December 19, 2012

12 Days of WHER and the Wildlife Disease Journal Digest

Twelve Days of the Wildlife Health Event Reporter
 Day 7: Naughty or Nice? WHER Definitely made it on to Santa’s ‘Nice List’! 

Santa working on his naughty and nice list. 
What can we say - Santa loves the Wildlife Health Event Reporter (WHER),, because it plays so well with others and is always sharing its data.

The WHER team understands that many organizations already have an established system they use to collect and manage wildlife health information. WHER was not developed to replace or disrupt how wildlife health organizations/agencies are collecting wildlife health information. Its purpose, in addition to creating a place where the public can easily report their sightings of injured, sick, or dead wild animals, was to become a means by which organizations who are concerned about wildlife disease could get information and also contribute their own wildlife health information for others to view and use.

A recent study uncovered the problem of segregated disease surveillance data as it relates to monitoring for emerging infectious diseases, with or without a wildlife component.
The "siloed" structure of U.S. health agencies is hindering efforts to spot and combat animal-to-human afflictions, such as West Nile Virus, New York University sociologist Colin Jerolmack has concluded after conducting an organizational analysis of their operations.
Working as a hub for information exchange, WHER can help researchers and wildlife biologists connect and join isolated ‘silos’ of wildlife health information to improve wildlife disease surveillance efforts. Also in support of the One Health Initiative, this unified view of wildlife health can also be joined with human and domestic animal health information.

What Makes WHER Such a Nice and Easy System to Collaborate with?

Figure 2: Shows WHER's data inputs and outputs
The Wildlife Health Event Reporter works as an instrument of collaboration because it:
  • Shares all the wildlife health information that people enter into the system and makes it available to everyone to use and view in a variety of different formats (e.g. map, table, and downloadable spreadsheet).

  • Makes its data available in XML, a standardized format. As a stream of data, others can easily grab WHER data and mash it with data from their own systems.

  • Pulls in datasets from other sources who make their information available, such as the Children’s Hospital Boston’s HealthMap, and the Seabird Ecological Assessment Network (SEANET). [See Figure 2].  Both are an example of how external organizations can share and automate the delivery of their wildlife health data to WHER to be joined with WHER data for a more comprehensive view of where wildlife disease is occurring. 

  • Collects minimal, but essential data elements for wildlife health surveillance, which means most organizations, if they wish, will have this information to share with WHER.

Do You Have an Available Dataset or Data Stream of Wildlife Health Information?

The WHER team is always looking for wildlife health information that we can add to the Wildlife Health Event Reporter. The more wildlife health surveillance data the system contains only increases the value of WHER and its ability to be used to forecast and predict future disease events. If you have data to share, older or current, we would love to hear from you! Email us at

Santa was impressed with how well WHER shares with others. Hopefully you are too!


Browse complete Digest publication library here.

Distribution and Environmental Persistence of the Causative Agent of White-Nose Syndrome, Geomyces destructans, in Bat Hibernacula of the Eastern United States
Appl Environ Microbiol. 2012 Dec 14. [Epub ahead of print]
JM Lorch et al.

Disease emergence and invasions
Functional Ecology. 2012 Dec; 26(6): 1275–1287
MJ Hatcher et al.

Facts and dilemmas in diagnosis of tuberculosis in wildlife
Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis. 2012 Dec 5. pii: S0147-9571(12)00124-5. doi: 10.1016/j.cimid.2012.10.010. [Epub ahead of print]
M Maas et al.

First detection of Chlamydia psittaci from a wild native passerine bird in New Zealand

N Z Vet J. 2012 Dec 11. [Epub ahead of print]
B Gartrell et al.

Tawny frogmouths and brushtail possums as sentinels for Angiostrongylus cantonensis, the rat lungworm
Vet Parasitol. 2012 Nov 12. pii: S0304-4017(12)00592-4. doi: 10.1016/j.vetpar.2012.11.009. [Epub ahead of print]
G Ma et al.

Diseases at the livestock–wildlife interface: Status, challenges, and opportunities in the United States
Preventive Veterinary Medicine. 2012; [Epub ahead of print]. doi:10.1016/j.prevetmed.2012.11.021
RS Miller et al.

Otitis Media Associated with Cryptosporidium baileyi in a Saker Falcon (Falco cherrug)
Journal of Comparative Pathology. 2012; [Epub ahead of print]. DOI: 10.1016/j.jcpa.2012.09.005
PA Bougiouklis et al.

Wildlife Health in Australia - November 2012 [pdf]
Volume 10, Issue 2

Emerging Infectious Diseases - December 2012
Volume 18, Number 12

The Wildlifer - December 2012
Issue 393

Special Series: Zoonoses
The Lancet. 2012 Dec 01; 380(9857)

Host–parasite interactions in a fragmented landscape
International Journal of Parasitology. 2012; [Epub ahead of print]
AR Renwick and X Lambin et al.

Diseases of Aquatic Organisms - December 2012 
Volume 102, Number 1

Animal Health Surveillance Quarterly Report - December 2012
Volume 17, Issue 3
Replication of 2 Subtypes of Low-Pathogenicity Avian Influenza Virus of Duck and Gull Origins in Experimentally Infected Mallard Ducks
Vet Pathol. 2012 Dec 14. [Epub ahead of print]
PY Daoust et al.

Herpes virus infection associated with interstitial nephritis in a beaked whale (Mesoplodon densirostris)
BMC Veterinary Research. 2012; 8:243 doi:10.1186/1746-6148-8-243
M Arbelo et al.

Patterns of Stranding and Mortality in Common Seals (Phoca vitulina) and Grey Seals (Halichoerus grypus) in The Netherlands between 1979 and 2008
Journal of Comparative Pathology. 2012; 147(4): 550–565
N Osinga et al.

Impact of external sources of infection on the dynamics of bovine tuberculosis in modelled badger populations
BMC Vet Res. 2012 Jun 27;8:92. doi: 10.1186/1746-6148-8-92.
JL Hardstaff et al.

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