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Sample records for asian elephant elephas

  1. Low coverage sequencing of two Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) genomes

    OpenAIRE

    Dastjerdi, Akbar; Robert, Christelle; Watson, Mick

    2014-01-01

    Background There are three species of elephant that exist, the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) and two species of African elephant (Loxodonta africana and Loxodonta cyclotis). The populations of all three species are dwindling, and are under threat due to factors, such as habitat destruction and ivory hunting. The species differ in many respects, including in their morphology and response to disease. The availability of elephant genome sequence data from all three elephant species will compl...

  2. Identification of bifidobacteria isolated from Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Vera Bunesova; Eva Vlkova; Vojtech Rada; Jiri Killer; Vladimir Kmet

    2013-06-01

    Bifidobacteria are considered as one of the key genera in intestinal tracts of animals, and their species composition vary depending on the host. The aim of this study was to identify faecal bifidobacteria from Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), housed in Zoological gardens (Ostrava, Czech Republic). Using culturing, bifidobacteria were found in counts 7.60±0.56 log CFU/g. Twenty-six pure strains were isolated from faeces of Asian elephant. The isolates were clustered into two groups according to fingerprinting profiles and fermentation characteristic. Bacteria were identified by a combination of MALDI-TOF MS, PCR methods and sequencing as B. boum (12 isolates) and B. adolescentis (14 isolates). Elephant strains showed different fingerprinting profiles than type and collection strains. Since these two species are frequently isolated from gastrointestinal tract of herbivores, they seem to be typical of animals fed plant diets.

  3. Detection of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus infection among healthy Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in South India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanton, Jeffrey J; Nofs, Sally A; Zachariah, Arun; Kalaivannan, N; Ling, Paul D

    2014-04-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHVs) can cause fatal hemorrhagic disease in Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants. Of the seven known EEHV species, EEHV1 is recognized as the most common cause of hemorrhagic disease among Asian elephants in human care worldwide. Recent data collected from ex situ Asian elephants located in multiple North American and European institutions suggest that subclinical EEHV1 infection is common in this population of elephants. Although fatal EEHV1-associated hemorrhagic disease has been reported in range countries, data are lacking regarding the prevalence of subclinical EEHV infections among in situ Asian elephants. We used previously validated EEHV-specific quantitative real-time PCR assays to detect subclinical EEHV infection in three regionally distinct Asian elephant cohorts, totaling 46 in situ elephants in South India, during October and November 2011. Using DNA prepared from trunk washes, we detected EEHV1, EEHV3/4, and EEHV5 at frequencies of 7, 9, and 20% respectively. None of the trunk washes was positive for EEHV2 or 6. At least one EEHV species was detectable in 35% (16/46) of the samples that were screened. These data suggest that subclinical EEHV infection among in situ Asian elephants occurs and that Asian elephants may be natural hosts for EEHV1, EEHV3 or 4, and EEHV5, but not EEHV2 and EEHV6. The methodology described in this study provides a foundation for further studies to determine prevalences of EEHV infection in Asian elephants throughout the world.

  4. Acute phase protein expression during elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus-1 viremia in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanton, Jeffrey J; Cray, Carolyn; Rodriguez, Marilyn; Arheart, Kristopher L; Ling, Paul D; Herron, Alan

    2013-09-01

    Infection of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) with elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV) can be associated with rapid, lethal hemorrhagic disease and has been documented in elephant herds in human care and in the wild. Recent reports describe real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) assays used to monitor clinically ill elephants and also to detect subclinical EEHV1 infection in apparently healthy Asian elephants. Acute phase proteins have been demonstrated to increase with a variety of infectious etiologies in domesticated mammals but have not yet been described in elephants. In addition, the immune response of Asian elephants to EEHV1 infection has not been described. In this study, whole blood and trunk wash samples representing repeated measures from eight elephants were examined for the presence of EEHV1 using a qPCR assay. Elephants were classified into groups, as follows: whole blood negative and positive and trunk wash negative and positive. Serum amyloid A (SAA) and haptoglobin (HP) levels were compared between these groups. A significant difference in SAA was observed with nearly a threefold higher mean value during periods of viremia (P=0.011). Higher values of SAA were associated with >10,000 virus genome copies/ml EEHV1 in whole blood. There were no significant differences in HP levels, although some individual animals did exhibit increased levels with infection. These data indicate that an inflammatory process is stimulated during EEHV1 viremia. Acute phase protein quantitation may aid in monitoring the health status of Asian elephants.

  5. Plasma and erythrocyte fatty acids in captive Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clauss, M; Wang, Y; Ghebremeskel, K; Lendl, C E; Streich, W J

    2003-07-12

    The fatty acid components of the plasma triglycerides and the phospholipid fractions of the red blood cells of a captive group of two African (Loxodonta africana) and four Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants were investigated. All the animals received the same diet of hay, fruits and vegetables, and concentrates. A comparison with data from free-ranging African elephants or Asian work-camp elephants showed that the captive elephants had lower proportions of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), and for several lipid fractions a higher n-6:n-3 ratio, than their counterparts in the wild or under the more natural, in terms of diet, work-camp conditions. The difference in PUFA content was smaller in the African than in the Asian elephants. The captive Asian elephants tended to have lower levels of n-3 and total unsaturated fatty acids in their red blood cells than the captive African elephants.

  6. Osteocalcin and bone-specific alkaline phosphatase in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) at different ages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arya, Nlin; Moonarmart, Walasinee; Cheewamongkolnimit, Nareerat; Keratikul, Nutcha; Poon-Iam, Sawinee; Routh, Andrew; Bumpenpol, Pitikarn; Angkawanish, Taweepoke

    2015-11-01

    Bone turnover markers could offer a potential alternative means for the early diagnosis of metabolic bone disease in young growing elephants although the baseline of bone turnover markers in elephant is not well established. The aim of this study was to determine any relationship between the age of captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and markers of bone formation. Serum samples from 24 female Asian elephants were collected to evaluate levels of two bone formation markers, namely, osteocalcin (OC) and bone-specific alkaline phosphatase (BAP). Both intact and N-terminal midfragment OC and BAP were negatively correlated with age. The findings demonstrate that younger elephants have a higher rate of bone turnover than older elephants. Use of these and additional bone markers could lead to the establishment of validated protocols for the monitoring of bone disease in elephants.

  7. Birth statistics for African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants in human care: history and implications for elephant welfare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Robert H I

    2010-01-01

    African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) have lived in the care of humans for many years, yet there is no consensus concerning some basic parameters describing their newborn calves. This study provides a broad empirical basis for generalizations about the birth heights, birth weights, birth times and gestation periods of elephant calves born in captivity. I obtained data concerning at least one of these four characteristics for 218 newborn calves from 74 institutions. Over the past 30 years, newborn Asian elephants have been taller and heavier than newborn African elephants. Neonatal African elephants exhibited sex differences in both weight and height, whereas neonatal Asian elephants have exhibited sex differences only in height. Primiparous dams ex situ are at least as old as their in situ counterparts, whereas ex situ sires appear to be younger than sires in range countries. Confirming earlier anecdotal evidence, both African [N=47] and Asian [N=91] dams gave birth most often at night.

  8. Tuberculosis in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in Peninsular Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ong, B L; Ngeow, Y F; Razak, M F A Abdul; Yakubu, Y; Zakaria, Z; Mutalib, A R; Hassan, L; Ng, H F; Verasahib, K

    2013-07-01

    A cross-sectional study was conducted from 10 January to 9 April 2012, to determine the seroprevalence of tuberculosis (TB) of all captive Asian elephants and their handlers in six locations in Peninsular Malaysia. In addition, trunk-wash samples were examined for tubercle bacillus by culture and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). For 63 elephants and 149 elephant handlers, TB seroprevalence was estimated at 20.4% and 24.8%, respectively. From 151 trunkwash samples, 24 acid-fast isolates were obtained, 23 of which were identified by hsp65-based sequencing as non-tuberculous mycobacteria. The Mycobacterium tuberculosis-specific PCR was positive in the trunk-wash samples from three elephants which were also seropositive. Conversely, the trunk wash from seven seropositive elephants were PCR negative. Hence, there was evidence of active and latent TB in the elephants and the high seroprevalence in the elephants and their handlers suggests frequent, close contact, two-way transmission between animals and humans within confined workplaces.

  9. EFFECT OF ε-AMINOCAPROIC ACID ON FIBRINOLYSIS IN PLASMA OF ASIAN ELEPHANTS (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaye, Sarrah; Abou-Madi, Noha; Fletcher, Daniel J

    2016-06-01

    ε-Aminocaproic acid (EACA) is a lysine analogue antifibrinolytic drug used to treat bleeding disorders in humans and domestic animals. Use in zoological medicine is rare and dose recommendations are anecdotal, but EACA may be a valuable therapeutic option for bleeding disorders in exotic species, including Asian elephants ( Elephas maximus ). This study used an in vitro model of hyperfibrinolysis and a thromboelastograph-based assay to estimate the therapeutic plasma concentration of EACA in Asian elephants (61.5 μg/ml, 95% CI = 34.6-88.5 μg/ml). Substantial but incomplete inhibition of lysis was seen at relatively low concentrations of EACA (40 μg/ml). Asian elephants appear sensitive to EACA-mediated inhibition of hyperfibrinolysis. Doses published for domestic animals, targeting higher plasma concentrations, may be inappropriate in this species.

  10. Population differentiation within and among Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) populations in southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidya, T N C; Fernando, P; Melnick, D J; Sukumar, R

    2005-01-01

    Southern India, one of the last strongholds of the endangered Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), harbours about one-fifth of the global population. We present here the first population genetic study of free-ranging Asian elephants, examining within- and among-population differentiation by analysing mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and nuclear microsatellite DNA differentiation across the Nilgiris-Eastern Ghats, Anamalai, and Periyar elephant reserves of southern India. Low mtDNA diversity and 'normal' microsatellite diversity were observed. Surprisingly, the Nilgiri population, which is the world's single largest Asian elephant population, had only one mtDNA haplotype and lower microsatellite diversity than the two other smaller populations examined. There was almost no mtDNA or microsatellite differentiation among localities within the Nilgiris, an area of about 15,000 km2. This suggests extensive gene flow in the past, which is compatible with the home ranges of several hundred square kilometres of elephants in southern India. Conversely, the Nilgiri population is genetically distinct at both mitochondrial and microsatellite markers from the two more southerly populations, Anamalai and Periyar, which in turn are not genetically differentiated from each other. The more southerly populations are separated from the Nilgiris by only a 40-km-wide stretch across a gap in the Western Ghats mountain range. These results variably indicate the importance of population bottlenecks, social organization, and biogeographic barriers in shaping the distribution of genetic variation among Asian elephant populations in southern India.

  11. Pharmacokinetics of orally administered ibuprofen in African and Asian elephants (Loxodonta africana and Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bechert, Ursula; Christensen, J Mark

    2007-06-01

    The pharmacokinetic parameters of S(+) and R(-) ibuprofen were determined in 20 elephants after oral administration of preliminary 4-, 5-, and 6-mg/kg doses of racemic ibuprofen. Following administration of 4 mg/kg ibuprofen, serum concentrations of ibuprofen peaked at 5 hr at 3.9 +/- 2.07 microg/ml R(-) and 10.65 +/- 5.64 microg/ml S(+) (mean +/- SD) in African elephants (Loxodonta africana) and at 3 hr at 5.14 +/- 1.39 microg/ml R(-) and 13.77 +/- 3.75 microg/ml S(+) in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), respectively. Six-milligram/kilogram dosages resulted in peak serum concentrations of 5.91 +/- 2.17 microg/ml R(-) and 14.82 +/- 9.71 microg/ml S(+) in African elephants, and 5.72 +/- 1.60 microg/ml R(-) and 18.32 +/- 10.35 microg/ml S(+) in Asian elephants. Ibuprofen was eliminated with first-order kinetics characteristic of a single-compartment model with a half-life of 2.2-2.4 hr R(-) and 4.5-5.1 hr S(+) in African elephants and 2.4-2.9 hr R(-) and 5.9-7.7 hr S(+) in Asian elephants. Serum concentrations of R(-) ibuprofen were undetectable at 24 hr, whereas S(+) ibuprofen decreased to below 5 microg/ml 24 hr postadministration in all elephants. The volume of distribution was estimated to be between 322 and 356 ml/kg R(-) and 133 and 173 ml/kg S(+) in Asian elephants and 360-431 ml/kg R(-) and 179-207 ml/kg S(+) in African elephants. Steady-state serum concentrations of ibuprofen ranged from 2.2 to 10.5 microg/ml R(-) and 5.5 to 32.0 microg/ml S(+) (mean: 5.17 +/- 0.7 R(-) and 13.95 +/- 0.9 S(+) microg/ml in African elephants and 5.0 +/- 1.09 microg/ml R(-) and 14.1 +/- 2.8 microg/ml S(+) in Asian elephants). Racemic ibuprofen administered at 6 mg/kg/12 hr for Asian elephants and at 7 mg/kg/12 hr for African elephants results in therapeutic serum concentrations of this antiinflammatory agent.

  12. Prenatal passive transfer of maternal immunity in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nofs, Sally A; Atmar, Robert L; Keitel, Wendy A; Hanlon, Cathleen; Stanton, Jeffrey J; Tan, Jie; Flanagan, Joseph P; Howard, Lauren; Ling, Paul D

    2013-06-15

    Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants exhibit characteristics of endotheliochorial placentation, which is common in carnivore species and is associated with modest maternal to fetal transplacental antibody transfer. However, it remains unknown whether the bulk of passive immune transfer in elephants is achieved prenatally or postnatally through ingestion of colostrum, as has been documented for horses, a species whose medical knowledgebase is often extrapolated for elephants. To address this issue, we took advantage of the fact that many zoo elephants are immunized with tetanus toxoid and/or rabies vaccines as part of their routine health care, allowing a comparison of serum antibody levels against these antigens between dams and neonates. Serum samples were collected from 3 newborn Asian elephant calves at birth (before ingestion of colostrum); 2-4 days after birth; and 2-3 months of age. The findings indicate that the newborns had anti-tetanus toxoid and anti-rabies titers that were equivalent to or higher than the titers of their dams from birth to approximately 3 months of age, suggesting that the majority of maternal-to-fetal transfer is transplacental and higher than expected based on the architecture of the Asian elephant placenta.

  13. Pharmacokinetics of orally administered phenylbutazone in African and Asian elephants (Loxodonta africana and Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bechert, Ursula; Christensen, J Mark; Nguyen, C; Neelkant, R; Bendas, E

    2008-06-01

    The pharmacokinetic parameters of phenylbutazone were determined in 18 elephants (Loxodonta africana and Elephas maximus) after single-dose oral administration of 2, 3, and 4 mg/kg phenylbutazone, as well as multiple-dose administrations with a 4-wk washout period between trials. After administration of 2 mg/kg phenylbutazone, mean serum concentrations peaked in approximately 7.5 hr at 4.3 +/- 2.02 microg/ml and 9.7 hr at 7.1 +/- 2.36 microg/ml for African and Asian elephants, respectively, while 3 mg/kg dosages resulted in peak serum concentrations of 7.2 +/- 4.06 microg/ml in 8.4 hr and 12.1 +/- 3.13 microg/ml in 14 hr. The harmonic mean half-life was long, ranging between 13 and 15 hr and 39 and 45 hr for African and Asian elephants, respectively. There was evidence of enterohepatic cycling of phenylbutazone in Asian elephants. Significant differences (P < 0.0001) in pharmacokinetic values occurred between African and Asian elephants for clearance (27.9 and 7.6 ml/hr/kg, respectively), terminal half-life (15.0 and 38.7 hr, respectively), and mean residence time (22.5 and 55.5 hr, respectively) using 2-mg/kg dosages as an example. This suggests that different treatment regimens for Asian and African elephants should be used. There were no apparent gender differences in these parameters for either elephant species.

  14. PROPOSED SIMPLE METHOD FOR ELECTROCARDIOGRAM RECORDING IN FREE-RANGING ASIAN ELEPHANTS (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Norin; Pouchelon, Jean Louis; Bouvard, Jonathan; Sillero, Leonor Camacho; Huynh, Minh; Segalini, Vincent; Point, Lisa; Croce, Veronica; Rigaux, Goulven; Highwood, Jack; Chetboul, Valérie

    2016-03-01

    Electrocardiography represents a relevant diagnostic tool for detecting cardiac disease in animals. Elephants can present various congenital and acquired cardiovascular diseases. However, few electrophysiologic studies have been reported in captive elephants, mainly due to challenging technical difficulties in obtaining good-quality electrocardiogram (ECG) tracings, and no data are currently available for free-ranging Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). The purpose of this pilot prospective study was to evaluate the feasibility of using a simple method for recording ECG tracings in wild, apparently healthy, unsedated Asian elephants (n = 7) in the standing position. Successful six-lead recordings (I, II, III, aVR, aVL, and aVF) were obtained, with the aVL lead providing the best-quality tracings in most animals. Variables measured in the aVL lead included heart rate, amplitudes and duration of the P waves, QRS complexes, T and U waves, and duration of the PR, QT, and QU intervals. A negative deflection following positive P waves, representative of an atrial repolarization wave (Ta wave), was observed for five out of the seven elephants.

  15. The occurrence of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus): first case of EEHV4 in Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sripiboon, Supaphen; Tankaew, Pallop; Lungka, Grishda; Thitaram, Chatchote

    2013-03-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV) is a type of herpesvirus that causes acute hemorrhagic disease in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and is often fatal, especially in calves. This study describes the postmortem evaluation of two captive-born Asian elephants (2 and 3 yr of age, respectively) diagnosed with EEHV in Thailand. Both elephants presented only mild depression, lethargy, and anorexia before death within 24 hr of symptom onset. Necropsies were performed, and tissue samples were tested for EEHV viral presence using polymerase chain reaction. Molecular and phylogenetic evidence illustrated two types of EEHV, which were closely related to EEHV1A in Case 1 and EEHV4 in Case 2. Pathologic findings differed between the cases. More specific organ tropism was found in Case 1, where mainly the cardiovascular system was affected. In contrast, in Case 2, hemorrhages were noted in most organs, including in the gastrointestinal, respiratory, and cardiovascular systems. This report is the first to document EEHV4 in Asia and the second case of this strain to be identified in an elephant worldwide.

  16. Conflict over the conservation of the Asian elephant ( Elephas maximus ) in Bangladesh

    OpenAIRE

    Sarker, Abul Hasnat Mohammad Raihan

    2011-01-01

    The major objective of this thesis was to evaluate the relationship between the inhabitants of nearby villages and the authorities for four protected areas in Bangladesh. The particular focus of the study was the existing conflict between human interests and the conservation of wild Asian elephants, Elephas maximus. The thesis includes an assessment of human attitudes towards elephants as well as towards the conservation authorities. Human perceptions of conservation are a complex issue and d...

  17. Pharmacokinetics of amoxicillin trihydrate in male Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) following intramuscular administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinphithakkul, P; Klangkaew, N; Sanyathitiseree, P; Giorgi, M; Kumagai, S; Poapolathep, A; Poapolathep, S

    2016-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the pharmacokinetic characteristics of amoxicillin (AMX) trihydrate in male Asian elephants, Elephas maximus, following intramuscular administration at two dosages of 5.5 and 11 mg/kg body weight (b.w.). Blood samples were collected from 0.5 up to 72 h. The concentration of AMX in elephant plasma was measured using liquid chromatography electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. AMX was measurable up to 24 h after administration at two dosages. Peak plasma concentration (Cmax ) was 1.20 ± 0.39 μg/mL after i.m. administration at a dosage of 5.5 mg/kg b.w., whereas it was 3.40 ± 0.63 μg/mL at a dosage of 11 mg/kg b.w. A noncompartment model was developed to describe the disposition of AMX in Asian elephants. Based on the preliminary findings found in this research, the dosage of 5.5 and 11 mg/kg b.w. produced drug plasma concentrations higher than 0.25 mg/mL for 24 h after i.m. administration. Thereafter, i.m. administration with AMX at a dosage of 5.5 mg/kg b.w. appeared a more suitable dose than 11 mg/kg b.w. However, more studies are needed to determine AMX clinical effectiveness in elephants.

  18. Social life of captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in Southern India: implications for elephant welfare.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanitha, Varadharajan; Thiyagesan, Krishnamoorthy; Baskaran, Nagarajan

    2011-01-01

    Asian elephants in the wild live in complex social societies; in captivity, however, management often occurs in solitary conditions, especially at the temples and private places of India. To investigate the effect of social isolation, this study assessed the social group sizes and the presence of stereotypies among 140 captive Asian elephants managed in 3 captive systems (private, temple, and forest department) in Tamil Nadu, India, between 2003 and 2005. The majority of the facilities in the private (82%) and temple (95%) systems held a single elephant without opportunity for social interaction. The forest department managed the elephants in significantly larger groups than the private and temple systems. Among the 3 systems, the proportion of elephants with stereotypies was the highest in temple (49%) followed by private system (26%) and the forest department facility (6%); this correlates with the social isolation trend observed in the 3 systems and suggests a possible link between social isolation and abnormal elephant behavior separate from other environmental factors. The results of this study indicate it would be of greater benefit to elephant well being to keep the patchily distributed solitary temple and private elephants who are socially compatible and free from contagious diseases in small social groups at "common elephant houses" for socialization.

  19. Asian elephants (Elephas maximus reassure others in distress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua M. Plotnik

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Contact directed by uninvolved bystanders toward others in distress, often termed consolation, is uncommon in the animal kingdom, thus far only demonstrated in the great apes, canines, and corvids. Whereas the typical agonistic context of such contact is relatively rare within natural elephant families, other causes of distress may trigger similar, other-regarding responses. In a study carried out at an elephant camp in Thailand, we found that elephants affiliated significantly more with other individuals through directed, physical contact and vocal communication following a distress event than in control periods. In addition, bystanders affiliated with each other, and matched the behavior and emotional state of the first distressed individual, suggesting emotional contagion. The initial distress responses were overwhelmingly directed toward ambiguous stimuli, thus making it difficult to determine if bystanders reacted to the distressed individual or showed a delayed response to the same stimulus. Nonetheless, the directionality of the contacts and their nature strongly suggest attention toward the emotional states of conspecifics. The elephants’ behavior is therefore best classified with similar consolation responses by apes, possibly based on convergent evolution of empathic capacities.

  20. Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus 5, a newly recognized elephant herpesvirus associated with clinical and subclinical infections in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkins, Lisa; Zong, Jian-Chao; Tan, Jie; Mejia, Alicia; Heaggans, Sarah Y; Nofs, Sally A; Stanton, Jeffrey J; Flanagan, Joseph P; Howard, Lauren; Latimer, Erin; Stevens, Martina R; Hoffman, Daryl S; Hayward, Gary S; Ling, Paul D

    2013-03-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHVs) can cause acute hemorrhagic disease with high mortality rates in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Recently, a new EEHV type known as EEHV5 has been described, but its prevalence and clinical significance remain unknown. In this report, an outbreak of EEHV5 infection in a herd of captive Asian elephants in a zoo was characterized. In February 2011, a 42-yr-old wild-born female Asian elephant presented with bilaterally swollen temporal glands, oral mucosal hyperemia, vesicles on the tongue, and generalized lethargy. The elephant had a leukopenia and thrombocytopenia. She was treated with flunixin meglumine, famciclovir, and fluids. Clinical signs of illness resolved gradually over 2 wk, and the white blood cell count and platelets rebounded to higher-than-normal values. EEHV5 viremia was detectable starting 1 wk before presentation and peaked at the onset of clinical illness. EEHV5 shedding in trunk secretions peaked after viremia resolved and continued for more than 2 mo. EEHV5 trunk shedding from a female herd mate without any detectable viremia was detected prior to onset of clinical disease in the 42-yr-old elephant, indicating reactivation rather than primary infection in this elephant. Subsequent EEHV5 viremia and trunk shedding was documented in the other five elephants in the herd, who remained asymptomatic, except for 1 day of temporal gland swelling in an otherwise-healthy 1-yr-old calf. Unexpectedly, the two elephants most recently introduced into the herd 40 mo previously shed a distinctive EEHV5 strain from that seen in the other five elephants. This is the first report to document the kinetics of EEHV5 infection in captive Asian elephants and to provide evidence that this virus can cause illness in some animals.

  1. PHARMACOKINETICS OF A SINGLE DOSE OF METRONIDAZOLE AFTER RECTAL ADMINISTRATION IN CAPTIVE ASIAN ELEPHANTS (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sander, Samantha J; Siegal-Willott, Jessica L; Ziegler, Jessie; Lee, Elizabeth; Tell, Lisa; Murray, Suzan

    2016-03-01

    Metronidazole is a nitroimidazole antibacterial and antiprotozoal drug with bacteriocidal activity against a broad range of anaerobic bacteria. It is a recognized treatment for elephants diagnosed with anaerobic bacterial infection or protozoal disease or exhibiting signs of colonic impaction, diarrhea, and colic. This study evaluated the pharmacokinetics of rectally administered metronidazole (15 mg/kg) in five adult female Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Serum samples were collected from each animal for 96 hr after rectal administration of metronidazole. Serum concentrations of metronidazole and its primary metabolite, hydroxymetronidazole, were measured via ultraperformance liquid chromatography. Data were analyzed via a noncompartmental pharmacokinetic approach. Results indicated that serum levels of metronidazole were quantifiable at the 0.25 hr time point and absent in all elephants by the 96 hr time point. The serum peak concentration (mean ± SD, 13.15 ± 2.59 μg/ml) and area under the curve from time 0 to infinity (mean ± SD, 108.79 ± 24.77 hr × μg/ml) were higher than that reported in domestic horses after similar usage. Concurrently, the time of maximum serum concentration (mean ± SD, 1.2 ± 0.45 hr) and terminal elimination half-life (harmonic mean ± pseudo-SD, 7.85 ± 0.93 hr) were longer when compared to equine reports. Rectal administration of metronidazole was well tolerated and rapidly absorbed in all study elephants. Based on the findings in this study, metronidazole administered at a single dose of 15 mg/kg per rectum in the Asian elephant is likely to result in serum concentrations above 4 μg/ml for 8 hr and above 2 μg/ml for 24 hr after treatment is administered. Dosing recommendations should reflect the mean inhibitory concentration of metronidazole for each pathogen.

  2. Olfactory discrimination ability of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) for structurally related odorants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizvanovic, Alisa; Amundin, Mats; Laska, Matthias

    2013-02-01

    Using a food-rewarded two-choice instrumental conditioning paradigm, we assessed the ability of Asian elephants, Elephas maximus, to discriminate between 2 sets of structurally related odorants. We found that the animals successfully discriminated between all 12 odor pairs involving members of homologous series of aliphatic 1-alcohols, n-aldehydes, 2-ketones, and n-carboxylic acids even when the stimuli differed from each other by only 1 carbon. With all 4 chemical classes, the elephants displayed a positive correlation between discrimination performance and structural similarity of odorants in terms of differences in carbon chain length. The animals also successfully discriminated between all 12 enantiomeric odor pairs tested. An analysis of odor structure-activity relationships suggests that a combination of molecular structural properties rather than a single molecular feature may be responsible for the discriminability of enantiomers. Compared with other species tested previously on the same sets of odor pairs (or on subsets thereof), the Asian elephants performed at least as well as mice and clearly better than human subjects, squirrel monkeys, pigtail macaques, South African fur seals, and honeybees. Further comparisons suggest that neither the relative nor the absolute size of the olfactory bulbs appear to be reliable predictors of between-species differences in olfactory discrimination capabilities. In contrast, we found a positive correlation between the number of functional olfactory receptor genes and the proportion of discriminable enantiomeric odor pairs. Taken together, the results of the present study support the notion that the sense of smell may play an important role in regulating the behavior of Asian elephants.

  3. CLINICAL INFECTION OF TWO CAPTIVE ASIAN ELEPHANTS (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS) WITH ELEPHANT ENDOTHELIOTROPIC HERPESVIRUS 1B.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuery, Angela; Tan, Jie; Peng, RongSheng; Flanagan, Joseph P; Tocidlowski, Maryanne E; Howard, Lauren L; Ling, Paul D

    2016-03-01

    The ability of prior infection from one elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV) type to protect against clinical or lethal infection from others remains an important question. This report describes viremia and subsequent shedding of EEHV1B in two juvenile 4-yr-old Asian elephants within 3 wk or 2 mo following significant infections caused by the rarely seen EEHV4. High levels of EEHV1B shedding were detected in the first elephant prior to emergence of infection and viremia in the second animal. The EEHV1B virus associated with both infections was identical to the strain causing infection in two herd mates previously. High EEHV viremia correlated with leukopenia and thrombocytopenia, which was followed by leukocytosis and thrombocytosis when clinical signs started to resolve. The observations from these cases should be beneficial for helping other institutions monitor and treat elephants infected with EEHV1, the most common virus associated with lethal hemorrhagic disease.

  4. CLINICAL INFECTION OF CAPTIVE ASIAN ELEPHANTS (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS) WITH ELEPHANT ENDOTHELIOTROPIC HERPESVIRUS 4.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuery, Angela; Browning, Geoffrey R; Tan, Jie; Long, Simon; Hayward, Gary S; Cox, Sherry K; Flanagan, Joseph P; Tocidlowski, Maryanne E; Howard, Lauren L; Ling, Paul D

    2016-03-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV) can cause lethal hemorrhagic disease in juvenile Asian elephants. A number of EEHV types and subtypes exist, where most deaths have been caused by EEHV1A and EEHV1B. EEHV4 has been attributed to two deaths, but as both diagnoses were made postmortem, EEHV4 disease has not yet been observed and recorded clinically. In this brief communication, two cases of EEHV4 infection in juvenile elephants at the Houston Zoo are described, where both cases were resolved following intensive treatment and administration of famciclovir. A quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction detected EEHV4 viremia that correlated with clinical signs. High levels of EEHV4 shedding from trunk wash secretions of the first viremic elephant correlated with subsequent infection of the second elephant with EEHV4. It is hoped that the observations made in these cases--and the successful treatment regimen used--will help other institutions identify and treat EEHV4 infection in the future.

  5. Generation and characterization of antibodies against Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) IgG, IgM, and IgA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humphreys, Alan F; Tan, Jie; Peng, RongSheng; Benton, Susan M; Qin, Xiang; Worley, Kim C; Mikulski, Rose L; Chow, Dar-Chone; Palzkill, Timothy G; Ling, Paul D

    2015-01-01

    Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) immunity is poorly characterized and understood. This gap in knowledge is particularly concerning as Asian elephants are an endangered species threatened by a newly discovered herpesvirus known as elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV), which is the leading cause of death for captive Asian elephants born after 1980 in North America. While reliable diagnostic assays have been developed to detect EEHV DNA, serological assays to evaluate elephant anti-EEHV antibody responses are lacking and will be needed for surveillance and epidemiological studies and also for evaluating potential treatments or vaccines against lethal EEHV infection. Previous studies have shown that Asian elephants produce IgG in serum, but they failed to detect IgM and IgA, further hampering development of informative serological assays for this species. To begin to address this issue, we determined the constant region genomic sequence of Asian elephant IgM and obtained some limited protein sequence information for putative serum IgA. The information was used to generate or identify specific commercial antisera reactive against IgM and IgA isotypes. In addition, we generated a monoclonal antibody against Asian elephant IgG. These three reagents were used to demonstrate that all three immunoglobulin isotypes are found in Asian elephant serum and milk and to detect antibody responses following tetanus toxoid booster vaccination or antibodies against a putative EEHV structural protein. The results indicate that these new reagents will be useful for developing sensitive and specific assays to detect and characterize elephant antibody responses for any pathogen or vaccine, including EEHV.

  6. Pulmonary tuberculosis in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus): histologic lesions with correlation to local immune responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landolfi, J A; Terio, K A; Miller, M; Junecko, B F; Reinhart, T

    2015-05-01

    Although Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection is an important health concern for Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), no studies have evaluated the associated local immune responses or histologic lesions. In primates including humans, latent tuberculosis is distinguished by well-organized granulomas with TH1 cytokine expression, whereas active disease is characterized by poorly organized inflammation and local imbalance in TH1/TH2 cytokines. This study examined archival, formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded lung samples from 5 tuberculosis-negative and 9 tuberculosis-positive Asian elephants. Lesions were assessed by light microscopy, and lymphoid infiltrates were characterized by CD3 and CD20 immunolabeling. Expression of TH1 (interferon [IFN]-γ, tumor necrosis factor [TNF]-α) and TH2 (interleukin [IL]-4, IL-10, transforming growth factor [TGF]-β) cytokines was determined using in situ hybridization. In 6 of 9 samples, inflammation was similar to the pattern of primate active disease with low to moderate numbers of lymphocytes, most of which were CD20 positive. In 1 sample, inflammation was most similar to latent tuberculosis in primates with numerous CD3-positive lymphocytes. Expression of IFN-γ was detected in 3 of 8 tuberculosis-positive samples. Expression of TNF-α was detected in 3 of 8 positive samples, including the one with latent morphology. Low-level expression of IL-4 was present in 4 of 8 positive samples. Only single positive samples displayed expression of IL-10 and TGF-β. Tuberculosis-negative samples generally lacked cytokine expression. Results showed heterogeneity in lesions of elephant tuberculosis similar to those of latent and active disease in primates, with variable expression of both TH1 and TH2 cytokines.

  7. Comparative sequence analyses of genome and transcriptome reveal novel transcripts and variants in the Asian elephant Elephas maximus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Puli Chandramouli; Sinha, Ishani; Kelkar, Ashwin; Habib, Farhat; Pradhan, Saurabh J; Sukumar, Raman; Galande, Sanjeev

    2015-12-01

    The Asian elephant Elephas maximus and the African elephant Loxodonta africana that diverged 5-7 million years ago exhibit differences in their physiology, behaviour and morphology. A comparative genomics approach would be useful and necessary for evolutionary and functional genetic studies of elephants. We performed sequencing of E. maximus and map to L. africana at ~15X coverage. Through comparative sequence analyses, we have identified Asian elephant specific homozygous, non-synonymous single nucleotide variants (SNVs) that map to 1514 protein coding genes, many of which are involved in olfaction. We also present the first report of a high-coverage transcriptome sequence in E. maximus from peripheral blood lymphocytes. We have identified 103 novel protein coding transcripts and 66-long non-coding (lnc)RNAs. We also report the presence of 181 protein domains unique to elephants when compared to other Afrotheria species. Each of these findings can be further investigated to gain a better understanding of functional differences unique to elephant species, as well as those unique to elephantids in comparison with other mammals. This work therefore provides a valuable resource to explore the immense research potential of comparative analyses of transcriptome and genome sequences in the Asian elephant.

  8. Comparative sequence analyses of genome and transcriptome reveal novel transcripts and variants in the Asian elephant Elephas maximus

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Puli Chandramouli Reddy; Ishani Sinha; Ashwin Kelkar; Farhat Habib; Saurabh J Pradhan; Raman Sukumar; Sanjeev Galande

    2015-12-01

    The Asian elephant Elephas maximus and the African elephant Loxodonta africana that diverged 5-7 million years ago exhibit differences in their physiology, behaviour and morphology. A comparative genomics approach would be useful and necessary for evolutionary and functional genetic studies of elephants. We performed sequencing of E. maximus and map to L. africana at ∼ 15X coverage. Through comparative sequence analyses, we have identified Asian elephant specific homozygous, non-synonymous single nucleotide variants (SNVs) that map to 1514 protein coding genes, many of which are involved in olfaction. We also present the first report of a high-coverage transcriptome sequence in E. maximus from peripheral blood lymphocytes. We have identified 103 novel protein coding transcripts and 66-long non-coding (Inc)RNAs. We also report the presence of 181 protein domains unique to elephants when compared to other Afrotheria species. Each of these findings can be further investigated to gain a better understanding of functional differences unique to elephant species, as well as those unique to elephantids in comparison with other mammals. This work therefore provides a valuable resource to explore the immense research potential of comparative analyses of transcriptome and genome sequences in the Asian elephant.

  9. Behavior of Asian elephant (Elephas maximus in a land-use mosaic: conservation implications for human-elephant coexistence in the Anamalai hills, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ananda kumar Mavatur

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Understanding behavior of elephants in human-dominated landscapes can facilitate creation of management tools for conflict resolution and help foster human-elephant coexistence. We studied behavior of Asian elephants (Elephas Maximus in the Valparai plateau, a 220 km² landscape matrix of rainforest fragments, tea, coffee, and Eucalyptus plantations, and in relation to humans in the Anamalai Hills of the Western Ghats of India. We employed scan sampling method for data collection. Feeding by elephants was lowest in open canopy habitat of tea, and it gradually increased in canopy covered plantations of coffee and Eucalyptus and in densely covered natural vegetation. Vigilance behavior of elephants was lowest in forest fragments and riverine vegetation as they could avoid encountering humans. This behavior peaked in tea plantations due to intense human activity there. Elephants maintained closer inter-individual distances in tea and this distance gradually increased in canopy habitats of coffee, Eucalyptus and natural vegetation. Predictor variables such as human presence and proximity to elephants resulted in reduced feeding and increased agitation in elephants while distance of settlements to elephants did not influence behavior of elephants. We found that fewer than 10 people at a threshold distance of more than 30 m had minimum impact on feeding, resting, and movement and decreased vigilant behavior in elephants. We, therefore, suggest that protection and non-conversion of canopy habitats and maintaining minimum threshold distance of humans from elephants would foster normal activities of elephants and help promote human-elephant coexistence in such landscapes.

  10. Visual cues given by humans are not sufficient for Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) to find hidden food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plotnik, Joshua M; Pokorny, Jennifer J; Keratimanochaya, Titiporn; Webb, Christine; Beronja, Hana F; Hennessy, Alice; Hill, James; Hill, Virginia J; Kiss, Rebecca; Maguire, Caitlin; Melville, Beckett L; Morrison, Violet M B; Seecoomar, Dannah; Singer, Benjamin; Ukehaxhaj, Jehona; Vlahakis, Sophia K; Ylli, Dora; Clayton, Nicola S; Roberts, John; Fure, Emilie L; Duchatelier, Alicia P; Getz, David

    2013-01-01

    Recent research suggests that domesticated species--due to artificial selection by humans for specific, preferred behavioral traits--are better than wild animals at responding to visual cues given by humans about the location of hidden food. \\Although this seems to be supported by studies on a range of domesticated (including dogs, goats and horses) and wild (including wolves and chimpanzees) animals, there is also evidence that exposure to humans positively influences the ability of both wild and domesticated animals to follow these same cues. Here, we test the performance of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) on an object choice task that provides them with visual-only cues given by humans about the location of hidden food. Captive elephants are interesting candidates for investigating how both domestication and human exposure may impact cue-following as they represent a non-domesticated species with almost constant human interaction. As a group, the elephants (n = 7) in our study were unable to follow pointing, body orientation or a combination of both as honest signals of food location. They were, however, able to follow vocal commands with which they were already familiar in a novel context, suggesting the elephants are able to follow cues if they are sufficiently salient. Although the elephants' inability to follow the visual cues provides partial support for the domestication hypothesis, an alternative explanation is that elephants may rely more heavily on other sensory modalities, specifically olfaction and audition. Further research will be needed to rule out this alternative explanation.

  11. Visual cues given by humans are not sufficient for Asian elephants (Elephas maximus to find hidden food.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua M Plotnik

    Full Text Available Recent research suggests that domesticated species--due to artificial selection by humans for specific, preferred behavioral traits--are better than wild animals at responding to visual cues given by humans about the location of hidden food. \\Although this seems to be supported by studies on a range of domesticated (including dogs, goats and horses and wild (including wolves and chimpanzees animals, there is also evidence that exposure to humans positively influences the ability of both wild and domesticated animals to follow these same cues. Here, we test the performance of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus on an object choice task that provides them with visual-only cues given by humans about the location of hidden food. Captive elephants are interesting candidates for investigating how both domestication and human exposure may impact cue-following as they represent a non-domesticated species with almost constant human interaction. As a group, the elephants (n = 7 in our study were unable to follow pointing, body orientation or a combination of both as honest signals of food location. They were, however, able to follow vocal commands with which they were already familiar in a novel context, suggesting the elephants are able to follow cues if they are sufficiently salient. Although the elephants' inability to follow the visual cues provides partial support for the domestication hypothesis, an alternative explanation is that elephants may rely more heavily on other sensory modalities, specifically olfaction and audition. Further research will be needed to rule out this alternative explanation.

  12. The Days and Nights of Zoo Elephants: Using Epidemiology to Better Understand Stereotypic Behavior of African Elephants (Loxodonta africana and Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus in North American Zoos.

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    Brian J Greco

    Full Text Available Stereotypic behavior is an important indicator of compromised welfare. Zoo elephants are documented to perform stereotypic behavior, but the factors that contribute to performance have not been systematically assessed. We collected behavioral data on 89 elephants (47 African [Loxodonta africana], 42 Asian [Elephas maximus] at 39 North American zoos during the summer and winter. Elephants were videoed for a median of 12 daytime hours per season. A subset of 32 elephants (19 African, 13 Asian was also observed live for a median of 10.5 nighttime hours. Percentages of visible behavior scans were calculated from five minute instantaneous samples. Stereotypic behavior was the second most commonly performed behavior (after feeding, making up 15.5% of observations during the daytime and 24.8% at nighttime. Negative binomial regression models fitted with generalized estimating equations were used to determine which social, housing, management, life history, and demographic variables were associated with daytime and nighttime stereotypic behavior rates. Species was a significant risk factor in both models, with Asian elephants at greater risk (daytime: p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 4.087; nighttime: p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 8.015. For both species, spending time housed separately (p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 1.009, and having experienced inter-zoo transfers (p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 1.175, increased the risk of performing higher rates of stereotypy during the day, while spending more time with juvenile elephants (p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 0.985, and engaging with zoo staff reduced this risk (p = 0.018, Risk Ratio = 0.988. At night, spending more time in environments with both indoor and outdoor areas (p = 0.013, Risk Ratio = 0.987 and in larger social groups (p = 0.039, Risk Ratio = 0.752 corresponded with reduced risk of performing higher rates of stereotypy, while having experienced inter-zoo transfers (p = 0.033, Risk Ratio = 1.115 increased this risk. Overall, our results

  13. The Days and Nights of Zoo Elephants: Using Epidemiology to Better Understand Stereotypic Behavior of African Elephants (Loxodonta africana) and Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus) in North American Zoos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greco, Brian J; Meehan, Cheryl L; Hogan, Jen N; Leighty, Katherine A; Mellen, Jill; Mason, Georgia J; Mench, Joy A

    2016-01-01

    Stereotypic behavior is an important indicator of compromised welfare. Zoo elephants are documented to perform stereotypic behavior, but the factors that contribute to performance have not been systematically assessed. We collected behavioral data on 89 elephants (47 African [Loxodonta africana], 42 Asian [Elephas maximus]) at 39 North American zoos during the summer and winter. Elephants were videoed for a median of 12 daytime hours per season. A subset of 32 elephants (19 African, 13 Asian) was also observed live for a median of 10.5 nighttime hours. Percentages of visible behavior scans were calculated from five minute instantaneous samples. Stereotypic behavior was the second most commonly performed behavior (after feeding), making up 15.5% of observations during the daytime and 24.8% at nighttime. Negative binomial regression models fitted with generalized estimating equations were used to determine which social, housing, management, life history, and demographic variables were associated with daytime and nighttime stereotypic behavior rates. Species was a significant risk factor in both models, with Asian elephants at greater risk (daytime: p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 4.087; nighttime: p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 8.015). For both species, spending time housed separately (p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 1.009), and having experienced inter-zoo transfers (p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 1.175), increased the risk of performing higher rates of stereotypy during the day, while spending more time with juvenile elephants (p<0.001, Risk Ratio = 0.985), and engaging with zoo staff reduced this risk (p = 0.018, Risk Ratio = 0.988). At night, spending more time in environments with both indoor and outdoor areas (p = 0.013, Risk Ratio = 0.987) and in larger social groups (p = 0.039, Risk Ratio = 0.752) corresponded with reduced risk of performing higher rates of stereotypy, while having experienced inter-zoo transfers (p = 0.033, Risk Ratio = 1.115) increased this risk. Overall, our results indicate

  14. Nonfatal clinical presentation of elephant endotheliotropic herpes virus discovered in a group of captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaftenaar, W; Reid, C; Martina, B; Fickel, J; Osterhaus, A D M E

    2010-12-01

    Several different strains of elephant endotheliotropic herpes virus-1 (EEHV-1) have been identified via polymerase chain reaction (PCR) techniques in both African and Asian elephants. EEHV-1 has been identified in both cutaneous lesions in healthy African elephants and fatal cases of hemorrhagic syndrome in Asian elephants. However, until now, no EEHV-1 strain has been identified or associated with otherwise healthy Asian elephants. This article describes recurrent nonendothelial lesions associated with EEHV-1 infection in a herd of Asian elephants not exhibiting fatal hemorrhagic syndrome. Genotypes of EEHV-1 strains, based on viral DNA polymerase and glycoprotein B, associated with fatal hemorrhagic syndrome, were compared to those identified in nonendothelial lesions. The same EEHV-1 genotypes were identified in fatal cases and mucosal lesions in otherwise healthy Asian elephants in this herd. Further studies of the Asian elephant immune system and virologic studies to determine the triggers of tissue tropism are needed before any conclusion can be reached. Elephant endotheliotropic herpes virus, EEHV, herpetic lesions, tropism.

  15. THE IMPACT OF ELEPHANT ENDOTHELIOTROPIC HERPESVIRUS ON THE CAPTIVE ASIAN ELEPHANT (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS) POPULATION OF THE UNITED KINGDOM AND IRELAND (1995-2013).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kendall, Rebecca; Howard, Lauren; Masters, Nic; Grant, Robyn

    2016-06-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV) is one of the most devastating infections and causes of mortality in captive Asian elephant ( Elephas maximus ) populations. Eight confirmed fatal EEHV cases have occurred since 1995 within the captive Asian elephant population of the United Kingdom and Ireland. This report aims to review the impact of EEHV on the captive Asian elephant population in the United Kingdom and Ireland, document and compare fatal cases, and recommend a framework of monitoring within the United Kingdom and Ireland to increase the success of treatment of EEHV hemorrhagic disease (EEHV HD) in the future. Six zoologic institutions (which include zoos, safari parks, and wildlife parks) that currently house or have previously housed a captive Asian elephant group were included in this report. Medical records and postmortem results were collected from four of these institutions for each confirmed fatal case. EEHV HD was found to be responsible for 29.6% of fatalities in Asian elephants born in captivity in the United Kingdom and Ireland between 1995 and 2013. Following a review of all the cases, it is shown that although clinical signs may be associated with specific EEHV species, the swiftness of disease progression means that most body tissues are impacted 1-6 days following the presentation of visible clinical signs and treatment is less likely to succeed. Therefore, EEHV monitoring should consist of conducting regular polymerase chain reaction analysis of whole blood samples from at-risk, young Asian elephants aged 1-8 yr in order for subclinical viremia to be identified early and treatment to be started before the appearance of visible clinical signs.

