The Tasmanian Devils Develop A Shocking Disease

18 Nov 2015 by Morgan Knight, No Comments »

On the island of Tasmania, a strange disease was killing the Tasmanian devil’s on the island. A zoologist named Menna Jones was used to hearing animals screech very loudly in the night, but there was a reason why they were. Tasmanian devil’s began to develop immense lumps that swelled on the animal’s neck and face. This deadly disease prevented the mammal from eating or drinking anything, so these poor animals would suffer a slow and dreadful death. Photographers and zoologists began to see these animals with facial tumors. No one had thought that a dangerous disease was spreading across Menna Jones, the zoologist’s, study site. They began to realize that this was a deadly, fast spreading disease when Tasmanian devil’s began dying at Jones’ site in 2001.

“That was the first indication that we had a devastating disease in our midst.” Menna Jones states. No one could find a cure for the shocking disease, and by the start of 2001, 90% of the Tasmanian devil population had vanished because of this epidemic. This disease can spread to other Tasmanian devil’s when one animal that has not been infected bites another with DFTD (Deadly Facial Tumor Disease) and the tumor cells can spread to the healthy Tasmanian devil through cuts or scrapes in the animals mouth. The animal is now prone to dying in a few months. Zoologists have been breeding the Tasmanian devil’s to make sure these animals live on and don’t become endangered. Experts are keeping these animals at an Australian zoo to ensure that they do not become extinct. Hopefully this shocking, deadly disease will vanish and the Tasmanian devils will soon be roaming free in the wild again.

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