Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » National Animal Disease Center » Food Safety and Enteric Pathogens Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #185352


item Scupham, Alexandra
item Jones, Jennifer
item BENT, E

Submitted to: American Society for Microbiology Branch Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/22/2005
Publication Date: 9/22/2005
Citation: Scupham, A.J., Jones, J., Bent, E., Borneman, J. 2005. Intestinal bacterial communities of domestic and wild turkeys [abstract]. North Central Branch-American Society for Microbiology. p. 62.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: GOAL: To describe and compare the intestinal bacterial communities of domestic and wild turkeys. METHODS: Ceca from five domestic turkeys killed on-farm (Farm A) and eight from the abattoir (five from Farm A, three from Farm B) were examined for bacterial composition. Ceca from wild birds were procured during the 2004 spring gunhunt season from Iowa (4 birds), Missouri (5 birds), and Wisconsin (4 birds). Bacterial small-subunit (SSU) ribosomal genes were PCR amplified and cloned (2990 total clones). Clones were discriminated using Oligonucleotide Fingerprinting of rRNA Genes (OFRG). Algorithms for fingerprint assignment, data analysis and dendrogram construction can be found at: Library comparisons were performed using LIBSHUFF RESULTS: Bacterial library composition was determined to include Bacteroidetes (47% domestic, 54% wild), 27% were Clostridiales (27% domestic, 29% wild), Proteobacteria (7% domestic, 7% wild), Lactobacillales (3% domestic, 4% wild), and assorted others (16% domestic, 7% wild). LIBSHUFF comparisons indicate significant community differences between on-farm birds at Farm A and birds from Farm A that were transported and killed at the abattoir. In addition, total gut communities from Farm A were significantly different from those from Farm B. Individual Farm A, pre-transport birds contained non-significant subsets of one another’s flora. LIBSHUFF comparisons of wild individuals and birds from different locations failed to yield a significant difference. CONCLUSIONS: Wild and domestic turkeys host differing bacterial communities in their intestines. The significant difference in microbial communities between animals on different farms, but not between individual wild birds, supports the hypothesis that initial exposure of young animals to certain bacterial groups determines the ultimate community structure.