Results of a Preliminary Survey into Wasting Marmoset Syndrome in Callitrichid Collections

A preliminary survey of Wasting Marmoset Syndrome was conducted in order to ascertain the significance of this disease constellation in callitrichid collections during the period from 1989 through 1993. Questionnaires prepared by the Philadelphia Zoo Animal and Animal Health Departments and approved by the AZA New World Primate Taxon Advisory Group were mailed to 275 animal managers and veterinarians at...

Vitamin D and Primates: Recurring Problems on a Familiar Theme

Captive primates housed indoors with little access to ultraviolet light have historically been susceptible to metabolic bone disease. The trend in zoological parks toward building large, indoor exhibits has potentially exacerbated this problem. Most skylight materials are not transparent to the wavelengths of ultraviolet light (UV-B) necessary for endogenous production of vitamin D. It is possible that most primates, like...

Total Fecal Collection and Acid-Insoluble Ash as Measures of Dry Matter Digestibility by Kowari (Dasyuriodes brynei)

Comparisons were made between the total fecal collection and acid-insoluble ash (AIA) natural marker methods for determining dry matter digestibility (DMD) coefficients of rations for Kowari (Dasyuriodes brynei) at the Metro Toronto Zoo (MTZ). Two rations were evaluated separately in trials of 5 to 7 days duration; a ground mice diet (2 trials) and a plain carnivore mix diet (4...

Evaluating a Submersible Diet for Ducks and Other Species

The use of an alginate-calcium complex to formulate a durable submersible diet was evaluated in a feeding trial with growing ducklings. Growth, feed intake (FI), gain:feed ratio (GF), dry matter digestibility, metabolizable energy (ME), nitrogen-corrected ME and excreta moisture did not differ between birds fed a commercial 22% crude protein duck starter diet and those fed the same diet incorporating...

Small Ruminants: Digestive Capacity Differences between Frugivores and Browsers?

Small ruminants are generally classified as either browsers or frugivores. We hypothesize that browsers may be able to digest insoluble fiber diets better than can frugivores. We compared intake and digestion in the following four species: two Cervidae: red brocket (Mazama americana), body weight 20 kg and pudu (Pudu pudu), 9 kg, and two Bovidae: bay duiker (Cephalophusdorsalis), 12 kg...

Skepticism and Science: Responsibilities of the Comparative Nutritionist

Comparative nutritionists are asked to formulate diets for over 3,000 species of animals, including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and invertebrates. Little research has been conducted to provide an information base for this task, and both popular and scientific publications contain factual errors and irrational concepts that confuse the user. When data are suspect and theories don’t make sense, they...

Serum Magnesium and Zinc Status of Wild Ungulates in the Swaziland Lowveld

Serum magnesium (Mg) and zinc (Zn) were measured in 179 impala (Aepyceros melampus), 13 warthog (Phacochoerus aethiopicus), 6 kudu (Tragelaphu strepsiceros), 4 grey duiker (Sylvicapra grimmia) and 3 blue wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus) from the Mlawula-Mbuluzi-Simunye Nature Reserve and Protected Area complex in the northeastern Swaziland lowveld from October 1985 to September 1986. Serum Mg was higher in the small concentrate...

Nutrition as a Major Facet of Reptile Conservation

The importance of nutrition has not received much recognition in conservation biology. However, captive breeding is only possible if nutritional requirements are met, and effective habitat management requires an evaluation of nutritional resources. Three examples involving reptile conservation are presented. The formulation and testing of experimental meal-type diets proved essential for the large scale rearing of green iguanas (Iguana iguana)...