Anim Conserv 1999 Nov 28;2(4):241-254. Epub 2006 Feb 28.
Department of Forestry and Wildlife Management, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003, USA.
Large carnivores are of vital importance to the stability and integrity of most ecosystems, but recent declines in free-ranging populations have highlighted the potentially devastating effect of infectious diseases on their conservation. We reviewed the literature on infectious diseases of 34 large (maximum body mass of adults >20 kg) terrestrial carnivore species, 18 of which are considered to be threatened in the wild, and examined reports of antibody prevalence (seroprevalence) and cases of infection, mortality and population decline. Of 52 diseases examined, 44% were viral, 31% bacterial and the remainder were protozoal or fungal. Read More