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On Mar 15, 1999 ZetaTalk stated in the 1999 Predictions increased illness would be experienced in animal populations as the 12th Planet approached. On Jan 20, 2000 it was reported that infectious diseases were on the increase worldwide among wildlife.

Infectious disease on the rise among wildlife
Associated Press, Jan 20, 2000

Crowded living conditions, moving to new places and eating unusual foods can spread disease - among wild animals, too. A new study warns that when it comes to the globalization of the planet, animals face a lot of the same hazards as people, including so-called emerging infectious diseases. "We call it pathogen pollution," said Peter Daszak of the University of Georgia, lead author of a paper appearing in today's edition of the journal Science. These diseases can cause local extinctions among wild animals and in some cases could even lead to total extinction of a species, he said. And diseases of wildlife not only threaten the future of the animals, but also may form a reservoir of germs that could harm people and domestic animals, his team warns. Indeed, this type of transmission may have been a factor in the emergence of the virus that causes AIDS as well as the newer Marburg and Ebola viruses, the paper notes.

The international transport of livestock and current agricultural practice have helped spread rinderpest in Africa and mad cow disease in Europe, for example. And even the seemingly most innocent act can pose problems. "Recent analysis suggests that 15,000 tons of peanuts are fed annually to United Kingdom garden birds. This form of provisioning has led to the emergence of infection by salmonella and E coli in Britain ... because of the high density and diversity of birds at feeding stations," the scientists reported. Similar reports have occurred in the United States. Bringing animals together in zoos and wild animal parks in an effort to conserve them may also cause problems, the study notes. For example, researchers have determined that a type of herpes virus that is harmless to African elephants can be fatal to their Asian cousins. And zoo animals in the United Kingdom have been exposed to food contaminated with the agent that causes mad cow disease. They reported that that exposure to the agent, called BSE, has been found in 58 zoo animals of 17 species.

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