Date of this Version
Hartup, B.K. Surveillance for west nile virus at the International Crane Foundation 2000-2004. In: Folk, MJ and SA Nesbitt, eds. 2008. Proceedings of the Tenth North American Crane Workshop, Feb. 7-10, 2006, Zacatecas City, Zacatecas, Mexico: North American Crane Working Group. pp. 111-114.
Between 2000 and 2004, serum samples collected annually from captive cranes at the International Crane Foundation (ICF) were analyzed for the presence of West Nile virus (WNV) antibodies using a plaque reduction neutralization test. Eighteen individual cranes representing 8 species were identified with positive titers (geometric mean = 188, range 40 – 1280, n = 29). Whooping cranes (Grus americana) represented the largest proportion of seropositive individuals (33%). Flock seroprevalence increased rapidly in 2003 and 2004 to a peak of 10%, representing a four-fold increase following index cases in 2000. None of the seropositive cranes, however, showed clinical signs consistent with WNV-related disease during the study. The results suggest that exposure of ICF captive cranes to WNV is relatively common and re-affirmed the decision to implement a limited vaccination plan for hatch year whooping cranes believed to be at risk of disease from WNV.