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Health and Husbandry of Exotic Animals

Module content

kirstie fraser

on 6 September 2016

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Transcript of Health and Husbandry of Exotic Animals

Health and Husbandry of Exotic Animals
Learning Outcome 1 - Source of Supply
This is a short learning outcome that we will cover in the first couple of weeks. We will investigate:
1) The welfare requirements of exotic species.
2)Where these animals can be sourced.
3) The environmental implications of keeping exotic animals.
4) Legislation covering the keeping of exotic species.
Read: Far From Home
Task: List the main problems that reptiles suffer from in captivity.
Requirements for Exotic Species
The Five Needs:
1) Somewhere suitable to live
2)A proper diet
3)The ability to express natural behaviours
4) Any animal needs to be housed with, or away from, other animals.
5)Protection from, and treatment of, illness and injury.
What are the five needs?
Source of Supply:
Task: think of as many places that exotics could be acquired.
What are the costs and benefits of each ? - think about welfare and conservation.
Health and Welfare of Exotics.

We will look at the causes of ill health and poor welfare in exotic species.

You will learn how to recognise symptoms of some of the more common exotic diseases and disorders and methods of recording, monitoring and treatment.
Learning Outcome 2
This is a practical outcome where we will investigate different styles of housing and diets for a range of exotic species. You will have the opportunity to clean, maintain and establish enclosures for animals in the unit. You will also have the opportunity to feed the range of exotic species we have in the unit. This learning outcome is practically assessed and will incorporate the assessments for the Accommodation of Animals unit.
Learning Outcome 3 - Housing and Feeding
During this learning outcome you will cover different handling techniques for a range of exotic species. You will also investigate legislation governing the transport of animals.This learning outcome is practically assessed and will incorporate the assessment for Accommodation of Animals.
Learning Outcome 4
Handling and Transport
What is an Exotic Animal?
An exotic pet is defined as a rare or unusual animal pet, or an animal kept within human households which is not commonly thought of as a pet.
Why do people keep exotic animals in captivity?
Task: In groups, for one of the needs, think of as many ways that your chosen need can be met when keeping exotic species.
Captive Bred Vs Wild Caught

See handout on Sustainable Harvesting of Cardinal Tetras

CB =
WC =
CF =

Task: List pros and cons for sourcing WC, CB an CF animals, think about health, welfare and conservation reasons.
Legislation covering exotic species
Member Countries
Since the 1900’s there has been an increasing interest in keeping exotic species as pets.
This has led to the decreasing numbers of animals found in the wild and in some cases leading to extinction.
There is legislation in place to protect species around the world from over collection for the pet trade.
Legislation affecting the collection of Exotic Pets.
There are three main types of legislation covering exotic species:
1) Legislation covering the treatment and housing of the animal.
2) Legislation covering the collection of the animal.
3) Legislation covering the transport of the animal.
Appendix I – includes species threatened with extinction. Trade in specimens of these species is permitted only in exceptional circumstances.
Appendix II – includes species not necessarily threatened with extinction, but in which trade must be controlled in order to avoid utilization incompatible with their survival.
Appendix III – contains species that are protected in at least one country that has asked other countries for help in controlling the trade.
The Three Appendices of CITES
Intentional killing, injuring, taking
Possession or control (live or dead animals, part or derivative)
Damage to, destruction of, obstruction of access to any structure or place used by a scheduled animal for shelter or protection
Disturbance of an animal occupying such a structure or place.
Selling, offering for sale, possessing or transporting for the purpose of sale (live or dead animal, part or derivative)
Advertising for buying or selling such things.
Protection Offered
This legislation was introduced to protect the public from the fashion of keeping dangerous species as pets.
Covers animals such as big cats, some primates, crocodilians, venomous snakes, dangerous spiders and scorpions.
It is an offence to keep an animal from the list without a license issued by the local authority.
Police have the power to seize, detain or destroy without compensation, any animal being kept without a license or where welfare or safety is being compromised.
Dangerous Wild
Animals Act 1976
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
CITES is an international trade agreement between governments.
Over 30,000 species of plant and animals are given protection through CITES
Many of the species covered by the convention are not endangered but would become so if free trade was allowed.
1) Describe CITES and the different levels of protection.
2) Name the sections in the Wildlife and Countryside Act that relate to exotic animal keeping.
3) State the purpose of the DWA and how a license is issued.
4) Identify five different sources of supply of exotic pets
5) List reasons for and against keeping wild caught exotic animals
Aims: Introduce legislation
that is specific to exotic animals and also covers general animal welfare.
There are between 16 and 20 circuses in the UK that use animals. 12 of which are members of the Association of Circus Proprietors.
The number of animals kept by circuses varies between 200 and 300.
Circuses are regulated under the Performing Animals (regulations and rules) Act 1925/1968
Any person who trains or exhibits any performing animal must be registered with the local authority.
A zoo is an establishment where wild animals are kept for exhibition to which members of the public have access, with or without charge for more than 7 days of the year.
This also applies to butterfly houses, safari parks, aquaria, farm parks etc.
Pet shops, aquaria, farm parks etc.
Pet shops and circuses are not included
This legislation over-rides the DWA act and so zoos do not have to possess a DWA license.
Zoo Licensing Act 1981
The wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 was drawn up to protect the wildlife and wild habitats of the UK.
One example of how it might affect an exotic pet owner is that it is illegal to release or allow the escape of a non-native species into the wild in the uk.
This act also offers protection to native species directly from people.
Wildlife and
Countryside Act 1981
Trade in certain species is controlled.
All imports, exports, re-exports and re-introductions covered by the convention has to be done through a licensing system.
There is a yearly meeting to decide among the countries which species should be offered the different levels of protection.
How CITES Works
Handling Exotic Species
Transporting Exotics
Animal Transport Act 2006
“No person shall transport animals or cause animals to be transported in a way that is likely to cause injury or undue suffering to them” (Source: Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005 on the protection of animals during transport and related operations and amending Directives).

