SUMMARY

A free-ranging, adult male ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) was harvested by a hunter during November 2019 in Forest County, PA. The bird was submitted for necropsy due to a skin mass on its left leg. Upon necropsy, two proliferative skin masses were grossly visible, one on the left leg and one on the cere. An additional mass was present on the oropharyngeal mucosa covering the hard palate. These masses were diagnosed as avian pox based on histopathologic and cytologic findings, including marked epithelial hypertrophy, hyperplasia, vacuolar degeneration with eosinophilic stippling, and intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies. An avipoxvirus was detected using PCR and was identified as fowlpox virus through sequencing of the 4b core gene segment. The avipoxvirus from this case showed genetic similarity to isolates from Eastern wild turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo silvestris).

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