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1 October 2015 Interactions between the Avian Parasite, Philornis downsi (Diptera: Muscidae) and the Galapagos Flycatcher, Myiarchus magnirostris Gould (Passeriformes: Tyrannidae)
Piedad Lincango, Charlotte Causton, Daniel Cedeño, Johanna Castañeda, Alexandra Hillstrom, Deborah Freund
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Abstract

An incidental observation of the fly Philornis downsi parasitizing a Galapagos Flycatcher (Myiarchus magnirostris) nest has revealed new insights into the searching behavior and biology of this invasive fly parasite and its interactions with endemic landbirds in the Galapagos Islands. Observations suggest that P. downsi relies on olfactory cues, or olfactory cues combined with the activity of adult birds, to locate nests and that flies continue to visit nests when chicks are >3 d old. At least 200 eggs were laid by P. downsi in different parts of the nest and >40 early-instar larvae were found inside the head of one chick, with additional larvae found in the base of the nest. Parasitism was the likely cause of mortality of both chicks found in or near the nest. This description of P. downsi parasitizing chicks of M. magnirostris highlights the vulnerability of this endemic bird species to this invasive fly.

© Wildlife Disease Association 2015
Piedad Lincango, Charlotte Causton, Daniel Cedeño, Johanna Castañeda, Alexandra Hillstrom, and Deborah Freund "Interactions between the Avian Parasite, Philornis downsi (Diptera: Muscidae) and the Galapagos Flycatcher, Myiarchus magnirostris Gould (Passeriformes: Tyrannidae)," Journal of Wildlife Diseases 51(4), 907-910, (1 October 2015). https://doi.org/10.7589/2015-01-025
Received: 30 January 2015; Accepted: 1 April 2015; Published: 1 October 2015
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