In a previous post we have discussed that the world’s gorillas in the past decade has decreased to a third. No, not because of climate change or hunting. The Ebola virus is to be blamed for this. The source of the disease, which is now working its way through the densest population of apes in the world, is tracked — the bats. Hope this discovery will now help check the killing endemics among the chimps. Thanks to the researchers of the International Center for Medical Research (ICMR) in Franceville, Gabon.
Adding to earlier suggestions that they are the likely reservoir, the international team of scientists, led by Dr. Eric M. Leroy, has found evidence of symptomless Ebola virus infection in three species of fruit bats. The scientists from France, South Africa and Thailand found this infection in bats that belong to Gabon and Congo. The bat species are eaten by people in central Africa where Ebola outbreaks have occurred, according to the report in the Dec. 1 issue of the journal Nature. Three trapping expeditions to catch and test 1,030 small animals in areas near where infected gorilla and chimpanzee carcasses were found in outbreaks between 2001 and 2003 had been undertaken. And the result is just before us.