Spatiotemporal spread of sarcoptic mange in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Switzerland over more than 60 years: lessons learnt from comparative analysis of multiple surveillance tools.

Pisano, Simone; Zimmermann, Fridolin; Rossi, Luca; Capt, Simon; Akdesir, Ezgi; Bürki, Roland; Kunz, Florin; Origgi, Francesco; Ryser-Degiorgis, Marie-Pierre (2019). Spatiotemporal spread of sarcoptic mange in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Switzerland over more than 60 years: lessons learnt from comparative analysis of multiple surveillance tools. Parasites & Vectors, 12(1), p. 521. BioMed Central 10.1186/s13071-019-3762-7

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BACKGROUND Sarcoptic mange is a contagious skin disease of wild and domestic mammals caused by the mite Sarcoptes scabiei. Reports of sarcoptic mange in wildlife increased worldwide in the second half of the 20th century, especially since the 1990s. The aim of this study was to provide new insights into the epidemiology of mange by (i) documenting the emergence of sarcoptic mange in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in the last decades in Switzerland; and (ii) describing its spatiotemporal spread combining data obtained through different surveillance methods. METHODS Retrospective analysis of archived material together with prospective data collection delivered a large dataset from the 19th century to 2018. Methods included: (i) a review of historical literature; (ii) screening of necropsy reports from general health surveillance (1958-2018); (iii) screening of data on mange (1968-1992) collected during the sylvatic rabies eradication campaign; (iv) a questionnaire survey (<1980-2017) and (v) evaluation of camera-trap bycatch data (2005-2018). RESULTS Sarcoptic mange in red foxes was reported as early as 1835 in Switzerland. The first case diagnosed in the framework of the general health surveillance was in 1959. Prior to 1980, sarcoptic mange occurred in non-adjacent surveillance districts scattered all over the country. During the period of the rabies epidemic (1970s-early 1990s), the percentage of foxes tested for rabies with sarcoptic mange significantly decreased in subregions with rabies, whereas it remained high in the few rabies-free subregions. Sarcoptic mange re-emerged in the mid-1990s and continuously spread during the 2000-2010s, to finally extend to the whole country in 2017. The yearly prevalence of mange in foxes estimated by camera-trapping ranged from 0.1-12%. CONCLUSIONS Sarcoptic mange has likely been endemic in Switzerland as well as in other European countries at least since the mid-19th century. The rabies epidemics seem to have influenced the pattern of spread of mange in several locations, revealing an interesting example of disease interaction in free-ranging wildlife populations. The combination of multiple surveillance tools to study the long-term dynamics of sarcoptic mange in red foxes in Switzerland proved to be a successful strategy, which underlined the usefulness of questionnaire surveys.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)

Division/Institute:

05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Institute of Animal Pathology
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Center for Fish and Wildlife Health (FIWI)
05 Veterinary Medicine > Research Foci > Host-Pathogen Interaction
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Institute of Virology and Immunology
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP)

UniBE Contributor:

Pisano, Simone; Akdesir, Ezgi; Origgi, Francesco and Ryser, Marie Pierre

Subjects:

600 Technology > 630 Agriculture
500 Science > 590 Animals (Zoology)
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

ISSN:

1756-3305

Publisher:

BioMed Central

Language:

English

Submitter:

Achim Braun Parham

Date Deposited:

26 Feb 2020 07:59

Last Modified:

01 Mar 2020 02:50

Publisher DOI:

10.1186/s13071-019-3762-7

PubMed ID:

31690337

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Camera-trapping Disease interference Necropsy Post-mortem examination Questionnaire Rabies Sarcoptes scabiei Scabies Surveillance

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.140302

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/140302

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