Article

Contacts between domestic livestock and wildlife at the Kruger National Park Interface of the Republic of South Africa.

Department of Veterinary Integrative Biosciences, Texas A&M University, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, College Station, TX 77843-4458, USA.
Preventive Veterinary Medicine (Impact Factor: 2.51). 09/2011; 103(1):16-21. DOI: 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2011.08.003
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT One of the most important transboundary animal diseases (TADs) in the southern African region is foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). In this region, a pathway for spread of FMD virus is contacts between cattle and certain species of wildlife. The objective of this study was to evaluate contacts between cattle and wildlife in the Kruger National Park (KNP) and the adjacent Limpopo province for the time periods October 2006 to March 2007 and April to September 2007. In this study, 87 livestock owners and 57 KNP field rangers were interviewed. Fifteen (17%) livestock owners reported contacts between wildlife and cattle. More livestock owners reported observing contacts between cattle and all wildlife species during October-March than April-September (p=0.012). However, no difference was found between these periods for contacts between cattle and individual wildlife species. A total of 18 (32%) field rangers reported contacts between cattle and wildlife. The most common species-specific contacts were between cattle and buffalo (63/year), cattle and impala (17/year) and cattle and lion (10/year). There were no significant differences in rangers reporting observed contacts between cattle and wildlife during October-March versus April-September or between rangers reporting observed contacts outside versus within the KNP. Overall, there was no evidence of higher contact rates between cattle and wildlife in the study area during October-March compared to April-September. Contact data collected in this study can be used to better understand the transmission of FMD virus in this region.

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