Vulture deaths bring rise in rabies

Drop in Indian vulture population leads to increase in rabies cases

source: Paul Brown
Guardian February 4 2003 p13

There has been a sharp increase in feral dog numbers in India, as a result of a sharp drop in the number of vultures. This has led to a rise in cases of rabies. India has the highest number of deaths from rabies of all countries in the world. The vultures have been hit by a virus which has led to the disappearance of some 97% of them. Vultures performed a useful role in scavenging. Butchers, for example, would throw offal outside their shops, and it would be taken by vultures, but this no longer happens because the vultures have gone.