Wild boar and the spread of Africa swine fever

Mapping the potential habitats of wild boar in Europe and Asia as a means of managing the spread of African swine fever

Data resources used via GBIF : 10,190 species occurrences
A sounder of wild boar (Sus scrofa)

A sounder of wild boar (Sus scrofa). Photo by ariel-shamir via iNaturalist licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0

Wild boar (Sus scrofa) can act as reservoirs of diseases that can infect both livestock and humans. In certain regions of Europe, populations of wild boar are responsible for maintaining and spreading African swine fever (ASF) across borders.

In this paper, authors use standardized global vegetation data combined with expert opinions to generate a map showing quality of available habitats in endemic (mainly Russia) and non-endemic (mainly EU) scenarios. They superimpose occurrences of wild boar from GBIF and other sources, as well as reported ASF cases on the generated map to assess the quality of their model.

More than half of the occurrences were in areas classified as having the highest level of suitability, indicating a good predictive ability of the model. However, ASF cases differed in the endemic and non-endemic scenario showing that wild boar play a key role ASF spread in the EU.

The presented map suggests areas that should be the focus of wildlife management and can be an important tool in epidemiological studies.

Citations

Bosch J, Iglesias I, Muñoz MJ and de la Torre A (2016) A Cartographic Tool for Managing African Swine Fever in Eurasia: Mapping Wild Boar Distribution Based on the Quality of Available Habitats. Transboundary and Emerging Diseases. Wiley-Blackwell. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1111/tbed.12559.

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