  16. Reference intervals for acute phase protein and serum protein electrophoresis values in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaza, Ramiro; Wiedner, Ellen; Hiser, Sarah; Cray, Carolyn

    2014-09-01

    Acute phase protein (APP) immunoassays and serum protein electrophoresis (SPEP) are assays for evaluating the inflammatory response and have use as diagnostic tools in a variety of species. Acute phase proteins are markers of inflammation that are highly conserved across different species while SPEP separates and quantifies serum protein fractions based on their physical properties. In the current study, serum samples from 35 clinically healthy Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) were analyzed using automated assays for C-reactive protein, serum amyloid A, and haptoglobin and SPEP. Robust methods were used to generate reference intervals for the APPs: C-reactive protein (1.3-12.8 mg/l), serum amyloid A (0-47.5 mg/l), and haptoglobin (0-1.10 mg/ml). In addition, SPEP was performed on these samples to establish reference intervals for each protein fraction. A combination of APPs and SPEP measurements are valuable adjunctive diagnostic tools in elephant health care.

  17. Heart rate variability in relation to stress in the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vézina-Audette, Raphaël; Herry, Christophe; Burns, Patrick; Frasch, Martin; Chave, Emmanuelle; Theoret, Christine

    2016-01-01

    This study describes a safe, reliable, and accessible means to measure heart rate (HR) and HR variability (HRV) and evaluates the use of HRV as a physiological correlate of stress in the Asian elephant. A probabilistic model indicates that HRV measurements may adequately distinguish between stressed and non-stressed elephants. PMID:26933266

  18. Endocrine correlates of musth in free-ranging Asian elephants (Elephas maximus determined by non-invasive faecal steroid hormone metabolite measurements.

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    Ratna Ghosal

    Full Text Available The occurrence of musth, a period of elevated levels of androgens and heightened sexual activity, has been well documented for the male Asian elephant (Elephas maximus. However, the relationship between androgen-dependent musth and adrenocortical function in this species is unclear. The current study is the first assessment of testicular and adrenocortical function in free-ranging male Asian elephants by measuring levels of testosterone (androgen and cortisol (glucocorticoid--a physiological indicator of stress metabolites in faeces. During musth, males expectedly showed significant elevation in faecal testosterone metabolite levels. Interestingly, glucocorticoid metabolite concentrations remained unchanged between musth and non-musth periods. This observation is contrary to that observed with wild and captive African elephant bulls and captive Asian bull elephants. Our results show that musth may not necessarily represent a stressful condition in free-ranging male Asian elephants.

  19. Kinetics of viral loads and genotypic analysis of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus-1 infection in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanton, Jeffrey J; Zong, Jian-Chao; Eng, Crystal; Howard, Lauren; Flanagan, Joe; Stevens, Martina; Schmitt, Dennis; Wiedner, Ellen; Graham, Danielle; Junge, Randall E; Weber, Martha A; Fischer, Martha; Mejia, Alicia; Tan, Jie; Latimer, Erin; Herron, Alan; Hayward, Gary S; Ling, Paul D

    2013-03-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHVs) can cause fatal hemorrhagic disease in juvenile Asian elephants (Elphas maximus); however, sporadic shedding of virus in trunk washes collected from healthy elephants also has been detected. Data regarding the relationship of viral loads in blood compared with trunk washes are lacking, and questions about whether elephants can undergo multiple infections with EEHVs have not been addressed previously. Real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction was used to determine the kinetics of EEHV1 loads, and genotypic analysis was performed on EEHV1 DNA detected in various fluid samples obtained from five Asian elephants that survived detectable EEHV1 DNAemia on at least two separate occasions. In three elephants displaying clinical signs of illness, preclinical EEHV1 DNAemia was detectable, and peak whole-blood viral loads occurred 3-8 days after the onset of clinical signs. In two elephants with EEHV1 DNAemia that persisted for 7-21 days, no clinical signs of illness were observed. Detection of EEHV1 DNA in trunk washes peaked approximately 21 days after DNAemia, and viral genotypes detected during DNAemia matched those detected in subsequent trunk washes from the same elephant. In each of the five elephants, two distinct EEHV1 genotypes were identified in whole blood and trunk washes at different time points. In each case, these genotypes represented both an EEHV1A and an EEHV1B subtype. These data suggest that knowledge of viral loads could be useful for the management of elephants before or during clinical illness. Furthermore, sequential infection with both EEHV1 subtypes occurs in Asian elephants, suggesting that they do not elicit cross-protective sterilizing immunity. These data will be useful to individuals involved in the husbandry and clinical care of Asian elephants.

  20. Investigation of individual and group variability in estrous cycle characteristics in female Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) at the Oregon Zoo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glaeser, S S; Hunt, K E; Martin, M S; Finnegan, M; Brown, J L

    2012-07-15

    Evaluating ovarian cycle activity through longitudinal progestagen monitoring is important for optimizing breeding management of captive elephants and understanding impact of life events (births, deaths, and transfers) on reproductive function. This study summarized serum progestagen profiles for eight Asian mainland elephants (Elephas maximus indicus) and one Bornean elephant (E. maximus borneensis) at the Oregon Zoo over a 20-yr interval, and represents the longest longitudinal dataset evaluated to date. Estrous cycle characteristics were more varied than previously reported for this species, with an overall duration of 12 to 19 wk, luteal phase duration of 4 to 15 wk, and follicular phase duration of 2 to 12 wk. In general, there was more cycle variability across than within individual elephants. Compared with other elephants in the group, the Borneo female exhibited consistently longer cycle lengths, higher progestagen concentrations, and greater cycle variability; however, it is not known if this represents a subspecies or an individual difference. Cycle durations did not appear to change over time or with age, and the first pubertal cycle was similar to subsequent cycles. Variability in duration of the follicular phase was greater than that of the luteal phase. In addition, there was a significant negative relationship between luteal and follicular phase durations, suggesting a possible regulatory role of the follicular phase in maintaining a relatively consistent cycle duration within individuals. Overall, we found these elephants to be highly resilient in that major life events (births, deaths, and changes in herd structure) had minimal effect on cycle dynamics over time. In conclusion, the higher range in cycle phase characteristics is likely because of the larger number of elephants studied and longer duration of longitudinal monitoring, and may be more representative of the captive population as a whole. Furthermore, identification of significant

  1. Immune responses of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) to commercial tetanus toxoid vaccine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindsay, William A; Wiedner, Ellen; Isaza, Ramiro; Townsend, Hugh G G; Boleslawski, Maria; Lunn, D P

    2010-02-15

    Although captive elephants are commonly vaccinated annually against tetanus using commercially available tetanus toxoid vaccines marketed for use in horses and livestock, no data exists to prove that tetanus toxoid vaccination produces measurable antibody titers in elephants. An ELISA test was created to measure antibody responses to tetanus toxoid vaccinations in 22 Asian elephants ranging in age from 24 to 56 years (mean age 39 years) over a 7-month period. All animals had been previously vaccinated with tetanus toxoid vaccine, with the last booster administered 4 years before the start of the study. The great majority of elephants had titers prior to booster vaccination, and following revaccination all elephants demonstrated anamnestic increases in titers, indicating that this species does respond to tetanus vaccination. Surprisingly older animals mounted a significantly higher response to revaccination than did younger animals.

  2. Development of a SYBR Green I-based real-time PCR for detection of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus 1 infection in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sariya, Ladawan; Chatsirivech, Jarin; Suksai, Parut; Wiriyarat, Witthawat; Songjaeng, Adisak; Tangsudjai, Siriporn; Kanthasaewee, Oraphan; Maikaew, Umaporn; Chaichoun, Kridsada

    2012-10-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus 1 (EEHV1) can cause fatal hemorrhagic disease in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Several studies have described this virus as a major threat to young Asian elephants. A SYBR Green I-based real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was developed to identify EEHV1 on trunk swabs and necropsied tissues. Two of 29 (6.9%) trunk swab samples from healthy Asian elephants were positive for EEHV1. The viruses were analyzed and classified as EEHV1A based on 231 nucleotides of the terminase gene. Necropsied spleen and heart tissue showed the highest level and second highest levels of DNA virus copy accumulation, respectively. The detection limit of the test was 276 copies/μl of DNA. There was no cross-reaction with other mammalian herpesviruses, such as herpes simplex virus 1 and equine herpesvirus 2. Inter- and intra-assay showed low coefficients of variation values indicating the reproducibility of the test. The results indicated that the test can be practically used for epidemiological study, clinical diagnosis, and management and control of EEHV1.

  3. Causes and correlates of calf mortality in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mar, Khyne U; Lahdenperä, Mirkka; Lummaa, Virpi

    2012-01-01

    Juvenile mortality is a key factor influencing population growth rate in density-independent, predation-free, well-managed captive populations. Currently at least a quarter of all Asian elephants live in captivity, but both the wild and captive populations are unsustainable with the present fertility and calf mortality rates. Despite the need for detailed data on calf mortality to manage effectively populations and to minimize the need for capture from the wild, very little is known of the causes and correlates of calf mortality in Asian elephants. Here we use the world's largest multigenerational demographic dataset on a semi-captive population of Asian elephants compiled from timber camps in Myanmar to investigate the survival of calves (n = 1020) to age five born to captive-born mothers (n = 391) between 1960 and 1999. Mortality risk varied significantly across different ages and was higher for males at any age. Maternal reproductive history was associated with large differences in both stillbirth and liveborn mortality risk: first-time mothers had a higher risk of calf loss as did mothers producing another calf soon (elephants and used in published population viability analyses. A large proportion of deaths were caused by accidents and lack of maternal milk/calf weakness which both might be partly preventable by supplementary feeding of mothers and calves and work reduction of high-risk mothers. Our results on Myanmar timber elephants with an extensive keeping system provide an important comparison to compromised survivorship reported in zoo elephants. They have implications for improving captive working elephant management systems in range countries and for refining population viability analyses with realistic parameter values in order to predict future population size of the Asian elephant.

  4. Causes and correlates of calf mortality in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khyne U Mar

    Full Text Available Juvenile mortality is a key factor influencing population growth rate in density-independent, predation-free, well-managed captive populations. Currently at least a quarter of all Asian elephants live in captivity, but both the wild and captive populations are unsustainable with the present fertility and calf mortality rates. Despite the need for detailed data on calf mortality to manage effectively populations and to minimize the need for capture from the wild, very little is known of the causes and correlates of calf mortality in Asian elephants. Here we use the world's largest multigenerational demographic dataset on a semi-captive population of Asian elephants compiled from timber camps in Myanmar to investigate the survival of calves (n = 1020 to age five born to captive-born mothers (n = 391 between 1960 and 1999. Mortality risk varied significantly across different ages and was higher for males at any age. Maternal reproductive history was associated with large differences in both stillbirth and liveborn mortality risk: first-time mothers had a higher risk of calf loss as did mothers producing another calf soon (<3.7 years after a previous birth, and when giving birth at older age. Stillbirth (4% and pre-weaning mortality (25.6% were considerably lower than those reported for zoo elephants and used in published population viability analyses. A large proportion of deaths were caused by accidents and lack of maternal milk/calf weakness which both might be partly preventable by supplementary feeding of mothers and calves and work reduction of high-risk mothers. Our results on Myanmar timber elephants with an extensive keeping system provide an important comparison to compromised survivorship reported in zoo elephants. They have implications for improving captive working elephant management systems in range countries and for refining population viability analyses with realistic parameter values in order to predict future population

  5. Successful artificial insemination in the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus using chilled and frozen-thawed semen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wongkalasin Warut

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Artificial insemination (AI using frozen-thawed semen is well established and routinely used for breeding in various mammalian species. However, there is no report of the birth of elephant calves following AI with frozen-thawed semen. The objective of the present study was to investigate the fertilizing ability of chilled and frozen-thawed semen in the Asian elephant following artificial insemination (AI. Methods Semen samples were collected by from 8 bulls (age range, 12-to 42-years by manual stimulation. Semen with high quality were either cooled to 4°C or frozen in liquid nitrogen (-196°C before being used for AI. Blood samples collected from ten elephant females (age range, 12-to 52-years were assessed for estrus cycle and elephants with normal cycling were used for AI. Artificial insemination series were conducted during 2003 to 2008; 55 and 2 AI trials were conducted using frozen-thawed and chilled semen, respectively. Pregnancy was detected using transrectal ultrasonography and serum progestagen measurement. Results One female (Khod inseminated with chilled semen became pregnant and gave birth in 2007. The gestation length was 663 days and the sex of the elephant calf was male. One female (Sao inseminated with frozen-thawed semen showed signs of pregnancy by increasing progestagen levels and a fetus was observed for 5 months by transrectal ultrasonography. Conclusion This is the first report showing pregnancy following AI with frozen-thawed semen in the Asian elephant. Successful AI in the Asian elephant using either chilled or frozen-thawed semen is a stepping stone towards applying this technology for genetic improvement of the elephant population.

  6. Qualitative comparison of the cranio-dental osteology of the extant elephants, Elephas Maximus (Asian elephant) and Loxodonta africana (African elephant).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Nancy E

    2010-01-01

    Few osteological descriptions of the extant elephants and no detailed morphological comparison of the two genera, Elephas and Loxodonta, have been done in recent years. In this study, 786 specimens of extant elephants (crania, mandibles, and molars) were examined for characters unique to each species. Differences between sexes in each species were described, as well as differences between subspecies of each species. Striking differences in morphology were noted between sexes of both elephants and between subspecies, which may complement current genetic studies, the focus of which is to determine division at the subspecies or species level, particularly differences between the savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana africana) and the forest elephant (Loxodonta africana cyclotis). In addition, examination of the two living elephants provides an excellent dataset for identifying phylogenetic characters for use in examining evolutionary relationships within and between fossil lineages of elephantids.

  7. Housing and Social Environments of African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) Elephants in North American Zoos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meehan, Cheryl L; Hogan, Jennifer N; Bonaparte-Saller, Mary K; Mench, Joy A

    2016-01-01

    We evaluated 255 African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants living in 68 North American zoos over one year to quantify housing and social variables. All parameters were quantified for the both the day and the night and comparisons were made across these time periods as well as by species and sex. To assess housing, we evaluated not only total exhibit size, but also individual animals' experiences based on the time they spent in the unique environments into which the exhibits were subdivided. Variables developed to assess housing included measurements of area as a function of time (Total Space Experience), environment type (Indoor, Outdoor, In/Out Choice) and time spent on hard and soft flooring. Over the year, Total Space Experience values ranged from 1,273 square feet to 169,692 square feet, with Day values significantly greater than Night values (pSocial factors included number of animals functionally housed together (Social Experience) and social group characteristics such as time spent with juveniles and in mixed-sex groups. Overall Social Experience scores ranged from 1 to 11.2 and were significantly greater during the Day than at Night (psocial or housing differences between African (N = 138) and Asian (N = 117) species or between males (N = 54) and females (N = 201). The most notable exception was Total Space Experience, with African and male elephants having larger Total Space Experience than Asian and female elephants, respectively (P-valuehousing and social variables evaluated herein have been used in a series of subsequent epidemiological analyses relating to various elephant welfare outcomes.

  8. Assessment of viability and acrosomal status of Asian elephant (Elephas maximus sperm after treatment with calcium ionophore and heparin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Sa-ardrit

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge about the acrosomal status of Asian elephant (Elephas maximus sperm is extremely limited. The objective of this study was to evaluate the viability and acrosomal status of Asian elephant sperm following induction by calcium ionophore and heparin using propidium iodide (PI and fluorescein isothiocyanate conjugated peanut agglutinin (FITC-PNA. Semen samples were collected from elephant bulls by manual stimulation. Semen was diluted with extender, cooled to 4°C and transported to a laboratory for the experiment. Sperm cells were incubated in modified Tyrode's medium containing either 1mM calcium ionophore or 10 mg/mℓ heparin for 5 h at 39°C. Sperm recovered at the onset (0 h, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 h of incubation were simultaneously assessed for the viability and acrosomal status using dual staining of FITC-PNA and PI. Results were confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. A progressive increase in the proportion of live-acrosome reacted sperm was observed within 3 h of incubation in both treatment groups which slightly decreased at 4 to5 h of incubation. At 1 to 3 h of incubation, the percentage of live-acrosome reacted sperm induced by calcium ionophore was higher (P < 0.05 than those induced by heparin and the control. However, there were no statistical differences at 4 to 5 h of incubation. A progressive reduction of the percentage of motile sperm was observed in the control as well as both treatment groups. Sperm motility decreased sharply when they were incubated in calcium ionophore compared with incubation in heparin and control groups. These results indicate that the occurrence of live-acrosome reacted sperm in the Asian elephant was induced by calcium ionophore at a rate higher than that induced by heparin.

  9. Analysis of a collagen II degradation protein C2C and a collagen II formation protein CP II in serum of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilgallon, Conor P; Larsen, Scott; Wong, Alice; Yellowley, Clare

    2015-03-01

    Osteoarthritis is a major cause of chronic lameness in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in captivity worldwide. Radiology and other imaging technologies are of limited use in the early diagnosis of this condition in elephants. Collagen II is a major component of articular cartilage. The degradation and formation of collagen II can be monitored by the measurement of specific biomarkers in biologic fluids such as serum. It is possible that these biomarkers could also prove useful in identifying disease in elephants. In this study two commercially available immunoassays which measure a marker of collagen II degradation (C2C) and a marker of collagen II formation (CPII) were evaluated in Asian elephants. The ability of the assays to detect and measure C2C and CPII in the serum of Asian elephants was confirmed. Median serum concentration of C2C was 148 ng/L in nonlame elephants (n=33) and 91.2 ng/L in lame elephants (n=7). The difference was statistically significant (P=0.0002). Median serum concentration of CPII was 519.3 ng/L in nonlame elephants and 318.7 ng/L in lame elephants. The difference was also statistically significant (P=0.039). Whereas CPII concentrations in lame elephants mirrored findings from human and animal osteoarthritis studies, C2C concentrations did not. Further studies which evaluate these and other similar biomarkers are necessary to elucidate their usefulness in the diagnosis of osteoarthritis in proboscidae.

  10. A visual system for scoring body condition of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wijeyamohan, Shanmugasundaram; Treiber, Kibby; Schmitt, Dennis; Santiapillai, Charles

    2015-01-01

    A body condition score (BCS) may provide information on the health or production potential of an animal; it may also reflect the suitability of the environment to maintain an animal population. Thus assessing the BCS of Asian elephants is important for their management. There is a need for a robust BCS applicable to both wild and captive elephants of all age categories based on the minimum and maximum possible subcutaneous body fat and muscle deposits. The visually based system for scoring the body condition of elephants presented here satisfies these criteria and is quick, inexpensive, non-invasive and user-friendly in the field. The BCS scale correlates (P < 0.05) with morphometric indices such as weight, girth, and skin fold measures.

  11. Comparative endocrinology of cycling and non-cycling Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Janine L; Walker, Susan L; Moeller, Tanya

    2004-05-01

    Up to 14% of Asian and 29% of African elephants in captivity are not cycling normally or exhibit irregular cycles based on progestin profiles. To determine if ovarian acyclicity is related to other disruptions in endocrine activity, serum pituitary, thyroid, adrenal, and ovarian hormones in weekly samples collected for 6-25 months were compared between normal cycling (n=22 each species) and non-cycling (n=6 Asian; n=30 African) elephants. A subset of cycling females (n=4 Asian, 7 African) also were blood sampled daily during the follicular phase to characterize the peri-ovulatory period. In normal cycling females, two leutinizing hormone (LH) surges were observed 3 weeks apart during a normal follicular phase, with the second inducing ovulation (ovLH). Serum FSH concentrations were highest at the beginning of the non-luteal phase, declining to nadir concentrations within 4 days of the ovLH surge. FSH remained low until after the ovLH surge and then increased during the luteal phase. A species difference was noted in prolactin secretion. In the African elephant, prolactin was increased during the follicular phase, but in Asian elephants concentrations remained stable throughout the cycle. Patterns of thyroid hormones (thyroid-stimulating hormone, TSH; free and total thyroxine, T4; free and total triiodothyronine, T3) and cortisol secretion were not affected by estrous cycle stage or season in cycling elephants. In non-cycling elephants, there were no fluctuating patterns of LH, FSH, or prolactin secretion. Overall mean concentrations of all hormones were similar to those in cycling animals, with the exception of FSH, prolactin, and estradiol. Mean serum FSH concentrations were lower due to females not exhibiting normal cyclic increases, whereas serum estradiol was higher overall in most acyclic females. Prolactin concentrations were significantly increased in 11 of 30 non-cycling females, all of which were African elephants. In sum, while there were no consistent

  12. Dung as a potential medium for inter-sexual chemical signaling in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghosal, Ratna; Seshagiri, P B; Sukumar, R

    2012-09-01

    Chemical signaling is a prominent mode of male-female communication among elephants, especially during their sexually active periods. Studies on the Asian elephant in zoos have shown the significance of a urinary pheromone (Z7-12:Ac) in conveying the reproductive status of a female toward the opposite sex. We investigated the additional possibility of an inter-sexual chemical signal being conveyed through dung. Sixteen semi-captive adult male elephants were presented with dung samples of three female elephants in different reproductive phases. Each male was tested in 3 separate trials, within an interval of 1-3 days. The trials followed a double-blind pattern as the male and female elephants used in the trials were strangers, and the observer was not aware of the reproductive status of females during the period of bioassays. Males responded preferentially (Pelephants were able to distinguish the reproductive phase of the female by possibly detecting a pre-ovulatory pheromone released in dung.

  13. Potential factors affecting semen quality in the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus

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    Pongsopavijitr Pornsawan

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background One of the major obstacles in using artificial insemination to manage genetics of elephant population in captivity is the large variations in semen quality among ejaculates within the same and among individuals. The objectives of this study were to determine the influences of (1 age (2 seasonality (3 and circulating testosterone (SrTest, triiodothyronine (SrT3 and tetraiodothyronine (SrT4, as well as seminal (4 testosterone (SpTest, zinc (SpZn and protein (SpTP on semen quality in the Asian elephant Methods Analyses, including motility, viability and morphology were performed in semen samples collected twice monthly from 13 elephant bulls (age range, 10-to 72-years by manual stimulation between July 2004 and June 2005. Serum samples obtained monthly were assessed for SrTest, SrT3, SrT4, and seminal plasma samples were evaluated for, SpTest, SpZn and SpTP. Results The highest semen quality was observed at age 23 to 43 years. Percentages of progressive motility and viable sperm were lowest at age 51 to 70 years (P Conclusion This study indicates that age and seasonality had influence on semen characteristics in the Asian elephant. The knowledge obtained in this study will improve our understanding of the reproductive biology of this species.

  14. Characterisation of the sympathetic nervous system of Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants based on urinary catecholamine analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dehnhard, M

    2007-05-01

    Assessing the welfare status of captive animals using non-invasive measurements of hormones is of growing interest because this can serve as an effective tool to facilitate the optimization of environmental and husbandry conditions. Both the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) and the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) exhibit extremely low breeding success in captivity, and because elevated levels of stress may negatively influence reproductive functions, this study sought to establish a method for assessing sympathoadrenal activity in captive female elephants. We found a circadian variation in urinary noradrenaline (norepinephrine, NE), adrenaline (epinephrine, Epi) and dopamine (DA) under short day length. Peak activity of noradrenaline and dopamine was noted at 3 a.m. Adrenaline showed a biphasic pattern with a minor peak recorded at 3 a.m. and a major peak 9 a.m. Under long-day photoperiodic conditions, simultaneous peaks of noradrenaline and adrenaline were again noted at 3 a.m. whereas dopamine does not appear to have a distinct circadian pattern under long-day length. A transfer of two elephant cows resulted in a marked increase in urinary adrenaline and noradrenaline levels, confirming that the transfer represented a stressful event. During the peripartal period, noradrenaline concentrations increased and maximum concentrations were obtained at delivery. Daily measurements of urinary dopamine throughout the follicular phase revealed an increase in dopamine secretion close to ovulation. This increase might indicate a role of dopamine in the ovulatory mechanisms. These results suggest that changes in urinary catecholamine excretion reflect fluctuations in sympathoadrenal activity and may be a useful indicator of stress.

  15. Housing and Social Environments of African (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus Elephants in North American Zoos.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheryl L Meehan

    Full Text Available We evaluated 255 African (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus elephants living in 68 North American zoos over one year to quantify housing and social variables. All parameters were quantified for the both the day and the night and comparisons were made across these time periods as well as by species and sex. To assess housing, we evaluated not only total exhibit size, but also individual animals' experiences based on the time they spent in the unique environments into which the exhibits were subdivided. Variables developed to assess housing included measurements of area as a function of time (Total Space Experience, environment type (Indoor, Outdoor, In/Out Choice and time spent on hard and soft flooring. Over the year, Total Space Experience values ranged from 1,273 square feet to 169,692 square feet, with Day values significantly greater than Night values (p<0.001. Elephants spent an average of 55.1% of their time outdoors, 28.9% indoors, and 16% in areas with a choice between being in or out. Time spent on hard flooring substrate ranged from 0% to 66.7%, with Night values significantly greater than Day (p<0.001. Social factors included number of animals functionally housed together (Social Experience and social group characteristics such as time spent with juveniles and in mixed-sex groups. Overall Social Experience scores ranged from 1 to 11.2 and were significantly greater during the Day than at Night (p<0.001. There were few significant social or housing differences between African (N = 138 and Asian (N = 117 species or between males (N = 54 and females (N = 201. The most notable exception was Total Space Experience, with African and male elephants having larger Total Space Experience than Asian and female elephants, respectively (P-value<0.05. The housing and social variables evaluated herein have been used in a series of subsequent epidemiological analyses relating to various elephant welfare outcomes.

  16. The effect of some ecological factors on the intestinal parasite loads of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) in southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidya, T N C; Sukumar, R

    2002-09-01

    Some ecological factors that might potentially influence intestinal parasite loads in the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus Linn.) were investigated in the Nilgiris, southern India. Fresh dung samples from identified animals were analysed, and the number of eggs/g of dung used as an index of parasite load. Comparisons across seasons and habitats revealed that parasite loads were significantly higher during the dry season than the wet season, but were not different between the dry-deciduous and dry-thorn forests in either season. After accounting for the effect of age on body condition, there was no correlation between body condition, assessed visually using morphological criteria, and parasite load in either season. Individuals of different elephant herds were not characterized by distinct parasite communities in either season. When intra-individual variation was examined, samples collected from the same individual within a day differed significantly in egg densities, while the temporal variation over several weeks or months (within a season) was much less. Egg densities within dung piles were uniform, enabling a simpler collection method henceforth.

  17. Effect of concentrates restriction on feed consumption, diet digestibility, and nitrogen utilization in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, A; Smith, M L; Saini, M; Katole, Shrikant; Kullu, S S; Gupta, B K; Sharma, A K; Swarup, D

    2015-01-01

    In order to study the effect of concentrates restriction on feed consumption, diet digestibility, and utilization of nitrogen in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), two feeding trials were conducted on three juveniles, four sub-adults, and three adults. During trial I, the conventional zoo diets of juveniles, sub-adults, and adult contained 22, 17, and 16% of concentrates on dry matter (DM) basis, respectively. During trial II, the amount of concentrate was reduced by 50%. A digestion trial of five days collection period was conducted during each period. The animals ate more roughages when concentrates were restricted. Intake of DM (g/kg BW(0.75) /day) was highest in sub-adults, followed by juveniles and adults. Apparent digestibility of crude protein (CP), neutral detergent soluble (NDS), and supply of digestible energy (DE) was highest in juveniles, followed by sub-adults and adults. Based upon the estimated metabolic fecal nitrogen (MFN) and calculated endogenous urinary nitrogen (EUN) and dermal losses, minimum dietary CP required to meet maintenance requirement was estimated to be 6.12, 6.05, and 5.97% in juveniles, sub-adults, and adults, respectively. Restriction of concentrates resulted in decreased (P elephants should be fed in a restricted way so as to reduce the intake of excessive calories and the potential risk of obesity.

  18. The effect of some ecological factors on the intestinal parasite loads of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) in southern India

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    T N C Vidya; R Sukumar

    2002-09-01

    Some ecological factors that might potentially influence intestinal parasite loads in the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus Linn.) were investigated in the Nilgiris, southern India. Fresh dung samples from identified animals were analysed, and the number of eggs/g of dung used as an index of parasite load. Comparisons across seasons and habitats revealed that parasite loads were significantly higher during the dry season than the wet season, but were not different between the dry-deciduous and dry-thorn forests in either season. After accounting for the effect of age on body condition, there was no correlation between body condition, assessed visually using morphological criteria, and parasite load in either season. Individuals of different elephant herds were not characterized by distinct parasite communities in either season. When intra-individual variation was examined, samples collected from the same individual within a day differed significantly in egg densities, while the temporal variation over several weeks or months (within a season) was much less. Egg densities within dung piles were uniform, enabling a simpler collection method henceforth.

  19. Housing and Demographic Risk Factors Impacting Foot and Musculoskeletal Health in African Elephants [Loxodonta africana] and Asian Elephants [Elephas maximus] in North American Zoos.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele A Miller

    Full Text Available For more than three decades, foot and musculoskeletal conditions have been documented among both Asian [Elephas maximus] and African [Loxodonta africana] elephants in zoos. Although environmental factors have been hypothesized to play a contributing role in the development of foot and musculoskeletal pathology, there is a paucity of evidence-based research assessing risk. We investigated the associations between foot and musculoskeletal health conditions with demographic characteristics, space, flooring, exercise, enrichment, and body condition for elephants housed in North American zoos during 2012. Clinical examinations and medical records were used to assess health indicators and provide scores to quantitate conditions. Using multivariable regression models, associations were found between foot health and age [P value = 0.076; Odds Ratio = 1.018], time spent on hard substrates [P value = 0.022; Odds Ratio = 1.014], space experienced during the night [P value = 0.041; Odds Ratio = 1.008], and percent of time spent in indoor/outdoor exhibits during the day [P value < 0.001; Odds Ratio = 1.003]. Similarly, the main risk factors for musculoskeletal disorders included time on hard substrate [P value = 0.002; Odds Ratio = 1.050] and space experienced in indoor/outdoor exhibits [P value = 0.039; Odds Ratio = 1.037]. These results suggest that facility and management changes that decrease time spent on hard substrates will improve elephant welfare through better foot and musculoskeletal health.

  20. Housing and Demographic Risk Factors Impacting Foot and Musculoskeletal Health in African Elephants [Loxodonta africana] and Asian Elephants [Elephas maximus] in North American Zoos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Michele A; Hogan, Jennifer N; Meehan, Cheryl L

    2016-01-01

    For more than three decades, foot and musculoskeletal conditions have been documented among both Asian [Elephas maximus] and African [Loxodonta africana] elephants in zoos. Although environmental factors have been hypothesized to play a contributing role in the development of foot and musculoskeletal pathology, there is a paucity of evidence-based research assessing risk. We investigated the associations between foot and musculoskeletal health conditions with demographic characteristics, space, flooring, exercise, enrichment, and body condition for elephants housed in North American zoos during 2012. Clinical examinations and medical records were used to assess health indicators and provide scores to quantitate conditions. Using multivariable regression models, associations were found between foot health and age [P value = 0.076; Odds Ratio = 1.018], time spent on hard substrates [P value = 0.022; Odds Ratio = 1.014], space experienced during the night [P value = 0.041; Odds Ratio = 1.008], and percent of time spent in indoor/outdoor exhibits during the day [P value < 0.001; Odds Ratio = 1.003]. Similarly, the main risk factors for musculoskeletal disorders included time on hard substrate [P value = 0.002; Odds Ratio = 1.050] and space experienced in indoor/outdoor exhibits [P value = 0.039; Odds Ratio = 1.037]. These results suggest that facility and management changes that decrease time spent on hard substrates will improve elephant welfare through better foot and musculoskeletal health.

  1. Effect of calcium and cholecalciferol supplementation on several parameters of calcium status in plasma and urine of captive Asian (Elephas maximus) and African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Sonsbeek, Gerda R; van der Kolk, Johannes H; van Leeuwen, Johannes P T M; Everts, Hendrik; Marais, Johan; Schaftenaar, Willem

    2013-09-01

    The aim of the current study was to assess the effect of oral calcium and cholecalciferol supplementation on several parameters of calcium status in plasma and urine of captive Asian (Elephas maximus; n=10) and African elephants (Loxodonta africana; n=6) and to detect potential species differences. Calcium and cholecalciferol supplementation were investigated in a feeding trial using a crossover design consisting of five periods of 28 days each in summer. From days 28-56 (period 2), elephants were fed the Ca-supplemented diet and from days 84-112, elephants were fed the cholecalciferol-supplemented diet (period 4). The control diet was fed during the other periods and was based on their regular ration, and the study was repeated similarly during winter. Periods 1, 3, and 5 were regarded as washout periods. This study revealed species-specific differences with reference to calcium and cholecalciferol supplementation. Asian elephants showed a significant increase in mean plasma total calcium concentration following calcium supplementation during summer, suggesting summer-associated subclinical hypocalcemia in Western Europe. During winter, no effect was seen after oral calcium supplementation, but a significant increase was seen both in mean plasma, total, and ionized calcium concentrations after cholecalciferol supplementation in Asian elephants. In contrast, evidence of subclinical hypocalcemia could be demonstrated neither in summer nor in winter in African elephants, although 28 days of cholecalciferol supplementation during winter reversed the decrease in plasma 1,25(OH)2-cholecalciferol and was followed by a significant increase in mean plasma total calcium concentration. Preliminary findings indicate that the advisable permanent daily intake for calcium in Asian elephants and cholecalciferol in both elephant species at least during winter might be higher than current guidelines. It is strongly recommended to monitor blood calcium concentrations and, if

  2. Assessment of Body Condition in African (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus Elephants in North American Zoos and Management Practices Associated with High Body Condition Scores.

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    Kari A Morfeld

    Full Text Available Obesity has a negative effect on health and welfare of many species, and has been speculated to be a problem for zoo elephants. To address this concern, we assessed the body condition of 240 elephants housed in North American zoos based on a set of standardized photographs using a 5-point Body Condition Score index (1 = thinnest; 5 = fattest. A multi-variable regression analysis was then used to determine how demographic, management, housing, and social factors were associated with an elevated body condition score in 132 African (Loxodonta africana and 108 Asian (Elephas maximus elephants. The highest BCS of 5, suggestive of obesity, was observed in 34% of zoo elephants. In both species, the majority of elephants had elevated BCS, with 74% in the BCS 4 (40% and 5 (34% categories. Only 22% of elephants had BCS 3, and less than 5% of the population was assigned the lowest BCS categories (BCS 1 and 2. The strongest multi-variable model demonstrated that staff-directed walking exercise of 14 hours or more per week and highly unpredictable feeding schedules were associated with decreased risk of BCS 4 or 5, while increased diversity in feeding methods and being female was associated with increased risk of BCS 4 or 5. Our data suggest that high body condition is prevalent among North American zoo elephants, and management strategies that help prevent and mitigate obesity may lead to improvements in welfare of zoo elephants.

  3. Assessment of Body Condition in African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) Elephants in North American Zoos and Management Practices Associated with High Body Condition Scores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morfeld, Kari A; Meehan, Cheryl L; Hogan, Jennifer N; Brown, Janine L

    2016-01-01

    Obesity has a negative effect on health and welfare of many species, and has been speculated to be a problem for zoo elephants. To address this concern, we assessed the body condition of 240 elephants housed in North American zoos based on a set of standardized photographs using a 5-point Body Condition Score index (1 = thinnest; 5 = fattest). A multi-variable regression analysis was then used to determine how demographic, management, housing, and social factors were associated with an elevated body condition score in 132 African (Loxodonta africana) and 108 Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants. The highest BCS of 5, suggestive of obesity, was observed in 34% of zoo elephants. In both species, the majority of elephants had elevated BCS, with 74% in the BCS 4 (40%) and 5 (34%) categories. Only 22% of elephants had BCS 3, and less than 5% of the population was assigned the lowest BCS categories (BCS 1 and 2). The strongest multi-variable model demonstrated that staff-directed walking exercise of 14 hours or more per week and highly unpredictable feeding schedules were associated with decreased risk of BCS 4 or 5, while increased diversity in feeding methods and being female was associated with increased risk of BCS 4 or 5. Our data suggest that high body condition is prevalent among North American zoo elephants, and management strategies that help prevent and mitigate obesity may lead to improvements in welfare of zoo elephants.

  4. Secretory pattern of inhibin during estrous cycle and pregnancy in African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Yuki; Yuto, Natsuki; Yamamoto, Tatsuya; Kaewmanee, Saroch; Shiina, Osamu; Mouri, Yasushi; Narushima, Etsuo; Katayanagi, Masayuki; Sugimura, Keisuke; Nagaoka, Kentaro; Watanabe, Gen; Taya, Kazuyoshi

    2012-01-01

    The ovary of female elephants has multiple corpora lutea (CL) during the estrous cycle and gestation. The previous reports clearly demonstrated that inhibin was secreted from lutein cells as well as granulosa cells of antral follicles in cyclic Asian elephants. The aim of this study is to investigate the inhibin secretion during the pregnancy in African and Asian elephants. Two African elephants and two Asian elephants were subjected to this study. Circulating levels of immunoreactive (ir-) inhibin and progesterone were measured by radioimmunoassay. Four pregnant periods of an African elephant and three pregnant periods of an Asian elephant were analyzed in this study. Circulating levels of ir-inhibin started to increase at 1 or 2 week before the ovulation and reached the peak level 3 or 4 weeks earlier than progesterone during the estrous cycle in both African and Asian elephants. After last luteal phase, the serum levels of ir-inhibin remained low throughout pregnancy in both an African and an Asian elephant. The mean levels of ir-inhibin during the pregnancy were lower than the luteal phase in the estrous cycle despite high progesterone levels were maintained throughout the pregnancy. These results strongly suggest that CL secrete a large amount of progesterone but not inhibin during the pregnancy in elephants.

  5. A safer method for studying hormone metabolism in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus): accelerator mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yon, Lisa; Faulkner, Brian; Kanchanapangka, Sumolya; Chaiyabutr, Narongsak; Meepan, Sompast; Lasley, Bill

    2010-01-01

    Noninvasive hormone assays provide a way to determine an animal's health or reproductive status without the need for physical or chemical restraint, both of which create unnecessary stress for the animal, and can potentially alter the hormones being measured. Because hormone metabolism is highly species-specific, each assay must be validated for use in the species of interest. Validation of noninvasive steroid hormone assays has traditionally required the administration of relatively high doses of radiolabelled compounds (100 µCi or more of (14)C labeled hormone) to permit subsequent detection of the excreted metabolites in the urine and feces. Accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) is sensitive to extremely low levels of rare isotopes such as (14)C, and provides a way to validate hormone assays using much lower levels of radioactivity than those traditionally employed. A captive Asian bull elephant was given 1 µCi of (14)C-testosterone intravenously, and an opportunistic urine sample was collected 2 hr after the injection. The sample was separated by HPLC and the (14)C in the fractions was detected by AMS to characterize the metabolites present in the urine. A previously established HPLC protocol was used, which permitted the identification of fractions into which testosterone sulfate, testosterone glucuronide, and the parent compound testosterone elute. Results from this study indicate that the majority of testosterone excreted in the urine of the Asian bull elephant is in the form of testosterone sulfate. A small amount of testosterone glucuronide is also excreted, but there is no parent compound present in the urine at all. These results underscore the need for enzymatic hydrolysis to prepare urine samples for hormone assay measurement. Furthermore, they highlight the importance of proper hormone assay validation in order to ensure accurate measurement of the desired hormone. Although this study demonstrated the utility of AMS for safer validation of

  6. The pharmacokinetics of a single oral or rectal dose of concurrently administered isoniazid, rifampin, pyrazinamide, and ethambutol in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    P Brock, A; Isaza, R; Egelund, E F; Hunter, R P; Peloquin, C A

    2014-10-01

    Tuberculosis, caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is a disease of concern in captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Treatment for tuberculosis in elephants utilizes multidrug protocols combining isoniazid, rifampin, pyrazinamide, and/or ethambutol. In this study, a single, coformulated dose of isoniazid 5 mg/kg, rifampin 10 mg/kg, pyrazinamide 30 mg/kg, and ethambutol 30 mg/kg was administered orally to six Asian elephants, and rectally to five elephants using a cross-over design. Blood samples were collected serially over 24 h. Pyrazinamide and ethambutol concentrations were determined using validated gas chromatography assays. Isoniazid and rifampin concentrations were determined using validated high-performance liquid chromatography assays. Rectal isoniazid produced an earlier Tmax compared with oral administration. Oral isoniazid resulted in a comparatively lower Cmax , but higher AUC values compared with rectal isoniazid. Oral rifampin and oral ethambutol were well absorbed while rectal rifampin was not. Oral pyrazinamide produced comparatively higher Cmax and AUC values compared with rectal pyrazinamide. Results of this study indicate that currently recommended therapeutic monitoring sample collection times for rectal isoniazid and oral rifampin do not provide an accurate assessment of exposure for these drugs. This study demonstrates notable individual variability, indicating that dosing of these medications requires individual monitoring and provides additional information to guide the clinician when treating elephants.

  7. Evaluation of Demographics and Social Life Events of Asian (Elephas maximus) and African Elephants (Loxodonta africana) in North American Zoos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prado-Oviedo, Natalia A; Bonaparte-Saller, Mary K; Malloy, Elizabeth J; Meehan, Cheryl L; Mench, Joy A; Carlstead, Kathy; Brown, Janine L

    2016-01-01

    This study quantified social life events hypothesized to affect the welfare of zoo African and Asian elephants, focusing on animals that were part of a large multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional elephant welfare study in North America. Age was calculated based on recorded birth dates and an age-based account of life event data for each elephant was compiled. These event histories included facility transfers, births and deaths of offspring, and births and deaths of non-offspring herd mates. Each event was evaluated as a total number of events per elephant, lifetime rate of event exposure, and age at first event exposure. These were then compared across three categories: species (African vs. Asian); sex (male vs. female); and origin (imported vs. captive-born). Mean age distributions differed (p<0.05) between the categories: African elephants were 6 years younger than Asian elephants, males were 12 years younger than females, and captive-born elephants were 20 years younger than imported elephants. Overall, the number of transfers ranged from 0 to 10, with a 33% higher age-adjusted transfer rate for imported African than imported Asian elephants, and 37% lower rate for imported females than males (p<0.05). Other differences (p<0.05) included a 96% higher rate of offspring births for captive-born females than those imported from range countries, a 159% higher rate of birthing event exposures for captive-born males than for their imported counterparts, and Asian elephant females being 4 years younger than African females when they produced their first calf. In summarizing demographic and social life events of elephants in North American zoos, we found both qualitative and quantitative differences in the early lives of imported versus captive-born elephants that could have long-term welfare implications.

  8. Evaluation of Demographics and Social Life Events of Asian (Elephas maximus and African Elephants (Loxodonta africana in North American Zoos.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalia A Prado-Oviedo

    Full Text Available This study quantified social life events hypothesized to affect the welfare of zoo African and Asian elephants, focusing on animals that were part of a large multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional elephant welfare study in North America. Age was calculated based on recorded birth dates and an age-based account of life event data for each elephant was compiled. These event histories included facility transfers, births and deaths of offspring, and births and deaths of non-offspring herd mates. Each event was evaluated as a total number of events per elephant, lifetime rate of event exposure, and age at first event exposure. These were then compared across three categories: species (African vs. Asian; sex (male vs. female; and origin (imported vs. captive-born. Mean age distributions differed (p<0.05 between the categories: African elephants were 6 years younger than Asian elephants, males were 12 years younger than females, and captive-born elephants were 20 years younger than imported elephants. Overall, the number of transfers ranged from 0 to 10, with a 33% higher age-adjusted transfer rate for imported African than imported Asian elephants, and 37% lower rate for imported females than males (p<0.05. Other differences (p<0.05 included a 96% higher rate of offspring births for captive-born females than those imported from range countries, a 159% higher rate of birthing event exposures for captive-born males than for their imported counterparts, and Asian elephant females being 4 years younger than African females when they produced their first calf. In summarizing demographic and social life events of elephants in North American zoos, we found both qualitative and quantitative differences in the early lives of imported versus captive-born elephants that could have long-term welfare implications.

  9. Molecular Characterization of Pro-Inflammatory Cytokines Interleukin-1β and Interleukin-8 in Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swami, Shelesh Kumar; Vijay, Anushri; Nagarajan, Govindasamy; Kaur, Ramneek; Srivastava, Meera

    2016-01-01

    Interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-8 are pro-inflammatory cytokines produced primarily by monocytes and macrophages in response to a variety of microbial and nonmicrobial agents. As yet, no molecular data have been reported for IL-1β and IL-8 of the Asian elephant. In the present study, we have cloned and sequenced the cDNA encoding IL-1β and IL-8 of the Asian elephant. The open reading frame (ORF) of Asian elephant IL-1β is 789 bp in length, encoded a propeptide of 263 amino acid polypeptide. The predicted protein revealed the presence of IL-1 family signature motif and an ICE cut site. Whereas, IL-8 contained 321 bp of open reading frame. Interestingly, the predicted protein sequence of 106 aa, contains an ELR motif immediately upstream of the CQC residues, common in all vertebrate IL-8 molecules. Identity levels of the nucleic acid and deduced amino acid sequences of Asian elephant IL-1β ranged from 68.48 (Squirrel monkey) to 98.57% (African elephant), and 57.78 (Sheep) to 98.47% (African elephant), respectively, whereas that of IL-8 ranged from 72.9% (Human) to 87.8% (African elephant), and 63.2 (human, gorilla, chimpanzee) to 74.5% (African elephant, buffalo), respectively. The phylogenetic analysis based on deduced amino acid sequenced showed that the Asian elephant IL-1β and IL-8 were most closely related to African elephant. Molecular characterization of these two cytokines, IL-1β and IL-8, in Asian elephant provides fundamental information necessary to progress the study of functional immune responses in this animal and gives the potential to use them to manipulate the immune response as recombinant proteins.

