Triage for 10,000 Tortoises
Radiated tortoises (Astrochelys radiata) are found only in Madagascar and are listed as critically endangered by the IUCN. Their intricate radiating star carapacial pattern has made them vulnerable to wildlife poaching for human consumption, traditional medicine, and the illegal pet trade. In April, over 10,000 Radiated tortoises were seized in a raid in Madagascar: one of the largest ever reported chelonian confiscations. A veterinary team was immediately dispatched from the Bronx Zoo to facilitate this mammoth rescue effort.

Ocean Wonders: Sharks!
“Ocean Wonders: Sharks!” at the New York Aquarium opened to the public on June 30. Over the past year our health team has received, examined, and performed quarantine processes on 43 sharks, 26 rays, and approximately 1,000 fishes for the exhibit. Moving the larger sharks requires many people, coordination of their activities, and specialized equipment such as stretchers and cranes to accomplish the move safely:

Hammer-headed Mysteries in the Congo

In addition to causing horrific disease in humans, Ebolaviruses are a significant threat to great apes in Africa; scientists estimate infected populations of great apes have mortality rates above 90%. The fascinating hammer-headed fruit bat (Hypsignathus monstrosus) is suspected to be an asymptomatic reservoir for Ebola viruses and our team is investigating their role in the virus' ecology.

Using E-DNA to Find Endangered Species
Animals shed DNA into the environment in the form of urine, feces and skin cells: so called Environmental DNA or E-DNA. WCS is merging novel E-DNA detection technologies to search for one of the world’s rarest turtles: the Yangtze giant softshell turtle ( Rafetus swinhoei ), only four of which are known to exist.  

One World - One Health TM Website
The WCS Health Programs have a new website where you can learn more about our global initiatives, training opportunities and the wild animal species we work with, from the New York zoological parks and aquarium to the arid grasslands in Central Asia, the humid rainforests of the Congo and beyond.

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The Wildlife Conservation Society was among the first zoos in the world to have full time veterinary care for their animals, with a clinician and pathologist hired in 1903 and a zoo animal hospital opening at the Bronx Zoo in 1916. We were also one of the first conservation organizations with a dedicated team of wildlife veterinarians deployed around the world to address the health of free ranging wildlife and problem-solve at the wildlife / domestic animal / human health and livelihoods interface, all underpinned by a foundation of environmental stewardship.
To learn how to support the  One World - One Health  portfolio at WCS, please contact Dr. Chris Walzer at or Dr. Paul Calle at .

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Photo Credits- WCS (WCS Wildlife Health Programs website); Daniel Rosengren/ Frankfurt Zoological Society (kulan release); Dr Iman Memarian (wildlife disease guide); Sitha Som/ WCS (Batagur)