Serum antibody prevalence of infectious canine hepatitis virus was 12% (90 of 725) for grizzly bears (Vrsus arctos) from Alaska (USA) during the period 1973 to 1987. Prevalence was highest on Kodiak Island at 29% (37 of 127). Prevalence of exposure at individual collection areas did not change significantly over time. There were no significant sex-specific differences in prevalence. Prevalence was directly related to age, but it was 0% for bears <2-yr-old. Young bears which are exposed to the virus may develop clinical disease and die as a result of the infection. This disease may be a factor affecting grizzly bear population dynamics.
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Vol. 25 • No. 4