  10. Results of the third reproductive assessment survey of North American Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) female elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dow, T L; Holásková, I; Brown, J L

    2011-01-01

    A written survey assessed reproductive status of female Asian and African elephants in AZA/SSP facilities in 2008, and data were compared to surveys conducted in 2002 and 2005. Results showed that ovarian acyclicity rates across the surveys remained unchanged for Asian (13.3, 10.9 and 11.1%) and African (22.1, 31.2 and 30.5%) elephants, respectively (P > 0.05), but were higher overall for African compared to Asian elephants (P elephants with irregular cycles (14.3 and 15.8%) and irregular + no cycles (25.4 and 46.4%) was similar to 2005 (7.6 and 11.8%; 18.5 and 43.0%), but were increased compared to 2002 (2.6 and 5.2%; 16.0 and 27.3%), respectively (P elephants compared to females at facilities with no male, respectively. Cyclicity rates were higher for Asian (86.8 vs. 65.2%) and African (67.9 vs. 56.7%) elephants managed in free compared to protected contact programs (P 0.05). In summary, incidence of ovarian cycle problems continues to predominantly affect African elephants. Although percentages of acyclicity did not increase between 2005 and 2008, 42.2% Asian and 30.2% African females were no longer being hormonally monitored; thus, reproductive cycle abnormalities could be worse than current data suggest.

  11. Simultaneous Visual Discrimination in Asian Elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nissani, Moti; Hoefler-Nissani, Donna; Lay, U. Tin; Htun, U. Wan

    2005-01-01

    Two experiments explored the behavior of 20 Asian elephants ("Elephas aximus") in simultaneous visual discrimination tasks. In Experiment 1, 7 Burmese logging elephants acquired a white+/black- discrimination, reaching criterion in a mean of 2.6 sessions and 117 discrete trials, whereas 4 elephants acquired a black+/white- discrimination in 5.3…

  12. Hemorrhagic Septicemia in Asian Elephants Elephas maximus in Karnataka state, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B.R. Harish

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available The wild animal’s health is of serious biodiversity concern and influenced by several factors like infectious, nutritional, environmental, behavioral and physiological factors. Among which infectious agents are crippling the wild life in terms of huge mortality and morbidity and terminating the life of several endangered species. The most common occurrence and Hemorrhagic Septicemia (HS or Pasturellosis has long been recognized as a serious disease in elephants. The present study revealed the occurrence of Hemorrhagic Septicemia (HS in three national parks of Karnataka state among elephants. The disease was diagnosed based on the clinical signs, gross lesions, histopathology and microbiological findings.

  13. Nutritional evaluation of fodder, its preference and crop raiding by wild Asian elephant (Elephas maximus in Sonitpur District of Assam, India

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    Bidyut Jyoti Das

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Aim: The present investigation was carried out to evaluate the nutritive value of fodder in natural habitat, cultivated crops and their preference by wild Asian elephant (Elephas maximus in forest and non-forest areas in four seasons using field observation in Sonitpur District of Assam; since, there were frequent incidences of crop raiding by wild elephant leading to loss of property and human-elephant conflict. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted in four seasons. The study included forest areas of Sonai-Rupai Wildlife Sanctuary, part of Nameri National Park and high human-elephant conflicted areas of non-forest near to the sanctuary and parks. The consumed fodders were identified, collected and evaluated. The proximate composition was determined using AOAC (1990. Results: Total 39 different fodder species of 18 families including herbs, climber, grasses, paddy seeds, paddy saplings, plants and its leaves, bark, fruits, and roots were recorded to be utilized by elephants. The first three family of fodder that elephant relished more were Poaceae (46.15%, Musaceae (7.69% and Zingiberaceae (5.13% respectively. The crude protein content of fodder in all seasons, total ash content only in winter and post monsoon seasons and neutral detergent fiber content of fodder between forest and non-forest were significant (p<0.05. Elephants preferred to forage more on nutritionally rich fodder than poor natural fodder. Incidence of crop raiding was more in post monsoon season could be due to availability of nutritionally rich fodder than the poor natural fodder and generally happened in the night. Conclusions: The study revealed that during post monsoon season, there were abundant nutritionally rich sources of cultivated crops than the fodder of natural habitat that might provoke the wild elephants to raid crops. Poaceae shared a major portion of their diet. The findings will definitely help nutritionist, ecologist and policy makers to understand

  14. Social relationships of wild juvenile Asian Elephants Elephas maximus in the Udawalawa National Park, Sri Lanka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Jayantha

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Social relationships of juvenile wild elephants (3-6 years old in the Udawalawa National Park were studied. Focal animal sampling was employed to quantify behaviour of juveniles encountered on 450 different occasions. Nearest neighbour (NN and nearest neighbour distance (NND were considered for proximity analysis and the social relationships of focal animals. Adult females and juveniles were the NN of the study group during 50.8% and 37.6% of the total observed time respectively. The mean NND was 1.62m (SD� plus or minus 2.8, and it was less than 5m 98% of the time while 33% of the time the study group was touching (NND<1m the NN. There was a significant difference between NND categories (p<0.05. Eighty percent of the NN infants stayed at a touching distance and were cared or allo-mothered by the juveniles under discussion. Time allocated for different behaviour patterns by the study group varied with the NN. When the study animals were accompanied by age-mates, they spent 17% of time in social playing and another 3% in non-play social contacts, but only 1% in each behaviour pattern when the adult females were in close proximity. Maximum social contacts were observed between study animals and infants. The findings suggest that juvenile elephants associate more frequently with adult females and near-age mates while they show social relationships in a varying degree with different associates. Play and social contacts of juveniles with conspecifics, especially with peers, provides opportunity to develop skills and social confidence necessary in adulthood.

  15. Assessment of pregnancy status of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) by measurement of progestagen and glucocorticoid and their metabolite concentrations in serum and feces, using enzyme immunoassay (EIA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kajaysri, Jatuporn; Nokkaew, Weerapun

    2014-03-01

    The study was to find patterns of progestagen (progesterone and its metabolite) and glucocorticoid and their metabolite concentrations in serum and feces of pregnant Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). The 5 female Asian domestic elephants were naturally mated until pregnancy. After that, blood and feces samples were collected monthly during pregnancy for progestagen, glucocorticoid and their metabolites analysis by enzyme immunoassay (EIA). The results showed the serum progestagen concentration during gestation was 2.11 ± 0.60 to 18.44 ± 2.28 ng/ml. Overall, serum progestagen concentration rose from the 1st month to reach peak in the 11th month, after which it declined to its lowest level in the 22nd month of pregnancy. Fecal progestagen concentration varied from 1.18 ± 0.54 to 3.35 ± 0.45 µg/g during pregnancy. In general, fecal progestagen concentration increased from the 1st month to its highest level in the 12th month. After this, it declined reaching its lowest point in the 22nd month of pregnancy. Glucocorticoid hormones and their metabolite concentrations both in serum and feces fluctuated from low to medium throughout almost the entire pregnancy period and then rapidly increased around the last week before calving. Our study suggests that this profile of progestagen and glucocorticoid hormones and their metabolite concentration levels in serum and feces can be used to assess the pregnancy status of Asian elephants. If serum and fecal progestagen concentrations were found in very low levels and glucocorticoid and their metabolite concentrations were found in very high levels, it was indicated that the cow elephant would calve within 7 days.

  16. The secretory pattern and source of immunoreactive prolactin in pregnant African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Yuki; Yamamoto, Tatsuya; Yuto, Natsuki; Hildebrandt, Thomas B; Lueders, Imke; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Shiina, Osamu; Mouri, Yasushi; Sugimura, Keisuke; Sakamoto, Sayuri; Kaewmanee, Saroch; Nagaoka, Kentaro; Watanabe, Gen; Taya, Kazuyoshi

    2012-01-01

    The objective of the present study was to define the secretion of prolactin (PRL) in pregnant African and Asian elephants. Levels of immunoreactive (ir-) PRL in serum and placental homogenates were measured by a heterologous radioimmunoassay (RIA) based on an ovine and human RIA system, and the localization of ir-PRL in the placenta was detected by immunohistochemistry using anti-human PRL. Circulating ir-PRL clearly showed a biphasic pattern during pregnancy in African and Asian elephants. Serum levels of ir-PRL started to increase from the 4 - 6th month of gestation and reached the first peak level around the 11-14th month. A second peak of circulating ir-PRL levels was observed around the 18-20th month of gestation followed by an abrupt decline after parturition. In contrast, in a case of abortion of an African elephant, the second peak of ir-PRL was not observed, and the levels remained low for about four months until parturition. The weight of the fetus delivered at the 17th month of gestation was 23.5 kg, which was quite small compared with normal fetuses in previous reports. Ir-PRL was detected in placental homogenates, and immunolocalization was observed in trophoblasts in both the African and Asian elephants, indicating that the placenta is the source of ir-PRL during pregnancy in elephants. The present results clearly demonstrated that circulating ir-PRL shows a biphasic pattern during normal pregnancy and that the placenta appears to be an important source of circulating ir-PRL during pregnancy in both African and Asian elephants.

  17. Effect of alternate day collection on semen quality of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) with poor initial fresh semen quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Imrat, P.; Mahasawangkul, Sittidet; Thitaram, Chatchote; Suthanmapinanth, P.; Kornkaewrat, K.; Sombutputorn, P.; Jansittiwate, S.; Thongtip, Nikorn; Pinyopummin, A.; Colenbrander, B.; Holt, W.V.; Stout, Tom

    2014-01-01

    In captivity, male Asian elephants often yield poor quality semen after transrectal manually assisted semen collection; however, the reasons for the disappointing semen quality are not clear. Here we test the hypothesis that accumulation of senescent spermatozoa is a contributory factor, and that se

  18. Seed Dispersal Potential of Asian Elephants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harich, Franziska K.; Treydte, Anna Christina; Ogutu, Joseph Ochieng

    2016-01-01

    of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). We examined the effects of elephant fruit consumption on potential seed dispersal using the example of a tree species with mega-faunal characteristics, Dillenia indica L., in Thailand. We conducted feeding trials with Asian elephants to quantify seed survival and gut...... dispersers might, therefore, have long-term negative consequences for the recruitment and dispersal dynamics of populations of certain tree species....

  19. Tuberculosis surveillance of elephants (Elephas maximus) in Nepal at the captive-wild interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    A comprehensive elephant tuberculosis (TB) survey using culture and four serological screening tests was conducted in Nepal. Private and government-owned male and female captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) were included in the study. The mean reported age was 38 years (range 5-60 years). A tot...

  20. Elemental Analysis of Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus) Teeth Using X-ray Fluorescence and a Comparison to Other Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nganvongpanit, Korakot; Brown, Janine L; Buddhachat, Kittisak; Somgird, Chaleamchat; Thitaram, Chatchote

    2016-03-01

    Elemental composition in bone of the different species has variation depending on genetic and environmental factors especially their food habitat. The aims of this study were to conduct an elemental analysis of Asian elephant teeth, both deciduous (first molar, second molar, and tusk) and permanent (molar and tusk), and compare the elemental composition of permanent teeth among 15 species, mostly mammalian. These teeth were analyzed using X-ray fluorescence at two voltages: 15 and 50 kV. In Asian elephants, deciduous tusk showed a lower Ca/Zn ratio compared to permanent tusk, because of the lack of Zn in permanent molars. Ca/Fe ratio was higher in deciduous than permanent molars. For permanent teeth, elephant molars presented a high Ca/Pb ratio but no Ca/Zn, Ca/Sr, and Zn/Fe ratios because of the lack of Zn and Sr in the samples tested. The key elemental ratios for differentiating elephant deciduous and permanent tusk were Ca/P and Ca/Zn. The considerable variation in elemental ratio data across 15 species was observed. All tooth samples contained Ca and P, which was not surprising; however, Pb also was present in all samples and Cd in a large majority, suggesting exposure to environmental contaminants. From discriminant analysis, the combination of Ca/P+Ca/Zn+Ca/Pb+Ca/Fe+Ca/Sr+Zn/Fe can generate two equations that successfully classified six (dog, pig, goat, tapir, monkey, and elephant) out of 15 species at 100 % specificity. In conclusion, determining the elemental profile of teeth may serve as a tool to identify the tooth "type" of elephants and to potentially classify other species.

  1. Potential of a gonadotropin-releasing hormone vaccine to suppress musth in captive male Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somgird, Chaleamchat; Homkong, Pongpon; Sripiboon, Supaphen; Brown, Janine L; Stout, Tom A E; Colenbrander, Ben; Mahasawangkul, Sittidet; Thitaram, Chatchote

    2016-01-01

    Musth in adult bull elephants is a period of increased androgen concentrations ranging from a few weeks to several months. For captive elephant bull management, musth presents a serious challenge because of the aggressive behavior of musth bulls toward people and other elephants. Commercially available GnRH vaccines have been shown to suppress testicular function by interrupting the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis in many species. The aim of this study was to test the efficacy of a GnRH vaccine in elephant bulls for suppressing the HPG axis and mitigating musth-related aggressive behavior. Five adult Asian elephant bulls (22-55 years old) were immunized with a GnRH vaccine starting with an initial injection 2-4 months before the predicted musth period, and followed by three boosters at approximately 4-week intervals. Blood samples were collected twice weekly for hormone and antibody titer analysis. An increase in GnRH antibody titers was observed in all bulls after the second or third booster, and titers remained elevated for 2-3 months after the final booster. Musth was attenuated and shortened in three bulls and postponed completely in two. We conclude that GnRH vaccination is capable of suppressing symptoms of musth in adult bull elephants. With appropriate timing, GnRH vaccination could be used to control or manage musth and aggressive behavior in captive elephant bulls. However, more work is needed to identify an optimal dose, booster interval, and vaccination schedule for complete suppression of testicular steroidogenesis.

  2. Potential of a gonadotropin-releasing hormone vaccine to suppress musth in captive male Asian elephants (Elephas maximus)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Somgird, Chaleamchat; Homkong, Pongpon; Sripiboon, Supaphen; Brown, Janine L; Stout, Tom A E; Colenbrander, Ben; Mahasawangkul, Sittidet; Thitaram, Chatchote

    2015-01-01

    Musth in adult bull elephants is a period of increased androgen concentrations ranging from a few weeks to several months. For captive elephant bull management, musth presents a serious challenge because of the aggressive behavior of musth bulls toward people and other elephants. Commercially availa

  3. Strangulating intestinal obstructions in four captive elephants (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiedner, Ellen B; Peddie, James; Peddie, Linda Reeve; Abou-Madi, Noha; Kollias, George V; Doyle, Charles; Lindsay, William A; Isaza, Ramiro; Terrell, Scott; Lynch, Tim M; Johnson, Kari; Johnson, Gary; Sammut, Charlie; Daft, Barbara; Uzal, Francisco

    2012-03-01

    Three captive-born (5-day-old, 8-day-old, and 4-yr-old) Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and one captive-born 22-yr-old African elephant (Loxodonta africana) from three private elephant facilities and one zoo in the United States presented with depression, anorexia, and tachycardia as well as gastrointestinal signs of disease including abdominal distention, decreased borborygmi, tenesmus, hematochezia, or diarrhea. All elephants showed some evidence of discomfort including agitation, vocalization, or postural changes. One animal had abnormal rectal findings. Nonmotile bowel loops were seen on transabdominal ultrasound in another case. Duration of signs ranged from 6 to 36 hr. All elephants received analgesics and were given oral or rectal fluids. Other treatments included warm-water enemas or walking. One elephant underwent exploratory celiotomy. Three animals died, and the elephant taken to surgery was euthanized prior to anesthetic recovery. At necropsy, all animals had severe, strangulating intestinal lesions.

  4. Statistical parametric mapping of the regional distribution and ontogenetic scaling of foot pressures during walking in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panagiotopoulou, Olga; Pataky, Todd C; Hill, Zoe; Hutchinson, John R

    2012-05-01

    Foot pressure distributions during locomotion have causal links with the anatomical and structural configurations of the foot tissues and the mechanics of locomotion. Elephant feet have five toes bound in a flexible pad of fibrous tissue (digital cushion). Does this specialized foot design control peak foot pressures in such giant animals? And how does body size, such as during ontogenetic growth, influence foot pressures? We addressed these questions by studying foot pressure distributions in elephant feet and their correlation with body mass and centre of pressure trajectories, using statistical parametric mapping (SPM), a neuro-imaging technology. Our results show a positive correlation between body mass and peak pressures, with the highest pressures dominated by the distal ends of the lateral toes (digits 3, 4 and 5). We also demonstrate that pressure reduction in the elephant digital cushion is a complex interaction of its viscoelastic tissue structure and its centre of pressure trajectories, because there is a tendency to avoid rear 'heel' contact as an elephant grows. Using SPM, we present a complete map of pressure distributions in elephant feet during ontogeny by performing statistical analysis at the pixel level across the entire plantar/palmar surface. We hope that our study will build confidence in the potential clinical and scaling applications of mammalian foot pressures, given our findings in support of a link between regional peak pressures and pathogenesis in elephant feet.

  5. The amino acid sequence of elephant (Elephas maximus) myoglobin and the phylogeny of Proboscidea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dene, H; Goodman, M; Romero-Herrera, A E

    1980-02-13

    The complete amino acid sequence of skeletal myoglobin from the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) is reported. The functional significance of variations seen when this sequence is compared with that of sperm whale myoglobin is explored in the light of the crystallographic model available for the latter molecule. The phylogenetic implications of the elephant myoglobin amino acid sequence are evaluated by using the maximum parsimony technique. A similar analysis is also presented which incorporates all of the proteins sequenced from the elephant. These results are discussed with respect to current views on proboscidean phylogeny.

  6. Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Wild Asian Elephants, Southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zachariah, Arun; Pandiyan, Jeganathan; Madhavilatha, G K; Mundayoor, Sathish; Chandramohan, Bathrachalam; Sajesh, P K; Santhosh, Sam; Mikota, Susan K

    2017-03-01

    We tested 3 ild Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in southern India and confirmed infection in 3 animals with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, an obligate human pathogen, by PCR and genetic sequencing. Our results indicate that tuberculosis may be spilling over from humans (reverse zoonosis) and emerging in wild elephants.

  7. Population pharmacokinetics of isoniazid in the treatment of Mycobacterium tuberculosis among Asian and African elephants (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maslow, J N; Mikota, S K; Zhu, M; Isaza, R; Peddie, L R; Dunker, F; Peddie, J; Riddle, H; Peloquin, C A

    2005-02-01

    We recently described the clinical presentation and treatment of 18 elephants from six herds infected with TB. Treatment protocols and methods varied between herds to include both oral and rectal dosing using multiple drug doses and formulations. In this paper we present information regarding the pharmacokinetics (PK) of isoniazid (INH) in elephants and provide suggestions regarding initial treatment regimens. Forty-one elephants received INH daily by either oral or rectal administration with different formulations. Population PK analysis was performed using Non-linear Mixed Effect Modeling (NONMEM). Results of oral administration indicated that compared with premixed INH solution, the drug exposure was highest with a suspension prepared freshly with INH powder. When INH was concomitantly given as an admixture over food, Tmax was delayed and variability in drug absorption was significantly increased. Compared with oral administration, similar drug exposures were found when INH was dosed rectally. The data generated suggest that a starting dose of 7.5 mg/kg of INH is appropriate for initial TB treatment in elephants when premixed solution is administered directly into the oropharynx or rectal vault and 4 mg/kg are when INH is administered following immediate suspension from powdered form.

  8. Elephant (Elephas maximus Health and Management in Asia: Variations in Veterinary Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Miller

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available There is a need to identify strategic investments in Asian elephant (Elephas maximus health that will yield maximal benefits for overall elephant health and conservation. As an exploratory first step, a survey was administered to veterinarians from Asian elephant range countries at a workshop and via email to help prioritize health-related concerns that will mostly benefit elephants. Responses were received from 45 veterinarians from eight countries that had a range of experience with captive and wild elephants. The occurrence of medical conditions and responses to treatment varied among responses. However, injuries, parasitism, and gastrointestinal disease were reported as the most common syndromes responsible for elephant morbidity, whereas injury and infectious disease not due to parasitism were the most commonly reported sources of elephant mortality. Substandard nutrition, water quality and quantity deficiencies, and inadequate or absent shelter were among the factors listed as barriers to optimal elephant health. While this survey’s results do not support definitive conclusions, they can be used to identify where and how subsequent investigations should be directed. Rigorous assessment of the relative costs and benefits of available options is required to ensure that investments in individual and population health yield the maximal benefits for elephants.

  9. Influence of age and gender on secretion of anti-Müllerian hormone in Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dow, T L; Roudebush, W; Parker, F N; Brown, J L

    2011-03-01

    Anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) secretion was studied in Asian and African elephants varying in age and reproductive status. Overall mean concentrations did not differ (P > 0.05) between species, but were markedly higher in male than female Asian elephants (31.01 ± 4.22 ng/mL and 0.19 ± 0.02 ng/mL, mean ± SEM) and African elephants (40.27 ± 3.18 ng/mL, 0.17 ± 0.04 ng/mL), respectively. Anti-Müllerian hormone secretion was not significantly affected by ovarian cyclicity status (cycling vs noncycling), but was higher (P 0.05) in prepubertal (49.08 ± 6.11 ng/mL) as compared to aged (≥36 y; 22.27 ± 5.82 ng/mL) bulls; concentrations in mature bulls (8-35 y; 37.01 ± 3.17 ng/mL) were similar to prepubertal and older bulls. We concluded that circulating AMH concentrations in elephants were similar between species and not affected by reproductive status; however, concentrations were significantly higher in males than females, and in younger animals. The diagnostic value of AMH to assess fertility status of individual elephants remains to be determined.

  10. Fatal elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus-1 and -4 co-infection in a juvenile Asian elephant in Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seilern-Moy, Katharina; Bertelsen, Mads Frost; Leifsson, Páll S.;

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus-1 (EEHV-1) is one of the major causes of fatality in juvenile Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). On occasions, other EEHV genotypes, i.e. EEHV-3, -4 and -5, have also been reported as the cause of Asian elephant deaths. In this case report we...... describe the investigation into a juvenile Asian elephant fatality in a European zoo. Case Presentation: A fatal case of haemorrhagic disease in a juvenile Asian elephant from a European zoo was diagnosed with co-infection of EEHV-1 and -4. EEHV-4 had a wider organ distribution and a higher viral load...

  11. The three-dimensional locomotor dynamics of African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants reveal a smooth gait transition at moderate speed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Lei; Hutchinson, John R

    2008-02-06

    We examined whether elephants shift to using bouncing (i.e. running) mechanics at any speed. To do this, we measured the three-dimensional centre of mass (CM) motions and torso rotations of African and Asian elephants using a novel multisensor method. Hundreds of continuous stride cycles were recorded in the field. African and Asian elephants moved very similarly. Near the mechanically and metabolically optimal speed (a Froude number (Fr) of 0.09), an inverted pendulum mechanism predominated. With increasing speed, the locomotor dynamics quickly but continuously became less like vaulting and more like bouncing. Our mechanical energy analysis of the CM suggests that at a surprisingly slow speed (approx. 2.2 m s(-1), Fr 0.25), the hindlimbs exhibited bouncing, not vaulting, mechanics during weight support. We infer that a gait transition happens at this relatively slow speed: elephants begin using their compliant hindlimbs like pogo sticks to some extent to drive the body, bouncing over their relatively stiff, vaulting forelimbs. Hence, they are not as rigid limbed as typically characterized for graviportal animals, and use regular walking as well as at least one form of running gait.

  12. Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus), Pig-Tailed Macaque (Macaca nemestrina) and Tiger (Panthera tigris) Populations at Tourism Venues in Thailand and Aspects of Their Welfare.

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    Schmidt-Burbach, Jan; Ronfot, Delphine; Srisangiam, Rossukon

    2015-01-01

    This study focused on determining the size and welfare aspects of Asian elephant, pig-tailed macaque and tiger populations at facilities open to tourists in Thailand. Data were gathered from 118 venues through direct observations and interviews with staff. A score sheet-based welfare assessment was used to calculate scores between 1 and 10, indicating each venue's welfare situation. Factors such as freedom of movement for the animals, access to veterinary care, environmental noise quality, hygiene standards and work intensity were included in the score sheet. 1688 elephants, 371 macaques and 621 tigers were found at the venues. 89 venues exclusively kept elephants, 9 designated 'Monkey schools' offered macaque shows, 4 venues kept primarily tigers, mostly for petting and photo opportunities, and the remaining venues kept a mix of these animals. A strong imbalance in female to male gender ratios was recorded with about 4:1 for adult elephants and 1:4 for adult macaques. Severely inadequate welfare conditions were common, with 75% of macaques and 99% of tigers being kept at venues with scores less than 5. 86% of elephants were kept in inadequate conditions at venues with scores between 3 and 5, but a significant number of venues with scores above 5 were found. 4.6% of elephants were provided commendable conditions, reaching assessment scores of 8 and above. 71% of venues did not offer any sort of education about animals to visitors. This study is the first to assess welfare aspects of captive wild animals at tourism venues across Thailand. It concludes that significant concerns exist about the welfare of wild animals in the tourism sector of Thailand. Urgent attention needs to be given to address these concerns and prevent further suffering. But also to ensure the demand for wild animals doesn't have a negative impact on wild populations.

  13. Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus, Pig-Tailed Macaque (Macaca nemestrina and Tiger (Panthera tigris Populations at Tourism Venues in Thailand and Aspects of Their Welfare.

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    Jan Schmidt-Burbach

    Full Text Available This study focused on determining the size and welfare aspects of Asian elephant, pig-tailed macaque and tiger populations at facilities open to tourists in Thailand. Data were gathered from 118 venues through direct observations and interviews with staff. A score sheet-based welfare assessment was used to calculate scores between 1 and 10, indicating each venue's welfare situation. Factors such as freedom of movement for the animals, access to veterinary care, environmental noise quality, hygiene standards and work intensity were included in the score sheet. 1688 elephants, 371 macaques and 621 tigers were found at the venues. 89 venues exclusively kept elephants, 9 designated 'Monkey schools' offered macaque shows, 4 venues kept primarily tigers, mostly for petting and photo opportunities, and the remaining venues kept a mix of these animals. A strong imbalance in female to male gender ratios was recorded with about 4:1 for adult elephants and 1:4 for adult macaques. Severely inadequate welfare conditions were common, with 75% of macaques and 99% of tigers being kept at venues with scores less than 5. 86% of elephants were kept in inadequate conditions at venues with scores between 3 and 5, but a significant number of venues with scores above 5 were found. 4.6% of elephants were provided commendable conditions, reaching assessment scores of 8 and above. 71% of venues did not offer any sort of education about animals to visitors. This study is the first to assess welfare aspects of captive wild animals at tourism venues across Thailand. It concludes that significant concerns exist about the welfare of wild animals in the tourism sector of Thailand. Urgent attention needs to be given to address these concerns and prevent further suffering. But also to ensure the demand for wild animals doesn't have a negative impact on wild populations.

  14. Effect of feeding different levels of wheat roti on nutrient utilization and blood metabolite profile in semi-captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus).

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    Das, A; Saini, M; Katole, S; Kullu, S S; Swarup, D; Sharma, A K

    2015-04-01

    This experiment was conducted to study the effect of different levels of wheat roti (WR) on nutrient utilization and blood metabolites in Asian elephants fed roughages ad libitum. Nine (3 M, 6 F) Asian elephants (14-52 years of age, 1909-3968 kg BW) were used in an experiment based on replicated Latin square design. Animals in each group (n = 3) were assigned to one of the three dietary treatments in a manner that animals in all the three groups were exposed to all the three treatments in three different periods. Each feeding trial comprised 30 days (25 days of adaptation and 5 days collection period). The amount of WR fed to the elephants was 0.18, 0.12 and 0.06% of BW in groups I, II and III, respectively. They were allowed to forage in the nearby forests for 6 h/day and to bathe for 2 h/day. The animals had ad libitum access to cut Rohini (Mallotus philippensis) trees in their night shelter. Intake and apparent digestibility of dry matter (DM), crude protein (CP), gross energy (GE), Ca, P, Fe, Cu and Zn were measured. Feed consumption was not significantly different among the groups. Significant (p < 0.01) decrease in digestibility of DM and GE and blood glucose concentration was observed with decreased level of WR in the diet. Feeding of WR at 0.06% of BW supplied adequate amount of DE, CP, Ca, P, Fe, Cu and Zn to meet requirement for adult maintenance. Feeding of WR in excess of 0.06% of BW supplied DE in excess of requirement, increased blood glucose concentration which may cause obesity and other associated health problems. It was concluded that the amount of WR should be restricted to 0.06% of BW in the diet of captive Asian elephants.

  15. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Frugivory and seed dispersal by the Asian Elephant Elephas maximus in the tropical forests of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, southern India

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    N. Baskaran

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Seed dispersal plays a potential role in plant species demographic processes. Elephants are important seed-dispersing agents. We studied frugivory and seed dispersal by Asian Elephants in the tropical deciduous and thorn forests of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, southern India. We determined fruit consumption based on the presence of seeds and fruit remnants in elephant dung piles. In total, we identified seeds of eight plant species belonging to seven families in 16% out of 455 dung piles examined between 1991 and 2004. Coinciding with a peak fruiting season in the study area, seeds and other fruit parts appeared in the dung piles significantly more frequently during the dry season than in the wet seasons (southwest and northeast monsoons. Owing to differences in fruit species abundance in different habitats, there was more evidence of fruit consumption in the dry thorn than in the dry and moist deciduous forests. This corresponds with insufficient grass availability in thorn forests during the dry season and an increase in browse consumption as a supplementary diet. Seeds of Tamarindus indica and Acacia intsia were found in elephant dung more frequently than other species. Seed and fruit remnants were found in almost an equal number of dung piles of both bulls and herds.

  16. Liquid semen storage in elephants (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africana): species differences and storage optimization.

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    Kiso, Wendy K; Brown, Janine L; Siewerdt, Frank; Schmitt, Dennis L; Olson, Deborah; Crichton, Elizabeth G; Pukazhenthi, Budhan S

    2011-01-01

    Artificial insemination plays a key role in the genetic management of elephants in zoos. Because freshly extended semen is typically used for artificial insemination in elephants, it has become imperative to optimize conditions for liquid storage and semen transport. The objectives of this study were to examine the interactions between different extenders and storage temperatures on sperm total motility, progressive motility, and acrosomal integrity in Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants. Ejaculates were collected by rectal massage, diluted using a split-sample technique in 5 semen extenders: TL-Hepes (HEP), Modena (MOD), Biladyl (BIL), TEST refrigeration medium (TES), and INRA96 (INR), maintained at 35°C, 22°C, or 4°C. At 0, 4, 6, 12, and 24 hours, aliquots were removed and assessed for sperm total motility, progressive motility, and acrosomal integrity. After 24 hours of storage, African elephant spermatozoa exhibited greater longevity and higher values in sperm quality parameters compared with those of Asian elephants. In both species, semen storage at 35°C resulted in a sharp decline in all sperm quality parameters after 4 hours of storage, whereas storage at 22°C and 4°C facilitated sperm survival. In Asian elephants, MOD and HEP were most detrimental, whereas BIL, TES, and INR maintained motility up to 12 hours when spermatozoa were cooled to 22°Cor4°C. In African elephants, there were no differences among extenders. All media maintained good sperm quality parameters at 22°C or 4°C. However, although MOD, BIL, and INR were most effective at lower temperatures, HEP and TES maintained sperm motility at all storage temperatures. This study demonstrated sperm sensitivity to components of various semen extenders and storage temperatures and offers recommendations for semen extender choices for liquid semen storage for both Asian and African elephants.

  17. Asian elephants acquire inaccessible food by blowing.

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    Mizuno, Kaori; Irie, Naoko; Hiraiwa-Hasegawa, Mariko; Kutsukake, Nobuyuki

    2016-01-01

    Many animals acquire otherwise inaccessible food with the aid of sticks and occasionally water. As an exception, some reports suggest that elephants manipulate breathing through their trunks to acquire inaccessible food. Here, we report on two female Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in Kamine Zoo, Japan, who regularly blew to drive food within their reach. We experimentally investigated this behaviour by placing foods in inaccessible places. The elephants blew the food until it came within accessible range. Once the food was within range, the elephants were increasingly less likely to blow as the distance to the food became shorter. One subject manipulated her blowing duration based on food distance: longer when the food was distant. These results suggest that the elephants used their breath to achieve goals: that is, they used it not only to retrieve the food but also to fine-tune the food position for easy grasping. We also observed individual differences in the elephants' aptitude for this technique, which altered the efficiency of food acquisition. Thus, we added a new example of spontaneous behaviour for achieving a goal in animals. The use of breath to drive food is probably unique to elephants, with their dexterous trunks and familiarity with manipulating the act of blowing, which is commonly employed for self-comfort and acoustic communication.

  18. Insightful problem solving in an Asian elephant.

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    Preston Foerder

    Full Text Available The "aha" moment or the sudden arrival of the solution to a problem is a common human experience. Spontaneous problem solving without evident trial and error behavior in humans and other animals has been referred to as insight. Surprisingly, elephants, thought to be highly intelligent, have failed to exhibit insightful problem solving in previous cognitive studies. We tested whether three Asian elephants (Elephas maximus would use sticks or other objects to obtain food items placed out-of-reach and overhead. Without prior trial and error behavior, a 7-year-old male Asian elephant showed spontaneous problem solving by moving a large plastic cube, on which he then stood, to acquire the food. In further testing he showed behavioral flexibility, using this technique to reach other items and retrieving the cube from various locations to use as a tool to acquire food. In the cube's absence, he generalized this tool utilization technique to other objects and, when given smaller objects, stacked them in an attempt to reach the food. The elephant's overall behavior was consistent with the definition of insightful problem solving. Previous failures to demonstrate this ability in elephants may have resulted not from a lack of cognitive ability but from the presentation of tasks requiring trunk-held sticks as potential tools, thereby interfering with the trunk's use as a sensory organ to locate the targeted food.

  19. Seed dispersal potential of Asian elephants

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    Harich, Franziska K.; Treydte, Anna C.; Ogutu, Joseph O.; Roberts, John E.; Savini, Chution; Bauer, Jan M.; Savini, Tommaso

    2016-11-01

    Elephants, the largest terrestrial mega-herbivores, play an important ecological role in maintaining forest ecosystem diversity. While several plant species strongly rely on African elephants (Loxodonta africana; L. cyclotis) as seed dispersers, little is known about the dispersal potential of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). We examined the effects of elephant fruit consumption on potential seed dispersal using the example of a tree species with mega-faunal characteristics, Dillenia indica L., in Thailand. We conducted feeding trials with Asian elephants to quantify seed survival and gut passage times (GPT). In total, 1200 ingested and non-ingested control seeds were planted in soil and in elephant dung to quantify differences in germination rates in terms of GPT and dung treatment. We used survival analysis as a novel approach to account for the right-censored nature of the data obtained from germination experiments. The average seed survival rate was 79% and the mean GPT was 35 h. The minimum and maximum GPT were 20 h and 72 h, respectively. Ingested seeds were significantly more likely to germinate and to do so earlier than non-ingested control seeds (P = 0.0002). Seeds with the longest GPT displayed the highest germination success over time. Unexpectedly, seeds planted with dung had longer germination times than those planted without. We conclude that D. indica does not solely depend on but benefits from dispersal by elephants. The declining numbers of these mega-faunal seed dispersers might, therefore, have long-term negative consequences for the recruitment and dispersal dynamics of populations of certain tree species.

  20. A comparative haematological analysis of Asian Elephants Elephas maximus Linnaeus, 1758 (Mammalia: Proboscidea: Elephantidae managed under different captive conditions in Sri Lanka

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    R.K.D. Mel

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Haematological parameters were assessed from elephants of three institutions in Sri Lanka with different captive conditions, in order to evaluate if different captive conditions influence the physiology of the animals. The institutions were: The National Zoological Gardens (NZG, where elephants live a comparatively sedentary lifestyle, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage (PEO, where elephants are allowed to walk and engage in intra-specific behaviours, and Millennium Elephant Foundation (MEF, where the elephants are used for tourist rides. Four adult females were examined from the NZG, while only two males and two females could be examined from PEO and MEF respectively. All animals were sampled on four consecutive days. Blood glucose levels, total white blood cells (WBC, red blood cells (RBC, packed cell volume (PCV, mean corpuscular volume (MCV and differential white blood cell counts were carried out. Certain blood parameters of the elephants from NZG differed significantly from the parameters of the elephants from PEO and MEF. These were, the total WBC counts (Kruskal-Wallis, H=21.92, 2d.f., P=0.000, the lymphocyte count (Kruskal-Wallis, H=16.40, 2d.f., P=0.00 and the Neutrophil: Lymphocyte ratios (Kruskal-Wallis , H=14.58, 2d.f., P less than 0.05. PCV , blood glucose levels and monocyte counts were also shown to be significantly different among the three groups (Kruskal-Wallis P less than 0.000. We suggest that differences in the stress levels associated with the different management methods might influence these haematological values.

  1. Mortality records (1979–2011 shed light on threats to Asian Elephants Elephas maximus Linnaeus, 1758 (Mammalia: Proboscidea: Elephantidae in Nilgiris, southern India

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    Priya Davidar

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available We compiled records of 291 elephant deaths over a 33-year period (1979–2011 from the Mudumalai Tiger Reserve and the reserved forests of Nilgiri North and South divisions of southern India from the databases of the Tamil Nadu Forest Department, the Wildlife Protection Society of India and the Nilgiri Wildlife and Environment Association.  We tested the null hypothesis that the causes of elephant deaths would not differ with time, by gender and with level of protection.  We classified records by gender and age: adults (≥15 years, sub adults (5–15 years, juveniles (>1–<5 and calves (≤ 1. We organised records over 3-decade periods. The database consisted of 209 adults (≥15 years, 27 sub adults (5–15 years, 33 juveniles (>1–<5 and 22 calves (≤ 1. MTR had the maximum records (148 followed by NND (138 and NSD (4.  The median age of death was 20 years for adult males and 30 years for adult females.  Mean survival time for adult males was 22.45 years, and 31.84 for females.  Poaching was responsible for the majority of deaths (40%, particularly of male elephants (82%, and unknown causes (31% for the majority of female deaths (66%.  Human-caused deaths, which included poaching and some accidents, averaged 72% between 1979 and 2000 and decreased to 22% during 2001–2011. Deaths due to unknown causes and diseases increased from 28% in 1979-1989 to 69% in 2001–2011.  Relative to estimated population size, deaths attributed to poaching was higher in NND (47% than in MTR (34%.  The causes of death differed by region. In conclusion, the elephant population in the Nilgiris is at risk and needs stringent protection; the mortality database should be systematised; forensic capabilities upgraded, and detection of carcasses improved.  

  2. Corridor use by Asian elephants.

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    Pan, Wenjing; Lin, Liu; Luo, Aidong; Zhang, Li

    2009-06-01

    There are 18 km of Kunming-Bangkok Highway passing through the Mengyang Nature Reserve of Xishuangbanna National Nature Reserve in Yunnan Province, China. From September 2005 to September 2006 the impact of this highway on movement of wild Asian elephants between the eastern and western part of the nature reserve was studied using track transecting, rural surveys and direct monitoring. Our results showed that the number of crossroad corridors used by Asian elephants diminished from 28 to 23 following the construction of the highway. In some areas, the elephant activity diminished or even disappeared, which indicated a change in their home ranges. The utilization rate of artificial corridors was 44%. We also found that elephants preferred artificial corridors that were placed along their original corridors. During the research, wild elephants revealed their adaptation to the highway. They were found walking across the highway road surface many times and for different reasons. We suggest that the highway management bureau should revise their management strategies to mitigate the potential risks caused by elephants on the road for the safety of the public and to protect this endangered species from harm. It is also very important to protect and maintain current Asian elephants corridors in this region.

  3. A longitudinal study of LH, gonadal and adrenal steroids in four intact Asian bull elephants (Elephas maximus) and one castrate African bull (Loxodonta africana) during musth and non-musth periods.

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    Yon, Lisa; Kanchanapangka, Sumolya; Chaiyabutr, Narongsak; Meepan, Sompast; Stanczyk, Frank Z; Dahl, Nancy; Lasley, Bill

    2007-05-01

    During their annual musth cycle, adult African and Asian bull elephants have increased gonadal androgens (testosterone [T], dihydrotestosterone [DHT], androstenedione [A4]). Because musth is a physiologically and psychologically stressful time, this study was conducted to investigate whether the adrenal glands (stimulated by stress) increase production of both glucocorticoids and androgens during musth. Weekly serum samples were taken for 11-15 months from four intact adult Asian bull elephants, and from a castrate African bull elephant who exhibits musth. Testosterone, androstenediol (A5), A4, luteinizing hormone (LH), cortisol, and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) were measured in each sample. In three of the four intact bulls, all hormones measured increased during musth. Adrenal androgens were strongly correlated with LH and testicular androgens, though not to cortisol. None of the hormones measured in the castrate bull increased during his musth cycles. While the significance of adrenal activity in the elephant during musth has yet to be determined, this study provides evidence that the adrenal gland actively produces both glucocorticoids and androgens during musth in the Asian elephant.

  4. Self-recognition in the Asian elephant and future directions for cognitive research with elephants in zoological settings.

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    Plotnik, Joshua M; de Waal, Frans B M; Moore, Donald; Reiss, Diana

    2010-01-01

    The field of animal cognition has grown steadily for nearly four decades, but the primary focus has centered on easily kept lab animals of varying cognitive capacity, including rodents, birds and primates. Elephants (animals not easily kept in a laboratory) are generally thought of as highly social, cooperative, intelligent animals, yet few studies-with the exception of long-term behavioral field studies-have been conducted to directly support this assumption. In fact, there has been remarkably little cognitive research conducted on Asian (Elephas maximus) or African (Loxodonta africana or L. cyclotis) elephants. Here, we discuss the opportunity and rationale for conducting such research on elephants in zoological facilities, and review some of the recent developments in the field of elephant cognition, including our recent study on mirror self-recognition in E. maximus.

  5. Distribution and load of elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses in tissues from associated fatalities of Asian elephants.

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    Seilern-Moy, Katharina; Darpel, Karin; Steinbach, Falko; Dastjerdi, Akbar

    2016-07-15

    Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesviruses (EEHVs) are the cause of a highly fatal haemorrhagic disease in elephants primarily affecting young Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in both captivity and in the wild. The viruses have emerged as a significant threat to Asian elephant conservation, critically affecting overall sustainability of their population. So far insight into the pathogenesis of EEHV infections has been restricted to examination of EEHV-infected tissues. However, little is known about distribution and burden of the viruses within the organs of fatal cases, crucial elements in the understanding of the virus pathogenesis. This study was therefore undertaken to assess the extent of organ and cell involvement in fatal cases of EEHV-1A, 1B and 5 using a quantitative real-time PCR. EEHV-1 and 5 DNA were detectable in all the tissues examined, albeit with substantial differences in the viral DNA load. The highest EEHV-1A DNA load was observed in the liver, followed by the heart, thymus and tongue. EEHV-1B and 5 showed the highest DNA load in the heart, followed by tongue and liver. This study provides new insights into EEHV pathogenicity and has implications in choice of sample type for disease investigation and virus isolation.

  6. An investigation into resting behavior in Asian elephants in UK zoos.

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    Williams, Ellen; Bremner-Harrison, Samantha; Harvey, Naomi; Evison, Emma; Yon, Lisa

    2015-01-01

    Maintaining adequate welfare in captive elephants is challenging. Few studies have investigated overnight rest behavior in zoo elephants, yet time spent resting has been identified as a welfare indicator in some species. We investigated resting behavior in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in UK zoos, with the aim of identifying patterns or preferences in lying rest. Details of standing (SR) and lying (LR) rest behavior were identified by observing video footage of inside enclosures collected for 14 elephants (2 male, 12 female) housed at three UK zoos (Zoo A: 18 nights; Zoo B: 27 nights; Zoo C: 46 nights) from 16:00 to 08:30 (approximately). Elephants engaged in a mean of 58-337 min rest per night. Time of night affected mean duration of LR bouts (P Elephants showed a substrate preference when lying to rest; LR was not observed on concrete or tiled flooring. Where sand was available (to 11/14 elephants), all elephants engaged in LR on sand flooring. Only two elephants engaged in LR on rubber flooring (available to 7/14 elephants). Mean duration of rest bouts was greater when a conspecific was within two body lengths than when conspecifics were not (P elephants show substrate preferences when choosing an area for rest and engage in more rest when conspecifics are in close proximity. The results of this study could be used as a basis for future studies investigating the link between rest and welfare in captive elephants.

  7. Fatal herpesvirus hemorrhagic disease in wild and orphan asian elephants in southern India.

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    Zachariah, Arun; Zong, Jian-Chao; Long, Simon Y; Latimer, Erin M; Heaggans, Sarah Y; Richman, Laura K; Hayward, Gary S

    2013-04-01

    Up to 65% of deaths of young Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) between 3 mo and 15 yr of age in Europe and North America over the past 20 yr have been attributed to hemorrhagic disease associated with a novel DNA virus called elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV). To evaluate the potential role of EEHV in suspected cases of a similar lethal acute hemorrhagic disease occurring in southern India, we studied pathologic tissue samples collected from field necropsies. Nine cases among both orphaned camp and wild Asian elephants were identified by diagnostic PCR. These were subjected to detailed gene subtype DNA sequencing at multiple PCR loci, which revealed seven distinct strains of EEHV1A and one of EEHV1B. Two orphan calves that died within 3 days of one another at the same training camp had identical EEHV1A DNA sequences, indicating a common epidemiologic source. However, the high level of EEHV1 subtype genetic diversity found among the other Indian strains matches that among over 30 EEHV1 strains that have been evaluated from Europe and North America. These results argue against the previous suggestions that this is just a disease of captive elephants and that the EEHV1 virus has crossed recently from African elephant (Loxodonta africana) hosts to Asian elephants. Instead, both the virus and the disease are evidently widespread in Asia and, despite the disease severity, Asian elephants appear to be the ancient endogenous hosts of both EEHV1A and EEHV1B.

  8. Usual populations, unusual individuals: insights into the behavior and management of Asian elephants in fragmented landscapes.

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    Nishant M Srinivasaiah

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A dearth in understanding the behavior of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus at the scale of populations and individuals has left important management issues, particularly related to human-elephant conflict (HEC, unresolved. Evaluation of differences in behavior and decision-making among individual elephants across groups in response to changing local ecological settings is essential to fill this gap in knowledge and to improve our approaches towards the management and conservation of elephants. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We hypothesized certain behavioral decisions that would be made by Asian elephants as reflected in their residence time and movement rates, time-activity budgets, social interactions and group dynamics in response to resource availability and human disturbance in their habitat. This study is based on 200 h of behavioral observations on 60 individually identified elephants and a 184-km(2 grid-based survey of their natural and anthropogenic habitats within and outside the Bannerghatta National Park, southern India during the dry season. At a general population level, the behavioral decisions appeared to be guided by the gender, age and group-type of the elephants. At the individual level, the observed variation could be explained only by the idiosyncratic behaviors of individuals and that of their associating conspecific individuals. Recursive partitioning classification trees for residence time of individual elephants indicated that the primary decisions were taken by individuals, independently of their above-mentioned biological and ecological attributes. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Decision-making by Asian elephants thus appears to be determined at two levels, that of the population and, more importantly, the individual. Models based on decision-making by individual elephants have the potential to predict conflict in fragmented landscapes that, in turn, could aid in mitigating HEC. Thus, we must target individuals

  9. Preliminary validation of assays to measure parameters of calcium metabolism in captive Asian and African elephants in western Europe.

