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The Avian MigrantThe Biology of Bird Migration$
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John Rappole

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231146784

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231146784.001.0001

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Migratory Birds and Pathogen Movement

Migratory Birds and Pathogen Movement

(p.270) Chapter 9 Migratory Birds and Pathogen Movement
The Avian Migrant

John H. Rappole

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses the role of avian migrants in the movement and spread of pathogens, with particular emphasis on West Nile virus (WNV) and avian influenza. Migratory birds can serve as hosts for many kinds of viral and bacterial pathogens. In particular, avian involvement in the epidemiology of both WNV and avian influenza has been well documented. Despite lack of conclusive data, a general consensus has been reached in the published literature that migratory birds were the principal agents responsible for the introduction and spread of WNV in the Western Hemisphere during the epidemic that began in August 1999 and for the introduction and movement of avian influenza subtype H5N1 across Eurasia and into Africa that began in 1996.

Keywords:   avian migrants, pathogens, West Nile virus, avian influenza, migratory birds, Western Hemisphere, epidemic, H5N1, Africa, Eurasia

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