With the lingering threat of diseases such as Ranavirus, Chytrid Fungus and Ophidiomycosis, it is of utmost priority to ensure no foreign pathogens are exchanged between our facility, others and wild populations. Luckily, Celtic Reptile & Amphibian uses the latest research by leading scientists to guide our protocols. Below we have outlined our biosecurity programme.
Minimising contamination risk
Firstly, we disinfect all surfaces with either F10 veterinary disinfectant or Virkon to destroy any potentially harmful microbes. This includes all decor and enclosures such as logs, rocks and bark by submerging it in the solution and then leaving it exposed to the sun. We find that more meticulous cleaning with disinfectant is needed when cleaning food and water bowls. All food preparation is performed on a clean surface, following basic hygiene to prevent infection via food.
All visitors to any of our sites are instructed to wash their hands and de-contaminate footwear (using a disinfectant foot dip) upon both entry and exit from Celtic Reptile & Amphibian. Also, visitors are asked if they have had any prior contact with a reptile or amphibian recently. Gloves are always worn when handling animals both by our staff and keepers as well as visitors. Animals are never kept in transport containers together, if they do not live with each other permanently.
Treatment and quarantine
Luckily, we have constructed a quarantine unit, separate from all of the other stock. This is where we treat animals, ensure new arrivals from other collections are healthy and house potentially infected animals until treated. Records are always kept of animals whom arrive and are discharged or decease.
On the display of adverse symptoms, animals are separated from their counterparts, and moved to our separate quarantine unit. This is an area with open air enclosures (maximal airflow) far away from the facility. Here, they are clinically diagnosed and treated. The animals are discharged 1 month after the last onset of symptoms, to wholly reduce the likely hood that they could become a vector for the animals which share their enclosure.