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    van Sonsbeek, Gerda R; van der Kolk, Johannes H; van Leeuwen, Johannes P T M; Schaftenaar, Willem

    2011-05-01

    Hypocalcemia is a well known cause of dystocia in animals, including elephants in captivity. In order to study calcium metabolism in elephants, it is of utmost importance to use properly validated assays, as these might be prone to specific matrix effects in elephant blood. The aim of the current study was to conduct preliminary work for validation of various parameters involved in calcium metabolism in both blood and urine of captive elephants. Basal values of these parameters were compared between Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and African elephants (Loxodonta africana). Preliminary testing of total calcium, inorganic phosphorus, and creatinine appeared valid for use in plasma and creatinine in urine in both species. Furthermore, measurements of bone alkaline phosphatase and N-terminal telopeptide of type I collagen appeared valid for use in Asian elephants. Mean heparinized plasma ionized calcium concentration and pH were not significantly affected by 3 cycles of freezing and thawing. Storage at 4 °C, room temperature, and 37 °C for 6, 12, and 24 hr did not alter the heparinized plasma ionized calcium concentration in Asian elephants. The following linear regression equation using pH (range: 6.858-7.887) and ionized calcium concentration in heparinized plasma was utilized: iCa(7.4) (mmol/l) = -2.1075 + 0.3130·pH(actual) + 0.8296·iCa(actual) (mmol/l). Mean basal values for pH and plasma in Asian elephant whole blood were 7.40 ± 0.048 and 7.49 ± 0.077, respectively. The urinary specific gravity and creatinine concentrations in both Asian and African elephants were significantly correlated and both were significantly lower in Asian elephants.

  10. A quantification of damage and assessment of economic loss due to crop raiding by Asian Elephant Elephas maximus (Mammalia: Proboscidea: Elephantidae: a case study of Manas National Park, Assam, India

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    Naba K. Nath

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available A study was carried out in Manas National Park, Assam in northeastern India between 2007 and 2009 to understand the magnitude of human-elephant conflict through a quantification of damage and assessment of economic loss. A cluster of six villages adjacent to the Park was selected for this study. Five major agricultural crops were grown during the study period of which three were raided by elephants: winter paddy, autumn paddy and pulses. Paddy was the principle crop central to the farmers’ subsistence. Winter paddy was the most cultivated crop and autumn paddy was the least cultivated. The incidence rate of crop raiding was highest for autumn paddy and lowest for pulses. Overall economic loss due to crop raiding was negligible, however at the individual farmer level, it was quite high. The study revealed that human-elephant conflict is not so severe, indicating ample opportunity for human-elephant coexistence in the region. Crop fields adjacent to the Park were particularly vulnerable to crop raiding which necessitates creation of a buffer zone. The frequency of raiding and the extent of damage was found to be significantly less in crop fields which were guarded by farmers. This was due to traditional crop guarding practices being followed in the region, the strengthening of which could effectively reduce annual crop loss and thus human-elephant conflict could be minimized to a large extent.

  11. Behavior rather than diet mediates seasonal differences in seed dispersal by Asian elephants.

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    Campos-Arceiz, Ahimsa; Larrinaga, Asier R; Weerasinghe, Udayani R; Takatsuki, Seiki; Pastorini, Jennifer; Leimgruber, Peter; Fernando, Prithiviraj; Santamaría, Luis

    2008-10-01

    Digestive physiology and movement patterns of animal dispersers determine deposition patterns for endozoochorously dispersed seeds. We combined data from feeding trials, germination tests, and GPS telemetry of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) to (1) describe the spatial scale at which Asian elephants disperse seeds; (2) assess whether seasonal differences in diet composition and ranging behavior translate into differences in seed shadows; and (3) evaluate whether scale and seasonal patterns vary between two ecologically distinct areas: Sri Lanka's dry monsoon forests and Myanmar's (Burma) mixed-deciduous forests. The combination of seed retention times (mean 39.5 h, maximum 114 h) and elephant displacement rates (average 1988 m in 116 hours) resulted in 50% of seeds dispersed over 1.2 km (mean 1222-2105 m, maximum 5772 m). Shifts in diet composition did not affect gut retention time and germination of ingested seeds. Elephant displacements were slightly longer, with stronger seasonal variation in Myanmar. As a consequence, seed dispersal curves varied seasonally with longer distances during the dry season in Myanmar but not in Sri Lanka. Seasonal and geographic variation in seed dispersal curves was the result of variation in elephant movement patterns, rather than the effect of diet changes on the fate of ingested seeds.

  12. Patterns and Determinants of Habitat Occupancy by the Asian Elephant in the Western Ghats of Karnataka, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jathanna, Devcharan; Karanth, K Ullas; Kumar, N Samba; Karanth, Krithi K; Goswami, Varun R

    2015-01-01

    Understanding species distribution patterns has direct ramifications for the conservation of endangered species, such as the Asian elephant Elephas maximus. However, reliable assessment of elephant distribution is handicapped by factors such as the large spatial scales of field studies, survey expertise required, the paucity of analytical approaches that explicitly account for confounding observation processes such as imperfect and variable detectability, unequal sampling probability and spatial dependence among animal detections. We addressed these problems by carrying out 'detection--non-detection' surveys of elephant signs across a c. 38,000-km(2) landscape in the Western Ghats of Karnataka, India. We analyzed the resulting sign encounter data using a recently developed modeling approach that explicitly addresses variable detectability across space and spatially dependent non-closure of occupancy, across sampling replicates. We estimated overall occupancy, a parameter useful to monitoring elephant populations, and examined key ecological and anthropogenic drivers of elephant presence. Our results showed elephants occupied 13,483 km(2) (SE = 847 km(2)) corresponding to 64% of the available 21,167 km(2) of elephant habitat in the study landscape, a useful baseline to monitor future changes. Replicate-level detection probability ranged between 0.56 and 0.88, and ignoring it would have underestimated elephant distribution by 2116 km(2) or 16%. We found that anthropogenic factors predominated over natural habitat attributes in determining elephant occupancy, underscoring the conservation need to regulate them. Human disturbances affected elephant habitat occupancy as well as site-level detectability. Rainfall is not an important limiting factor in this relatively humid bioclimate. Finally, we discuss cost-effective monitoring of Asian elephant populations and the specific spatial scales at which different population parameters can be estimated. We emphasize the need

  13. [Hemoglobins, XLVIII: the primary structure of hemoglobin of the Indian elephant (Elephas maximus, Proboscidea): beta 2 = Asn].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braunitzer, G; Jelkmann, W; Stangl, A; Schrank, B; Krombach, C

    1982-07-01

    The primary structure of the hemoglobin of the Indian Elephant (Elephas maximus) is given. The sequence was determined automatically in a sequenator. By homologous comparison with adult human HbA, the alpha-chains differ by 24 exchanges and the beta-chains by 27 exchanges. Furthermore, we report p(O2)50 values with regard to altered contact sites with 2,3-bisphosphoglycerate in Indian elephant hemoglobin. Our findings explain the low p(O2)50 and the reduced interaction with 2,3-bisphosphoglycerate. Elephant hemoglobin has, like that of the Llama, only five phosphate binding sites. In addition, we have made an attempt to relate these results to aspects of respiratory physiology. Some implications of these biochemical and physiological results, concerning the Second Punic War and Hannibal's Alp transition, are given.

  14. Heat storage in Asian elephants during submaximal exercise: behavioral regulation of thermoregulatory constraints on activity in endothermic gigantotherms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, M F; Bakken, G S; Ratliff, J J; Langman, V A

    2013-05-15

    Gigantic size presents both opportunities and challenges in thermoregulation. Allometric scaling relationships suggest that gigantic animals have difficulty dissipating metabolic heat. Large body size permits the maintenance of fairly constant core body temperatures in ectothermic animals by means of gigantothermy. Conversely, gigantothermy combined with endothermic metabolic rate and activity likely results in heat production rates that exceed heat loss rates. In tropical environments, it has been suggested that a substantial rate of heat storage might result in a potentially lethal rise in core body temperature in both elephants and endothermic dinosaurs. However, the behavioral choice of nocturnal activity might reduce heat storage. We sought to test the hypothesis that there is a functionally significant relationship between heat storage and locomotion in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), and model the thermoregulatory constraints on activity in elephants and a similarly sized migratory dinosaur, Edmontosaurus. Pre- and post-exercise (N=37 trials) measurements of core body temperature and skin temperature, using thermography were made in two adult female Asian elephants at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans, LA, USA. Over ambient air temperatures ranging from 8 to 34.5°C, when elephants exercised in full sun, ~56 to 100% of active metabolic heat production was stored in core body tissues. We estimate that during nocturnal activity, in the absence of solar radiation, between 5 and 64% of metabolic heat production would be stored in core tissues. Potentially lethal rates of heat storage in active elephants and Edmontosaurus could be behaviorally regulated by nocturnal activity.

  15. Problem-elephant translocation: translocating the problem and the elephant?

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    Prithiviraj Fernando

    Full Text Available Human-elephant conflict (HEC threatens the survival of endangered Asian elephants (Elephas maximus. Translocating "problem-elephants" is an important HEC mitigation and elephant conservation strategy across elephant range, with hundreds translocated annually. In the first comprehensive assessment of elephant translocation, we monitored 16 translocations in Sri Lanka with GPS collars. All translocated elephants were released into national parks. Two were killed within the parks where they were released, while all the others left those parks. Translocated elephants showed variable responses: "homers" returned to the capture site, "wanderers" ranged widely, and "settlers" established home ranges in new areas soon after release. Translocation caused wider propagation and intensification of HEC, and increased elephant mortality. We conclude that translocation defeats both HEC mitigation and elephant conservation goals.

  16. Problem-elephant translocation: translocating the problem and the elephant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernando, Prithiviraj; Leimgruber, Peter; Prasad, Tharaka; Pastorini, Jennifer

    2012-01-01

    Human-elephant conflict (HEC) threatens the survival of endangered Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Translocating "problem-elephants" is an important HEC mitigation and elephant conservation strategy across elephant range, with hundreds translocated annually. In the first comprehensive assessment of elephant translocation, we monitored 16 translocations in Sri Lanka with GPS collars. All translocated elephants were released into national parks. Two were killed within the parks where they were released, while all the others left those parks. Translocated elephants showed variable responses: "homers" returned to the capture site, "wanderers" ranged widely, and "settlers" established home ranges in new areas soon after release. Translocation caused wider propagation and intensification of HEC, and increased elephant mortality. We conclude that translocation defeats both HEC mitigation and elephant conservation goals.

  17. Differences in immune cell function between tuberculosis positive and negative Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landolfi, Jennifer A; Miller, Michele; Maddox, Carol; Zuckermann, Federico; Langan, Jennifer N; Terio, Karen A

    2014-07-01

    Tuberculosis is an important health concern for Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) populations worldwide, however, mechanisms underlying susceptibility to Mycobacterium tuberculosis are unknown. Proliferative responses assessed via brominated uridine incorporation and cytokine expression measured by real-time RT-PCR were evaluated in peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) cultures from 8 tuberculosis negative and 8 positive Asian elephants. Cultures were stimulated with Mycobacterium bovis purified protein derivative (PPD-B), M. tuberculosis culture filtrate protein (CFP)-10, and Mycobacterium avium PPD (PPD-A). Following stimulation with PPD-B, proliferation was higher (α = 0.005) in positive samples; no significant differences were detected following CFP-10 or PPD-A stimulation. Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-12, and interferon (IFN)-γ expression was greater in samples from positive elephants following stimulation with PPD-B (α = 0.025) and CFP-10 (α = 0.025 TNF-α and IL-12; α = 0.005 IFN-γ). Stimulation with PPD-A also produced enhanced IL-12 expression in positive samples (α = 0.025). Findings suggested that differences in immune cell function exist between tuberculosis positive and negative elephants. Proliferative responses and expression of TNF-α, IL-12, and IFN-γ in response to stimulation with PPD-B and CFP-10 differ between tuberculosis positive and negative elephants, suggesting these parameters may be important to tuberculosis immunopathogenesis in this species.

  18. Climatic variation and age-specific survival in Asian elephants from Myanmar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mumby, Hannah S; Courtiol, Alexandre; Mar, Khyne U; Lummaa, Virpi

    2013-05-01

    Concern about climate change has intensified interest in understanding how climatic variability affects animal life histories. Despite such effects being potentially most dramatic in large, long-lived, and slowly reproducing terrestrial mammals, little is known of the effects of climatic variation on survival in those species. Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) are endangered across their distribution, and inhabit regions characterized by high seasonality of temperature and rainfall. We investigated the effects of monthly climatic variation on survival and causes of death in Asian elephants using a unique demographic data set of 1024 semi-captive, longitudinally monitored elephants from four sites in Myanmar between 1965 and 2000. Temperature had a significant effect on survival in both sexes and across all ages. For elephants between 1 month and 17 years of age, maximal survival was reached at -24 degrees C, and any departures from this temperature increased mortality, whereas neonates and mature elephants had maximal survival at even lower temperatures. Although males experienced higher mortality overall, sex differences in these optimal temperatures were small. Because the elephants spent more time during a year in temperatures above 24 degrees C than in temperatures below it, most deaths occurred at hot (temperatures>24 degrees C) rather than cold periods. Decreased survival at higher temperatures resulted partially from increased deaths from infectious disease and heat stroke, whereas the lower survival in the coldest months was associated with an increase in noninfectious diseases and poor health in general. Survival was also related to rainfall, with the highest survival rates during the wettest months for all ages and sexes. Our results show that even the normal-range monsoon variation in climate can exert a large impact on elephant survival in Myanmar, leading to extensive absolute differences in mortality; switching from favorable to unfavorable climatic

  19. Elephants - a conservation overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.S. Riddle

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Loss of habitat is one of the most significant problems facing elephants worldwide, leading to clashes over resources between wildlife and humans where elephants receive the largest part of blame - defined as Human Elephant Conflict (HEC. The sub-Saharan region of Africa contains an approximate population of 500,000 elephants that occupy 37 range countries. The African Elephant (Loxodonta africana is categorized as Vulnerable in the Red List of Threatened Species; they are listed there as two distinct subspecies: the Savanna Elephant (L. a. africana and the Forest Elephant (L. a. cyclotis. The Red List of Threatened Species categorizes the Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus as endangered, and today they are found in 13 range states. The Asian Elephant population is estimated to be 30,000 to 50,000 with approximately 60% of the population being present in India. Due to threats of poaching, the elephant ivory debate has been an important part of recent meetings of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES as Parties have debated proposals for one-time sales of legal government stockpiles of elephant tusks. To maintain elephant populations into the future, long-term and large-scale planning is necessary to ensure adequate space and protection for elephants and people living in elephant habitats.

  20. Exposure of Asian Elephants and Other Exotic Ungulates to Schmallenberg Virus.

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    Fieke M Molenaar

    Full Text Available Schmallenberg virus (SBV is an emerging Orthobunyavirus, first described in 2011 in cattle in Germany and subsequently spread throughout Europe, affecting mainly ruminant livestock through the induction of foetal malformations. To gain a better understanding of the spectrum of susceptible species and to assess the value of current SBV serological assays, screening of serum samples from exotic artiodactyls and perissodactyls collected at the Living Collections from the Zoological Society of London (Whipsnade and London Zoos and Chester Zoo was carried out. There was compelling evidence of SBV infection in both zoological collections. The competitive ELISA has proved to be applicable for the detection of SBV in exotic Bovidae, Cervidae, Suidae, Giraffidae and most notably in endangered Asian elephants (Elephas maximus, but unreliable for the screening of Camelidae, for which the plaque reduction neutralisation test was considered the assay of choice.

  1. Minimum cost of transport in Asian elephants: do we really need a bigger elephant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langman, Vaughan A; Rowe, Michael F; Roberts, Thomas J; Langman, Nathanial V; Taylor, Charles R

    2012-05-01

    Body mass is the primary determinant of an animal's energy requirements. At their optimum walking speed, large animals have lower mass-specific energy requirements for locomotion than small ones. In animals ranging in size from 0.8 g (roach) to 260 kg (zebu steer), the minimum cost of transport (COT(min)) decreases with increasing body size roughly as COT(min)∝body mass (M(b))(-0.316±0.023) (95% CI). Typically, the variation of COT(min) with body mass is weaker at the intraspecific level as a result of physiological and geometric similarity within closely related species. The interspecific relationship estimates that an adult elephant, with twice the body mass of a mid-sized elephant, should be able to move its body approximately 23% cheaper than the smaller elephant. We sought to determine whether adult Asian and sub-adult African elephants follow a single quasi-intraspecific relationship, and extend the interspecific relationship between COT(min) and body mass to 12-fold larger animals. Physiological and possibly geometric similarity between adult Asian elephants and sub-adult African elephants caused body mass to have a no effect on COT(min) (COT(min)∝M(b)(0.007±0.455)). The COT(min) in elephants occurred at walking speeds between 1.3 and ∼1.5 m s(-1), and at Froude numbers between 0.10 and 0.24. The addition of adult Asian elephants to the interspecific relationship resulted in COT(min)∝M (-0.277±0.046)(b). The quasi-intraspecific relationship between body mass and COT(min) among elephants caused the interspecific relationship to underestimate COT(min) in larger elephants.

  2. In the elephant's seed shadow: the prospects of domestic bovids as replacement dispersers of three tropical Asian trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekar, Nitin; Lee, Chia-lo; Sukumar, Raman

    2015-08-01

    As populations of the world's largest animal species decline, it is unclear how ecosystems will react to their local extirpation. Due to the unique ecological characteristics of megaherbivores such as elephants, seed dispersal is one ecosystem process that may be affected as populations of large animals are decimated. In typically disturbed South Asian ecosystems, domestic bovids (cattle, Bosprimigenius, and buffalo, Bubalus bubalis) may often be the species most available to replace Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) as endozoochorous dispersers of large-fruited mammal-dispersed species. We use feeding trials, germination trials, and movement data from the tropical moist forests of Buxa Tiger Reserve (India) to examine whether domestic bovids are viable replacements for elephants in the dispersal of three large- fruited species: Dillenia indica, Artocarpus chaplasha, and Careya arborea. We find that (1) once consumed, seeds are between 2.5 (C. arborea) and 26.5 (D. indica) times more likely to pass undigested into elephant dung than domestic bovid dung; and (2) seeds from elephant dung germinated as well as or better than seeds taken from bovid dung for all plant species, with D. indica seeds from elephant dung 1.5 times more likely to germinate. Furthermore, since wild elephants have less constrained movements than even free-roaming domestic bovids, we calculate that maximum dispersal by elephants is between 9.5 and 11.2 times farther than that of domestic bovids, with about 20% of elephant-dispersed seeds being moved farther than the maximum distance seeds are moved by bovids. Our findings suggest that, while bovids are able to disperse substantial numbers of seeds over moderate distances for two of the three study species, domestic bovids will be unable to routinely emulate the reliable, long-distance dispersal of seeds executed by elephants in this tropical moist forest. Thus while domestic bovids can attenuate the effects of losing elephants as dispersers

  3. Elephant reproduction: improvement of breeding efficiency and development of a breeding strategy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thitaram, C.

    2009-01-01

    The efficiency of reproduction of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) has become of major concern. Captive breeding programs worldwide have met with limited success and few ex situ elephant populations are self-sustaining. The low birth rate and high mortality cause the captive population to declin

  4. Elephant Elephas maximus Linnaeus (Proboscidea: Elephantidae migration paths in the Nilgiri Hills, India in the late 1970s

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.R.C. Davidar

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The study presented was carried out in 1978 with the support of the Asian Elephant Specialist Group (AsESG of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC. Its objective was to investigate the impediments to elephant movement in the Nilgiri Hills, in the Western Ghats of India, in an attempt to suggest positive steps to encourage movement through the provision of corridors. The report was left unpublished, but given its importance as a reference document for the conservation of the Asian elephant in the Nilgiris, in 2011 the last two authors decided to publish it. The process of habitat fragmentation has been going on ever since man started agriculture. But this problem has, of late, become much more acute due to mounting pressure on land. The corridor concept applied to wildlife is the provision of a free and, as far as possible, unimpeded way for the passage of wild animals between two wildlife zones. A corridor’s more important function is to prevent wild animals from getting isolated in small pocket-like islands. Maintaining elephant habitat connectivity in and around the Nilgiris rests upon the understanding that elephant populations of the several protected areas of the now Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve must remain active. The first author surveyed the Nilgiris on foot and on elephant back for several months in 1978. It was concluded that four areas (the Nilgiri north slopes and Deccan Plateau, the south and southeastern slopes, the Gudalur Plateau, and the upper plateau harboured together 10 corridors that needed to be maintained, or restored, or even partially restored.

  5. Effects of rubberized flooring on Asian elephant behavior in captivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meller, Camie L; Croney, Candace C; Shepherdson, David

    2007-01-01

    Six Asian elephants at the Oregon Zoo were observed to determine the effects of a poured rubber flooring substrate on captive Asian elephant behavior. Room utilization also was evaluated in seven rooms used for indoor housing, including Front and Back observation areas. Data were collected in three phases. Phase I (Baseline Phase) examined elephant behavior on old concrete floors. In Phase II (Choice Phase), elephant behavior was observed in the Back observation area where room sizes were comparable and when a choice of flooring substrates was available. Phase III (Final Phase) examined elephant behavior when all rooms in both observation areas, Front and Back, were converted to rubberized flooring. Room use in both observation areas remained stable throughout the study, suggesting that flooring substrate did not affect room use choice. However, there was a clear pattern of decreased discomfort behaviors on the new rubber flooring. Normal locomotion as well as stereotypic locomotion increased on the new rubber flooring. In addition, resting behavior changed to more closely reflect the resting behavior of wild elephants, which typically sleep standing up, and spend very little time in lateral recumbence. Overall, these findings suggest that the rubber flooring may have provided a more comfortable surface for locomotion as well as standing resting behavior. It is suggested that poured rubber flooring may be a beneficial addition to similar animal facilities. Zoo Biol 0:1-11, 2007. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  6. Home range and ranging behaviour of Bornean elephant (Elephas maximus borneensis females.

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    Raymond Alfred

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Home range is defined as the extent and location of the area covered annually by a wild animal in its natural habitat. Studies of African and Indian elephants in landscapes of largely open habitats have indicated that the sizes of the home range are determined not only by the food supplies and seasonal changes, but also by numerous other factors including availability of water sources, habitat loss and the existence of man-made barriers. The home range size for the Bornean elephant had never been investigated before. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The first satellite tracking program to investigate the movement of wild Bornean elephants in Sabah was initiated in 2005. Five adult female elephants were immobilized and neck collars were fitted with tracking devices. The sizes of their home range and movement patterns were determined using location data gathered from a satellite tracking system and analyzed by using the Minimum Convex Polygon and Harmonic Mean methods. Home range size was estimated to be 250 to 400 km(2 in a non-fragmented forest and 600 km(2 in a fragmented forest. The ranging behavior was influenced by the size of the natural forest habitat and the availability of permanent water sources. The movement pattern was influenced by human disturbance and the need to move from one feeding site to another. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Home range and movement rate were influenced by the degree of habitat fragmentation. Once habitat was cleared or converted, the availability of food plants and water sources were reduced, forcing the elephants to travel to adjacent forest areas. Therefore movement rate in fragmented forest was higher than in the non-fragmented forest. Finally, in fragmented habitat human and elephant conflict occurrences were likely to be higher, due to increased movement bringing elephants into contact more often with humans.

  7. Sperm DNA fragmentation and morphological degeneration in chilled elephant (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta Africana) semen collected by transrectal massage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Brien, J K; Steinman, K J; Montano, G A; Love, C C; Robeck, T R

    2013-05-01

    Ejaculates from nine Asian and two African elephants were analysed to gain a further understanding of mechanisms underlying variable semen quality after transrectal massage. Semen analysis was performed after collection (0 h; subjective motility parameters only) and after 24 h of chilled storage at 10 °C (24 h; all ejaculate and sperm characteristics). Ejaculates with ≤50% total motility (TM) at 24 h, which represented >90% of collection attempts, contained a sperm population with a high degree of DNA damage (64.2 ± 19.2% fragmented DNA) and an elevated incidence of detached heads (43.3 ± 22.5%). In contrast, good quality ejaculates designated as those with >50% TM at 24 h displayed higher (p < 0.05) values of sperm kinetic parameters, DNA integrity and normal morphology. Fertility potential was high for good quality ejaculates from two males (one Asian and one African bull) based on in vitro characteristics after chilled storage for up to 48 h post-collection. Urine contamination of semen, as assessed quantitatively by creatinine concentration, was confirmed as a significant factor in reduced elephant ejaculate quality. However, the identification of considerable DNA damage and morphological degeneration in the majority of ejaculates after only 24 h of chilled storage indicates that sperm ageing could be a primary contributor to inconsistent semen quality in the elephant.

  8. When Yawning Occurs in Elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossman, Zoë T.; Hart, Benjamin L.; Greco, Brian J.; Young, Debbie; Padfield, Clare; Weidner, Lisa; Gates, Jennifer; Hart, Lynette A.

    2017-01-01

    Yawning is a widely recognized behavior in mammalian species. One would expect that elephants yawn, although to our knowledge, no one has reported observations of yawning in any species of elephant. After confirming a behavioral pattern matching the criteria of yawning in two Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in a zoological setting, this study was pursued with nine captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana) at a private reserve in the Western Cape, South Africa, the Knysna Elephant Park. Observations were made in June–September and in December. In the daytime, handlers managed seven of the elephants for guided interactions with visitors. At night, all elephants were maintained in a large enclosure with six having limited outdoor access. With infrared illumination, the elephants were continuously recorded by video cameras. During the nights, the elephants typically had 1–3 recumbent sleeping/resting bouts, each lasting 1–2 h. Yawning was a regular occurrence upon arousal from a recumbency, especially in the final recumbency of the night. Yawning was significantly more frequent in some elephants. Yawning was rare during the daytime and during periods of standing around in the enclosure at night. In six occurrences of likely contagious yawning, one elephant yawned upon seeing another elephant yawning upon arousal from a final recumbency; we recorded the sex and age category of the participants. The generality of yawning in both African and Asian elephants in other environments was documented in video recordings from 39 zoological facilities. In summary, the study provides evidence that yawning does occur in both African and Asian elephants, and in African elephants, yawning was particularly associated with arousal from nighttime recumbencies. PMID:28293560

  9. Taxonomy Icon Data: Asiatic elephant [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available Asiatic elephant Elephas maximus Chordata/Vertebrata/Mammalia/Theria/Eutheria/etc. Elephas_maximus..._L.png Elephas_maximus_NL.png Elephas_maximus_S.png Elephas_maximus_NS.png http://bioscienced...bc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Elephas+maximus&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Elephas+maximus...&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Elephas+maximus&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Elephas+maximus&t=NS ...

  10. How Big Is It Really? Assessing the Efficacy of Indirect Estimates of Body Size in Asian Elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, Simon N; Mumby, Hannah S; Crawley, Jennie A H; Mar, Khyne U; Htut, Win; Thura Soe, Aung; Aung, Htoo Htoo; Lummaa, Virpi

    2016-01-01

    Information on an organism's body size is pivotal in understanding its life history and fitness, as well as helping inform conservation measures. However, for many species, particularly large-bodied wild animals, taking accurate body size measurements can be a challenge. Various means to estimate body size have been employed, from more direct methods such as using photogrammetry to obtain height or length measurements, to indirect prediction of weight using other body morphometrics or even the size of dung boli. It is often unclear how accurate these measures are because they cannot be compared to objective measures. Here, we investigate how well existing estimation equations predict the actual body weight of Asian elephants Elephas maximus, using body measurements (height, chest girth, length, foot circumference and neck circumference) taken directly from a large population of semi-captive animals in Myanmar (n = 404). We then define new and better fitting formulas to predict body weight in Myanmar elephants from these readily available measures. We also investigate whether the important parameters height and chest girth can be estimated from photographs (n = 151). Our results show considerable variation in the ability of existing estimation equations to predict weight, and that the equations proposed in this paper predict weight better in almost all circumstances. We also find that measurements from standardised photographs reflect body height and chest girth after applying minor adjustments. Our results have implications for size estimation of large wild animals in the field, as well as for management in captive settings.

  11. How Big Is It Really? Assessing the Efficacy of Indirect Estimates of Body Size in Asian Elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon N Chapman

    Full Text Available Information on an organism's body size is pivotal in understanding its life history and fitness, as well as helping inform conservation measures. However, for many species, particularly large-bodied wild animals, taking accurate body size measurements can be a challenge. Various means to estimate body size have been employed, from more direct methods such as using photogrammetry to obtain height or length measurements, to indirect prediction of weight using other body morphometrics or even the size of dung boli. It is often unclear how accurate these measures are because they cannot be compared to objective measures. Here, we investigate how well existing estimation equations predict the actual body weight of Asian elephants Elephas maximus, using body measurements (height, chest girth, length, foot circumference and neck circumference taken directly from a large population of semi-captive animals in Myanmar (n = 404. We then define new and better fitting formulas to predict body weight in Myanmar elephants from these readily available measures. We also investigate whether the important parameters height and chest girth can be estimated from photographs (n = 151. Our results show considerable variation in the ability of existing estimation equations to predict weight, and that the equations proposed in this paper predict weight better in almost all circumstances. We also find that measurements from standardised photographs reflect body height and chest girth after applying minor adjustments. Our results have implications for size estimation of large wild animals in the field, as well as for management in captive settings.

  12. Recumbence Behavior in Zoo Elephants: Determination of Patterns and Frequency of Recumbent Rest and Associated Environmental and Social Factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holdgate, Matthew R; Meehan, Cheryl L; Hogan, Jennifer N; Miller, Lance J; Rushen, Jeff; de Passillé, Anne Marie; Soltis, Joseph; Andrews, Jeff; Shepherdson, David J

    2016-01-01

    Resting behaviors are an essential component of animal welfare but have received little attention in zoological research. African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) and Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) rest includes recumbent postures, but no large-scale investigation of African and Asian zoo elephant recumbence has been previously conducted. We used anklets equipped with accelerometers to measure recumbence in 72 adult female African (n = 44) and Asian (n = 28) elephants housed in 40 North American zoos. We collected 344 days of data and determined associations between recumbence and social, housing, management, and demographic factors. African elephants were recumbent less (2.1 hours/day, S.D. = 1.1) than Asian elephants (3.2 hours/day, S.D. = 1.5; P zoo elephant welfare.

  13. Elephant natural history: a genomic perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roca, Alfred L; Ishida, Yasuko; Brandt, Adam L; Benjamin, Neal R; Zhao, Kai; Georgiadis, Nicholas J

    2015-01-01

    We review DNA-based studies of elephants and recently extinct proboscideans. The evidence indicates that little or no nuclear gene flow occurs between African savanna elephants (Loxodonta africana) and African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis), establishing that they comprise separate species. In all elephant species, males disperse, whereas females remain with their natal social group, leading to discordance in the phylogeography of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA patterns. Improvements in ancient DNA methods have permitted sequences to be generated from an increasing number of proboscidean fossils and have definitively established that the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) is the closest living relative of the extinct woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius). DNA-based methods have been developed to determine the geographic provenance of confiscated ivory in an effort to aid the conservation of elephants.

  14. Effect of mine discharge on the pattern of riverine habitat use of elephants Elephas maximus and other mammals in Singhbhum forests, Bihar, India

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singh, R.K.; Chowdhury, S.

    1999-11-01

    The aim of this paper is to access the influence of water quality both on the occurrence of, and utilization by, elephants (Elephas maximus) in a riverine habitat. Mining operations and other anthropogenic changes to natural river systems have caused degradation of the ecosystem for elephants. A decline in their numbers has been seen throughout the Singhbhum Forests, India due to fragmentation and loss of habitat. The need to preserve and restore the habitat of the elephant is accepted, but until the factors that influence their distribution are known and understood, suitable management plans cannot be implemented. The study area was the catchment of the river Koina where waste discharge from an iron oremine and processing plant impact upon water quality. The study period from April 1995 to March 1996 looked at sections of the river where unregulated mine discharge was made, and where regulation through tailing ponds controlled total suspended solids (TSS) output from the mine waste water to the river system. Various physico-chemical parameters recorded at seven sampling stations were quantified. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) segregated the key parameters in determining the discharge levels of both regulated and unregulated discharge at various sites.

  15. Molecular characterisation and genetic variation of Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus infection in captive young Asian elephants in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sripiboon, Supaphen; Jackson, Bethany; Ditcham, William; Holyoake, Carly; Robertson, Ian; Thitaram, Chatchote; Tankaew, Pallop; Letwatcharasarakul, Preeda; Warren, Kristin

    2016-10-01

    Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus (EEHV) is emerging as a new threat for elephant conservation, since being identified as the cause of severe, often fatal, haemorrhagic disease in young Asian elephants. To describe positive cases and the molecular relatedness of virus detected in elephants in Thailand, we re-examined all available of EEHV samples occurring in young elephants in Thailand between 2006 and 2014 (n=24). Results indicated 75% (18/24) of suspected cases were positive for EEHV by semi-nested PCR. Further gene analysis identified these positive cases as EEHV1A (72%, 13/18 cases), EEHV1B (11%, 2/18) and EEHV4 (17%, 3/18). This study is the first to phylogenetically analyse and provide an overview of most of the known EEHV cases that have occurred in Thailand. Positive individuals ranged in age from one to nine years, with no sex association detected, and occurred across geographical locations throughout the country. All individuals, except one, were captive-born. No history of direct contact among the cases was recorded, and this together with the fact that various subtype clusters of virus were found, implied that none of the positive cases were epidemiologically related. These results concur with the hypothesis that EEHV1 is likely to be an ancient endogenous pathogen in Asian elephants. It is recommended that active surveillance and routine monitoring for EEHV should be undertaken in all elephant range countries, to gain a better understanding of the epidemiology, transmission and prevention of this disease.

  16. Personality assessment and its association with genetic factors in captive Asian and African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yasui, Saki; Konno, Akitsugu; Tanaka, Masayuki; Idani, Gen'ichi; Ludwig, Arne; Lieckfeldt, Dietmar; Inoue-Murayama, Miho

    2013-01-01

    Elephants live in a complex society based on matrilineal groups. Management of captive elephants is difficult, partly because each elephant has a unique personality. For a better understanding of elephant well being in captivity, it would be helpful to systematically evaluate elephants' personalities and their underlying biological basis. We sent elephant' personality questionnaires to keepers of 75 elephants. We also used 196 elephant DNA samples to search for genetic polymorphisms in genes expressed in the brain that have been suggested to be related to personality traits. Three genes, androgen receptor (AR), fragile X related mental retardation protein interacting protein (NUFIP2), and acheate-scute homologs 1 (ASH1) contained polymorphic regions. We examined the association of personality with intraspecific genetic variation in 17 Asian and 28 African elephants. The results suggest that the ASH1 genotype was associated with neuroticism in Asian elephants. Subjects with short alleles had lower scores of neuroticism than those with long alleles. This is the first report of an association between a genetic polymorphism and personality in elephants.

  17. Susceptibility of Cultivated Plants to Sumatran Elephant (Elephas maxi,us sumatranus in The Human Elephants Conflict Area in Aceh Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaniwa Berliani

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Study on human-elephant conflict was conducted in Aceh Province in August 2013-April 2014 to assess susceptibility of farms by crop raiding elephants. The locations were determined by selected areas impacted by elephant conflict incuding Cot Girek, Mane, Meureudu, Sampoiniet, and Pantai Ceureumen. 150 respondents was interviewed to assess the variety of the commodity plants species cultivated by local community within study areas, species of damaged commodity plants, species of undamaged commodity plants, and the planting system. there were 29 species considered as commodity plants cultivated by farmers. Moreover, 5 commodity plants were considered as high risk plants damaged by elephant including areca, banana, oil palm, paddy, and rubber. on the other hand, species considered as low risk or undamaged consist of cacao, coffee, chili, candlenut, and patchioli. Those low risk or undemaged commodity plants species have a potential to be promoted as elephant-friendly crop commodities in area adjacent to elephant habitat based on the analysis and the categorization of susceptibility of cultivated plants against crop raiding elephant. One of the problem of humn-elephant conflict is crop raiding of village farms. it is a assumed that elephants might destroy a particular species therefore information on the species could assist farmers in selecting appropriate crop to be planted. there is a risk that current polyculture and monoculture planting system used by farmers will not prevent farms from crop raiding elephants.

  18. Climate influences thermal balance and water use in African and Asian elephants: physiology can predict drivers of elephant distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunkin, Robin C; Wilson, Dinah; Way, Nicolas; Johnson, Kari; Williams, Terrie M

    2013-08-01

    Elephant movement patterns in relation to surface water demonstrate that they are a water-dependent species. Thus, there has been interest in using surface water management to mitigate problems associated with localized elephant overabundance. However, the physiological mechanisms underlying the elephant's water dependence remain unclear. Although thermoregulation is likely an important driver, the relationship between thermoregulation, water use and climate has not been quantified. We measured skin surface temperature of and cutaneous water loss from 13 elephants (seven African, 3768±642 kg; six Asian, 3834±498 kg) and determined the contribution of evaporative cooling to their thermal and water budgets across a range of air temperatures (8-33°C). We also measured respiratory evaporative water loss and resting metabolic heat production on a subset of elephants (N=7). The rate of cutaneous evaporative water loss ranged between 0.31 and 8.9 g min(-1) m(-2) for Asian elephants and 0.26 and 6.5 g min(-1) m(-2) for African elephants. Simulated thermal and water budgets using climate data from Port Elizabeth, South Africa, and Okaukuejo, Namibia, suggested that the 24-h evaporative cooling water debt incurred in warm climates can be more than 4.5 times that incurred in mesic climates. This study confirms elephants are obligate evaporative coolers but suggests that classification of elephants as water dependent is insufficient given the importance of climate in determining the magnitude of this dependence. These data highlight the potential for a physiological modeling approach to predicting the utility of surface water management for specific populations.

  19. Validation of a new radiographic protocol for Asian elephant feet and description of their radiographic anatomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mumby, C; Bouts, T; Sambrook, L; Danika, S; Rees, E; Parry, A; Rendle, M; Masters, N; Weller, R

    2013-10-05

    Foot problems are extremely common in elephants and radiography is the only imaging method available but the radiographic anatomy has not been described in detail. The aims of this study were to develop a radiographic protocol for elephant feet using digital radiography, and to describe the normal radiographic anatomy of the Asian elephant front and hind foot. A total of fifteen cadaver foot specimens from captive Asian elephants were radiographed using a range of projections and exposures to determine the best radiographic technique. This was subsequently tested in live elephants in a free-contact setting. The normal radiographic anatomy of the Asian elephant front and hind foot was described with the use of three-dimensional models based on CT reconstructions. The projection angles that were found to be most useful were 65-70° for the front limb and 55-60° in the hind limb. The beam was centred 10-15 cm proximal to the cuticle in the front and 10-15 cm dorsal to the plantar edge of the sole in the hind foot depending on the size of the foot. The protocol developed can be used for larger-scale diagnostic investigations of captive elephant foot disorders, while the normal radiographic anatomy described can improve the diagnostic reliability of elephant feet radiography.

  20. Taking the heat: thermoregulation in Asian elephants under different climatic conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weissenböck, Nicole M; Arnold, Walter; Ruf, Thomas

    2012-02-01

    Some mammals indigenous to desert environments, such as camels, cope with high heat load by tolerating an increase in body temperature (T (b)) during the hot day, and by dissipating excess heat during the cooler night hours, i.e., heterothermy. Because diurnal heat storage mechanisms should be favoured by large body size, we investigated whether this response also exists in Asian elephants when exposed to warm environmental conditions of their natural habitat. We compared daily cycles of intestinal T (b) of 11 adult Asian elephants living under natural ambient temperatures (T (a)) in Thailand (mean T (a) ~ 30°C) and in 6 Asian elephants exposed to cooler conditions (mean T (a) ~ 21°C) in Germany. Elephants in Thailand had mean daily ranges of T (b) oscillations (1.15°C) that were significantly larger than in animals kept in Germany (0.51°C). This was due to both increased maximum T (b) during the day and decreased minimum T (b) at late night. Elephant's minimum T (b) lowered daily as T (a) increased and hence entered the day with a thermal reserve for additional heat storage, very similar to arid-zone ungulates. We conclude that these responses show all characteristics of heterothermy, and that this thermoregulatory strategy is not restricted to desert mammals, but is also employed by Asian elephants.

  1. Wild Asian elephants distinguish aggressive tiger and leopard growls according to perceived danger.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thuppil, Vivek; Coss, Richard G

    2013-10-23

    Prey species exhibit antipredator behaviours such as alertness, aggression and flight, among others, in response to predators. The nature of this response is variable, with animals reacting more strongly in situations of increased vulnerability. Our research described here is the first formal study to investigate night-time antipredator behaviour in any species of elephants, Asian or African. We examined the provocative effects of elephant-triggered tiger and leopard growls while elephants attempted to crop-raid. Tigers opportunistically prey on elephant calves, whereas leopards pose no threat; therefore, we predicted that the elephant response would be reflective of this difference. Elephants reacted similarly cautiously to the simulated presence of felids of both species by eventually moving away, but differed markedly in their more immediate behavioural responses. Elephants retreated silently to tiger-growl playbacks, whereas they responded with aggressive vocalizations, such as trumpets and grunts, to leopard-growl playbacks. Elephants also lingered in the area and displayed alert or investigative behaviours in response to leopard growls when compared with tiger growls. We anticipate that the methods outlined here will promote further study of elephant antipredator behaviour in a naturalistic context, with applications for conservation efforts as well.

  2. Vocal learning in elephants: neural bases and adaptive context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoeger, Angela S; Manger, Paul

    2014-10-01

    In the last decade clear evidence has accumulated that elephants are capable of vocal production learning. Examples of vocal imitation are documented in African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants, but little is known about the function of vocal learning within the natural communication systems of either species. We are also just starting to identify the neural basis of elephant vocalizations. The African elephant diencephalon and brainstem possess specializations related to aspects of neural information processing in the motor system (affecting the timing and learning of trunk movements) and the auditory and vocalization system. Comparative interdisciplinary (from behavioral to neuroanatomical) studies are strongly warranted to increase our understanding of both vocal learning and vocal behavior in elephants.

  3. Behavioral changes in female Asian elephants when given access to an outdoor yard overnight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, David M; Vitale, Cathy

    2016-07-01

    A study was conducted at the Bronx Zoo to determine whether providing elephants with access to an outdoor corral at night had any significant effects on behavior, use of space, and use of a sand corral. Activity budgets for three female Asian elephants were compared when the subjects were housed indoors overnight and when they were given access to an outdoor yard overnight. Observations were recorded via infrared video cameras between the hours of 1900 and 0700 during the months of July-September. Two of the three elephants showed a significant preference for spending time outdoors, whereas, the third elephant spent most of her time indoors. Standing and play behavior increased when the elephants had outdoor access while lying down and feeding behavior decreased. Swaying behavior decreased significantly when the elephants had access to the outdoor yard. The elephants made very little use of a sand-floor stall regardless of whether or not they had access to outdoors. The results of this study, suggest that having access to alternate areas overnight can promote well-being by reducing repetitive behavior and allowing animals to express their preferences for different locations. The relative importance of choice alone vs. the behavioral opportunities provided by choice options for zoo animals is discussed. Zoo Biol. 35:298-303, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. The elephants of Zoba Gash Barka, Eritrea: part 4. Cholelithiasis in a wild African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agnew, Dalen W; Hagey, Lee; Shoshani, Jeheskel

    2005-12-01

    A 4.0-kg cholelith was found within the abdominal cavity of a dead wild African elephant (Loxodonta africana) in Eritrea. Analysis of this cholelith by histochemistry, electron microscopy, electrospray mass spectroscopy, and energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy revealed it was composed of bile alcohols but no calcium, bilirubin, or cholesterol. Bacteria were also found in the cholelith. Similar, but smaller, bile stones have been identified previously in other wild African elephants and an excavated mammoth (Mammuthus columbi). Choleliths have been reported only once in a captive Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). Elephants, along with hyraxes (Procavia capensis) and manatees (Trichechus manatus), are unique among mammals in producing only bile alcohols and no bile acids, which may predispose them to cholelithiasis, particularly in association with bacterial infection. Dietary factors may also play an important role in cholelith formation.

  5. Analysis of nutrient components of food for Asian Elephants in the wild and in captivity

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Lihong; LIN Liu; HE Qian; ZHANG Jinguo; ZHANG Li

    2007-01-01

    Thirty-seven wild plants as food for Asian elephants in the field in Simao,Yunnan province,China and five cultivated plants as food for captive elephants in the Beijing Zoo were collected and analyzed for their main nutrient components.Protein,fat,fiber,dry material,ash as well as major microelements:calcium,kalium,zincum,sodium in the food were analyzed by standard methodology.No significant differences were found between the wild plants taken in the field and forage provided in captivity.However,the calcium content in the forage is significantly less than the average of those in the wild plants.It is suggested that the increase in calcium intake may contribute to the relief of low plasma calcium diseases of elephants in captivity.

  6. Initial findings on visual acuity thresholds in an African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shyan-Norwalt, Melissa R; Peterson, Jeff; Milankow King, Barbara; Staggs, Timothy E; Dale, Robert H I

    2010-01-01

    There are only a few published examinations of elephant visual acuity. All involved Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and found visual acuity to be between 8' and 11' of arc for a stimulus near the tip of the trunk, equivalent to a 0.50 cm gap, at a distance of about 2 m from the eyes. We predicted that African elephants (Loxodonta africana) would have similarly high visual acuity, necessary to facilitate eye-trunk coordination for feeding, drinking and social interactions. When tested on a discrimination task using Landolt-C stimuli, one African elephant cow demonstrated a visual acuity of 48' of arc. This represents the ability to discriminate a gap as small as 2.75 cm in a stimulus 196 cm from the eye. This single-subject study provides a preliminary estimate of the visual acuity of African elephants.

