Ebola has profound effects on wildlife population dynamics

Aug 18, 2014
This image shows gorillas in an Ebola study. Credit: Céline Genton, University of Rennes 1

New research in gorillas that were affected by an Ebola virus outbreak shows that disease can influence reproductive potential, immigration and social dynamics, and it highlights the need to develop complex models that integrate all the different impacts of a disease.

This approach requires long-term monitoring of wildlife populations to understand the responses of populations to emerging changes in the environment, according to the Journal of Animal Ecology study.

"Along with the decrease in survival and in reproduction, Ebola outbreak perturbed in gorilla populations. During outbreak, transfers of both males and females between social units increased. Some have been observed transferring to non-breeding groups, which is unusual in non-affected population. Although, six year after outbreak, most of vital rates returned to pre epidemic rate, recovery of the population is slow, especially because no compensatory immigration occurred after outbreak indicating that the neighboring populations might have been also affected," said Dr. Pascaline Le Gouar, senior author of the study.

Explore further: Sierra Leone defends its record on Ebola outbreak

More information: Genton, C., Pierre, A., Cristescu, R., Lévréro, F., Gatti, S., Pierre, J.-S., Ménard, N., Le Gouar, P. (2014), How Ebola impacts social dynamics in gorillas: a multistate modelling approach. Journal of Animal Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12268

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Woman tested for Ebola in Scotland

Aug 15, 2014

A woman who fell ill at an immigration facility centre in Scotland is being tested for the Ebola virus, health officials said Friday.

Should the world be scared of Ebola?

Aug 08, 2014

After AIDS, SARS, avian flu and the coronavirus, now Ebola is in the headlines and sparking panic. AFP asks health historian Patrick Zylberman if the world should fear a pandemic.

Ebola cases rise in Africa as doctors sound alarm

Jun 23, 2014

The international medical organization Doctors Without Borders sounded the alarm Monday over the outbreak of the Ebola disease in West Africa as some 20 new deaths have been reported.

Britain increases aid to fight Ebola

Aug 07, 2014

Britain said Thursday it has committed a further $5 million to help the beleaguered health systems in Sierra Leone and Liberia to fight the spread of Ebola which has killed nearly 1,000 people.

Recommended for you

GMO mosquito plan sparks outcry in Florida

13 hours ago

A British company's plan to unleash hordes of genetically modified mosquitoes in Florida to reduce the threat of dengue fever and other diseases has sparked an outcry from fearful residents.

Population genomics unveil seahorse domain

Jan 30, 2015

In a finding vital to effective species management, a team including City College of New York biologists has determined that the lined seahorse (Hippocampus erectus) is more a permanent resident of the we ...

Researchers develop new potato cultivar

Jan 30, 2015

Dakota Ruby is the name of a new potato cultivar developed by the NDSU potato breeding project and released by the North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station. Dakota Ruby has bright red skin, stores well and is intended ...

Researchers develop new soybean variety

Jan 30, 2015

The North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station has developed and released ND Henson, a conventional soybean variety, according to Rich Horsley, chair of the NDSU Department of Plant Sciences.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.