Nocardiosis (see Nocardiosis) is commonly reported in debilitated marine mammals. It has been diagnosed in bottlenose dolphins, beluga whales, pil

(Globicephala spp), harbor porpoises, killer whales (Orcinus orca), false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens), spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris
seals (Hydrurga leptonyx). Infections due to Actinomyces spp also have been diagnosed in bottlenose dolphins.


Serologic evidence of brucellosis in marine mammals was first reported in 1994. Since then, a wide range of pinniped and cetacean species have b

antibodies to Brucella spp. Several marine Brucella species have been cultured, and genetic analyses show these to be different from known terres

The names Brucella ceti and B pinnipedialis are now accepted for isolates from cetaceans and seals, respectively. Strains from dolphins, porpoises,

appear to be distinct from each other, but strains from one type of animal do not seem to vary much from the Atlantic to the Pacific ocean. Diagnosis

controversial with challenges in both culture techniques and serologic methods. Little is known about the pathophysiology of brucellosis in marine m

have been reported to cause orchitis, abortions, and meningoencephalitis. When present, brucellae often appear to be secondary or opportunistic p

experience with the disease is not extensive and no therapy or control methods are established. Zoonotic potential has not yet been determined, alt
infection has been reported.

Clostridial Myositis
Severe myositis due to infections with Clostridium spp has been diagnosed in captive killer whales, pilot whales, bottlenose dolphins, California sea

manatees. All marine mammals are probably susceptible. The disease is characterized by acute swelling, muscle necrosis, and accumulations of ga

tissues, accompanied by a severe leukocytosis. Untreated, it can be fatal. Diagnosis is based on detection of gram-positive bacilli in aspirates of the

confirmed by anaerobic culture and identification of the organism. Treatment includes systemic and local antibiotics, surgical drainage of abscessed

flushing with hydrogen peroxide. Commercially available inactivated clostridial bacterins are used routinely in some facilities, although efficacy in ma

not been studied. Botulism has been reported in captive California sea lions during an endemic outbreak of the disease in waterfowl. Affected anima

and appeared unable to swallow several days before dying.


The chief cause of death in captive marine mammals (other than polar bears) is believed to be pneumonia. Most cases of marine mammal pneumon

bacterial involvement, and most organisms cultured from terrestrial species have been identified in marine mammals. Pneumonia often can be cons

mismanagement. Marine mammals require good air quality, including high rates of air exchange at the water surface in indoor facilities. Tempered a

cold temperatures is also important to prevent lung disease, even in polar species. Animals acclimated to cold temperatures are usually quite hardy;

transition from warm environments to cold air, even with warmer water, can precipitate fulminating pneumonias, particularly in nutritionally or otherw

animals. Clinical signs include lethargy, anorexia, severe halitosis, dyspnea, pyrexia, and marked leukocytosis. The disease can progress rapidly. D

based on clinical signs and confirmed by response to therapy. Treatment consists of correction of environmental factors and intensive antibiotic and

therapy. The initial antibiotic is usually broad-spectrum, commonly cephalexin (40 mg/kg, tid-qid); adjustments are based on cultures and sensitivitie
tracheal samples.

Erysipelas (Diamond Skin Disease)

Erysipelas can be a serious infectious disease of captive cetaceans and pinnipeds. The organism,Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae, which causes erysip

other domestic species, is a common contaminant of fish. A septicemic form of the disease in marine mammals can be peracute or acute; affected a

suddenly either with no prodromal signs or with sudden depression, inappetence, or fever. A cutaneous form that causes typical rhomboidal skin les
chronic form of the disease. Animals with this form usually recover with timely antibiotic treatment.

Erysipelas. dolphin .

