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Health evaluation of wild lemurs and carnivores in Madagascar

Health evaluation of lemurs and carnivores inhabiting protected areas of Madagascar

Mahaliana has been involved in research projects that aim to characterize the health of wild animals in Madagascar by establishing reference biomedical values. For many wild animal species, basic blood analysis values are missing. Yet, they constitute an important piece of information to answer a simple question: “What is a healthy lemur/fosa?”. These data can also be used to assess the effects of anthropogenic habitat change or provide means to compare health data of the same population longitudinally, between different wild populations, and with animals in captivity. The baseline data obtained through these biomedical survey projects are used to guide animal reintroduction or translocations and have become a necessary tool for conservation action.
Through related research, we showed that wild lemurs are increasingly infected and potentially threatened by pathogens infecting humans and domestic animals. For example, lemurs that live near the borders of the reserve were infected with several parasites and bacteria typically infecting humans, whereas individuals living on the interior, less disturbed part were not. This suggests that interactions between species along a habitat disturbance gradient facilitate the spread of pathogens.

Related publications:

1. Rasambainarivo FT, Junge RE, Lewis RJ. BIOMEDICAL EVALUATION OF VERREAUX’S SIFAKA (PROPITHECUS VERREAUXI) FROM KIRINDY MITEA NATIONAL PARK IN MADAGASCAR. Journal of zoo and wildlife medicine : official publication of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians. 2014;45:247–55.

2. Junge RE, Dutton CJ, Knightly F, Williams CV, Rasambainarivo FT, Louis EE. Comparison of biomedical evaluation for white-fronted brown lemurs (Eulemur fulvus albifrons) from four sites in Madagascar. Journal of zoo and wildlife medicine : official publication of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians. 2008;39:567–75.

3. Zohdy S, Grossman MK, Fried IR, Rasambainarivo FT, Wright PC, Gillespie TR. Diversity and Prevalence of Diarrhea-Associated Viruses in the Lemur Community and Associated Human Population of Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar. International Journal of Primatology. 2015;36:143–53.

4. Bublitz DC, Wright PC, Bodager JR, Rasambainarivo FT, Bliska JB, Gillespie TR. Epidemiology of Pathogenic Enterobacteria in Humans, Livestock, and Peridomestic Rodents in Rural Madagascar. PLoS ONE. 2014;9:e101456.

5. Rasambainarivo FT, Gillespie TR, Wright PC, Arsenault J, Villeneuve A, Lair S. Survey of Giardia and Cryptosporidium in lemurs from the Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar. Journal of Wildlife Diseases. 2013;49:741–3

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