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So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin #284279
05/11/07 01:59 AM
05/11/07 01:59 AM

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I lost my copy of the BML and went to the diet and nutrition links and to one link in Particular:
http://www.angelfire.com/nb/sugargliders/bml/leadbeat.html
and found that something is up with feeding crickets to my babies!

Does anyone have anymore information about crickets and aflatoxin? I also have bearded dragons, which their diet is cricket heavy, so now I am worried about feeding three of my babies the wrong thing.

Thanks in advance. Much loves to GC.

Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: ] #284290
05/11/07 02:28 AM
05/11/07 02:28 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 11,158
Tampa, FL
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Glideritis Anonymous
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Tampa, FL
I have given up crickets … just cause .. I can not feel safe about them ….


* ~ * John * ~ * Sorry store is closed at this time.. <br>
Link -> ~~ XtremeGlider ~~ Home of the original Re~set Toys! ~~ <br>
Oct 2012 update.. miss my gliders and my
glider family and think of my friends often!!!
Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Xglider] #284365
05/11/07 09:35 AM
05/11/07 09:35 AM

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Aflatoxins are produced by a fungus that grows in certain crops (wheat, corn, soybeans, peanuts, tree nuts, etc), obviously when conditions are right for fungal growth (ie. humidity, warmth). Most crickets are raised on a corn based bedding. Once it gets moist, there's a chance for that mold/fungus to grow. I believe it also binds to the DNA, so even after several generations, it's still in your crickets.

Aflatoxin is toxic (acute exposure leads to liver damage) and a carcinogen. While it may be a small chance that your crickets even have the toxin, several have decided against feeding them altogether. I know there is at least one member that lost gliders due to this (can't remember who, though).

Check out wikipedia if looking for more info-
aflatoxins

This is also the reason corn cob bedding should not be used!

Last edited by aproductof; 05/11/07 09:36 AM.
Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: ] #286794
05/14/07 01:08 PM
05/14/07 01:08 PM

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Thanks for the really great news! Now I feel absolutely stupid about feeding my babies crickets. Now I know-be on the safe side; No CRICKETS! (Yipes, they love them so, gotta be firm!)

Thanks you guys!

Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: ] #288910
05/16/07 03:36 PM
05/16/07 03:36 PM
Joined: Apr 1999
Posts: 5,336
Bee-Bopping round SnakePit USA
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Serious Glideritis
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Ellen, I hope you don't mind me bringing this back up..
Ellen and Bruse Lost a bunch of gliders due to aflatoxin poisoning, they did extensive work in spite of their pain, to help educate those of us, that had no clue at the time.

These are the three posts in order of the whole ordel


7/30/01
http://www.glidercentral.net/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/115623/page/87#Post115623


8/17/01
http://www.glidercentral.net/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/115735/page/87#Post115735


10/3/01
http://www.glidercentral.net/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/4938/page/87#Post4938




Last edited by sugarlope; 09/11/08 03:28 PM. Reason: updated links
Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Bourbon] #288915
05/16/07 03:39 PM
05/16/07 03:39 PM
Joined: Apr 1999
Posts: 5,336
Bee-Bopping round SnakePit USA
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Serious Glideritis
Bourbon  Offline
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Joined: Apr 1999
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also Ellen also made a post to help another vet try to determine from the lab results what the liver would look like.

here is what she wrote..

Quote:
If your vet is interested in finding out what a liver looks like with Aflatoxins ask him for his fax number and I will fax as many reports on this as he wants. It may be able to bring things into focus for him.

Here is part of what an H&E report would look like regarding the liver.

[Microscopic Diagnosis:

Liver: Markedly severe, chronic, diffuse, hepatopathy characterized by (in order of severity) focal to zonal hepatic necrosis, biliary hperplasia with bridging (or non bridging) portal fibrosis, megalocytosis mecronodular hepatocellular regeneraton, focal vacuolar degeneration and cholestasis.

Heart: Focal, acute, fibrinopurulent, endocarditis with thrombosis and locally adjacent fibrinopurulant pericarditis.]

On gross necropsy this glider demonstrated markedly severe non-inflammatory lesions most suggestive of a toxic hepatopathy. Sterotypical lessions of chronic hepatotoxicity demonstrated by this liver include focal necrosis,fibrosis bile duct hyperplasia, and cholestasis.
This is most frequently associated with chronic aflatoxin or pyrrolizine alkaloid ingestion.

