Esophagi were removed from northern bobwhite (Colinus virginianus) that were killed by hunters during the 1996-1997 (n = 39) and 1997-1998 (n = 27) hunting seasons in Wheeler County, Texas and Roger Mills County, Oklahoma to determine if they were exposed to aflatoxin (AF) by consuming either wild or supplemental food. Esophagi were segregated into three categories based upon their contents: all wild seeds (n = 11), all supplemental foods (n = 21), and mixed foods (n = 18). Contents of esophagi were then analyzed for AF concentration. Mean (± SE) AF concentration (ppb) of wild seeds was 2.44 ± 0.54; supplemental foods, 0.12 ± 0.41; and mixed foods, 0.53 ± 0.40. Wild seeds had higher (P = 0.004) AF concentrations than either the supplemental or mixed categories, although these levels are below those found to cause damage to northern bobwhite. This information suggests that northern bobwhite may consume contaminated food much more often than previously thought.
- Aflatoxin contamination
- Northern bobwhite (Colinus virginianus)
- Wild seeds