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Avian Pathol. 1999 Feb;28(1):94-7.

Intestinal protozoa and associated bacteria in captive houbara bustards (Chlamydotis undulata) in the United Arab Emirates.

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National Avian Research Center, Sweihan, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.


A protozoal survey was carried out in 114 captive houbara bustards (Chlamydotis undulata) in the United Arab Emirates. Trichomonas gallinarum, Chilomastix gallinarum, Giardia spp. and Lophomonas spp. were detected from faecal samples of 49 (43%) captive houbara bustards. Culture and identification studies were carried out to assess associated bacteria. The bacteria isolated from birds negative to protozoa included Enterococcus spp., Aerococcus spp., Micrococci spp., Proteus spp., Enterobacter spp., Escherichia coli and Klebsiella spp., while Enterococcus spp., Micrococci kristinae, Aerococcus spp., Staphylococcus sciuri, Staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, Klebsiella spp. and Alcaligenes faecalis were isolated from protozoa positive birds. Proteus spp., Enterobacter spp., E. coli , Klebsiella spp., Aerococcus spp. and Enterococcus spp. are considered part of the normal intestinal bacterial flora of captive bustards and they were also isolated from the food items used to feed the captive bustards. S. sciuri possibly originated from ingested mice; Alcaligenes faecalis and Micrococcus spp. are contaminants from soil or water.


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