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Old 07-30-2014, 03:36 AM
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Default The definition of Frog Free

I am curious what exactly do people consider frog free? Lets say you are growing a plant in a vivarium with frogs. Then you want to take some out to sell it. When is it frog free?

The purest definition would probably be something like take a cutting, bleach it, root it, and let it grow for a month. But this cannot be practical for many situations, such as orchids that need to be divided. And some plants won't take a bleach treatment that would actually be bad enough to take out some pathogens.


On top of that I would be curious to hear what vendors and others are doing.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:04 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Frog-free is pretty clear: means grown in a setup with out frogs. Ex: I order a plant from a vendor; take some cuttings and grow them out in a set up without animals--FROG FREE.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:57 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Offhand I'd prolly say six months sans frogs (or other capable host) would be venturing into frog free territory -subject of course to revision
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:45 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by Groundhog View Post
Frog-free is pretty clear: means grown in a setup with out frogs. Ex: I order a plant from a vendor; take some cuttings and grow them out in a set up without animals--FROG FREE.
The main point of frog free is that people do not want to spread pathogens from someone else's frogs to theirs AFAIK. There are various plants that can root and grow to a salable size in a month or less. And conditions for growth of plants could bring many plants into this range. So what good would a plant that is salable as a rooted plant be if lets say it had only been out of the dart frog enclosure for 3 weeks. Would you feel comfortable putting that plant right in with your dart frogs? I assume the main motivation for having frog free plants is because people want to hasten introduction into enclosures with frogs and likely to skip a bleach treatment.

Also if I take a plant out of a dart frog enclosure, the whole thing and do not take a cutting and leave it for 1 year is it then frog free? What about shorter time points?

I find this to be a very murky subject and was having trouble searching for it. There are claims that Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis can last 3 months in soil to use an example that everyone is scared of. (fear mongering is the best way to get a reaction right?) So how would that play in if say you took a cutting and spores were on the leaf and washed into the soil with a misting? You could easily get many plants into a good sized specimen in 3 months or less.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:51 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

For me, 'frog free' doesn't include cuttings that spent any time in an enclosure with animals, even if it is several months down the road.
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Old 07-30-2014, 10:04 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

It would be important to know the provenance of the cuttings. For example, I take cuttings of ficus from my vivs with frogs, I put them in water and when the roots sprout, I pot them. Those cuttings and this new plant (which grows sizable in two or three months long) is not "frog-free".
Before putting some cuttings of this new plant, I sanitize them with bleach and water - but only cuttings, not the potted plant.
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Old 07-30-2014, 01:25 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

I agree with Dane....Frog free is either the parent plant and cuttings from that plant have never been exposed....

Once in a vivarium with frogs neither the plant or cuttings could or should be considered frog free no matter the time scale.
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Old 07-30-2014, 03:13 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by Azurel View Post
I agree with Dane....Frog free is either the parent plant and cuttings from that plant have never been exposed....

Once in a vivarium with frogs neither the plant or cuttings could or should be considered frog free no matter the time scale.
This I disagree with only b/c a plant grown elsewhere for quite some time should be safe if its treated at some point along the journey post frog exposure. I am unsure of that time frame but I'd have a hard time believing that after 18 mos post frog exposure and having been bleached, I would be surprised if it were unsafe.

I do agree though that the best route is just plants that have never been in contact with frogs period. Perhaps people who have plants that have had significant amount of time away from frogs and have been treated should make that known when trading or selling the plants.
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Old 07-30-2014, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

To me, frog free means never in a viv with frogs. If you take a frog plant and sanitize it and grow it out, it's not frog free, it's a frog plant that is grown out and sanitized. If I give you a plant and tell you it's frog free, that means that it has never been in a viv with frogs. Otherwise, I'll let you know that it's a cleaned up frog plant and to use at your own risk.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:12 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Frog free: has never touched a Vivarium with frogs in it

I would even go so far as to suggest that the plants be reasonably separate from the frog room/vivariums with frogs. There is always risk of cross contamination from escaped flies, misters, hands, etc.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:24 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

I think there is a world of difference between "frog free" and "frog safe". Frog free is frog free. Anything less seems like we are re-defining the words. Why don't we just say "frog safe" if the plants have been in with frogs.

I was curious to hear the opinion of somebody outside of the hobby, so I asked my wife, who keeps a safe distance from the hobby, the following question, "If you were entering the hobby, and considering purchasing plants advertised as, "Frog Free", what would that mean to you?".
She replied, "I would think it meant that they had never been in a tank with frogs in it".
I asked if there was any length of time that you could change that definition.
She replied immediately, "No".

Personally, all of my plants are grown IN frog enclosures, and I point that out in any ads. I treat all of the plants I purchase as if they had been in frog tanks, no matter where I get them.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:28 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumilo View Post
I think there is a world of difference between "frog free" and "frog safe". Frog free is frog free. Anything less seems like we are re-defining the words. Why don't we just say "frog safe" if the plants have been in with frogs.

I was curious to hear the opinion of somebody outside of the hobby, so I asked my wife, who keeps a safe distance from the hobby, the following question, "If you were entering the hobby, and considering purchasing plants advertised as, "Frog Free", what would that mean to you?".
She replied, "I would think it meant that they had never been in a tank with frogs in it".
I asked if there was any length of time that you could change that definition.
She replied immediately, "No".

Personally, all of my plants are grown IN frog enclosures, and I point that out in any ads. I treat all of the plants I purchase as if they had been in frog tanks, no matter where I get them.
Exactly. Couldn't have said it better myself. The definition is right in the word...
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:45 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

I think this is really splitting hairs. If you really want to be picky, no plant is "frog free". Being involved in plant industries both at a commercial and hobby level has led me to walk through numerous greenhouses, and there isn't a time that I can remember when I have NOT seen a wild Hylid or Ranid (some are supposed asymptomatic carriers of Bd) near the plants. So what makes a plant that originates from a nursery any more frog free than a cutting out of a tank?
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:46 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

That was my point as well.....

The thing is what infectious diseases or bacteria can live through a bleach scrub? How long can they live outside the host?....If a plant has been in a vivarium and is pulled and grown out if there is a pathogen does it stay where it is? Or does/can it travel up and down the plant? So, if it travels it could very well be on that cutting you just cut off....I don't know for sure I'm sure Ed has some ideas....Ed?

I think it is safer to keep a strict definition of "frog free" then to try and parce words.....Anything outside of that definition brings a slight risk and preventative protocols.....