In the UK we have always emphasised the need for animals to be transported in a way that would not cause injury or unnecessary suffering. This will continue. All persons who take animals on a journey, whatever the length, should always apply the following good transport practice:

1) The journey is properly planned and time is kept to a minimum and the animals are checked and their needs met during the journey.

2) The animals are fit to travel.

3) The vehicle and loading and unloading facilities are designed, constructed and maintained to avoid injury and suffering.

4) Those handling animals are trained or competent in the task and do not use violence or any methods likely to cause unnecessary fear, injury or suffering.

5) Water, feed and rest are given to the animals as needed, and sufficient floor space and height is allowed.
Animal welfare during transport
Extremes of temperature should be avoided. Animals can generally cope with reasonable variations in temperature but they should not be exposed to direct heat or cold during their journey. Weather conditions should play a part in planning journeys.
Environmental Conditions
Any animal container must be adequately ventilated. The ventilation holes should be equally distributed and should be small enough that no part of the animal's body can fit through. When transporting a group of animals in containers, the containers should be placed 30 - 60cm apart.
Live Animals Regulations (LAR). IATA LAR is the global standard and essential guide to transporting live animals by air in a safe, humane, and cost-effective manner. Whether you are a shipper, a freight forwarder, an airline or an animal care professional, a working knowledge of LAR is a must to ensure that live animals are transported humanely and in compliance with airline regulations and animal welfare standards.
International Air Transport Association
Transportation Accommodation
What other information should you include when transporting an animal?
What Environmental Conditions have to be considered when transporting animals?
Handling and Restraint of Birds

Most cage birds are usually docile but they can peck, scratch, or inflict puncture wounds if not handled correctly.
Roosters may develop large spurs on their legs which can inflict serious wounds.
Removing food bowls and perches and darkening the room helps when removing bird from cage.
Manual Restraint

Place your hands over the bird’s wings and hold them against its back. While lifting the bird minimize the amount of pressure around the thorax to prevent compromising their ability to inhale and exhale. The bird’s keel needs to be able to move in ventral/dorsal direction for respiration.

Smaller birds may be held in one hand (e.g. canaries and finches). Use index and middle finger to extend the head for further restraint. Care should be taken since the limbs of small birds break easily. Always grab the whole bird and not just the limb.

Larger birds’ wings may be held in one hand over the back and the legs grasped with the other hand. For frightened or fractious birds the head can be covered with a cloth.

Raptors should always be handled with leather gloves that cover the forearm so the bird can perch on the arm. The head should be covered (hood or soft cloth). Towels may also be used to aid in capture of the bird. Care must be taken to avoid jeopardizing the bird’s breathing.
Most birds are quieter when placed in dorsal recumbency for examination (cover head where possible)
Handling Large Lizards
Handling Large Snakes
The importance of the correct personal protective equipment

Transporting Reptiles
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