Biogeographical patterns and co-occurrence of pathogenic infection across island populations of Berthelot’s pipit (Anthus berthelotii)

Spurgin, Lewis G., Illera, Juan Carlos, Padilla, David P. and Richardson, David S. (2012) Biogeographical patterns and co-occurrence of pathogenic infection across island populations of Berthelot’s pipit (Anthus berthelotii). Oecologia, 168 (3). pp. 691-701. ISSN 0029-8549

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Abstract

Pathogens can exert strong selective forces upon host populations. However, before we can make any predictions about the consequences of pathogen-mediated selection, we ?rst need to determine whether patterns of pathogen distribution are consistent over spatiotemporal scales. We used molecular techniques to screen for a variety of blood pathogens (avian malaria, pox and trypanosomes) over a three-year time period across 13 island populations of the Berthelot’s pipit (Anthus berthelotii). This species has only recently dispersed across its range in the North Atlantic, with little subsequent migration, providing an ideal opportunity to examine the causes and effects of pathogenic infection in populations in the early stages of differentiation. We screened 832 individuals, and identi?ed two strains of Plasmodium, four strains of Leucocytozoon, and one pox strain. We found strong differences in pathogen prevalence across populations, ranging from 0 to 65%, and while some ?uctuations in prevalence occurred, these differences were largely stable over the time period studied. Smaller, more isolated islands harboured fewer pathogen strains than larger, less isolated islands, indicating that at the population level, colonization and extinction play an important role in determining pathogen distribution. Individual-level analyses con?rmed the island effect, and also revealed a positive association between Plasmodium and pox infection, which could have arisen due to dual transmission of the pathogens by the same vectors, or because one pathogen lowers resistance to the other. Our ?ndings, combined with an effect of infection on host body condition, suggest that Berthelot’s pipits are subject to different levels of pathogen-mediated selection both across and within populations, and that these selective pressures are consistent over time.

Item Type: Article
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Biological Sciences
Depositing User: Users 2731 not found.
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2012 13:51
Last Modified: 14 May 2020 23:47
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/36646
DOI: 10.1007/s00442-011-2149-z

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