Shoot in reality, frog free doesnt mean that there isn't something that could infect your frogs only way to absolutely sure would be the plant grown in a sterile environment....But I don't or am not that paranoid....I try to clean them to the best of my ability and fate does the rest......
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Last edited by Azurel; 07-30-2014 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:09 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

I would tend to consider it anything that was not grown in a terrarium with live frogs as residents. Either way ya slice it it is unrealistic to think that any plant or object for that matter, should not be appropriately treated, if not bleach or a hydrogen peroxide solution, minimally a CO2 bomb. Especially when you consider that nearly if not everything grown outdoors, even screen rooms such as mine, will be subject to naturaly occuring organisms, including some vertebrates. It is also, as expected, subject to human error. When I worked in a hospital, and even an organization for Boids, we had what were called Universal Precautions. As far as we were concerned, everything was a potential vector. Everything had the potential for disease. It was to be safe, not paranoid.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:48 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Working backwards.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Azurel View Post
The thing is what infectious diseases or bacteria can live through a bleach scrub?
Yes, all it takes is for it to be sheltered in a section of the plant that doesn't have contact with the solution. For example, bromeliads hold water.... as a consequence those areas are going to shelter or protect organisms. People often fail to understand that there can be gaps or crevices that retain an area that is not penetrated by the disinfectant solution.
These can be found in many sections of the plants such as growth points where leaves are furled or where there is branches off of the stems.. basically anyplace that the disinfectant doesn't penetrate.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Azurel View Post
How long can they live outside the host?....
Months to years depending on the parasite or pathogen. For some, there is no endpoint (example Rhabdiform nematodes) as they produce free living and parasitic larvae.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Azurel View Post
If a plant has been in a vivarium and is pulled and grown out if there is a pathogen does it stay where it is? Or does/can it travel up and down the plant?
Depends on the parasite/pathogen in question and the conditions under which it is allowed to grow out. For example, Rhabdiform nematodes can travel to all surfaces if the humidity is sufficient.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Azurel View Post
Shoot in reality, frog free doesnt mean that there isn't something that could infect your frogs only way to absolutely sure would be the plant grown in a sterile environment....But I don't or am not that paranoid....I try to clean them to the best of my ability and fate does the rest......
Correct.
As I've noted before, the hobby does a lot of things that they believe are effective but in reality accomplish little if anything at all or are negatives. Now trading/selling plants from enclosures inhabited by frogs is a problem as you are able to directly transfer pathogens between enclosures, this is a risk of novel as well as established pathogens/parasites. Many people trade cuttings from frog tanks and do not engage in any form of program to see if parasites or pathogens are popping up in the enclosures. This is a major problem but given that people put moss, wood, collected termites etc into their enclosures without appropriate cleaning/disinfection, it's more like shutting the cage door after the frog escapes. Half-a$$ed procedures can be worse than nothing at all because people feel like they've done something when in reality they have effectively done the same thing as someone who hasn't done anything at all.

If your going to buy/trade for plant cuttings from established tanks then you need to at the very least test for parasites/pathogens twice a year. If you don't then your not doing what you need to keep the frogs safe.....

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Old 07-30-2014, 06:52 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

I think Pumilo has hit the mark distinguishing between 'frog-free' and 'frog-safe'. The fact, then, that plants are grown in greenhouses, or in places where they may be contaminated, in my opinion, it is another matter. Unfortunately I do not think that there are for sale plants grown "in vitro", absolutely safe.
Then it might be 'free-frog': plants that do not come from vivs with frogs; 'frog-safe': plants that can also come from viv with frogs, but sanitized.
With regard to pathogens, Ed said it all in a comprehensive manner.
But there is another question. I buy plants from specialized sites, here in Europe, but as they are 'frog-free' (or at least I hope), it does not mean that there are other pests, such as snails and/or nemerteans.
I hope I have expressed properly my thoughts.
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Old 07-30-2014, 08:41 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spaff View Post
I think this is really splitting hairs. If you really want to be picky, no plant is "frog free". Being involved in plant industries both at a commercial and hobby level has led me to walk through numerous greenhouses, and there isn't a time that I can remember when I have NOT seen a wild Hylid or Ranid (some are supposed asymptomatic carriers of Bd) near the plants. So what makes a plant that originates from a nursery any more frog free than a cutting out of a tank?
A very good point.
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Old 08-01-2014, 05:39 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

So one would then say there is no accepted or standard definition of frog free?

I would also be hesitant to describe plants as frog safe as that would be almost more dangerous a description.

If we formally defined frog free or came up with a set of restrictions that would put them at a level of highly unlikely to transmit known dart frog pathogens I think that would be the best thing.

I mean if I could say a cutting, bleached, and rooted, 3 months out of a vivarium is frog free would that be fair? 6 months? 9 months? Should we require it be bleached and what would the bleach parameters be?
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Old 08-01-2014, 07:14 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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So one would then say there is no accepted or standard definition of frog free?

I would also be hesitant to describe plants as frog safe as that would be almost more dangerous a description.

If we formally defined frog free or came up with a set of restrictions that would put them at a level of highly unlikely to transmit known dart frog pathogens I think that would be the best thing.

I mean if I could say a cutting, bleached, and rooted, 3 months out of a vivarium is frog free would that be fair? 6 months? 9 months? Should we require it be bleached and what would the bleach parameters be?
Frog free means never in a frog tank, they're advertised as such or with the warning, not frog free-take appropriate measures. I don't want people to advertise anything that's been with frogs at any point as frog free. I feel like this is already defined, plus reinforced by several reputable sources above. Frog free is FROG FREE. Most people have their own methods of prepping plants so don't bother trying to clean them.
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Old 08-01-2014, 08:22 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by L8apex View Post
Frog free means never in a frog tank, they're advertised as such or with the warning, not frog free-take appropriate measures. I don't want people to advertise anything that's been with frogs at any point as frog free. I feel like this is already defined, plus reinforced by several reputable sources above. Frog free is FROG FREE. Most people have their own methods of prepping plants so don't bother trying to clean them.
I am not sure this is reasonable in fact it seems nave. Most of the plants I have seen in the hobby are propagated through cuttings. In fact you see almost no talk of people pollinating or raising from seeds in our plant forum. Chances are a large number of the plants that are sold as frog free are not by your definition. Maybe what you mean to say is that under your care the plant was never in a dart frog vivarium? But even if you say this we would still need to define a timeline as several sponsors and hobbyist buy plants from various sources then resell them. In all cases there should be some minimum time that you "know" it has not been in contact with frogs.
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Old 08-01-2014, 10:50 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Just what I said above, when I wrote I buy plants (from sites specialized in terraristic stuff) hoping that they are "free frog." But who can assure me that the cuttings from which the plant originated do not come from viv with frogs? In this case they would not be "frog free".
Plants I can buy in the store or in the greenhouse, such as ficus pumila, syngonium, pothos, selaginella and the like, on the other hand, they may have to be treated with fertilizers or other. In this case they would not be "frog-safe".
Only safe alternative, IMO, would be to buy plants grown "in vitro".
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Old 08-01-2014, 05:39 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
. In all cases there should be some minimum time that you "know" it has not been in contact with frogs.
Why given that a length of time is no guarantee that they are free of anything? For example, you could have Rhabdiform nematodes which can persist with the plant as long as there is moisture easily for years...

Why are you focusing only on frog free? Caudates and caecilians both can carry pathogens/parasites that can infect frogs. So why is it okay to put wood, moss and/or collected termites in the cages while focusing primarily on the plants?
Realistically none of those can be disinfected effectively and this also includes plants.

