Ex situ amphibian nutrition: recent findings and future directions


Koutsos EA, Valdes E. 2015. Ex situ amphibian nutrition: recent findings and future directions. In Bissell H, Brooks M Eds. Proceedings of the Eleventh Conference on Zoo and Wildlife Nutrition, AZA Nutrition Advisory Group, Portland, OR.


In 2013 a workshop was hosted to evaluate the current understanding of amphibian medicine and nutrition, in order to further our progress in establishment of successful breeding programs to promote amphibian conservation (Olea-Popelka et al., 2014). The Nutrition Working Group identified a number of challenges and opportunities for advancement in this field (Ferrie et al., 2014). First, an overarching theme of all Working Groups was the need for standardization of protocols and processes to allow for objective evaluation of nutritional and health status of amphibians. Second, an overview of current knowledge in amphibian nutrition was conducted. Finally, specific areas of concern in nutrition were highlighted for vitamin A status (determination of status, preventive and therapeutic options), multifactorial issues contributing to metabolic bone disease, the role of water quality in amphibian nutrition, establishment of appropriate research models to further define nutrient requirements of amphibians, and the need for evaluation of a wider range of wild-type diet items and enhancement of captive diet items.

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