Penn Vet | Fact Sheets
Green Frog

Disease Fact Sheets

These disease fact sheets have been created for use by wildlife biologists, researchers, and the public.

The diseases include those that affect wild animals in the Northeast (e.g. White-nose Syndrome), and some that are shared between wild and domestic animals (e.g. Canine Distemper Virus), and between wildlife and humans (e.g. West Nile Virus).

Characteristics of each disease are described including cause, species affected, geographic distribution, transmission mode, clinical signs, and management. The sheets are intended to be concise and easy to navigate quickly; for those interested in delving into more detail, additional readings are listed.



Chronic Wasting Disease - CWD

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is caused by a prion, which is a protein that can behave like an infectious agent. These infectious proteins cause a degenerative neurological disease of domestic and wild members of the deer family (deer, elk, reindeer, and moose) otherwise known as cervids.


WF-Avian Influenza-canada-geese

Avian Influenza

AI is a global disease with the potential to threaten wildlife, agriculture and human health. In nature Avian influenza (AI), most commonly found in waterfowl and some shorebird species, is caused by various strains of the influenza A virus. These strains are subdivided into two categories based on the severity of disease they cause in poultry.

WF-turkey-Lymphoproliferative Disease

Lymphoproliferative Disease

Lymphoproliferative Disease (LPDV), caused by a retrovirus, results in tumor formation in internal organs and the skin in several species of fowl.

Raven-West Nile Virus-Wildlife Futures

West Nile Virus

West Nile Virus (WNV), of the genus or group, called Flaviviruses is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease that primarily aff­ects birds by attacking their central nervous system. The virus was first isolated from a human patient in the West Nile region of Uganda in 1937.

Reptiles & Amphibians


General Guidelines for the Intake, Quarantine, and Release of Reptiles and Amphibians in Rehabilitation Facilities in Northeastern States, USA

These guidelines are provided to help reduce the risk of pathogen and disease transmission in reptile or amphibian cases brought into rehabilitation facilities.

Multiple Species Groups