Skip to main content
Escherichia coli, Salmonella, and Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis in Wild European Starlings at a Kansas Cattle Feedlot
Avian Diseases
  • Shannon M. Gaukler, North Dakota State University
  • George M. Linz, United States Department of Agriculture
  • Julie S. Sherwood, North Dakota State University
  • Neil W. Dyer, North Dakota State University
  • William J. Bleier, North Dakota State University
  • Yvonne Wannemuehler, Iowa State University
  • Lisa K. Nolan, Iowa State University
  • Catherine M. Logue, North Dakota State University
Document Type
Publication Date
The prevalence of Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp., and Mycobacterium avium subsp.paratuberculosis isolated from the feces of wild European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) humanely trapped at a feedlot in central Kansas was assessed. All E. coli and Salmonellaisolates recovered were tested for antimicrobial susceptibility using National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System panels and the E. coli isolates were classified as to their content of genes associated with pathogenic E. coli of birds and cattle, including cvaC, iroN2, ompTp, hlyF2, eitC, iss, iutA, ireA, papC, stxI, stxII, sta, K99, F41, and eae.Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis were not detected and Salmonella was isolated from only three samples, two of which displayed antimicrobial resistance. Approximately half of the E. coli isolates were resistant to antimicrobial agents with 96% showing resistance to tetracycline. Only one isolate was positive for a single gene associated with bovine pathogenic E. coli. An interesting finding of this study was that 5% of the E. coli isolates tested met the criteria established for identification as avian pathogenic E. coli (APEC). Thus these findings suggest that starlings are not a significant source of Salmonella spp., Mycobacterium avium subsp.paratuberculosis, E. coli O157, or other shiga toxin–producing E. coli in this feedlot. However, they may have the potential to spread APEC, an important pathogen of poultry and a potential pathogen to human beings.

This article is from Avian Diseases 53, no. 4 (2009): 544–551, doi:10.1637/8920-050809-Reg.1.

Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.
File Format
Citation Information
Shannon M. Gaukler, George M. Linz, Julie S. Sherwood, Neil W. Dyer, et al.. "Escherichia coli, Salmonella, and Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis in Wild European Starlings at a Kansas Cattle Feedlot" Avian Diseases Vol. 53 Iss. 4 (2009) p. 544 - 551
Available at: