Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) viruses of the H5N1 subtype have spread throughout many areas of Asia, Europe and Africa, and numerous cases of HPAI outbreaks in domestic and wild birds have been reported. Although recent studies suggest that the dissemination of H5N1 viruses is closely linked to the migration of wild birds, information on the potential for viral infection in species other than poultry and waterfowl is relatively limited. To investigate the susceptibility of terrestrial wild birds to infection with H5N1 HPAI viruses, common reed buntings (Emberiza schoeniclus), pale thrushes (Turdus pallidus) and brown-eared bulbuls (Hypsipetes amaurotis) were infected with A/mountain hawk-eagle/Kumamoto/1/07(H5N1) and A/whooper swan/Aomori/1/08(H5N1). The results showed that common reed buntings and brown-eared bulbuls were severely affected by both virus strains (100% mortality). While pale thrushes did not exhibit any clinical signs, seroconversion was confirmed. In common reed buntings, intraspecies-transmission of A/whooper swan/Aomori/1/08 to contact birds was also confirmed. The findings show that three passerine species; common reed buntings, brown-eared bulbuls and pale thrushes are susceptible to infection by H5N1 HPAI viruses, which emphasizes that continued surveillance of species other than waterfowl is crucial for effective monitoring of H5N1 HPAI virus outbreaks.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Food Animals
- Animal Science and Zoology
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)