Snake Fungal Disease Found in Ontario, Canada

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7 Responses

  1. Bill says:

    I was talking to a reptile vet from London last fall, and he thought that snake fungal disease had been in Ontario for some time, specifically in snakes around Rondeau Provincial Park. The good news of this is that the vets are encouraging people working with the snakes to use protocols to avoid spreading snake fungal disease.

    • Lenny Shirose says:

      He is likely correct. We can’t confirm the disease was here before 2015 (unless someone has older samples archived somewhere that are suitable for histology and PCR), but there is evidence that the pathogen, O. ophiodiicola, has been in Ontario for at least a few years. You are absolutely right about the value and importance of biosecurity protocols to prevent spreading the pathogen.

    • C says:

      What is the name of the reptile vet in London? Thanks!

  2. James Kamstra says:

    I found a Queen Snake with strange skin lesions in 2014 and May 2015 in SW Ontario that i suspect was Snake Fungal Disease

    • CWHC says:

      Thank you for sharing this. We are currently trying to determine where this fungus is present and which snake species are at risk, so this sort of information is very useful to us. We have had a few reports of queensnakes in Ontario with lesions that look like SFD, but so far we have received no diagnostic samples so we have been unable to confirm. If you see snakes that look like they may be infected please contact the CWHC and let us know (if you can photograph the snake that would be very helpful). We will pass on the information to the agencies, researchers and organizations in the field collecting samples in Ontario this year; reports like yours can help them target their search more effectively. In Ontario you can reach us by phone Toll-Free: 866.673.4781 or by email at on-nu@cwhc-rcsf.ca.

  3. Paul Prior says:

    I have photos of a milksnake that I found this morning, very lethargic (just out of hibernaculum) and showing a couple of areas of what looked like rotting scales. I’m unfamiliar with “hibernation sores” and would like to send photos to anyone who might help in identification of these lesions.
    Many thanks
    Paul Pior

    • CWHC says:

      Hello Paul,

      My apologies for the delay in response. You can send your photos to our data and communications officer (me) Dale Jefferson at djefferson@cwhc-rcsf.ca . If you could also identify the area where you took the photographs.

      Thanks.

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