Snuffler – adult male
admitted 21 June 2012
pre-release 14 July 2012
released in Southwell 17 July 2012
weight on admission 863g
weight at pre-release 1006g
Snuffler was admitted after the finder noticed he was making a lot of noise breathing in and out. He’s a big adult male and seems none the worse for his noisy breathing. He was criminally shy on admission, but relaxed a little, although he’d get stressed out quite quickly (read ‘his breathing becomes noisier’) whenever we went near him, which was great to see in a wild animal – we didn’t want him getting used to us.
Two sets of faecal smear tests revealed Snuffler was suffering with a capillaria infestation, affecting his lungs. Capillaria is a family of roundworm parasites, including intestinal and respiratory worms. Given that the appropriately named Snuffler constantly has a dripping nose and left mucus whereever he went it was easy to establish that his variety was the respiratory parasite.
Snuffler underwent a 3 week anti-worming course, consisting of a wormer (Ivomec) and a week’s worth of antibiotics (Marbocyl). The treatment finished on 10 July 2012. He was given the all-clear from capillaria on 13 July and went into pre-release the following day.
Despite the ‘Darth Vader’ breathing, Snuffler always ate well and had reached a kilo within a few days of being admitted, although his weight remained fairly constant throughout. By the end of his treatment he’d become quite lively, and was looking for a return to the wild. He will, sadly, retain a definite ‘rattle’, most probably a consequence of scarring to the lungs, but there is no reason he should not re-adjust quickly to life in the wild.
Within three days of entering pre-release he demanded to be returned to the wild, in Southwell with his finder, Evie, as he was becoming very stressed in the pen – we suspect he has other things on his mind, so the ladies may need to be on their guard now he’s back !