Funding to track wildlife diseases

by Editorial Staff | March 15, 2023
funding to track deer in a field

The federal government announced $2.1 million in funding over three years to improve our knowledge and management of issues related to wildlife diseases.

The projects will be led by the Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative based out of the University of Saskatchewan.

The projects funded will track wildlife health and the risks of emerging diseases. The funds will also be directed towards planned projects for identifying and predicting the impacts of climate change on wildlife health that include avenues for action.

In addition, education and outreach programs will be provided to non-governmental organizations, Indigenous groups, the provinces and territories, and Canadians, to encourage their participation in wildlife health surveillance.

There will also be funding to improve coordination and data management for Highly pathogenic avian influenza among partners.

Bats will benefit from a project that includes coordination of surveillance programs for white-nose syndrome and other emerging diseases. The project will also identify potential critical habitat for other bats.

What is avian influenza?

Avian influenza virus is a contagious viral infection that affects domestic and wild birds. Many strains occur naturally in wild birds and circulate in migratory populations. Avian influenza virus is designated HPAI when it has characteristics that cause mass disease and mortality in infected susceptible poultry. 

Wild and domestic birds can become infected when they are in contact with saliva, nasal secretions, or feces of infected birds, or through indirect contact with contaminated surfaces and substrates. 

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