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Dr. Kurt C. VerCauteren

Dr. Kurt C. VerCauteren
Research Wildlife Biologist/Project Leader

Dr. Kurt VerCauteren conducts research to create novel means of managing the diseases and damage of deer and elk to protect American agriculture. His current research involves addressing scientific questions that will lead to a better understanding of diseases of ungulates and to develop means to manage and control them. Many of his efforts are focused at the interface between free-ranging cervids and livestock.

NWRC Research Project: Management of Ungulate Disease and Damage


  • Ph.D., University of Nebraska
  • M.S., University of Nebraska
  • B.S., University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

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Recent Publications

Beasley J.C., T.C. Atwood, M.E. Byrne, K.C. VerCauteren, S.R. Johnson, and O.E. Rhodes Jr. 2015. A behaviorally-explicit approach for delivering vaccine baits to mesopredators to control epizootics in fragmented landscapes. PLoS One 10(1):e0113206.  doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113206.

Slate, D., R. Chipman, T. Algeo, S.  Mills, K. Nelson, C. Croson, E. Dubovi, K. VerCauteren, R.W. Renshaw, T. Atwood, S. Johnson, and C. Rupprecht. 2014.  Safety and immunogenicity of Ontario rabies vaccine bait (ONRAB) in the first US field trial in raccoons (Procyon lotor).  Journal of Wildlife Diseases 50(3):582-595.  doi: 10.7589/2013-08-207.

Berentsen, A.R., S.R. Johnson, and K.C. VerCauteren. 2014. Bait matrix flavor preference by mongoose (Herpestes auropunctatus) in Puerto Rico: Implications for oral rabies vaccination. Caribbean Journal of Science 48(1):52-58.

Johnson, H.E., J.W. Fischer, M. Hammond, P.D. Dorsey, W.D. Walter, C.A. Anderson, K.C. VerCauteren. 2014. Evaluation of techniques to reduce deer and elk damage to agricultural crops. Wildlife Society Bulletin 38(2):358-365. doi: 10.1002/wsb.408.

Berentsen, A.R., S. Bender, P. Bender, D. Bergman, K. Hausig, and K.C. VerCauteren. 2014. Preference among 7 bait flavors delivered to domestic dogs in Arizona: Implications for oral rabies vaccination on the Navajo Nation. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research 9:169-171.  doi: 10.1016/jveb.2014.03.001.

Berentsen, A.R., S.P. Brummer, J.K. Young, and K.C. VerCauteren. 2014. Evaluation of six ONRAB® Ultralite bait flavor matrices delivered to coyotes (Canis latrans): Implications for oral rabies vaccination.  Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research 9:258-261.   doi: 10.1016/j.jveb.2014.05.004.

Anderson, A., S.A. Shwiff, R.B. Chipman, T. Atwood, T. Cozzens, F. Fillo, R. Hale, B. Hatch, J. Maki, O.E. Rhodes, E.E. Rees, C.E. Rupprecht, R. Tinline, K.C. VerCauteren, and D. Slate. Forecasting the spread of raccoon rabies using a purpose-specific group decision-making process.  2014. Human-Wildlife Interactions 8(1):130-138.

Gortazar, C., L.A. Reperant, T. Kuiken, J. de la Fuente, M. Boadella, B. Martínez-Lopez, F. Ruiz-Fons, A. Estrada-Peña, C. Drosten, G. Medley, R. Ostfeld, T. Peterson, K. VerCauteren, C. Menge, M. Artois, C. Schultsz, R. Delahay, J. Serra-Cobo, R. Poulin, F. Keck, A.A. Aguirre, H. Henttonen, A.P. Dobson, S. Kutz, J. Lubroth, A. Mysterud. 2014. Crossing the interspecies barrier: Opening the door to zoonotic pathogens. PLoS Pathogens, 10(6), art. no. e1004129. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004129.

Lavelle, M.J., J.W. Fischer, G.E. Phillips, A.M. Hildreth, T.A. Campbell, D.G. Hewitt, S.E. Hygnstrom, and K.C. VerCauteren. Assessing risk of disease transmission: Direct implications for an indirect science. Bioscience 64(6):524-530. doi: 10.1093/biosci/biu055.

Walter, W.D., R. Smith, M. Vanderklok, and K.C. VerCauteren. 2014. Linking bovine tuberculosis on cattle farms to white-tailed deer and environmental variables using Bayesian hierarchical analysis. PLoS One 9(3): e90925. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0090925.

Ellis, C.K., R.S. Stahl, P. Nol, W.R. Waters, M.V. Palmer, J.C. Rhyan, K.C. VerCauteren, M.McCollum, M.D. Salman. 2014.A pilot study exploring the use of breath analysis to differentiate healthy cattle from cattle experimentally infected with Mycobacterium bovis. PloS One 9(2): e89280. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0089280.

Fischer, J.W., T.A. Nichols, G.E. Phillips, and K.C. VerCauteren. 2013. Procedures for identifying infectious prions after passage through the digestive system of an avian species. Journal of Visualized Experiments 81: e50853, doi:10.3791/50853.

