Rod out back 2008-08-20 10:12:10
Not a pet Beaded Dragon, but it concerned me all the same…
I was out mustering sheep this morning on my motorbike. In my travels, I
saw a large adult Bearded Dragon on a stump, and I rode over to look at him.
They are very common in this part of the world, but this one was at the
right height to have a look at. I think for the whole morning (approx 30
miles of riding), I would have noticed about 5 of these lizards, and I wasnt
really looking for any(too busy).
When I got closer, i saw it had some sort of infection\disease eating away
the front of it’s nose. I would say the front quarter-inch of it’s nose and
jaw looked like it was slowly being eaten away. When I went to grab the
animal for a closer look, it dropped to the ground and dissappeared before I
could get off my bike.
The lizard was in an area where it couldnt have been injured on a road, nor
exposed to any hazardous chemicals. The lizard was in good condition, with
a plump tail and looked healthy all over(aside from the nose). I recall
what looked like diluted dried blood down it’s chin, which my intial thought
was it had been bleeding recently.
To be honest, it is the first time I have seen a wild bearded dragon with
anything aside from injuries when they get hit on the main road (usually
fatal). I cannot for the life of me work out if I was looking at the result
of a recent fight, but the type of injury didnt seem right. Usually fights
leave skin hanging off, and a few other scratches and bites, etc. It looked
more like a progressive erosion of the nose. A bit like if you poured
strong acid on the nose. This animal was in an area of the property where
it’s exposure to humans or their associated rubbish was highly unlikely.
I recall someone saying on here recently about a disease that does this(eats
away). Is it likely that this could occur in the wild, or is it something
associated with captivity?
Its unlikely I’ll see the lizard again, but we are mustering out in that
paddock over the next 2 days, so I might make a point of trying to find it
again. You never know.
Any ideas or thoughts appreciated.
Rod…….Out Back Australia
Gloria carr 2008-08-20 10:12:12
The only ‘eroding’ disease I can think of in captivity would be metabolic
bone disease, which would be highly unlikely for a wild beardie to get as it
is caused by a insufficient UVB and an inadequate diet. Not likely to be a
problem in the wild!
Frankly it sounds more like something like gangrene, probably unlikely that
a wild beardie would get that, but it could still happen… I could also be
something like self-injury due to a tick/mite problem. Again, while many
wild reptiles have some ticks and mites, they usually only cause a problem
in captivity where a reptile cannot escape them once they’ve shed their
skin, in the wild they would just walk away…
I suspect the only way to find out would be to catch him and get the wound
cultured. Maybe someone here more knowledgeable then I could give you a