Forty-one outbreaks of mortality in wild finches were reported in southern Norway, Sweden, and Finland in the second half of 2008 (n = 40) and in February 2009 (n = 1). Greenfinches (Carduelis chloris) and occasional chaffinches (Fringilla coelebs) primarily were affected. Forty-eight greenfinches, eight chaffinches, one hawfinch (Coccothraustes coccothraustes), and one blue tit (Parus caeruleus) from 22 incidents were examined postmortem. Birds were in poor nutritional condition and had necrotizing ingluvitis, esophagitis, and/or oropharyngitis. Viable trichomonads with morphology consistent with Trichomonas gallinae were demonstrated successfully in 65% and 71% of fresh carcasses examined by culture and wet mount, respectively. No primary bacterial pathogens were detected. To our knowledge, this is the first report of epizootic trichomoniasis in wild finches in Europe outside of the U.K.
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Vol. 54 • No. 1