California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Necropsy Training

A necropsy is one method used to determine why an animal dies. It involves the thorough examination of a carcass externally and internally for indications of the causes of death. A necropsy involves careful observations of abnormalities and the retrieval, labeling, and storage of tissue samples. Laboratory tests on preserved tissues allow wildlife disease specialists to evaluate potential causes of wildlife mortality. The Wildlife Investigations Lab staff trains field personnel to perform necropsies on wildlife and to recognize wildlife health problems and to monitor and respond to disease outbreaks.


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