  7. Eradication of elephant ear mites (Loxoanoetus bassoni) in two African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Jeff; DiVincenti, Louis

    2012-03-01

    Elephant ear mites, not previously described in North America, were eradicated in two African elephants (Loxodonta africana) after six otic instillations of ivermectin at 2-wk intervals. The microscopic examination of a clear, mucoid discharge collected from the external ear canals of two wild-born African elephants housed in a New York State zoo for 25 yr revealed live mites (Loxoaneotus bassoni). The cytologic examination demonstrated no evidence of inflammation or infection. Both elephants were asymptomatic with normal hemograms and serum chemistry panels. A diagnosis of otoacariasis was made. Each elephant was treated six times with 5 ml of 1% ivermectin syrup instilled in each ear canal once every 2 wk. Microscopic examinations of clear mucus collected from each elephant's ear canals 9 days after the first instillation of ivermectin were negative for any life stages of ear mites. Microscopic examinations of mucus collected from both elephants' ear canals at 6, 11, and 16 wk, as well as annually post-treatment for 7 yr, confirmed eradication of the ear mites. The L. bassoni ear mite was first identified in the external ear canals of wild, asymptomatic, lesion-free, African elephants culled in Kruger National Park in South Africa. However, a new species in the same genus of mites (Loxoanoetus lenae) was identified at the necropsy of an 86-yr-old Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) living in a circus in Australia. The autopsy revealed a marked, ballooning distension of bone around the left external acoustic meatus, suggestive of mite-induced otitis externa, as seen in cattle infested with ear mites (Raillieta auris). Elephant health care providers should identify the prevalence of, and consider treatment of, elephants in their care infested with ear mites, given the possible risk for adverse health effects.

  8. Evidence and potential risk factors of tuberculosis among captive Asian elephants and wildlife staff in Peninsular Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yakubu, Yusuf; Ong, Bee Lee; Zakaria, Zunita; Hassan, Latiffah; Mutalib, Abdul Rahim; Ngeow, Yun Fong; Verasahib, Khebir; Razak, Mohd Firdaus Ariff Abdul

    2016-03-01

    Elephant tuberculosis (TB) caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis is an important re-emerging zoonosis with considerable conservation and public health risk. We conducted prospective cohort and cross-sectional studies in elephants and wildlife staff respectively in order to identify potential risk factors associated with TB in captive Asian elephants and their handlers in Peninsular Malaysia. Sixty elephants in six different facilities were screened for TB longitudinally using the ElephantTB STAT-PAK and DPP VetTB assays from February 2012 to May 2014, and 149 wildlife staff were examined for tuberculosis infection using the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-tube (QFT) assay from January to April, 2012. Information on potential risk factors associated with infection in both elephants and staff were collected using questionnaires and facility records. The overall seroprevalence of TB amongst the elephants was 23.3% (95% CI: 13.8-36.3) and the risk of seroconversion was significantly higher among elephants with assigned mahouts [p=0.022, OR=4.9 (95% CI: 1.3-18.2)]. The percentage of QFT responders among wildlife staff was 24.8% (95% CI: 18.3-32.7) and the risk of infection was observed to be significantly associated with being a zoo employee [p=0.018, OR=2.7 (95% CI: 1.2-6.3)] or elephant handler [p=0.035, OR=4.1 (95% CI: 1.1-15.5)]. These findings revealed a potential risk of TB infection in captive elephants and handlers in Malaysia, and emphasize the need for TB screening of newly acquired elephants, isolating sero-positive elephants and performing further diagnostic tests to determine their infection status, and screening elephant handlers for TB, pre- and post-employment.

  9. Population pharmacokinetics of rifampin in the treatment of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egelund, E F; Isaza, R; Brock, A P; Alsultan, A; An, G; Peloquin, C A

    2015-04-01

    The objective of this study was to develop a population pharmacokinetic model for rifampin in elephants. Rifampin concentration data from three sources were pooled to provide a total of 233 oral concentrations from 37 Asian elephants. The population pharmacokinetic models were created using Monolix (version 4.2). Simulations were conducted using ModelRisk. We examined the influence of age, food, sex, and weight as model covariates. We further optimized the dosing of rifampin based upon simulations using the population pharmacokinetic model. Rifampin pharmacokinetics were best described by a one-compartment open model including first-order absorption with a lag time and first-order elimination. Body weight was a significant covariate for volume of distribution, and food intake was a significant covariate for lag time. The median Cmax of 6.07 μg/mL was below the target range of 8-24 μg/mL. Monte Carlo simulations predicted the highest treatable MIC of 0.25 μg/mL with the current initial dosing recommendation of 10 mg/kg, based upon a previously published target AUC0-24/MIC > 271 (fAUC > 41). Simulations from the population model indicate that the current dose of 10 mg/kg may be adequate for MICs up to 0.25 μg/mL. While the targeted AUC/MIC may be adequate for most MICs, the median Cmax for all elephants is below the human and elephant targeted ranges.

  10. Non-invasive assessment of reproductive status and stress in captive Asian elephants in three south Indian zoos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Vinod; Palugulla Reddy, Vivekananda; Kokkiligadda, Adiseshu; Shivaji, Sisinthy; Umapathy, Govindhaswamy

    2014-05-15

    Asian elephants in captivity need immediate attention to be bred so as to meet the increasing demand for captive elephants and to overcome the dependence on supplementing the captive stock with wild animals. Unfortunately, captive breeding programs across the globe have met with limited success and therefore more effort is needed to improve breeding in captivity. Endocrine profiling of reproductive hormones (progestagens and androgens) and the stress hormone (glucocorticoids) could facilitate better management and breeding strategies. In the present study, we investigated reproductive and stress physiology of 12 captive Asian elephants for 10-27 months using a non-invasive method based on steroid analysis of 1700 elephant dung samples. Most of the elephants were cycling regularly. Males during musth showed increased fecal androgen metabolite concentrations and exhibited a slight increase in fecal glucocorticoid metabolite levels. Elephants used in public festivals and processions showed significantly increased in faecal glucocorticoid metabolite levels. The results indicate that captive elephants require periodic health care, better husbandry practices and scientific management for sustainable captive population.

  11. The identification of elephant ivory evidences of illegal trade with mitochondrial cytochrome b gene and hypervariable D-loop region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Eun-jung; Lee, Yang-han; Moon, Seo-hyun; Kim, Nam-ye; Kim, Soon-hee; Yang, Moon-sik; Choi, Dong-ho; Han, Myun-soo

    2013-04-01

    DNA analysis of elephant ivory of illegal trade was handled in this work. The speciation and geographical origin of nine specimens of elephant ivory were requested by the police. Without national authorization, the suspect had purchased processed ivory seals from January to May, 2011 by Internet transactions from a site in a neighboring country. The DNA of decalcified ivory evidences was isolated with QIAGEN Micro Kit. The total 844-904 base pair sized sequences of mitochondrial cytochrome b and D-loop region could be acquired using direct sequencing analysis. They were compared with the sequences registered in GenBank. It was confirmed that most specimens were likely from African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis), one from African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) and one from Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). Analysis of the mitochondrial hypervariable D-loop region sequence of elephants verified that one African savanna elephant might be from South Africa and one Asian elephant from Laos. Cytochrome b and D-loop region located in the mitochondrial DNA resulted in the successful determination of elephant DNA from nine processed ivory specimens.

  12. Elephants also like coffee: trends and drivers of human-elephant conflicts in coffee agroforestry landscapes of Kodagu, Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bal, P; Nath, C D; Nanaya, K M; Kushalappa, C G; Garcia, C

    2011-05-01

    Kodagu district produces 2% of the world's coffee, in complex, multistoried agroforestry systems. The forests of the district harbour a large population of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). The combined effects of high elephant density and major landscape changes due to the expansion of coffee cultivation are the cause of human-elephant conflicts (HEC). Mitigation strategies, including electric fences and compensation schemes implemented by the Forest Department have met with limited success. Building on previous studies in the area, we assessed current spatial and temporal trends of conflict, analysed local stakeholders' perceptions and identified factors driving elephants into the estates. Our study, initiated in May 2007, shows that the intensity of HEC has increased over the last 10 years, exhibiting new seasonal patterns. Conflict maps and the lack of correlation between physical features of the coffee plantations and elephant visits suggest elephants move along corridors between the eastern and western forests of the district, opportunistically foraging when crossing the plantations. Dung analyses indicate elephants have selectively included ripe coffee berries in their diet. This is, to our knowledge, the first report of wild elephants feeding on coffee berries. If this new behaviour spreads through the population, it will compound an already severe conflict situation. The behavioural plasticity, the multiplicity of stakeholders involved, the difficulty in defining the problem and the limits of technical solutions already proposed suggest that HEC in Kodagu has the ingredients of a "wicked" problem whose resolution will require more shared understanding and problem solving work amongst the stakeholders.

  13. Erratum to: Elephants also like coffee: Trends and drivers of human-elephant conflicts in coffee agroforestry landscapes of Kodagu, Western Ghats, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bal, P; Nath, C D; Nanaya, K M; Kushalappa, C G; Garcia, C

    2011-08-01

    Kodagu district produces 2% of the world's coffee, in complex, multistoried agroforestry systems. The forests of the district harbour a large population of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). The combined effects of high elephant density and major landscape changes due to the expansion of coffee cultivation are the cause of human-elephant conflicts (HEC). Mitigation strategies, including electric fences and compensation schemes implemented by the Forest Department have met with limited success. Building on previous studies in the area, we assessed current spatial and temporal trends of conflict, analysed local stakeholders' perceptions and identified factors driving elephants into the estates. Our study, initiated in May 2007, shows that the intensity of HEC has increased over the last 10 years, exhibiting new seasonal patterns. Conflict maps and the lack of correlation between physical features of the coffee plantations and elephant visits suggest elephants move along corridors between the eastern and western forests of the district, opportunistically foraging when crossing the plantations. Dung analyses indicate elephants have selectively included ripe coffee berries in their diet. This is, to our knowledge, the first report of wild elephants feeding on coffee berries. If this new behaviour spreads through the population, it will compound an already severe conflict situation. The behavioural plasticity, the multiplicity of stakeholders involved, the difficulty in defining the problem and the limits of technical solutions already proposed suggest that HEC in Kodagu has the ingredients of a "wicked" problem whose resolution will require more shared understanding and problem solving work amongst the stakeholders.

  14. Elephants Also Like Coffee: Trends and Drivers of Human-Elephant Conflicts in Coffee Agroforestry Landscapes of Kodagu, Western Ghats, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bal, P.; Nath, C. D.; Nanaya, K. M.; Kushalappa, C. G.; Garcia, C.

    2011-05-01

    Kodagu district produces 2% of the world's coffee, in complex, multistoried agroforestry systems. The forests of the district harbour a large population of the Asian elephant ( Elephas maximus). The combined effects of high elephant density and major landscape changes due to the expansion of coffee cultivation are the cause of human-elephant conflicts (HEC). Mitigation strategies, including electric fences and compensation schemes implemented by the Forest Department have met with limited success. Building on previous studies in the area, we assessed current spatial and temporal trends of conflict, analysed local stakeholders' perceptions and identified factors driving elephants into the estates. Our study, initiated in May 2007, shows that the intensity of HEC has increased over the last 10 years, exhibiting new seasonal patterns. Conflict maps and the lack of correlation between physical features of the coffee plantations and elephant visits suggest elephants move along corridors between the eastern and western forests of the district, opportunistically foraging when crossing the plantations. Dung analyses indicate elephants have selectively included ripe coffee berries in their diet. This is, to our knowledge, the first report of wild elephants feeding on coffee berries. If this new behaviour spreads through the population, it will compound an already severe conflict situation. The behavioural plasticity, the multiplicity of stakeholders involved, the difficulty in defining the problem and the limits of technical solutions already proposed suggest that HEC in Kodagu has the ingredients of a "wicked" problem whose resolution will require more shared understanding and problem solving work amongst the stakeholders.

  15. Erratum: Erratum to: Elephants Also Like Coffee: Trends and Drivers of Human-Elephant Conflicts in Coffee Agroforestry Landscapes of Kodagu, Western Ghats, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bal, P.; Nath, C. D.; Nanaya, K. M.; Kushalappa, C. G.; Garcia, C.

    2011-08-01

    Kodagu district produces 2% of the world's coffee, in complex, multistoried agroforestry systems. The forests of the district harbour a large population of the Asian elephant ( Elephas maximus). The combined effects of high elephant density and major landscape changes due to the expansion of coffee cultivation are the cause of human-elephant conflicts (HEC). Mitigation strategies, including electric fences and compensation schemes implemented by the Forest Department have met with limited success. Building on previous studies in the area, we assessed current spatial and temporal trends of conflict, analysed local stakeholders' perceptions and identified factors driving elephants into the estates. Our study, initiated in May 2007, shows that the intensity of HEC has increased over the last 10 years, exhibiting new seasonal patterns. Conflict maps and the lack of correlation between physical features of the coffee plantations and elephant visits suggest elephants move along corridors between the eastern and western forests of the district, opportunistically foraging when crossing the plantations. Dung analyses indicate elephants have selectively included ripe coffee berries in their diet. This is, to our knowledge, the first report of wild elephants feeding on coffee berries. If this new behaviour spreads through the population, it will compound an already severe conflict situation. The behavioural plasticity, the multiplicity of stakeholders involved, the difficulty in defining the problem and the limits of technical solutions already proposed suggest that HEC in Kodagu has the ingredients of a "wicked" problem whose resolution will require more shared understanding and problem solving work amongst the stakeholders.

  16. Resolution of the type material of the Asian elephant, Elephas maximus Linnaeus, 1758 (Proboscidea, Elephantidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cappellini, Enrico; Gentry, A.; Palkopoulou, E.;

    2014-01-01

    The understanding of Earth's biodiversity depends critically on the accurate identification and nomenclature of species. Many species were described centuries ago, and in a surprising number of cases their nomenclature or type material remain unclear or inconsistent. A prime example is provided b...

  17. Evaluation of an In-house indirect ELISA for detection of antibody against haemorrhagic septicemia in Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tankaew, Pallop; Singh-La, Thawatchai; Titaram, Chatchote; Punyapornwittaya, Veerasak; Vongchan, Preeyanat; Sawada, Takuo; Sthitmatee, Nattawooti

    2017-03-01

    Pasteurella multocida causes haemorrhagic septicemia in livestock and wild animals, including elephants. The disease has been reported in Asian elephants in India and Sri Lanka, but to date there have been no reported cases in Thailand. ELISA or indirect hemagglutination assays (IHA) have been demonstrated to be able to detect the antibody against the disease in cattle, but no data are available for elephants. The present study reports a novel in-house indirect ELISA for antibody detection of haemorrhagic septicemia in Asian elephants, and evaluates the sensitivity and specificity of the method using a Bayesian approach. The characteristics of ELISA and IHA were analyzed using a one population Bayesian model assuming conditional dependence between these two diagnostic tests. The IHA was performed as recommended by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) manual for haemorrhagic septicemia. An in-house indirect ELISA was developed with a heat extract antigen of P. multocida strain M-1404 (serovar B:2) as a coating antigen and rabbit anti-immunoglobulin G conjugated with horseradish peroxidase (eIgG-HRP). The checkerboard titration method was done using elephant sera immunized with P. multocida bacterin and negative sera from colostrum-deprived elephant calves. The concentrations of heat extract antigen (160μg/ml), sample serum (1:100), and eIgG-HRP (1:1000) were optimal for the assay. The calculated cut-off value was 0.103. Of the elephant sera, 50.59% (43/85) were considered seropositive by ELISA. The sensitivity of the ELISA test was higher than that of the IHA test [median=86.5%, 95% posterior probability interval (PPI)=52.5-98.9%] while the specificity was lower (median=54.1%, PPI=43.6-64.7%). The median sensitivity and specificity of IHA were 80.5% (PPI=43.8-98.0%) and 78.4% (PPI=69.0-87.0%), respectively. These findings suggest that our in-house indirect ELISA can be used as a tool to detect the antibody against haemorrhagic septicemia in Asian

  18. Major histocompatibility complex variation and evolution at a single, expressed DQA locus in two genera of elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archie, Elizabeth A; Henry, Tammy; Maldonado, Jesus E; Moss, Cynthia J; Poole, Joyce H; Pearson, Virginia R; Murray, Suzan; Alberts, Susan C; Fleischer, Robert C

    2010-02-01

    Genes of the vertebrate major histocompatibility complex (MHC) are crucial to defense against infectious disease, provide an important measure of functional genetic diversity, and have been implicated in mate choice and kin recognition. As a result, MHC loci have been characterized for a number of vertebrate species, especially mammals;however, elephants are a notable exception. Our study is the first to characterize patterns of genetic diversity and natural selection in the elephant MHC. We did so using DNA sequences from a single, expressed DQA locus in elephants.We characterized six alleles in 30 African elephants(Loxodonta africana) and four alleles in three Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). In addition, for two of the African alleles and three of the Asian alleles, we characterized complete coding sequences (exons 1-5) and nearly complete non-coding sequences (introns 2-4) for the class II DQA loci. Compared to DQA in other wild mammals, we found moderate polymorphism and allelic diversity and similar patterns of selection; patterns of non-synonymous and synonymous substitutions were consistent with balancing selection acting on the peptides involved in antigen binding in the second exon. In addition, balancing selection has led to strong trans-species allelism that has maintained multiple allelic lineages across both genera of extant elephants for at least 6 million years. We discuss our results in the context of MHC diversity in other mammals and patterns of evolution in elephants.

  19. Elephant brain. Part I: gross morphology, functions, comparative anatomy, and evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoshani, Jeheskel; Kupsky, William J; Marchant, Gary H

    2006-06-30

    We report morphological data on brains of four African, Loxodonta africana, and three Asian elephants, Elephas maximus, and compare findings to literature. Brains exhibit a gyral pattern more complex and with more numerous gyri than in primates, humans included, and in carnivores, but less complex than in cetaceans. Cerebral frontal, parietal, temporal, limbic, and insular lobes are well developed, whereas the occipital lobe is relatively small. The insula is not as opercularized as in man. The temporal lobe is disproportionately large and expands laterally. Humans and elephants have three parallel temporal gyri: superior, middle, and inferior. Hippocampal sizes in elephants and humans are comparable, but proportionally smaller in elephant. A possible carotid rete was observed at the base of the brain. Brain size appears to be related to body size, ecology, sociality, and longevity. Elephant adult brain averages 4783 g, the largest among living and extinct terrestrial mammals; elephant neonate brain averages 50% of its adult brain weight (25% in humans). Cerebellar weight averages 18.6% of brain (1.8 times larger than in humans). During evolution, encephalization quotient has increased by 10-fold (0.2 for extinct Moeritherium, approximately 2.0 for extant elephants). We present 20 figures of the elephant brain, 16 of which contain new material. Similarities between human and elephant brains could be due to convergent evolution; both display mosaic characters and are highly derived mammals. Humans and elephants use and make tools and show a range of complex learning skills and behaviors. In elephants, the large amount of cerebral cortex, especially in the temporal lobe, and the well-developed olfactory system, structures associated with complex learning and behavioral functions in humans, may provide the substrate for such complex skills and behavior.

  20. Taxonomic revision of the Elephant Pupinid snail genus Pollicaria Gould, 1856 (Prosobranchia, Pupinidae

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    Bangon Kongim

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The status of species currently assigned to the Southeast Asian Elephant Pupinid snail genus Pollicaria Gould, 1856 is reassessed. Shell, radular and reproductive morphology are investigated and analysed with reference to karyotype patterns previously reported and to distribution patterns among the species. Six previously described species are recognised: P. gravida (Benson, 1856, P. myersii (Haines, 1855, P. mouhoti (Pfeiffer, 1862, P. elephas (Morgan, 1885, P. crossei (Dautzenberg & d’Hamonville, 1887 and P. rochebruni (Mabille, 1887. A new subspecies, P. mouhoti monochroma ssp. n., is proposed and a dichotomous key to species is provided.

  1. CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: An overview of Asian Elephants in the Western Ghats, southern India: implications for the conservation of Western Ghats ecology

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    N. Baskaran

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The Western Ghats region is a global biodiversity hotspot and the source of all the major rivers of peninsular India. The conservation of this region is important for the biodiversity it harbours, and for ecological functions that include climate stability, erosion control, clean water and air, which are essential to safeguard economic growth, social stability and quality of life for the people of peninsular India. Possessing a unique diversity in topography, climate, vegetation, faunal communities, endemism and human communities, the Western Ghats is also known for its spectacular assemblage of larger mammals, including 25% of the global population of Asian Elephants. There are four major landscapes in the Western Ghats: (1 Uttara Kannada, (2 Brahmagiri-Nilgiris, (3 Anamalai-Nelliyampathy-High Range, and (4 Periyar-Agasthyamalai, spread across 30,000km2, harbouring a minimum 10,000 elephants in six different populations with signs of an increasing trend in some populations. The second landscape (Brahmagiri-Nilgiris with over 50% of the Ghats elephant population, along with its contiguity to the Eastern Ghats elephant landscape, forms the single largest global population of Asian Elephants. However, major threats to the long-term conservation of the elephant include further fragmentation of habitat, continued poaching of bulls for ivory, and escalation in human-elephant conflicts resulting in public antagonism toward the species. The goals of management should thus be to: (1 consolidate habitats and preserve corridors to avoid further fragmentation; (2 take steps through integrated land use planning at the landscape level to reduce human-elephant conflicts; and (3 build up a demographically and genetically viable elephant population by protecting the tusked males from ivory poaching. Being a wide-ranging umbrella species, ensuring the long-term conservation of Asian Elephants in the Ghats implies protecting its biodiversity and ecological

  2. Elephant Management in North American Zoos: Environmental Enrichment, Feeding, Exercise, and Training.

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    Brian J Greco

    Full Text Available The management of African (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus elephants in zoos involves a range of practices including feeding, exercise, training, and environmental enrichment. These practices are necessary to meet the elephants' nutritional, healthcare, and husbandry needs. However, these practices are not standardized, resulting in likely variation among zoos as well as differences in the way they are applied to individual elephants within a zoo. To characterize elephant management in North America, we collected survey data from zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, developed 26 variables, generated population level descriptive statistics, and analyzed them to identify differences attributable to sex and species. Sixty-seven zoos submitted surveys describing the management of 224 elephants and the training experiences of 227 elephants. Asian elephants spent more time managed (defined as interacting directly with staff than Africans (mean time managed: Asians = 56.9%; Africans = 48.6%; p<0.001, and managed time increased by 20.2% for every year of age for both species. Enrichment, feeding, and exercise programs were evaluated using diversity indices, with mean scores across zoos in the midrange for these measures. There were an average of 7.2 feedings every 24-hour period, with only 1.2 occurring during the nighttime. Feeding schedules were predictable at 47.5% of zoos. We also calculated the relative use of rewarding and aversive techniques employed during training interactions. The population median was seven on a scale from one (representing only aversive stimuli to nine (representing only rewarding stimuli. The results of our study provide essential information for understanding management variation that could be relevant to welfare. Furthermore, the variables we created have been used in subsequent elephant welfare analyses.

  3. Reproductive Health Assessment of Female Elephants in North American Zoos and Association of Husbandry Practices with Reproductive Dysfunction in African Elephants (Loxodonta africana.

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    Janine L Brown

    Full Text Available As part of a multi-institutional study of zoo elephant welfare, we evaluated female elephants managed by zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and applied epidemiological methods to determine what factors in the zoo environment are associated with reproductive problems, including ovarian acyclicity and hyperprolactinemia. Bi-weekly blood samples were collected from 95 African (Loxodonta africana and 75 Asian (Elephas maximus (8-55 years of age elephants over a 12-month period for analysis of serum progestogens and prolactin. Females were categorized as normal cycling (regular 13- to 17-week cycles, irregular cycling (cycles longer or shorter than normal or acyclic (baseline progestogens, <0.1 ng/ml throughout, and having Low/Normal (<14 or 18 ng/ml or High (≥14 or 18 ng/ml prolactin for Asian and African elephants, respectively. Rates of normal cycling, acyclicity and irregular cycling were 73.2, 22.5 and 4.2% for Asian, and 48.4, 37.9 and 13.7% for African elephants, respectively, all of which differed between species (P < 0.05. For African elephants, univariate assessment found that social isolation decreased and higher enrichment diversity increased the chance a female would cycle normally. The strongest multi-variable models included Age (positive and Enrichment Diversity (negative as important factors of acyclicity among African elephants. The Asian elephant data set was not robust enough to support multi-variable analyses of cyclicity status. Additionally, only 3% of Asian elephants were found to be hyperprolactinemic as compared to 28% of Africans, so predictive analyses of prolactin status were conducted on African elephants only. The strongest multi-variable model included Age (positive, Enrichment Diversity (negative, Alternate Feeding Methods (negative and Social Group Contact (positive as predictors of hyperprolactinemia. In summary, the incidence of ovarian cycle problems and hyperprolactinemia predominantly

  4. Reproductive Health Assessment of Female Elephants in North American Zoos and Association of Husbandry Practices with Reproductive Dysfunction in African Elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Janine L; Paris, Stephen; Prado-Oviedo, Natalia A; Meehan, Cheryl L; Hogan, Jennifer N; Morfeld, Kari A; Carlstead, Kathy

    2016-01-01

    As part of a multi-institutional study of zoo elephant welfare, we evaluated female elephants managed by zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and applied epidemiological methods to determine what factors in the zoo environment are associated with reproductive problems, including ovarian acyclicity and hyperprolactinemia. Bi-weekly blood samples were collected from 95 African (Loxodonta africana) and 75 Asian (Elephas maximus) (8-55 years of age) elephants over a 12-month period for analysis of serum progestogens and prolactin. Females were categorized as normal cycling (regular 13- to 17-week cycles), irregular cycling (cycles longer or shorter than normal) or acyclic (baseline progestogens, <0.1 ng/ml throughout), and having Low/Normal (<14 or 18 ng/ml) or High (≥14 or 18 ng/ml) prolactin for Asian and African elephants, respectively. Rates of normal cycling, acyclicity and irregular cycling were 73.2, 22.5 and 4.2% for Asian, and 48.4, 37.9 and 13.7% for African elephants, respectively, all of which differed between species (P < 0.05). For African elephants, univariate assessment found that social isolation decreased and higher enrichment diversity increased the chance a female would cycle normally. The strongest multi-variable models included Age (positive) and Enrichment Diversity (negative) as important factors of acyclicity among African elephants. The Asian elephant data set was not robust enough to support multi-variable analyses of cyclicity status. Additionally, only 3% of Asian elephants were found to be hyperprolactinemic as compared to 28% of Africans, so predictive analyses of prolactin status were conducted on African elephants only. The strongest multi-variable model included Age (positive), Enrichment Diversity (negative), Alternate Feeding Methods (negative) and Social Group Contact (positive) as predictors of hyperprolactinemia. In summary, the incidence of ovarian cycle problems and hyperprolactinemia predominantly affects

  5. Recumbence Behavior in Zoo Elephants: Determination of Patterns and Frequency of Recumbent Rest and Associated Environmental and Social Factors.

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    Matthew R Holdgate

    Full Text Available Resting behaviors are an essential component of animal welfare but have received little attention in zoological research. African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana and Asian elephant (Elephas maximus rest includes recumbent postures, but no large-scale investigation of African and Asian zoo elephant recumbence has been previously conducted. We used anklets equipped with accelerometers to measure recumbence in 72 adult female African (n = 44 and Asian (n = 28 elephants housed in 40 North American zoos. We collected 344 days of data and determined associations between recumbence and social, housing, management, and demographic factors. African elephants were recumbent less (2.1 hours/day, S.D. = 1.1 than Asian elephants (3.2 hours/day, S.D. = 1.5; P < 0.001. Nearly one-third of elephants were non-recumbent on at least one night, suggesting this is a common behavior. Multi-variable regression models for each species showed that substrate, space, and social variables had the strongest associations with recumbence. In the African model, elephants who spent any amount of time housed on all-hard substrate were recumbent 0.6 hours less per day than those who were never on all-hard substrate, and elephants who experienced an additional acre of outdoor space at night increased their recumbence by 0.48 hours per day. In the Asian model, elephants who spent any amount of time housed on all-soft substrate were recumbent 1.1 hours more per day more than those who were never on all-soft substrate, and elephants who spent any amount of time housed alone were recumbent 0.77 hours more per day than elephants who were never housed alone. Our results draw attention to the significant interspecific difference in the amount of recumbent rest and in the factors affecting recumbence; however, in both species, the influence of flooring substrate is notably important to recumbent rest, and by extension, zoo elephant welfare.

  6. Recumbence Behavior in Zoo Elephants: Determination of Patterns and Frequency of Recumbent Rest and Associated Environmental and Social Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holdgate, Matthew R.; Meehan, Cheryl L.; Hogan, Jennifer N.; Miller, Lance J.; Rushen, Jeff; de Passillé, Anne Marie; Soltis, Joseph; Andrews, Jeff; Shepherdson, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Resting behaviors are an essential component of animal welfare but have received little attention in zoological research. African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) and Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) rest includes recumbent postures, but no large-scale investigation of African and Asian zoo elephant recumbence has been previously conducted. We used anklets equipped with accelerometers to measure recumbence in 72 adult female African (n = 44) and Asian (n = 28) elephants housed in 40 North American zoos. We collected 344 days of data and determined associations between recumbence and social, housing, management, and demographic factors. African elephants were recumbent less (2.1 hours/day, S.D. = 1.1) than Asian elephants (3.2 hours/day, S.D. = 1.5; P < 0.001). Nearly one-third of elephants were non-recumbent on at least one night, suggesting this is a common behavior. Multi-variable regression models for each species showed that substrate, space, and social variables had the strongest associations with recumbence. In the African model, elephants who spent any amount of time housed on all-hard substrate were recumbent 0.6 hours less per day than those who were never on all-hard substrate, and elephants who experienced an additional acre of outdoor space at night increased their recumbence by 0.48 hours per day. In the Asian model, elephants who spent any amount of time housed on all-soft substrate were recumbent 1.1 hours more per day more than those who were never on all-soft substrate, and elephants who spent any amount of time housed alone were recumbent 0.77 hours more per day than elephants who were never housed alone. Our results draw attention to the significant interspecific difference in the amount of recumbent rest and in the factors affecting recumbence; however, in both species, the influence of flooring substrate is notably important to recumbent rest, and by extension, zoo elephant welfare. PMID:27414809

  7. Elephant Management in North American Zoos: Environmental Enrichment, Feeding, Exercise, and Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greco, Brian J.; Meehan, Cheryl L.; Miller, Lance J.; Shepherdson, David J.; Morfeld, Kari A.; Andrews, Jeff; Baker, Anne M.; Carlstead, Kathy; Mench, Joy A.

    2016-01-01

    The management of African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants in zoos involves a range of practices including feeding, exercise, training, and environmental enrichment. These practices are necessary to meet the elephants’ nutritional, healthcare, and husbandry needs. However, these practices are not standardized, resulting in likely variation among zoos as well as differences in the way they are applied to individual elephants within a zoo. To characterize elephant management in North America, we collected survey data from zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, developed 26 variables, generated population level descriptive statistics, and analyzed them to identify differences attributable to sex and species. Sixty-seven zoos submitted surveys describing the management of 224 elephants and the training experiences of 227 elephants. Asian elephants spent more time managed (defined as interacting directly with staff) than Africans (mean time managed: Asians = 56.9%; Africans = 48.6%; p<0.001), and managed time increased by 20.2% for every year of age for both species. Enrichment, feeding, and exercise programs were evaluated using diversity indices, with mean scores across zoos in the midrange for these measures. There were an average of 7.2 feedings every 24-hour period, with only 1.2 occurring during the nighttime. Feeding schedules were predictable at 47.5% of zoos. We also calculated the relative use of rewarding and aversive techniques employed during training interactions. The population median was seven on a scale from one (representing only aversive stimuli) to nine (representing only rewarding stimuli). The results of our study provide essential information for understanding management variation that could be relevant to welfare. Furthermore, the variables we created have been used in subsequent elephant welfare analyses. PMID:27414654

  8. How much Dillenia indica seed predation occurs from Asian elephant dung?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekar, Nitin; Giam, Xingli; Sharma, Netra Prasad; Sukumar, Raman

    2016-01-01

    Elephants are thought to be effective seed dispersers, but research on whether elephant dung effectively protects seeds from seed predation is lacking. Quantifying rates of seed predation from elephant dung will facilitate comparisons between elephants and alternative dispersers, helping us understand the functional role of megaherbivores in ecosystems. We conducted an experiment to quantify the predation of Dillenia indica seeds from elephant dung in Buxa Reserve, India from December 2012 to April 2013. Using dung boluses from the same dung pile, we compared the number of seeds in boluses that are a) opened immediately upon detection (control boluses), b) made available only to small seed predators (elephant dung between the time of defecation and the median germination date for D. indica. Exposure to larger seed predators and secondary dispersers did not lead to a significant additional reduction in the number of seeds per dung bolus. Our findings suggest that post-dispersal seed predation by small insects (elephants as dispersers of D. indica in a tropical moist forest habitat.

  9. Skeletal pathology and variable anatomy in elephant feet assessed using computed tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, Jonathon J.I.; Warren-Smith, Chris; Hutchinson, John R.; Weller, Renate

    2017-01-01

    Foot problems are a major cause of morbidity and mortality in elephants, but are underreported due to difficulties in diagnosis, particularly of conditions affecting the bones and internal structures. Here we evaluate post-mortem computer tomographic (CT) scans of 52 feet from 21 elephants (seven African Loxodonta africana and 14 Asian Elephas maximus), describing both pathology and variant anatomy (including the appearance of phalangeal and sesamoid bones) that could be mistaken for disease. We found all the elephants in our study to have pathology of some type in at least one foot. The most common pathological changes observed were bone remodelling, enthesopathy, osseous cyst-like lesions, and osteoarthritis, with soft tissue mineralisation, osteitis, infectious osteoarthriti, subluxation, fracture and enostoses observed less frequently. Most feet had multiple categories of pathological change (81% with two or more diagnoses, versus 10% with a single diagnosis, and 9% without significant pathology). Much of the pathological change was focused over the middle/lateral digits, which bear most weight and experience high peak pressures during walking. We found remodelling and osteoarthritis to be correlated with increasing age, more enthesopathy in Asian elephants, and more cyst-like lesions in females. We also observed multipartite, missing and misshapen phalanges as common and apparently incidental findings. The proximal (paired) sesamoids can appear fused or absent, and the predigits (radial/tibial sesamoids) can be variably ossified, though are significantly more ossified in Asian elephants. Our study reinforces the need for regular examination and radiography of elephant feet to monitor for pathology and as a tool for improving welfare. PMID:28123909

  10. Skeletal pathology and variable anatomy in elephant feet assessed using computed tomography

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie Regnault

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Foot problems are a major cause of morbidity and mortality in elephants, but are underreported due to difficulties in diagnosis, particularly of conditions affecting the bones and internal structures. Here we evaluate post-mortem computer tomographic (CT scans of 52 feet from 21 elephants (seven African Loxodonta africana and 14 Asian Elephas maximus, describing both pathology and variant anatomy (including the appearance of phalangeal and sesamoid bones that could be mistaken for disease. We found all the elephants in our study to have pathology of some type in at least one foot. The most common pathological changes observed were bone remodelling, enthesopathy, osseous cyst-like lesions, and osteoarthritis, with soft tissue mineralisation, osteitis, infectious osteoarthriti, subluxation, fracture and enostoses observed less frequently. Most feet had multiple categories of pathological change (81% with two or more diagnoses, versus 10% with a single diagnosis, and 9% without significant pathology. Much of the pathological change was focused over the middle/lateral digits, which bear most weight and experience high peak pressures during walking. We found remodelling and osteoarthritis to be correlated with increasing age, more enthesopathy in Asian elephants, and more cyst-like lesions in females. We also observed multipartite, missing and misshapen phalanges as common and apparently incidental findings. The proximal (paired sesamoids can appear fused or absent, and the predigits (radial/tibial sesamoids can be variably ossified, though are significantly more ossified in Asian elephants. Our study reinforces the need for regular examination and radiography of elephant feet to monitor for pathology and as a tool for improving welfare.

  11. Highly Accurate Antibody Assays for Early and Rapid Detection of Tuberculosis in African and Asian Elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuberculosis (TB) in elephants is a re-emerging zoonotic disease caused primarily by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Current methods for screening and diagnosis rely on trunk wash culture, which has serious limitations due to low test sensitivity, slow turn-around time, and variable sample quality. Inn...

  12. Assisted reproduction in female rhinoceros and elephants--current status and future perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermes, R; Göritz, F; Streich, Wj; Hildebrandt, Tb

    2007-09-01

    Over the last few decades, rhinoceroses and elephants became important icons in the saga of wildlife conservation. Recent surveys estimate the wild Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephant populations to be, at most, 50 250 and 637 600 respectively. For the five rhinoceros species, black (Diceros bicornis), white (Ceratotherium simum), Indian (Rhinoceros unicornis), Javan (Rhinoceros sondaicus) and Sumatran rhinoceros (Dicerorhinus Sumatrensis), the population estimates of 3610, 11 330, 2400, 60 and 300, respectively, are of even greater concern. Protected against habitat loss, poaching and left undisturbed, rhinoceros and elephants reproduce well in the wild. But small and decreasing populations make successful captive management of these taxa increasingly important. In captivity, however, most populations face possible 'extinction' because of historically poor reproductive performance. From the first descriptions of the reproductive anatomy and the oestrous cycle (Laws 1969; Kassam and Lasley 1981; Balke et al. 1988a,b; Plotka et al. 1988; Godfrey et al. 1991) to the present use of advanced assisted reproduction technologies, researchers have strive to understand the function and dysfunction of the reproductive biology of these charismatic species. This paper reviewed the current knowledge on rhinoceros and elephant reproduction biology, reproductive cycle, gestation, dystocia, reproductive pathology, oestrous induction and artificial insemination, sperm sexing, IVF and contraception, and how this knowledge is or might be used to aid species conservation for maximal reproductive efficiency and enhancement of genetic management.

  13. Elephas maximus Damage Survey and Countermeasures in Mengla Nature Reserve%勐腊保护区亚洲象为害现状调查分析与对策

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    宗建坤; 郭贤明; 王兰新

    2013-01-01

    From 2004 to 2012 , a total of 31 villages damaged by Elephas maximus in varying degrees in Mengla nature reserve , in which 16 villages have been damaged only in one year , accounted for 51.6%of the total number of damaged villages , five villages have been damaged more than 6 years, accounted for 16.1%.Elephas maximus damage have a certain relationship with villages density , Asian elephants damage are small relatively in large distribution density of villages , but are bigger in small distribution density of villages.Rice, corn, sugar cane and banana crops are the main targets of Elephas maximus damage.Meanwhile Elephas maximus also caused a significant loss on rubber , pepper and other plants for its activities and other reasons .In order to effectively alleviate the damage caused by Elephas maxi-mus, countermeasures to complete elephant habitat protection and restoration promote industrial restructu -ring and establish warning and forecasting systems and so on have been put forward .%2004~2012年,勐腊子保护区内共有31个村寨受到亚洲象不同程度的为害,其中仅1年受到为害的有16个村寨,占总为害村数的51.6%,受到6年以上为害的有5个村寨,占16.1%。亚洲象的为害与村寨的分布密度有一定的关系,村寨分布密度大的区域亚洲象为害相对较小,分布密度小的区域为害较大。稻谷、玉米、甘蔗和香蕉等作物是亚洲象喜食的食物,是亚洲象的主要为害对象。亚洲象虽然不直接取食橡胶、辣椒等植物,但其在活动过程中由于踩踏等原因也造成了这些植物大量损失。为了有效缓解亚洲象的为害,提出做好栖息地的保护与恢复、促进产业结构调整和建立预警预报系统等建议。

  14. Elephas antiquus (Proboscidea, Mammalia en el Pleistoceno medio de Ciempozuelos (Madrid

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    Mazo, A. V.

    1995-04-01

    Full Text Available A mandible of a young elephant found at Ciempozuelos (Madrid is identified as Elephas antiquus. Correlation with other paleontological sites of the Madrid basin were this taxa has been recorded allow us to assing the new locality to the middle-Iate Pleistocene (Riss-Würn.Se identifica como Elephas antiquus una mandíbula juvenil de elefante encontrada en Ciempozuelos (Madrid. Las correlaciones con otros yacimientos de la cuenca de Madrid que han proporcionado el mismo taxón permiten precisar que la nueva localidad pertenece al Pleistoceno medio final (Riss-Würm.

  15. Use of handheld X-ray fluorescence as a non-invasive method to distinguish between Asian and African elephant tusks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buddhachat, Kittisak; Thitaram, Chatchote; Brown, Janine L.; Klinhom, Sarisa; Bansiddhi, Pakkanut; Penchart, Kitichaya; Ouitavon, Kanita; Sriaksorn, Khanittha; Pa-in, Chalermpol; Kanchanasaka, Budsabong; Somgird, Chaleamchat; Nganvongpanit, Korakot

    2016-04-01

    We describe the use of handheld X-ray fluorescence, for elephant tusk species identification. Asian (n = 72) and African (n = 85) elephant tusks were scanned and we utilized the species differences in elemental composition to develop a functional model differentiating between species with high precision. Spatially, the majority of measured elements (n = 26) exhibited a homogeneous distribution in cross-section, but a more heterologous pattern in the longitudinal direction. Twenty-one of twenty four elements differed between Asian and African samples. Data were subjected to hierarchical cluster analysis followed by a stepwise discriminant analysis, which identified elements for the functional equation. The best equation consisted of ratios of Si, S, Cl, Ti, Mn, Ag, Sb and W, with Zr as the denominator. Next, Bayesian binary regression model analysis was conducted to predict the probability that a tusk would be of African origin. A cut-off value was established to improve discrimination. This Bayesian hybrid classification model was then validated by scanning an additional 30 Asian and 41 African tusks, which showed high accuracy (94%) and precision (95%) rates. We conclude that handheld XRF is an accurate, non-invasive method to discriminate origin of elephant tusks provides rapid results applicable to use in the field.

  16. A comparative metagenome survey of the fecal microbiota of a breast- and a plant-fed Asian elephant reveals an unexpectedly high diversity of glycoside hydrolase family enzymes.

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    Nele Ilmberger

    Full Text Available A phylogenetic and metagenomic study of elephant feces samples (derived from a three-weeks-old and a six-years-old Asian elephant was conducted in order to describe the microbiota inhabiting this large land-living animal. The microbial diversity was examined via 16S rRNA gene analysis. We generated more than 44,000 GS-FLX+454 reads for each animal. For the baby elephant, 380 operational taxonomic units (OTUs were identified at 97% sequence identity level; in the six-years-old animal, close to 3,000 OTUs were identified, suggesting high microbial diversity in the older animal. In both animals most OTUs belonged to Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes. Additionally, for the baby elephant a high number of Proteobacteria was detected. A metagenomic sequencing approach using Illumina technology resulted in the generation of 1.1 Gbp assembled DNA in contigs with a maximum size of 0.6 Mbp. A KEGG pathway analysis suggested high metabolic diversity regarding the use of polymers and aromatic and non-aromatic compounds. In line with the high phylogenetic diversity, a surprising and not previously described biodiversity of glycoside hydrolase (GH genes was found. Enzymes of 84 GH families were detected. Polysaccharide utilization loci (PULs, which are found in Bacteroidetes, were highly abundant in the dataset; some of these comprised cellulase genes. Furthermore the highest coverage for GH5 and GH9 family enzymes was detected for Bacteroidetes, suggesting that bacteria of this phylum are mainly responsible for the degradation of cellulose in the Asian elephant. Altogether, this study delivers insight into the biomass conversion by one of the largest plant-fed and land-living animals.

  17. Assessment of Flooring Renovations on African Elephant (Loxodonta africana) Behavior and Glucocorticoid Response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyle, Sarah A; Roberts, Beth; Pope, Brittany M; Blake, Margaret R; Leavelle, Stephen E; Marshall, Jennifer J; Smith, Andrew; Hadicke, Amanda; Falcone, Josephine F; Knott, Katrina; Kouba, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    Captive African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephants can experience foot pathologies and arthritis. As a preventative measure against these pathologies and to alleviate the potential discomfort due to concrete substrates, some zoological institutions have renovated elephant housing to increase the amount of natural or shock-absorbent substrates. The objective of this study was to compare behavioral (diurnal and nocturnal) and glucorticoid (e.g., serum cortisol) responses of three female African elephants before, during, and after renovation to their indoor housing floor to assess whether renovations had short-term effects on the elephants' behavior and stress physiology. Behavioral data were collected using scan-sampling methods, and activity budgets were constructed for each of the three elephants. In addition, the duration of all lying rest activities were recorded. Weekly serum cortisol concentrations were determined with enzyme immunoassay (EIA). Overall, eating was the most prevalent behavior exhibited outdoors during the day, while resting (either in a lying or standing position) were most common during the indoor, nocturnal periods. Although variation existed among the three elephants, all three females spent significantly more time walking and less time eating during the day after the completion of the renovations. The extent to which the three elephants exhibited nocturnal lying rest behavior varied among the elephants, with the oldest elephant exhibiting the least amount (an average of 13.2 ± 2.8% of the nightly behavioral scans) compared to the two younger elephants (an average of 34.5 ± 2.1% and 56.6 ± 2.8% of the nightly behavioral scans). There was a significant increase in lying rest behavior for one elephant and standing rest for a second elephant following renovations. Baseline cortisol concentrations prior to renovations were 3.0 ± 0.4 ng/ml, 4.5 ± 0.5 ng/ml, and 4.9 ± 0.5 ng/ml for the three elephants. Cortisol

  18. Assessment of Flooring Renovations on African Elephant (Loxodonta africana Behavior and Glucocorticoid Response.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah A Boyle

    Full Text Available Captive African (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus elephants can experience foot pathologies and arthritis. As a preventative measure against these pathologies and to alleviate the potential discomfort due to concrete substrates, some zoological institutions have renovated elephant housing to increase the amount of natural or shock-absorbent substrates. The objective of this study was to compare behavioral (diurnal and nocturnal and glucorticoid (e.g., serum cortisol responses of three female African elephants before, during, and after renovation to their indoor housing floor to assess whether renovations had short-term effects on the elephants' behavior and stress physiology. Behavioral data were collected using scan-sampling methods, and activity budgets were constructed for each of the three elephants. In addition, the duration of all lying rest activities were recorded. Weekly serum cortisol concentrations were determined with enzyme immunoassay (EIA. Overall, eating was the most prevalent behavior exhibited outdoors during the day, while resting (either in a lying or standing position were most common during the indoor, nocturnal periods. Although variation existed among the three elephants, all three females spent significantly more time walking and less time eating during the day after the completion of the renovations. The extent to which the three elephants exhibited nocturnal lying rest behavior varied among the elephants, with the oldest elephant exhibiting the least amount (an average of 13.2 ± 2.8% of the nightly behavioral scans compared to the two younger elephants (an average of 34.5 ± 2.1% and 56.6 ± 2.8% of the nightly behavioral scans. There was a significant increase in lying rest behavior for one elephant and standing rest for a second elephant following renovations. Baseline cortisol concentrations prior to renovations were 3.0 ± 0.4 ng/ml, 4.5 ± 0.5 ng/ml, and 4.9 ± 0.5 ng/ml for the three elephants

  19. Predicting Hotspots of Human-Elephant Conflict to Inform Mitigation Strategies in Xishuangbanna, Southwest China

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    Research on the spatial patterns of human-wildlife conflict is fundamental to understanding the mechanisms underlying it and to identifying opportunities for mitigation. In the state of Xishuangbanna, containing China’s largest tropical forest, an imbalance between nature conservation and economic development has led to increasing conflicts between humans and Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), as both elephant numbers and conversion of habitable land to rubber plantations have increased over the last several decades. We analyzed government data on the compensation costs of elephant-caused damage in Xishuangbanna between 2008 and 2012 to understand the spatial and temporal patterns of conflict, in terms of their occurrence, frequency and distribution. More than 18,261 incidents were reported, including episodes involving damage to rubber trees (n = 10,999), damage to crops such as paddy, upland rice, corn, bananas and sugarcane (n = 11,020), property loss (n = 689) and attacks on humans (n = 19). The conflict data reconfirmed the presence of elephants in areas which have lacked records since the late 1990s. Zero Altered Negative Binomial models revealed that the risk of damage to crops and plantations increased with proximity to protected areas, increasing distance from roads, and lower settlement density. The patterns were constant across seasons and types of crop damaged. Damage to rubber trees was essentially incidental as elephants searched for crops to eat. A predictive map of risks revealed hotspots of conflict within and around protected areas, the last refuges for elephants in the region, and along habitat corridors connecting them. Additionally, we analyzed how mitigation efforts can best diminish the risk of conflict while minimizing financial costs and adverse biological impacts. Our analytical approach can be adopted, adjusted and expanded to other areas with historical records of human-wildlife conflict. PMID:27631976

  20. Predicting Hotspots of Human-Elephant Conflict to Inform Mitigation Strategies in Xishuangbanna, Southwest China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ying; Marino, Jorgelina; Chen, Yong; Tao, Qing; Sullivan, Casey D; Shi, Kun; Macdonald, David W

    2016-01-01

    Research on the spatial patterns of human-wildlife conflict is fundamental to understanding the mechanisms underlying it and to identifying opportunities for mitigation. In the state of Xishuangbanna, containing China's largest tropical forest, an imbalance between nature conservation and economic development has led to increasing conflicts between humans and Asian elephants (Elephas maximus), as both elephant numbers and conversion of habitable land to rubber plantations have increased over the last several decades. We analyzed government data on the compensation costs of elephant-caused damage in Xishuangbanna between 2008 and 2012 to understand the spatial and temporal patterns of conflict, in terms of their occurrence, frequency and distribution. More than 18,261 incidents were reported, including episodes involving damage to rubber trees (n = 10,999), damage to crops such as paddy, upland rice, corn, bananas and sugarcane (n = 11,020), property loss (n = 689) and attacks on humans (n = 19). The conflict data reconfirmed the presence of elephants in areas which have lacked records since the late 1990s. Zero Altered Negative Binomial models revealed that the risk of damage to crops and plantations increased with proximity to protected areas, increasing distance from roads, and lower settlement density. The patterns were constant across seasons and types of crop damaged. Damage to rubber trees was essentially incidental as elephants searched for crops to eat. A predictive map of risks revealed hotspots of conflict within and around protected areas, the last refuges for elephants in the region, and along habitat corridors connecting them. Additionally, we analyzed how mitigation efforts can best diminish the risk of conflict while minimizing financial costs and adverse biological impacts. Our analytical approach can be adopted, adjusted and expanded to other areas with historical records of human-wildlife conflict.