Fischer, J.W., G.E. Phillips, T.A. Nichols, and K.C. Vercauteren. 2013. Could avian scavengers translocate infectious prions to disease-free areas initiating new foci of chronic wasting disease? Prion 7(4): 263-266. doi:10.4161/pri.25621.

VerCauteren, K.C., M. Lavelle, and T.W. Seamans.  2013. Excluding mammals from airports. Pages 49-59 in T.L. DeVault, B.F. Blackwell, and J.L. Belant, editors. Wildlife in Airport Environments: Preventing Animal-Aircraft Collisions through Science-Based Management. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Maryland, in association with The Wildlife Society.

Franklin A.B., K.C. VerCauteren, H. Maguire, M.K. Cichon, J.W. Fischer, M.J. Lavelle, A. Powell, J.J. Root, E. Scallan. 2013. Wild Ungulates as Disseminators of Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli in Urban Areas. PLoS ONE 8(12):e81512 doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0081512.

Barasona, J.A., K.C. VerCauteren, N. Saklou, C. Gortazar, and J. Vicente. 2013. Effectiveness of cattle operated bump gates and exclusion fences in preventing ungulate multi-host sanitary interaction. Preventive Veterinary Medicine 111: 42-50. doi 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2013.02.009.

Dirsmith, K., K. VanDalen, T. Fry, B. Charles, K. VerCauteren, and C. Duncan. 2013. Leptospirosis in Fox Squirrels (Sciurus niger) of Larimer County, Colorado, USA. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 49(3): 641-645. doi: 10.7589/2012-10-265.

Drolet, B.S., L.M. Reister, T.D. Rigg, P. Nol, B.K. Podell, J.O. Mecham, K.D. VerCauteren, P.A. vanRijn, W.C. Wilson, and R.A. Bowen. 2013. Experimental infection of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) with Northern European bluetongue virus serotype 8. Veterinary Microbiology 166: 347-355. doi: 10.1016/jvetmic.2013.05.027.

Ellison, J. A., S. R. Johnson, N. Kuzmina, A. Gilbert, W. C. Carson, K. C. Vercauteren, and C. E. Rupprecht. 2013. Multidisciplinary Approach to Epizootiology and Pathogenesis of Bat Rabies Viruses in the United States. Zoonoses and Public Health 60:46-57.

Fry, T.L., K.K. VanDalen, S.A. Shriner, S.M. Moore, C.A. Hanlon, and K.C. VerCauteren. 2013. Humoral immune response to oral rabies vaccination in raccoon kits: Problems and implications. Vaccine 31: 2811-2815. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.04.016.

Fry, T.L., K.K. VanDalen, C. Duncan, and K. Vercauteren. 2013. The safety of ONRAB® in select non-target wildlife. Vaccine 31: 3839-3842. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.06.069.

Hefley, T.J., D.E. Hygnstrom, J.M. Gilsdorf, G.M. Clements, A.J. Tyre, D.M. Baasch, K.C. VerCauteren. 2013. Effects of deer density and land use on mass of white-tailed deer. Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management 4(1): 20-32. doi 10.3996/022012-JFWM-015.

Hildreth, A.M., S.E. Hygnstrom, K.C. Vercauteren. 2013. Deer-activated bioacoustic frightening device deters white-tailed deer. Human-Wildlife Interactions 7(1): 107-113.

Nichols T.A., T.R. Spraker, T.D. Rigg, C. Meyerett-Reid, C.Hoover, B. Michel, J. Bian, E. Hoover, T. Gidlewski, A. Balachandran, K. O'Rourke, G.C. Telling, R. Bowen, M.D. Zabel, and K.C.VerCauteren. 2013. Intranasal inoculation of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) with lyophilized Chronic Wasting Disease prion particulate complexed to montmorillonite clay. PLoS ONE 8(5): e62455. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0062455

Pilon, J.L., J.C. Rhyan, L.L. Wolfe, T.R. Davis, M.P. McCollum, K.I. O'Rourke, T. R. Spraker, K.C. VerCauteren, M. W. Miller, T. Gidlewski, T.A. Nichols, L.A. Miller, and P. Nol. 2013.  Immunization with a synthetic peptide vaccine fails to protect mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) from chronic wasting disease. J Wildl Dis. 49(3):694-8.

Walter, W.D., J.W. Fischer, C.W. Anderson, D.R. Marks, T. DeLiberto, W. Robbe-Austerman, K.C. VerCauteren. 2013. Surveillance and movements of Virginia opossum (Didelphis virginiana) in the bovine tuberculosis region of Michigan. Epidemiology and Infection 141: 1498-1503. doi: 10.1017/S0950268813000629.

Wyckoff, A. C., K. L. Lockwood, C. Meyerett-Reid, B. A. Michel, H. Bender, K. C. VerCauteren, and M. D. Zabel. 2013. Estimating prion adsorption capacity of soil by bioassay of subtracted infectivity from complex solutions (BASICS). PloS one 8. 10.1371/journal.pone.0058630


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