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From Cities to Jungles, We Are Set To Tackle Global Wildlife Health Concerns

Are environmental contaminants affecting the health of city-dwelling birds and the fish in our lakes, rivers and streams? Why are koalas getting cancers such as lymphoma and leukemia? What is causing the banded mongoose in Botswana’s Chobe National Park to die in record numbers? These are just a few of the wildlife health concerns that will be investigated this year by researchers receiving funding from Morris Animal Foundation.

There are millions of animal species on the planet and many face health challenges. That’s why Morris Animal Foundation recently awarded more than $1 million to support wildlife health projects that will benefit numerous species including birds, fish, amphibians, marine and land mammals around the world. The projects range from studies of foot-and-mouth disease in African buffalo to the effects of environmental lead exposure on the New Orleans’ mockingbird population.

Morris Animal Foundation’s Wildlife Scientific Advisory Board, which is made up of wildlife health experts from around the world, volunteer their time and knowledge each year to review wildlife health grant requests. Receiving a Morris Animal Foundation grant is a highly competitive process. Funding decisions are always tough and the need for funding is always great. In total, Morris Animal Foundation is currently managing 61 active wildlife health projects that include training grants for new scientists.

“Wildlife conservation and advocacy receive a great deal of funding; however, funding for research to answer the pressing questions in wildlife health is sorely lacking,” said David Haworth, DVM, PhD, president and CEO of Morris Animal Foundation. “We desperately need well-conceived and well-conducted scientific studies to save many of these species, and that’s where Morris Animal Foundation can help. We can identify the most impactful work, and provide hope for many species to survive and thrive into the future.” 

Categories: Wildlife health
June 5, 2014