Indirect flight of an African bat to Israel: An example of the potential for zoonotic pathogens to move betwen continents

Noam Leader, Ofer Mokady, Yoram Yom-Tov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The transmission of harmful pathogens during commercial air flights is an increasing health concern. A potential, yet relatively overlooked source of zoonotic infectious diseases involves collisions of birds and bats with aircraft and long distance transport of their carcasses. We report a case of aerial transportation of the remains of an African fruit bat over three continents, following a collision with an aircraft, and demonstrate the relative ease with which zoonotic pathogens, such as rabies virus or other viruses associated with bats, may cross national boundaries and continents even. Improper handling and disposal of animal remains by airport personnel, may lead to exposure of both humans and local fauna to exotic pathogens. This in turn may trigger an epidemic with potentially devastating results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)347-350
Number of pages4
JournalVector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Volume6
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2006

Keywords

  • Air collision
  • Bats
  • Long-range transmission
  • Zoonotic pathogens

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