All of the ones Bruce has read and other Pathologist have read are like the above (but with more detail).. With the exceptions of accidental deaths and those who died of protozonites.

The liver seems to be a very effected organ in this little ones.

From reading your earlier post when your glider was found so ill, I think if you go back and check several of us suggested that it could be aflatoxins.

What ever bugs you have on hand now I would destroy and not give any to your others for a period of time. Also suggested you increase the herptivite to 2 teaspoons per batch for the next month.

I am so sorry this has happened to you. I am sorry for all of us..The way you found your little one was the way mine all died. Except I found them on the perch and held them for a couple of hours while they died. The finial stage was mouth breathing and instability. They never left my hand.

I hope this information will be helpful to you and your vet. Please feel free to call me if you or the vet (or lab) have any questions. 757-340-6768.

Again, I am so very sorry.

Ellen

Last edited by Bourbon; 05/16/07 03:48 PM.
Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Bourbon] #288918
05/16/07 03:41 PM
05/16/07 03:41 PM
Joined: Apr 1999
Posts: 5,336
Bee-Bopping round SnakePit USA
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Serious Glideritis
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I have to say.. I sooooo miss the days of yesterday...

but so glad this info was never lost..
Eddie could you compile this to make a sticky on the crickets and aflatoxin??

I know Ellen has updated info to add to this, of changes and precautions in their diet of those that did survive.

Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Bourbon] #288927
05/16/07 03:48 PM
05/16/07 03:48 PM

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I'm glad you brought it up, and if anything, posts like this are educational and really do help..
I knew at least one person had lost glider because of this, and I've always been interested in the details, but never knew where to find them. And even as you said, when they were posted, although sad, it was a means to educate others. I guess actual stories are better than the claims I'm guilty of making-- ie. "a GC member, don't know who or when or any details, lost gliders because of this". It's good to bring these things back up from time to time, so that others still understand the dangers behind certain things. There's lists upon lists of things that are dangerous to suggies, and it gets to the point where much of it justseems to be heresay--so I often wonder WHY or HOW it came to be a known glider hazard.
Unfortunately, with gliders still being so new to the pet world, we're still forced to learn of the dangers to gliders by mistake. The best we can do is continue to share the good with the bad, and hope the point gets across to others.

Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: ] #288993
05/16/07 04:58 PM
05/16/07 04:58 PM
Joined: Aug 1999
Posts: 7,603
Virginia Beach, VA.
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This is hard as I have tried to forget but can't.

I still stay in contact with the folks I spoke with then and there are NO new changes. The Dr's (Toxicologist) say that the farms are just too lazy and loose too much money to black light all their crickets and mealies. It is a big money making business, as I have been told by farms.

I DO NOT feed Crickets or any other bugs. I lost 7 of my babies in less than 10 days and one diet while I was at the SGGA in TN. I still have several more that were exposed to the crickets so I have to be very carful about what treats I give. I can't give mealies because of the fat content and I know their livers are damanged so I am being ever so careful. I tried mealies a couple of years ago only a couple a few times a week and lost Homer. The vet and my husband said it was to much fat for a damanaged liver. Necropsy showed that. So that was that. NO more for us.

I had been feeding bugs for about 5 years without problems. Then in 1991 on July 4 I lost my first glider. The Tox. Dr. said it could take 2 or three months depending on the strengh of the Toxin OR if the bedding was really infected it chould take hours.

I use BML and stick to it complety excep for bugs.....of anykind. The only time I go off is when I feed treats which is only about twice a week and that is Cherrios (1/2) or a small piece of dryed fruit.

Thank you B. for bringing this up as I think people have not known or forgot. The vet. Pathologist tend to shy about from putting a lable on the necropsy with liver damange until the liver has been sent off to a lab for conformation. And most people don't want to pay for that.

If I can be of anymore help let me know. I am easy to get ahold of.

My Love


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Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Ellen] #289227
05/16/07 08:56 PM
05/16/07 08:56 PM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 16,782
St. Johns, Florida
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St. Johns, Florida
I just had two of my customers loose their glider to aflatoxin.

They could not afford to send the liver off but they wanted to know the cause of death. I assisted the vet with the necropsy and asked him to send the liver off to be checked out. We got the report back today.

Although there was a fatty tissue around the heart that is believed to be the cause of Congestive heart failure, the liver was in VERY bad shape and the results we got back today was much like the one that is posted above. The cause of the liver damage was aflatoxin.

