Salmonellae in one Falcon Breeding Facility in the Czech Republic during the period 1989-1993

Veterinarni Medicina 44, 1999, 345-352

During 1989 and 1993, a total of 837 samples of biological materials from the Falcon Breeding Facility in Milotice were examined. Twenty-six strains of Salmonella were isolated from 680 samples of eggs, young birds, faeces and the organs of kept animals, whereas 28 strains were isolated from 157 samples of animals used as food. The isolated Salmonellae belonged to the serotypes Salmonella enteritidis (25 strains), S. typhimurium (28 strains) and S. typhimuriurn var. Copenhagen (one strain). Analysis of plasmid profiles allowed the further classification of S, enteritidis strains into three subtypes and S, typhimurium into two subtypes. Chronologically it was possible to see the incidence of individual Salmonella subtypes. This result eliminated a long-term infection of falconid birds of prey with one Salmonella strain. In two cases the source of Salmonella for falcons originated from food animals (mice: source of S. typhimurium, chickens: source of S. enteritidis). In other cases the infection source was not found. Although Salmonellae were detected in the organs of one falconid bird and in 4 laid eggs of falconids, we failed to detect the circulating antibodies against S. pullorum antigen by using rapid slide agglutination test. Analysis of age resistance of the falconid birds revealed that Salmonellae were most frequently found in birds from the age of day 1 to 1 year or older than 3 years. Analysis of Species sensitivity showed that Salmonellae were detected in 14 of 37 saker falcons (Falco cherrug), in 4 of 27 peregrine falcons (F. peregrinus), in both kestrels (F, tinunculus), in one of two hobby falcons (F. subbuteo), in 4 of 12 birds of a cross-breed (F. cherrug x F. peregrinus) and in one of four goshawks (Accipiter gentilis). Salmonella was isolated from two out of twenty birds which had diarrhoea. No Salmonella was isolated in faecal samples from 91 falcons (26 positive birds) and eggs from 30 females (4 females positive)

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