago. For 150 years, Laysan ducks were restricted to an estimated 4 square kilometers of land on Laysan Island in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands. In 2004 and 2005, in an effort to rebuild the population, biologists released 42 Laysan ducks on Midway Atoll, located one day's boat ride from Laysan.

Laysan ducks, one of the world's most endangered waterfowl, are native to only the Hawaiian archipelago. For 150 years, Laysan ducks were restricted to an estimated 4 square kilometers of land on Laysan Island in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands. In 2004 and 2005, in an effort to rebuild the population, biologists released 42 Laysan ducks on Midway Atoll, located one day's boat ride from Laysan.

By 2007, a breeding population was well established on Midway, reaching 200 ducks. However, in August 2008, more than half of the Midway duck population (181 ducks) was lost to a disease epidemic lasting 30 days. Necropsies (the animal equivalent of autopsies) on dead birds revealed botulism type C as a cause of the die-off.

Disturbingly, said Work, 3 ducks were also infected with a worm suspected to be Echinuria uncinata; this worm has been responsible for mass die-offs of Laysan ducks on Laysan Island. Work notes that this worm was either moved to Midway during translocations of ducks from Laysan, despite preventive treatment of all founding birds, or it arrived with migratory waterfowl.

Either way, says Work, this epizootic highlights the disease risk to birds restricted to small island populations and the challenges associated with managing newly translocated endangered species. Frequent population monitoring for early disease detection and comprehensive wetland monitoring and management will be needed to offset the potential effects of avian botulism and parasitism on endangered Laysan ducks, Work said.

The bigger picture, though, is that disease risks need to be closely examined for translocations of all kinds, especially in light of translocations being proposed for dealing with habitat range changes that affect endangered species due to climate change.

This research was presented by the USGS at the Wildlife Disease Association Conference in the first week of August, 2009.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by United States Geological Survey. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

United States Geological Survey. "Disease Risks When Moving Wildlife To New Areas: Endangered Laysan Duck Cautionary Tale." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 August 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090803210148.htm>.
United States Geological Survey. (2009, August 20). Disease Risks When Moving Wildlife To New Areas: Endangered Laysan Duck Cautionary Tale. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090803210148.htm
United States Geological Survey. "Disease Risks When Moving Wildlife To New Areas: Endangered Laysan Duck Cautionary Tale." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090803210148.htm (accessed August 30, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Drug ZMapp Cures Lab Monkeys Of Disease

Experimental Ebola Drug ZMapp Cures Lab Monkeys Of Disease

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) In a new study, a promising experimental treatment for Ebola managed to cure a group of infected macaque monkeys. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Australian Sheep Gets Long Overdue Haircut

Raw: Australian Sheep Gets Long Overdue Haircut

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) Hoping to break the record for world's wooliest, Shaun the sheep came up 10 pounds shy with his fleece weighing over 50 pounds after being shorn for the first time in years. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins