- Feeding Asian pangolins: An assessment of current diets fed in institutions worldwide. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2017 Jan 18
- Pangolins are ant specialists which are under intense threat from the illegal wildlife trade. Nutrition has notoriously been their downfall in captivity and is still an issue in regards to rescue and...
Pangolins are ant specialists which are under intense threat from the illegal wildlife trade. Nutrition has notoriously been their downfall in captivity and is still an issue in regards to rescue and rehabilitation. We analyzed the nutrient content of diets used by institutions that are successfully keeping Asian pangolins and to assess the variety of the ingredients and nutrients, compared these with the nutritional requirements of potential nutritional model species. We performed intake studies at five institutions and also had data from three other institutions. We also analyzed five different wild food items to use as a proxy of wild diet. We observed two categories of captive diets: those mostly or completely composed of insects and those high in commercial feeds or animal meat. Nutrient values were broad and there was no clear rule. The non-protein energy to protein energy ratio of the diets were much higher than the wild food items, more so for those which receive less insects. The average contribution of carbohydrate, fat, and protein energy were also further away from the wild samples the less insects they contained. The previously suggested nutritional model for pangolins is the domestic dog which is supported by our relatively large nutrient ranges of apparently successful diets, however, due to their highly carnivorous nature; the upper most nutrient intake data are not consistent with this and favor the feline nutrient recommendations. We are unable to render a conclusion of what model is more appropriate based on our data collected.
- Supplemental feeding of captive neonatal koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus). [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016 Dec 27
- Koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) are cautious animals, making supplemental feeding of neonates challenging because of disturbances to the normal routine. However, supplemental feeding is beneficial in...
Koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) are cautious animals, making supplemental feeding of neonates challenging because of disturbances to the normal routine. However, supplemental feeding is beneficial in improving juvenile nutrition using less formula than required for hand-rearing, and allowing maternal bonding to continue through suckling. In this study, two neonatal koalas, delivered by the same mother in 2 years, exhibited insufficient growth post-emergence from the pouch; supplemental feeding was therefore initiated. The amount of formula fed was determined according to the product instructions, and offspring weight was monitored. Slower than normal growth was not initially noticed in the first offspring. This caused delayed commencement of supplemental feeding. An attempt was made to counteract this by providing more formula for a longer period; however, this meant No. 1 was unable to eat enough eucalyptus when weaning. Supplemental feeding was started earlier for the second offspring than for the first, and was terminated at weaning; this juvenile showed a healthy body weight increase. Furthermore, it was able to eat eucalyptus leaves at an earlier stage than No. 1. Although No. 1 showed delayed growth, both koalas matured and are still living. This study showed that supplemental feeding is useful for koalas, if the mother will accept human intervention. The key factors for successful supplemental feeding of koalas identified by comparing the two feeding systems observed in this study are that: (1) it should be initiated as soon as insufficient growth is identified; and (2) it should be terminated before weaning age. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Intrinsic factors, adrenal gland morphology, and disease burden in captive cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) in South Africa. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016 Dec 27
- Adrenal gland weight (AW) and corticomedullary ratio (ACMR) are used as indicators of stress in animals. Captive cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) have higher ACMRs than free-ranging ones and stress has be...
