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An Avian Contribution to the Presence of Ixodes pacificus (Acari: Ixodidae) and Borrelia burgdorferi on the Sutter Buttes of California
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 4:39 pm    Post subject: An Avian Contribution to the Presence of Ixodes pacificus (Acari: Ixodidae) and Borrelia burgdorferi on the Sutter Buttes of California Reply with quote

Journal of Medical Entomology
2006, vol. 43, no. 2, pp. 368 - 374

An Avian Contribution to the Presence of Ixodes pacificus (Acari:
Ixodidae) and Borrelia burgdorferi on the Sutter Buttes of California

Stan A. Wright; Debbie A. Lemenager; James R. Tucker; M. Veronica
Armijos; Sheryl A. Yamamoto

Abstract
Birds from 45 species were sampled during three spring seasons from an
isolated canyon on the Sutter Buttes in California for the presence of
subadult stages of Ixodes pacificus Cooley & Kohls, and for infection
with Borrelia burgdorferi Johnson, Schmid, Hyde, Steigerwalt & Brenner.


These birds were found to have an infestation prevalence of 45%, a
density of 1.7 ticks per bird, and an intensity of 3.8 ticks per
infested bird. There was a significant difference in the I. pacificus
infestations between canopy and ground-dwelling birds. Birds also
demonstrated an overall infection with B. burgdorferi of 6.4% with
significant difference between bird species. Amplification and
subsequent sequencing of the 23s-5s rRNA intergenic spacer region of
the Borrelia genome from one bird, a hermit thrush, Catharus guttatus
(Nuttall), showed that the infection in this bird was caused by B.
burgdorferi sensu stricto; the first such finding in a bird from the
far west.

Our results suggest that birds play a role in the distribution and
maintenance of I. pacificus, and possibly of B. burgdorferi, at the
Sutter Buttes, CA.
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