Mange is a skin disease caused by mites that parasitize an animal’s skin, often yielding inflamed immune responses and hair loss. At a population level, mange may reduce survival and cause population declines. Many forms of mange can be treated quite effectively when an animal is in hand; however, this is not often feasible for many free-ranging wildlife populations. Some animals, particularly territorial carnivores, will rub or roll to scent mark and transmit information about their presence to other individuals. We posited that rub stations comprised, in part, of anthelmintic medication and foreign scents that induce rubbing could be used to remotely treat mange in the wild. We deployed 39 rub stations containing lure and dye in Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, Southern California, USA, October–November 2022. Carnivores rubbed or rolled at >97% of rub stations, with coyotes (Canis latrans), gray foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus), and bobcats (Lynx rufus) being the most abundant species. Time to first rub or roll was generally <1 wk. Several sympatric species (e.g., mule deer, Odocoileus hemionus) were detected at rub stations but did not rub. Our pilot test provides strong evidence that treating mange in wild carnivores may be possible using the remote medicinal rub stations we describe. Future efforts to add medicine to rub stations and monitor for a change in mange prevalence are a logical next step.

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