Four flocks from one commercial market-turkey operation in Ohio were monitored for the presence of enteric viruses. Each flock was sampled at intervals from placement until at least 7 weeks of age; sampling was more frequent in the first 4 weeks of life. The earliest infections detected were astrovirus infections or combination infections of astrovirus and rotavirus-like virus (RVLV) or astrovirus and rotavirus. During the first 4 weeks of life, astrovirus was the most frequently detected virus, followed by RVLV, then rotavirus. These viruses were seldom detected beyond 4 weeks of age. In three of the four flocks, no viruses were detected in samples collected before 6 days of age; in one flock, however, rotavirus and astrovirus were identified from samples collected at 3 days of age. Experimental infection of specific-pathogen-free poults with astrovirus and RVLV produced enteric diseases in poults and demonstrated that astrovirus was shed into the intestinal tract before RVLV. Poults experimentally infected with astrovirus and RVLV displayed clinical signs of diarrhea and upon necropsy exhibited dilated ceca, frothy gaseous intestinal contents, and loss of intestinal tone.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Food Animals
- Animal Science and Zoology
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)