CCWHC Workshop for Wildlife Professionals

On February 23-24, 2010 the CCWHC hosted a two-day workshop for wildlife health professionals. The purpose of the workshop was to bring together individuals active in the fields of wildlife health and disease management nationally and engage them in discussions surrounding two broad themes; animal welfare issues in wildlife management, research and harvest and the One World One Health concept. In addition, the workshop was designed to elicit feedback and comments pertaining to the CCWHC program.

The workshop was held at Carleton University, Ottawa, ON and facilities were made available with the assistance of Environment Canada and the National Wildlife Research Centre. The workshop attracted 70 participants from across Canada as well as representatives from the United States. Day One was comprised of presentations and discussions designed to advance the concept of wildlife welfare and to identify approaches to integrate wildlife welfare considerations into the design and implementation of management, research and harvest activities while ensuring that these activities can continue efficiently in the long term. A report on the meeting is being prepared and will include the questions that were raised during the workshop. It is hoped that the document will serve as an “animal welfare benchmark” for agencies and organizations, and as a work in progress upon which to develop future work on wildlife welfare in Canada and abroad. The survey document is available for download from the CCWHC website.

The morning of day two was presented in conjunction with the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), and was a discussion pertaining to the wildlife aspects of the “One World One Health” (OWOH). The Public Health Agency is formulating a substantial policy initiative around the OWOH concept and this session was organized to capture input from Canada’s wildlife health professionals gathered at the workshop. The OWOH concept proposes an international and interdisciplinary approach to disease surveillance, monitoring, prevention, control and mitigation that incorporates environmental conservation, and recognizes linkages among human, animal and ecosystem health. Expert advice and engagement of professionals in all three broad categories of health is required for its success.

The third component of the workshop and the subject of the afternoon of day two consisted of a consultative process to engage participants in providing immediate input to the CCWHC as it formulates its work agenda for the coming year and beyond. This feedback will assist the CCWHC to plan its activities in order to support the needs of its partner agencies over time.

By: Patrick Zimmer, CCWHC – Headquarters Office

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