Cutaneous pythiosis in a nestling white-faced ibis

Patricia Pesavento, B. Barr, S. M. Riggs, A. L. Eigenheer, R. Pamma, R. L. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


A nestling white-faced ibis (Plegadis chihi) with multifocal skin ulcerations on the wings, neck, head, and limbs was found in a wetland agricultural region of the central valley in California. Pathologic, microbiologic, and molecular findings were consistent with restricted, cutaneous infection by the oomycete Pythium insidiosum. The microscopic features of the disease, including intense, necrotizing eosinophilic and granulomatous inflammation, are similar to those previously described in mammals. Pythiosis, which is most typical in tropical and subtropical climates, has recently emerged in California as a cause of cutaneous and enteric disease in horses and dogs, respectively. Environmental stability and persistence of a "water- mold" in the arid central valley of California could be associated with agricultural and community watering practices. To the best of the authors' knowledge, this is the first published report of pythiosis in birds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)538-541
Number of pages4
JournalVeterinary Pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2008


  • Avian
  • Dermatitis
  • Oomycete
  • Pythium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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