Nigeria’s Forest Animals Are Not Ebola Endangered – Expert



A veterinary surgeon with the Osun State ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Dr Taiwo Aikulola, has stated that forest animals in Nigeria, especially those within the south-west, are free from the Ebola virus, because the virus so far, has been transferred from human to human.
Dr Aikulola made this disclosure during an interactive session at the Department of Forest Resources Management, Osun State Ministry of Environment and Sanitation, Osogbo.
According to him, the Ebola virus, which was first noticed near River Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1976, is acquired by forest animals like chimpanzees, apes and other primates before being transferred to humans.
He disclosed that although the Ebola Virus is not food or fibre-borne, it is transferred through saliva deposited on the remnants of the fruits eaten by bats, to chimpanzees or apes, who then become its agent.
The veterinary surgeon confirmed that although fruit bats, which themselves act as reservoirs/hosts for the virus are not affected by it. The virus can stay in forest animals and other agents for eighteen days before becoming endangered by it.
Dr Aikulola also disclosed that the fatality rate ranges between 50 to 65 percent and depends on an individual’s or group’s immunity to the virus.
While shedding light on the discussion, the head of department of Forest Resources Management, Prince Oladapo Abolarin stated that the interactive session was held to sensitise forest officers and wildlife managers who will then pass the message to the public.
Prince Abolarin maintained that consumption of protein-rich food, maintenance of clean environments as well as personal hygiene are known effective ways to prevent the spread of Ebola-Virus disease.

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