Publications

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immunology. infection protection and natural selection. 201021030640
congenital cerebral and cerebellar lesions of unknown aetiology in calves. 201020710029
trading offspring size for number in a variable environment: selection on reproductive investment in female soay sheep.1. given energetic constraints, female reproductive strategy is expected to be shaped by a trade-off between offspring size and offspring number, the optimal resolution of which may vary with environmental conditions. 2. we tested the hypothesis that selection will favour the production of larger litters, even at some expense to offspring size, under good conditions (and vice versa in harsh environments) using data from a long-term study of an unmanaged population of soay sheep on the islands of ...200919302125
increase in nematodirosis outbreaks among scottish sheep flocks. 201020833998
geographic variation in tissue accumulation of endocrine disrupting compounds (edcs) in grazing sheep.muscle tissue was collected from ewes and lambs derived from farms throughout scotland and sample concentrations of five endocrine disrupting compound groups were determined. farms of origin were categorised according to geographic region. there were few statistically-significant differences with region or distance from cities. however, the magnitude of the difference between the highest and lowest mean values in ewe muscle from different regions exceeded 30% for 13 of the 15 compounds that were ...201021074917
assessing the consequences of an incursion of a vector-borne disease i. identifying feasible incursion scenarios for bluetongue in scotland.following the arrival of bluetongue virus serotype 8 (btv-8) in southeast england in september 2007, the scottish government commissioned research to assess the economic consequences of a btv-8 incursion to scotland. here we present the first component of the assessment, which entailed identifying feasible incursion scenarios for the virus. our analyses focused on three routes of introduction: wind-borne dispersal of infected vectors, import of infected animals and northwards spread of btv from ...201021352785
[about the shieling: summer grazing in the british isles in the 17th and 18th centuries]. 199921213932
assessing the consequences of an incursion of a vector-borne disease. ii. spread of bluetongue in scotland and impact of vaccination.bluetongue is a viral disease of ruminants transmitted by culicoides biting midges, which has spread across europe over the past decade. the disease arrived in south-east england in 2007, raising the possibility that it could pose a risk to the valuable scottish livestock industry. as part of an assessment of the economic consequences of a bluetongue virus incursion into scotland commissioned by scottish government, we investigated a defined set of feasible incursion scenarios under different va ...201021352784
prevalence of escherichia coli o157: h7 and serogroups o26, o103, o111 and o145 in sheep presented for slaughter in scotland.sheep have been proposed as a source of human verocytotoxigenic escherichia coli infection on a number of occasions but few prevalence studies have focused on identifying rates of carriage of these pathogens in this species. the purpose of this work was to establish the frequency of excretion of e. coli of serogroups o157, o26, o103, o111 and o145 in sheep presented for slaughter in scotland and to examine their carriage of known virulence determinants. the study involved microbiological isolati ...201121233295
diagnosis and economic consequences of triclabendazole resistance in fasciola hepatica in a sheep flock in south-east scotland.over the past decade, definite changes have been recorded in the regional prevalence, seasonality and severity of fasciolosis in the uk, related to increased rainfall, or localised flooding, prompting debate about the deleterious effects of climate change. as a consequence, effective management of fasciolosis has become problematic in areas where fluke traditionally exists, leading to serious loss of production in sheep and cattle. meanwhile, in eastern districts, there have been unexpected outb ...201121493511
evaluation of risks of foot-and-mouth disease in scotland to assist with decision making during the 2007 outbreak in the uk.an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (fmd) occurred in surrey on august 3, 2007. a great britain-wide ban on livestock movements was implemented immediately. this coincided with the start of seasonal sheep movements off the hills in scotland; the majority of these animals are sold via markets. the ban therefore posed severe economic and animal-welfare hardships if it was to last through september and beyond. the scottish government commissioned an analysis to assess the risk of re-opening marke ...201121730033
trypanosoma melophagium from the sheep ked melophagus ovinus on the island of st kilda.summarythe sheep ked has been largely eradicated in the uk but persists in the feral soay sheep of st kilda in the outer hebrides. sheep keds transmit trypanosoma melophagium, but parasitaemias are typically cryptic and this trypanosome has not been recorded in the st kilda sheep. trypanosomes were detected by pcr in preserved keds and were also found in gut smears from live keds; one infected gut was used to establish the trypanosome in vitro. examination of the morphology of bloodstream forms ...201020546642
potential for epidemic take-off from the primary outbreak farm via livestock movements.abstract:201122115121
