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1 March 2011 A Serologic Survey of Viral Infections in Captive Ungulates in Turkish Zoos
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Zoos and zoologic gardens make optimal environments for interspecies transmission of viral infections. There are seven zoos and several small zoologic collections in Turkey. This study aimed to determine the current status of viral infections in captive ungulates living in these environments. Blood samples were taken from 163 captive animals from two zoos. There were 39 Cameroon sheep (Ovis ammon f. aries), 11 Barbary sheep (Ammotragus lervia), 57 pygmy goats (Capra hircus), 9 Angora goats (Capra hircus), 21 mountain goats (Capra aegagrus-aegagrus), 7 llamas (Lama glama), 8 Persian goitred gazelle (Gazella subgutturosa subgutturosa), 7 Caspian red deer (Cervus elaphus maral), 2 fallow deer (Dama dama), and 2 camels (Camelus dromedarius). Antibodies against bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV), bovine herpesvirus-1 (BHV-1), bovine adenoviruses (BAV-1 and -3), parainfluenzavirus 3 (PI-3), and bluetongue viruses (BTV-4 and -9) were investigated using the virus neutralization test, and malignant catarrhal fever (MCF) antibodies were screened by ELISA. All animals were negative for BVDV and BHV-1 antibodies. Seroprevalence of BAV-1, BAV-3, PI-3, BRSV, BT-4, BT-9, and MCF were detected as follows: 46.6%, 60.1%, 0.6%, 7.3%, 1.8%, 1.2%, and 51.6%, respectively. Seroprevalence of BAVs and MCF were more common than all other viruses (P < 0.0001). Ten sheep (37.0%), 48 goats (84.2), and 1 llama (14.2%) were the only species positive for MCF antibodies. Prevalence of BRSV and MCF antibodies were found to be significantly higher in goats than in sheep. BTV antibodies were detected both in Cameroon sheep and mountain goats and suggest that zoo animals are at risk for BTV in endemic regions.

Kadir Yeşilbağ, Gizem Alpay, and Hatice Karakuzulu "A Serologic Survey of Viral Infections in Captive Ungulates in Turkish Zoos," Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 42(1), 44-48, (1 March 2011).
Received: 21 January 2010; Published: 1 March 2011

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