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RE: thoughts on the issue...

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Posted by: nybuckeye at Fri Jan 29 19:39:15 2010  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by nybuckeye ]  
   

"Heartwater disease" became a major problem many years ago when large quantities of Leapord tortoises were being imported. Amblyomma (a.k.a the "pretty tick" was the responsible vector for this bacteria (Ehrlichea ruminantium). Major issue with this was that Heartwater disease is foreign to the U.S. and is a big deal in the economics of agriculture. It causes some pretty terrible things to cattle, and other ruminants.

I had no idea that they were investigating tortoise keepers in Florida, its pretty ridiculous. I am finishing up my 3rd year of veterinary school, and will be doing a year of clinical rotations at UF starting in May. I will be sure to ask about the legalities involved. What's funny about this is that on my board exam to practice veterinary medicine in the U.S. that I took last week had a question about this exact issue. I was so excited when I read the question (finally something I know the answer too). The question asked about the most common way it is imported into the US, and guess what, wild tortoises was not a choice.

These ticks that carry the rickettsial bacteria can be brought in on people, migratory birds (major source), and many other wild ruminants. The one or two shipments of leopard tortoise that were imported were the cause of your inconvenience. How long ago did this inspection occur?

The Veterinary community is also concerned about these ridiculous "threats" to take our animals, and our clients animals away. We are doing whatever we can to help battle this issue.

Josh


   

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