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 Patches of abnormal scales pre and post-shed pleas
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Snake mite

6 Posts

Posted - 15/11/2012 :  05:48:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

I have had my female BRB a little more than a year now and in that time, she has gone into shed quite regularly, about once every 30 days or so. A couple of weeks before she started showing signs of her most recent shed, I noticed a few patches of scales that looked amiss:

(sorry for the cell quality pics)

After she shed, the patches that were off before are not smooth. They came out like the ones visible in the bottom of the second photo, all wrinkly.
No after picture, sorry, she just ate and then buried herself in her substrate. Once she re-appears I will take a shot.

What causes this? Should I be worried? What can I do to prevent this from happening in the future?

Rainbow Master

2718 Posts

Posted - 16/11/2012 :  20:56:26  Show Profile  Visit Snakesitter's Homepage  Reply with Quote
My best guess would be a fungal or bacterial infection, RedRaven. Did you save any of the shed skin? How did those patches look on it? I would get her to a reptile vet and have him take a swab sample of two of those areas (he can combine them in one test package) and send them off to a lab to check. Fungal tests are not usually that expensive, and pretty quick to run. In the meantime, carefully quaratine her from your other herps, just in case.

As for cause...that's a tough one. Keep in mind that every creature -- snake, dog, even human -- carries countless microorganisms with and in them all their lives, and encounters countless more in their daily environment. Some of those are pathogenic, some are enviromental with a low chance of causing an opportunistic infection. Usually, they do not cause problems, kept in check by solid hygiene and a robust immune system. Sometimes, however, a break in either of those defenses will give the intruder the upper hand, resulting in illness. Think of an RI in a snake, or athlete's foot in a human. Provided the animal is otherwise healthy and prompt medical attention is given, recovery is usually quick and fine.

As I said, get her to a vet to determine what the underlying cause is, and then you can treat it. To prevent a reoccurrence, make sure to bleach-clean her tank and all furnishings as part of the process.

I wish you the best of luck!

Cliff Earle
Living Gems Reptiles

Premium Brazilian Rainbow Boas from a disease-tested facility
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Edited by - Snakesitter on 16/11/2012 21:12:56
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