Necropsy of peracute cases generally fails to reveal grossly discernible lesions other than widespread petechiation. Leptospirosis is zoonotic. In seals. Vaccination is controversial. To maintain high antibody ti after 6 mo and annual revaccination are required. or a sterile abscess can result. Diagnosis is based on culture o the blood. Because the vaccine is extremely irritating. Antibodies to various Leptospiraserovars (L Canicola. some vaccination programs have been reduced to one-time administrati antibody titers fall below the presumed effective level. tetracyclines. and appropriate precautions should be taken. but hepatitis may not be apparent grossly. even in nonsensitive mammals. sensitivity tests should be performed by injecting a small amount of bacterin submucosally on the lower surface Hypersensitive animals develop swelling and redness at the injection site within 30 min. diffuse. Captive animals can be vacc areas. or chloramphenicol and supportive treatment. Control in captive animals requires serologic examination of new animals during quarantine. Leptospirosis This has been diagnosed in otarid pinnipeds and bears. erythr and hemosiderosis are seen histologically. The gallbladder may contain inspissated black bile. A long needle (≥ 2 in. the disease is characterized by depression. interstitial nephritis. or body cavities. Animals wit form usually recover with administration of penicillins. no more than 3– used at any one site. For this reason. Modified live bacterins should be avoid vaccination. Hyperplasia of Kupffer's cells. Treatment in pinnipeds is similar to that in (see Leptospirosis in Dogs). . polydipsia. [5 cm]) should be used to assure that the vaccine is deposited in the mu between muscle and blubber. immobilizing the animal for several days. L Icte-rohaemorrh Autumnalis. spleen. and vaccine bre Vials of killed erysipelas bacterin should be cultured for surviving organisms before use in marine mammals. and py cause abortions and neonatal deaths in California sea lions and Northern fur seals. reluctance to move. Lesions include a severe. Treatment of the peracute and acute forms has rarely been attempted because the absence of prodromal signs obscures the diagnosis. Gastroenteritis can be a feature. with renal with spirochetes. Bacterin should be administered in the dorsal musculature anterior and lateral to the d Administration posterior to the dorsal fin can result in a severe tissue reaction. and L Pomona) have been identified in affected animals by fluorescent antibody techniques. If cetaceans are to be revaccinated. Fatal anaphylaxis can occur on revaccination. Control seems primarily related to the provision of high-quality fish that is properly stored and handled. Arthritis has been found in animals that have died with the chronic form.

Australian sea lions (Neophoca cinerea) and New Zealand fur seals ( . Diagnosis is based on demonstration of the organism in biopsies or culture prolonged high dosages of systemic antibiotics can be successful. has been reported in pinnipeds and polar bears. It must be dist sealpox. Sporothrix schenckii. Cutaneous streptothricosis usually manifests as sharp nodules distributed over the entire body and usually progresses to death. subsequent molecular assessment places the isolates from free-ranging southern hemisphere pinnipeds in a unique cluste own species in the M tuberculosis complex. the cause of a subcutaneous mycosis. Mycobacteriosis Marine mammals are susceptible to various mycobacteria. Simultaneous infections of streptothricosis and pox have been recorded in sea lions. a subcutaneous bacterial infection with Dermatophilus congolensis. wild bottlenose dolphin in Mediterranean. Originally tho by Mycobacterium bovis. Unconfirmed mycobacteriosis has been reported in a stranded. Cutaneous Dermatophilosis) Streptothricosis. and evidence points to mycobacterial disease being possibly endemic in free-ranging otarids off the coast of Australia. has been reported in Pacific white-sided dolphins (Laegenorhynchus obliquidens). Subantarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus tropicalis) are thought to be the common link in the spread of the pinniped species because they cohabit with the other known affected species.Streptothricosis (Dolphin Pseudopox.

