Age-Related Changes in the Hoatzin Crop Bacterial Community
Domínguez Bello, María G.
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The hoatzin (Opisthocomus hoazin)is a South American folivorous bird, with a crop microbial ecosystem that ferments dietary plant material. Juvenile birds progressively become independent from the chicks fed by adults regurgitated crop liquid contents. We hypothesized that the crop bacterial ecosystem develops in chicks soon after hatching, continuing until they acquire the mature crop community through mechanisms of microbial succession, similar to that reported in the intestine of mammals. The aim of this work was to compare the crop bacterial community structure in hoatzins from three age groups: newly hatched chicks, juveniles and adults, by performing 16S rDNA libraries and hybridizing 16S amplicons onto the G2 PhyloChip.