Researchers Provide New Insights into Lyme Disease Solutions
Summarized by M.R.G.
According to an article written by Joe Lipovich of the CT Patch, Tim R. Hofmeester, a graduate student at the Netherlands' Wageningen University, led a recently published study that exposes new insights into the spread of Lyme disease, in which the red fox plays a vital role. Ticks that carry Lyme disease live on prey animals such as mice. With a decrease in predators such as foxes, prey populations increase and the ticks with them. According to the study, an increase in predators doesn’t actually decrease the abundance of prey, but rather causes the prey to engage in more “refuging behavior”, thus staying out of the way of ticks. There is research that suggests further that human interactions are driving up tick populations. For instance, rising temperatures and premature springs caused by climate change allow ticks to be active much earlier in the season. Therefore, being more aware of how we as human impact the environment is important to controlling the spread of tick borne illnesses. Working together with the natural order is one solution ready for the taking.
To view the entire article, click here.
GOOD NEWS FOR ANIMALS:
Animal protectors in Vietnam, a center for bear bile farming, arranged for 1000 bears who were living in painful and squalid conditions to be relocated. Legislation was passed so that within ten years (a loooong time for the bears) bear bile farming will not be allowed at all.
However, enforcement is weak and places to care for the rescued bears need to be found or set up.
To learn more about this horrific business, see this article by Kyle Swenson in the Washington Post:
To become involved with an organization that is helping the bears, visit: www.animalsasia.org