SNAPP TEAM:Steppe Health
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Can diverse stakeholders stop a fatal viral epidemic threatening endangered wildlife and livestock critical to over half the people in Mongolia?

Peste des petits ruminants (PPR) is an extremely contagious viral disease that is spreading into new regions across the globe, causing devastating socio-economic losses and serious damage to the livelihoods, food security, and nutrition for millions of small-scale farmers and pastoralists. In Mongolia, the effects of the epidemic have been particularly dire. In August 2016, PPR killed thousands of head of livestock, despite widespread vaccination. The disease also impacted wildlife, killing more than 50 percent of the critically endangered Mongolian saiga antelope in less than two months. This catastrophic loss of wildlife also caused immediate consequences for other endangered animals, including snow leopards that depend on wild ungulates for food.

 

OUR APPROACH: Along with livestock health authorities, herders, biologists, wildlife health specialists, international aid organizations and conservation NGOs, the working group will seek new ideas to free the country’s wildlife, economy, and livelihoods from this disease, and explore options for integrated management of wildlife and livestock health.

Team Status: ONGOING
Team Critical Challenge:
Goals
  • Produce a comprehensive report on the PPR outbreak at the wildlife-livestock interface in Mongolia, including its characteristics and drivers, by facilitating data sharing across livestock management, livestock health, wildlife health, and conservation sectors
  • Develop a multi-criteria evaluation (MCE) to map the risk of disease transmissions and spread between livestock and wildlife using expert knowledge from livestock herders, government authorities, epidemiologists, biologists, and other stakeholders. Risk maps will support decisions surrounding the surveillance, management, and control of PPR in Mongolia
  • Create a population and disease dynamics model to understand the long term behavior of PPR where wildlife and livestock interact to guide PPR eradication in Mongolia (and globally)
  • Identify participatory approaches (e.g. reporting tools) to empower citizens to work with authorities as active participants in disease surveillance, control, and eradication
Key Products
PPR virus threatens wildlife conservation

The circulation of PPR in Asia has grave consequences in wildlife populations already struggling with overhunting, poaching, livestock competition, and climatic events. We urgently need more PPR surveillance and wildlife protection measures.

Outbreak of Peste des Petits Ruminants among Critically Endangered Mongolian Saiga and Other Wild Ungulates

In this piece, published by the CDC, the authors determine that the mass mortality of both wildlife and domestic ungulates was caused by the introduction of the peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV).

Eradication of Peste des Petits Ruminants Virus and the Wildlife-Livestock Interface

The team  published a framework that lays the foundation for eradicating PPRV in a five-year period by covering four major components.

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Team
Leaders
Amanda Fine
Wildlife Conservation Society
Enkhtuvshin Shiiledgdamba
Wildlife Conservation Society
Members
Andy Dobson
Princeton University
Bayarjargal Yunden
The Nature Conservancy
Bodisaikhan Khishgee
Veterinary and Animal Breeding Agency, Ministry of Food, Agriculture & Light Industry
Chimiddorj Buyannemekh
WWF Mongolia
Felix Njeumi
UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
Jamiyankhuu Narmandakh
Dept of Environment & Natural Resources, Ministry of Environment & Tourism
Jeffery Mariner
Tufts University
Lhagvasuren Badamjav
Mongolian Academy of Sciences
Mathieu Pruvot
Wildlife Conservation Society
Richard Kock
Royal Veterinary College, University of London
Véronique Chevalier
French Agricultural Research for Development (CIRAD)
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