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Jim Wellehan - University of Florida. Gainesville, FL, US

Jim Wellehan

Professor | University of Florida

Gainesville, FL, UNITED STATES

Jim Wellehan's research focuses on comparative infectious disease, pathogen evolution, molecular diagnostics and pathogen discovery.


Jim Wellehan's research focuses on evolution and ecology of pathogens of nondomestic animals, with an emphasis on molecular diagnostics and pathogen discovery. He can generally be found in the zoo ward fixing owls and tortoises, and prattling on about dinosaurs, microbial ecology, and phylogenetic trees. He is the veterinarian of record for Santa Fe Teaching Zoo and Lubee Bat Conservancy. In addition to clinical work with the Zoological Medicine Service, he is also faculty in the UF Veterinary Clinical Microbiology Laboratory, and co-director of the Zoological Medicine Laboratory.

Areas of Expertise (5)



Wildlife Medicine

Infectious Disease


Articles (3)

A novel herpesvirus detected in 3 species of chelonians

Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation

John M. Winter, et al.


Herpesviruses are found in free-living and captive chelonian populations, often in association with morbidity and mortality. To date, all known chelonian herpesviruses fall within the subfamily Alphaherpesvirinae. We detected a novel herpesvirus in 3 species of chelonians: a captive leopard tortoise in western TX, USA; a steppe tortoise found near Fort Irwin, CA, USA; and 2 free-living, three-toed box turtles found in Forest Park, St. Louis, MO.

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Blood Lead Concentrations of Free-Ranging North Florida Raptors: 2008-17

Journal of Wildlife Diseases

Alyssa G. Palmer, et al.


Whole blood samples for lead analysis were collected from 441 raptors admitted to the Zoological Medicine Service at the University of Florida (US) between 1 January 2008 and 31 December 2017. The species included Bald Eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), Ospreys (Pandion haliaetus), Black (Coragyps atratus) and Turkey (Cathartes aura) Vultures, Barred (Strix varia) and Great Horned (Bubo virginianus) Owls, and Red-tailed (Buteo jamaicensis) and Red-shouldered (Buteo lineatus) Hawks.

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Adenovirus Diversity in Fur Seal and Penguin Colonies of South America

Journal of Wildlife Diseases

Galaxia Cortes-Hinojosa, et al.


Adenoviruses are medium size nonenveloped viruses with a trend of coevolution with their hosts. We surveyed South American fur seals (Arctocephalus australis) and Humboldt penguins (Spheniscus humboldti) for adenoviruses at two sites from 2009 to 2012. Despite the common pattern of host specificity, some of the adenoviruses in our study were present in samples from unexpected host species.

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