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Scott, T., Hasse, R. and Nel, L. 2012. Rabies in kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros). Berliner und Münchener tierärztliche Wochenschrift, 125(5-6): 236-241


Description:

Rabies in kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros).

Summary / Notes:

Cycles of terrestrial rabies are associated with carnivores. In non-carnivorous species, rabies typically occurs as a spill-over from the carnivore reservoir and quickly encounters a dead end in such species. One major exception to this scenario has been an ongoing epizootic of rabies in the Greater Kudu, an African antelope. These herbivores are found in high densities in southern Africa, but rabies cycles have only been described from Namibia, a vast country located in the South Western region of Africa. Epizootics were first noted in the late 1970's and losses of up to 50 000 animals were estimated by 1985. Between 2002 and 2011, Namibian conservancies again estimated kudu losses ranging from 30-70%, resulting in very significant economic losses to the farming and gaming industries of the country. The sheer magnitude of the epizootic, phylogenetic data and experimental evidence of the particular susceptibility of kudu to rabies infection via mucous membranes are factors in support of a hypothesis that suggests horizontal transmission and maintenance of a rabies cycle within this species. It has become critical to investigate pathways for effective rabies control in Namibia--including the development of a strategy to halt and reverse the devastating epizootic of kudu rabies.

Year: 2012

Type: Journal Article

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