  1. Determining Connections between the Daily Lives of Zoo Elephants and Their Welfare: An Epidemiological Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meehan, Cheryl L; Mench, Joy A; Carlstead, Kathy; Hogan, Jennifer N

    2016-01-01

    Concerns about animal welfare increasingly shape people's views about the acceptability of keeping animals for food production, biomedical research, and in zoos. The field of animal welfare science has developed over the past 50 years as a method of investigating these concerns via research that assesses how living in human-controlled environments influences the behavior, health and affective states of animals. Initially, animal welfare research focused on animals in agricultural settings, but the field has expanded to zoos because good animal welfare is essential to zoos' mission of promoting connections between animals and visitors and raising awareness of conservation issues. A particular challenge for zoos is ensuring good animal welfare for long-lived, highly social species like elephants. Our main goal in conducting an epidemiological study of African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephant welfare in 68 accredited North American zoos was to understand the prevalence of welfare indicators in the population and determine the aspects of an elephant's zoo environment, social life and management that are most important to prevent and reduce a variety of welfare problems. In this overview, we provide a summary of the findings of the nine papers in the collection titled: Epidemiological Investigations of North American Zoo Elephant Welfare with a focus on the life history, social, housing, and management factors found to be associated with particular aspects of elephant welfare, including the performance of abnormal behavior, foot and joint problems, recumbence, walking rates, and reproductive health issues. Social and management factors were found to be important for multiple indicators of welfare, while exhibit space was found to be less influential than expected. This body of work results from the largest prospective zoo-based animal welfare study conducted to date and sets in motion the process of using science-based welfare benchmarks to

  2. Determining Connections between the Daily Lives of Zoo Elephants and Their Welfare: An Epidemiological Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheryl L Meehan

    Full Text Available Concerns about animal welfare increasingly shape people's views about the acceptability of keeping animals for food production, biomedical research, and in zoos. The field of animal welfare science has developed over the past 50 years as a method of investigating these concerns via research that assesses how living in human-controlled environments influences the behavior, health and affective states of animals. Initially, animal welfare research focused on animals in agricultural settings, but the field has expanded to zoos because good animal welfare is essential to zoos' mission of promoting connections between animals and visitors and raising awareness of conservation issues. A particular challenge for zoos is ensuring good animal welfare for long-lived, highly social species like elephants. Our main goal in conducting an epidemiological study of African (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus elephant welfare in 68 accredited North American zoos was to understand the prevalence of welfare indicators in the population and determine the aspects of an elephant's zoo environment, social life and management that are most important to prevent and reduce a variety of welfare problems. In this overview, we provide a summary of the findings of the nine papers in the collection titled: Epidemiological Investigations of North American Zoo Elephant Welfare with a focus on the life history, social, housing, and management factors found to be associated with particular aspects of elephant welfare, including the performance of abnormal behavior, foot and joint problems, recumbence, walking rates, and reproductive health issues. Social and management factors were found to be important for multiple indicators of welfare, while exhibit space was found to be less influential than expected. This body of work results from the largest prospective zoo-based animal welfare study conducted to date and sets in motion the process of using science-based welfare

  3. Determining Connections between the Daily Lives of Zoo Elephants and Their Welfare: An Epidemiological Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meehan, Cheryl L.; Mench, Joy A.; Carlstead, Kathy; Hogan, Jennifer N.

    2016-01-01

    Concerns about animal welfare increasingly shape people’s views about the acceptability of keeping animals for food production, biomedical research, and in zoos. The field of animal welfare science has developed over the past 50 years as a method of investigating these concerns via research that assesses how living in human-controlled environments influences the behavior, health and affective states of animals. Initially, animal welfare research focused on animals in agricultural settings, but the field has expanded to zoos because good animal welfare is essential to zoos’ mission of promoting connections between animals and visitors and raising awareness of conservation issues. A particular challenge for zoos is ensuring good animal welfare for long-lived, highly social species like elephants. Our main goal in conducting an epidemiological study of African (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) elephant welfare in 68 accredited North American zoos was to understand the prevalence of welfare indicators in the population and determine the aspects of an elephant’s zoo environment, social life and management that are most important to prevent and reduce a variety of welfare problems. In this overview, we provide a summary of the findings of the nine papers in the collection titled: Epidemiological Investigations of North American Zoo Elephant Welfare with a focus on the life history, social, housing, and management factors found to be associated with particular aspects of elephant welfare, including the performance of abnormal behavior, foot and joint problems, recumbence, walking rates, and reproductive health issues. Social and management factors were found to be important for multiple indicators of welfare, while exhibit space was found to be less influential than expected. This body of work results from the largest prospective zoo-based animal welfare study conducted to date and sets in motion the process of using science-based welfare benchmarks

  4. A note on the presence of the Elephant Louse Haematomyzus elephantis piaget (Mallophaga: Rhynchophthirina in the Kruger National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L.E.O Braack

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available First described in 1869, this rather unusual insect has been found to be a common ectoparasite on the Indian elephant (Elephas maximus, and has been collected in low numbers from the African elephant (Loxodonta africana in nearly all of sub-saharan Africa (Ledger 1979, The arthropod parasites of vertebrates in Africa south of the Sahara (Ethiopian Region Vol. IV.

  5. Testosterone and dihydrotestosterone concentrations in elephant serum and temporal gland secretions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmussen, L E; Buss, I O; Hess, D L; Schmidt, M J

    1984-03-01

    Serum and temporal gland secretions (TGS) were obtained from mature wild African (Loxodonta africana) and captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus). Samples were obtained from five cows and eight bulls culled for management purposes in Kruger National Park, South Africa, and from four females and two males residing at the Washington Park Zoo, Portland, Oregon. Our purpose was to describe the levels of the androgens, testosterone (T), and dihydrotestosterone (DHT), and to correlate these observations with sex, species and behavioral status. Male-female differences in serum T were pronounced in the Asian species, whereas male and female concentrations overlapped in the African elephant serum. Serum T concentrations in African females were greater than in Asian females. Serum DHT reflected T levels, except that the striking elevation of testosterone in Asian bulls during musth was not paralleled by equal increases in DHT levels. A species difference observed among males was higher serum T levels in nonmusth Asian bulls (1.84-5.35 ng/ml) compared to the levels in African bulls (0.38-0.68 ng/ml), except for one dominant African bull (6.64 ng/ml). This single African value was still considerably lower than the serum T values of the Asian males during musth. These musth values were the highest serum androgen concentrations: T was between 19 and 40 ng/ml (average 26.10 ng/ml). The TSG values of T and DHT were much higher than serum levels except in the Asian female. T/DHT ratios in TGS were more similar than in serum. One dominant African bull had a T TGS value of 78 ng/ml, which was much higher than the rest of the African males or females, but considerably lower than as Asian bull in musth (547 ng/ml). It seems apparent that a change in androgen status as reflected in serum and TGS levels of T and DHT precedes or is concomitant with overt alteration in behavior in the Asian male. The temporal gland appears to actively concentrate androgens in both African males and

  6. Elephant Flyswatters: The Right Tool for the Job

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    诸葛勤

    1995-01-01

    Human beings use swatters to get rid of pesky flies. Some elephants do too. A study of 15 Asian elephants that carry tourists to visit wildlife in Nepal found that the pachyderms had good reason to grasp a leafy branch

  7. A novel antigen capture ELISA for the specific detection of IgG antibodies to elephant endotheliotropic herpes virus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P. van den Doel (Petra); V.R. Prieto (Víctor Rodríguez); S.E. Van Rossum-Fikkert (Sarah E.); W. Schaftenaar (Willem); E. Latimer (Erin); L. Howard (Lauren); S. Chapman (Sarah); N. Masters (Nic); A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert); P.D. Ling (Paul D.); A. Dastjerdi (Akbar); B.E.E. Martina (Byron)

    2015-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Elephants are classified as critically endangered animals by the International Union for Conservation of Species (IUCN). Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV) poses a large threat to breeding programs of captive Asian elephants by causing fatal haemorrhagic disease. EE

  8. Evaluation of DNA extraction techniques for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex organisms in Asian elephant trunk wash samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, Meagan K; Linke, Lyndsey; Triantis, Joni; Salman, M D; Larsen, R Scott

    2011-02-01

    Rapid and sensitive diagnostic assays for the detection of tuberculous mycobacteria in elephants are lacking. DNA extraction with PCR analysis is useful for tuberculosis screening in many species but has not been validated on elephant trunk wash samples. We estimated the analytical sensitivity and specificity of three DNA extraction methods to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex organisms in trunk wash specimens. A ZR soil microbe DNA kit (ZR) and a traditional salt and ethanol precipitation (TSEP) approach were evaluated under three different treatment conditions: heat treatment, phenol treatment, and contamination with Mycobacterium avium. A third approach, using a column filtration method, was evaluated for samples contaminated with soil. Trunk wash samples from uninfected elephants were spiked with various concentrations of M. bovis cells and subjected to the described treatment conditions prior to DNA extraction. Extracted DNA was amplified using IS6110-targeted PCR analysis. The ZR and TSEP methods detected as low as 1 to 5 M. bovis cells and 10 M. bovis cells, respectively, per 1.5 ml of trunk wash under all three conditions. Depending on the amount of soil present, the column filtration method detected as low as 5 to 50 M. bovis cells per 1.5 ml of trunk wash. Analytical specificity was assessed by DNA extraction from species of nontuberculous mycobacteria and amplification using the same PCR technique. Only M. bovis DNA was amplified, indicating 100% analytical specificity of this PCR technique. Our results indicate that these DNA extraction techniques offer promise as useful tests for detection of M. tuberculosis complex organisms in elephant trunk wash specimens.

  9. Elephant ear

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Supplements Videos & Tools Español You Are Here: Home → Medical Encyclopedia → Elephant ear URL of this page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002867.htm Elephant ear To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Elephant ear plants are indoor or outdoor plants with very large, ...

  10. Diet composition and foraging ecology of Asian elephants in Shangyong,Xishuangbanna, China%西双版纳尚勇亚洲象的食物组成与取食生态

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈进; 邓晓保; 张玲; 白智林

    2006-01-01

    于1998~2000在西双版纳国家级自然保护区尚勇子保护区的自然生境中,通过对亚洲象取食植物调查和粪便分析,了解亚洲象的食物组成与取食习性.结果显示,野外跟踪调查共记录有106种植物被亚洲象所取食,其中有83种出现在象的粪便中,这些种类分别属于:禾本科8种(10.0%)、桑科7种(9.9%)、蝶形花科4种(8.4%)、五加科3种(6.6%)、葡萄科3种(5.7%)、夹竹桃科3种(4.6%)、芭蕉科1种(4.2%)、姜科3种(3.7%)、紫金牛科3种(3.6%)、蔷薇科3种(3.6%)、大戟科5种(3.3%)、榆科2种(3.0%)、含羞草科4种(2.9%)13个植物科.根据食物中所占的比率,桑科的榕属(Ficus)、禾本科的竹类(Bambusoideae)、小果野芭蕉(Musa acuminate)和莠竹(Microstegium ciliatum)是亚洲象的主要食物资源.在觅食过程中,亚洲象取食包括乔木、藤本灌木和草本等各种生活型的植物,其中先锋种所占比率(59%)高于后续种;选择性啃食枝条的植物种类(77种)高于牧草式取食的种类(6种).亚洲象取食植物种类的月变化与月平均温度和月降雨量成负相关,旱季取食植物种类高于雨季.本研究对制定保护区野生动物管理策略,以及解决保护区周边日趋恶化的人象矛盾,具有一定的参考价值.%Diet composition and foraging ecology of Asian elephant were studied in its natural habitat in Shangyong National Natural Reserve, Xishuangbanna, China, through field observation and dung analysis, from 1998 to 2000. A total of 106 species were recorded as being eaten by Asian elephants, among them 83 species were identified in elephant's dung. Plant families that contributed a major proportion of elephant' s diet in the study area were: Gramineae (8 spp., 10.0% ), Moraceae (7 spp.,9.9 % ), Papilionaceae (4 spp., 8.4 % ), Araliaceae (3 spp., 6.6 % ), Vitaceae (3 spp., 5.7 % ), Apocynaceae ( 3 spp.,4.6 % ), Musaceae ( 1 spp., 4.2 % ), Zingiberaceae (3 spp., 3.7 % ), Myrsinaceae (3 spp., 3

  11. Bronze Elephant

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    1995-01-01

    A rare find among Shang Dynasty bronzes in China, this bronze elephant was unearthed in a hillside in Liling County, Hunan. It was probably buried by slave owners as a sacrifice to the mountains and lakes. The bronze elephant served as a wine vessel. Wine was poured into the large opening at the elephant’s back, and was served through its trunk. It is 22.8 cm tall, 26.5 cm long and weighs 2.8 kg. The body of the vessel was carved with animal motifs. The front of the trunk, for example, is carved into the shape of a phoenix with a hooked beak. A tiger is crouched on the comb of the phoenix, and a snake curls out of its beak. The base of the trunk is decorated with another snake, with its head near the mouth of the elephant. The entire trunk is decorated with scales.

  12. Earth elephant

    OpenAIRE

    2009-01-01

    The Elephant In this work, context and content informs an image that does not suffer from isolation, nor is it neutralised. The catalyst was a television news item which was about the indescrimate slaughter of elephants simply for their ivory tusks. Apart from the obvious, and very relevant, considerations of suffering and conservation it was the ultimate irrationality of this barbaric act that engaged me to do the work, as I felt that as an artist I wanted to show my concern for the plig...

  13. Fine-scale genetic structure and cryptic associations reveal evidence of kin-based sociality in the African forest elephant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie G Schuttler

    Full Text Available Spatial patterns of relatedness within animal populations are important in the evolution of mating and social systems, and have the potential to reveal information on species that are difficult to observe in the wild. This study examines the fine-scale genetic structure and connectivity of groups within African forest elephants, Loxodonta cyclotis, which are often difficult to observe due to forest habitat. We tested the hypothesis that genetic similarity will decline with increasing geographic distance, as we expect kin to be in closer proximity, using spatial autocorrelation analyses and Tau K(r tests. Associations between individuals were investigated through a non-invasive genetic capture-recapture approach using network models, and were predicted to be more extensive than the small groups found in observational studies, similar to fission-fusion sociality found in African savanna (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus species. Dung samples were collected in Lopé National Park, Gabon in 2008 and 2010 and genotyped at 10 microsatellite loci, genetically sexed, and sequenced at the mitochondrial DNA control region. We conducted analyses on samples collected at three different temporal scales: a day, within six-day sampling sessions, and within each year. Spatial autocorrelation and Tau K(r tests revealed genetic structure, but results were weak and inconsistent between sampling sessions. Positive spatial autocorrelation was found in distance classes of 0-5 km, and was strongest for the single day session. Despite weak genetic structure, individuals within groups were significantly more related to each other than to individuals between groups. Social networks revealed some components to have large, extensive groups of up to 22 individuals, and most groups were composed of individuals of the same matriline. Although fine-scale population genetic structure was weak, forest elephants are typically found in groups consisting of kin and

  14. Fine-scale genetic structure and cryptic associations reveal evidence of kin-based sociality in the African forest elephant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuttler, Stephanie G; Philbrick, Jessica A; Jeffery, Kathryn J; Eggert, Lori S

    2014-01-01

    Spatial patterns of relatedness within animal populations are important in the evolution of mating and social systems, and have the potential to reveal information on species that are difficult to observe in the wild. This study examines the fine-scale genetic structure and connectivity of groups within African forest elephants, Loxodonta cyclotis, which are often difficult to observe due to forest habitat. We tested the hypothesis that genetic similarity will decline with increasing geographic distance, as we expect kin to be in closer proximity, using spatial autocorrelation analyses and Tau K(r) tests. Associations between individuals were investigated through a non-invasive genetic capture-recapture approach using network models, and were predicted to be more extensive than the small groups found in observational studies, similar to fission-fusion sociality found in African savanna (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) species. Dung samples were collected in Lopé National Park, Gabon in 2008 and 2010 and genotyped at 10 microsatellite loci, genetically sexed, and sequenced at the mitochondrial DNA control region. We conducted analyses on samples collected at three different temporal scales: a day, within six-day sampling sessions, and within each year. Spatial autocorrelation and Tau K(r) tests revealed genetic structure, but results were weak and inconsistent between sampling sessions. Positive spatial autocorrelation was found in distance classes of 0-5 km, and was strongest for the single day session. Despite weak genetic structure, individuals within groups were significantly more related to each other than to individuals between groups. Social networks revealed some components to have large, extensive groups of up to 22 individuals, and most groups were composed of individuals of the same matriline. Although fine-scale population genetic structure was weak, forest elephants are typically found in groups consisting of kin and based on matrilines

  15. Aspects of elephant behavior, ecology, and interactions with humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connell, Caitlin Elizabeth

    This dissertation is comprised of two chapters relating to the acoustic behavior of elephants, their surrounding ecology and interactions with humans. The first chapter investigates the seismic aspects of Asian elephant (Elephus maximus) acoustic communication. The second chapter is comprised of a synthesis of two separate studies conducted on the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) in Namibia, both in Etosha National Park and the Caprivi region. The two studies were combined and published in Biological Conservation as one large study on aspects of the economic and social impacts of elephant/human conflict and experiments conducted to reduce conflict. In chapter one, seismic and acoustic data were recorded simultaneously from Asian elephants during periods of vocalizations and locomotion. Acoustic and seismic signals from rumbles were highly correlated at near and far distances and were in phase near the elephant and were out of phase at an increased distance from the elephant. Data analyses indicated that elephant generated signals associated with rumbles and "foot stomps" propagated at different velocities in the two media, the acoustic signals traveling at 309 m/s and the seismic signals at 248--264 m/s. Both types of signals had predominant frequencies in the range of 20 Hz. Seismic signal amplitudes considerably above background noise were recorded at 40 m from the generating elephants for both the rumble and the stomp. Seismic propagation models suggest that seismic waveforms from vocalizations are potentially detectable by instruments at distances of up to 16 km, and up to 32 km for locomotion generated signals. Thus, if detectable by elephants, these seismic signals could be useful for long distance communication. In chapter two, the economic impact of elephants, Loxodonta africana , and predators, particularly lions, Panthera leo, on rural agriculturists in the Kwando region of the East Caprivi, Namibia was assessed from the years 1991 to 1995. Elephants

  16. Mammoth and Elephant Phylogenetic Relationships: Mammut Americanum, the Missing Outgroup

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ludovic Orlando

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available At the morphological level, the woolly mammoth has most often been considered as the sister-species of Asian elephants, but at the DNA level, different studies have found support for proximity with African elephants. Recent reports have increased the available sequence data and apparently solved the discrepancy, finding mammoths to be most closely related to Asian elephants. However, we demonstrate here that the three competing topologies have similar likelihood, bayesian and parsimony supports. The analysis further suggests the inadequacy of using Sirenia or Hyracoidea as outgroups. We therefore argue that orthologous sequences from the extinct American mastodon will be required to defi nitively solve this long-standing question.

  17. 'Do You Ride on Elephants' and 'Never Tell Them You're German': The Experiences of British Asian and Black, and Overseas Student Teachers in Southeast England

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, Mike; Stuart, Janet S.

    2005-01-01

    In this article we report on part of a small-scale study into the experiences of 28 British-born Asian and black, and overseas student teachers, who were following both Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) and school-based routes to qualified teacher status (QTS), in Sussex and Kent. The results indicate worrying degrees of racism,…

  18. The elephant interferon gamma assay: a contribution to diagnosis of tuberculosis in elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angkawanish, T; Morar, D; van Kooten, P; Bontekoning, I; Schreuder, J; Maas, M; Wajjwalku, W; Sirimalaisuwan, A; Michel, A; Tijhaar, E; Rutten, V

    2013-11-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tb) has been shown to be the main causative agent of tuberculosis in elephants worldwide. M. tb may be transmitted from infected humans to other species including elephants and vice versa, in case of prolonged intensive contact. An accurate diagnostic approach covering all phases of the infection in elephants is required. As M. tb is an intracellular pathogen and cell-mediated immune (CMI) responses are elicited early after infection, the skin test is the CMI assay of choice in humans and cattle. However, this test is not applicable in elephants. The interferon gamma (IFN-γ) assay is considered a good alternative for the skin test in general, validated for use in cattle and humans. This study was aimed at development of an IFN-γ assay applicable for diagnosis of tuberculosis in elephants. Recombinant elephant IFN-γ (rEpIFN-γ) produced in eukaryotic cells was used to immunize mice and generate the monoclonal antibodies. Hybridomas were screened for IFN-γ-specific monoclonal antibody production and subcloned, and antibodies were isotyped and affinity purified. Western blot confirmed recognition of the rEpIFN-γ. The optimal combination of capture and detection antibodies selected was able to detect rEpIFN-γ in concentrations as low as 1 pg/ml. The assay was shown to be able to detect the native elephant IFN-γ, elicited in positive-control cultures (pokeweed mitogen (PWM), phorbol myristate acetate plus ionomycin (PMA/I)) of both Asian and African elephant whole-blood cultures (WBC). Preliminary data were generated using WBC from non-infected elephants, a M. tb infection-suspected elephant and a culture-confirmed M. tb-infected elephant. The latter showed measurable production of IFN-γ after stimulation with ESAT6/CFP10 PPDB and PPDA in concentration ranges as elicited in WBC by Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC)-specific antigens in other species. Hence, the IFN-γ assay presented potential as a diagnostic tool for the

  19. Captive elephants - an overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.S. Riddle

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Currently a significant portion of the world’s elephant population is in captivity, mainly in Asia. Elephants have a long history of captivity in both Africa and Asia, and have adapted to many environments. Today, due to evolving needs and philosophies, some changes have occurred in the use of captive elephants, and debate about their welfare and management is increasing. To address this, several countries are developing higher standards of care via policies and guidelines; unfortunately most elephant range countries do not have a national strategy concerning their captive elephant population. Challenges in elephant medicine are always present, yet there is a lack of standardized requirements for veterinary care in elephant range countries, and the ability of veterinarians to treat elephant diseases is often limited. In recent years, much has been learned about elephant physiology, biology, and communication from captive elephants, and this knowledge supports management decisions affecting both captive and wild populations. Captive elephants present important educational and fundraising opportunities in support of conservation, but these are often not fully leveraged. Future considerations include implementing changes to improve staff support and training, establishing comprehensive registration of all captive populations, and ensuring that captive management does not negatively impact wild elephant populations.

  20. Megagardeners of the forest - the role of elephants in seed dispersal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campos-Arceiz, Ahimsa; Blake, Steve

    2011-11-01

    As the largest frugivores on Earth, elephants have unique ecological properties. Found in deserts, savannahs, and forests, they are the last remnants of a diverse lineage. Among the three currently recognized forms, African forest elephants are the most frugivorous, followed by Asian and African savannah elephants, although their role as seed dispersers is variable and context-dependent. African forest elephants may consume more seeds from more species than any other taxon of large vertebrate dispersers, defecating them over long distances in viable conditions into nutrient-rich and protective dung. In short, elephants are forest gardeners. The signature of elephant dispersal is evident in the spatial distribution of trees suggesting that elephants maintain tree diversity and retain low redundancy in seed dispersal systems. Large numbers of forest elephants ranging over large areas may be essential for ecosystem function. The loss of elephants will have important negative consequences for the ecological trajectories of some plant species and whole ecological communities, yet the conservation status of forest elephants is catastrophic in Asia and rapidly becoming so in Africa due to hunting and other conflicts with people. In this paper we review the current knowledge of elephants as seed dispersers, discuss the ecological consequences of their decline, and suggest priority areas for research and conservation action.

  1. Elephants have relatively the largest cerebellum size of mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maseko, Busisiwe C; Spocter, Muhammad A; Haagensen, Mark; Manger, Paul R

    2012-04-01

    The current study used MR imaging to determine the volume of the cerebellum and its component parts in the brain of three adult male African elephants (Loxodonta africana) and compared this with published data from Asian elephants and other mammalian species including odontocete cetaceans, primates, chiropterans, insectivores, carnivores, and artiodactyls. The cerebellum of the adult elephant has a volume of ∼925 mL (average of both African and Asian species). Allometric analysis indicates that the elephant has the largest relative cerebellum size of all mammals studied to date. In addition, both odontocete cetaceans and microchiropterans appear to have large relative cerebellar sizes. The vermal and hemispheric components of the African elephant cerebellum are both large relative to other mammals of similar brain size, however, for odontocete cetaceans the vermal component is small and the hemispheric component is large. These volumetric observations are related to life-histories and anatomies of the species investigated. The current study provides context for one aspect of the elephant brain in the broader picture of mammalian brain evolution.

  2. Genomic DNA sequences from mastodon and woolly mammoth reveal deep speciation of forest and savanna elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadin Rohland

    Full Text Available To elucidate the history of living and extinct elephantids, we generated 39,763 bp of aligned nuclear DNA sequence across 375 loci for African savanna elephant, African forest elephant, Asian elephant, the extinct American mastodon, and the woolly mammoth. Our data establish that the Asian elephant is the closest living relative of the extinct mammoth in the nuclear genome, extending previous findings from mitochondrial DNA analyses. We also find that savanna and forest elephants, which some have argued are the same species, are as or more divergent in the nuclear genome as mammoths and Asian elephants, which are considered to be distinct genera, thus resolving a long-standing debate about the appropriate taxonomic classification of the African elephants. Finally, we document a much larger effective population size in forest elephants compared with the other elephantid taxa, likely reflecting species differences in ancient geographic structure and range and differences in life history traits such as variance in male reproductive success.

  3. Detection of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus type 1 in asymptomatic elephants using TaqMan real-time PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardman, K; Dastjerdi, A; Gurrala, R; Routh, A; Banks, M; Steinbach, F; Bouts, T

    2012-02-25

    This study assessed the feasibility of identifying asymptomatic viral shedders using a novel TaqMan real-time PCR on trunk washes and swabs from the conjunctiva, palate and vulva of elephants. Six elephants from a UK collection were sampled weekly over a period of 11 weeks for this study. The herd prevalence of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus-1 (EEHV-1) was 100 per cent by PCR. The virus DNA was detected in all the sampling sites; however, the prevalence of virus DNA in the conjunctiva swabs was higher. In addition, Asian elephants from two continental European collections were sampled once and one animal tested positive on a trunk wash. The virus from this animal was phylogenetically typed as EEHV-1A based on 231 nucleotides of the terminase gene.

  4. 78 FR 54479 - Endangered Species; Receipt of Applications for Permit

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-04

    ... conservation responsibilities for affected species, and in consideration of section 10(a)(1)(A) of the... female Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) from Calgary Zoo, Canada, to enhance the species' propagation...

  5. Review of Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesviruses and Acute Hemorrhagic Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Simon Y; Latimer, Erin M; Hayward, Gary S

    2016-01-01

    More than 100 young captive and wild Asian elephants are known to have died from a rapid-onset, acute hemorrhagic disease caused primarily by multiple distinct strains of two closely related chimeric variants of a novel herpesvirus species designated elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV1A and EEHV1B). These and two other species of Probosciviruses (EEHV4 and EEHV5) are evidently ancient and likely nearly ubiquitous asymptomatic infections of adult Asian elephants worldwide that are occasionally shed in trunk wash secretions. Although only a handful of similar cases have been observed in African elephants, they also have proved to harbor their own multiple and distinct species of Probosciviruses-EEHV2, EEHV3, EEHV6, and EEHV7-found in lung and skin nodules or saliva. For reasons that are not yet understood, approximately 20% of Asian elephant calves appear to be susceptible to the disease when primary infections are not controlled by normal innate cellular and humoral immune responses. Sensitive specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR) DNA blood tests have been developed, routine monitoring has been established, the complete large DNA genomes of each of the four Asian EEHV species have now been sequenced, and PCR gene subtyping has provided unambiguous evidence that this is a sporadic rather than epidemic disease that it is not being spread among zoos or other elephant housing facilities. Nevertheless, researchers have not yet been able to propagate EEHV in cell culture, determine whether or not human antiherpesvirus drugs are effective inhibitors, or develop serology assays that can distinguish between antibodies against the multiple different EEHV species.

  6. Biogeography and molar morphology of Pleistocene African elephants: new evidence from Elandsfontein, Western Cape Province, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Kathlyn M.; Stynder, Deano D.

    2015-05-01

    Elandsfontein (EFT) is a Middle Pleistocene archaeological/paleontological site located in the Western Cape Province of South Africa. The largest herbivore in the assemblage is Loxodonta atlantica zulu, an extinct member of the genus that includes modern African elephants. No Elephas recki specimens were recovered at EFT, despite their common occurrence in other regions of Africa at the same time. Because E. recki and L. atlantica molars are similar in appearance, but the two species are traditionally viewed as dominating different regions of Africa during the Pleistocene, isolated molars may on occasions have been assessed to species level on the basis of geography rather than morphology. The last morphologic evaluation of EFT elephants was conducted in the 1970s, and revisiting this issue with new specimens provides added insight into the evolution of elephants in Africa. Reevaluating morphological characteristics of EFT elephant molars, through qualitative and quantitative description and comparison with Middle Pleistocene E. recki recki, L. atlantica atlantica, and L. atlantica zulu molar morphology, corroborates assessment of EFT elephants as L. a. zulu. Two recently discovered, previously undescribed molars from EFT show that molars of L. a. zulu exhibit greater variation in enamel thickness, lamellar frequency, and occlusal surface morphology than previously reported. An update of the Pleistocene biogeography of Loxodonta and Elephas indicates that fossil remains of both are often found at the same localities in eastern Africa. Their rare co-occurrences in the north and south, however, suggest geographic separation of the two genera in at least some regions of Africa, which may have been based on habitat preference.

  7. Elephants and Human Color-Blind Deuteranopes Have Identical Sets of Visual Pigments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yokoyama, Shozo; Takenaka, Naomi; Agnew, Dalen W.; Shoshani, Jeheskel

    2005-01-01

    Being the largest land mammals, elephants have very few natural enemies and are active during both day and night. Compared with those of diurnal and nocturnal animals, the eyes of elephants and other arrhythmic species, such as many ungulates and large carnivores, must function in both the bright light of day and dim light of night. Despite their fundamental importance, the roles of photosensitive molecules, visual pigments, in arrhythmic vision are not well understood. Here we report that elephants (Loxodonta africana and Elephas maximus) use RH1, SWS1, and LWS pigments, which are maximally sensitive to 496, 419, and 552 nm, respectively. These light sensitivities are virtually identical to those of certain “color-blind” people who lack MWS pigments, which are maximally sensitive to 530 nm. During the day, therefore, elephants seem to have the dichromatic color vision of deuteranopes. During the night, however, they are likely to use RH1 and SWS1 pigments and detect light at 420–490 nm. PMID:15781694

  8. The Elephant Did It!

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨阳

    2007-01-01

    A man was travelling abroad in a small red car. One day he left the car and went shopping. When he came back, its roof was badly damaged. Some boys told him that an elephant had damaged it. The man did not believe them, but they took him to a cirus which was near there. The owner of the elephant said, “I am very sorry! My elephant has a big, round, red chair. He thought that your car was his chair, and he sat on it!” Then he gave the man a letter, in which he said that he was sorry and that he would pay ...

  9. Diet and distribution of elephants in the Maputo Elephant Reserve

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Ntumi, C.; Correia, A.; Mafuca, J.

    2000-01-01

    The distribution and diet of the elephants of the Maputo Elephant Reserve were studied using dung counts, satellite tracking and faecal analysis. The results were compared with earlier data from before the civil war in Mozambique. The elephant population decreased during the civil war, but 180 anima

  10. Distribution Patterns of Human Elephant Conflict in Areas Adjacent to Rungwa Game Reserve, Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Munuo, Wilbright

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Human pressure on terrestrial ecosystems has caused loss and fragmentation of habitats for wildlife species. That has brought humans and wildlife in close proximity intensifying human wildlife conflicts, especially when wild animals with wide home ranges, such as African and Asian elephants, are involved. This study assesses distribution patterns of human elephant conflict (HEC) in areas adjacent to Rungwa Game Reserve (RGR) in Tanzania. Questionnaire survey was used as a tool fo...

  11. The use of radio-tracking data to guide development and manage elephants

    OpenAIRE

    Fernando, P; Prasad, T.; Janaka, H K; Ekanayaka, S K K; Nishantha, H G; Pastorini, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    Asian elephants are difficult to observe because of habitat constraints and behavioural adaptations to avoid people. Consequently, accurate information on their movement patterns, habitat occupancy and resource use can only be obtained through radiotracking.GPS radio telemetry is particularly useful for this purpose as it provides a wealth of high quality data. Around 60 elephants have been tracked in Sri Lanka over the past two decades using GPS collars. Here we present four case studies dem...

  12. Human cowpox virus infection acquired from a circus elephant in Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemmer, Christoph J; Littmann, Martina; Löbermann, Micha; Meyer, Hermann; Petschaelis, Angelika; Reisinger, Emil C

    2010-09-01

    A 40-year-old Asian circus elephant developed mouth and trunk ulcers. Three weeks later, her 19-year-old animal warden noticed a vesicle on his forearm, evolving into a scab. Identical cowpox strains were isolated from lesions of the elephant and the warden. Cowpox virus could no longer be isolated after the scab disappeared, but PCR still revealed orthopox DNA. Healing was complete seven weeks later, leaving a 1 cm scar.

  13. Recursion to food plants by free-ranging Bornean elephant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan English

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Plant recovery rates after herbivory are thought to be a key factor driving recursion by herbivores to sites and plants to optimise resource-use but have not been investigated as an explanation for recursion in large herbivores. We investigated the relationship between plant recovery and recursion by elephants (Elephas maximus borneensis in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary, Sabah. We identified 182 recently eaten food plants, from 30 species, along 14 × 50 m transects and measured their recovery growth each month over nine months or until they were re-browsed by elephants. The monthly growth in leaf and branch or shoot length for each plant was used to calculate the time required (months for each species to recover to its pre-eaten length. Elephant returned to all but two transects with 10 eaten plants, a further 26 plants died leaving 146 plants that could be re-eaten. Recursion occurred to 58% of all plants and 12 of the 30 species. Seventy-seven percent of the re-eaten plants were grasses. Recovery times to all plants varied from two to twenty months depending on the species. Recursion to all grasses coincided with plant recovery whereas recursion to most browsed plants occurred four to twelve months before they had recovered to their previous length. The small sample size of many browsed plants that received recursion and uneven plant species distribution across transects limits our ability to generalise for most browsed species but a prominent pattern in plant-scale recursion did emerge. Plant recovery time was a good predictor of time to recursion but varied as a function of growth form (grass, ginger, palm, liana and woody and differences between sites. Time to plant recursion coincided with plant recovery time for the elephant’s preferred food, grasses, and perhaps also gingers, but not the other browsed species. Elephants are bulk feeders so it is likely that they time their returns to bulk feed on these grass species when

  14. An overview of the central nervous system of the elephant through a critical appraisal of the literature published in the XIX and XX centuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cozzi, B; Spagnoli, S; Bruno, L

    2001-01-15

    The two species of elephants (Indian: Elephas maximus and African: Loxodonta africana) possess the largest brain among land mammals. Due to its size, the elephant brain is discussed in virtually every paper dealing with the evolution of the central nervous system of mammals and comparative brain size. Studies on the social habits of elephants also deal with the skills and the "intelligence" and brain size of these species. Yet most of the descriptions and conclusions reported in comparative studies rely on second-hand data derived from investigations performed several decades before, often dating as far back as the XIX century. Furthermore, many of the original papers actually describing gross and detailed features of the brain of elephants are either no longer available, are written in languages other than English, or are difficult to trace. The present study gives a short description of the anatomy of the central nervous system of elephants, with special attention to its distinctive features, reports all available literature on the subject, and briefly discusses its origins and rationale.

  15. Unusual Behavioural Responses of Elephants: A Challenge for Mitigating Man – Elephant Conflict in “Shivalik Elephant Reserve”, Northwest India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ritesh JOSHI

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Drastic changes in the Shivalik landscape and rapid rate of developmental and anthropogenic activities are expected to lead to a severe threat and unusual behavioural changes in elephants. Some unusual behavioural responses of Asian elephants were observed from northwest India, which were rather abnormal and were directly linked with increasing man–elephant conflict. To evaluate ground based data, we used ground surveys to generate database on these behavioural responses and to identify potential impact of developmental projects and anthropogenic activities and for this we made 387 extensive surveys in the crucial elephant’s reserve and on the motor roads, which are running across different habitats during March 2005 to December 2008. All the behaviours studied represents the severe interaction scenario between man and elephant and the prime reason found behind this was human encroachment into the deeper forest regime and shrinking of large migratory corridors. Understanding how animal populations react to such vast adverse activities and their behavioural response is thus essential for addressing future challenges for wildlife management and conservation. There have been little scientific studies available on such type of catastrophic impacts even though such reports are highly required to know the status and our competence in illustrating success and failures of wildlife management besides in conservation of an endangered wildlife. An adaptive management approach will be crucial with corridor connectivity being of paramount importance, as we continue to gain knowledge of wildlife and elephant’s response to such derisive impacts.

  16. A simple and inexpensive molecular method for sexing and identification of the forensic samples of elephant origin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Sandeep K; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy; Singh, Lalji

    2006-07-01

    The population of the Asian elephant is being dramatically reduced due to poaching of the ivory from the male. As poaching occurs in remote forests, it often takes weeks or longer for it to be discovered and it is therefore often very difficult to determine the sex of the decomposed body. Data suggest that in the recent past, over 2000 male elephants have been poached in South India. We have developed a technique based on molecular markers to determine that the carcass is an elephant and that it is a male. Using DNA sequence information from Genbank, we have developed two primer pairs: one for the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and the other for the sex-determining region of Y chromosome (SRY) gene of the Indian elephant. After PCR amplification of known elephant DNA, we found that the mtDNA was common in both males and females, whereas the SRY-specific amplicon was observed only in the male.

  17. Freezing African elephant semen as a new population management tool.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Hermes

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The captive elephant population is not self-sustaining and with a limited number of breeding bulls, its genetic diversity is in decline. One way to overcome this is to import young and healthy animals from the wild. We introduce here a more sustainable alternative method - importation of semen from wild bulls without removing them from their natural habitat. Due to the logistics involved, the only practical option would be to transport cryopreserved sperm. Despite some early reports on African elephant semen cryopreservation, the utility of this new population management tool has not been evaluated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Semen was collected by electroejaculation from 14 wild African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana bulls and cryopreserved using the directional freezing technique. Sperm treatments evaluated included the need for centrifugation, the use of hen or quail yolk, the concentration of glycerol (3%, 5% or 7% in the extender, and maintenance of motility over time after thawing. Our results suggest that dilution in an extender containing hen yolk and 7% glycerol after centrifugation best preserved post-thaw sperm motility when compared to all other treatments (P≤0.012 for all. Using this approach we were able to achieve after thawing (mean ± SD 54.6±3.9% motility, 85.3±2.4% acrosome integrity, and 86.8±4.6% normal morphology with no decrease in motility over 1 h incubation at 37°C. Sperm cryopreserved during this study has already lead to a pregnancy of a captive female elephant following artificial insemination. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: With working techniques for artificial insemination and sperm cryopreservation of both African and Asian elephants in hand, population managers can now enrich captive or isolated wild elephant populations without removing valuable individuals from their natural habitat.

  18. Elephant crop damage and electric fence construction in the Maputo Elephant Reserve, Mozambique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Ntumi, C.P.

    2001-01-01

    An electric fence is at present being constructed around the Maputo Elephant Reserve, Mozambique, to protect farmers from elephant raids. Elephants cause crop damage, estimated at US$ 8800 yr-1, or US$ 50 elephant-1. Elephants preferred maize, melons and beans and their raid frequency increased duri

  19. Assessing the General Education Elephant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eubanks, David A.

    2008-01-01

    Determining the success of a general education program can resemble the task of John Godfrey's six blind men in trying to acquaint themselves with an elephant. One man's approach is to feel the tusk and conclude that the elephant is a spear. Another approach leads to thinking that the broad side of the animal is a wall. The many ways of asking and…

  20. Illuminating Cancer Resistance in Elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-01

    A new study shows that elephants have at least 20 copies of the tumor suppressor gene TP53; their cells also favor apoptosis over DNA repair when subjected to DNA-damaging agents. These findings may help explain elephants' longevity and low cancer risk, and shed further light on natural cancer suppression mechanisms.

  1. Skewed birth sex ratio and premature mortality in elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saragusty, Joseph; Hermes, Robert; Göritz, Frank; Schmitt, Dennis L; Hildebrandt, Thomas B

    2009-10-01

    Sex allocation theories predict equal offspring number of both sexes unless differential investment is required or some competition exists. Left undisturbed, elephants reproduce well and in approximately even numbers in the wild. We report an excess of males are born and substantial juvenile mortality occurs, perinatally, in captivity. Studbook data on captive births (CB, n=487) and premature deaths (PD, 6 months with maternal insufficient milk production, natural hazards and accidents being the main causes. European Asian and Myanmar elephants PD was biased towards males (0.71, P=0.024 and 0.56, P<0.001, respectively). The skewed birth sex ratio and high juvenile mortality hinder efforts to help captive populations become self-sustaining. Efforts should be invested to identify the mechanism behind these trends and seek solutions for them.

  2. Elephant resource-use traditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fishlock, Victoria; Caldwell, Christine; Lee, Phyllis C

    2016-03-01

    African elephants (Loxodonta africana) use unusual and restricted habitats such as swampy clearings, montane outcrops and dry rivers for a variety of social and ecological reasons. Within these habitats, elephants focus on very specific areas for resource exploitation, resulting in deep caves, large forest clearings and sand pits as well as long-established and highly demarcated routes for moving between resources. We review evidence for specific habitat exploitation in elephants and suggest that this represents socially learned cultural behaviour. Although elephants show high fidelity to precise locations over the very long term, these location preferences are explained neither by resource quality nor by accessibility. Acquiring techniques for exploiting specific resource sites requires observing conspecifics and practice and is evidence for social learning. Elephants possess sophisticated cognitive capacities used to track relationships and resources over their long lifespans, and they have an extended period of juvenile dependency as a result of the need to acquire this considerable social and ecological knowledge. Thus, elephant fidelity to particular sites results in traditional behaviour over generations, with the potential to weaken relationships between resource quality and site preferences. Illustrating the evidence for such powerful traditions in a species such as elephants contributes to understanding animal cognition in natural contexts.

  3. Is painting by elephants in zoos as enriching as we are led to believe?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan English

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between the activity of painting and performance of stereotyped and other stress-related behaviour was investigated in four captive Asian elephants at Melbourne Zoo, Australia. The activity involved the elephant being instructed to paint on a canvas by its keeper in front of an audience. Painting by elephants in zoos is commonly believed to be a form of enrichment, but this assumption had not been based on any systematic research. If an activity is enriching we would expect stress-related behaviour to be reduced but we found no evidence of the elephants anticipating the painting activity and no effect on the performance of stereotyped or other stress-related behaviour either before or after the painting session. This indicates that the activity does not fulfil one of the main aims of enrichment. However, if an elephant was not selected to paint on a given day this was associated with higher levels of non-interactive behaviour, a possible indicator of stress. Behavioural observations associated with ear, eye and trunk positions during the painting session showed that the elephant’s attentiveness to the painting activity or to the keeper giving instruction varied between individuals. Apart from positive reinforcement from the keeper, the results indicated that elephants gain little enrichment from the activity of painting. Hence, the benefits of this activity appear to be limited to the aesthetic appeal of these paintings to the people viewing them.