severe winter weather affects the health of scottish livestock. 201121682006
spatiotemporal homogeneity of campylobacter subtypes from cattle and sheep across northeastern and southwestern scotland.source attribution using molecular subtypes has implicated cattle and sheep as sources of human campylobacter infection. whether the campylobacter subtypes associated with cattle and sheep vary spatiotemporally remains poorly known, especially at national levels. here we describe spatiotemporal patterns of prevalence, bacterial enumeration, and subtype composition in campylobacter isolates from cattle and sheep feces from northeastern (63 farms, 414 samples) and southwestern (71 farms, 449 sampl ...200919700557
genome-wide association mapping identifies the genetic basis of discrete and quantitative variation in sexual weaponry in a wild sheep population.understanding the genetic architecture of phenotypic variation in natural populations is a fundamental goal of evolutionary genetics. wild soay sheep (ovis aries) have an inherited polymorphism for horn morphology in both sexes, controlled by a single autosomal locus, horns. the majority of males have large normal horns, but a small number have vestigial, deformed horns, known as scurs; females have either normal horns, scurs or no horns (polled). given that scurred males and polled females have ...201121651634
the efficacy of monepantel against naturally acquired inhibited and developing fourth-stage larvae of teladorsagia circumcincta in sheep in the united kingdom.the inhibition of teladorsagia and other nematode genera at the early fourth-stage is a biological process that allows the parasites to survive in their host in a dormant state when prevailing conditions may otherwise kill them or prevent their progeny from surviving in the external environment. a study was conducted in scotland to evaluate the efficacy of monepantel, an amino-acetonitrile derivative, against natural infections of inhibited fourth-stage teladorsagia spp. larvae. at necropsy it w ...201122177334
severe ostertagiasis in a group of scottish dairy heifers. 201122167842
Risk assessment of the use of PAS100 green composts in sheep and cattle production in Scotland.A generalized quantitative risk assessment for the use of source-segregated green waste (SSGW) compost use in livestock production is presented. This assessment focussed on potential risks associated with a specific product, PAS100 compost that meets the UK publicly available specification 100 and represents the majority of compost available for use in extensive Scottish livestock systems. A hazard screening approach was used to identify all potentially hazardous agents present in compost. A tot ...201221924890
risk of carcase contamination with campylobacter in sheep sent for slaughter into an abattoir in scotland.campylobacter species have been identified as the major cause of acute bacterial enteritis in the uk. however, the epidemiology of campylobacteriosis remains poorly understood. it has been suggested that the role of sheep in the epidemiology of campylobacter has been underestimated. the objective of the present study was to assess the infection risk of campylobacter in sheep meat as a potential risk for human campylobacteriosis and to establish any possible associations between the epidemiologic ...201020381181
observations on the epidemiology of autumn nematodirosis in weaned lambs in a scottish sheep flock.nematodirosis was diagnosed in the south-east of scotland during two consecutive autumns in lambs which were grazed on the same field. the problem was unpredicted based on the knowledge of the pasture and animal management, and rudimentary understanding of the behaviour of free-living stages of nematodirus battus in the region. unlike the epidemiology that has been described in the south of england, whereby autumn infection of lambs is believed to arise from autumn hatching of eggs shed during t ...201222266686
scotland obtains some leeway on eid for sheep. 201121873391
Testes size, testosterone production and reproductive behaviour in a natural mammalian mating system.1. Testosterone (T) is a key mediator in the expression of numerous morphological and behavioural traits in mammals, but the factors underlying individual variation in circulating T levels are poorly understood. 2. The intimate structural integration of sperm and T production within the testes, alongside the dependency of sperm production on high levels of T, suggests that T requirements for spermatogenesis could be an important driver of individual differences in T. 3. To test this hypothesis, ...201221958300
exposure to viral and bacterial pathogens among soay sheep (ovis aries) of the st kilda archipelago.we assessed evidence of exposure to viruses and bacteria in an unmanaged and long-isolated population of soay sheep (ovis aries) inhabiting hirta, in the st kilda archipelago, 65 km west of benbecula in the outer hebrides of scotland. the sheep harbour many metazoan and protozoan parasites but their exposure to viral and bacterial pathogens is unknown. we tested for herpes viral dna in leucocytes and found that 21 of 42 tested sheep were infected with ovine herpesvirus 2 (ohv-2). we also tested ...201626829883
evidence of chlamydophila abortus vaccine strain 1b as a possible cause of ovine enzootic abortion.chlamydophila abortus, the agent of ovine enzootic abortion (oea), is a major cause of lamb mortality worldwide. disease can be controlled through the use of vaccines based on the 1b temperature-sensitive mutant strain of c. abortus. this study investigated suspected oea cases across scotland for the presence of the 1b strain by analysis of recently identified unique point mutations (9). thirty-five cases were c. abortus-positive and 14 came from vaccinated flocks. analysis of single nucleotide ...201020554095
