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Gulls affected by bacteria in more populated areas


Cara J

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While Alaskan gulls are often infected with the common bacteria E. coli, it appears that some strains found in the birds have developed a resistance to antibiotics. And we might have something to do with it. As part of a study published in Infection Ecology and Epidemiology, scientists examined whether antibiotic resistant strains of E. Coli that were discovered in the last few years were more prevalent in populated areas of southcentral Alaska. “Essentially, we were looking to see if human inputs into the environment might be contributing to the presence of antibiotic resistant E. coli and what that relationship might look like,” said Andy Ramey, a research scientist with the U.S. Geological Survey and the second author in the study. In past studies, Ramey’s coauthors found antibiotic resistant E. coli in gulls in Barrow, Alaska which is a large community with thousands of people. In this study, the researchers looked at the bacteria in gulls in a more populated area of southcentral Alaska — a popular tourist destination as well as home to a large number of hunters and anglers. As part of the research, the team collected feces of glaucous winged gulls (Larus glaucescens), herring gulls (Larus argentatus) [...]

 

Read more: http://wildlife.org/gulls-affected-by-bacteria-in-more-populated-areas/

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