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Wildlife health as a science and practice emerged and grew before the extinction crisis, global pandemics and climate change became prominent and acute threats. The focus of the general wildlife health discourse is too often limited to identifying and managing emerging risks, rather than building resilience in advance of harms. The One Health movement has created a disproportional interest in infectious diseases that will have public health implications. The pressures on wildlife health occurring in the Anthropocene clearly show that veterinary medicine and biomedical sciences explain a relatively small part of a wildlife population’s health. Most often society wishes us to remedy the social illnesses related to a wildlife disease rather than focus only on managing their proximate causes. The practice of wildlife health will need to evolve it is wishes to retain its social relevance in the Anthropocene. This talk will explore emerging perspectives of wildlife health as a cumulative effect of individual, environmental, and social pressures and capacities that allow animals to cope with a dynamic and complex environment. The presentation argues for the creation of a continuum of wildlife care that not only detects, responds to and prevents harms from disease but also fosters conditions conducive to health by addressing underlying social, individual and environmental determinants that constrain animals’ abilities to achieve and sustain health gains.
Musculoskeletal issues of varying aetiology are a common form of pathology in zoo species, and standard protocols are used to treat this in zoos. Some interventions are purely pharmaceutical and surgical. Is this enough, and if rehabilitation techniques are used, can those from humans and domestic species be applied safely and effectively to exotic species? Further, are our standard approaches to zoo animal management and keeping causing some musculoskeletal pathology?
This talk will cover the management of musculoskeletal and neurological health in daily husbandry routines, as well as rehabilitative approaches for lameness and associated pathology. Additionally, and using evidence from zoos and from the literature, it outlines how rehabilitation/physiotherapy modalities could be altered to better fit the management of an exotic species, and how traditional approaches may be to the animal’s detriment.
– What management changes can be made to maintain health and recovery, in addition to (?) current practices, and how might they predispose animals to MSK pathology (examples of current enclosures for evaluation)?
– How current rehabilitation might be altered for use with exotic species (examples from the literature)?
This presentation is a viewpoint of a veterinarian working as part of a large commercial New Zealand deer farm. Points covered will include handling systems, disease monitoring and interventions, breeding programmes and technologies, and the use of data to influence decision making and business success. Many valuable lessons can be learned from the progressive NZ deer industry, some aspects of which are transferable to deer farming in the UK.
A rigid endoscope is a versatile tool for diagnostic and treatment in rabbit medicine. Stomatoscopy, otoscopy, cystoscopy, thoracoscopy, and even laparoscopy can be performed in pet rabbits, allowing clear and direct visualization of the internal organs and magnifying the images.
It can be applied to study and cure various systems (respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive), to collect samples for microbiology, cytology, or histopathology, and to explain better to the rabbit’s owner the diagnosis. Indeed, it is an excellent tool for the veterinarian and the communication and understanding with clients, by showing pictures and videos obtained by the endoscope.
The 2.7 mm endoscope, 18 cm long, with a 30° degree angle is the most widespread endoscope in exotic animal medicine.
The 30° degree angle can be used in stomatoscopy of rabbits often presented with hypersalivation: when the physical examination of the awaken rabbit does not give enough information, the animal can be sedated to better visualize teeth and oral soft tissues.
Not only dental diseases but hypersalivation can also be caused by a foreign body stuck between two teeth and by a neoplastic lesion. Without the use of the endoscope, these conditions can be missed.
The endoscope can assist simple procedures (resection and filing the teeth) and more complex surgeries (as the extraction of a molar tooth), helping the comprehension of the patient’s anatomy and if other diseases are present.
So you think you know what being a vet it is? Is it luck or our degree that opens doors? Are we defined by our profession? In this session we will explore the opportunities our degree brings us, as well as challenge the perception of what it means to be a vet
Suspected to have gone extinct in the 1960s, the pygmy hog (Porcula salvania) was ‘rediscovered’ in 1971 in the State of Assam in the north eastern region of India. Originally a rare inhabitant of the tall wet grasslands in the plains just south of the Himalayas, the pygmy hog was reduced worldwide by the 1990s to a single, declining, wild population, with no captive specimens. Unlike the megafauna found within the Wildlife Protected Areas of that region, it a grassland specialist with exacting requirements. Grassland habitat degradation is believed to have driven the species close to extinction.
A species recovery plan was formulated in 1996 to bring some specimens into captivity as an assurance breeding group, but with longer-term plans to reintroduce pygmy hogs to the wild.
The project has now released 130 pygmy hogs into the wild in four locations. These sites have been previously assessed and managed according to the needs of our species. This has additionally benefitted other endangered species, including the Bengal florican (Houbaropsis bengalensis) and the hispid hare (Caprolagus hispidus).
The biosecurity of our single-species breeding and release centres has always been a priority. With the arrival, in early 2020, of African Swine Fever (ASF) into Assam an urgent reappraisal of disease risk and the actions required to bring that risk back to as close as possible to zero was carried out.
Soon after ASF was found in Assam there was the emergence of the virus SARS-CoV-2 and subsequent global pandemic of Covid-19. India has since become one of the most severely-affected countries worldwide.
Thus, the project in 2020 has had to deal with two new diseases, both potentially fatal, with the control of each requiring state intervention and the imposition of regulations.
To add to the project’s challenges, 2020 has had one of the most severe monsoon seasons of recent years and overall security at the centres has also become an issue.
Reporting the results of clinical research is a key step in knowledge creation. Inadequate reporting greatly limits the ability of readers to clearly evaluate the relevance and reliability of the results of clinical studies. Such reporting deficiencies include omission of key information (ie, selective reporting), incorrect study design, and misinterpretation of results. In this presentation we will discuss current standards on how to properly report scientific articles, with a special focus on articles on clinical research in exotic animals. Improving reporting of scientific articles will help future readers to understand and critically appraise what actually was done in the study.
Australian marsupials are popular additions to many zoos and wildlife parks due to their unique characteristics. This presentation focuses on medicine of large and small macropods and the koala. It reviews anatomy and physiology peculiar to these animals that must be considered in order to provide optimal health care. Options for physical and chemical restraint, and management during hospitalisation and transport are presented. Diagnosis and treatment of selected common diseases of captive macropods and koalas are described, and preventative health measures discussed.