December 11, 2012

Today's Wildlife Disease News Stories


Twelve Days of the Wildlife Health Event Reporter
Day One: Unwrapping the Wildlife Health Event Reporter

The holiday season is upon us and it is a time of giving! Keeping with the holiday spirit from now until January 1st, the WDIN staff will be delivering twelve little gems of knowledge about the Wildlife Health Event Reporter (WHER), and how it gives to you! OK, you may have been expecting the new iPad Mini or the new Roomba, but it is better than a lump of coal.

We agree, it may be an odd time to talk about WHER since it is an online system for reporting observations of injured, sick or dead wild animals -sort of a sad topic - but WDIN and other members of the wildlife health community believe that wildlife disease surveillance is key to effective response and long-term understanding. Disease surveillance plays a vital role in the One Health Initiative which is a collaborative effort across multiple disciplines — working locally, nationally, and globally — to attain optimal health for people, animals and the environment [1].

By using WHER to share what you see, as a community we can create broader understanding together. Your sightings in your community are joined with observations made by others at the local, national and global level to draw a more complete picture of where wildlife events are occurring in near-real time.

Join the effort to spot possible health threats and improve response and understanding. Create an account today! The next time you see that dead squirrel on your hike or that sickly looking bird at your backyard bird feeder, you will be ready to share it!

Make your own gift to the wildlife health community this season by sharing your observations!

Bird flu ruled out as cause of death of kites, cranes in Amreli

Bird flu has been ruled out as the cause of death of three kites and 27 demoiselle cranes at Victor dam in Amreli’s Rajula taluka last weekend even as two more kites and a crane were found dead in the area on Wednesday.

“The preliminary report of the Animal Husbandry department has ruled out bird flu as the cause of death,” said J K Makwana, DCF at Rajula, adding that they suspect poisoning, deliberate or otherwise, as the cause of death.

Migratory cranes (which come to the Indian subcontinent each winter from Mongolia and China) and kites had been found dead on Saturday near the salt pans in Victor dam area of Rajula, where Gujarat Heavy Chemicals is based.

... A wildlife activist from the area said these crops are sometimes laced with fertilizers and pesticides since neelgai and wild boars often devour them while they are being dried, and slowly poison the animals.

The Indian Express -
07 Dec 2012
Location: Rajula, India- Map It   

What Ebola virus means for primate populations

For most, the mere mention of Ebola virus provokes abject fear - the archetypal blockbuster contagion - but just how dangerous is it to our ape cousins?

A recent report highlighting possible Ebola virus infection in Indonesian orangutan populations provides a timely reminder of the threat to animal and human health that emerging virus infections pose.

...Population surveys of these great apes revealed a shocking truth. Massive declines in ape numbers had consistently accorded with Ebola virus outbreaks. In one study population in the Lossi Sanctuary in DR Congo, more than 90% of gorillas - an alarming 5,000 animals - were lost.

BBC News -
07 Dec 2012
J Ball

The Rise of Wildlife Trafficking: Human and animal well-being at risk

.... It is not only the well-being of animals at stake in wildlife trafficking, but also human health and safety.

Dr. Cristián Samper, Wildlife Conservation Society president and CEO, says trafficking creates “blood money,” which supports local insurgencies and terrorist activities. Trafficking also presents major health concerns.

“Smuggling of wildlife across international borders bypasses quarantine and other health regulations, which risks the spread of infectious diseases such as Ebola, SARS, monkey pox and others,” he said in a statement.

The U.S. State Department has linked wildlife trafficking to other criminal activities, rolling out a campaign this week to raise awareness of the issue and releasing a fact sheet that lists global and domestic initiatives to combat the trade.

Epoch Times -
07 Dec 2012
S Adams

More News on Wildlife Trafficking

Deer Disease News
Harmful Algal Bloom News
One Health News Corner

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