Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Red-Tailed Hawk

Red-Tailed Hawk

Buteo jamaicensis

Photo: A juvenile red-tailed hawk prepares to land
The most common hawk in North America, red-tails can often be seen atop utility poles and other lofty perches, on the lookout for potential prey.
Photograph by Rich Reid

Monday, September 24, 2012

Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD)

Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD)



  • Etiology

Foot-and-mouth disease virus, an aphthovirus

  • Epidemiology

Affects  ruminants  and pigs.  Highly contagious, usually  low mortality  but  great economic impact worldwide

  • Pathogenesis

Inha lation/ingestion----> oropharyngeal  infection----> viremia----> epidermal  cells-----> signs  and  lesions enhanced by mechanical  trauma

  • Clinical signs

Fever,  profuse  salivation, vesicles in mouth  and feet, sudden  death
in young animals

  • Clinical pathology/diagnostic confirmation

Virus  isolation,  serology and  RT-PCR detection. Typing confirmed  in a  reference  laboratory

  • Lesions

Vesicular, erosive/ulcerative stomatitis and esophagitis, vesicular/ulcerative dermatitis (feet and teats) and in neonates, interstitial mononuclear and necrotic myocarditis

  • Differential  diagnostic list 

  1. Vesicular stomatitis 
  2. Vesicular exanthema 
  3. Swine vesicular disease 
  4. Rinderpest 
  5. Bovine viral  diarrhea 

  • Treatment.

None except symptomatically. 

  • Control

Mass vaccination with  killed vaccines  in  endemic areas, eradication by slaughter when  feasible, and strict quarantine during outbreaks

Read full in book:

A textbook of the diseases of cattle, horses, sheep, pigs and goats 
O. M.  Radostits 
K. W.  Hinchcliff 
P. D. Constable 

With  contributions by
S. H.  Done 
D.  E.  Jacobs 
B.  O.  Ikede 
R.  A.  McKenzie 
D.  Colwell 
G. Osweiler 
R.  J.  Bildfell 
Page # 1223

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Greater Flamingo

Greater Flamingo

Phoenicopterus ruber

Photo: Greater flamingos
Plastic versions notwithstanding, the vibrant pink greater flamingo is found throughout the world in warm, waterside regions.
Photograph by Michael Nichols

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Red-Footed Booby

Red-Footed Booby

Sula sula

Photo: A red-footed booby on a tree branch
Smallest of the boobies, the red-foot feeds at sea, nests on the ground, and perches in coastal trees.
Photograph by Tim Laman

Friday, September 14, 2012

Great Egret

Great Egret

Ardea alba

Photo: An adult great egret with its young
Both great white egret parents raise their young, although sibling rivalry in the nest can results in death for some chicks.
Photograph by Tim Laman

Monday, September 10, 2012

Atlantic Puffin

Atlantic Puffin

Fratercula arctica

Photo: Atlantic puffin
Atlantic puffins spend most of their lives at sea, but return to land to form breeding colonies during spring and summer.
Photograph by Roy Toft

Sunday, September 9, 2012



Corvus corax (Northern Raven)

Photo: A male raven preens in the warm spring sunshine
Object of myth and poetry, the common raven is an intelligent bird of prey.
Photograph by Michael S. Quinton

Friday, September 7, 2012

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Ardea herodias

Photo: Great blue heron wading on long, thin legs
Wading on its long, thin legs, a great blue heron scouts for prey.
Photograph courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Thursday, September 6, 2012

How to distinguish good meats from bad meats

Healthy meat consumption 101 - How to distinguish good meats from bad meats

(NaturalNews) Vegetarians who personally avoid eating meat for health reasons will sometimes suggest to their friends that, in general, eating meat is harmful to health. But the all-encompassing term "meat" is a misnomer, as there are many different kinds of meat that a person can eat -- conventional, feedlot-based meats; organic, grass-fed meats; and everything in between -- and some meats are actually healthy, while others are not.

Most of the meat sold in the meat section at your local grocery store, whether it is beef, chicken, pork, or fish, comes from animals that have been raised in an industrial environment, and fed artificial foodstuffs that would not otherwise have been a part of their natural diet. Conventional beef, for instance, typically comes from cows raised in confinement, that have no access to pasture, and that are fed an unhealthy diet comprised of genetically-modified (GM) corn and soy byproducts during the final stages of their lives.

Throughout their lives, these same conventional cows are often pumped up with artificial growth hormones, including antibiotics that help them develop faster and preliminarily avoid the diseases they would otherwise not develop if they were raised in an unconfined environment. Because their living environments are routinely infested with feces and filth, conventional cows are much more susceptible to disease than, say, pasture-raised cows.

Unnatural diets destroy animal health, quality of meat

Cows are ruminant animals, which means they are meant to eat grass, not corn and soy. When cows eat the latter, their digestive systems largely reject it, making them more prone to developing chronic illness. The term "feedlot bloat" refers to the digestive disordercharacterized by the unnatural development of foam in the rumen -- the rumen is the first compartment of a cow's stomach -- that is a result of eating unnatural feed.

Corn and soy byproducts, in other words, so disrupt cows' digestive systems that the poor animals develop a severe inability to breathe, and sometimes even die. High-grain diets are disastrous for ruminant animals like cows, and yet it has become common practice in today's industrial food system to feed cows high amounts of grains in the last few months prior to their slaughter.

The situation is much the same for chickens and pigs, which are typically held and confinement and fed an unnatural diet that changes the composition of their meat. Even fish meat, much of which is now "farm-raised," comes from fish that are not allowed to feed and develop naturally, which results in a significant compositional change in the quality of their meat.

Choose meat from wild, grass-fed, pasture-raised, organic, unconfined, non-grain-fed animals

The end result of such atrocious animal husbandry practices is that the final meat product is filled with antibiotics, hormones, and various other toxins, as well as imbalanced fat profiles that promote chronic illness and obesity. Industrial meat, in other words, is a serious threat to human health, and humanity would do well to take a more proactive approach in avoiding conventional meats for their own well-being.

So what about things like grass-fed beef? Or pasture-raised chicken and eggs? Or wild salmon? These healthy meats often get lumped in with the unhealthy meats into a single category known as "meat," which is both confusing and inaccurate. It turns out that animals raised in their natural environments, whether that be pasture for cows and chickens or streams and oceans for fish, produce meat that is rich in essential nutrients, healthy fats, amino acids, and high quality proteins.

A simple rule of thumb is to avoid meat from animals that were fed GMO feed, and that were raised in confinement, and instead choose grass-fed, pasture-raised meat from organically-tended animals.

To learn more about the benefits of grass-fed, pasture-raised meats, visit:

Sources for this article include:

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Saturday, September 1, 2012

Arctic Skua

Arctic Skua

Stercorarius parasiticus

Photo: An arctic skua
Arctic skuas, also called parasitic jaegers, have a well-earned reputation as avian pirates, stealing much of their food from other birds.
Photograph by Paul Nicklen

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