The current standard of surveillance of foreign animal disease in the U.S. relies on cooperative producers and practitioners to gather and send suspect samples to approved labs based on their best judgements.
While it’s understood that predators like wolves can directly reduce disease among their prey by killing those infected, these findings suggest that wolf influence on cervid movements and habitat choices might indirectly reduce parasite transmission.
The outbreak occurred in two waves, first between October and December of 2020 and again, in larger numbers, beginning in April of 2021.
Proactive assessments provide a scientific blueprint—complete with a calculated risk rating—to inform animal movement decisions for a variety of food-supply pathways during such outbreaks.
Samples of hair, blood, and heart tissue are en route to the College of Veterinary Medicine’s Equine Genetics and Genomics Laboratory, where scientists studying cardiac arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death in racehorses will apply their expertise to the overall picture of the 3-year-old colt’s death.