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Whipsnade, United Kingdom

Saragusty J.,Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research | Hildebrandt T.B.,Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research | Bouts T.,Zoological Society London | Goritz F.,Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research | Hermes R.,Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research
Theriogenology | Year: 2010

Knowledge about the reproduction of the endangered pygmy hippopotamus is almost non-existent. This study takes the first step toward changing this by devising a protocol for the collection, evaluation, and short-term preservation of semen of this endangered species. Semen was collected successfully from seven bulls by electroejaculation, using a specially designed rectal probe. Mean ± SEM values of native sperm parameters from combined best fractions were: motility-80.0 ± 4.1%, concentration-2421 ± 1530 × 106 cells/mL, total collected cell number-759 ± 261 × 106 cells, intact acrosome-87.8 ± 1.2%, intact morphology-52.7 ± 4.3%, and, for some, hypoosmotic swelling test-79.3 ± 4.4% and seminal plasma osmolarity-297.5 ± 3.3 mOsm. Seven different extenders were tested for sperm storage under chilling conditions: Berliner Cryomedium (BC), Biladyl®, modification of Kenney modified Tyrode's medium (KMT), MES medium, Androhep®, boar M III™ extender and Human Sperm Refrigeration Medium. While differences between males were apparent, the BC was consistently superior to all other extenders in sperm motility and facilitated storage for 7 d with up to 30% motility and some motility even after 3 weeks. With this knowledge in hand, the obvious two directions for future research are to conduct artificial insemination and to develop a technique for sperm cryopreservation. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.

News Article
Site: news.yahoo.com

The Zoological Society London (ZSL), whose mission is to promote and achieve the world-wide conservation of animals and their habitats, says it may have taken a step closer to fulfilling that with the development of a new camera, which it calls Instant Detect. Developed in partnership with other companies like Seven Technologies Group, which specializes in security technology and helped train rangers on conservation sites on how best to use Instant Detect devices, ZSL hopes it could help the fight against poaching, as well as the monitoring of endangered and other species. In the last 40 years 95 percent of rhinoceroses have been poached and more than 100,000 African elephants from 2011-2014 have been illegally killed, according to the charity group. Instant Detect is a camera trap system that uses satellite technology to send images from anywhere in the world, according to ZSL Conservation Technology Unit Project Manager, Louise Hartley. "It's a camera that we would deploy in the wild, it has to be quite sturdy and it often uses motion triggers, so it will have a passive infrared sensor to detect heat changes, so as an animal or a person walks past an image will be captured, and it's just a great way to get an insight into the wild that you wouldn't be able to do if you were a person," she said. The satellite node uses a Raspberry Pi computer to send the images via the Iridium satellite network, which is a satellite constellation providing voice and data coverage to satellite phones, pagers and other integrated transceivers. A filter moves across the lens detecting the change from day to night and adjusting the camera accordingly, so it can see in the dark using night vision. According to Hartley, it has two main uses - monitoring and catching poachers. "We have a deployment in Antarctica to monitor penguins, so we're getting images back daily to look at the penguin behavior and also look at environmental change in that area," she said. "We're also using it for anti-poaching purposes to improve security within protected areas. So an alert, an image, would be sent to an operations room and then rangers can then react accordingly to that alert," she added. If an intruder enters a protected area the camera picks that up and sends an alert. It also has magnetic sensors that can pick up cars, guns and even knives, also triggering the alert to local rangers. The Instant Detect box has a camera lens in the middle, surrounded by an LED array used for night-time imagery using infrared flash - "so when it goes off you won't be able to see it, it's not visible to the human eye," said Hartley. "We have here the passive infrared sensor, so that's the motion detector, so it detects heat change, so as a person or a species is walking in it will trigger an image to be taken," she added, "you can also set it to timelapse so you can set an image to be taken every four hours or every five hours for example." The crucial part, though, is how it talks to ZSL's monitors and to local rangers. "You have the antenna attached to the top here, and then you would have a battery pack attached to the bottom here. When an image is taken there's a separate unit called the satellite node, and the images are sent via radio frequency to the satellite node and then the satellite node uses the Iridium Satellite Network to send that image to where you need it," Hartley said. Other anti-poaching technologies have come to the fore recently, including the Real-Time Anti-Poaching Intelligence Device (RAPID) developed by conservation organization Protect with support from the Humane Society International. DNA analysis, acoustic traps, thermal imaging and improving analytics and mapping are all contributing to the fight against poaching as well. ZSL hopes that Instant Detect could be a crucial addition to that growing arsenal, in what remains a battle with high costs. The Kruger Park, South Africa's main tourist draw, is one place on the front-line of the battle against a surge in rhino poaching for the animal's horn to meet demand in countries such as Vietnam, where it is a coveted ingredient in traditional medicine. The poaching of rhinos there rose in 2015, although it was on the decline elsewhere in the country.

Chai N.,French Natural History Museum | Bronchain O.,University Paris - Sud | Panteix G.,Laboratoire Biomnis | Godreuil S.,Montpellier University | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2012

Mycobacterium liflandii has been responsible for an emerging infection reported in the international trade of Western clawed frogs (Silurana tropicalis). This study shows that this mycolactone-producing Mycobacterium (MPM) has expanded its distribution range to France. The results of this study suggest that the use of in vitro fertilization to maintain genetic lines could be a temporary solution for valuable S. tropicalis propagation. Copyright © 2012 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.

Bouts T.,Zoological Society London | Karunaratna D.,UK Institute of Zoology | Berry K.,Zoological Society London | Dodds J.,Zoological Society London | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2011

Twenty-six adult semifree-ranging Bennett's wallabies were anesthetized. Animals in group MA received medetomidine 0.1 mg/kg and alfaxalone 4 mg/kg i.m. in a 5-ml dart, whereas those in group MK received medetomidine 0.1 mg/kg and ketamine 5 mg/kg i.m. in a 3-ml dart. Dosages were based on estimated body weights. The wallabies were allowed to recover spontaneously or, if still nonresponsive at the end of the procedure, were given atipamezole 0.5 mg/kg (half the dose via i.m. and the other half via i.v.). Heart rate and respiratory rate were monitored at 5-min intervals, temperature at 10-min intervals, and two arterial blood samples were taken for blood gas analysis. Statistical analysis was performed by using analysis of variance (P < 0.05). The use of 5-ml darts in group MA compared with 3-ml darts in group MK could potentially increase the risk of iatrogenic trauma and should be considered. Induction and maintenance of anesthesia were satisfactory in both groups. There were no significant differences between the groups in mean time to first effect, recumbency, and approach, or to time to sternal recumbency and standing after reversal with atipamezole. Although bradycardia was present in both groups, no statistical differences were calculated for respiratory rate and heart rate, whereas the mean cloacal temperature was significantly lower in group MA (P = 0.01). Mixed acid-base disturbances occurred in both groups. All but one animal in group MK needed atipamezole at the end of the procedure. No adverse effects were observed after recovery. Copyright 2011 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.

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