Adrenal gland weight (AW) and corticomedullary ratio (ACMR) are used as indicators of stress in animals. Captive cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) have higher ACMRs than free-ranging ones and stress has been linked to gastritis, amyloidosis, glomerulosclerosis, and myocardial fibrosis. We reviewed age, sex, body weight (BW), kidney weight (KW), and left AW and ACMR with necropsy findings in 51 South African captive cheetahs. Eleven common histopathologic lesions were counted for each animal as measure of its disease burden. Adrenal corticomedullary hyperplasia was significantly correlated with left AW and ACMR. Males had significantly higher AWs than females; other parameters showed no difference between the sexes. Disease burden, gastritis, and myocardial fibrosis were moderately correlated with adrenal morphology supporting prior evidence that gastritis and myocardial fibrosis are linked to stress. Glomerulosclerosis was not correlated with adrenal morphology and neither kidney nor liver amyloidosis contributed significantly to variation in AW or ACMR on multivariate analyses. Interstitial nephritis showed much stronger correlations with kidney and liver amyloidosis than gastritis. All three adrenal parameters were correlated with age; age was the only significant variable affecting ACMR on the multivariate analyses; and disease burden as well as systemic amyloidosis and kidney disease (except for fibrosis) showed moderate correlations with age. Age may, therefore, be important in the pathogenesis of disease in captive cheetahs, particularly of amyloidosis and kidney disease. None of the intrinsic measurements or adrenal parameters were sufficiently closely linked to disease to be used as ante-mortem proxies for disease burden or specific diseases. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Assessment of behavior and space use before and after forelimb amputation in a zoo-housed chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes). [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016 Dec 15
- Primates possess great manual dexterity, and their limbs are integral to many aspects of normal functioning (e.g., climbing, feeding). As such, the loss of a limb carries the risk of significant disa...
Primates possess great manual dexterity, and their limbs are integral to many aspects of normal functioning (e.g., climbing, feeding). As such, the loss of a limb carries the risk of significant disability and potentially harmful impairment of species-typical functioning. Limb loss is known to occur in some wild primate populations due to entanglement in hunting snares, but can also occur in captive settings due to injury that necessitates therapeutic amputation. In this study, we conducted a detailed evaluation of the behavior, travel, and space use expressed by a female zoo-housed chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) before and following surgical amputation of her right forelimb. Overall, our results suggest that the injury did not substantively affect her daily activities. She showed no change to her vertical space use, spending equivalent proportions of her time on the ground and high in the enclosure. There was a decrease in the frequency of locomotion on the ground (P = 0.006) but also a significant increase in the overall distance travelled (P = 0.0015) following the removal of the limb. This case study provides evidence that individual chimpanzees are able to successfully adjust to significant anatomical changes when provided adequate environments in which to stay active, and highlights the importance of an effective post-surgical monitoring period-a comprehensive recovery evaluation that includes input from both veterinary and behavioral research staff is likely to provide the most holistic assessment of animal health and long-term wellbeing. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Contrasting results from molecular and pedigree-based population diversity measures in captive zebra highlight challenges facing genetic management of zoo populations. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016 Dec 15
- Zoo conservation breeding programs manage the retention of population genetic diversity through analysis of pedigree records. The range of demographic and genetic indices determined through pedigree ...
Zoo conservation breeding programs manage the retention of population genetic diversity through analysis of pedigree records. The range of demographic and genetic indices determined through pedigree analysis programs allows the conservation of diversity to be monitored relative to the particular founder population for a species. Such approaches are based on a number of well-documented founder assumptions, however without knowledge of actual molecular genetic diversity there is a risk that pedigree-based measures will be misinterpreted and population genetic diversity misunderstood. We examined the genetic diversity of the captive populations of Grevy's zebra, Hartmann's mountain zebra and plains zebra in Japan and the United Kingdom through analysis of mitochondrial DNA sequences. Very low nucleotide variability was observed in Grevy's zebra. The results were evaluated with respect to current and historic diversity in the wild, and indicate that low genetic diversity in the captive population is likely a result of low founder diversity, which in turn suggests relatively low wild genetic diversity prior to recent population declines. Comparison of molecular genetic diversity measures with analogous diversity indices generated from the studbook data for Grevy's zebra and Hartmann's mountain zebra show contrasting patterns, with Grevy's zebra displaying markedly less molecular diversity than mountain zebra, despite studbook analysis indicating that the Grevy's zebra population has substantially more founders, greater effective population size, lower mean kinship, and has suffered less loss of gene diversity. These findings emphasize the need to validate theoretical estimates of genetic diversity in captive breeding programs with empirical molecular genetic data. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Instructions for Contributors. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016; 35(6):580-581
- Announcements. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016; 35(6):579
- Modulation of whistle production related to training sessions in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) under human care. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016; 35(6):495-504
- Bottlenose dolphins are highly social cetaceans with an extensive sound production including clicks, burst-pulsed sounds, and whistles. Some whistles, known as signature whistles, are individually sp...
