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Onderstepoort J Vet Res ; 90(1): e1-e8, 2023 Apr 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37042558


Neospora caninum is a coccidian parasite that occurs worldwide and is one of the most important causes of abortion, especially in cattle. However, no studies have been performed in Namibia to determine the N. caninum status in livestock. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the seroprevalence of N. caninum in cattle and the associated risk factors in the Khomas region of Namibia. A total of 736 sera were collected from cows in 32 farming establishments. These comprised 698 beef and 38 dairy cattle sera and were tested using a commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kit. Questionnaires were concurrently administered to determine possible risk factors associated with N. caninum seropositivity. A total of 42 sera were positive (all beef), giving an animal-level seroprevalence rate of 5.7%. Eight of the 32 establishments had at least one positive animal, giving a herd-level seroprevalence of 25%. There was no significant association between seropositivity and the presence of dogs, jackals, history of abortions, farm size, number of cattle or average annual rainfall. The establishments with moderate to high numbers of Feliformia were 9.8 times more likely to be seropositive to N. caninum than those with none to low levels of the former (p = 0.0245). The authors concluded that the seroprevalence level of N. caninum in the Khomas region was relatively low compared with other parts of the world and that the role of Feliformia in the epidemiology of bovine neosporosis needed to be further investigated.Contribution: Serological evidence of bovine neosporosis and the associated risk factors are reported in Namibia for the first time. This study contributes to the scientific body of knowledge on N. caninum in Africa, which is currently limited.

Doenças dos Bovinos , Coccidiose , Neospora , Animais , Bovinos , Anticorpos Antiprotozoários/sangue , Doenças dos Bovinos/sangue , Doenças dos Bovinos/diagnóstico , Doenças dos Bovinos/epidemiologia , Doenças dos Bovinos/parasitologia , Coccidiose/sangue , Coccidiose/epidemiologia , Coccidiose/parasitologia , Coccidiose/veterinária , Namíbia/epidemiologia , Fatores de Risco , Estudos Soroepidemiológicos , Feliformes
Evolution ; 74(12): 2681-2702, 2020 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33085081


The skeleton is a complex arrangement of anatomical structures that covary to various degrees depending on both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Among the Feliformia, many species are characterized by predator lifestyles providing a unique opportunity to investigate the impact of highly specialized hypercarnivorous diet on phenotypic integration and shape diversity. To do so, we compared the shape of the skull, mandible, humerus, and femur of species in relation to their feeding strategies (hypercarnivorous vs. generalist species) and prey preference (predators of small vs. large prey) using three-dimensional geometric morphometric techniques. Our results highlight different degrees of morphological integration in the Feliformia depending on the functional implication of the anatomical structure, with an overall higher covariation of structures in hypercarnivorous species. The skull and the forelimb are not integrated in generalist species, whereas they are integrated in hypercarnivores. These results can potentially be explained by the different feeding strategies of these species. Contrary to our expectations, hypercarnivores display a higher disparity for the skull than generalist species. This is probably due to the fact that a specialization toward high-meat diet could be achieved through various phenotypes. Finally, humeri and femora display shape variations depending on relative prey size preference. Large species feeding on large prey tend to have robust long bones due to higher biomechanical constraints.

Adaptação Biológica , Evolução Biológica , Carnivoridade/fisiologia , Feliformes/anatomia & histologia , Fenótipo , Esqueleto/anatomia & histologia , Animais , Dieta
Sci Total Environ ; 666: 581-590, 2019 May 20.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30807948


Anticoagulant rodenticides (ARs) are used worldwide to control rodent populations. ARs bioaccumulate across trophic levels and threaten non-target wildlife. We investigated the prevalence of AR exposure in seven predator species in the rapidly developing Greater Cape Town region of South Africa - a mosaic of natural, urban, and agricultural areas within a global biodiversity hotspot. We focused sampling on caracals (Caracal caracal, n = 28) as part of a larger caracal ecology study, but also opportunistically sampled Cape Clawless otters (Aonyx capensis, n = 9), large-spotted genets (Genetta tigrina, n = 4), honey badger (Mellivora capensis, n = 1), water mongoose (Atilax paludinosus, n = 1), small gray mongoose (Galerella pulverulenta, n = 1), and Cape Eagle owl (Bubo capensis, n = 1). We tested livers from all species, and blood from ten caracals, for eight AR compounds to assess prevalence and amount of exposure for each compound. We used generalized linear models to test spatial, demographic, and seasonal risk factors for ten measures of AR exposure in caracals. We detected at least one of the four most toxic AR compounds in six species. Exposure was high for caracals (92%) and all species combined (81%). For caracals, proximity to vineyards was the most important AR exposure risk factor. Vineyards in Cape Town do not use ARs to protect their vines but do host commercial hospitality structures where ARs are used. Vineyards may thus link caracals that forage within vineyards to the rat poisons used in and around their commercial structures. Residue levels were unexpected in large-spotted genets and Cape Clawless otters, suggesting invertebrate vectors. ARs may present a cryptic threat to populations already vulnerable to increasing habitat loss, vehicle collisions, poachers and fire. Targeted mitigation should include a mix of environmentally responsible policies that reduce AR use, particularly in areas near wildlife habitat.

Anticoagulantes/metabolismo , Exposição Ambiental/análise , Felidae/metabolismo , Rodenticidas/metabolismo , Animais , Anticoagulantes/sangue , Cidades , Monitoramento Ambiental , Feliformes/metabolismo , Rodenticidas/sangue , África do Sul , Estrigiformes/metabolismo