  4. The Elephant and the Monkey

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    朱妤

    2009-01-01

    @@ Once an Elephant met a Monkey."Look how big and strong I am!"he said."I can break a tree.Can you break a tree?" "Look how quickly I can run and climb!"said the Monkey."Can you climb a tree?" The elephant was proud because he was so strong,and the Monkey Was proud because she was so quick.

  5. Making sense of elephants in the shamba

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bond, Jennifer Lauren

    This article applies sensemaking theory to instances of human-elephant interaction to understand how farmers make sense of elephants in their crops and how this fits into a broader discussion of human-wildlife coexistence. The concept of sensemaking is extended to discuss the institutional context...... of wildlife management and the role this has on the individual farmers’ enacting and selection when confronted with an elephant in their crop. Analysis showed that respondents who had come into direct physical contact with an elephant reported to be more likely to refrain from attempting to scare elephants...... in the future and viewed them as dangerous. In comparison, farmers who had not experienced direct physical contact and subsequent injury from an elephant reported that they would continue to engage in interactions with elephants to remove them from their crops, viewing the elephants primarily as a pest...

  6. Trunkloads of viruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellett, Philip E

    2014-12-01

    Elephant populations are under intense pressure internationally from habitat destruction and poaching for ivory and meat. They also face pressure from infectious agents, including elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus 1 (EEHV1), which kills ~20% of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) born in zoos and causes disease in the wild. EEHV1 is one of at least six distinct EEHV in a phylogenetic lineage that appears to represent an ancient but newly recognized subfamily (the Deltaherpesvirinae) in the family Herpesviridae.

  7. Effects of economic downturns on mortality of wild African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittemyer, George

    2011-10-01

    Declines in economic activity and associated changes in human livelihood strategies can increase threats of species overexploitation. This is exemplified by the effects of economic crises, which often drive intensification of subsistence poaching and greater reliance on natural resources. Whereas development theory links natural resource use to social-economic conditions, few empirical studies of the effect of economic downturns on wild animal species have been conducted. I assessed the relations between African elephant (Loxodonta africana) mortality and human-caused wounds in Samburu, Kenya and (1) livestock and maize prices (measures of local economic conditions), (2) change in national and regional gross domestic product (GDP) (measures of macroeconomic conditions), and (3) the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) (a correlate of primary productivity). In addition, I analyzed household survey data to determine the attitudes of local people toward protected areas and wild animals in the area. When cattle prices in the pastoralist study region were low, human-caused wounds to and adult mortality of elephants increased. The NDVI was negatively correlated with juvenile mortality, but not correlated with adult mortality. Changes in Kenyan and East Asian (primary market for ivory) GDP did not explain significant variation in mortality. Increased human wounding of elephants and elephant mortality during periods of low livestock prices (local economic downturns) likely reflect an economically driven increase in ivory poaching. Local but not macroeconomic indices explained significant variation in mortality, likely due to the dominance of the subsistence economy in the study area and its political and economic isolation. My results suggest economic metrics can serve as effective indicators of changes in human use of and resulting effects on natural resources. Such information can help focus management approaches (e.g., antipoaching effort or proffering of

  8. The Singer of the Elephant

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    郭雨微

    2013-01-01

    The film Elephant is novel not only in its narrative style and abundant use of long shots, but also in its selection of two pieces of piano music. What the movie lenses hope to express is the same thing that the will of piano music does. Alex is not only a player of the two pieces of piano music but also a singer of the elephant.The thesis applies Schopenhauer’s will theory in music to analyze Alex’s song《For Elise》and《Moonlight Sonata》and to anatomize his mental activity and brewing of thought. By using the power of piano music this thesis aims at digging out how he becomes the singer of the elephant.

  9. My Favorite Animal-Elephant

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    童佳欣; 姜彩娟

    2002-01-01

    There are many kinds of animals in the world.and i like the elephants best of all because they are the biggest animals on land they have the biggest ears and the biggest teeth,they also have a longnose,

  10. Detusking fence-breaker elephants as an approach in human-elephant conflict mitigation

    OpenAIRE

    Matthew Mutinda; Geoffrey Chenge; Francis Gakuya; Moses Otiende; Patrick Omondi; Samuel Kasiki; Soriguer, Ramón C.; Samer Alasaad

    2014-01-01

    Background: Human-elephant conflict (HEC) is a recurring problem that appears wherever the range of elephants and humans overlap. Different methods including the use of electric fences are used worldwide to mitigate this conflict. Nonetheless, elephants learn quickly that their tusks do not conduct electricity and use them to break down fences (fencebreakers). Methodology/Principal Findings: In Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Kenya, destructive elephants (Loxodonta africana) were monitored between...

  11. Analysis Of Policy Options To Convert Human-Elephant Conflict Into Human-Elephant Harmony

    OpenAIRE

    Rawadee Jarungrattanapong; Siriporn Sajjanand

    2011-01-01

    In Thailand the number of elephants are declining, and many of the remaining animals are protected in a network of wildlife sanctuaries. Unfortunately, elephants from these protected areas are coming into conflict with farmers. This human-elephant conflict (HEC) is causing crop damage. It is also leading to injury and loss of life amongst both farmers and elephants. This study has looked at this problem and has highlighted a combination of policies that should help to reduce it. It finds that...

  12. Unmanned aerial survey of elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermeulen, Cédric; Lejeune, Philippe; Lisein, Jonathan; Sawadogo, Prosper; Bouché, Philippe

    2013-01-01

    The use of a UAS (Unmanned Aircraft System) was tested to survey large mammals in the Nazinga Game Ranch in the south of Burkina Faso. The Gatewing ×100™ equipped with a Ricoh GR III camera was used to test animal reaction as the UAS passed, and visibility on the images. No reaction was recorded as the UAS passed at a height of 100 m. Observations, made on a set of more than 7000 images, revealed that only elephants (Loxodonta africana) were easily visible while medium and small sized mammals were not. The easy observation of elephants allows experts to enumerate them on images acquired at a height of 100 m. We, therefore, implemented an aerial strip sample count along transects used for the annual wildlife foot count. A total of 34 elephants were recorded on 4 transects, each overflown twice. The elephant density was estimated at 2.47 elephants/km(2) with a coefficient of variation (CV%) of 36.10%. The main drawback of our UAS was its low autonomy (45 min). Increased endurance of small UAS is required to replace manned aircraft survey of large areas (about 1000 km of transect per day vs 40 km for our UAS). The monitoring strategy should be adapted according to the sampling plan. Also, the UAS is as expensive as a second-hand light aircraft. However the logistic and flight implementation are easier, the running costs are lower and its use is safer. Technological evolution will make civil UAS more efficient, allowing them to compete with light aircraft for aerial wildlife surveys.

  13. Unmanned aerial survey of elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cédric Vermeulen

    Full Text Available The use of a UAS (Unmanned Aircraft System was tested to survey large mammals in the Nazinga Game Ranch in the south of Burkina Faso. The Gatewing ×100™ equipped with a Ricoh GR III camera was used to test animal reaction as the UAS passed, and visibility on the images. No reaction was recorded as the UAS passed at a height of 100 m. Observations, made on a set of more than 7000 images, revealed that only elephants (Loxodonta africana were easily visible while medium and small sized mammals were not. The easy observation of elephants allows experts to enumerate them on images acquired at a height of 100 m. We, therefore, implemented an aerial strip sample count along transects used for the annual wildlife foot count. A total of 34 elephants were recorded on 4 transects, each overflown twice. The elephant density was estimated at 2.47 elephants/km(2 with a coefficient of variation (CV% of 36.10%. The main drawback of our UAS was its low autonomy (45 min. Increased endurance of small UAS is required to replace manned aircraft survey of large areas (about 1000 km of transect per day vs 40 km for our UAS. The monitoring strategy should be adapted according to the sampling plan. Also, the UAS is as expensive as a second-hand light aircraft. However the logistic and flight implementation are easier, the running costs are lower and its use is safer. Technological evolution will make civil UAS more efficient, allowing them to compete with light aircraft for aerial wildlife surveys.

  14. Diet and distribution of elephant in the Maputo Elephant Reserve, Mozambique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Boer, WF; Ntumi, CP; Correia, AU; Mafuca, JM

    2000-01-01

    The distribution and diet of the elephants of the Maputo Elephant Reserve were studied using dung counts, satellite tracking and faecal analysis. The results were compared with earlier data from before the civil war in Mozambique. The elephant population decreased during the civil war, but 180 anima

  15. Use of space and habitat use by elephants (Loxodonta africana) in the Maputo Elephant Reserve, Mozambique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ntumi, C.P.; Aarde, van R.J.; Fairall, N.; Boer, de W.F.

    2005-01-01

    Satellite tracking units fitted to five elephants in the Maputo Elephant Reserve provided information on habitat use. We used the CALHOME program with Adaptive Kernel and MCP (minimum convex polygon) techniques to calculate home range sizes. We interpreted vegetation use by elephants using a vegetat

  16. Making sense of elephants in the shamba

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bond, Jennifer Lauren

    of wildlife management and the role this has on the individual farmers’ enacting and selection when confronted with an elephant in their crop. Analysis showed that respondents who had come into direct physical contact with an elephant reported to be more likely to refrain from attempting to scare elephants...... in the future and viewed them as dangerous. In comparison, farmers who had not experienced direct physical contact and subsequent injury from an elephant reported that they would continue to engage in interactions with elephants to remove them from their crops, viewing the elephants primarily as a pest...... is intended as a snapshot of the potential for the application of sensemaking theory to human-wildlife interactions rather than a case for generalisation....

  17. Elephant-to-Human Transmission of Tuberculosis

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2011-02-23

    This podcast reports on the transmission of TB from elephants to humans. Dr. Rendi Murphree, Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Vanderbilt University Visiting Scholar, discusses the recent elephant-to-human transmission of tuberculosis at an elephant refuge in Tennessee.  Created: 2/23/2011 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 2/23/2011.

  18. Forest elephant crisis in the Congo Basin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen Blake

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Debate over repealing the ivory trade ban dominates conferences of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES. Resolving this controversy requires accurate estimates of elephant population trends and rates of illegal killing. Most African savannah elephant populations are well known; however, the status of forest elephants, perhaps a distinct species, in the vast Congo Basin is unclear. We assessed population status and incidence of poaching from line-transect and reconnaissance surveys conducted on foot in sites throughout the Congo Basin. Results indicate that the abundance and range of forest elephants are threatened from poaching that is most intense close to roads. The probability of elephant presence increased with distance to roads, whereas that of human signs declined. At all distances from roads, the probability of elephant occurrence was always higher inside, compared to outside, protected areas, whereas that of humans was always lower. Inside protected areas, forest elephant density was correlated with the size of remote forest core, but not with size of protected area. Forest elephants must be prioritised in elephant management planning at the continental scale.

  19. Forest elephant crisis in the Congo Basin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, Stephen; Strindberg, Samantha; Boudjan, Patrick; Makombo, Calixte; Bila-Isia, Inogwabini; Ilambu, Omari; Grossmann, Falk; Bene-Bene, Lambert; de Semboli, Bruno; Mbenzo, Valentin; S'hwa, Dino; Bayogo, Rosine; Williamson, Liz; Fay, Mike; Hart, John; Maisels, Fiona

    2007-04-01

    Debate over repealing the ivory trade ban dominates conferences of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Resolving this controversy requires accurate estimates of elephant population trends and rates of illegal killing. Most African savannah elephant populations are well known; however, the status of forest elephants, perhaps a distinct species, in the vast Congo Basin is unclear. We assessed population status and incidence of poaching from line-transect and reconnaissance surveys conducted on foot in sites throughout the Congo Basin. Results indicate that the abundance and range of forest elephants are threatened from poaching that is most intense close to roads. The probability of elephant presence increased with distance to roads, whereas that of human signs declined. At all distances from roads, the probability of elephant occurrence was always higher inside, compared to outside, protected areas, whereas that of humans was always lower. Inside protected areas, forest elephant density was correlated with the size of remote forest core, but not with size of protected area. Forest elephants must be prioritised in elephant management planning at the continental scale.

  20. Paenungulata: a comparison of the hemoglobin sequences from elephant, hyrax, and manatee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinschmidt, T; Czelusniak, J; Goodman, M; Braunitzer, G

    1986-09-01

    Inspection of the amino acid differences among hemoglobin sequences of a wide range of mammalian species suggested that at alpha 19, alpha 110, alpha 111, beta 23, beta 44, and beta 56, synapomorphies group manatee (Trichechus inungius, Sirenia), Indian and African elephant (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africana, Proboscidea), and rock hyrax (Procavia habessinica, Hyracoidea) into a monophyletic clade. Results obtained by parsimony analysis provide evidence for this grouping--and thus support for the genealogical validity of Simpson's superorder Paenungulata, which contains as the extant orders Proboscidea, Sirenia, and Hyracoidea. All of the 39 most, or nearly most, parsimonious of 10,395 trees constructed from a tandemly combined alpha- and beta-hemoglobin sequence for 103 vertebrate species (of which 79 were mammals from 16 extant orders), depicted Paenungulata as one of the most anciently separated branches of Eutheria. It was found on examining thousands of alternative trees that to not group Proboscidea, Hyracoidea, and Sirenia in a monophyletic clade required at least four additional substitutions.

  1. The winter diet of elephant in Eastern Cape Subtropical Thicket, Addo Elephant National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.G.T. Paley

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available Direct observational methods were used to establish the winter diet of elephants in Eastern Cape Subtropical Thicket in the Addo Elephant National Park, thereby determining which plant species were most at risk from elephant herbivory. A total of 70 species were identified as food plants for elephants, with the grass Cynodon dactylon and the succulents Portulacaria afra and Platythyra haeckeliana dominating, both in terms of frequency of feeding events and volume consumed. In view of the fact that elephants represent 78 of the herbivore biomass in the park, it appears likely that elephant feeding restricts the availability of forage for other browsers. Due to the limited time frame of this study, further research is needed to provide a comprehensive record of the elephant diet for all seasons of the year.

  2. Elephants: Big, Strong and Wise. Young Discovery Library Series.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfeffer, Pierre

    This book is written for children ages 5 through 10. Part of a series designed to develop their curiosity, fascinate them and educate them, this volume examines the characteristics and natural history of elephants. Topics included are: (1) elephant's ancestors; (2) elephant life; and (3) training elephants for work. Quiz items are included. (YP)

  3. Finding Elephant Flows for Optical Networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fioreze, Tiago; Oude Wolbers, Mattijs; Meent, van de Remco; Pras, Aiko

    2007-01-01

    Optical networks are fast and reliable networks that enable, amongst others, dedicated light paths to be established for elephant IP flows. Elephant IP flows are characterized by being small in number, but long in time and high in traffic volume. Moving these flows from the general IP network to ded

  4. The Elephants Teach: Creative Writing since 1880

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, David Gershom

    2006-01-01

    When Vladimir Nabokov was up for a chair in literature at Harvard, the linguist Roman Jakobson protested: "What's next? Shall we appoint elephants to teach zoology?" That anecdote, with which D. G. Myers begins "The Elephants Teach", perfectly frames the issues this book tackles. Myers explores more than a century of debate over how writing should…

  5. Molecular phylogenetic inference of the woolly mammoth Mammuthus primigenius, based on complete sequences of mitochondrial cytochrome b and 12S ribosomal RNA genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noro, M; Masuda, R; Dubrovo, I A; Yoshida, M C; Kato, M

    1998-03-01

    Complete sequences of cytochrome b (1,137 bases) and 12S ribosomal RNA (961 bases) genes in mitochondrial DNA were successfully determined from the woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius), African elephant (Loxodonta africana), and Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). From these sequence data, phylogenetic relationships among three genera were examined. Molecular phylogenetic trees reconstructed by the neighbor-joining and the maximum parsimony methods provided an identical topology both for cytochrome b and 12S rRNA genes. These results support the "Mammuthus-Loxodonta" clade, which is contrary to some previous morphological reports that Mammuthus is more closely related to Elephas than to Loxodonta.

  6. 77 FR 298 - Endangered Species Receipt of Applications for Permit

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-04

    ... variegata), western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla), Bornean orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus), leopard (Panthera pardus), Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae), and Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) to enhance their... their captive-bred wildlife registration under 50 CFR 17.21(g) for leopard (Panthera pardus) and...

  7. Elderly Elephants Catch a Break

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李邮

    2003-01-01

    印度的喀拉拉邦是一个把大象用作劳动工具的地方。大象的平均寿命为80岁,现在规定了大象的退休年龄为60岁。但是,当地人认为:Age should notbe the criterion for determining when an elephant should retire.本文还告诉我们一头大象每日的劳动报酬是多少。

  8. Genetic variation at hair length candidate genes in elephants and the extinct woolly mammoth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tisdale Michele

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Like humans, the living elephants are unusual among mammals in being sparsely covered with hair. Relative to extant elephants, the extinct woolly mammoth, Mammuthus primigenius, had a dense hair cover and extremely long hair, which likely were adaptations to its subarctic habitat. The fibroblast growth factor 5 (FGF5 gene affects hair length in a diverse set of mammalian species. Mutations in FGF5 lead to recessive long hair phenotypes in mice, dogs, and cats; and the gene has been implicated in hair length variation in rabbits. Thus, FGF5 represents a leading candidate gene for the phenotypic differences in hair length notable between extant elephants and the woolly mammoth. We therefore sequenced the three exons (except for the 3' UTR and a portion of the promoter of FGF5 from the living elephantid species (Asian, African savanna and African forest elephants and, using protocols for ancient DNA, from a woolly mammoth. Results Between the extant elephants and the mammoth, two single base substitutions were observed in FGF5, neither of which alters the amino acid sequence. Modeling of the protein structure suggests that the elephantid proteins fold similarly to the human FGF5 protein. Bioinformatics analyses and DNA sequencing of another locus that has been implicated in hair cover in humans, type I hair keratin pseudogene (KRTHAP1, also yielded negative results. Interestingly, KRTHAP1 is a pseudogene in elephantids as in humans (although fully functional in non-human primates. Conclusion The data suggest that the coding sequence of the FGF5 gene is not the critical determinant of hair length differences among elephantids. The results are discussed in the context of hairlessness among mammals and in terms of the potential impact of large body size, subarctic conditions, and an aquatic ancestor on hair cover in the Proboscidea.

  9. WAR ELEPHANTS IN THE PYRRHUS' ARMY

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    In the IIIrd century BC king of Epirus Pyrrhus has used Indian elephants in his army. These animals have been brought to his forces from Ptolemy Thunderbolt. These beasts came to Europe with Seleucus Nicator and took part in many battles between the Diadochi in Asia. Pyrrhus has used them in Italian campanign and he was the first who had brought these animals to Italy. They became the first elephants which terrified Romans and were the first elephants which have been defeated by them. This wa...

  10. Structure of African elephant populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Siegismund, H R; Arctander, P

    1996-01-01

    The structure of elephant populations from east and south Africa has been analyzed by Georgiadis et al. (1994) on the basis of restriction site variation of mitochondrial DNA. They used F statistics based on identity by descent in tests for subdivision and reached the conclusion that there was a ......The structure of elephant populations from east and south Africa has been analyzed by Georgiadis et al. (1994) on the basis of restriction site variation of mitochondrial DNA. They used F statistics based on identity by descent in tests for subdivision and reached the conclusion...... that there was a significant differentiation at the continental level, but that "populations were not significantly subdivided at the regional levels." The data were reanalyzed by Monte-Carlo permutation tests where population subdivision was tested by using F statistics based on partitioning the total haplotype diversity...... among populations. This resulted in identical conclusions at the continental level, but revealed in addition a significant subdivision at the regional level indicating haplotype frequency differences among the populations....

  11. Walking Behavior of Zoo Elephants: Associations between GPS-Measured Daily Walking Distances and Environmental Factors, Social Factors, and Welfare Indicators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew R Holdgate

    Full Text Available Research with humans and other animals suggests that walking benefits physical health. Perhaps because these links have been demonstrated in other species, it has been suggested that walking is important to elephant welfare, and that zoo elephant exhibits should be designed to allow for more walking. Our study is the first to address this suggestion empirically by measuring the mean daily walking distance of elephants in North American zoos, determining the factors that are associated with variations in walking distance, and testing for associations between walking and welfare indicators. We used anklets equipped with GPS data loggers to measure outdoor daily walking distance in 56 adult female African (n = 33 and Asian (n = 23 elephants housed in 30 North American zoos. We collected 259 days of data and determined associations between distance walked and social, housing, management, and demographic factors. Elephants walked an average of 5.3 km/day with no significant difference between species. In our multivariable model, more diverse feeding regimens were correlated with increased walking, and elephants who were fed on a temporally unpredictable feeding schedule walked 1.29 km/day more than elephants fed on a predictable schedule. Distance walked was also positively correlated with an increase in the number of social groupings and negatively correlated with age. We found a small but significant negative correlation between distance walked and nighttime Space Experience, but no other associations between walking distances and exhibit size were found. Finally, distance walked was not related to health or behavioral outcomes including foot health, joint health, body condition, and the performance of stereotypic behavior, suggesting that more research is necessary to determine explicitly how differences in walking may impact elephant welfare.

  12. Detusking fence-breaker elephants as an approach in human-elephant conflict mitigation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Mutinda

    Full Text Available Human-elephant conflict (HEC is a recurring problem that appears wherever the range of elephants and humans overlap. Different methods including the use of electric fences are used worldwide to mitigate this conflict. Nonetheless, elephants learn quickly that their tusks do not conduct electricity and use them to break down fences (fence-breakers.In Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Kenya, destructive elephants (Loxodonta africana were monitored between 2010 and 2013. The fence-breaking rate reached four incidents (fence-breaking per elephant per 100 days. Ten bull males and 57 females were identified as fence-breakers. The bulls were involved in 85.07% and the females in 14.93% of incidents. The Kenya Wildlife Service approved detusking (partial cutting of tusks in four of the 10 fence-breakers as a way of preventing them from breaking down fences, thereby mitigating HEC in the Conservancy. The result of the detusking was a drastic six-fold reduction in damage to fences (range: 1.67 to 14.5 times less fence-breaking by the four worst fence-breaker elephants, because with trimmed tusks elephants lack the tools to break down fences. Detusking could not totally eliminate fence destruction because, despite lacking their tools, elephants can still destroy fences using their heads, bodies and trunks, albeit less effectively. On the other hand, apart from inherent aesthetic considerations, the detusking of elephants may have certain negative effects on factors such as elephants' social hierarchies, breeding, mate selection and their access to essential minerals and food.Elephant detusking seems to be effective in drastically reducing fence-breaking incidents, nonetheless its negative effects on behaviour, access to food and its aesthetical consequences still need to be further studied and investigated.

  13. Vocal communication in African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soltis, Joseph

    2010-01-01

    Research on vocal communication in African elephants has increased in recent years, both in the wild and in captivity, providing an opportunity to present a comprehensive review of research related to their vocal behavior. Current data indicate that the vocal repertoire consists of perhaps nine acoustically distinct call types, "rumbles" being the most common and acoustically variable. Large vocal production anatomy is responsible for the low-frequency nature of rumbles, with fundamental frequencies in the infrasonic range. Additionally, resonant frequencies of rumbles implicate the trunk in addition to the oral cavity in shaping the acoustic structure of rumbles. Long-distance communication is thought possible because low-frequency sounds propagate more faithfully than high-frequency sounds, and elephants respond to rumbles at distances of up to 2.5 km. Elephant ear anatomy appears designed for detecting low frequencies, and experiments demonstrate that elephants can detect infrasonic tones and discriminate small frequency differences. Two vocal communication functions in the African elephant now have reasonable empirical support. First, closely bonded but spatially separated females engage in rumble exchanges, or "contact calls," that function to coordinate movement or reunite animals. Second, both males and females produce "mate attraction" rumbles that may advertise reproductive states to the opposite sex. Additionally, there is evidence that the structural variation in rumbles reflects the individual identity, reproductive state, and emotional state of callers. Growth in knowledge about the communication system of the African elephant has occurred from a rich combination of research on wild elephants in national parks and captive elephants in zoological parks.

  14. Elephants Can Mimic Traffic and Other Noises

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    James Owen; 刘嘉

    2005-01-01

    @@ It isn't only children playing with toy cars who make engine noises. Elephants produce a similar roar2, though in their case it's the rumble3 of trucks on an African highway that the animals imitate4, scientists say5. The experts behind the discovery say elephants are capable of vocal6 imitation, joining a select group of animals that includes parrots7, songbirds8, dolphins9, and humans.

  15. Asian Heroes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2008-01-01

    China,South Korea and Japan keep Olympic flag flying Atotal of 19 countries and regions of Asia competed at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, winning 86 gold, 54 silver and 72 bronze medals. Their gold medal haul accounted for 28.5 percent of the total 302 gold medals awarded. Of the Asian medal winners, China, Japan and South Korea were the top three accounting for 73 gold medals, and 84.9 percent of all medals won by Asian countries.

  16. How Bees Deter Elephants: Beehive Trials with Forest Elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis) in Gabon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngama, Steeve; Korte, Lisa; Bindelle, Jérôme; Vermeulen, Cédric; Poulsen, John R

    2016-01-01

    In Gabon, like elsewhere in Africa, crops are often sources of conflict between humans and wildlife. Wildlife damage to crops can drastically reduce income, amplifying poverty and creating a negative perception of wild animal conservation among rural people. In this context, crop-raiding animals like elephants quickly become "problem animals". To deter elephants from raiding crops beehives have been successfully employed in East Africa; however, this method has not yet been tested in Central Africa. We experimentally examined whether the presence of Apis mellifera adansonii, the African honey bee species present in Central Africa, deters forest elephants (Loxodonta Africana cyclotis) from feeding on fruit trees. We show for the first time that the effectiveness of beehives as deterrents of elephants is related to bee activity. Empty hives and those housing colonies of low bee activity do not deter elephants all the time; but beehives with high bee activity do. Although elephant disturbance of hives does not impede honey production, there is a tradeoff between deterrence and the quantity of honey produced. To best achieve the dual goals of deterring elephants and producing honey colonies must maintain an optimum activity level of 40 to 60 bee movements per minute. Thus, beehives colonized by Apis mellifera adansonii bees can be effective elephant deterrents, but people must actively manage hives to maintain bee colonies at the optimum activity level.

  17. How Bees Deter Elephants: Beehive Trials with Forest Elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis in Gabon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steeve Ngama

    Full Text Available In Gabon, like elsewhere in Africa, crops are often sources of conflict between humans and wildlife. Wildlife damage to crops can drastically reduce income, amplifying poverty and creating a negative perception of wild animal conservation among rural people. In this context, crop-raiding animals like elephants quickly become "problem animals". To deter elephants from raiding crops beehives have been successfully employed in East Africa; however, this method has not yet been tested in Central Africa. We experimentally examined whether the presence of Apis mellifera adansonii, the African honey bee species present in Central Africa, deters forest elephants (Loxodonta Africana cyclotis from feeding on fruit trees. We show for the first time that the effectiveness of beehives as deterrents of elephants is related to bee activity. Empty hives and those housing colonies of low bee activity do not deter elephants all the time; but beehives with high bee activity do. Although elephant disturbance of hives does not impede honey production, there is a tradeoff between deterrence and the quantity of honey produced. To best achieve the dual goals of deterring elephants and producing honey colonies must maintain an optimum activity level of 40 to 60 bee movements per minute. Thus, beehives colonized by Apis mellifera adansonii bees can be effective elephant deterrents, but people must actively manage hives to maintain bee colonies at the optimum activity level.

  18. Investigating the seismic signal of elephants: using seismology to mitigate elephant human conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, S. J.; Manzi, M.; Naidoo, A.; Raveloson, A.

    2015-12-01

    Human interactions with wild elephants are often a source of conflict, as elephants invade inhabited lands looking for sustenance. In order to mitigate these interactions, a number of elephant defense systems are under development. These include electric fences, bees and the playback of warning calls recorded from elephants. With the discovery that elephants use seismic signals to communicate (O'Connell-Rodwell et al., 2006, Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol.), it is hoped that seismic signals can also be used to help reduce conflict. Our current research project investigates the spectral content of the elephant seismic signal that travels through the ground using a variety of geophones and seismometers. Our experimental setup used a Geometrics Geode 24 channel seismic system with an array of 24 geophones spaced 1 m apart in an area of compact soil overlying weathered granites. Initially we used 14 Hz vertical geophones. The ground and ambient noise conditions were characterized by recording several hammer shots. These were used to identify the air wave, wind noise, and the direct wave, which had a dominant frequency of ~50 Hz. Several trained elephants that 'rumble' on command were then deployed ~5 m perpendicular to a line of 24 (14 Hz) vertical geophones between the 1 and 10 m geophone positions. We recorded a number of different elephants and configurations, and digitally recorded video for comparison. An additional deployment of 20 (14 Hz) horizontal geophones was also used. For all data, the sample interval was 0.25 ms and the recording length was 16 s as the timing of the rumbles could not be precisely controlled. We were able to identify the airwave due to the elephant's rumble with velocities between 305-310 m/s and the ground seismic signal due to the rumble with frequencies between 20-30 Hz. Our next experiment will include broadband seismometers at a further distance, to more fully characterize the frequency content of the elephant signal.

  19. The consequences of poaching and anthropogenic change for forest elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breuer, Thomas; Maisels, Fiona; Fishlock, Vicki

    2016-10-01

    Poaching has devastated forest elephant populations (Loxodonta cyclotis), and their habitat is dramatically changing. The long-term effects of poaching and other anthropogenic threats have been well studied in savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana), but the impacts of these changes for Central Africa's forest elephants have not been discussed. We examined potential repercussions of these threats and the related consequences for forest elephants in Central Africa by summarizing the lessons learned from savannah elephants and small forest elephant populations in West Africa. Forest elephant social organization is less known than the social organization of savannah elephants, but the close evolutionary history of these species suggests that they will respond to anthropogenic threats in broadly similar ways. The loss of older, experienced individuals in an elephant population disrupts ecological, social, and population parameters. Severe reduction of elephant abundance within Central Africa's forests can alter plant communities and ecosystem functions. Poaching, habitat alterations, and human population increase are probably compressing forest elephants into protected areas and increasing human-elephant conflict, which negatively affects their conservation. We encourage conservationists to look beyond documenting forest elephant population decline and address the causes of these declines when developing conversation strategies. We suggest assessing the effectiveness of the existing protected-area networks for landscape connectivity in light of current industrial and infrastructure development. Longitudinal assessments of the effects of landscape changes on forest elephant sociality and behavior are also needed. Finally, lessons learned from West African elephant population loss and habitat fragmentation should be used to inform strategies for land-use planning and managing human-elephant interactions.

  20. Transferrin and Haemoglobin types in the African Elephant (Loxodonta Africana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. R Osterhoff

    1972-01-01

    Full Text Available In a random sample of 84 elephants from the Kruger National Park and five elephants from the Addo Elephant National Park, biochemical polymorphism in the serum transferrins could be established. It seems that elephants in the Kruger and Addo Parks are genetically similar but further studies are indicated to confirm these preliminary findings. For the haemo- globin investigations 109 blood samples were available, all originating from the Kruger National Park and all revealing only one type of haemoglobin.

  1. Prolonged drought results in starvation of African elephant (Loxodonta africana)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wato, Yussuf A.; Heitkonig, Ignas; Wieren, van Sipke E.; Wahungu, Geoffrey; Prins, Herbert H.T.; Langevelde, van Frank

    2016-01-01

    Elephant inhabiting arid and semi-arid savannas often experience periods of drought, which, if prolonged, may cause mortality. During dry periods, elephant aggregate around water sources and deplete local forage availability. However, the relationships between adult elephant mortality and both hi

  2. How tall is an elephant? Two methods for estimating elephant height

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Della Rocca

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Shoulder height is a reliable indicator of age for African elephants (Loxodonta africana, and is therefore an important parameter to be recorded in field studies of population ecology of these pachyderms. However, it can be somewhat difficult to estimate with precision the shoulder height of free-ranging elephants because of several reasons, including the presence of drops and vegetation cover and the potential dangerousness of approaching them in the wild. Here I test two alternative models for estimating shoulder height of elephants. In both models, the equipment needed to generate the height estimates is minimal, and include a telemeter and a digital photo-camera furnished with an ×16 zoom. The models are based respectively on a linear regression approach and on a geometric formula approach, and put into a relationship the linear distance between the observer and the animal, the number of pixels of an elephant silhouette as taken from digital photos, and the absolute height of the animal. Both methods proved to have a very small measurement error, and were thus reliable for field estimates of elephant shoulder heights. The model based on a geometric formula was used to estimate the shoulder height distribution of an elephant population in a savannah region of West Africa (Zakouma National Park, Chad. I demonstrated that Zakouma elephants were among the tallest populations in Africa, with growth rates being highest throughout the first five years of life.

  3. Mitochondrial DNA analysis of two southern African elephant populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.F. Essop

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available The modern view is that there are at most only two valid forms of the African elephant namely Loxodonta qfricana africana, the bush elephant, and L.a. cyclotis, the forest elephant (Ansell 1974; Meester et al. 1986. The Knysna elephant which was also described as a separate sub-species is now almost extinct. Plans to augment the remnant population by introducing other animals must take into account the taxonomic questions and issue of conserving elephant gene pools (Greig 1982a. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA restriction fragment-size comparisons were performed on specimens from the Kruger National Park and the Addo Elephant National Park. If the Addo population's results are extrapolated to the Knysna population, it may be concluded that there is no genetic evidence for the Kruger and Knysna elephant populations to be considered as different sub-species.

  4. What is the use of elephant hair?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Conor L Myhrvold

    Full Text Available The idea that low surface densities of hairs could be a heat loss mechanism is understood in engineering and has been postulated in some thermal studies of animals. However, its biological implications, both for thermoregulation as well as for the evolution of epidermal structures, have not yet been noted. Since early epidermal structures are poorly preserved in the fossil record, we study modern elephants to infer not only the heat transfer effect of present-day sparse hair, but also its potential evolutionary origins. Here we use a combination of theoretical and empirical approaches, and a range of hair densities determined from photographs, to test whether sparse hairs increase convective heat loss from elephant skin, thus serving an intentional evolutionary purpose. Our conclusion is that elephants are covered with hair that significantly enhances their thermoregulation ability by over 5% under all scenarios considered, and by up to 23% at low wind speeds where their thermoregulation needs are greatest. The broader biological significance of this finding suggests that maintaining a low-density hair cover can be evolutionary purposeful and beneficial, which is consistent with the fact that elephants have the greatest need for heat loss of any modern terrestrial animal because of their high body-volume to skin-surface ratio. Elephant hair is the first documented example in nature where increasing heat transfer due to a low hair density covering may be a desirable effect, and therefore raises the possibility of such a covering for similarly sized animals in the past. This elephant example dispels the widely-held assumption that in modern endotherms body hair functions exclusively as an insulator and could therefore be a first step to resolving the prior paradox of why hair was able to evolve in a world much warmer than our own.

  5. Neuronal morphology in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) neocortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Bob; Lubs, Jessica; Hannan, Markus; Anderson, Kaeley; Butti, Camilla; Sherwood, Chet C; Hof, Patrick R; Manger, Paul R

    2011-01-01

    Virtually nothing is known about the morphology of cortical neurons in the elephant. To this end, the current study provides the first documentation of neuronal morphology in frontal and occipital regions of the African elephant (Loxodonta africana). Cortical tissue from the perfusion-fixed brains of two free-ranging African elephants was stained with a modified Golgi technique. Neurons of different types (N=75), with a focus on superficial (i.e., layers II-III) pyramidal neurons, were quantified on a computer-assisted microscopy system using Neurolucida software. Qualitatively, elephant neocortex exhibited large, complex spiny neurons, many of which differed in morphology/orientation from typical primate and rodent pyramidal neurons. Elephant cortex exhibited a V-shaped arrangement of bifurcating apical dendritic bundles. Quantitatively, the dendrites of superficial pyramidal neurons in elephant frontal cortex were more complex than in occipital cortex. In comparison to human supragranular pyramidal neurons, elephant superficial pyramidal neurons exhibited similar overall basilar dendritic length, but the dendritic segments tended to be longer in the elephant with less intricate branching. Finally, elephant aspiny interneurons appeared to be morphologically consistent with other eutherian mammals. The current results thus elaborate on the evolutionary roots of Afrotherian brain organization and highlight unique aspects of neural architecture in elephants.

  6. Supporting elephant conservation in Sri Lanka through MODIS imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, Kithsiri; Tateishi, Ryutaro

    2012-10-01

    The latest national elephant survey of Sri Lanka (2011) revealed Sri Lanka has 5,879 elephants. The total forest cover for these elephants is about 19,500 sq km (2012 estimation) and estimated forest area is about 30% of the country when smaller green patches are also counted. However, studies have pointed out that a herd of elephants need about a 100 sq km of forest patch to survive. With a high human population density (332 people per sq km, 2010), the pressure for land to feed people and elephants is becoming critical. Resent reports have indicated about 250 elephants are killed annually by farmers and dozens of people are also killed by elephants. Under this context, researchers are investigating various methods to assess the elephant movements to address the issues of Human-Elephant-Conflict (HEC). Apart from various local remedies for the issue, the conservation of elephant population can be supported by satellite imagery based studies. MODIS sensor imagery can be considered as a successful candidate here. Its spatial resolution is low (250m x 250m) but automatically filters out small forest patches in the mapping process. The daily imagery helps to monitor temporal forest cover changes. This study investigated the background information of HEC and used MODIS 250m imagery to suggest applicability of satellite data for Elephant conservations efforts. The elephant movement information was gathered from local authorities and potentials to identify bio-corridors were discussed. Under future research steps, regular forest cover monitoring through MODIS data was emphasized as a valuable tool in elephant conservations efforts.

  7. Elephant teeth from the atlantic continental shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitmore, F.C.; Emery, K.O.; Cooke, H.B.S.; Swift, D.J.P.

    1967-01-01

    Teeth of mastodons and mastodons have been recovered by fishermen from at least 40 sites on the continental shelf as deep as 120 meters. Also present are submerged shorelines, peat deposits, lagoonal shells, and relict sands. Evidently elephants and other large mammals ranged this region during the glacial stage of low sea level of the last 25.000 years.

  8. Africa's elephants and rhinos: Flagships in crisis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Western, D

    1987-11-01

    Despite extensive conservation measures over the last two decades, populations of elephants and rhinos in Africa continue to decline. The plight of the black rhino is especially acute. Poaching for rhino horn and ivory, rather than habitat loss, remains the principal threat to these species. The only long-term hope may lie in the effective protection of small, isolated populations.

  9. [The introduction of paddocks in circus elephant husbandry].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid, J; Zeeb, K

    1994-02-01

    The guidelines for the keeping, the education and the using of animals in circuses and similar institutions, which are made in connection with the law for prevention of cruelty to animals, claim to keep elephants daily one hour unshackled in the group in a paddock. This paper deals with the effect of the paddock to the social, the play, and the comfort behaviour, and the stereotyped movements of circus elephants. Basically for the behaviour of kept elephants are results of observations in nature. A pilot study with 29 elephants in four circuses showed that the paddock enabled the elephants to carry out social and comfort behaviour more frequently than in the shackled keeping. The stereotyped movements were nearly absent by keeping the elephants in the paddock. If they keep shackled, this behaviour anomaly will take up much time.

  10. [Keeping of elephants in the zoo and circus].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rietschel, W

    2002-03-01

    There is a decrease in the number of elephants kept in European zoological gardens and circus companies. In the future the import of animals will only be possible for holders which are able to keep family-groups of elephants under species-specific conditions. This will not be possible under circus conditions. This article will describe some problems observed in elephant holdings in zoological gardens and circus companies.

  11. Plasma preparation and storage for African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knauf, Sascha; Blad-Stahl, Julia; Lawrenz, Arne; Schuerer, Ulrich; Wehrend, Axel

    2009-03-01

    The use of plasma as a life-saving tool for neonatal African elephants (Loxodonta africana) that failed passive transfer of immunoglobulins is proposed. The methodology of blood sampling, plasma extraction, and plasma storage is described. Values for cellular component sedimentation and biochemical parameters of extracted plasma that was collected from 2 female elephants is presented. The proposal for a central plasma bank for elephants in European zoos is suggested.

  12. A Comparison of Walking Rates Between Wild and Zoo African Elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Lance J; Chase, Michael J; Hacker, Charlotte E

    2016-01-01

    With increased scrutiny surrounding the welfare of elephants in zoological institutions, it is important to have empirical evidence on their current welfare status. If elephants are not receiving adequate exercise, it could lead to obesity, which can lead to many issues including acyclicity and potentially heart disease. The goal of the current study was to compare the walking rates of elephants in the wild versus elephants in zoos to determine if elephants are walking similar distances relative to their wild counterparts. Eleven wild elephants throughout different habitats and locations in Botswana were compared to 8 elephants at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Direct comparisons revealed no significant difference in average walking rates of zoo elephants when compared with wild elephants. These results suggest that elephants at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park walk similar rates to those of wild elephants and may be meeting their exercise needs.

  13. Application of stereo photogrammetric techniques for measuring African Elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J Hall-Martin

    1979-01-01

    Full Text Available Measurements of shoulder height and back length of African elephants were obtained by means of stereo photogrammetric techniques. A pair of Zeiss UMK 10/1318 cameras, mounted on a steel frame on the back of a vehicle, were used to photograph the elephants in the Addo Elephant National Park, Republic of South Africa. Several modifications of normal photogrammetry procedure applicable to the field situation (eg. control points and the computation of results (eg. relative orientation are briefly mentioned. Six elephants were immobilised after being photographed and the measurements obtained from them agreed within a range of 1 cm-10 cm with the photogrammetric measurements.

  14. Seismic Census Technique for African Elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, J. D.; O'Connell-Rodwell, C. E.; Klemperer, S. L.

    2005-12-01

    Large mammal populations are difficult to census and monitor in remote areas. In particular, elephant populations in Central Africa are difficult to census due to dense forest making aerial surveys impractical. Conservation management would be improved by a census technique that was accurate and precise, did not require large efforts in the field, and could record numbers of animals over a period of time. We report a new detection technique that relies on sensing the footfalls of large mammals. Geophones were used to record the footfalls of elephants and other large mammal species at a water hole in Etosha National Park, Namibia. We were able to discriminate between species using the spectral content of their footfalls with an 85% accuracy rate while only using a single geophone. This was done using correlation coefficients comparing the shape of the spectra for various species. An ANOVA found significant differences between these correlation coefficients (F4,1785 = 147.78, P = 0.000). An estimate of the energy created by passing elephants (the area under the amplitude envelope) can be used to estimate the number of elephants passing the geophone. Our best regression line plotting number of elephants versus energy recorded in the geophone explained 55% of the variance in the data. Much of the unexplained variance is due to the variation in distance from the geophone to the passing elephants. By subjecting the recordings to a narrow band-pass filter and using beamforming techniques on array data, we believe that we can control for the variation in distance between animal and geophones, and thus achieve better estimates of the number of animals passing the array. Using 7 pairs of geophones in a linear array, we offset the pairs of time series to correspond with the time delay associated with the signal intersecting the pair of geophones at increments of 2 degrees. The offset time series were then summed and the RMS value calculated. The largest RMS value was then

  15. Risk and ethical concerns of hunting male elephant: behavioural and physiological assays of the remaining elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tarryne Burke

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Hunting of male African elephants may pose ethical and risk concerns, particularly given their status as a charismatic species of high touristic value, yet which are capable of both killing people and damaging infrastructure. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We quantified the effect of hunts of male elephants on (1 risk of attack or damage (11 hunts, and (2 behavioural (movement dynamics and physiological (stress hormone metabolite concentrations responses (4 hunts in Pilanesberg National Park. For eleven hunts, there were no subsequent attacks on people or infrastructure, and elephants did not break out of the fenced reserve. For three focal hunts, there was an initial flight response by bulls present at the hunting site, but their movements stabilised the day after the hunt event. Animals not present at the hunt (both bulls and herds did not show movement responses. Physiologically, hunting elephant bulls increased faecal stress hormone levels (corticosterone metabolites in both those bulls that were present at the hunts (for up to four days post-hunt and in the broader bull and breeding herd population (for up to one month post-hunt. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: As all responses were relatively minor, hunting male elephants is ethically acceptable when considering effects on the remaining elephant population; however bulls should be hunted when alone. Hunting is feasible in relatively small enclosed reserves without major risk of attack, damage, or breakout. Physiological stress assays were more effective than behavioural responses in detecting effects of human intervention. Similar studies should evaluate intervention consequences, inform and improve best practice, and should be widely applied by management agencies.

  16. Symbolism in Hills Like White Elephants

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    谢倩

    2014-01-01

    Hills Like White Elephants tells a story that happens in a small pub, where the protagonists are waiting for the train to Madrid in order to do the abortion.The thesis highlights the “iceberg theory”which is embodied everywhere in the text. By analyzing the the symbolism in the title, the names and the environment,the charm of the symbolism is well reflected.

  17. Radiation Protection Elephants in the Room

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vetter, R. J.

    2004-07-01

    As our system of radiological protection evolves, several significant issues loom within radiation protection discussions and publications. These issues influence the nature of epidemiological and radiobiological research and the establishment of radiation protection recommendations, standards, and regulations. These issues are like the proverbial ''elephants in the room''. They are large, and it is unwise to ignore them. This paper discusses the impact of three young elephants as they make their presence increasingly obvious: increased cancer susceptibility from early-life exposure to radiation, terrorism and fear of radiation, and patient safety. Increased cancer susceptibility from early-life exposure to radiation is emerging as a discussion topic related to the safety of computed tomography (CT) and other medical modalities. Shortly after publication of CT dose data, manufacturers were helping to reduce doses to children by increasing flexibility for adjustment of technique factors. Also, radiation epidemiological data are being used in the development of guidance on exposure to chemical carcinogens during early life. Re-emergence of public fear of radiation has been fueled by threats of radiological dispersion devises and confusing messages about personal decontamination, emergency room acceptance or rejection of contaminated victims, and environmental clean-up. Finally, several professional publications have characterized risk of medical radiation exposure in terms of patient deaths even though epidemiological data do not support such conclusions. All three of these elephants require excellent science and sophisticated data analysis to coax them from the room. Anecdotal communications that confuse the public should be avoided. These are not the only elephants in the room, but these three are making their presence increasingly obvious. This paper discusses the need for radiation protection professionals to rely on good science in the

  18. Why Do Elephants Flap Their Ears?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koffi, Moise; Jiji, Latif; Andreopoulos, Yiannis

    2009-11-01

    It is estimated that a 4200 kg elephant generates as much as 5.12 kW of heat. How the elephant dissipates its metabolic heat and regulates its body temperature has been investigated during the past seven decades. Findings and conclusions differ sharply. The high rate of metabolic heat coupled with low surface area to volume ratio and the absence of sweat glands eliminate surface convection as the primary mechanism for heat removal. Noting that the elephant ears have high surface area to volume ratio and an extensive vascular network, ear flapping is thought to be the principal thermoregulatory mechanism. A computational and experimental program is carried out to examine flow and heat transfer characteristics. The ear is modeled as a uniformly heated oscillating rectangular plate. Our computational work involves a three-dimensional time dependent CFD code with heat transfer capabilities to obtain predictions of the flow field and surface temperature distributions. This information was used to design an experimental setup with a uniformly heated plate of size 0.2m x 0.3m oscillating at 1.6 cycles per second. Results show that surface temperature increases and reaches a steady periodic oscillation after a period of transient oscillation. The role of the vortices shed off the plate in heat transfer enhancement will be discussed.

