Wildlife Diagnostics

The Wildlife Department studies free-living and captive wildlife populations. This includes determining the causes of death as well as clarifying the causes and treatment options for diseases. The investigation of huntable and protected wildlife is carried out on behalf of the FOEN (Federal Office for the Environment).

Monitoring the health status of wildlife is important for a number of reasons:

  • Wild animals are reservoirs for zoonoses (e.g. rabies, echinococcosis, tularaemia).
  • Wild animals are reservoirs for domestic and farm animal diseases (e.g. tuberculosis) and are inversely susceptible to domestic animal diseases (e.g. gem blindness).
  • Wildlife diseases can threaten endanger endangered animal species and impair reintroduction projects.
  • Wildlife acts as bioindicators: the health status of wildlife is an indication of environmental quality.
  • Hunted animal species are a food resource and must comply with food hygiene standards.
  • A healthy animal population is part of cultural ecosystem services (recreation, nature observation).