The problem is that people are used to swapping/selling cutting from the enclosures that have inhabitants in them. People use cuttings from one tank to plant into a second cage where they then place another animal or animals. People would rather do this than purchase plants from vendors where the risk of cross contamination by contact with an amphibian is significantly reduced. Sighting a frog in a greenhouse does not mean that the plants have been in contact with the plants. Now you can't be sure that it hasn't been in contact with the one you purchase but the odds are pretty low.. this is not the case with someone growing plants inside a tank with the animals. Even if the animal didn't contact those plants directly, fruit flies and other organisms inside the cage certainly will have had contact.

Sadly people focus on the plants and ignore the fact that their enclosures leak fruit flies like a sieve causing all kinds of cross contamination or go from one tank to the next without washing hands... or add freshly collected moss.... This is something that you either deal with on all fronts or don't do it at all as to do otherwise is simply window dressing without any substance.

Either stop playing at it, or do it right. Routine fecals during the course of a year from an enclosure (doesn't have to be from all of the animals), discard all solids from a cage into a bag which is then placed inside a second bag and bleach all waste water from the cages before discarding it. These are simple practices to prevent things from getting into the environment but I have little faith that many people will do this as it is a inconvenience just like I have little faith that people will do routine fecals or will ignore the fact that bleach doesn't mean something is disinfected and will continue to add things like collected moss or termtes......

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Old 08-01-2014, 07:10 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

IMO, 'frog free' is a euphamism soley our purposes. There is no way to garauntee whether anything has or has not been exposed to frogs. I think people are getting too nit picky.
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Old 08-01-2014, 11:31 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

I think at the least "frog free" is a good bases to start....There is no absolutes when dealing with animals in a hobby or plants. But being "frog free" is atleast a start....
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Old 08-02-2014, 12:22 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

Without quoting, I concur! It is a myth that many of us follow that our frogs are safe. If someone understood the complexities at hand this wouldn't be a discussion. It would be a comparative of what works, and what doesn't!
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Old 08-02-2014, 06:10 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
I am not sure this is reasonable in fact it seems nave. Most of the plants I have seen in the hobby are propagated through cuttings. In fact you see almost no talk of people pollinating or raising from seeds in our plant forum. Chances are a large number of the plants that are sold as frog free are not by your definition. Maybe what you mean to say is that under your care the plant was never in a dart frog vivarium? But even if you say this we would still need to define a timeline as several sponsors and hobbyist buy plants from various sources then resell them. In all cases there should be some minimum time that you "know" it has not been in contact with frogs.
Haha, i say what I mean. Thanks for trying to clear that up for me, but I don't believe that propagating from clippings means the clippings were in a frog tank. If they were I wouldn't say frog-free because frogs touched them. I'm not getting into other contaminants as they don't relate to the thread. If a plant was in a frog viv, it's not frog free, is this becoming clear? I appreciate the naive reference, complete with strange punctuation. Don't let number of posts be confused with experience.

I will now, however, start to worry about buying frog free plants if people think an arbitrary amount of time (presumably in humid conditions, negating the time factor) qualifies a plant for the FF title. Actually sort of a worrisome thread
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Old 08-02-2014, 08:20 AM
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Why given that a length of time is no guarantee that they are free of anything? For example, you could have Rhabdiform nematodes which can persist with the plant as long as there is moisture easily for years...

Why are you focusing only on frog free? Caudates and caecilians both can carry pathogens/parasites that can infect frogs. So why is it okay to put wood, moss and/or collected termites in the cages while focusing primarily on the plants?
Realistically none of those can be disinfected effectively and this also includes plants.

The problem is that people are used to swapping/selling cutting from the enclosures that have inhabitants in them. People use cuttings from one tank to plant into a second cage where they then place another animal or animals. People would rather do this than purchase plants from vendors where the risk of cross contamination by contact with an amphibian is significantly reduced. Sighting a frog in a greenhouse does not mean that the plants have been in contact with the plants. Now you can't be sure that it hasn't been in contact with the one you purchase but the odds are pretty low.. this is not the case with someone growing plants inside a tank with the animals. Even if the animal didn't contact those plants directly, fruit flies and other organisms inside the cage certainly will have had contact.

Sadly people focus on the plants and ignore the fact that their enclosures leak fruit flies like a sieve causing all kinds of cross contamination or go from one tank to the next without washing hands... or add freshly collected moss.... This is something that you either deal with on all fronts or don't do it at all as to do otherwise is simply window dressing without any substance.

Either stop playing at it, or do it right. Routine fecals during the course of a year from an enclosure (doesn't have to be from all of the animals), discard all solids from a cage into a bag which is then placed inside a second bag and bleach all waste water from the cages before discarding it. These are simple practices to prevent things from getting into the environment but I have little faith that many people will do this as it is a inconvenience just like I have little faith that people will do routine fecals or will ignore the fact that bleach doesn't mean something is disinfected and will continue to add things like collected moss or termtes......

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Ed
Well this is the plant subforum and I focus on plants because they are something that cannot be treated in as many ways as other materials and they are the only thing that I commonly see come up as listed as frog free perhaps we need to make it caudate free, bug free, that is what I am getting at. However I am doing it in the context of plants. It is clear that the demand and increased valuation of plants that are frog free is a service dart froggers want, I seek to define and standardize the service. Perhaps this is because we are more comfortable hitting wood or other materials with harsher treatments or we perceive the risk of infection from a dry material as less. That is a different soap box we should not derail this thread for.


I don't agree with all or nothing. There is reasonable work and procedures and large gradient of practices, many that may fall short of perfect are still good enough to allow the hobby to function without becoming a ridiculous burden. And can do a lot to limit the spread of disease. Just as hand washing cannot guarantee you will not contract a cold it can reduce the incident. Testing every 6 months for all major known pathogens is obscenely expensive and a ridiculous burden that is not followed by anyone I know of personally in the hobby major vendor or otherwise maybe just maybe zoos do it. However bleaching plants before they go into an enclosure is reasonable for most plants. This is a game of odds and that is what I am getting at. We are not talking about guarantees we are talking about at what point is it highly unlikely that you would be passing a pathogen that is of major concern into your collection by a plant. And the only way we can have any sort of good concept of that is if we actually know by the honor and word of a person selling a plant that that plant has not come in contact with any frogs for a certain length of time and we may add other requirements such as a bleach treatment, or multiple bleach treatments I don't know that is what I want to define and standardize. However these requirements will need to be reasonable for people to do otherwise, it simply won't get done. Now the reason I belabor this is because quite frankly some of the claims people are making that they think are so clear simply are not. People have said a plant can never be in a frog vivarium, so they think the solution is buy from a green house or vendor. Yet they have no other stipulations or knowledge of the plant. By this definition, If a person buys a potho from a green house then flips it in the sale section 1 week later it is frog free, however IMO my odds of contracting a disease are higher than if I were to take a cutting from a dart frog enclosure not known to have any sick frogs for its existence, bleach it and root it for 1 year. I would feel much more confident putting the latter plant into my collection than some random plant from a vendor that may come from a green house with frogs that are asymptomatic carriers of chytrid. And no I don't have any scientific papers on that one it is just my gut feeling on the issue based on my background.

