Marsupial Research Matters: Sarcoptic Mange in Australian Wombats—Scott Carver, PhD—University of Tasmania


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Jul 12 2020 39 mins   1
Scott Carver is a lecturer in wildlife ecology at the University of Tasmania who joins the show to discuss his research in the field of ecology and infectious diseases in wildlife, domestic animals, and humans. In this episode, you will learn: How Australian wombats have contracted sarcoptic mange and how the disease progresses within a wombat What ecological role the wombat plays and what types of human-wombat interactions commonly occur What might explain the mystery of cube-shaped wombat poop Carver has a long-standing interest in connecting an understanding of ecosystem health with the health of animals and humans. Over the course of his education and career, he’s conducted research on mosquito-borne diseases, viral transmission in bobcats, mountain lions, and domestic cats, and even chlamydia in koalas. These days, Carver’s research revolves largely around sarcoptic mange in wombats. It’s a disease that affects over 100 different species, including humans (when it affects humans, it is called scabies), and creates both conservation and animal wellness issues. His research is geared around trying to find disease management solutions for this disease in wombats and other affected species. Carver explains that wombats suffer from a version of mange called crusted mange, which is a particularly severe form of the disease that ultimately results in death. He discusses the ways in which the low metabolic rate of wombats could contribute to the severity of sarcoptic mange, why he has chosen to focus on the wombat as a research subject for better understanding the disease, and much more. Press play for the full conversation and check out https://www.utas.edu.au/profiles/staff/zoology/scott-carver to learn more about Carver’s research. Available on Apple Podcasts: apple.co/2Os0myK