Yellowstone Wildlife Health Program
Wildlife, domestic animals and humans share a large and increasing number of infectious diseases. At Yellowstone National Park, several wildlife diseases currently (or may) determine the outcome of the park’s conservation mandate.
Accomplishments to date:
- Development of a highly productive program within a short period of time using minimal staff and funding.
- Establishment of a surveillance program that targets diseases of important wildlife groups and response plans for specific diseases such as brucellosis and chronic wasting disease.
- Collaborations with 21 different agencies and academic institutions on projects directly applicable to park management.
- Contributions to the advanced education of 4 graduate students.
- Peer review and publication of 15 papers in scientific journals.
- Creation of a wildlife disease surveillance laboratory to safely process analyze and store biological samples.
- Development of protocols and standard operating procedures for employee health and safety.
Future elements of the program may include:
- Competitive funding for wildlife and ecosystem health research
- resident ecosystem health field director
- on-site veterinary services
- wildlife disease diagnostics
- research field lab capacity
- Yellowstone Wildlife Health training