Show simple item record

Files in this item


Item metadata

dc.contributor.advisorHall, Ailsa Jane
dc.contributor.advisorDagleish, Mark P.
dc.contributor.authorBaily, Johanna L.
dc.description.abstractNeonatal mortality in grey seals on the Isle of May breeding colony and in a rehabilitation centre were investigated by detailed systematic post-mortem examinations (n=59), on-site bacteriology and advanced molecular diagnostic techniques for specific pathogens. Causes of death on the breeding colony included starvation (30%), omphalitis-peritonitis (26%), septicaemia (22%), stillbirth (10%) and trauma (4%) and in the rehabilitation centre starvation (44%) and septicaemia (22%). Detailed key gross and histopathological findings and pathogens are described and include the first report of Listeria monocytogenes in any marine mammal. Phocid herpes virus 1 nucleic acids were detected in nasal swabs of 58% live, free-ranging grey seal pups (n=90) and 28% yearlings (n=19), suggesting recrudescence in the latter. Previously undetected in Scotland, phocid herpes virus 2 nucleic acids were identified only in yearlings (15%); sealpox was detected in a single live stranded grey seal pup and phocine distemper virus was not detected. Given their unique characteristics and potential for acting as sentinels of coastal marine health several pathogens of putative anthropogenic origin were investigated: Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum, Salmonella spp. and Campylobacter spp. Toxoplasma gondii DNA was detected in 6% dead free-ranging grey seal pups (n=50) but N. caninum was not found. Salmonella (20%) and Campylobacter (50%) were isolated from rectal swabs of live and dead grey seal pups and Campylobacter was significantly associated with moderate to severe colitis implying pathogenicity. These findings imply a land-sea-land transfer of T. gondii and early exposure of pups to this parasite. Extensive genetic fingerprinting suggested an exchange of Salmonella between grey seal, cattle and human populations and that the Campylobacter isolates may share the same origin as human clinical isolates. This work provides a solid base line study of diseases present in grey seal pups and demonstrates that they are useful indicators of coastal marine microbial contamination.en_US
dc.publisherUniversity of St Andrews
dc.rightsCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
dc.subjectGrey sealen_US
dc.subjectHalichoerus grypusen_US
dc.subject.lcshGray seal--Pathogens--Scotlanden_US
dc.titleThe pathology and occurrence of pathogens in Scottish grey seals (Halichoerus grypus).en_US
dc.contributor.sponsorMoredun Research Instituteen_US
dc.contributor.sponsorRoyal Zoological Society of Scotlanden_US
dc.type.qualificationnamePhD Doctor of Philosophyen_US
dc.publisher.institutionThe University of St Andrewsen_US
dc.publisher.departmentMoredun Research Instituteen_US

The following licence files are associated with this item:

  • Creative Commons

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Except where otherwise noted within the work, this item's licence for re-use is described as Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International