Category Archives: Animal Microbiology

Protecting penguins from avian malaria

In 2016, a colony of penguins living in Exmoor Zoo in the UK suddenly died after an outbreak of avian malaria, a parasitic disease spread by the bites of infected mosquitoes. Sadly, this isn’t the only time that avian malaria … Continue reading

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A killer snake fungus has been found in wild British snakes for the first time

Back in April 2016, we wrote about an emerging disease that’s been killing wild snake populations in North America. Snake fungal disease, or SFD, is an infection that leads to blisters and lesions on snakes’ skin, turning scales yellow and … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Microbiology, Emerging Diseases | Tagged | 3 Comments

Researchers are hunting for viruses that could cause the next pandemic

Scientists around the world are looking for the next SARS or MERS virus in wildlife from disease emergence ‘hotspots’. giulia/Flickr/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 In late 2002, a new kind of lung infection began to emerge in the Guandong province of southern … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Microbiology, Emerging Diseases, On the Horizon, Virology | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

The fungus that makes ‘zombie ants’ could use biological clocks to control their minds

The world of parasites can sometimes be extremely gruesome. Take, for example, the charming female jewel wasp, which uses a cockroach as a living incubator for its larvae. The wasp stings the roach in the brain, and leads the much bigger … Continue reading

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Investigating Lyme disease on the South Downs

The South Downs National Park is an area that stretches for 140 km along the South Coast of England, and is home to a huge diversity of plants and animals. Some of the smaller inhabitants of the park are ticks: … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Microbiology, Clinical and Medical Microbiology, Emerging Diseases | Tagged | 3 Comments

Koalas have a virus that might protect them from chlamydia

In 2016, the koala was upgraded from ‘Least Concern’ to ‘Vulnerable’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The cuddly-looking marsupial is not only threatened by habitat loss, but also by disease – most notably chlamydia infections. Different species … Continue reading

Posted in Animal Microbiology, Events, Virology | 3 Comments

In New York State, bats are showing signs of recovery from white-nose syndrome

Bats in North America are in trouble. Millions of them have died over the past few years, over an area that stretches for thousands of miles, from Nova Scotia in Eastern Canada to Nebraska in the heart of North America. … Continue reading

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