Reports of garden wildlife disease or mortality are very important to inform our understanding of wildlife health in Great Britain. Reports from vigilant members of the public are often the only sources of information available. Gardens are habitats of increasing importance to wildlife and are often visited by a large number of species. Sometimes they are also the only places where we can catch a glimpse of their lives. By submitting a Disease Incident Report (DIR) you will be contributing directly to a better understanding of the ailments affecting wildlife in Britain.
Disease in wildlife has been shown to cause population declines and even extinctions at a species level and can be a welfare concern. It is important that we monitor trends in disease to identify emerging threats.
Every report submitted contributes to a national database of wildlife disease. Samples from every specimen submitted are archived at the Zoological Society of London in one of the largest wildlife tissue banks in the world. These are invaluable resources to study and safeguard the health of British wildlife. We also create reports that inform government policy and liaise with the relevant agencies when a domestic animal or human health threat is identified. If you are interested in our findings to date, check out the History section or look through our list of Publications.
If you report a wildlife disease incident, you may also receive advice on how to reduce wild animal suffering and disease in your garden.
If you submit a carcass, you will receive a detailed report of the findings of the post-mortem examination and any tests that are performed. On a case by case basis, we may also give guidance on how to control disease outbreaks and reduce the likelihood of their recurrence. Please remember, we are not a veterinary clinic and cannot establish a duty of care for the animals in your garden.