Landscape structure and ecology influence the spread of a bat fungal disease
- Permanent Link:
- Landscape structure and ecology influence the spread of a bat fungal disease
- Series Title:
- Functional Ecology
- Lilley,Thomas M.
- Publication Date:
- Subjects / Keywords:
- Chiroptera ( local )
Dispersal ( local )
Landscape Structure ( local )
Opportunistic Pathogen ( local )
Outsideâ€Host Competition ( local )
Whiteâ€Nose Syndrome ( local )
Wns ( local )
- serial ( sobekcm )
- Whiteâ€nose syndrome (WNS), affecting multiple North American bat species during the hibernation period, is a highly pathogenic disease caused by the psychrophilic fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd). Because the fungal pathogen persists in the hibernation site environment independently of the hosts, previous theory on spatial disease dynamics cannot predict WNS epidemics. However, the ability to understand factors contributing to the spread of whiteâ€nose syndrome (WNS) in North America is crucial to the management of infected and susceptible bat populations as well as the conservation of threatened and endangered bat species.
Utilizing recent theory on environmental opportunistic pathogens, we modelled the effect of (a) landscape clustering, (b) environmental conditions in hibernacula and (c) microbial competition on the spread of WNS. We used available, already published data to construct and parameterize our model, which takes into account the spatial distribution of hibernation sites, temperature conditions in both the outside ambient and hibernation site environment, bat population dynamics, dispersal and infection by the pathogen, which also has its hostâ€independent dynamics with the environment. We also consider the effect of outsideâ€host competition between the pathogen and other microâ€organisms on spatial disease dynamics.
Our model suggests that pathogen loads accumulate in poorly connected hibernacula at short host dispersal, which can help found the epidemic. In contrast, invasion of the landscape is most successful at long host dispersal distances, with homogenous hibernation site distribution and heterogeneous betweenâ€hibernation site temperatures. Also, increasing the mean temperature across hibernacula increases fungal growth rate, leading to higher disease prevalence and faster invasion rate. Increasing spatial heterogeneity in hibernaculum temperatures results in the formation of disease hotspots in warmer hibernacula, facilitating more effective spread of the disease in the landscape. Coldâ€
- Original Version:
- Functional Ecology, Vol. 32, no. 11 (2018-06-25).
- Source Institution:
- University of South Florida Library
- Holding Location:
- University of South Florida
- Rights Management:
- This item is licensed with the Creative Commons Attribution License. This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon this work, even commercially, as long as they credit the author for the original creation.
- Resource Identifier:
- K26-00029 ( USFLDC: LOCAL DOI )
k26.29 ( USFLDC: LOCAL Handle )
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