veterinary salmonella isolates in scotland decline again in 2009. 201121634058
Index selection in terminal sires improves early lamb growth.The use of terminal sires (TS) for crossbreeding is integral to the UK sheep industry where approximately 71% of market lambs are sired by TS rams. Early growth of these crossbred lambs affects profitability. The objectives of this study were: (i) to evaluate the effectiveness of index selection among TS on the BW and ADG of their crossbred offspring; and, (ii) to compare the efficacy of that selection within TS breeds. The most widely used TS breeds in the UK are Charollais, Suffolk and Texel. ...201122021813
disease due to salmonella diagnosed in cattle and pigs in scotland.salmonellosis in cattle due to s dublin and s typhimurium, and in pigs due to s typhimurium. blue-green algae (cyanobacterium) toxicity suspected on a dairy farm. outbreaks of parasitic pneumonia diagnosed in grazing cattle across scotland. parasitic gastroenteritis in lambs seen in association with deficiencies of trace elements. viral insult suspected in outdoor sows affected by hindlimb paresis and paralysis. these are among matters discussed in the disease surveillance report for august from ...201021257506
increase in the prevalence of johne's disease in sheep in scotland.increased prevalence of johne's disease in sheep; abomasal damage in young cattle due to ostertagiosis; parasitic gastroenteritis in young sheep due to nematodirus, teladorsagia and chabertia species; streptococcus suis serotype 2 associated with a range of clinical signs in pigs; respiratory cryptosporidiosis confirmed in wild red grouse. these are among matters discussed in the disease surveillance report for october 2010 from sac consulting: veterinary services (sac c vs).201121257530
european field study of the efficacy and safety of the novel anthelmintic monepantel in sheep.during 2007, a large-scale controlled, multicentre, blinded and randomised field study was conducted in scotland, england and france to assess the efficacy and safety of monepantel, the first molecule to be developed from the recently discovered amino-acetonitrile derivatives class of anthelmintics, in sheep. monepantel was administered orally, at a minimum dose of 2.5 mg/kg bodyweight, for the control of gastrointestinal nematodes in sheep maintained at pasture in a range of commercial producti ...201021257441
trends in bovine viral diarrhoea in scottish cattle.review of bovine viral diarrhoea virus-related disease, 1996 to 2009. diverse range of respiratory diseases diagnosed in cattle. caseous lymphadenitis confirmed in a suffolk ram lamb aged only four months. extramedullary haematopoiesis of unknown cause in a pig. coccidiosis diagnosed frequently in pheasants and partridges. these are among matters discussed in the disease surveillance report for july from sac consulting: veterinary services (sac c vs).201021257395
birds bias offspring sex ratio in response to livestock grazing.livestock grazing, which has a large influence on habitat structure, is associated with the widespread decline of various bird species across the world, yet there are few experimental studies that investigate how grazing pressure influences avian reproduction. we manipulated grazing pressure using a replicated field experiment, and found that the offspring sex ratio of a common upland passerine, the meadow pipit anthus pratensis, varied significantly between grazing treatments. the proportion of ...201121561962
review of mastitis diagnoses in scottish cattle in 2010. 201121638801
twice as many outbreaks of lungworm disease in scottish cattle as in 2009.parasitic bronchitis in cattle; sudden deaths due to hypomagnesaemia in adult cattle; louping ill confirmed in adult cattle and young sheep; copper poisoning in lleyn ewes associated with access to clover herbage with high copper and low molybdenum; polyarthritis due to mycoplasma hyorhinis in growing pigs. these are among matters discussed in the disease surveillance report for september from sac consulting: veterinary services (sac c vs).201021262671
genetic diversity of cryptosporidium spp. within a remote population of soay sheep on st. kilda islands, scotland.this is the first report to characterize the genotypes and subtypes of cryptosporidium species infecting a geographically isolated population of feral soay sheep (ovis aries) on hirta, st. kilda, scotland, during two distinct periods: (i) prior to a population crash and (ii) as host numbers increased. cryptosporidium dna was extracted by freeze-thawing of immunomagnetically separated (ims) bead-oocyst complexes, and species were identified following nested-pcr-restriction fragment length polymor ...201323354707
sheep scab reinstated as a notifiable disease in scotland. 201021262722
physiological proteins in resource-limited herbivores experiencing a population die-off.nutrient availability is predicted to interact with herbivore population densities. competition for low quality food at high density may reduce summer food intake, and in turn winter survival. conversely, low population density may favor physiological recovery through better access to better quality spring forage. here, we take advantage of the long-term study of the soay sheep population of st. kilda (scotland) to measure plasma protein markers and immunity in two consecutive summers with contr ...201728761976
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