Reptiles of Australia

Australian Herpetology Website (Reptiles and Amphibians)

Covering Snakes and Lizards, Crocodiles ,Turtles,and Amphibians, including Colubrid snakes, Pythons, Elapids (called Cobras or Coral Snakes in some countries), Sea Snakes, File Snakes, Blind (or Worm) Snakes, Sea Turtles, Freshwater Turtles (or Tortoises) Dragon Lizards (Agamas), Geckos, Legless Lizards Monitor Lizards (often called Goannas in Australia), Skinks and other Reptile species.



 Snake Lizard other reptile or related image being displayed at Australian Herpetology website. Copyright laws may cover the use of this picture.

(Ophidian Paramyxovirus or OPMV) and SUNSHINE VIRUS

John Fowler & Rachel Barnes

Mainly affecting Vipers (Not native to Australia), Ferlavirus has also been found reported (possibly in error?) in other snakes including pythons colubrids and elapids (front fanged snakes). This disease can wipe out large numbers of snakes in a collection very quickly.

Up to the time of writing this (May 2012) no snake has tested positive to Ferlavirus in Australia. The virus that has sometimes been mistaken for Ferlavirus in Australia, appears to be a new virus called the Sunshine Virus. At this stage there is very little information available about the Sunshine virus, however it appears to be similar to Ferlavirus in many ways.

Both the Sunshine Virus (named after the Sunshine Coast,Qld. Australia) and the Ferlavirus, (Named after the Fer de Lance Viper) are types of Paramyxovirus)

Paramyxovirus Information. Aka OPMV
Reptile Forums UK

Ophidian Paramyxovirus (OPMV)
University of Florida


Basic information about the Sunshine Virus:-

- It is a serious disease that may wipe out an entire collection.

-It is spread by direct contact and aerosols.

-Snakes carrying the disease may show no symptoms.

- If you think you may have the disease in your collection or have an unexplained death - quarantine your entire collection.

-Quarantine any new snakes for 3-6 months or longer

-Clean and feed quarantined snakes after other reptiles

-Check the OPMV links at the bottom of this page to get an idea of possible symptoms which may be similar.


Quarantining Reptiles
Herp Center - Richard Brooks

The Importance of Quarantine - New Outbreak of 'Sunshine Virus'
Aussie Pythons and Snakes - (Membership may be needed)

Other Links of Interest

John Fowler


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Updated October 14, 2017

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