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Noninvasive sampling method for urinalysis and urine protein profile in captive giraffes

Urinalysis could be helpful to investigate the health status of giraffes held in captivity using noninvasive methods to avoid animal handling or anesthesia. We collected 52 voided urine samples from 20 giraffes of different ages, sexes, and subspecies from the ground. To evaluate potential interference by soil contaminants, a pilot study was performed using 20 urine samples obtained from 10 cows. All bovine and 29 giraffe samples were subjected to routine urinalysis including urine specific gravity (USG). All samples were

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Species-Spanning Echocardiography – Cardiovascular Insights from Across the Animal Kingdom

Purpose of Review: The objective of this review is to present comparative echocardiography as a source of insights for human cardiovascular medicine. Recent Findings: We present echocardiographic examples of high impact human cardiovascular pathologies, including valvular, vascular, conduction, and myocardial disorders, in a wide range of species in varying environments. Unique features associated with comparative echocardiographic assessments are linked to human cardiology, including natural animal models of resistance and vulnerability. Summary: The cardiovascular vulnerabilities and strengths of other species can

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Observations and perceptions of veterinarians and farmers on heartwater distribution, occurrence and associated factors in South Africa

Background: There is currently no scientific evidence regarding the current climatic or other epidemiological factors that could influence the occurrence of heartwater in South Africa. Objectives: The objective was to determine whether climatic changes or other epidemiological factors influence the occurrence of heartwater in South Africa. Method: A survey was conducted to scrutinise these factors using both veterinarians and farmers working in known areas in which heartwater had previously been confirmed to establish the value of each of these factors.

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Landscape-level changes to large mammal space use in response to a pastoralist incursion.

Pastoralists and their livestock have long competed with wildlife over access to grazing on shared rangelands. In the dynamic 21st century however, the configuration and quality of these rangelands is changing rapidly. Climate change processes, human range expansion, and the fragmentation and degradation of rangeland habitat have increased competition between pastoralist livestock and wildlife. Interactions of this type are particularly apparent in East Africa, and perhaps most obvious in northern Kenya. In 2017, following months of intense drought, a pastoralist

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Modelling and predicting mammalian wildlife abundance and distribution in semi-arid Gonarezhou National Park, south eastern Zimbabwe

Purpose – The purpose of this study is to model and predict mammalian herbivore species abundance in Gonarezhou National Park (GNP), south eastern Zimbabwe. The study also aims to determine and evaluate the distribution-abundance patterns in GNP. Design/methodology/approach – Using aerial survey data from 1980 to 2016, the authors use the rank abundance model to determine the abundance of mammalian herbivores in GNP. Regression analysis is used to show the mammalian herbivore species distribution-abundance relationship. Findings – The findings point

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Giraffe: Biology, Behaviour and Conservation – Book Review

According to the preface in this volume, Anne Dagg has been captivated by Giraffa camelopardalis since she was a toddler. This is apparent in her subsequent publications. In 1976, she co-authored, with Bristol Foster, ‘The Giraffe: Its Biology, Behaviour and Ecology’, and in 1982, she updated this book. This was one of two giraffe books I bought many years ago when I was first captivated by the reticulated race of this species. The other was The Book of the Giraffe

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A novel Giraffidae-specific interspersed repeat with a microsatellite, originally found in an intron of a ruminant paralogous p97bcnt gene

The ruminant-specific p97bcnt gene (bcntp97) is a paralogous gene that includes a region derived from a retrotransposable element 1 (RTE-1). The region comprises an exon (RTE-1 exon) encoding 325 amino acids in the middle of the p97bcnt protein. To understand how the bcntp97 paralog evolved, we examined its organization in several ruminants. We found a 700-base pair (bp) insert in the 5Vintron of the RTE- 1 exon in giraffe bcntp97. This insert is missing in the corresponding regions of bovine

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Factors influencing host selection by yellow-billed oxpeckers at Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe

Oxpecker host selection appears to be governed by an array of factors affecting the efficiency of foraging for ticks, with optimally foraging oxpeckers choosing those hosts that maximize tick intake and/or minimize search time. We studied yellow-billed oxpeckers Buphagus africanus (Linnaeus) at Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe, in order to examine the relationship between host selection and seasonal tick abundance, host characteristics and water availability. Preference ranks were highly correlated between the dry and wet seasons, implying that relative tick burdens of

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Molecular and Serological Footprints of Mycobacterium avium Subspecies Infections in Zoo Animals

Background: Mycobacteria of the Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) pose a significant risk to zoological collections. Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (MAP) is a member of MAC and the causative agent of Johne’s disease. Despite many reports in animals kept in zoological gardens, systemic surveillance has rarely been reported. Methods: In this study, archived serum samples collected from animal species at the Wilhelma Zoological and Botanical Gardens in Stuttgart, Germany, were screened for the presence of antibodies against MAC and MAP. In

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Palaeoecological and palaeoenviromental reconstruction of the upper Miocene vertebrate karstic site of Corral de Lobato, central-eastern Spain

We report stable isotopic analyses for dental enamel of fossil mammals from the Miocene (~7.1 Ma, MN13, middle Turolian) Corral de Lobato locality, Guadalajara, Spain, and compare it with adjacent localities of the Iberian Range. This multidisciplinary research allows the assessment of the palaeoenvironmental, palaeoecological and palaeoclimatic conditions that were in place in the central-eastern area of the Iberian Peninsula at this time. Herbivore tooth enamel δ13C values point to the presence of two environments: open woodland/arid C3 grassland and

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