|Title||Health Survey of boreal caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) in northeastern British Columbia, Canada|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2019|
|Authors||Bondo KJ, Macbeth B, Schwantje H, Orsel K, Culling D, Culling B, Tryland M, Nymo IH, Kutz S|
|Journal||J Wildl Dis|
Boreal woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) are listed as threatened across Canada, and a basic understanding of their health status is lacking. From December 2012 to April 2013, we investigated multiple health indices for adult female boreal caribou (n=163) captured from seven herds in NE British Columbia, Canada. Health indices included physical characteristics, physiologic and trace mineral status, exposure to or infection with selected pathogens, and measures of chronic stress and inflammation, including serum amyloid A, haptoglobin, and hair cortisol concentration. Key findings were exposure to the bacterium Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae in 14% of individuals, mild to severe hair loss associated with winter tick (Dermacentor albipictus) infestations in 76% of caribou from December to early February and 81% from late February to early April, and evidence of trace mineral deficiencies with 99% and 34% of individuals deficient in copper and selenium, respectively.