Infestation of two brown-headed cowbirds (molothrus ater) with the hunchback mite (harpirhynchus quasimodo)

Jessica Magenwirth, Nicole M. Nemeth, Michael J. Yabsley, Brandon A. Munk, M. Kevin Keel, Justin D. Brown

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Abstract

A recently described North American mite, Harpirhynchus quasimodo (Acariformes: Harpirhynchidae), was identified in a wild brown-headed cowbird (Molothrus ater) from Tennessee and another from Arkansas, U. S. A., during 2010 and 2011, respectively. Consistent with a single previous report of H. quasimodo infestation, both cowbirds had multiple skin masses composed of epidermal cysts filled with harpirhynchid mites, keratin, and cellular debris. Although very little is currently known about this avian mite, these three reports suggest that H. quasimodo infestation is a rare source of overt disease in free-ranging brown-headed cowbirds from the southeastern United States; however, further research and surveillance efforts are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)818-821
Number of pages4
JournalAvian diseases
Volume57
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2013

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Animals
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)

Cite this

Magenwirth, J., Nemeth, N. M., Yabsley, M. J., Munk, B. A., Keel, M. K., & Brown, J. D. (2013). Infestation of two brown-headed cowbirds (molothrus ater) with the hunchback mite (harpirhynchus quasimodo). Avian diseases, 57(4), 818-821. https://doi.org/10.1637/10526-031113-Case.1