The use of Cydectin® by wildlife carers to treat sarcoptic mange in free-ranging bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus)

Julie M. Old, Candice J.A. Skelton, Hayley J. Stannard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Wombats suffer from sarcoptic mange, a mite infection that ultimately leads to their death from secondary infections. In 2017, wildlife carers were granted legal approval to treat bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus) for sarcoptic mange in the field using 4 mL of topical Cydectin® per adult wombat. However, (limited) scientific field trials suggest approved protocols are inadequate which has been supported anecdotally by wildlife carers. Elucidating carer experience is key to holistically advancing understandings of sarcoptic mange treatment. We interviewed 18 wildlife carers regarding the use of Cydectin® to treat free-ranging adult wombats infected with sarcoptic mange which uncovered 43 detailed case studies for examination. Case studies revealed that wildlife carers have used 10–200-mL doses of topical Cydectin® to treat wombats to recovery. These results suggest there is no best-fit for treating wombats in the field, due to individual differences in observed levels of sarcoptic mange severity and differences in wombat behavior. Furthermore, wildlife carers suggested pour-on Cydectin® appeared non-toxic to wombats at rates as high as 200 mL per treatment. We recommend scientific trials should be undertaken to determine the impact and efficacy of the varying treatment regimens, including low and high doses of topical Cydectin® on bare-nosed wombats. This information is required for regulating authorities, and subsequently wildlife carers, and managers, to make fully informed decisions about wombat sarcoptic mange treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1077-1090
Number of pages14
JournalParasitology Research
Volume120
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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