So unless people want to get into the business of trying to track the lineage of cuttings like we track frog morphs we need to have some basis to go on because as it stands we are all blindly assuming that just because a plant came from an unknown source it's better than taking one from a known source that may have had frogs. Just like feeder insects and anything else after a certain amount of time in captivity and separated from frogs it becomes incredibly unlikely that a pathogen held on and remained infective if one had it would have likely triggered a person to kill that plant and everything associated with the vivarium. However we never know for absolute certain. But we still go with it and IMO things that are somewhat effective are better than doing nothing at all.

Lets also discuss vendors. We have already had discussions on vendors and disease testing and we have seen very little of that coming out of vendors as it stands most vendors are content to simply give a warranty, your frog dies I send you a new one. On top of that many vendors are constrained for space and jam massive amounts of frogs, plants and insects into small spaces with none of the protocols in place that perhaps a zoo would have for proper isolations. And I have personally witnessed almost all vendors handling with their bare hands, supplies, plants, frogs without sanitation between handlings at shows. Insects, plants, frogs, a small space as you have said yourself this is a recipe for transmission. So why are we so certain that buying from vendors is any better than buying from hobbyist? IMO its not about buying from vendors or hobbyist, its about developing a standard procedure and getting people to go with it regardless of if they are a dart frog vendor, hobbyist, or greenhouse. If you want to tack on such as hand washing, or nitrile gloves or anything else. I am asking you to make that known here so we can get people to follow the protocol. Or if we aren't going to go all or nothing then lets do it and say frog free is a BS term and it needs to end now.


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Originally Posted by L8apex View Post
Haha, i say what I mean. Thanks for trying to clear that up for me, but I don't believe that propagating from clippings means the clippings were in a frog tank. If they were I wouldn't say frog-free because frogs touched them. I'm not getting into other contaminants as they don't relate to the thread. If a plant was in a frog viv, it's not frog free, is this becoming clear? I appreciate the naive reference, complete with strange punctuation. Don't let number of posts be confused with experience.

I will now, however, start to worry about buying frog free plants if people think an arbitrary amount of time (presumably in humid conditions, negating the time factor) qualifies a plant for the FF title. Actually sort of a worrisome thread
So you are saying that in order for a plant to qualify as frog free, it can NEVER, EVER have been in a frog tank? And there is no known or unknown amount of time or treatment that would qualify any plant that was ever in a frog tank as being frog free?

What if you had a plant like this long in a frog tank, AAABBBCCCDDDDTip
and you clipped off DDDTip? Then you bleached, and rooted it and it grew it up to DDDDEEEEFFFGGGtip, ten you clipped off GGGTip. You would say that GGGTip cannot be called frog free? What if we get to ZZZZtip? 10 years? What if someone has a plant in a green house and a local frog jumps on it, then they sell it to a vendor who sells it next week for 3x price? Frog free or not?
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Old 08-02-2014, 02:55 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Well this is the plant subforum and I focus on plants because they are something that cannot be treated in as many ways as other materials and they are the only thing that I commonly see come up as listed as frog free perhaps we need to make it caudate free, bug free, that is what I am getting at. However I am doing it in the context of plants. It is clear that the demand and increased valuation of plants that are frog free is a service dart froggers want, I seek to define and standardize the service. Perhaps this is because we are more comfortable hitting wood or other materials with harsher treatments or we perceive the risk of infection from a dry material as less. That is a different soap box we should not derail this thread for.


I don't agree with all or nothing. There is reasonable work and procedures and large gradient of practices, many that may fall short of perfect are still good enough to allow the hobby to function without becoming a ridiculous burden. And can do a lot to limit the spread of disease. Just as hand washing cannot guarantee you will not contract a cold it can reduce the incident. Testing every 6 months for all major known pathogens is obscenely expensive and a ridiculous burden that is not followed by anyone I know of personally in the hobby major vendor or otherwise maybe just maybe zoos do it. However bleaching plants before they go into an enclosure is reasonable for most plants. This is a game of odds and that is what I am getting at. We are not talking about guarantees we are talking about at what point is it highly unlikely that you would be passing a pathogen that is of major concern into your collection by a plant. And the only way we can have any sort of good concept of that is if we actually know by the honor and word of a person selling a plant that that plant has not come in contact with any frogs for a certain length of time and we may add other requirements such as a bleach treatment, or multiple bleach treatments I don't know that is what I want to define and standardize. However these requirements will need to be reasonable for people to do otherwise, it simply won't get done. Now the reason I belabor this is because quite frankly some of the claims people are making that they think are so clear simply are not. People have said a plant can never be in a frog vivarium, so they think the solution is buy from a green house or vendor. Yet they have no other stipulations or knowledge of the plant. By this definition, If a person buys a potho from a green house then flips it in the sale section 1 week later it is frog free, however IMO my odds of contracting a disease are higher than if I were to take a cutting from a dart frog enclosure not known to have any sick frogs for its existence, bleach it and root it for 1 year. I would feel much more confident putting the latter plant into my collection than some random plant from a vendor that may come from a green house with frogs that are asymptomatic carriers of chytrid. And no I don't have any scientific papers on that one it is just my gut feeling on the issue based on my background.

So unless people want to get into the business of trying to track the lineage of cuttings like we track frog morphs we need to have some basis to go on because as it stands we are all blindly assuming that just because a plant came from an unknown source it's better than taking one from a known source that may have had frogs. Just like feeder insects and anything else after a certain amount of time in captivity and separated from frogs it becomes incredibly unlikely that a pathogen held on and remained infective if one had it would have likely triggered a person to kill that plant and everything associated with the vivarium. However we never know for absolute certain. But we still go with it and IMO things that are somewhat effective are better than doing nothing at all.

Lets also discuss vendors. We have already had discussions on vendors and disease testing and we have seen very little of that coming out of vendors as it stands most vendors are content to simply give a warranty, your frog dies I send you a new one. On top of that many vendors are constrained for space and jam massive amounts of frogs, plants and insects into small spaces with none of the protocols in place that perhaps a zoo would have for proper isolations. And I have personally witnessed almost all vendors handling with their bare hands, supplies, plants, frogs without sanitation between handlings at shows. Insects, plants, frogs, a small space as you have said yourself this is a recipe for transmission. So why are we so certain that buying from vendors is any better than buying from hobbyist? IMO its not about buying from vendors or hobbyist, its about developing a standard procedure and getting people to go with it regardless of if they are a dart frog vendor, hobbyist, or greenhouse. If you want to tack on such as hand washing, or nitrile gloves or anything else. I am asking you to make that known here so we can get people to follow the protocol. Or if we aren't going to go all or nothing then lets do it and say frog free is a BS term and it needs to end now.




So you are saying that in order for a plant to qualify as frog free, it can NEVER, EVER have been in a frog tank? And there is no known or unknown amount of time or treatment that would qualify any plant that was ever in a frog tank as being frog free?

