Check out this interesting article from University of Washington's Conservation Magazine!
"It’s bad enough that the world is losing elephants, rhinos, and other large mammals so quickly. But their disappearance can have ecosystem-wide implications. When large wildlife species decline, rodent populations rise rapidly — and so does the prevalence of the diseases they carry.
For example, Bartonella bacteria cause an infection in rodents and their fleas. The jumpy parasites are vectors for spreading the disease to humans, where bartonellosis can lead to joint swelling and memory loss. This and other zoonotic diseases — those transmitted between animals and humans — tend to become more common with wildlife loss, but no one knows exactly what’s behind the trend."
See the rest of the article here: http://conservationmagazine.org/2014/05/declines-in-wildlife-drive-rodent-borne-diseases/
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