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Por favor, use este identificador para citar o enlazar a este item: http://hdl.handle.net/10261/123119

Preening as a vehicle for key bacteria in hoopoes

AutorMartínez García, Ángela ; Soler, Juan José ; Rodríguez-Ruano, Sonia; Martínez-Bueno, Manuel; Martín-Platero, Antonio M. ; Juárez-García, Natalia; Martín-Vivaldi, Manuel
Palabras clavePreening
Uropygial gland
Uropygial oil
Symbiotic bacteria
Fecha de publicación16-jun-2015
CitaciónMicrobial ecology
ResumenOily secretions produced in the uropygial gland of incubating female hoopoes contain antimicrobial-producing bacteria that prevent feathers from degradation and eggs from pathogenic infection. Using the beak, females collect the uropygial gland secretion and smear it directly on the eggshells and brood patch. Thus, some bacterial strains detected in the secretion should also be present on the eggshell, beak, and brood patch. To characterize these bacterial communities, we used Automatic Ribosomal Intergenic Spacer Analysis (ARISA), which distinguishes between taxonomically different bacterial strains (i.e. different operational taxonomic units [OTUs]) by the size of the sequence amplified.We identified a total of 146 different OTUs with sizes between 139 and 999 bp. Of these OTUs, 124 were detected in the uropygial oil, 106 on the beak surface, 97 on the brood patch, and 98 on the eggshell. The highest richness of OTUs appeared in the uropygial oil samples. Moreover, the detection of some OTUs on the beak, brood patch, and eggshells of particular nests depended on these OTUs being present in the uropygial oil of the female. These results agree with the hypothesis that symbiotic bacteria are transmitted from the uropygial gland to beak, brood patch, and eggshell surfaces, opening the possibility that the bacterial community of the secretion plays a central role in determining the communities of special hoopoe eggshell structures (i.e., crypts) that, soon after hatching, are filled with uropygial oil, thereby protecting embryos from pathogens.
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00248-015-0636-1
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