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Canadians Honour Poultry Scientist with Parasite Tribute

Billy Hargis, a distinguished poultry scientist, recently received a unique tribute for his groundbreaking research in poultry gut health.

The tribute comes in the form of a newly discovered poultry pathogen named Eimeria hargisi, named in his honor by colleagues at the Ontario Veterinary College in Canada.

The discovery of Eimeria hargisi occurred during studies of a recurring disease at a commercial chukar partridge farm in Ontario. This parasite, part of the Eimeria family, is responsible for causing coccidiosis, a deadly disease affecting various animals, including poultry.

Hargis, who serves as the director of the John Kirkpatrick Skeeles Poultry Health Laboratory, expressed his gratitude for the honor bestowed upon him by his longtime colleague and friend, John Barta, a professor of parasitology at the Ontario Veterinary College.

The oval-shaped tattoo of the newly named microbe adorns the side of Hargis's right calf, serving as a permanent reminder of his contributions to the field.

The naming of Eimeria hargisi after Hargis serves as recognition of his extensive research record in support of poultry gut health and his mentorship of future scientists in the field.

This tribute marks the second time an Arkansas poultry researcher has had a parasite named after them, further solidifying Hargis's impact on the scientific community.

Hargis's contribution to poultry science extends beyond his role at the Skeeles Poultry Health Laboratory. He also teaches courses in the poultry science department at the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, furthering education and research in the field.

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