Wolves are carriers of up to fifty diseases and parasites that can be transmitted to previously unaffected wildlife, livestock, and people. Two of the diseases that have gotten much attention in the study of diseases transmitted by wolves are Echinococcus Granulosus and Neospora Caninum.
Ehinococcus Granulosus involves canids and wild carnivores as a definitive host for the adult tapeworm. Definitive hosts are when parasites reach maturity and reproduce. Wild or domesticated ungulates, such as sheep, elk, and deer serve as an intermediate host. Transitions between life stages occur in intermediate hosts. The larval stage results in the formation of echinococcal cysts in intermediate hosts. Echinococcal cysts are slow growing,but can cause clinical symptoms in humans and be life-threatening. Cysts may not initially cause symptoms, in some cases for many years. Symptoms developed depend on location of the cyst, but most occur in the liver, lungs, or both. Click on the link below for a detailed description of the disease.
Neospora Caninum is a parasite that was identified as a species in 1988. The genome sequence has been shown to cause spontaneous abortions in affected livestock. New research has shown that wolves are definitive hosts. Click on the link below for a detailed description of the disease.
How many wolves inhabit Wisconsin? Currently the Wisconsin DNR estimates a minimum count of 232 packs that have 925 to 956 wolves living in our state. The count is up 6.8% over last year's minimum count. (Note: This is a minimum count and many believe the number is much higher.)
How many deer do wolves eat? Check out the link below to review an analysis of the 2015 deer season vs. wolf deer kill by county in the Northern Forest Land
Please click the link below to see the relationship between the White-tailed deer harvest decline and the increase in unmanaged wolf population.