What if you had a plant like this long in a frog tank, AAABBBCCCDDDDTip
and you clipped off DDDTip? Then you bleached, and rooted it and it grew it up to DDDDEEEEFFFGGGtip, ten you clipped off GGGTip. You would say that GGGTip cannot be called frog free? What if we get to ZZZZtip? 10 years? What if someone has a plant in a green house and a local frog jumps on it, then they sell it to a vendor who sells it next week for 3x price? Frog free or not?
That looked long, we can try to discern the history of every plant we work with, or stop throwing the term frog free around. This has officially bored me. You're on a mission I don't understand, have fun with it
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Old 08-02-2014, 05:12 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Well this is the plant subforum and I focus on plants because they are something that cannot be treated in as many ways as other materials and they are the only thing that I commonly see come up as listed as frog free perhaps we need to make it caudate free, bug free, that is what I am getting at. However I am doing it in the context of plants. It is clear that the demand and increased valuation of plants that are frog free is a service dart froggers want, I seek to define and standardize the service. Perhaps this is because we are more comfortable hitting wood or other materials with harsher treatments or we perceive the risk of infection from a dry material as less. That is a different soap box we should not derail this thread for.
Your attempting to restrict the discussion but by doing so your ignoring a huge problem. With respect to the other things people gather and add to the enclosures, your comment on bug or caduate free in addition to frog focuses solely on larger problem contaminants. You have to also consider that mosses, leaves, wood etc can also carry pathogens such as Rhabidiform nematodes, and cocccidians.

The comments about it being a different soap box is not accurate as it's the same soapbox. The so called "harsher" treatments for those materials is just as ineffective as that used for plants. This is discussed in the medical literature for both amphibians and herps. I'd have to go and dig out my copies of Amphibian Medicine and Captive Husbandry and Medical and Reptile Medicine and Surgery to get the exact quotes. It was also referenced in at least one article in the old Vivarium magazine so this is really nothing new.


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There is reasonable work and procedures and large gradient of practices, many that may fall short of perfect are still good enough to allow the hobby to function without becoming a ridiculous burden.
If it doesn't work then it is already a ridiculous burden. Sorry but the realities of the process already indicate that it has to be an all or nothing process.
Do you know the history behind people dipping plants in a bleach solution?....

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And can do a lot to limit the spread of disease. Just as hand washing cannot guarantee you will not contract a cold it can reduce the incident.
Science... Actually if you wash your hands and refrain from touching mucous membranes and things that are going to contact mucous membranes than you can virtually reduce this as a vector for transmission to pretty close to zero. The reason for this is that the cold virus can only persist on human skin for about 20 minutes because your skin isn't a suitable zone for it to survive. So your example doesn't support your argument.


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Testing every 6 months for all major known pathogens is obscenely expensive and a ridiculous burden that is not followed by anyone I know of personally in the hobby major vendor or otherwise maybe just maybe zoos do it.
Really? On what basis? It's clear you don't understand what a fecal exam actually tests for since you making this argument. And as I noted above, the fecal doesn't have to be from each animal in an enclosure... One fecal/enclosure is all that is needed.

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However bleaching plants before they go into an enclosure is reasonable for most plants. This is a game of odds and that is what I am getting at.
It's only a game of odds if it was effective more than 50% of the time. Unless you are not going to use any plants that have potential shelter points such as bends, turns, retained substrates, overlapping leaves etc it is ineffective, no odds about it. It does not give you the odds that you've done anything at all.... All it really does is give people the feeling that they've done something... and provides justification to ignore fecal exams.... Just like people still persist in keeping an animal separate with no testing to see if they are clean or not as a "reasonable" quarantine process. If your not going to walk the walk, don't try to talk the talk.

The surface of all of the plants are comprised of organics starting with the surface cuticle membrane that contains a number of waxes. As with any other organic in a bleach solution, this cuticle is going to react with the bleach, reducing the effectiveness of the disinfecting solution by diluting it...

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We are not talking about guarantees we are talking about at what point is it highly unlikely that you would be passing a pathogen that is of major concern into your collection by a plant.
How would you know if it did pass a major pathogen into the enclosure if you don't subsequently monitor the frogs for the appearance of a pathogen or parasite? Keep in mind a healthy frog can be infected but asymptomatic or one with minimal symptoms (such as shedding ova or larvae in the fecals).
To put it bluntly, you can't .. This means the assumption that your reducing risk isn't worth very much.....


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And the only way we can have any sort of good concept of that is if we actually know by the honor and word of a person selling a plant that that plant has not come in contact with any frogs for a certain length of time and we may add other requirements such as a bleach treatment, or multiple bleach treatments
Length of time as I noted in the previous post doesn't mean anything as parasites and pathogens can persist on/with a plant or enclosure for years. As a metric this attempt is useless. As I noted above, bleach treatments by themselves are worthless. The assumption is based on faulty reasoning.


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for people to do otherwise, it simply won't get done. Now the reason I belabor this is because quite frankly some of the claims people are making that they think are so clear simply are not.
You are aware this includes your argument since it is predicated on being unable to verify that the action is actually functional?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Yet they have no other stipulations or knowledge of the plant. By this definition, If a person buys a potho from a green house then flips it in the sale section 1 week later it is frog free, however IMO my odds of contracting a disease are higher than if I were to take a cutting from a dart frog enclosure not known to have any sick frogs for its existence, bleach it and root it for 1 year.
A frog that appears visually healthy does not mean that it is not actively shedding parasites or infectious pathogens into the enclosure. How are you isolating the plant? If your thinking growing it out in an tank for a year then you need to worry about cross contamination between pots/plants. So for example, if you contaminate the pot with Rhabdiform nematodes or hookworm larvae, all of the plants could be carry the parasites. If there is sufficient humidity then even cuttings aren't going to do any good since if there is sufficient humidity they can colonize the whole plant surface and can penetrate into crevices and holes in the plant to shelter themselves.

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I would feel much more confident putting the latter plant into my collection than some random plant from a vendor that may come from a green house with frogs that are asymptomatic carriers of chytrid. And no I don't have any scientific papers on that one it is just my gut feeling on the issue based on my background.
And that is based on more than one incorrect assumptions. See above.

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
So unless people want to get into the business of trying to track the lineage of cuttings like we track frog morphs we need to have some basis to go on because as it stands we are all blindly assuming that just because a plant came from an unknown source it's better than taking one from a known source that may have had frogs.
Or people could do fecals twice a year as opposed to what your offering as an extreme example.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Just like feeder insects and anything else after a certain amount of time in captivity and separated from frogs it becomes incredibly unlikely that a pathogen held on and remained infective if one had it would have likely triggered a person to kill that plant and everything associated with the vivarium. However we never know for absolute certain. But we still go with it and IMO things that are somewhat effective are better than doing nothing at all.
I'm throwing the BS flag here. Your make more unsupported assumptions see for example the life cycle of lungworms in anurans. For pathogenicity to change, the parasite/pathogen has to be able to complete it's life cycle... and this could go in either direction depending on how well it transmits to the new host..... Your making assumptions that are unsupported.

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Lets also discuss vendors. We have already had discussions on vendors and disease testing and we have seen very little of that coming out of vendors as it stands most vendors are content to simply give a warranty, your frog dies I send you a new one.
The only frog you can guarantee to be free of parasites/pathogens is a dead one that has been cultured, necropsied and sectioned for histopathology and shown to be negative after all tests are done. As you cannot do histopathology on a live frog, you cannot show it does not have encysted parasites or even coccidian infections of the GI tract. I do not see anything wrong with the guarantee as it has been proved that asymptomatic and non-shedding on a fecal or fecals frogs can still be infected and potentially infectious as they may shed on an intermittent basis.... This has been discussed before along with all of the relevant citations.... .