Another case of intradiskal osteomyelitis. Burkholderia pseudomallei has caused serious fatal outbreaks of marine mammals in captivity in the Far East. There are strong indications that immunosuppression ma the development of infections by the atypical mycobacteria. tracheal washes. Staphylococcal sept the death of a dolphin with osteomyelitis of the spine (pyogenic spondylitis). Otherwise. cetaceans. Most appear to be secondary to stress.forsteri). howeve and the usefulness is controversial. and M marinum. provided areas of the body not being treated are kept moist. S aureus also has been incriminated in a fatal pneumonia in a killer whale slow-healing wounds of cetaceans managed in open sea pens. In pinnipeds. harbor seals. and sirenians have developed disease due to M bovis. ELISA screening has antibodies in seals but requires further evaluation before it can be considered a screening test. injections in the webbing of the rear flippers should be read at 48 and 72 hr. Aspergillosis Fatal pulmonary asper-gillosis has been diagnosed in several species of cetaceans including bottlenose dolphins and killer whales. due to Staphylococcus aureus successfully with a prolonged course of cefazolin sodium and cephalexin. Intradermal testing with high concentrations of bovine or avian purified protein derivative tuberculin can be used to screen exposed animals. Topical medication of pinnipeds for dermatophytosis is feasible. M fortuitum. Mycobacteriosis in marine mammals is an emerging disease and is possibly of public health significance also Tuberculosis and other Mycobacterial Infections. or feces. Diagnosis is made by culture and identification of the lesion biopsies. Otherwise. It has also been reported to cause pneumonia in pinniped dolphins. Tissue smears cleared in warm 10% potassium hydroxide can be examined to identify characteristic fruiting bodies or hyphae. Plesiomonas shigelloides has been responsible for gastroenteritis in harbor seals.) Miscellaneous Bacterial Diseases Marine mammals are probably susceptible to the entire range of pathogenic bacteria. Pinnipeds. Some systemic mycoses have distinct geographic distributions. Mycotic Captive marine mammals seem particularly prone to fungal infections (see Fungal Infections). systemic therapy is used. Pasteurella multocida has caused several outbreaks of hemor with depression and abdominal distress leading to acute death in dolphins and pinnipeds.M chelonae. preferably. culture. chitae. Diagnosis is based on clinical signs and confirmed by identification of the organism in biopsy or. Mannheimia haemolytica has been incriminated in hemorrhagic tracheitis that responded to chloram-phenicol therapy. Wet mounts in lactophenol or cotton blue may render an immediate diagnosis with some of the morphologically distinct fungi. Cutaneous aspergillosis has been seen in gray seals (Halichoerus . Cutaneous and systemic forms are seen. and California sea lions. or other infectious disease. mycobacteriosis has been a disease of captivity. Smaller cetaceans can be kept out of water in a sling for 2–24 hr. and in several pinnipeds including Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella). Salmonella spp have caused fatal gastroenteritis in manatees and beluga whales. environmental compromise.

the lesions usually are found around body orifices. Supplementation with prednisolone (0.grypus) with concomitant mycobacteriosis. particularly in the area of the gastroesophageal junction. and vulva. Cryptococcus neoformans. Candidiasis This common mycotic disease in captive cetaceans occurs secondary to stress. Another opportunistic yeast. sid). Early detection and treatment is usually successful. particularly at the commissures of the mouth and around the eyes. . Candidiasis is also reported in pinnipeds. anus. esophageal ulcers are often found. In cetaceans. or indiscriminate antibiotic therapy. is the common presentation. PO. Diagnosis is based on identification of the yeast in cultures or biopsy. sid) along with correction of any environmental deficits.01 mg/kg) may be appropriate to compensate for ketoconazole inhibition of glucocorticoid production. Fluconazole (2 mg/kg. The respiratory form has been a postmortem diagnosis. PO. has been diagnosed in fatal advanced pulmonary disease in a bottlenose dolphin. Cutaneous lesions respond to topical povidone-iodine with ketoconazole therapy (10 mg/kg. One anecdotal report suggests a possible toxic reaction to ketoconazole in a northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris). Candidiasis generally responds well to ketoconazole (6 mg/kg. bid) has also been used successfully. Prolonged treatment with itraconazole (120 days) at routine mammalian doses was ineffective despite serum drug levels above the suggested therapeutic range. In phocid pinnipeds. At necropsy. unbalanced water disinfection with chlorines. inflammation at the mucocutaneous junctions.


Lingual candidiasis. Lobomycosis This disfiguring cutaneous disease is caused by infection with Lacazia loboi. dolphin Candidiasis. Culture of the organism has . The disease has only been reported in humans and in Atlantic bottlenose Sotalia (Sotalia fluviatilis) dolphins. oral griseofulvin. or both. dolphin Dermatophytosis Mycotic dermatitis due to Trichophyton spp or Microsporum canisgenerally responds to topical povidone-iodine.

not been possible. Zoonotic transmission has not been demonstrated. . Excisional therapy and systemic antifungal drugs have been used with varying success.

Lobomycosis. dolphin .

