The bacteriological examinations of abnormal stools, irrespective of the apparent seriousness of the illness, is particularly important in a zoological park where it is difficult to apply measures to keep out possibly infected wild, non-resident animals and mechanical carriers, such as flies, cockroaches, etc. One obvious instance of the initiation of an epidemic by nonresident animals was the occurrence of infection with Salmonella newport among the animals in the pachyderm house. The first case in an elephant occurred about a month after S. newport had been isolated from the blood of a skunk found dead in the park. Prompt diagnosis of the first case and examination of the stools of other animals in the same building led to the discovery of further infections before symptoms occurred in the other animals. Suitable antibiotic therapy was instituted, but the first animal, an adult female elephant, was lost. All the pathogenic enteric bacteria isolated were identified as S. newport.¹) A fatal infection of a young forest horse with Salmonella typhimurium occurred following a long period of rainy weather leading to standing water in the enclosure. Contamination of the water by wild rats is believed to have been the most likely source of infection in this instance. No secondary cases occurred.

Bijdragen tot de dierkunde

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Naturalis journals & series

Williamson, W. M., Tilden, E. B., & Getty, R. E. (1963). Enteric Infections occuring during an eight Year Period at the Chicago Zoological Park Brookfield, Illinois. Bijdragen tot de dierkunde, 33(1), 87–88.