Carne, Charlotte and Semple, Stuart and MacLarnon, Ann and Majolo, Bonaventura and Marechal, Laetitia (2017) 'Implications of Tourist-Macaque interactions for disease transmission.', EcoHealth., 14 (4). pp. 704-717.
During wildlife tourism, proximity or actual contact between people and animals may lead to a significant risk of anthropozoonotic disease transmission. In this paper, we use social network analysis, disease simulation modelling and data on animal health and behaviour to investigate such risks at a site in Morocco, where tourists come to see wild Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus). Measures of individual macaques’ network centrality—an index of the strength and distribution of their social relationships and thus potentially their ability to spread disease—did not show clear and consistent relationships with their time spent in close proximity to, or rate of interacting with, tourists. Disease simulation modelling indicated that while higher-ranked animals had a significantly greater ability to spread disease within the group, in absolute terms there was little difference in the size of outbreaks that different individuals were predicted to cause. We observed a high rate of physical contact and close proximity between humans and macaques, including during three periods when the macaques were coughing and sneezing heavily, highlighting the potential risk of disease transmission. We recommend that general disease prevention strategies, such as those aimed at reducing opportunities for contact between tourists and macaques, should be adopted.
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|Publisher Web site:||https://doi.org/10.1007/s10393-017-1284-3|
|Publisher statement:||© The Author(s) 2017. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.|
|Date accepted:||No date available|
|Date deposited:||28 August 2018|
|Date of first online publication:||17 November 2017|
|Date first made open access:||No date available|
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