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Monday, December 19, 2011
Calling on Cattle
Lesanna, Anna, Felix and I went to visit Felix’s research cattle herd in Simanjiro, which is south of Arusha. Felix has hired six Maasai men to monitor the herd. His research project involves determining the effectiveness of a vaccine for the prevention of the disease malignant catarrhal fever.
We’re incorporating fecal hormone analysis to investigate the relationship between disease prevalence and stress levels. It was great fun working with the cattle in the chute that was made out of cut tree branches.
We all helped collect samples (feces) from the cattle and trained the assistants to also collect the samples. It’s a small example of how the zoo is always finding new ways for its scientists to work together and harness each other’s expertise.
Serengeti Field Diaries
Lincoln Park Zoo is leading the Serengeti Health Initiative, a collaborative effort to preserve the wildlife of this African ecosystem while benefiting local people. Our Serengeti field diaries feature updates as scientists conduct vaccination efforts, collaborate with Tanzanian partners and encounter the Serengeti’s famed wildlife.
Rachel Santymire, Ph.D.
An endocrinologist in the Davee Center for Epidemiology and Endocrinology, Santymire studies stress and reproduction at the zoo and in the wild.
A graduate student in the department of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Anna is studying how rabies vaccination campaigns of domestic dogs in villages around Serengeti National Park affect population dynamics.
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