Parasitic Marine mammals are susceptible to all of the major groups of parasites. but clinical disease and therapy are not well documented. Diagnosis is by detection of eggs in feces. or itraconazole (1 mg/kg. Mucor spp and Entomophthora spp have caused fatal disease in bottlenose dolphins. Other zygomycetes have been diagnosed as a cause of fatal disseminated disease in various species of marine mammals. gray seals. and northern elephant seals. Clinical experience with many of these is limited. a Stellar sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus). Acanthocephalans Cetaceans are the primary host of Bolbosoma spp but can be infested with parasites of the genusCorynosoma. harbor seals. sid for 120 days). and polar bears. but newer imidazoles warrant consideration. PO. including various nematodes.Systemic Mycoses The systemic mycoses of marine mammals are a zoonotic risk. Three species of Profilicollis(also found in birds) are reported to cause . Coccidioidomycosis has been found in bottlenose dolphins. mites. Amphotericin B is the therapy of choice for zygomycete infections. California sea lions. Diagnosis is based on culture or organism identification from biopsy. harbor porpoises. bid for 21 days). Fatal systemic histoplasmosis has been reported in a captive harp seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus). California sea lions. Atlantic white-sided dolphins (Laegenorhynchus acutus). Blastomycosis has caused fatal disease in bottlenose dolphins. while others are commonly seen in recently captured specimens. Bolbosoma spp have been reported in pinnipeds. sid for 10 days). These should be considered diseases of debilitated animals. and acanthocephalans.5 mg/kg. and precautions should be taken to prevent infection when handling dead and diseased animals. C enhydra has only been reported from sea otters. a bottlenose dolphin. sid) combined with antibiotic and supportive therapy when indicated. and sea otters. Cases have responded to ketoconazole (5 mg/kg. trematodes. which have pinnipeds and sea otters as primary hosts. fluconazole (0. Northern fur seals. the underlying cause of the low host resistance to these opportunistic infections must be corrected if therapy is to be successful. California sea lions. cestodes. and a Pacific white-sided dolphin.5 mg/kg. lice. and harp seals. Zygomycetes Dermatologic conditions caused by various Fusarium spp have been reported in pygmy sperm whales (Kogia breviceps). Blastomycosis has been successfully treated with intensive management including 70 days of itraconazole (3.

Mites have been associated with large. Predisposing factors in pinnipeds are unknown. Both of these parasites use fish as intermediate hosts. The life cycles of these mites are unknown. Nonpruritic. Nasal mites cause nasal discharge but apparently little discomfort. Sea lions have Parafilaroides decorus. provided no new sources of infestation are introduced. allowed to dry before being dusted. roughened lesions of the laryngeal area of cetaceans. No successful treatment has been reported. Treatment is the same as in dogs (see Mange in Dogs and Cats). Lung mites cause rattling coughs. Rotenone powder is also effective. Diagnosis is made by identifying the mite in nasal secretions or sputum. Acariasis Nasal and lung mites are found in phocid and otarid seals. alopecic lesions with hyperkeratosis. Heavy infestations of sucking lice are common in wild pinnipeds and can cause severe anemia. Premortem diagnosis is problematic. Mortality usually occurs before the parasite produces ova. Anorexia. which has caused prenatal infections in Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. and excoriation occur on the flippers and other body surfaces that contact the substrate. but their overall significance or treatment is unknown.peritonitis associated with intestinal perforation in sea otters. They are highly sensitive to ivermectin as well as chlorinated hydrocarbon insecticides. The lice can be seen grossly and are readily transmitted. larva Lungworm infection can be diagnosed by examination of feces or bronchial mucus. Treatment of P decorus infection . and sometimes blood-flecked mucus are the first signs of pulmonary parasitism. There are at least 4 species of lungworms in various cetacean hosts. while true seals are usually parasitized by Otostrongylus circumlitus. including Halocercus lagenorhynchi. Infections have been cleared rapidly with 2 injections of ivermectin at 200 μg/kg. and kept out of the water ≥12 hr. however. Treatments must be repeated in 10–12 days. The mites are not readily transmitted among contact animals. it does not produce a microfilaremia. The latter parasite is also found in the hearts of some phocids. Demodectic mange has been diagnosed in California sea lions. Otostrongylus circumlitus. Animals in captivity can be freed of parasites. The affected animal must be removed from the water. 2 wk apart. coughing. Treatment of infected animals eliminates the problem in captive enclosures without environmental treatment. Secondary bacterial infection that results in pyoderma occurs in chronic cases. Diagnosis is made by deep skin scrapings and identification of the mite. Lungworm Lungworms are common in all pinnipeds. scaling.

