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Category: How To Get Rid Of Fleas In House | 22.07.2014
This great kiskadee chick is covered with parasitic fly larvae, the result of increased temperatures and precipitation levels that possibly stem from climate change. The study, which looked at nesting forest birds in Santa Fe, Argentina, found that increases in temperature and precipitation produce a bumper crop of parasitic fly larvae of the species Philornis torquans, parasites that burrow into the skin of baby birds to feed. Carried out by field veterinarians and biologists between September and March of 2006-7 and 2007-8, the study focused on both the prevalence and abundance of parasitic larvae in the study area’s bird community and the impact of parasites on the growth and survival of bird nestlings. The researchers also examined the influence of environmental factors on parasite prevalence and abundance, noting a positive correlation between variations in climatic variables (temperature and precipitation levels) and parasite loads on nestlings. During the course of the study, researchers examined the nests of 41 bird species (715 chicks) within a 30-hectare area (74 acres) of forest, gathering data on nest height, brood size, body mass of chicks, and the number of parasites on each bird.

Predictably, researchers found that the more larvae the baby birds carried, the higher the chance of mortality; chicks with 10 larvae were twice as likely to die as chicks without parasites.
A Major Blow to South Africa’s Canned Lion Hunting Industry as African Lions Gain Protection Under U.S. 28, 2010 - A Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) study on nesting birds in Argentina finds that increasing temperatures and rainfall -- both side effects of climate change in some parts of the world -- could be bad for birds of South America, but great for some of their parasites which thrive in warmer and wetter conditions. The researchers also found that these greater parasite burdens result in higher probability of mortality and impaired growth for the parasitized chicks. The fly larvae—large in relation to the size of the chick—were easily identified by the bulges on the heads, bodies and wings of the baby birds.

The parasites were found on half (20) of the bird species studied, with the majority found on only four passerine species: the great kiskadee, the greater thornbird, the little thornbird, and the freckle-breasted thornbird. These species were monitored every three days for data on the impact of parasites on survival and growth.

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