Galapagos Hawks (Buteo galapagoensis), the only endemic, diurnal raptor species in Galapagos, are currently distributed on eight Galapagos Islands having been extirpated from three of the human-inhabited islands. In January 2009, we performed health assessments of 89 Galapagos Hawks on Santiago Island, Galapagos. Four of the 89 Galapagos Hawks (4%) evaluated had physical abnormalities. Blood parameters did not differ between males and females, except for aspartate transaminase values, which were significantly higher in females than males. No Galapagos Hawks tested positive for antibodies to avian encephalitis virus, Marek virus, and paramyxovirus-1 or to haemosporidian antigen. Chlamydophila psittaci antigen was detected in 2 of 86 Galapagos Hawks (2%), with 24 of 43 Galapagos Hawks (56%) antibody-positive for avian adenovirus-1 and 1 of 48 Galapagos Hawks (2%) antibody positive for Toxoplasma gondii. There were no significant differences in infectious disease results based on sex. This study contributes to the understanding of the health status of the Galapagos Hawk and to the establishment of baseline information for the species.
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Vol. 48 • No. 1