Home / Science & Research / Supported Projects Past and Present / Ecological determinants of Lyme borreliosis risk Ecological determinants of Lyme borreliosis risk in the South Downs National Park and the potential for one-health based interventionsJ.Middleton, University of Brighton Photo by: Neil MorrellFIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE STUDY Lyme borreliosis (LB) is tick-borne and can cause serious disease with the UK annual diagnoses trebling over the last two decades (Marcu et 01., 2013; Dillon et 01.,2010). Those working in farmland/forestry or having contact with animals (including deer) in high hazard areas are at greatest risk (HSE, 2010). Deer have key roles in most, but not all, UK LB disease systems (Medlock et 01.,2013; Gilbert et 01.,2012; Ogden et 01., 1997). However they are non-competent hosts for the pathogen itself, and small mammals or birds are usually required as disease reservoirs (Franke et al.,2013). Greater knowledge of these disease systems and their habitat determinants would be valuable, not least as interventions based on simplistic models that blame LB primarily on deer may undermine broader attempts to enhance public and ecosystem health, or even increase local LB hazard (Dobson, 2014; Li et 01.,2014; Ostfeld, 2011).The aim of this research is to build an evidence based picture of the ecological determinants of Lyme borreliosis risk in the South Downs National Park (SDNP) and to suggest potential one-health based interventions.The study will map LB vector and pathogen distribution across the SDNP. If Borrelia miyamotoi is detected it will examine the potential dilution effect of deer on this emerging disease hazard. It will determine host community composition for LB pathogens and their vectors. It will review one-health interventions to decrease LB risk and suggest actions within the SDNP and where reasonable more generally.The study will provide a mapped assessment of LB risk and causal factors and support development of policies that avoid or minimise conflicts between public and ecosystem health (Medlock and Jameson,2010). Given LBs widespread distribution, knowledge of its ecological determinants in the SDNP will be of value beyond the Park. FURTHER READING Surveillance for Coronaviruses in Wildlife The British Deer Society is asking its members and supporters to assist with a surveillance study looking into coronaviruses in wildlife. This study aims to support the development of diagnostic tests, aid future surveillance, and improve preparedness for future coronavirus outbreaks. BDS CEO Goes Live On TalkTV To Promote Fact-led Deer Management David Mcauley, British Deer Society (BDS) CEO went live on TalkTV and Radio at the weekend to promote the importance of having more fact-led approaches in deer management, less sensationalism in the media around total UK deer numbers and to speak up for deer welfare. Deer Management in the UK: Sustainability Verses Eradication Recently, we received a heartfelt letter from a dedicated member of the British Deer Society (BDS), a seasoned deer stalker with 30 years of experience who was dismayed by the indiscriminate and unsustainable shooting of roe deer around his management areas. His words shed light on the evolving challenges faced by conscientious deer managers who prioritise legal and humane practices in an environment where not all shooters share the same values.