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PATIENT OF THE WEEK

THE STORIES BEHIND THE PATIENTS AT THE AUSTRALIA ZOO WILDLIFE HOSPITAL

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Stevie the Juvenile Echidna   - 1st April 2014

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Stevie the Juvenile Echidna

Age: Juvenile   Sex: Unknown   Weight: 420 grams

Found: Stevie was handed into a vet surgery and later transferred to the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital.

Transported to: The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital by a rehabilitator who was kind enough to act as "Echidna Ambulance".

Veterinary Assessment: Stevie was very thin and cold when he arrived at the hospital. Dr Amber found him very quiet. Stevie was dehydrated and on physical examination appeared to have a degree of constipation. Stevie was quite small for newly emerged echidna.

Treatment: Blood tests were conducted and were found to be normal. Dr Amber found that Stevie was simply not coping on his own in the wild and would need specilised care from an echidna carer until he was large enough for release.

Outcome: Stevie has been moved into the care of an experienced wildlife rehabilitator. He will be given time to increase his weight and size to give him a greater chance of survival in the wild.

AZWH Fact: After initial nurturing in a pouch, Echidna mothers seal their babies, puggles, into an underground burrow closed off with earth. They return to feed them every 5 days, approximately. The juveniles remain in the burrow until they are around 7 months old. After their last milk feed, Mum opens the burrow and walks away. Tough love!!



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