U.S. Department of Agriculture: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service


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Ramey, C.A., K.W. Mills, J.W. Fischer, R.G. McLean, K.A. Fagerstone, and R.M. Engeman. 2013. Graphically characterizing the movement of a rabid striped skunk epizootic across the landscape in northwestern Wyoming. EcoHealth 10(3):246-256. doi: 10.1007/s10393-013-0853-3.


U.S. government work.


A striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis) rabies epizootic in northwestern Wyoming was studied from the Index Case in 1988 to the last case in 1993, and possibly is the first rabies epizootic in a previously rabies-free zone monitored from beginning to end. The 843 km2 study area comprised skunk habitat along 90 km of Shoshone River’s floodplain from Bighorn Lake upstream to Cody. Of 1,015 skunks tested, 215 were rabiespositive. Integrating spatial and temporal data from positive cases, we analyzed the epizootic’s movements and dynamics at 6-month intervals using multivariate movement maps, a new multivariate descriptive methodology presented here to demonstrate the epizootic’s directional flow, while illustrating areas with higher case densities (i.e., wave crests). This approach should help epidemiologists and public health officials to better understand future rabies epizootics.

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