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Veterinarian Practice & General Health Issues Anything to do with veterinarians, health issues, pathogens, hygiene, or sanitation.

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Old 04-30-2017, 01:32 PM   #21
Originally Posted by thamnophis123 View Post
Also - why did my attempt to update this situation on the Board get blocked?
Probably because your other thread is still active and people have been asking for updates. Once you have all of the test and necropsy results in-hand you can attach it there.

Also, from my understanding of the timeline in the SFD Facebook forum, the snake you had that recently succumbed to the disease had been outwardly healthy for quite a while. If so then people who purchase WC critters should consider extending quarantine past the typical 90 days, maybe even for a year, since the disease can be present without the snake showing symptoms for several months.
Old 04-30-2017, 01:37 PM   #22
Thanks - I just heard my recent post is "under review". I'll see if I can find the original thread. Why didnt they just say that I wonder. Ah well.
Old 07-13-2018, 06:35 PM   #23
Georgia DNR Bulletin 07/13/18:


Eastern indigo snakes are already rare. They’re listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

But an indigo with a deadly snake disease that is restored to health and returned to the wild? That reaches beyond rare to amazing.

In March, DNR and University of Georgia staff found a sick female indigo at a south Georgia wildlife management area. One of North America’s largest native snakes, indigos as adults are big, strong and glossy black. But this snake was thin, flecked with crusting, brown scales, and too weak to try to escape.

The indigo was taken to the Jekyll Island Authority’s Georgia Sea Turtle Center. Dr. Terry Norton, center director, has done extensive work with indigos. The diagnosis wasn’t a shock: snake fungal disease. Dubbed SFD, the disease is a severe dermatitis that causes scabs, crusty scales, abnormal molting and other skin inflammation.

SFD was first reported in a captive black rat snake from Sparta in 2006. It has since been documented in more than a dozen species and a growing number of wild snakes in the eastern U.S. and Midwest, including in Georgia (“Disease reported in more snakes,” Oct. 8, 2015). The associated fungus, Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola, has been confirmed in other indigos in the state, the first dating to 2004.

The jury is out on the impact of the disease, and whether SFD is spreading or simply taking advantage of snakes stressed by changes such as habitat loss. Yet for snakes, the disease is clearly a killer. And treating it is a challenge.

At the Sea Turtle Center, the ailing indigo was bathed with a diluted antiseptic, swathed in antibiotic cream and misted with an antifungal drug in a process called nebulization. The latter is a new therapy developed by the University of Illinois’ Dr. Matt Allender with collaboration by the center, Norton wrote.

“Each time the snake shed, there was some improvement,” Norton added.

At first, the patient wouldn’t eat. Then came its first meal – a fresh, road-killed corn snake, and a welcomed sign.

When the indigo had fully recovered, the Sea Turtle Center released it at the WMA where it was found.

A rare snake had received a rare second chance at life.


For nearly two years, The Orianne Society has been sampling indigos across south Georgia for Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola, the fungus associated with SFD. The federally funded project is documenting the prevalence of the disease in indigos.
Old 07-13-2018, 09:37 PM   #24
There may be some important details missing here. As far as I know, we have no way to tell if nebulizer treatments actually cure the disease. We know the treatments deliver the medication systemically, but don't know the efficacy of the drug on the disease. We also know that infected snakes can "recover" ie loosing all external signs of the disease, but succumb to the internal effects weeks or months later.

So, hoping I'm wrong here, the release of a "cured" snake may have been ill advised.

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