Avian Health and Disease Program
The Avian Health and Disease Program, part of the Division of Migratory Bird Management, was formed in 2011 to expand health and disease surveillance, response, and management activities for avian populations. Habitat fragmentation, changes in land-use patterns, climate change, and globalization of marketing and distribution all influence the health of our nation’s bird populations. The Avian Health and Disease Program is designed to identify, understand and address avian health issues to support avian conservation, population monitoring, and management goals of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service).
The Service is working in partnership with state agencies and disease laboratories to collect data and investigate small and large scale bird mortality events, and provide training and preparedness activities for staff to safely respond to mortality events. The National Wildlife Refuge System Inventory and Monitoring Program is also working to incorporate morbidity and mortality surveillance efforts on wildlife refuges.
The Midwest Region Division of Migratory Bird Management has funded the following research as part of the Avian Health and Disease Program since 2011.
- Understanding the movement of pathogens between wild bird populations
- Investigating disease outbreak potential for Lesser Scaup on newly-infested lakes and rivers in Minnesota
- Trematodiasias effects on scaup in the Upper Mississippi River Basin
- Factors influencing avian influenza virus among wild birds in northwestern Ohio
- Impacts of non-native habitats on bird health
- Information sharing on common diseases in wild birds of the Central Flyway
- Investigating Newcastle Disease Virus in Wisconsin
- Investigating Newcastle Disease Virus surveillance in Minnesota
- Monitoring mute swan health in Michigan
- Educating biologists on wildlife disease ecology and surveillance