Modelling interactions between climate and livestock pathogen transmission

Anthony James Wilson, Simon Gubbins


Climate affects the transmission of livestock pathogens via multiple direct and indirect pathways. The impact of climate change on livestock pathogens is therefore complex and difficult to predict. Recent improvements in the availability of climatic data, the accumulation of epidemiological data and the development of Bayesian methodologies allow improved inferences to be made about the responses of pathogens to climate change. We discuss recent studies demonstrating these principles and present a proposal for future work using an extensively validated model for the transmission of bluetongue virus to forecast the potential consequences of predicted environmental changes to the expected impact of the disease and efficacy of current control strategies under a range of incursion scenarios.

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