Conjunctival swabs were taken from both eyes of 70 healthy domestic rabbits and cultured to determine the microbial population. Bacteria were recovered from 83 per cent of the specimens. DNase-negative Staphylococcus species (57 per cent) were the most commonly recovered organisms followed by Micrococcus species (25 per cent) and Bacillus species (19 per cent). Other organisms isolated included Stomatococcus species (8 per cent), Neisseria species (8 per cent), Pasteurella species (6 per cent), Corynebacterium species (6 per cent), Streptococcus species (6 per cent) and Moraxella species (4 per cent), and other bacteria were isolated less frequently. Statistical analysis showed that there appeared to be no significant difference between the bacterial isolation rates from different breeds of rabbit. Significantly more of the swabs taken from young rabbits yielded cultivable bacteria than did those taken from rabbits over 12 months of age.
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