however. however. with the advantage of oral administration. antibiotics to treat any concomitant bacterial pneumonia. Cetacean lungworms probably are also susceptible to levamisole and ivermectin. and otarids are infected subcutaneously by A odendhali. sid for 5 days). In captivity. PO or SC administration has been recommended. sea otters. ulceration. Acanthocheilonema microfilariae Other Nematodes The Anasakidae are pathogenic nematodes found in the stomach of marine mammals. combined therapy with ivermectin and fenbendazole given 3 days after initiation of therapy with dexamethasone. Prevention in endemic areas has been successful with oral administration of ivermectin (canine dosages) monthly or diethylcarbamazine (3. and neutrophilia before the parasites become patent and first-stage larvae can be detected in sputum or feces. and concurrent prednisone or dexamethasone. Dirofilariasis is diagnosed by identifying microfilariae in the blood. Gastric nematodes can . Feeding frozen fish prevents reinfection. Infections with Contracaecum spp are common in wild cetaceans and pinnipeds. A graded regimen of levamisole phosphate progressing to a high dosage (40 mg/kg. Polar bears in captivity are prone to heavy ascarid infection. Raw fish is most often incriminated as the source of infection. Phocid seals are affected by A spirocauda. Some success in treatment has been reported using intratracheal administration of levamisole phosphate (5 mg/kg. ivermectin. Transmission of A spirocauda is thought to be by the seal louse (Echinophthirius horridus). dehydration. Both groups of pinnipeds can be infected with the canine heartworm Dirofilaria immitis in endemic areas. and ultimately perforation and peritonitis. Diagnosis ofO circumlitus in elephant seals is complicated by mortality occurring after generalized clinical signs of depression. Transmission is thought to be by the same mosquitos that bite dogs. lungworm infections are usually self-limiting if larvae are not introduced in fresh fish intermediate hosts. Lungworm infections often remain asymptomatic for long periods with clinical signs appearing only when an animal becomes debilitated for other reasons. however. or sirenians. phocid seals are abnormal hosts.consists of mucolytic agents administered intratracheally.3 mg/kg) weekly. Granulomas form at their attachment sites and can lead to blood loss. and mucolytic agents may be more effective. sid for 1 wk) has successfully cleared infection in captive pinnipeds. the sudden deaths of 2 beluga whales injected IM with levamisole phosphate suggest this drug administered by that route may be contraindicated. antibiotics. A percentage of pinnipeds also show neurologic reactions to IM injection of levamisole. Heartworm Heartworms of the genus Acanthocheilonema are a common necropsy finding in pinnipeds but have not been reported in cetaceans. in food during the mosquito season (see Heartworm Disease).

Many species of a large spirurid nematode (Crassicauda spp) infect the cranial sinuses. or mebendazole (9 mg/kg) given twice. Infections are often accompanied by halitosis and brown mucus around the blowhole and occasionally by coughing. Oral praziquantel (10 mg/kg. Ova of these trematodes have been associated with necrotic foci in the brains of animals showing behavioral aberrations and have been incriminated as a cause of localized pneumonia in cetaceans. kidneys. fenbendazole (11 mg/kg). Reinfection can be prevented by not feeding fresh or live fish. but are not known to have clinical significance. Successful treatments are not documented but are potentially possible with systemic parasiticides. Other cestodes commonly seen include D lanceolatum in phocid seals. Disophenol (12. and mammary gland ducts of cetaceans. 10 days apart. ova Anisakis spp. 2 treatments 1 wk apart) is usually effective. Praziquantel (10 mg/kg) or niclosamide (160 mg/kg) are effective treatments. Several species of cestodes are reported in sea otters and polar bears. Newborn pups are infected via successfully treated with oral dichlorvos (30 mg/kg).Diplogonoporus tetrapterous in all pinnipeds. and heavy infection is thought to cause intestinal obstruction. and Tetrabothrium forsteri and Strobilocephalus triangularisin cetaceans. ova Hookworms (Uncinaria spp) are found in pinnipeds. Ivermectin may be considered. Nasitrema spp are found in the nasal passages and sinuses of cetaceans.5 mg/kg) or ivermectin (100 μg/kg) injected SC are effective against these parasites. Contracaecum spp. Diagnosis is based on demonstration of typical operculated trematode ova in blowhole swabs or feces. These usually are the larval forms of tapeworms of sharks. major vessels. Cestodiasis Diphyllobothrium pacificum is commonly found in sea lions. Cetaceans are also commonly infected with subcutaneous tapeworm cysts throughout the blubber. . Trematodiasis Fluke infections are common in pinnipeds and cetaceans. Severe infections are known only in the fur seals.

