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 Wildlife Disease: Domestic Animal Health

 What is the Domestic Animal Health Connection?

    Wildlife and agriculture interact in a wide variety of ways that facilitate the movement of infectious disease agents between the animals of both resources. Further, the importance of these agriculture-wildlife interfaces for disease emergence and resurgence will continue to increase as an outcome of the increasing globalization of society, landscape transformation associated with human population growth and as a potential linkage for agroterrorism. Thus, there is a mutual need by wildlife and agriculture interests to have timely access to sound information about diseases within domestic animal populations and wild fauna. This need extends beyond the presence and eruption of disease to the ecology of diseases that are of concern. The development of informed risk assessments and effective strategies for protecting agriculture and wildlife, alike, from disease is dependent upon this basic information.

Wildlife-domestic animal disease interfaces occur across a broad spectrum of species and components of the agriculture industry. Current examples include brucellosis (Brucella abortus) in elk and bison of the Greater Yellowstone Basin, an issue involving the potential for disease transfer to livestock grazing on public lands as well as potential interfaces on ranch lands; tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis) in Michigan, white-tailed deer involving potential interfaces with the captive cervid industry (elk and deer) and with cattle; and the common poultry-waterbirds interfaces associated with avian influenza. Clearly the intimacy between many aspects of animal agriculture and wildlife elevates the value of sound information for both to guide effective disease prevention and control in either.

Milton Friend
USGS Emeritus Scientist
Founding Director, USGS National Wildlife Health Center

Current Biological Issues
Biodiversity | Bird Conservation | Coral Reefs | Frogweb: Amphibian Declines & Malformations
Invasive Species | Pollinator Declines | West Nile Virus | Wildlife Disease

This site was developed and is maintained by NBII as a collaborative effort with the
U. S. Geological Survey's National Wildlife Health Center and the
University of Wisconsin-Madison's Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies

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University of Wisconsin-Madison's Nelson Institute of Environmental Studies


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