Diseases and parasites of the common wombat Vombatus ursinus in the Healesville area of Victoria

Skerratt, Lee F. (1998) Diseases and parasites of the common wombat Vombatus ursinus in the Healesville area of Victoria. In: Wells, R.T., and Pridmore, P.A., (eds.) Wombats. Surrey Beatty & Sons, Chipping Norton, NSW, Australia, pp. 317-328.

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Thirty-eight wild Common Wombats Vombatus ursinus (Shaw, 1800) obtained as road-kills (twenty-three), found sick in the wild and submitted to Healesville Sanctuary (thirteen) or snare-trapped (two), were examined for diseases and parasites. Apart from three sick juvenile individuals, all wombats were mature. Twice as many males (sixteen) were killed by road vehicles as females (seven). Severe sarcoptic mange occurred in only one of the twenty-five (4%) road-killed or snare-trapped wombats. In contrast, eight of thirteen (62%) sick wombats had severe sarcoptic mange. Three of the remaining five (60%), sick wombats without mange had severe diseases: one had toxoplasmosis, one had asthma with concurrent traumatic lesions and one had diffuse granulomata with concurrent cutaneous myiasis. Numerous Sarcoptic Mange Mites Sarcoptes scabiei were present within the crusts and epidermis of wombats with severe mange. One of nine (11%) wombats affected with sarcoptic mange had concurrent disease, lymphosarcoma with pneumonia due to Pneumocystis carinii. The mean number and range of internal and external parasite species per animal was (7) 5-10. Comparisons between roadkilled and snare-trapped wombats, sick wombats without mange and animals obviously affected with sarcoptic mange revealed no significant differences in the number of parasite species present, however there were differences in the prevalence of some parasite species. The earmite Raillietia australis, the skin mite Acaroptes vombatus and the Common Wombat Tick Aponomma auruginans were less prevalent on wombats with sarcoptic mange probably due to the effects of the Sarcoptlc Mange Mite S. scabiei on wombat skin. The lungworm Marsupostrongylus coulston; was more prevalent in road killed and snare-trapped wombats than sick wombats; however no reason for this was apparent. Most parasites were not associated with severe lesions apart from S. scabiei. Toxoplasma gondii and P. carinii. Lung infection with M. coulstoni was associated with mild interstitial pneumonia. The small intestinal nematode Strongyloides spearei and the large intestinal nematodes Oesophagostomoides giltneri, 0. fongispicularis and Phascofosfrongylus turleyi were found in 37 of the 38 (97%) wombats examined. The next most prevalent parasites were the earmite R. australis and the Common Wombat Tick A. auroginans infecting 66% and 55% of wombats, respectively New host records are reported for the parasites Eimeria ursini and a species of Neotrombicula. Two diseases, lymphosarcoma with concurrent P. carini; pneumonia and cutaneous myiasis, are recorded for the first time in wombats. Toxoplasmosis is reported in a wild wombat for the first time and the gross pathology and histopathology of severe sarcoptic mange due to S. scabiei is described.

Item ID: 28290
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISSN: 978-0-949324-81-8
Keywords: Vombatidae, Vombatus ursinus, parasites, diseases, Sarcoptic mange, Toxoplasmosis, Lymphosarcoma, Eimeria, Neotrombicula, Cutaneous Myiasis, wombat, Pneumocystis
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2013 00:01
FoR Codes: 07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0707 Veterinary Sciences > 070704 Veterinary Epidemiology @ 50%
07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0707 Veterinary Sciences > 070708 Veterinary Parasitology @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9604 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species > 960405 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species at Regional or Larger Scales @ 100%
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