During the period from 1982 to 1991, 863 captive and 32 wild capercaillies (Tetrao urogallus) were necropsied. The most common cause of death in captive capercaillies was necrotizing enteritis, diagnosed in 110 (13%) birds. Of these, 31 (28%) birds also had necrotizing lesions in the liver. Necrotizing gastritis occurred in 29 birds, two of which had concurrent necrotizing enteritis. In the capercaillies with necrotizing enteritis, Clostridium perfringens type A was isolated more frequently and in larger numbers than in birds which died from other causes. Thus, Clostridium perfringens type A may be of etiological importance in necrotizing enteritis. Necrotizing enteritis was not diagnosed in wild capercaillies.

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