We conducted surveillance for Riemerella anatipestifer (RA) in wild birds along the East Asian-Australasian flyway in South Korea. Detected RA were characterized by serotype, antibiotic susceptibility, and sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA gene. We collected 944 wild birds of 34 species from 19 of South Korea's major migratory wild bird habitats between 2011 and 2012. We identified RA by PCR and rRNA gene sequence in 71/102 (69.6%) pharyngeal swabs and 19/944 (2.0%) cloacal swabs of wild birds. Most RA positives (71/75 [95%] pharyngeal and 19/704 [(2.6%] cloacal) were from three duck species (family Anatidae): Mallard Duck (Anas platyrhynchos), Northern Pintail (Anas acuta), and Spot-billed Duck (Anas poecilorhyncha). Thirty-three RA isolates obtained and examined were highly resistant to aminoglycosides: kanamycin (100%), gentamicin (94%), amikacin (91%), neomycin (88%), and streptomycin (82%). Six isolates were identified as serotype 4 by agar gel precipitation. Serotypes 1 and 7, which are known virulent serotypes, were also identified in three isolates from wild duck species.
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Vol. 51 • No. 2