Case Description—4 captive adult Micronesian kingfishers (Halcyon cinnamomina cinnamomina) at 3 zoologic institutions were examined routinely or because of dyspnea or lethargy.
Clinical Findings—All birds had marked hepatomegaly. Two birds had dyspnea caused by compression of air sacs by the enlarged liver, and 1 bird had generalized weakness and lethargy. Three birds had distended coelomic cavities, and 3 birds were thin or had lost weight. There were no consistent abnormalities in blood analytes. Results of most ancillary diagnostic tests such as acid-fast staining of cloacal or fecal swab specimens and culture of feces for acid-fast bacteria were negative. Results of examination of hepatic biopsy speci-mens in 2 of 4 birds were suggestive of mycobacteriosis.
Treatment and Outcome—3 birds died or were euthanized soon after diagnosis. One kingfisher was isolated and monitored for 4 months without treatment and died during anesthesia for disease monitoring. Postmortem histologic examination revealed histiocytic hepatitis and acid-fast bacteria in all 4 birds. Bacteriologic culture of liver specimens yielded Mycobacterium simiae complex in all 4 birds.
Clinical Relevance—Infection with M simiae complex should be considered in ill Micronesian kingfishers, and further monitoring is warranted to determine whether this is an emerging pathogen in this species.
Case Description—4 North American porcupines were evaluated because of diarrhea or neutropenia (or both) that developed after treatment with fenbendazole for intestinal parasites.
Clinical Findings—Complete blood cell count abnormalities included severe neutropenia in all affected porcupines and mild anemia in some of them. In 2 porcupines, postmortem findings included bone marrow hypoplasia and intestinal crypt cell necrosis.
Treatment and Outcome—Affected porcupines received supportive care including fluid supplementation and broad-spectrum antimicrobials. The 2 surviving animals recovered after 9 to 33 days of treatment.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Fenbendazole is an anthelminthic that may be used in an extralabel manner for the treatment of intestinal parasitism in wildlife species. The drug inhibits mitosis and can affect rapidly dividing cell lines, such as those in the bone marrow and intestinal crypt mucosa. Fenbendazole may not be an appropriate anthelminthic choice in North American porcupines.
Objective—To determine risk factors for lens luxation and cataracts in captive pinnipeds in the United States and the Bahamas.
Animals—111 pinnipeds (99 California sea lions [Zalophus californianus], 10 harbor seals [Phoca vitulina], and 2 walruses [Odobenus rosmarus]) from 9 facilities.
Procedures—Eyes of each pinniped were examined by a veterinary ophthalmologist for the presence of cataracts or lens luxations and photographed. Information detailing husbandry practices, history, and facilities was collected with a questionnaire, and descriptive statistical analyses were performed for continuous and categorical variables. Odds ratios and associated 95% confidence intervals were estimated from the final model.
Results—Risk factors for lens luxation, cataracts, or both included age ≥ 15 years, history of fighting, history of ocular disease, and insufficient access to shade.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Diseases of the lens commonly affect captive pinnipeds. Access to UV-protective shade, early identification and medical management of ocular diseases, and prevention of fighting can limit the frequency or severity of lens-related disease in this population. An extended life span may result from captivity, but this also allows development of pathological changes associated with aging, including cataracts.