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
On top of that many vendors are constrained for space and jam massive amounts of frogs, plants and insects into small spaces with none of the protocols in place that perhaps a zoo would have for proper isolations.
You've just described virtually every frog room for people that have more than one tank. So, this is really not relevant to the argument.

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And I have personally witnessed almost all vendors handling with their bare hands, supplies, plants, frogs without sanitation between handlings at shows.
And I've seen it at hobbyist houses and meets... So trying to put this on the vendors is more than a little specious....

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Insects, plants, frogs, a small space as you have said yourself this is a recipe for transmission. So why are we so certain that buying from vendors is any better than buying from hobbyist? IMO its not about buying from vendors or hobbyist, its about developing a standard procedure and getting people to go with it regardless of if they are a dart frog vendor, hobbyist, or greenhouse. If you want to tack on such as hand washing, or nitrile gloves or anything else. I am asking you to make that known here so we can get people to follow the protocol. Or if we aren't going to go all or nothing then lets do it and say frog free is a BS term and it needs to end now.
Because the vendors support the actual hobby... how many people on this forum support the forum with paid advertising? How many of the average hobbyists goes through the attempts to bring new things to the hobby? Too many of the hobbyists rely on dogma as opposed to understanding the issues.

Your attempting to define the issue for convenience as opposed to what has to be done for it to have meaning.... and in the end, all that is needed for it to have real meaning is routine fecal surveillance of the enclosures. And these fecals should be read as soon as possible as opposed to sending them out. This is because some indicators of parasite infection such blood cells often do not survive the trip through the mail.

Some comments

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Old 08-02-2014, 10:40 PM
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Pubfiction, you mention costs being prohibitive. Compared to what, not doing the testing? How much are your frogs worth? What have you spent on building each viv? What do you think the vet bill will be to treat a sick animal? Would you have a necropsy done on a mysterious death in your collection? How much do you think they cost? Now add replacement cost of not only the animal, but the organic material in the enclosure must be replaced as well. On top of that you must allow for an emotional cost. It's appalling to think of all the ridiculous things we blow our money on but "no one that you know" will spend under $50 even once a year for their frogs. How many enclosures do you have? 10, 20? pick one or two enclosures and repeat every month until they're all done. If you can not budget for proper care of a captive animal, maybe you shouldn't have captive animals.
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Old 08-03-2014, 07:41 AM
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Pubfiction, you mention costs being prohibitive. Compared to what, not doing the testing? How much are your frogs worth? What have you spent on building each viv? What do you think the vet bill will be to treat a sick animal? Would you have a necropsy done on a mysterious death in your collection? How much do you think they cost? Now add replacement cost of not only the animal, but the organic material in the enclosure must be replaced as well. On top of that you must allow for an emotional cost. It's appalling to think of all the ridiculous things we blow our money on but "no one that you know" will spend under $50 even once a year for their frogs. How many enclosures do you have? 10, 20? pick one or two enclosures and repeat every month until they're all done. If you can not budget for proper care of a captive animal, maybe you shouldn't have captive animals.
Here is my break down based on previous testing.

Fecal $23
ranavirus $18
chytrid $18
sterile swabs $2
shipping and handling $5+

8 current enclosures. twice a year as Ed said, we are looking at over 1k / year.

I don't even take myself to the doctor twice a year, heck once a year. Based on my admittedly anecdotal evidence which Ed will say I cant possibly know. Not many people are doing this. People instead are looking for more cost effective preventative measures. Which is the subject at hand.
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Old 08-03-2014, 08:42 AM
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Your attempting to restrict the discussion but by doing so your ignoring a huge problem. With respect to the other things people gather and add to the enclosures, your comment on bug or caduate free in addition to frog focuses solely on larger problem contaminants. You have to also consider that mosses, leaves, wood etc can also carry pathogens such as Rhabidiform nematodes, and cocccidians.

The comments about it being a different soap box is not accurate as it's the same soapbox. The so called "harsher" treatments for those materials is just as ineffective as that used for plants. This is discussed in the medical literature for both amphibians and herps. I'd have to go and dig out my copies of Amphibian Medicine and Captive Husbandry and Medical and Reptile Medicine and Surgery to get the exact quotes. It was also referenced in at least one article in the old Vivarium magazine so this is really nothing new.
Well I would consider live moss to be plants, dried / dead moss is subject to a boil or bake the same as leaves in my case.

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If it doesn't work then it is already a ridiculous burden. Sorry but the realities of the process already indicate that it has to be an all or nothing process.
Do you know the history behind people dipping plants in a bleach solution?....
Honestly I know you say none of this works but for my N=3 several methods detailed in another thread worked really well for everything I could observe thus far. And as much as you say none of it works I don't get why methods such as baking wood are considered acceptable for things like PPQ permits. If it is killing all the pests I can observe I bet its doing damage to the others too. And IME way better than nothing.

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It's only a game of odds if it was effective more than 50% of the time. Unless you are not going to use any plants that have potential shelter points such as bends, turns, retained substrates, overlapping leaves etc it is ineffective, no odds about it. It does not give you the odds that you've done anything at all.... All it really does is give people the feeling that they've done something... and provides justification to ignore fecal exams.... Just like people still persist in keeping an animal separate with no testing to see if they are clean or not as a "reasonable" quarantine process. If your not going to walk the walk, don't try to talk the talk.

The surface of all of the plants are comprised of organics starting with the surface cuticle membrane that contains a number of waxes. As with any other organic in a bleach solution, this cuticle is going to react with the bleach, reducing the effectiveness of the disinfecting solution by diluting it...
I can say that I just don't agree with you here. I am not even sure if I can articulate it so you can understand. Because it seems in much of this you are missing the main goal while belaboring smaller points. Odds matter. Surely you are aware that some pathogens need a minimum infective number. So if you kill much of the pathogen that is on the exterior of the plant you would be reducing the odds of a frog coming in contact with an infective number. And surely you would not dispute that it is possible to kill everything even if it is not guaranteed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
How would you know if it did pass a major pathogen into the enclosure if you don't subsequently monitor the frogs for the appearance of a pathogen or parasite? Keep in mind a healthy frog can be infected but asymptomatic or one with minimal symptoms (such as shedding ova or larvae in the fecals).
To put it bluntly, you can't .. This means the assumption that your reducing risk isn't worth very much.....

Length of time as I noted in the previous post doesn't mean anything as parasites and pathogens can persist on/with a plant or enclosure for years. As a metric this attempt is useless. As I noted above, bleach treatments by themselves are worthless. The assumption is based on faulty reasoning.
Once again we are not talking about guarantees as I and you multiple times already have already pointed out there is no guarantee. So why bring it up. If a frog has been healthy and living for a long time it is a reduced risk over grabbing a plant from an enclosure with a known sick frog.

Length of time also does mean something. Because just as a few pathogens can persist many cannot, IE reduced risk.