or husbandry changes. Eimeria trichechi reported from the Amazonian manatee (Trichechus inunguis).Nasitrema spp. Infection can be asymptomatic or cause severe encephalitis characterized by generalized neurologic signs. Diagnosis is based on identification of trematode ova in the feces. are also not associated with disease. Coccidiosis Coccidia (Eimeria phocae) have been found in harbor seals with a fatal. A coccidian. amprolium. handling. eg. Methods of premortem diagnosis are currently under development. and E nodulosa reported from the Florida manatee. Clinical disease with this parasite is thought to be rare unless the host is stressed through capture. Signs are usually seen in adults and include icterus. Toxoplasmosis Toxoplasma gondii is known to infect the California population of sea otters causing disease that ranges from asymptomatic infection to severe encephalitis. (See also Coccidiosis. Pancreatic fibrosis due to trematodiasis is a common necropsy finding. however. other workers consider the parasite to have been a fish coccidia not associated with the disease. intestines. and anorexia. has been reported as the cause of enteritis in bottlenose dolphins. These coccidia are probably susceptible to anticoccidial drugs used against other species. and phocid species and do not seem to be associated with any recognized clinical signs. and other abdominal organs of marine mammals.Cystoisospora delphini. Bilirubinemia and increased serum hepatic enzymes are common. it causes biliary hypertrophy and fibrosis of the liver. bloody diarrhea. pancreas. liver. No successful treatment has been reported. ova Various other trematodes infect the stomach. Zalophotrema hepaticum. ova Zalophotrema hepaticum is an important hepatic trematode of California sea lions. otarid. Treatment with praziquantel (10 mg/kg) or with bithional (20 mg/kg) has been successful. Fatal meningoencephalitis due to T gondii has also been .) Sarcocystis Sarcocystis neurona is found in high prevalence in the California population of sea otters. lethargy.Sarcocystis spp have been found in the muscles of many cetacean.

Adenovirus from California sea lions is not known to cause disease in humans. heavy exposure to caliciviruses can result in neutralizing antibodies. infections have not been diagnosed in m the Atlantic Ocean. Viral Diseases Adenovirus Adenovirus has been isolated from a sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis) and bowhead whales (Balaena mysticetus) and in livers from 6 stranded you lions with hepatitis. and eventually posterior paresis. T gondii is reported from Atlantic bottlenose. The marine caliciviruses serotypes of vesicular exanthema of swine virus (VESV. a relative lymphopenia and monocytosis were seen. Herpesvirus-like particles have been demonstr from beluga whales and dusky dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus). and opaleye fish (Girella nigricans). Pinnipeds developed weakness. No evidence of adeno in the lungs. Herpesvirus-like lesions occur in a wide variety of other pinnipeds and cetacea herpesviruses have been characterized from harbor seals and gray seals. emaciation. the vesicles are most prevalent on the dorsal surfaces of the fore flipp vesicular lesions have been seen in association with “tattoo” lesions and old scars. striped (Stenella coeruleoalba). see Vesicular Exanthema of Swine). To date. Treatment is supportive only. By 4 mo of age. Phocid herpesvirus type-1 (PhHV-1) is an α-herpesvirus similar to canine Phocid herpesvirus-2 (PhHV-2) is a putative γ-herpesvirus. Other than a postmortem diagnosis of herpesvirus encephalitis in a dead harbor porpois herpesviral disease in cetaceans have been limited to skin and mucosal lesions with little clinical significance. skin lesions usually resolve without tre may cause premature parturition in pinnipeds. a California sea lion. No disease was noted in the cetaceans. Caliciviruses (San Miguel Sea Lion Virus) Caliciviruses have been isolated from otarid seals. Affected pups have interstitial pneumonitis and encephalitis and fail to thrive. polydipsia. In humans. Disseminated toxoplasmosis is reported in California sea lions. abdominal splinti diarrhea. walrus. All pinnipeds developed pneumonia and died within The most prominent histologic lesion in all cases was hepatic necrosis. . Herpesvirus Herpesviruses have been isolated from neonatal harbor seals. Risso's (Grampus griseus). In pinnipeds. The most consistent lesion in marine mammals is skin vesicles. They usually erode and l healing ulcers. Opaleye fish are probab the endemic status of caliciviruses in marine mammals that inhabit the coastal waters of California. No successful treatment has been reported. most California sea lions have neutralizing antibodies to one or more of the serotypes. Vesicles are 1 mm to 3 cm in diameter. Methods of premortem diagnosis are currently under development. and a gray seal. A herpes-like virus was found associa ulcers in sea otters stressed in oil spill rehabilitation processing. Localized lesions in an accidental laboratory exposure as well as isolation of calicivirus from a clin indicate that these viruses should be handled carefully. but occasionally vesicles regress and leave plaque-like lesions. photophobia. Toxoplasma spp encephalitis is also reported in harbor seals and Northern fur seals. Inoculation of marine caliciviruses into pigs causes vesicular lesions identical to those seen in vesicular exanthema.reported in a Florida manatee. Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Several species of mysticete cetaceans have antibodies t serotypes of VESV. and spinner dolphins. Massive coagulation necrosis without apparent zonal distribution occurred in Basophilic intranuclear inclusions in hepatocytes or granular amphophilic intranuclear inclusions in Kupffer's cells were seen.

