Salamanders Quarantined After...

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Salamanders Quarantined After Arriving In Box From Spain

Josh Crosbie
Josh Crosbie

05:15 25 Jun 2019


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The ISPCA had to quarantine eight fire salamanders and a natterjack toad which were seized by Customs officers.

The animal welfare charity says the rare amphibians could have posed a risk to Ireland's native lizards -- and kept them in isolation for months to make sure they weren't harbouring any diseases.

It's caling for tighter controls on the sale of exotic animals after dealing with incidents involving lizards, toads, tortoises and even snakes in the last year.

ISPCA chief inspector John Dowling says they could have posed a serious risk to Ireland's native species.

Fire salamanders particularly can carry a fungus called B Sal that affects salamanders and newts which we do have here in Ireland. That could be a threat both to captive ones and to native ones, so we had to quarantine these animals for a number of months, kept in a precise temperature, to make sure they didn't have this pathogen."

Poorly advised

He also said people shouldn't buy exotic pets they're not prepared to keep for life.

"We've had a number of incidents involving unusual and exotic species over recent months. Last year with the unusually hot summer we had a number of incidents with snakes wandering around the place," he said.

"It gave us an idea of how many snakes there are out there, perhaps escaped or released intentionally. normally in Irish weather they won't be very active and they won't survive and they won't be seen."

"These animals are frequently allowed to suffer, sometimes unwittingly, by owners who simply do not have the knowledge to care for them properly," he said.

"In some cases they may have been poorly advised when purchasing the animals.  What must also be taken into consideration is that there can be a huge disparity between the size of exotic animals when they are babies and when they are fully mature."


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