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Disease Kills Dozens of Captive Alligators

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Dozens of captive alligators have died in Florida in recent months from a disease that researchers said could threaten their estimated 1.5 million counterparts in the wild. Officials performed necropsies, animal versions of autopsies, and found the animals had been infected with a new strain of mycoplasma bacteria, which can cause arthritis and pneumonia in humans and animals. The disease compromises their immune systems and allows other secondary bacterial or viral invaders to kill them.


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