Domestic cats, bobcats and pumas may bridge infection gap between people and wildlife
Update February 8, 2012 PM: The paper is finally posted on PLoS One and a responsive author sent me a copy several days ago:
Three pathogens in sympatric populations of pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats: Implications for infectious disease transmission.
Update February 6, 2012: The paper MAY not be posted on PLoS until Wednesday February 8; they had some typesetting challenges!
Domestic Cats, and Wild Bobcats and Pumas, Living in Same Area Have Same Diseases
May bring them into human homes, bridging "infection gap" between people and wildlife
National Science Foundation
February 3, 2012
VandeWoude and Crooks say that the results don't necessarily mean that all domestic cats that are allowed to roam outdoors are at a high level of risk. They plan further studies to better assess that risk.
It does mean that domestic cats and wild cats who share the same environment--even if they do not come into contact with each other--also can share diseases.
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Feral Cat Blog! Note:
This study was published in Plos One yesterday; when I locate the full text, I'll share the link here. Although this title is not mentioned in various news announcements, it is listed on various author pages as:
Bevins, S. N., S. Carver, E. E. Boydston, L. M. Lyren, M. Alldredge, K. A. Logan, S. P. D. Riley, R. N. Fisher, T. W. Vickers, W. Boyce, M. Salman, M. R. Lappin, K, R. Crooks, and S. VandeWoude. In Press. Three pathogens in sympatric populations of pumas, bobcats, and domestic cats: Implications for infectious disease transmission. PLoS ONE.
This project was familiar to me as, compiling for a decade all significant info related to cats / feral freeroaming community cats including research, in my files were the 2008 job description posted in the Ecolog listserv and announcements from Colorado State in June 2010 and July 2010. I came across it again in recent months while sharing various studies using remote camera traps.
The research award was announced in October 2007:
Colorado State Researchers Study Impact of Habitat Fragmentation on Disease Transmission Among Wild Big Cats
FORT COLLINS - The National Science Foundation awarded Colorado State University scientists a $2.3 million grant to study how habitat fragmentation in parts of the United States influences the transmission of diseases among bobcats, pumas and domestic cats. This work will ultimately help scientists in the future identify how urbanization influences the dynamics of infectious disease among wildlife populations and domestic pets.
Addendum - also in my files:
Abstract from the SCB 24th Annual Meeting
(Society for Conservation Biologists)
3-7 July 2010, Edmonton, Alberta
P2.71 Crooks, KR*; Bevins, SN; Tracey, JA; VandeWoude, S; Colorado State University;
The effects of urban fragmentation and landscape connectivity on disease prevalence and transmission in North American felids
Abstract from the Society for Conservation Biology
25th International Congress for Conservation Biology
December 6, 2011
The impact of urbanization on pathogens of North
American wild felids
Carver, S*, Colorado State University; Bevins, SN, Colorado State University; Lappin, MR, Colorado State University; Crooks, KR, Colorado State University; VandeWoude, S, Colorado State University