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ways to reduce wildlife-human conflict and avoid wildlife damage.
Wisconsin's rare plants, animals and natural communities.
tips to manage your land for wildlife.
about wildlife health and rehabilitation.
Contact information
For information on wildlife health, contact:
Nancy Businga
Wildlife Disease Specialist
Bureau of Wildlife Management

Wildlife health

The wildlife health program maintains a strong program of wildlife disease monitoring to detect introduction of new diseases, changes in disease patterns and significant impacts on wildlife populations. The wildlife health team's mission is to investigate, manage and educate about disease and other health issues affecting wildlife to help conserve Wisconsin's rich wildlife heritage.

2018 newsletter

Wildlife Health Matters [PDF] is publication of the Wildlife Health Section of the department's Bureau of Wildlife Management and is released annually.

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Newsletter articles

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Past newsletters

Wildlife health sections

Hunting with dogs

Hunters using dogs should be aware of diseases to which they and their dogs can be exposed. The American Veterinary Medical Association has published a general guide about diseases that hunters and their hunting dogs may encounter [PDF].

Report observations of single sick or dead animals of the following:

  • banded loons;
  • peregrine falcons;
  • eagles that have leg bands;
  • trumpeter swans that have leg bands or neck collars;
  • osprey that have leg bands;
  • greater prairie chickens and sharp-tailed grouse;
  • bats: you may also enter reports of sick or dead bats electronically using the Reporting Form found on the Wisconsin Bat Monitoring Program's website;
  • wolves;
  • American marten;
  • raccoons;
  • snakes;
  • bear, especially bear cubs; and
  • elk and deer.

Report sick or dead wildlife

Help monitor the health of Wisconsin's wildlife by reporting your sightings of sick or dead wildlife to your local DNR office. It is not necessary to report wildlife killed along roadways.

If you observe five or more sick or dead birds, or three or more sick or dead mammals in one area please contact your local DNR office to report your observation. Please include the number of animals, the species, such as raccoon or Canada goose, if they were sick or dead, the specific location where you saw them and your contact information in case further information is needed. Besides groups of wildlife the DNR has disease monitoring programs for the specific wildlife species listed to the right.

In Wisconsin, if you find sick or dead birds from May 1 through October 31, contact the dead bird hotline at 1-800-433-1610.

Wildlife rehabilitation

Wildlife rehabilitation is the act of providing temporary care for injured, sick or orphaned wildlife with the goal of releasing them back into the wild. Animals released back into the wild must have the ability to recognize and find appropriate foods, socialize with members of their own species and exhibit normal behaviors such as fear of humans and predator avoidance. Wildlife rehabilitators are often at the forefront of disease detections; they can also identify if wildlife populations are impacted by specific actions, including those that are related to human activities.

Last revised: Wednesday May 29 2019