Bottlenose dolphins are highly social cetaceans with an extensive sound production including clicks, burst-pulsed sounds, and whistles. Some whistles, known as signature whistles, are individually specific. These acoustic signatures are commonly described as being emitted in contexts of stress during forced isolation and as group cohesion calls. Interactions between humans and captive dolphins is largely based on positive reinforcement conditioning within several training/feeding sessions per day. Vocal behavior of dolphins during these interactions might vary. To investigate this, we recorded 10 bottlenose dolphins of Parc Asterix dolphinarium (France) before, during and after 10 training sessions for a total duration of 7 hr and 32 min. We detected 3,272 whistles with 2,884 presenting a quality good enough to be categorized. We created a catalog of whistle types by visual categorization verified by five naive judges (Fleiss' Kappa Test). We then applied the SIGID method to identify the signatures whistles present in our recordings. We found 279 whistles belonging to one of the four identified signature whistle types. The remaining 2,605 were classified as non-signature whistles. The non-signature whistles emission rate was higher during and after the training sessions than before. Emission rate of three signature whistles types significantly increased afterwards as compared to before the training sessions. We suggest that dolphins use their signature whistles when they return to their intraspecific social interactions succeeding scheduled and human-organized training sessions. More observations are needed to make conclusions about the function of signature whistles in relation to training sessions. Zoo Biol. 35:495-504, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Development of sociality and emergence of independence in a killer whale (Orcinus orca) calf from birth to 36 months. [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016 Nov 21
- Dolphin calves spend most of their time swimming with their mother immediately after birth. As they mature, the calves become increasingly independent, and begin to interact more often with other cal...
Dolphin calves spend most of their time swimming with their mother immediately after birth. As they mature, the calves become increasingly independent, and begin to interact more often with other calves, juveniles, and sub-adults. For bottlenose dolphin calves, sociality is related to maternal behaviors. Unfortunately, much less is known about the development of sociality and emergence of independence for killer whale calves. The purpose of this study was to examine the developmental changes in social behaviors and solitary activities of a killer whale calf across a 36-month period. Focal follow video recordings of a mother-calf pair housed at SeaWorld San Antonio were collected 2-6 times a day for 5-15 min at 6-month intervals. Using a sample of randomly selected video recordings at each month, developmental changes in swims and social interactions with her mother, swims and social interactions with non-maternal partners, and solitary activities (e.g., solitary swims, solitary play) were observed across the months. The calf spent most of her time swimming with the mother across the 36-month period. The time the calf socialized with her mother was greater than the time she socialized with others at each month. Besides her mother, the calf socialized more often with the other adult female compared to adult males. As the calf matured, the increase in the time she spent socializing with adult killer whales other than the mother corresponded with an increase in the rate and time spent in solitary play. The developmental trends of sociality and emerging independence replicate research conducted with calves of other dolphin species. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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- Fourteen tail feathers: An autosomal recessive trait in california condors (Gymnogyps californianus). [Journal Article]
- ZBZoo Biol 2016 Nov 15
- Eight pairs of California Condors (Gymnogyps californianus) have produced 12 chicks with 14 tail feathers instead of the normal 12. The 14 tail feather trait appears to follow an autosomal recessive ...
Eight pairs of California Condors (Gymnogyps californianus) have produced 12 chicks with 14 tail feathers instead of the normal 12. The 14 tail feather trait appears to follow an autosomal recessive pattern of inheritance and is not known to be deleterious. The putative allele for the trait was present in at least seven of the 13 founders of the population. The 14 tail feather allele is the second recessive allele discovered in the condor population. Due to the founder effect, which changes the frequency of many formerly rare recessive alleles, and genetic management to minimize mean kinship, which reduces the expression of recessive traits, it is likely that this population carries other recessive alleles that have not yet been detected. Zoo Biol. XX:XX-XX, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.