inflammation of the oral mucosa. In the pilot whale. vomiting.5 cm in diameter in gray seals. white or bloody nasal discharge will be evident. In harbor seals. For differential diagnosis.Young harbor seals from Atlantic waters infected with PhHV-1 develop nasal discharge. young seals are affected and show depression. seeHERPESVIRUS. Pneumonia develops and high in previously unexposed animals. and dyspneic. The centers of some les may contain verrucous growths. up to 2 cm in diameter. closely related to rinderpest (see Rinderpest) and peste des petits ruminants (see Peste d . and lethargy that can result in death in 1–6 days. There is no evidence that the herpesviruses of pinnipeds or zoonotic. pneumonia. Seals vaccinated with canine distempe been rendered immune to challenge with the virus (suspension of organ material) obtained from dead wild seals. and identical virus has been recovered. Many factors probably contribute to the explosive nature of the reported epidemics. Outbreaks in wild harbor seals have been extensive in the North Sea. Morbillivirus Phocid seals are susceptible to canine distemper virus (see Canine Distemper) and to a closely related but distinct morbillivirus (phocine distemper vir Generally. Persons whose eyes were contaminated while doing necropsies. Pacific harbor seals with PhHV-1 tend to develop signs related to adrenal and hepatic dys PhHV-2 has been associated with recurring circumscribed areas of alopecia ∼0. oral acyclovir did not eliminate the infection but appeared to sig clinical signs in primary infections. Diagnosis is often made at necropsy or by clinical signs and observation of characteristic intranuclear inclusion bodies in biopsies of early skin lesio interstitial pneumonia caused by herpesvirus must be distinguished from bronchial pneumonia caused by influenza virus. above. and dyspnea. which had difficulty maneuvering. Infection is probably comm nonspecific clinical signs were reported in the stranded pilot whale. which suggests that the reaction is local. as occurs with Newcastle disease virus. In systemic herpesvirus infection. High population densities and unseasonably warm tem contribute to high mortality. incoordinated. Vaccination with 1 mL of trivalent poliovirus vaccine to control recrudescence of suspected herpesvirus lesions ha some success. anorexia. The incubation period appears to be 10–14 days. was emaciated. Morbidity can approach 100% in stressed seals in crowded condi ∼50%. and fev coughing. diarrhea. crusting conjunctivitis. Even well-fed captive animals become weak. and was sloughing skin. Herpetic lesions in beluga whales a circular. influenza pneumonia is characterized by necrotizing bronchitis and bronchiolitis and hemorrhagic alveolitis. Swollen necks due to fas escaping through the thoracic inlet is reported. and may appear slightly depressed with a target appearance or be raised and proliferative. Systemic infections have not been documented in the whales. although it reduced the severity of recrudescence in seals. The incubation period during epidemic ≤ 3 days. The virulence of epidemics has precluded attempts at intensive supportive care. Occasionally. anorexia. have developed keratoconjunctivitis within 2–3 days. All affected people have recovere within 7 days without developing any antibody titers. there is a potential public health risk because live poliovirus may be shed Stress and immunosuppression are associated with recrudescence of latent infections. the lu hemorrhagic and a hilar node was greatly enlarged. Influenza Virus Four different influenza A viruses have been isolated from harbor seals and 2 other subtypes from a stranded pilot whale. In a documented epidemic. Disea influenza virus in seals is better characterized. nasal discharge. A delphinoid distemper virus (cetacean morbillivirus [CMV]). therapy is supportive. o on by affected seals.

