Animal health

Animal health and survival
Saving kiwi and other animals from the brink of extinction is just one part of what Kerri Morgan does at Wildbase. If there's an oil spill anywhere on the planet, it is likely that Kerri will be leading New Zealand’s world expert oiled wildlife response team.

Kerri Morgan, veterinary scientist

Veterinary science, research and training have been at the forefront of Massey’s academic activity for nearly 50 years. Through this time we’ve produced world-class veterinary scientists to cater for the country’s diverse animal health needs, upon which our dairy, wool and meat industries depend.

Given the challenges to animal health in biosecurity and the threat of native species extinction, it is imperative that scientists working in this field continue to build on and add value to the knowledge, skills and expertise Massey delivers.

Take the kiwi—our national symbol—unique to this land and increasingly at risk of disappearing. Massey’s Wildbase is dedicated to advancing knowledge and understanding of numerous diseases affecting our nation’s unique indigenous wildlife. Deploying knowledge and skills across a diverse array of scenarios in the animal world is one of the many ways Massey is investing in New Zealand’s future. We are working to preserve our natural heritage and teaching others how to continue this work for generations to come.

Vulnerable creatures are often the silent victims of environmental problems, such as oil spills. Specialists at the Oiled Wildlife Response Unit have been involved in oil spill responses around the world, from Stewart Island to Spain.

Cows and sheep, by comparison, are a common presence across the landscape as valuable sources of milk, meat and wool for earning export dollars. The health and preservation of animals in both agricultural and wilderness settings is vital to our nation’s economic prosperity and heritage.

Massey’s virtual veterinary clinic is a critical, innovative solution in which students are presented with virtual, scenario-based animals through which they develop diagnostic treatment and care skills. This encourages a more practical learning experience in advance of working with real animals.

The Veterinary Emergency Response Team, the first of its kind in Australasia, is a another example of Massey’s willingness to step up to even newer challenges. Based at the School of Veterinary Science and associated with the World Society for the Protection of Animals disaster management division, its volunteer team headed for Christchurch in the aftermath of the deadly quake. They were equipped to perform in-field veterinary treatment, disaster assessment and support rescue efforts.