By RHITU CHATTERJEE
In 2003, more than 50 people in the Midwest became ill with the monkey pox virus. The source for the African pathogen – pet prairie dogs that were kept next to infected Gambian pouch rats in a pet store.
In the early 1970s, Arkansas aquaculturists imported the Asian Black carp to control fish parasites in aquaculture ponds. Now these mussel-eating fish are happily lurking deep in the waters of the Mississippi River Basin. Scientists fear that they may be driving precious endangered snails and mussels to extinction.