If the bleach treatments by themselves are worthless does that mean you think that in connection with something else they are valuable? If so state it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
A frog that appears visually healthy does not mean that it is not actively shedding parasites or infectious pathogens into the enclosure. How are you isolating the plant? If your thinking growing it out in an tank for a year then you need to worry about cross contamination between pots/plants. So for example, if you contaminate the pot with Rhabdiform nematodes or hookworm larvae, all of the plants could be carry the parasites. If there is sufficient humidity then even cuttings aren't going to do any good since if there is sufficient humidity they can colonize the whole plant surface and can penetrate into crevices and holes in the plant to shelter themselves.
Well then why don't you discuss what would help. By flipping your statements around isolation of new plants, lower humidity, and cuttings could be effective?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
Or people could do fecals twice a year as opposed to what your offering as an extreme example.
So if people do fecals twice a year and they all come back negative then can they claim their plants are pathogen free?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
The only frog you can guarantee to be free of parasites/pathogens is a dead one that has been cultured, necropsied and sectioned for histopathology and shown to be negative after all tests are done. As you cannot do histopathology on a live frog, you cannot show it does not have encysted parasites or even coccidian infections of the GI tract. I do not see anything wrong with the guarantee as it has been proved that asymptomatic and non-shedding on a fecal or fecals frogs can still be infected and potentially infectious as they may shed on an intermittent basis.... This has been discussed before along with all of the relevant citations.... .
We are back to guarantees again. I am not making them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
You've just described virtually every frog room for people that have more than one tank. So, this is really not relevant to the argument.

And I've seen it at hobbyist houses and meets... So trying to put this on the vendors is more than a little specious....

Because the vendors support the actual hobby... how many people on this forum support the forum with paid advertising? How many of the average hobbyists goes through the attempts to bring new things to the hobby? Too many of the hobbyists rely on dogma as opposed to understanding the issues.

Your attempting to define the issue for convenience as opposed to what has to be done for it to have meaning.... and in the end, all that is needed for it to have real meaning is routine fecal surveillance of the enclosures. And these fecals should be read as soon as possible as opposed to sending them out. This is because some indicators of parasite infection such blood cells often do not survive the trip through the mail.

Some comments

Ed
I am not trying to put everything on vendors I am simply saying they are no different than hobbyist. It was you who singled them out and mentioned we should buy our plants from them. But why? You have spent the better part of an article worth of text pointing out that the only thing you consider a good practice is surveillance, something very few vendors claim to practice they sure are not jumping into this thread telling me I am wrong. Not that we even know when someone stops being a hobbyist and starts being a vendor anyway. I personally 100% disagree with you on this comment
Quote:
Because the vendors support the actual hobby
Hobbyist support the hobby too.


OK Ed I think you have made your point. Everything is ineffective and all of us must do fecals 2x / year. And the term frog free should be removed from the hobby as it is meaningless. Please correct me if you disagree with my synopsis of your opinion on the matter. Honestly if that's the direction people want to go I am OK with it. Then we can get over this and start telling people to stop claiming frog free in there classified, including "vendors".
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Old 08-03-2014, 03:15 PM
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I don't believe anyone suggested all of those tests be repeated twice a year. Only fecals. Personally, I believe once a year is sufficient with a static collection, and with previous negative results. Further, it has already been stated that shipping a sample is not congruent with accurate results. Find a local vet, test your animals at least once a year. Your $1k is now $184. You can't save $15/month for the health of your animals?

Preventative measures are important but will not give any usable data if the animals don't have fecals done periodically. How will you ever know if your preventative system is working if you never test it?

EDIT: I also do a random, multi-tank (yes I do use different collection tools for each enclosure) sample every 12 months that is offset to my regular testing by 6 months. In effect, I am doing fecal twice a year I suppose. If something is found, we test and treat individually. Like I said: if your collection is static and you typically see negative results, I believe my protocol is sufficient. I do not disagree with Ed. Twice a year is more prudent and has the potential to catch an infection quicker.

EDIT 2: I'm not going to go point for point with you, but I will say this. Doing something in this case is not better than doing nothing. With disease, even the tiniest speck of remaining pathogen can re-infect. Even if you believe you get a 99.9% success rate (i'm being rather generous here) you still need to test to confirm it. Doing work without checking answers is a complete waste of time. You will never find legitimate science without testing one's results.

EDIT 3: I would be willing to bet that my results from simply washing items with soap, physical inspection for pest and disease, a reasonable husbandry protocol, a strict quarantine protocol, and not reusing furniture is just as effective as your system. And with a lot less work!

EDIT 4: your self proclaimed "anecdotal evidence" IS worthless in this example. Science doesn't guess, trust other's opinions, or rely on what is apparently clear. They test, retest, retest....ad nauseum. Are you even aware of the definition of anecdotal? You can see it HERE it begins with "not necessarily true or reliable"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Here is my break down based on previous testing.

Fecal $23
ranavirus $18
chytrid $18
sterile swabs $2
shipping and handling $5+

8 current enclosures. twice a year as Ed said, we are looking at over 1k / year.

