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Evaluation of the health of free-ranging greater rheas (Rhea americana) in Argentina
  1. M. Uhart, MedVet1,
  2. G. Aprile2,
  3. P. Beldomenico, MedVet, MPVM3,
  4. G. Solís, MedVet2,
  5. C. Marull, MedVet1,
  6. M. Beade2,
  7. A. Carminati, LicBiol2 and
  8. D. Moreno, LicBiol,2
  1. 1Field Veterinary Program, Wildlife Conservation Society, Estivariz 197, (9120) Puerto Madryn, Chubut, Argentina
  2. 2FundaciÓn Vida Silvestre Argentina, Defensa 251, 6to K, (1065) Capital Federal, Argentina
  3. 3Facultad de Ciencias Veterinarias, Universidad Nacional del Litoral, R. P. Kreder 2805, (3080) Esperanza, Santa Fe, Argentina


The health of 22 free-ranging adult rheas (Rhea americana) examined and sampled during a translocation/reintroduction project and six juvenile rheas kept in semicaptivity was investigated, and details of their haematology and plasma biochemistry are presented. Serological testing for antibodies to infectious agents was negative for infectious laryngotracheitis, avian adenovirus, avian influenza, avian reovirus, infectious bursal disease, infectious bronchitis virus, paramyxovirus types 1, 2, and 3, fowlpox and Salmonella Pullorum. Antibodies to Chlamydophila species were found in 25 of 27 of the birds, and 22 of 25 had antibodies to Aspergillus species. Ova of gastrointestinal nematodes of the genus Capillaria were identified, and the anoplocephalid cestode Monoecocestus cf rheiphilus was identified in R americana for the first time.

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