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Mortality of captive giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) associated with serious fat atrophy: A review of five of cases at Auckland Zoo

Five giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) died peracutely within an 8-yr period. The giraffe were maintained in an outside enclosure during the day and moved under shelter at night. All the deaths occurred in winter. All the dead giraffe had serous fat atrophy at postmortem. The giraffe were fed good quantities of browse, together with alfalfa hay and commercial supplements. Retrospective analysis of the dietary ingredients showed that the diets were energy deficient. Subsequent additional high-energy feeds have caused a marked increase

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Comparison of in vitro tests for evaluation of Passive Transfer of Immunoglobulins in giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis)

Serum samples from captive giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) were tested to assess passive transfer of immunoglobulins using in vitro methods developed for domestic ruminants. Estimated immunoglobulin levels were compared using five tests (protein electrophoresis, total protein refractometry, zinc sulfate turbidity, glutaraldehyde coagulation, and sodium sulfite turbidity). A linear relationship was observed among total protein, gamma globulin (electrophoretic measurement), and immunoglobulin level based on spectrophotometric measurement of zinc sulfate turbidity. Nonquantitative assays also demonstrated statistical correlation with the quantitative methods. Using criteria

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Identification of a novel species of papillomavirus in giraffe lesions using nanopore sequencing

Papillomaviridae form a large family of viruses that are known to infect a variety of vertebrates, including mammals, reptiles, birds and fish. Infections usually give rise to minor skin lesions but can in some cases lead to the development of malignant neoplasia. In this study, we identified a novel species of papillomavirus (PV), isolated from warts of four giraffes (Giraffa camelopardalis). The sequence of the L1 gene was determined and found to be identical for all isolates. Using nanopore sequencing,

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Regional variation of the manifestation, prevalence, and severity of giraffe skin disease: A review of an emerging disease in wild and captive giraffe populations

Large mammals have drastically declined in the past few decades yet we know little about their ecology. Giraffe numbers for instance, have dropped by more than 40% in the last 15 years and recently, a skin disease, has been observed in numerous giraffe populations across Africa. The disease(s), commonly referred to as giraffe skin disease (GSD), manifests as lesions, wrinkled skin, and encrustations that can affect the limbs, shoulder or neck of giraffes. Here, we review GSD cases from literature

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Mapping the spatial configuration and severity of giraffe skin disease in Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

Giraffe numbers, have dropped by about 40% in the last 20 years, making giraffes a species of conservation concern. In the same period of time, a skin disease has been observed in numerous giraffe populations across Africa. The disease, commonly referred to as giraffe skin disease (GSD), manifests as lesions, wrinkled skin, and encrustations that can affect the limbs, shoulder or neck of giraffes. Giraffe skin disease may hinder movement causing increased susceptibility to predation. In chapter 1, I reviewed

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White giraffes: The first record of vitiligo in a wild adult giraffe

Variation in the colour and patterning of animal coats has evolved to offer individuals adaptive advantage and is determined by both genetics and environmental factors. The biological functions of animal coat patterns include protection of the skin from exposure to sunlight, protection from predators by camouflage, individual recognition and sexual recognition within a species. Optimal coat patterns are especially important in the wild where immediate survival relies on an individual’s ability to avoid predators. Changes in coat colour within an

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Soil correlates and mortality from Giraffe Skin Disease in Tanzania

Giraffe skin disease (GSD) is a disorder of undetermined etiology that causes lesions on the forelimbs of Masai giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchi) in Tanzania, East Africa. We examined soil correlates of prevalence of GSD from 951 giraffe in 14 sites in Tanzania, and estimated mortality using 3 yr of longitudinal mark–recapture data from 382 giraffe with and without GSD lesions, in Tarangire National Park (TNP). Spatial variation in GSD prevalence was best explained by soil fertility, measured as cation exchange

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