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Bobwhite Quail Research In The News

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Our post-doctoral research investigator, Aravindan, is looking through a digital microscope to find and view live embryonated eyeworm (Oxyspirura petrowi) eggs. This picture only shows one component of our research in the Wildlife Toxicology Laboratory from our extensive investigation into parasitic infection in wild Northern bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus) in the Rolling Plains Ecoregion of West Texas. Our field team first samples wild bobwhite quail and then brings these samples to the laboratory. At the lab, our laboratory members collect embryonated eggs from gravid female eyeworms for further research!

The WTL thoroughly investigates the eyeworm’s life cycle so we can understand how these parasites are affecting bobwhite quail, particularly for an eye pathological and/or immune response. Check out our growing research at our webpage wildlifetoxicologylab.org/ and keep up-to-date on our progress by following our Facebook www.facebook.com/WTLbobwhite/ and Instagram pages www.instagram.com/wtlbobwhite/!
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During this hot summer week, the Wildlife Toxicology Laboratory went surveying for grasshoppers in the Rolling Plains of West Texas! We caught species such as Brachystola magna (upper left), Hesperotettix viridis (upper right), Melanoplus differentialis (lower left), and Ageneotettix deorum (lower right). We collect grasshoppers so we can test them for the presence of caecal worm (Aulonocephalus pennula) and eyeworm (Oxyspirura petrowi) parasites. If a wild Northern bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus) snacks on an infected grasshopper, the parasite can be passed into the bobwhite quail where the larvae may develop into a mature, reproducing adult.

Our team at the WTL is further investigating the caecal worm and eyeworm parasitic life cycles so we better understand their complex relationships with the bobwhite quail and other environmental factors in Rolling Plains of West Texas. So stay updated with our evolving research at our website wildlifetoxicologylab.org!

Which grasshoppers do you think contain eyeworm larvae, caecal worm larvae, both or no larvae at all? Answers will be provided in the comment section after 24 hours! #westtexas #rollingplains #grasshopper #insects #insect #wtlbobwhite #research #fieldwork
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