www.sciencemag.orgSCIENCEVOL 30013 JUNE 20031645CREDITS: (LEFT TO RIGHT) D. DEMELLO/WILDLIFE CONSERVATION SOCIETY; MAP SOURCE: WILDLIFE CONSERVATION SOCIETYOngoing Ebola outbreaks in central Africaare taking a gruesome toll on both humansand great apes. Conservationists, primatolo-gists, and disease experts agree on that much,but in an increasingly heated debate, they arearguing over whether they can or should doanything to limit the spread of the disease. The outbreaks, which have so far killedmore than 150 people and thousands of apes,are spreading ominously toward Congo’sOdzala National Park, which shelters one ofthe world’s largest populations of gorillas andchimpanzees. Some researchers argue thatdrastic measures should be taken to protectthe region’s great apes. Proposals includetransporting hundreds of apes to safe areasand clearing rivers of debris to divide infect-ed from uninfected populations. Anythingthat slows the current outbreak would beworthwhile, says ecologist Peter Walsh ofPrinceton University. “We needto knock this thing down rightnow and give ourselves timefor developing things like vac-cines” that could confer longerlasting protection, he argues.But others say such plansare logistical nightmares thatmight have little or no effecton the spread of the virus. “Wemay just be stuck at the sceneof an accident and there’s noth-ing we can do but watch,” saysLes Real, a disease ecologist atEmory University in Atlanta.
This is the end of the preview.
access the rest of the document.
Gorilla, Hominidae, Chimpanzee, Ape, Odzala National Park