I have mentioned the Wildlife Disease Center before
The map format will be a great complement to the
global human H5N1 disease map mentioned here
(Where is… Bethel and 2007 bird flu) and to the
MIT HealthMap of the latest alerts on infectious disease around the world
Web tool puts wildlife diseases on the map
Date: Fri 2 May 2008 Source: US Department of the Interior, US Geological Survey (USGS) Office of Communication]
A new on-line map makes it possible, for the 1st time, to track disease outbreaks around the world that threaten the health of wildlife, domestic animals, and people.
Updated daily, the map displays pushpins marking stories of wildlife diseases such as West Nile virus, avian influenza, chronic wasting disease, and monkeypox. Users can browse the latest reports of nearly 50 diseases and other health conditions, such as pesticide and lead poisoning, by geographic location. Filters make it easy to focus on different disease types, affected species, countries, and dates.
The map is a product of the Wildlife Disease Information Node (WDIN), a 5-year-old collaboration between UW-Madison and 2 federal agencies, the National Wildlife Health Center and the National Biological Information Infrastructure, that are part of the USGS. WDIN is housed within the university’s Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the USGS.
“If you click on the name of a particular disease, it takes you to our main website and does a quick search of everything that we have on that topic,” says Cris Marsh, a librarian who oversees the wildlife disease news services for the WDIN. …The WDIN gathers news from more than 20 on-line sources and makes it available in a number of handy formats, from a Wildlife Disease News Digest at to desktop widgets, e-mail, and RSS feeds.
Subscription information for these news delivery services can be found at http://wildlifedisease.nbii.gov/wdindigest.html … “People who collect data about wildlife diseases don’t currently have an established communication network, which is something we’re working to improve,” says Dein. “But just seeing what’s attracting attention in the news gives us a much better picture of what’s out there than we’ve ever had before.”
Concerns about the emergence and spread of diseases that can pass between species have forged new links in recent years between wildlife health, human health, and domestic animal health professionals. “It all ties in together, the ‘One-World, One-Health’ idea,” says Marsh. “The West Nile virus acted as one of the catalysts for that connection. People in different areas in the eastern US began to see isolated incidences of dead and dying crows that seemed abnormally high, but nobody knew other areas were experiencing the same thing.” Because West Nile virus also affects humans and other mammals, it became apparent to scientists that disease outbreaks of this kind need to be addressed as quickly as possible, explains Marsh. Outbreaks of monkeypox and highly pathogenic avian influenza soon afterward underscored the importance of linking information about emerging diseases across all species.
Contact information Chris Marsh cmarsh ATusgsDOTgov Joshua Dein fjdein ATusgsDOTgov US Department of the Interior, US Geological Survey Office of Communication
119 National Center Reston, VA 20192 USA