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Ecology of rabies virus exposure in colonies of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) at natural and man-made roosts in Texas
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases (2010)
  • Amy S. Turmelle
  • Louise C. Allen
  • B. A. Schmidt-French
  • Felix R. Jackson
  • Thomas H. Kunz
  • Gary F. McCracken, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Charles E. Rupprecht
Abstract

Previous studies have investigated rabies virus (RABV) epizootiology in Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) in natural cave roosts. However, little is known about geographic variation in RABV exposure, or if the use of man-made roosts by this species affects enzootic RABV infection dynamics within colonies. We sampled rabies viral neutralizing antibodies in bats at three bridge and three cave roosts at multiple time points during the reproductive season to investigate temporal and roost variation in RABV exposure. We report seropositive bats in all age and sex classes with minimal geographic variation in RABV seroprevalence among Brazilian free-tailed bat colonies in south-central Texas. While roost type was not a significant predictor of RABV seroprevalence, it was significantly associated with seasonal fluctuations, suggesting patterns of exposure that differ between roosts. Temporal patterns suggest increased RABV seroprevalence after parturition in cave colonies, potentially related to an influx of susceptible young, in contrast to more uniform seroprevalence in bridge colonies. This study highlights the importance of life history and roost ecology in understanding patterns of RABV seroprevalence in colonies of the Brazilian free-tailed bat.

doi:10.1089/vbz.2008.0163

Publication Date
March, 2010
Citation Information
Amy S. Turmelle, Louise C. Allen, B. A. Schmidt-French, Felix R. Jackson, et al.. "Ecology of rabies virus exposure in colonies of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) at natural and man-made roosts in Texas" Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases Vol. 10 Iss. 2 (2010)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/gary_mccracken/16/