National Wildlife Health Center — Madison, Wisconsin

Science Center Objects

About the Laboratory

The National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC) provides the services of board-certified veterinary pathologists specializing in gross and microscopic assessment of animal tissues to help understand the impacts of contaminants on wildlife species. The NWHC also offers real-time reporting of wildlife mortality events and maintains an extensive database of diagnostic and epidemiological information on wildlife health dating from the 1970's.

Digestive gland from a freshwater snail (Lymnaea stagnalis)

Digestive gland from a freshwater snail (Lymnaea stagnalis)

(Credit: Julia Lankton, USGS. Public domain.)

 

Key Analytical Capabilities

  • Diagnostic and research necropsy capability
  • Light microscopy
  • Special microscopy techniques (for example immunohistochemistry)
  • Digital image analysis
  • Pathology consultation and interpretation
  • Wildlife epidemiology expertise
A U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) wildlife pathologist examines a Cassin's auklet (Ptychoramphus aleuticus) in the necropsy lab

A U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) wildlife pathologist examines a Cassin's auklet (Ptychoramphus aleuticus) in the necropsy laboratory at the USGS NWHC.

(Public domain.)

Liver vacuoles in a zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) treated with the neonicotinoid clothianidin

Liver vacuoles in a zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) treated with the neonicotinoid clothianidin.

(Credit: Julia Lankton, USGS. Public domain.)

 

Key Instrumentation

  • 5300 square foot biosafety level 3 (BSL-3) necropsy facility
  • BSL-3 animal research facilities
  • State-of-the-art light microscopes and digital image software
A multi-headed teaching microscope lets wildlife pathologists view the same histopathology slides

A multi-headed teaching microscope lets wildlife pathologists view the same histopathology slides.

(Public domain.)