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Updated: Jan 10

On Friday February 25th, a VOC-symposium was held in Beringen, organized by Vogelbescherming Vlaanderen for employees of the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centers (VOC).

During this edition, aspects of VOC operation and functioning, with an important focus on infectious diseases, were discussed. The various VOCs play an important role in the disease surveillance of wildlife as they are the 'eyes and ears' in the field. The importance of temporary or permanent monitoring of the health of wild animal species is evident from outbreaks such as bird flu, SARS-CoV-2, the hedgehog disease, African swine fever, etc.

In this regard, Dr. Muriel Vervaeke of the Department of Nature and Forest gave a general state of affairs about the various ongoing surveillance projects and specific points of attention for the VOC operation. While Prof. Dr. An Martel and Naomi Terriere from our WHG center of expertise talked about the ongoing research on diphtheria in hedgehogs due to Corynebacterium ulcerans and parasitism in wildlife.

An extremely interesting meeting that emphasized the importance of collaboration. We thank Vogelbescherming Vlaanderen again for the invitation!

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