Lesions can recur. Cutaneous poxvirus infections in cetaceans can occur on any part of the body but are most common on the head. The parapoxviruses of pinnipeds can c lesions on the hands of persons not wearing gloves during contact with infected animals. although nodules are reported to persist as long as 15–18 wk. In the wild. The incubation period is 3–5 wk. which was confirmed by immunofluorescent examination of the brain. Areas of alopecia and scar tissue may remain after resolution. pectoral flippers. Other rhabdoviruses isolated from cetaceans. but this approach has not been a America. They are usually light gray and may have a dark gray border.5–3 cm. Miscellaneous Viral Diseases A ringed seal (Phoca hispida) in Norway was diagnosed with rabies. which sometimes coalesce. An has been isolated from pox-like lesions on a gray seal. long-beaked common dolphins (Delphis capensis). Vaccination with a subunit vaccine is practiced in European rescue centers and appears to be protective. dorsal fin. Hector's dolphins ( hectori). stippled patterns (“tattoo” lesions). cutaneous. which are not recognized by antisera to representatives of the Ephemerovirus. has been implicated in the deaths of harbor porpoises and common dolphins off the coast of the UK. At the tim epidemic of rabies in foxes in the area. or Vesiculovirus genera.Ruminants). punctiform. striped dolphins in the Mediterrane dolphins in the western Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. and several species of mystice . Diagnosis is based on the presence of eosinophilic. raised nodules (0. roun blemishes. Therapy to control secondary bacterial infections is indicated only when skin lesions suppurate. Therapy is supportive. neck. respectively. Mortality in naive populations is high. Poxviruses of marine mammals do not appear to cause systemic infections. and ta range from ring or pinhole lesions to black. dusky dolphins.5–1 cm in diameter) occur on the head. harp seals. A break in the epithelial surfa required to start an infection. other fact responsible. After the fo begin to regress. and flippers of a These may increase to 1. Ring or pinhole lesions appear as solitary. Major differential diagnoses include cutaneous streptothricosis and calicivirus. Pilot whale calves. often due to secondary infections facilitated by the immunosuppressive impact of active infection. lesions in South American sea lions (Otaria byronia) and Northern fur seals are probably not. although the reverse color pattern is also seen persist for months or years without apparent ill effects. Cases in killer whales.5–3 cm in diameter during the first week and may ulcerate or develop satellite lesions during the second week. in large part due to lack of availability of the appropriate vaccine. harp seals and pilot incriminated as apparent reservoirs of PDV and CMV. may be related to rhabdoviruses of fish. intracytoplasmic lesion biopsies and is confirmed by identification of typical poxvirus particles by electron microscopy. Although animals with cutaneous poxvirus lesions have died. Poxvirus Poxvirus has been identified morphologically in skin lesions of both captive and free-ranging pinnipeds and cetaceans. 0. Small. hooded se cristata). Papillomavirus infections have been reported in a wide range of cetaceans including narwals (Monodon monoceros). Lesions in California sea lion and gray seals are probably due to parapoxviruses. and Mediterranean monk seals (Monachus monachus) have been affected by PDV and/or CMV infections. Outbreaks typically occur in postweanling pinnipeds recently introduced into captivity. An unclassified poxvirus has also been associated with skin lesions in Atlantic bottlenose do stranded Atlantic white-sided dolphin. white-beaked dolphins (Laegenorhynchus albirostris). and Burmeister's porpoises (Phocoena spinipinnis) have also been reported.

but no virus was isolated.are typical of those found in terrestrial species. They are of little consequence except for malignant lymphom in which horizontal transmission can occur in a closed population. Hepadnavirus infection with a hepatitis B-like agent has been documented in a Pacific white-sided dolphin with a long history of recurrent illness in c evidence of zoonotic transmission was identified. although a wide variety has been reported. Neoplastic Diseases Tumors in marine mammals are infrequent. An enterovirus of unknown pathogenicity isolated from a rectal swab of a California gray whale has now been reclassified as a calicivirus. against human influenza virus (after challenge) and poliomyelitis virus were found in bottlenose dolphins. . Immunohistochemical staining consistent with coronavirus infections was found in 2 adult harbor seals that died without clinical signs and a third tha a brief period of anorexia and behavioral aberration. Antibodie with disease. Lesions are usually self-limiting. No therapy is available. The only retrovirus identified to date in a marine mammal was a spumavirus isolated from recurring skin lesions in a California sea lion that subsequ of Pasteurella pneumonia complicated with herpesvirus. Severe enteritis and vomiting that rapidly led to death in a captive beluga whale were suggestive of parvovirus enteritis.