These people do not feed crickets, however, there have been times when the mother watched them while they were out of town and forgot to remove the food dishes from the night before and found the gliders eating left overs. Of course they thought it would be no big deal but according to the vet, he suspects that is exactly how they got it.

I also refuse to feed crickets to my guys even though I know what my crickets are raised in. I guess I am just too paranoid.


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If you want to know what a person is like, watch how he treats others.

You'll never know what the outcome is if you don't step up and try.

Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Srlb] #289313
05/16/07 10:41 PM
05/16/07 10:41 PM
Joined: Aug 1999
Posts: 7,603
Virginia Beach, VA.
Ellen Offline
Owner:Emeritus-Mother Hen
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Posts: 7,603
Virginia Beach, VA.
PARANOID????? Try beinging realilist. Alfatoxin can occur in many ways. The ways we saw it was bugs. But my goodness Look it up on Gooogle or whatever. This is a KILLER.

Trust me I have a box full of gliders that have been crematated sitting on a Table.

If there is any question then you really need to head the words that are spoken.

Last edited by Ellen; 05/17/07 11:21 PM.

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Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Ellen] #290012
05/17/07 06:05 PM
05/17/07 06:05 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 659
Hernando, MS - USA
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Charlie and Mary H lost some gliders to aflatoxin by feeding human grade peanuts that they had purchased at a grocery store.


Becky
Guardian of Stryder,
my Grandson's Sugar Glider
Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Anmaw] #290296
05/17/07 11:23 PM
05/17/07 11:23 PM
Joined: Aug 1999
Posts: 7,603
Virginia Beach, VA.
Ellen Offline
Owner:Emeritus-Mother Hen
Ellen  Offline
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Joined: Aug 1999
Posts: 7,603
Virginia Beach, VA.
I know and they aren't the only ones. It is very sad. Peanuts are or can be a big killer too.

Do a search on AFLATOXIN and it will give you a list of what and how it can grow and kill.


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Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Ellen] #290345
05/18/07 12:05 AM
05/18/07 12:05 AM
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 376
Walker (56484), Minnesota, USA...
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Posts: 376
Walker (56484), Minnesota, USA...
This sounds like really scarey stuff.
I had heard not to feed peanuts, but I didn't know about crickets.
I feed my gerbil crickets all the time. It's good protien for them when they are running around.
Do you think she could get sick too??
=(


Fly (rescued gerbil)
Luna, Cibil, Newbie (gerbils)
Koda (rescued dog)
Minket & Angel (rescued cats)
Poseidon (walmart betta)
Heron (semi-rescued treefrog)
Suggies coming soon! =D
Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: Shuttershade] #290363
05/18/07 12:34 AM
05/18/07 12:34 AM

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I've always wondered about why aflatoxins never really became a large issue with reptiles and amphibians over time. You'd think that the issue of aflatoxins would alarm the herptile community and impact it more than the glider community, seeing as crickets are mainly marketed to feed (and more commonly feed) the multitudinous insectivorous pet reptiles and amphibians out there (as well as other animals). I remember someone posting a link regarding an isolated circumstance, but it always puzzled me as to why it has seemed to acquire much more attention within the glider community than within that of the herps.

Someone in the past suggested that the reptiles and amphibians had some immunity to the aflatoxin, but I'm not sure I'm ready to deem that plausible, as many herps can indeed be sensitive to a variety of toxins. Another suggested that reptile/amphibian folks may not attribute reptile deaths to aflatoxin because many of them don't do necropsies for lizards they may have paid $12 for, for instance. That's a bit more believable, however, I don't know about that either, because there are still thousands upon thousands of reptile/amphibian enthusiasts who would do necropsies on their animals, especially on the more exotic or expensive ones.

Either way, I'm not doubting the danger of aflatoxins to gliders, but doesn't anyone wonder at all? Just mentally barfing again for someone to eat up or clean up! laugh

Mikey dance

Re: So Question on Crickets and Aflatoxin [Re: ] #290369
05/18/07 12:48 AM
05/18/07 12:48 AM

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EEEeeewwwwee, Mikey, I could have done without that last mental image. tounge

When Jeepers died last summer, I had a necropsy done and she had damage in several different organs. The pathology report suggested aflatoxin as a cause for the characteristic liver damage, but I always doubted it because I almost never fed crickets (yes, note the "almost") and because it seemed so many of her organs contained pathology. However, reading the report from Ellen's post, it does sound very similar. I remember seeing the endocarditis, I think. I'd have to go back and look, but add me to the list of people who lost a glider, most likely to aflatoxin. frown


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