Translator Disclaimer
1 October 2018 TICK VECTOR AND DISEASE PATHOGEN SURVEILLANCE OF NILGAI ANTELOPE (BOSELAPHUS TRAGOCAMELUS) IN SOUTHEASTERN TEXAS, USA
Pia U. Olafson, Donald B. Thomas, Melinda A. May, Beverly G. Buckmeier, Roberta A. Duhaime
Author Affiliations +
Abstract

Nilgai (Boselaphus tragocamelus) are nonnative bovines that were originally introduced as game animals to one large, south Texas, US ranch but that are now present throughout southeastern Texas from Baffin Bay to Harlingen and in northern Mexico at least as far west as Durango. Between October 2014 and January 2017, nilgai (n=517) were examined for the presence of tick ectoparasites, with particular interest in the cattle fever tick, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus. These animals were either hunter killed or they were culled as part of federal cooperative harvesting from Cameron and Willacy counties in southeastern Texas. The proportion of fever tick-infested animals differed in a N-to-S pattern, and this was at least partly attributed to differences in habitat. The southern area is a lowland floodplain predominated by halophytes, whereas the northerly area is upland thorn scrub, the latter of which provides a vegetative canopy that is more conducive to tick survival and persistence. A subset of nilgai, all from the Texas–Mexico border area, were screened for livestock pathogens using molecular and serological assays. All nilgai were seronegative for Babesia (Theileria) equi and Babesia cabalii. Although 11 animals were seropositive for Anaplasma marginale by competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (cELISA), these were interpreted with caution because of the lack of concordance between cELISA and molecular detection assays. All animals were PCR negative for presence of Babesia spp. DNA, and a single nilgai was seropositive for Babesia bovis and Babesia bigemina by complement fixation. It remains unknown whether cattle Babesia spp. can establish an infection in nilgai.

© Wildlife Disease Association 2018
Pia U. Olafson, Donald B. Thomas, Melinda A. May, Beverly G. Buckmeier, and Roberta A. Duhaime "TICK VECTOR AND DISEASE PATHOGEN SURVEILLANCE OF NILGAI ANTELOPE (BOSELAPHUS TRAGOCAMELUS) IN SOUTHEASTERN TEXAS, USA," Journal of Wildlife Diseases 54(4), 734-744, (1 October 2018). https://doi.org/10.7589/2017-09-239
Received: 28 September 2017; Accepted: 20 February 2018; Published: 1 October 2018
JOURNAL ARTICLE
11 PAGES


Share
SHARE
KEYWORDS
Anaplasma
Babesia
cattle fever tick
cattle fever tick eradication program
nilgai
tick ecology
RIGHTS & PERMISSIONS
Get copyright permission
Back to Top