I don't even take myself to the doctor twice a year, heck once a year. Based on my admittedly anecdotal evidence which Ed will say I cant possibly know. Not many people are doing this. People instead are looking for more cost effective preventative measures. Which is the subject at hand.
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Old 08-04-2014, 06:41 PM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Well I would consider live moss to be plants, dried / dead moss is subject to a boil or bake the same as leaves in my case.
And you are aware that this doesn't mean that the material is free of parasites or pathogens? For example some species of coccidians that are pathogens of amphibians are highly resistant to the boil/bake dogma in the hobby.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Honestly I know you say none of this works but for my N=3 several methods detailed in another thread worked really well for everything I could observe thus far. And as much as you say none of it works I don't get why methods such as baking wood are considered acceptable for things like PPQ permits. If it is killing all the pests I can observe I bet its doing damage to the others too. And IME way better than nothing.
There are significant differences in heat penetration depending on the density and thickness of the wood. I've pointed this out repeatedly in the past. If your not getting the proper temperature inside the wood, then your not disinfecting or sterilizing the wood. The wood that is undergoing heat treatment is also already completely dried so that the evaporation of the water doesn't lower the temperature below what is considered an effective temperature.
The USDA program requires certification and repeat inspections both to ensure that the program is running correctly and to see if there are pests/pathogens are escaping the treatment. Hobbyists lack 1) a check on their methodology to ensure that it is effective and 2) any kind of testing to demonstrate that it was effective. As I noted above, some coccidians are highly resistant to those conditions and treatments.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
I can say that I just don't agree with you here.
Why am I not surprised?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Odds matter. Surely you are aware that some pathogens need a minimum infective number. So if you kill much of the pathogen that is on the exterior of the plant you would be reducing the odds of a frog coming in contact with an infective number. And surely you would not dispute that it is possible to kill everything even if it is not guaranteed.
Odds only matter if you have some way of verifying the results. If you cannot verify the results then you can't make a prediction of what the odds actually are so any attempt to make that claim is specious.
Some coccidians have a minimial infectious number of 1 oocyst..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Once again we are not talking about guarantees as I and you multiple times already have already pointed out there is no guarantee. So why bring it up. If a frog has been healthy and living for a long time it is a reduced risk over grabbing a plant from an enclosure with a known sick frog.
I wasn't talking about a guarantee. When your talking about odds, you are inferring/implying a risk and therefor a guarantee. If the risk of transmission approaches 1 your pretty much guaranteed that it will happen. If the odds approach zero, then it is pretty much guaranteed it to not happen. The problem you keep over looking is that you cannot make any such prediction about efficacy based on what you want to do... And no, a frog that is symptomatically "healthy" does not mean anything with respect to risk. If you pulled the frogs and necropsied them along with histopathology, you could then make a prediction on the risk of taking a plant from out of their tank.. otherwise your just whistling in the wind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Length of time also does mean something. Because just as a few pathogens can persist many cannot, IE reduced risk.
If the pathogen/parasite can persist for years how does that lower the risk over time? Some parasites are going to be actively reproducing and potentially building up to huge numbers.... Many of the frog pathogens are going to be actively reproducing and building up population numbers which can then impact the animal through exposure....
Once again, your making claims about odds that are not only unsupportable but are in conflict with what we know about some pathogens/parasites.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
If the bleach treatments by themselves are worthless does that mean you think that in connection with something else they are valuable? If so state it.
Clearly this is going to depend on what else your discussing. Otherwise nothing can be said about it's efficacy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
Well then why don't you discuss what would help. By flipping your statements around isolation of new plants, lower humidity, and cuttings could be effective?
You would have to follow the same quarante procedure that is recommended animals... which requires testing. Simply modifying the environmental conditions doesn't mean that it is working without some form of verification.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
So if people do fecals twice a year and they all come back negative then can they claim their plants are pathogen free?
Clearly your ignoring what I wrote. No, as I've noted repeatedly in the past, negative fecals only mean that the animal wasn't shedding at that moment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
We are back to guarantees again. I am not making them.
Then why did you bring it up with respect to vendors? It's pretty clear that you wanted to put the spot on them for not guaranteeing pathogen/parasite free animals....
Then why ask if two clean fecals would allow a claim of parasite/pathogen free? You claim your not talking about guarantees when you keep talking about them in a circuitous manner....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
I am not trying to put everything on vendors I am simply saying they are no different than hobbyist. It was you who singled them out and mentioned we should buy our plants from them. But why? You have spent the better part of an article worth of text pointing out that the only thing you consider a good practice is surveillance, something very few vendors claim to practice they sure are not jumping into this thread telling me I am wrong. Not that we even know when someone stops being a hobbyist and starts being a vendor anyway. I personally 100% disagree with you on this comment Hobbyist support the hobby too.
Then why does the sponsor page not list tons of people who sell frogs on the site? How many of the hobbyists are in the sponsor section of the classified ads? Sorry but the numbers don't agree with you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pubfiction View Post
OK Ed I think you have made your point. Everything is ineffective and all of us must do fecals 2x / year. And the term frog free should be removed from the hobby as it is meaningless. Please correct me if you disagree with my synopsis of your opinion on the matter. Honestly if that's the direction people want to go I am OK with it. Then we can get over this and start telling people to stop claiming frog free in there classified, including "vendors".
Clearly your missing the point. People cannot depend on bleaching etc because there is no follow up to determine whether it is effective or not. People rely on dogma, that a practice is effective and that lets them make the claim about a plant or animal. What you were attempting to establish is a definition to support the dogma, to justify what you think something should be or mean. In addition, your making an argument on price as well as claims of effectiveness... We can see this in your whole position over "odds" when there is nothing done to quantify if the practice supports the "odds". I don't foresee people changing their practices but they should be aware that the practices is really nothing but feel good activities and it is unproven and unsupported.. Dancing around the cages in a chicken suit could easily be just as effective.....

Some comments

Ed
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Old 08-04-2014, 07:50 PM
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Dancing around the cages in a chicken suit could easily be just as effective
Finally, husbandry practice that I can get on board with!
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Old 08-06-2014, 01:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post

Clearly your missing the point.

Some comments

Ed
I guess so then make your point what is a reasonable definition of frog free. In all that post I don't think you answered a single direct question I asked. What is frog free Ed, define it or refute it.


Should we bleach plants Ed? Yes or No?
What is a good bleach protocol for plants Ed. ?

Should we heat treat wood Ed? Yes or No?
If so what temperature and how long.
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Old 08-06-2014, 02:05 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

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Originally Posted by aspidites73 View Post
I don't believe anyone suggested all of those tests be repeated twice a year. Only fecals. Personally, I believe once a year is sufficient with a static collection, and with previous negative results. Further, it has already been stated that shipping a sample is not congruent with accurate results. Find a local vet, test your animals at least once a year. Your $1k is now $184. You can't save $15/month for the health of your animals?

Preventative measures are important but will not give any usable data if the animals don't have fecals done periodically. How will you ever know if your preventative system is working if you never test it?

EDIT: I also do a random, multi-tank (yes I do use different collection tools for each enclosure) sample every 12 months that is offset to my regular testing by 6 months. In effect, I am doing fecal twice a year I suppose. If something is found, we test and treat individually. Like I said: if your collection is static and you typically see negative results, I believe my protocol is sufficient. I do not disagree with Ed. Twice a year is more prudent and has the potential to catch an infection quicker.

EDIT 2: I'm not going to go point for point with you, but I will say this. Doing something in this case is not better than doing nothing. With disease, even the tiniest speck of remaining pathogen can re-infect. Even if you believe you get a 99.9% success rate (i'm being rather generous here) you still need to test to confirm it. Doing work without checking answers is a complete waste of time. You will never find legitimate science without testing one's results.

EDIT 3: I would be willing to bet that my results from simply washing items with soap, physical inspection for pest and disease, a reasonable husbandry protocol, a strict quarantine protocol, and not reusing furniture is just as effective as your system. And with a lot less work!

EDIT 4: your self proclaimed "anecdotal evidence" IS worthless in this example. Science doesn't guess, trust other's opinions, or rely on what is apparently clear. They test, retest, retest....ad nauseum. Are you even aware of the definition of anecdotal? You can see it HERE it begins with "not necessarily true or reliable"
What do you base your personal opinion of once a year on? Because Ed said twice up there do you have some non anecdotal scientific peer reviewed citation for that?
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Old 08-06-2014, 04:20 PM
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What do you base your personal opinion of once a year on? Because Ed said twice up there do you have some non anecdotal scientific peer reviewed citation for that?

As you said, it is my opinion. My opinion is based off of 20+ years of keeping and breeding 27 different species of Boid. Ed's opinion, in my opinion, is neither right or wrong. It is, exactly so, his opinion! I admit it has the potential to catch pathogens earlier. In fact, I believe I already said that.
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Old 08-08-2014, 06:43 AM
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Default Re: The definition of Frog Free

What do you base your personal opinion of once a year on? Because Ed said twice up there do you have some non anecdotal scientific peer reviewed citation for that?

Non-anecdotal, scientific, Peer-reviewed?! If that's the criteria then this thread never existed and Ed didn't have to type all that for us!

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