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Geographic variation in prevalence and parasitemia of Haemoproteus paruli in the cerulean warbler (Dendroica cerulea)

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Although host–parasite interactions can affect the ecology and distribution of species, virtually nothing is known about range-wide variation in haematozoan levels in North American birds. We investigated haematozoan prevalence and parasitemia in 112 adult male cerulean warblers (Dendroica cerulea (Wilson, 1810)) in six populations throughout this species' breeding range. Thirty-six birds were infected with Haemoproteus paruli at low parasitemia (mean ± 1 SE, 6.18 ± 1.27 parasites/2000 erythrocytes). Prevalence did not differ between age classes, and there was no significant relationship between parasitism and body condition. However, prevalence and parasitemia were significantly higher in southern populations and further study is required to elucidate factors underlying regional differences in cerulean warbler haematozoan levels.

Bien que les interactions hôtes–parasites puissent affecter l'écologie et la répartition des espèces, on ne connaît à peu près rien de la variation des niveaux de parasitisme par les hématozoaires chez les oiseaux nord-américains à l'échelle de leur aire de répartition géographique. Nous avons étudié la présence et la parasitémie des hématozoaires chez 112 parulines azurées (Dendroica cerulea (Wilson, 1810)) adultes mâles dans six populations distribuées sur l'aire de répartition. Trente-six oiseaux portent une faible parasitémie à Haemoproteus paruli (moyenne ± erreur type; 6,18 ± 1,27 parasites/2000 érythrocytes). L'incidence ne varie pas en fonction des classes d'âge et il n'y a pas de relation significative entre le parasitisme et la condition corporelle. Néanmoins, l'incidence et la parasitémie sont significativement plus importantes dans les populations du sud; des études supplémentaires sont requises pour identifier les facteurs qui expliquent les différences régionales dans les niveaux de parasitisme par les hématozoaires chez la paruline azurée.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2005-04-01

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  • Published since 1929, this monthly journal reports on primary research contributed by respected international scientists in the broad field of zoology, including behaviour, biochemistry and physiology, developmental biology, ecology, genetics, morphology and ultrastructure, parasitology and pathology, and systematics and evolution. It also invites experts to submit review articles on topics of current interest.
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