Isolations of Pasteurella haemolytica were compared from tonsillar biopsies versus nasal passages for 29 free-ranging Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis canadensis) from central Idaho. Overall, P. haemolytica was isolated from 11 (38%) of 29 sheep. Two (18%) of the 11 positive samples were from only nasal passages compared to eight (73%) from tonsillar biopsies. Pasteurella haemolytica biotype T was isolated from tonsils of nine sheep and from nasal biopsies. Pasteurella haemlytica biotype T was isolated from tonsils of nine sheep and from nasal passages of only one sheep. Two sheep were positive for P. haemolytica biotype A from nasal passages. Culturing tonsillar biopsies as compared to nasal swab samples was a more reliable technique in detecting P. haemolytica, especially biotype T, in bighorn sheep.
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Vol. 26 • No. 2