  19. Elephants and Their Young: Science and Math Activities for Young Children. Teacher's Guide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Echols, Jean C.; Kopp, Jaine; Blinderman, Ellen

    This book contains a series of playful activities in which young children actively learn about the African elephant's body structure, family life, and social behavior. Children make model elephants out of paper and cardboard, then devise elephant puppets with sock trunks as well as create models of elephant's ears, trunks, tusks, make elephant…

  20. CONDITIONAL ASIAN OPTIONS

    OpenAIRE

    Runhuan Feng; Volkmer, Hans W.

    2015-01-01

    Conditional Asian options are recent market innovations, which offer cheaper and long-dated alternatives to regular Asian options. In contrast with payoffs from regular Asian options which are based on average asset prices, the payoffs from conditional Asian options are determined only by average prices above certain threshold. Due to the limited inclusion of prices, conditional Asian options further reduce the volatility in the payoffs than their regular counterparts and have been promoted i...

  1. Devastating decline of forest elephants in Central Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    F. Maisels; S. Strindberg; S. Blake; G. Wittemyer; J. Hart; E.A. Williamson; R.G. Aba'a; F. Amsini; R.D. Ambahe; P.C. Bakabana; T.C. Hicks; R.E. Bayogo; M. Bechem; R.L. Beyers; A.N. Bezangoye; P. Boundja; N. Bout; M.E. Akou; L.E. Bene; B. Fosso; E. Greengrass; F. Grossmann; C. Ikamba-Nkulu; O. Ilambu; B.I. Inogwabini; F. Iyenguet; F. Kiminou; M. Kokangoye; D. Kujirakwinja; S. Latour; I. Liengola; Q. Mackaya; J. Madidi; B. Madzoke; C. Makoumbou; G.A. Malanda; R. Malonga; O. Mbani; V.A. Mbendzo; E. Ambassa; A. Ekinde; Y. Mihindou; B.J. Morgan; P. Motsaba; G. Moukala; A. Mounguengui; B.S. Mowawa; C. Ndzai; S. Nixon; P. Nkumu; F. Nzolani; L. Pintea; A. Plumptre; H. Rainey; B.B. de Semboli; A. Serckx; E. Stokes; A. Turkalo; H. Vanleeuwe; A. Vosper; Y. Warren

    2013-01-01

    African forest elephants- taxonomically and functionally unique-are being poached at accelerating rates, but we lack range-wide information on the repercussions. Analysis of the largest survey dataset ever assembled for forest elephants (80 foot-surveys; covering 13,000 km; 91,600 person-days of fie

  2. Resisting Elephants Lurking in the Music Education Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regelski, Thomas A.

    2014-01-01

    Music education has many "elephants" in its classrooms: obvious major problems that go unmentioned and suffered silently. Two of the larger, more problematic "elephants" are identified, analyzed, and critiqued: (1) the hegemony of university schools of music on school music and the resulting focus in school music on…

  3. Bee threat elicits alarm call in African elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucy E King

    Full Text Available Unlike the smaller and more vulnerable mammals, African elephants have relatively few predators that threaten their survival. The sound of disturbed African honeybees Apis meliffera scutellata causes African elephants Loxodonta africana to retreat and produce warning vocalizations that lead other elephants to join the flight. In our first experiment, audio playbacks of bee sounds induced elephants to retreat and elicited more head-shaking and dusting, reactive behaviors that may prevent bee stings, compared to white noise control playbacks. Most importantly, elephants produced distinctive "rumble" vocalizations in response to bee sounds. These rumbles exhibited an upward shift in the second formant location, which implies active vocal tract modulation, compared to rumbles made in response to white noise playbacks. In a second experiment, audio playbacks of these rumbles produced in response to bees elicited increased headshaking, and further and faster retreat behavior in other elephants, compared to control rumble playbacks with lower second formant frequencies. These responses to the bee rumble stimuli occurred in the absence of any bees or bee sounds. This suggests that these elephant rumbles may function as referential signals, in which a formant frequency shift alerts nearby elephants about an external threat, in this case, the threat of bees.

  4. Determinants of elephant distribution at Nazinga Game Ranch, Burkina Faso

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenks, Jonathan A.; Klaver, Robert W.; Wicks, Zeno W.

    2007-01-01

    We used seasonal ground total counts and remote sensing and GIS technology to relate elephant (Loxodonta africana africana) distribution at Nazinga Game Ranch to environmental and anthropogenic factors. Variables used in analyses were normalized difference vegetation index, elevation, stream density, density of poaching and human illegal activities, distance to dams, distance to rivers, distance to roads, and distance to poaching risk. Contrary to our expectation, road traffic did not disturb elephants. Strong negative relationships were documented between elephant abundance and stream density, distance to dams, and poaching density. Density of poaching and other human illegal activities explained 81%, vegetation greenness 6%, and stream density 3% of the variation in elephant density. Elephant distribution represented a survival strategy affected by poaching, food quality and abundance, and water availability. 

  5. Why Was the Elephant Late in Getting on the Ark? Elephant Riddles and Other Jokes in the Classroom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazemek, Francis E.

    1999-01-01

    Discusses why elephant riddles are viable catalysts for word play and language development in the primary grades. Explores some relationships between children's thinking and elephant riddles. Offers some suggestions for incorporating them as a regular part of the classroom flow. (SR)

  6. "The Elephant in the Dark Room": Merrick and Menacing Mimicry in Bernard Pomerance's "The Elephant Man"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasani, Samira

    2015-01-01

    This paper tries to look at Pomerance's "The Elephant Man," from a new perspective from which no critic has investigated the play, before. Applying postcolonial theory of Homi K. Bhabha to the play, the author scrutinizes how "mimicry strategy", employed by the colonizer and the Other, can be threatening for both and how the…

  7. The influence of the African Elephant on the vegetation of the Addo Elephant National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B.L. Penzhorn

    1974-07-01

    Full Text Available An increasing elephant Loxodonta africana population has been confined to a 2 770 ha enclosure since 1954. When compared to the vegetation adjacent to the enclosure, the plant biomass within has been reduced by more than one half. Changes in the botanical composition are described.

  8. Salient features in locomotor evolutionary adaptations of proboscideans revealed via the differential scaling of limb long bones

    OpenAIRE

    2009-01-01

    The standard differential scaling of proportions in limb long bones (length against circumference) is applied to a phylogenetically wide sample of the Proboscidea, Elephantidae and the Asian (Elephas maximus) and African elephant (Loxodonta africana). In order to investigate allometric patterns in proboscideans and terrestrial mammals with parasagittal limb kinematics, the computed slopes (slenderness exponents) are compared with published values for mammals and studied within a framework of ...

  9. Obesity and Asian Americans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... and Data > Minority Population Profiles > Asian American > Obesity Obesity and Asian Americans Non-Hispanic whites are 60% ... youthonline . [Accessed 05/25/2016] HEALTH IMPACT OF OBESITY More than 80 percent of people with type ...

  10. Will elephants soon disappear from West African savannahs?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouché, Philippe; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Wittemyer, George; Nianogo, Aimé J; Doucet, Jean-Louis; Lejeune, Philippe; Vermeulen, Cédric

    2011-01-01

    Precipitous declines in Africa's native fauna and flora are recognized, but few comprehensive records of these changes have been compiled. Here, we present population trends for African elephants in the 6,213,000 km² Sudano-Sahelian range of West and Central Africa assessed through the analysis of aerial and ground surveys conducted over the past 4 decades. These surveys are focused on the best protected areas in the region, and therefore represent the best case scenario for the northern savanna elephants. A minimum of 7,745 elephants currently inhabit the entire region, representing a minimum decline of 50% from estimates four decades ago for these protected areas. Most of the historic range is now devoid of elephants and, therefore, was not surveyed. Of the 23 surveyed elephant populations, half are estimated to number less than 200 individuals. Historically, most populations numbering less than 200 individuals in the region were extirpated within a few decades. Declines differed by region, with Central African populations experiencing much higher declines (-76%) than those in West Africa (-33%). As a result, elephants in West Africa now account for 86% of the total surveyed. Range wide, two refuge zones retain elephants, one in West and the other in Central Africa. These zones are separated by a large distance (∼900 km) of high density human land use, suggesting connectivity between the regions is permanently cut. Within each zone, however, sporadic contacts between populations remain. Retaining such connectivity should be a high priority for conservation of elephants in this region. Specific corridors designed to reduce the isolation of the surveyed populations are proposed. The strong commitment of governments, effective law enforcement to control the illegal ivory trade and the involvement of local communities and private partners are all critical to securing the future of elephants inhabiting Africa's northern savannas.

  11. Entomogenous nematodes: a field study for biological control of Curculio elephas Gyl. (Coleoptera Curculionidae); Nematodi entomoparassiti: una prova di impiego in campo della lotta contro il balanino del castagno, Curculio elephas Gyl. (Coleoptera Curculionidae)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rapagnani, M.R.; Caffarelli, V.; Letardi, A.; Barlattani, M. [ENEA, Centro Ricerche Casaccia, Rome (Italy). Dipt. Innovazione; Lazzari, L.; Ruggeri, L. [BIOERRE, Crespellano, Bologna (Italy); Lelli, L.

    1999-02-01

    Biological control of chestnut weevil (Curculio elephas Gyl.) using entomogenous nematodes (Steinernematidae and Heterorhabditidae) was investigated under field conditions. Experiments of infectivity, soil persistence and mobility of the infective juveniles stage of the nematodes were carried out through laboratory tests. Experimental results on developing infectivity process if entomogenous nematodes, have shown both inhibition at low temperature (average value 12 C) and mechanic barrier of weevil pupal envelope. Use of dispersal media as water or peat, was not relevant on experimental results. Further researches are required to test low temperature-resistant strain. [Italiano] Vengono riportati i risultati di uno studio di lotta biologica contro il balanino del castagno (Curculio elephas Gyl.) realizzato utilizzando ceppi di nematodi entomoparassiti (Steinernematidae and Heterorhabditidae). Sono stati monitorati, in campo, l`andamento dell`infestazione del balanino del castagno, l`efficacia del trattamento e l`andamento della temperatura sia climatica che nel terreno a due diverse profondita`. Nel corso dello studio e` stata controllata periodicamente, con prove di laboratorio, la persistenza nel terreno e la capacita` infettiva dei nematodi utilizzati. Lo studio ha messo in evidenza la difficolta` da parte dei nematodi di esplicare la propria azione di entomoparassiti in condizioni di temperatura media attorno ai 12 C e di superare la barriera fisica operata dalla celletta entro cui si impupa il balanino. Il mezzo utilizzato per la dispersione dei nematodi (acqua o torba) risulta essere indifferente rispetto al risultato ottenuto. L`esperienza ha evidenziato l`interesse, in questo tipo di lotta, alla sperimentazione di ceppi di nematodi resistenti alle basse temperature.

  12. Random recursive trees and the elephant random walk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kürsten, Rüdiger

    2016-03-01

    One class of random walks with infinite memory, so-called elephant random walks, are simple models describing anomalous diffusion. We present a surprising connection between these models and bond percolation on random recursive trees. We use a coupling between the two models to translate results from elephant random walks to the percolation process. We calculate, besides other quantities, exact expressions for the first and the second moment of the root cluster size and of the number of nodes in child clusters of the first generation. We further introduce another model, the skew elephant random walk, and calculate the first and second moment of this process.

  13. Rogue-Elephant-Inflicted Panfacial Injuries: A Rare Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santosh Kumar Yadav

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Attacks by elephants, the largest of the “large animals,” produce many fatalities a year. Most attacks are provoked, although rogue elephants are occasionally responsible. Trampling, goring, tossing the individual with the trunk, or crushing with the knees produces the injuries. Injuries from encounters with large animals represent a significant health risk for rural communities. Wild-animal-inflicted maxillofacial injuries are rare, and limited literature is available describing their management. We present a case of severe maxillofacial injuries caused by the attack of a rogue elephant.

  14. The Elephant Vanishes: impact of human-elephant conflict on people's wellbeing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jadhav, Sushrut; Barua, Maan

    2012-11-01

    Human-wildlife conflicts impact upon the wellbeing of marginalised people, worldwide. Although tangible losses from such conflicts are well documented, hidden health consequences remain under-researched. Based on preliminary clinical ethnographic inquiries and sustained fieldwork in Assam, India, this paper documents mental health antecedents and consequences including severe untreated psychiatric morbidity and substance abuse. The case studies presented make visible the hidden mental health dimensions of human-elephant conflict. The paper illustrates how health impacts of conflicts penetrate far deeper than immediate physical threat from elephants, worsens pre-existing mental illness of marginalised people, and leads to newer psychiatric and social pathologies. These conflicts are enacted and perpetuated in institutional spaces of inequality. The authors argue that both wildlife conservation and community mental health disciplines would be enhanced by coordinated intervention. The paper concludes by generating questions that are fundamental for a new interdisciplinary paradigm that bridges ecology and the clinic.

  15. Devastating decline of forest elephants in central Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maisels, Fiona; Strindberg, Samantha; Blake, Stephen; Wittemyer, George; Hart, John; Williamson, Elizabeth A; Aba'a, Rostand; Abitsi, Gaspard; Ambahe, Ruffin D; Amsini, Fidèl; Bakabana, Parfait C; Hicks, Thurston Cleveland; Bayogo, Rosine E; Bechem, Martha; Beyers, Rene L; Bezangoye, Anicet N; Boundja, Patrick; Bout, Nicolas; Akou, Marc Ella; Bene, Lambert Bene; Fosso, Bernard; Greengrass, Elizabeth; Grossmann, Falk; Ikamba-Nkulu, Clement; Ilambu, Omari; Inogwabini, Bila-Isia; Iyenguet, Fortune; Kiminou, Franck; Kokangoye, Max; Kujirakwinja, Deo; Latour, Stephanie; Liengola, Innocent; Mackaya, Quevain; Madidi, Jacob; Madzoke, Bola; Makoumbou, Calixte; Malanda, Guy-Aimé; Malonga, Richard; Mbani, Olivier; Mbendzo, Valentin A; Ambassa, Edgar; Ekinde, Albert; Mihindou, Yves; Morgan, Bethan J; Motsaba, Prosper; Moukala, Gabin; Mounguengui, Anselme; Mowawa, Brice S; Ndzai, Christian; Nixon, Stuart; Nkumu, Pele; Nzolani, Fabian; Pintea, Lilian; Plumptre, Andrew; Rainey, Hugo; de Semboli, Bruno Bokoto; Serckx, Adeline; Stokes, Emma; Turkalo, Andrea; Vanleeuwe, Hilde; Vosper, Ashley; Warren, Ymke

    2013-01-01

    African forest elephants- taxonomically and functionally unique-are being poached at accelerating rates, but we lack range-wide information on the repercussions. Analysis of the largest survey dataset ever assembled for forest elephants (80 foot-surveys; covering 13,000 km; 91,600 person-days of fieldwork) revealed that population size declined by ca. 62% between 2002-2011, and the taxon lost 30% of its geographical range. The population is now less than 10% of its potential size, occupying less than 25% of its potential range. High human population density, hunting intensity, absence of law enforcement, poor governance, and proximity to expanding infrastructure are the strongest predictors of decline. To save the remaining African forest elephants, illegal poaching for ivory and encroachment into core elephant habitat must be stopped. In addition, the international demand for ivory, which fuels illegal trade, must be dramatically reduced.

  16. Devastating decline of forest elephants in central Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fiona Maisels

    Full Text Available African forest elephants- taxonomically and functionally unique-are being poached at accelerating rates, but we lack range-wide information on the repercussions. Analysis of the largest survey dataset ever assembled for forest elephants (80 foot-surveys; covering 13,000 km; 91,600 person-days of fieldwork revealed that population size declined by ca. 62% between 2002-2011, and the taxon lost 30% of its geographical range. The population is now less than 10% of its potential size, occupying less than 25% of its potential range. High human population density, hunting intensity, absence of law enforcement, poor governance, and proximity to expanding infrastructure are the strongest predictors of decline. To save the remaining African forest elephants, illegal poaching for ivory and encroachment into core elephant habitat must be stopped. In addition, the international demand for ivory, which fuels illegal trade, must be dramatically reduced.

  17. Volumetric analysis of the African elephant ventricular system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maskeo, Busisiwe C; Spocter, Muhammed A; Haagensen, Mark; Manger, Paul R

    2011-08-01

    This study used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to determine the volume of the ventricular system in the brain of three adult male African elephants (Loxodonta africana). The ventricular system of the elephant has a volume of ∼240 mL, an order of magnitude larger than that seen in the adult human. Despite this large size, allometric analysis indicates that the volume of the ventricles in the elephant is what one would expect for a mammal with an ∼5 kg brain. Interestingly, our comparison with other mammals revealed that primates appear to have small relative ventricular volumes, and that megachiropterans and microchiropterans follow different scaling rules when comparing ventricular volume to brain mass indicating separate phylogenetic histories. The current study provides context for one aspect of the elephant brain in the broader picture of mammalian brain evolution.

  18. Describing the Elephant: Framing a Discussion on Command and Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-01

    July–August 2014 Air & Space Power Journal | 17 From the Guest Editor Describing the Elephant Framing a Discussion on Command and Control Col Henry...DATE JUL 2014 2. REPORT TYPE 3. DATES COVERED 00-00-2014 to 00-00-2014 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Describing the Elephant: Framing a Discussion on...path ahead for better understanding and op- erational performance in this complex core function. To move down this path requires a common frame of

  19. The elephants of Gash-Barka, Eritrea: nuclear and mitochondrial genetic patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, Adam L; Hagos, Yohannes; Yacob, Yohannes; David, Victor A; Georgiadis, Nicholas J; Shoshani, Jeheskel; Roca, Alfred L

    2014-01-01

    Eritrea has one of the northernmost populations of African elephants. Only about 100 elephants persist in the Gash-Barka administrative zone. Elephants in Eritrea have become completely isolated, with no gene flow from other elephant populations. The conservation of Eritrean elephants would benefit from an understanding of their genetic affinities to elephants elsewhere on the continent and the degree to which genetic variation persists in the population. Using dung samples from Eritrean elephants, we examined 18 species-diagnostic single nucleotide polymorphisms in 3 nuclear genes, sequences of mitochondrial HVR1 and ND5, and genotyped 11 microsatellite loci. The sampled Eritrean elephants carried nuclear and mitochondrial DNA markers establishing them as savanna elephants, with closer genetic affinity to Eastern than to North Central savanna elephant populations, and contrary to speculation by some scholars that forest elephants were found in Eritrea. Mitochondrial DNA diversity was relatively low, with 2 haplotypes unique to Eritrea predominating. Microsatellite genotypes could only be determined for a small number of elephants but suggested that the population suffers from low genetic diversity. Conservation efforts should aim to protect Eritrean elephants and their habitat in the short run, with restoration of habitat connectivity and genetic diversity as long-term goals.

  20. Positive reinforcement training for a trunk wash in Nepal's working elephants: demonstrating alternatives to traditional elephant training techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagen, Ariel; Acharya, Narayan; Kaufman, Gretchen E

    2014-01-01

    Many trainers of animals in the zoo now rely on positive reinforcement training to teach animals to voluntarily participate in husbandry and veterinary procedures in an effort to improve behavioral reliability, captive management, and welfare. However, captive elephant handlers in Nepal still rely heavily on punishment- and aversion-based methods. The aim of this project was to determine the effectiveness of secondary positive reinforcement (SPR) in training free-contact elephants in Nepal to voluntarily participate in a trunk wash for the purpose of tuberculosis testing. Five female elephants, 4 juveniles and 1 adult, were enrolled in the project. Data were collected in the form of minutes of training, number of offers made for each training task, and success rate for each task in performance tests. Four out of 5 elephants, all juveniles, successfully learned the trunk wash in 35 sessions or fewer, with each session lasting a mean duration of 12 min. The elephants' performance improved from a mean success rate of 39.0% to 89.3% during the course of the training. This study proves that it is feasible to efficiently train juvenile, free-contact, traditionally trained elephants in Nepal to voluntarily and reliably participate in a trunk wash using only SPR techniques.

  1. Continent-wide survey reveals massive decline in African savannah elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chase, Michael J; Schlossberg, Scott; Griffin, Curtice R; Bouché, Philippe J C; Djene, Sintayehu W; Elkan, Paul W; Ferreira, Sam; Grossman, Falk; Kohi, Edward Mtarima; Landen, Kelly; Omondi, Patrick; Peltier, Alexis; Selier, S A Jeanetta; Sutcliffe, Robert

    2016-01-01

    African elephants (Loxodonta africana) are imperiled by poaching and habitat loss. Despite global attention to the plight of elephants, their population sizes and trends are uncertain or unknown over much of Africa. To conserve this iconic species, conservationists need timely, accurate data on elephant populations. Here, we report the results of the Great Elephant Census (GEC), the first continent-wide, standardized survey of African savannah elephants. We also provide the first quantitative model of elephant population trends across Africa. We estimated a population of 352,271 savannah elephants on study sites in 18 countries, representing approximately 93% of all savannah elephants in those countries. Elephant populations in survey areas with historical data decreased by an estimated 144,000 from 2007 to 2014, and populations are currently shrinking by 8% per year continent-wide, primarily due to poaching. Though 84% of elephants occurred in protected areas, many protected areas had carcass ratios that indicated high levels of elephant mortality. Results of the GEC show the necessity of action to end the African elephants' downward trajectory by preventing poaching and protecting habitat.

  2. Biophysical and human factors determine the distribution of poached elephants in Tsavo East National Park, Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kyale, D.M.; Ngene, S.M.; Maingi, J.

    2011-01-01

    This study investigates the distribution of poached elephants as well as the biophysical and anthropogenic factors that determine the distribution of the poached elephants in Tsavo East National Park (TENP), Kenya. Data on the distribution of poached elephants, from 1990 to 2005, were acquired from

  3. 78 FR 690 - Guidelines for the Control of Tuberculosis in Elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-04

    ... Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Guidelines for the Control of Tuberculosis in Elephants AGENCY... regulations as related to elephant tuberculosis as well as to aid users in their compliance with those... Tuberculosis in Elephants'' developed by The National Tuberculosis Working Group for Zoo and Wildlife...

  4. Notes on the chemical immobilisation and restraint of the Addo Elephant (Loxodonta Africana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E Young

    1972-01-01

    Full Text Available The physiological response of Addo elephants (Loxo- donta africana to etorphine hydrochloride (M-99 and acetylpromazine maleate is discussed. As in the case of Kruger National Park elephants, the described dosage rates of drugs are highly effective for safe anaesthesia of these elephants.

  5. Elephant distribution around a volcanic shield dominated by a mosaic of forest and savanna (Marsabit, Kenya)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ngene, S.M.; Skidmore, A.K.; Gils, H.; Douglas-Hamilton, I.; Omondi, P.

    2009-01-01

    We investigated the factors that influenced the distribution of the African elephant around a volcanic shield dominated by a mosaic of forest and savanna in northern Kenya. Data on elephant distribution were acquired from four female and five bull elephants, collared with satellite-linked geographic

  6. Elephant-mediated habitat modifications and changes in herbivore species assemblages in Sabi Sand, South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Oort, van J.W.A.; Grover, M.; Peel, M.J.S.

    2015-01-01

    Elephant Loxodonta africana conservation might indirectly influence the wider herbivore community structure, as elephants have the ability to significantly modify the savanna habitat. Uncertainty remains as to the consequences of these effects, as elephants might either compete with other species or

  7. African elephant in a cleft stick : choosing between starving or dying from thirst in arid savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wato, Yussuf

    2016-01-01

    Elephant population studies have become important especially because of the long standing perception that high elephant densities have negative impact on vegetation and other wildlife species. Thus, in areas of high elephant density, managers attempt to re-distribute them or keep their numbers low t

  8. 西双版纳亚洲象肇事原因分析及缓解对策探讨%Causes and Mitigating Strategies for Human-Elephant Conflicts in Xishuangbanna Prefecture

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    郭贤明; 杨正斌; 王兰新; 赵建伟

    2012-01-01

    针对西双版纳人象冲突日益严重的现象,通过实地调查、数据收集整理、村寨访谈等方法,分析了1991~2010年间以亚洲象为主的野生动物为害情况.分析认为,天然林下食物减少、栖息地孤岛效应、环境容量不足、亚洲象取食习性改变、人为伤害引发的报复行为、补偿不足和思小高速公路阻隔等是造成人象冲突的主要原因.藉此提出加强生物廊道建设,开展合理的土地利用规划,进行适当的产业结构调整,加强栖息地保护,提高损失补偿额度,开展以观象为主的生态旅游活动和建立亚洲象保护管理信息系统等对策.%Human-Elephant Conflict (HEC) is a serious problem to the Asian elephant conservation in Xishuangbanna. Wildlife damage cases mainly in the Asian elephant have been analyzed in this paper based on data from field observations, community interviews and other data of varied sources since 1991. The results showed that the main reason caused HEC including the decrease of natural food, habitat isolation, low carrying capacity, diet change, revenge of elephant, and the disturbance oflarge infrastructures etc. It was suggested that the HEC mitigation strategies should include the establishment of ecological corridors, regional land-use planning, adjustment of industrial structure, the promotion of habitat protection, the increase of compensation to crop damages caused by elephant, introduction of elephant-watching eco-tourism, as well as introduction of the protected area monitoring information system (MIST) for elephants conservation.

  9. The spatial scaling of habitat selection by African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Knegt, Henrik J; van Langevelde, Frank; Skidmore, Andrew K; Delsink, Audrey; Slotow, Rob; Henley, Steve; Bucini, Gabriela; de Boer, Willem F; Coughenour, Michael B; Grant, Cornelia C; Heitkönig, Ignas M A; Henley, Michelle; Knox, Nicky M; Kohi, Edward M; Mwakiwa, Emmanuel; Page, Bruce R; Peel, Mike; Pretorius, Yolanda; van Wieren, Sipke E; Prins, Herbert H T

    2011-01-01

    1. Understanding and accurately predicting the spatial patterns of habitat use by organisms is important for ecological research, biodiversity conservation and ecosystem management. However, this understanding is complicated by the effects of spatial scale, because the scale of analysis affects the quantification of species-environment relationships. 2. We therefore assessed the influence of environmental context (i.e. the characteristics of the landscape surrounding a site), varied over a large range of scales (i.e. ambit radii around focal sites), on the analysis and prediction of habitat selection by African elephants in Kruger National Park, South Africa. 3. We focused on the spatial scaling of the elephants' response to their main resources, forage and water, and found that the quantification of habitat selection strongly depended on the scales at which environmental context was considered. Moreover, the inclusion of environmental context at characteristic scales (i.e. those at which habitat selectivity was maximized) increased the predictive capacity of habitat suitability models. 4. The elephants responded to their environment in a scale-dependent and perhaps hierarchical manner, with forage characteristics driving habitat selection at coarse spatial scales, and surface water at fine spatial scales. 5. Furthermore, the elephants exhibited sexual habitat segregation, mainly in relation to vegetation characteristics. Male elephants preferred areas with high tree cover and low herbaceous biomass, whereas this pattern was reversed for female elephants. 6. We show that the spatial distribution of elephants can be better understood and predicted when scale-dependent species-environment relationships are explicitly considered. This demonstrates the importance of considering the influence of spatial scale on the analysis of spatial patterning in ecological phenomena.

  10. Architectural organization of the african elephant diencephalon and brainstem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maseko, Busisiwe C; Patzke, Nina; Fuxe, Kjell; Manger, Paul R

    2013-01-01

    The current study examined the organization of the diencephalon and brainstem of the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) - a region of the elephant brain that has not been examined for at least 50 years. The current description, employing material amenable for use with modern neuroanatomical methods, shows that, for the most part, the elephant diencephalon and brainstem are what could be considered typically mammalian, with subtle differences in proportions and topology. The variations from these previous descriptions, where they occurred, were related to four specific aspects of neural information processing: (1) the motor systems, (2) the auditory and vocalization systems, (3) the orexinergic satiety/wakefulness centre of the hypothalamus and the locus coeruleus, and (4) the potential neurogenic lining of the brainstem. For the motor systems, three specific structures exhibited interesting differences in organization - the pars compacta of the substantia nigra, the facial motor nerve nucleus, and the inferior olivary nuclear complex, all related to the timing and learning of movements and likely related to the control of the trunk. The dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra appear to form distinct islands separated from each other by large fibre pathways, an appearance unique to the elephant. Each island may send topologically organized projections to the striatum forming a dopaminergic innervation mosaic that may relate to trunk movements. At least five regions of the combined vocalization production and auditory/seismic reception system were specialized, including the large and distinct nucleus ellipticus of the periaqueductal grey matter, the enlarged lateral superior olivary nucleus, the novel transverse infrageniculate nucleus of the dorsal thalamus, the enlarged dorsal column nuclei and the ventral posterior inferior nucleus of the dorsal thalamus. These specializations, related to production and reception of infrasound, allow the proposal of a

  11. Interpretation of human pointing by African elephants: generalisation and rationality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smet, Anna F; Byrne, Richard W

    2014-11-01

    Factors influencing the abilities of different animals to use cooperative social cues from humans are still unclear, in spite of long-standing interest in the topic. One of the few species that have been found successful at using human pointing is the African elephant (Loxodonta africana); despite few opportunities for learning about pointing, elephants follow a pointing gesture in an object-choice task, even when the pointing signal and experimenter's body position are in conflict, and when the gesture itself is visually subtle. Here, we show that the success of captive African elephants at using human pointing is not restricted to situations where the pointing signal is sustained until the time of choice: elephants followed human pointing even when the pointing gesture was withdrawn before they had responded to it. Furthermore, elephants rapidly generalised their response to a type of social cue they were unlikely to have seen before: pointing with the foot. However, unlike young children, they showed no sign of evaluating the 'rationality' of this novel pointing gesture according to its visual context: that is, whether the experimenter's hands were occupied or not.

  12. Should humans interfere in the lives of elephants?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.P.P. Lötter

    2005-07-01

    Full Text Available Culling seems to be a cruel method of human interference in the lives of elephants. Culling is generally used to control population numbers of highly developed mammals to protect vegetation and habitat for other species. Many people are against human interference in the lives of elephants. In this article aspects of this highly controversial issue are explored. Three fascinating characteristics of this ethical dilemma are discussed in the introductory part, and then the major arguments raised against human interference in the lives of elephants are evaluated. These arguments are the following: First, that nature should be allowed to run its course and establish its own balance; nature will thus solve the problem of elephant over-population. The second argument raised by animal-rights activists as well as by animal-welfare groups either claim that animals have rights that humans must respect at all times, or that all sentient beings have interests that humans ought to respect, as those beings can experience pleasure or pain. The third argument often associates culling elephants as method for population control with the commercial use and exploitation of wilderness areas. Many people argue that it is unethical to use wildlife as a sustainable resource for fighting poverty. In conclusion it is stated that despite these arguments human

  13. Diagnosis of Tuberculosis in Three Zoo Elephants and a Human Contact - Oregon, 2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zlot, Amy; Vines, Jennifer; Nystrom, Laura; Lane, Lindsey; Behm, Heidi; Denny, Justin; Finnegan, Mitch; Hostetler, Trevor; Matthews, Gloria; Storms, Tim; DeBess, Emilio

    2016-01-08

    In 2013, public health officials in Multnomah County, Oregon, started an investigation of a tuberculosis (TB) outbreak among elephants and humans at a local zoo. The investigation ultimately identified three bull elephants with active TB and 118 human contacts of the elephants. Ninety-six (81%) contacts were evaluated, and seven close contacts were found to have latent TB infection. The three bulls were isolated and treated (elephants with TB typically are not euthanized) to prevent infection of other animals and humans, and persons with latent infection were offered treatment. Improved TB screening methods for elephants are needed to prevent exposure of human contacts.

  14. An assessment of human-elephant conflict and associated ecological and demographic factors in Nilambur, Western Ghats of Kerala, southern India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. K. Rohini

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Elephant conservation carries cost in the form of human-elephant conflict and affects the wellbeing of people living near ecologically important areas.  Conflicts impart serious challenges towards the survival of Asian Elephants, which are categorized as Endangered in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.  Issues of wildlife conservation are least addressed in areas with less restricted categories of protection.  Hence an attempt was made to evaluate the intensity of elephant conflict and factors associated with its occurrence in villages with forest fringes of North and South Forest Divisions of Nilambur, Kerala, southern India.  It was hypothesized that variables such as number of houses, area of village, livestock population, forest frontage, and presence of water source along the forest boundary abutting the village to be the underlying correlates of conflict.  Field studies were conducted fortnightly from June 2014 to May 2015, by visiting farms and households of 17 selected forest fringe villages.  Observational methods, questionnaire surveys and secondary data collection were employed for this purpose.  A total of 277 incidents of crop depredation, 12 incidents of property damage, three human injuries, and one human death due to conflict were recorded during this period.  Crop raiding was highest during post monsoon season and it was low during pre-monsoon and monsoon seasons.  Multiple linear regression results suggest that forest frontage and livestock population were significant predictors of conflict incidence.  Information regarding the prime causes of conflict will be helpful for planning strategies for the establishment of appropriate mitigation methods.  The present study serves as baseline information which will be helpful for formulating prospective management plans.

  15. Quantity and configuration of available elephant habitat and related conservation concerns in the Lower Kinabatangan floodplain of Sabah, Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estes, Jason G; Othman, Nurzhafarina; Ismail, Sulaiman; Ancrenaz, Marc; Goossens, Benoit; Ambu, Laurentius N; Estes, Anna B; Palmiotto, Peter A

    2012-01-01

    The approximately 300 (298, 95% CI: 152-581) elephants in the Lower Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo are a priority sub-population for Borneo's total elephant population (2,040, 95% CI: 1,184-3,652). Habitat loss and human-elephant conflict are recognized as the major threats to Bornean elephant survival. In the Kinabatangan region, human settlements and agricultural development for oil palm drive an intense fragmentation process. Electric fences guard against elephant crop raiding but also remove access to suitable habitat patches. We conducted expert opinion-based least-cost analyses, to model the quantity and configuration of available suitable elephant habitat in the Lower Kinabatangan, and called this the Elephant Habitat Linkage. At 184 km(2), our estimate of available habitat is 54% smaller than the estimate used in the State's Elephant Action Plan for the Lower Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range (400 km(2)). During high flood levels, available habitat is reduced to only 61 km(2). As a consequence, short-term elephant densities are likely to surge during floods to 4.83 km(-2) (95% CI: 2.46-9.41), among the highest estimated for forest-dwelling elephants in Asia or Africa. During severe floods, the configuration of remaining elephant habitat and the surge in elephant density may put two villages at elevated risk of human-elephant conflict. Lower Kinabatangan elephants are vulnerable to the natural disturbance regime of the river due to their limited dispersal options. Twenty bottlenecks less than one km wide throughout the Elephant Habitat Linkage, have the potential to further reduce access to suitable habitat. Rebuilding landscape connectivity to isolated habitat patches and to the North Kinabatangan Managed Elephant Range (less than 35 km inland) are conservation priorities that would increase the quantity of available habitat, and may work as a mechanism to allow population release, lower elephant density, reduce human-elephant

  16. The evolution and phylogeography of the African elephant inferred from mitochondrial DNA sequence and nuclear microsatellite markers.

    OpenAIRE

    Eggert, Lori S.; Rasner, Caylor A; Woodruff, David S.

    2002-01-01

    Recent genetic results support the recognition of two African elephant species: Loxodonta africana, the savannah elephant, and Loxodonta cyclotis, the forest elephant. The study, however, did not include the populations of West Africa, where the taxonomic affinities of elephants have been much debated. We examined mitochondrial cytochrome b control region sequences and four microsatellite loci to investigate the genetic differences between the forest and savannah elephants of West and Central...

  17. Continent-wide survey reveals massive decline in African savannah elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J. Chase

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available African elephants (Loxodonta africana are imperiled by poaching and habitat loss. Despite global attention to the plight of elephants, their population sizes and trends are uncertain or unknown over much of Africa. To conserve this iconic species, conservationists need timely, accurate data on elephant populations. Here, we report the results of the Great Elephant Census (GEC, the first continent-wide, standardized survey of African savannah elephants. We also provide the first quantitative model of elephant population trends across Africa. We estimated a population of 352,271 savannah elephants on study sites in 18 countries, representing approximately 93% of all savannah elephants in those countries. Elephant populations in survey areas with historical data decreased by an estimated 144,000 from 2007 to 2014, and populations are currently shrinking by 8% per year continent-wide, primarily due to poaching. Though 84% of elephants occurred in protected areas, many protected areas had carcass ratios that indicated high levels of elephant mortality. Results of the GEC show the necessity of action to end the African elephants’ downward trajectory by preventing poaching and protecting habitat.

  18. Continent-wide survey reveals massive decline in African savannah elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlossberg, Scott; Griffin, Curtice R.; Bouché, Philippe J.C.; Djene, Sintayehu W.; Elkan, Paul W.; Ferreira, Sam; Grossman, Falk; Kohi, Edward Mtarima; Landen, Kelly; Omondi, Patrick; Peltier, Alexis; Selier, S.A. Jeanetta; Sutcliffe, Robert

    2016-01-01

    African elephants (Loxodonta africana) are imperiled by poaching and habitat loss. Despite global attention to the plight of elephants, their population sizes and trends are uncertain or unknown over much of Africa. To conserve this iconic species, conservationists need timely, accurate data on elephant populations. Here, we report the results of the Great Elephant Census (GEC), the first continent-wide, standardized survey of African savannah elephants. We also provide the first quantitative model of elephant population trends across Africa. We estimated a population of 352,271 savannah elephants on study sites in 18 countries, representing approximately 93% of all savannah elephants in those countries. Elephant populations in survey areas with historical data decreased by an estimated 144,000 from 2007 to 2014, and populations are currently shrinking by 8% per year continent-wide, primarily due to poaching. Though 84% of elephants occurred in protected areas, many protected areas had carcass ratios that indicated high levels of elephant mortality. Results of the GEC show the necessity of action to end the African elephants’ downward trajectory by preventing poaching and protecting habitat. PMID:27635327

  19. Ovarian cycle activity varies with respect to age and social status in free-ranging elephants in Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Elizabeth W; Meyer, Jordana M; Putman, Sarah B; Schulte, Bruce A; Brown, Janine L

    2013-01-01

    Free-ranging African elephants live in a fission-fusion society, at the centre of which is the matriarch. Matriarchs are generally older females that guide their families to resources and co-ordinate group defense. While much is known about elephant society, knowledge is generally lacking about how age affects the physiology of wild elephants. Investigation of the ovarian activity of free-ranging elephants could provide insight into the reproductive ageing process, with implications for population management. Faecal samples were collected from 46 individuals ranging in age from 14 to 60 years for a 2-year period, and progestagen metabolite analyses were used to examine relationships between social status, age, season, and ovarian activity in female elephants in Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa. Social status was the strongest predictor of faecal progestagen metabolite concentrations in non-pregnant elephants, with grand matriarchs (n = 6) having the lowest values compared with matriarchs (n = 21) and non-matriarch females (n = 19). Likewise, social status and age were the strongest predictors of faecal progestagen metabolite concentrations in pregnant elephants (n = 27). The number of years since a non-pregnant female gave birth to her last calf (post-partum duration) was longer for older females with a higher social status, as well as during the dry season. Our results indicate that social standing and age of elephants are related to reproductive function, and that older females exhibit reductions in ovarian capacity. These results expand our understanding of reproduction and fertility throughout an elephant's lifespan, and the factors that impact gonadal function in free-ranging females. Given that possible over-abundance of elephants in areas such as Addo Elephant National Park is fuelling the debate over how best to manage these populations, knowledge about the reproductive potential of high-ranking females can provide managers with

  20. The return of the giants: ecological effects of an increasing elephant population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skarpe, Christina; Aarrestad, Per Arild; Andreassen, Harry P; Dhillion, Shivcharn S; Dimakatso, Thatayaone; du Toit, Johan T; Duncan; Halley, J; Hytteborn, Håkan; Makhabu, Shimane; Mari, Moses; Marokane, Wilson; Masunga, Gaseitsiwe; Ditshoswane, Modise; Moe, Stein R; Mojaphoko, Rapelang; Mosugelo, David; Motsumi, Sekgowa; Neo-Mahupeleng, Gosiame; Ramotadima, Mpho; Rutina, Lucas; Sechele, Lettie; Sejoe, Thato B; Stokke, Sigbjørn; Swenson, Jon E; Taolo, Cyril; Vandewalle, Mark; Wegge, Per

    2004-08-01

    Northern Botswana and adjacent areas, have the world's largest population of African elephant (Loxodonta africana). However, a 100 years ago elephants were rare following excessive hunting. Simultaneously, ungulate populations were severely reduced by decease. The ecological effects of the reduction in large herbivores must have been substantial, but are little known. Today, however, ecosystem changes following the increase in elephant numbers cause considerable concern in Botswana. This was the background for the "BONIC" project, investigating the interactions between the increasing elephant population and other ecosystem components and processes. Results confirm that the ecosystem is changing following the increase in elephant and ungulate populations, and, presumably, developing towards a situation resembling that before the reduction of large herbivores. We see no ecological reasons to artificially change elephant numbers. There are, however, economic and social reasons to control elephants, and their range in northern Botswana may have to be artificially restricted.

  1. Exploratory rigid laparoscopy in an African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweet, Julia; Hendrickson, Dean A; Stetter, Mark; Neiffer, Donald L

    2014-12-01

    In March 2009, a 25-yr-old captive female African elephant (Loxodonta africana) underwent an exploratory laparoscopy after several weeks of diarrhea, submandibular and ventral edema, and swelling on medial and lateral aspects of all feet. Although there have been recent advances in laparoscopic vasectomies in free-ranging African elephants in South Africa utilizing specially designed rigid laparoscopes and insufflation devices, this was the first attempt at using these same techniques for an exploratory purpose. The elephant was sedated in a static restraint chute and remained standing for the duration of the procedure. Laparoscopy provided visibility of the dorsal abdomen, enabled collection of reproductive tract biopsies and peritoneal fluid samples, and allowed for instillation of antibiotics and crystalloid fluids directly into the abdominal cavity. Abdominal exploration, collection of tissue samples, and local therapy is possible via standing laparoscopy in megavertebrates.

  2. Social learning in captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greco, Brian J; Brown, Tracey K; Andrews, Jeff R M; Swaisgood, Ronald R; Caine, Nancy G

    2013-05-01

    Social learning is a more efficient method of information acquisition and application than trial and error learning and is prevalent across a variety of animal taxa. Social learning is assumed to be important for elephants, but evidence in support of that claim is mostly anecdotal. Using a herd of six adult female African bush elephants (Loxodonta africana africana) at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park, we evaluated whether viewing a conspecific's interactions facilitated learning of a novel task. The tasks used feeding apparatus that could be solved in one of two distinct ways. Contrary to our hypothesis, the method the demonstrating animal used did not predict the method used by the observer. However, we did find evidence of social learning: After watching the model, subjects spent a greater percentage of their time interacting with the apparatus than they did in unmodeled trials. These results suggest that the demonstrations of a model may increase the motivation of elephants to explore novel foraging tasks.

  3. Elephant grass clones for silage production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rerisson José Cipriano dos Santos

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Ensiling warm-season grasses often requires wilting due to their high moisture content, and the presence of low-soluble sugars in these grasses usually demands the use of additives during the ensiling process. This study evaluated the bromatological composition of the fodder and silage from five Pennisetum sp. clones (IPA HV 241, IPA/UFRPE Taiwan A-146 2.114, IPA/UFRPE Taiwan A-146 2.37, Elephant B, and Mott. The contents of 20 Polyvinyl chloride (PVC silos, which were opened after 90 days of storage, were used for the bromatological analysis and the evaluation of the pH, nitrogen, ammonia, buffer capacity, soluble carbohydrates, and fermentation coefficients. The effluent losses, gases and dry matter recovery were also calculated. Although differences were observed among the clones (p < 0.05 for the concentrations of dry matter, insoluble nitrogen in acid detergents, insoluble nitrogen in neutral detergents, soluble carbohydrates, fermentation coefficients, and in vitro digestibility in the forage before ensiling, no differences were observed for most of these variables after ensiling. All of the clones were efficient in the fermentation process. The IPA/UFRPE TAIWAN A-146 2.37 clone, however, presented a higher dry matter concentration and the best fermentation coefficient, resulting in a better silage quality, compared to the other clones.

  4. Central Asian Republic Info

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Agency for International Development — CAR Info is designed and managed by the Central Asian Republic Mission to fill in the knowledge and reporting gaps in existing agency systems for that Mission. It...

  5. The Asian war bow

    CERN Document Server

    Nieminen, Timo A

    2011-01-01

    The bow is one of the earliest complex machines, a prime example of the storage and transfer of energy. The physics of the bow illuminates compromises and design choices made in Asian military archery.

  6. Asian Art on Display

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Borggreen, Gunhild Ravn

    2010-01-01

    Med udgangspunkt i seminaret Visualising Asian Modernity diskuteres forholdet mellem antropologi og samtidskunst i lyset af hvorledes asiatisk kunst fremvises og formidles i vestlig og dansk sammenhæng....

  7. Glaucoma in Asian Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Us Donate In This Section Glaucoma In Asian Populations email Send this article to a friend by ... an even more serious problem as the world population and longevity increases. The other major glaucoma type ...

  8. The South Asian genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John C Chambers

    Full Text Available The genetic sequence variation of people from the Indian subcontinent who comprise one-quarter of the world's population, is not well described. We carried out whole genome sequencing of 168 South Asians, along with whole-exome sequencing of 147 South Asians to provide deeper characterisation of coding regions. We identify 12,962,155 autosomal sequence variants, including 2,946,861 new SNPs and 312,738 novel indels. This catalogue of SNPs and indels amongst South Asians provides the first comprehensive map of genetic variation in this major human population, and reveals evidence for selective pressures on genes involved in skin biology, metabolism, infection and immunity. Our results will accelerate the search for the genetic variants underlying susceptibility to disorders such as type-2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease which are highly prevalent amongst South Asians.

  9. Analyzing Vegetation Change in an Elephant-Impacted Landscape Using the Moving Standard Deviation Index

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timothy J. Fullman

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Northern Botswana is influenced by various socio-ecological drivers of landscape change. The African elephant (Loxodonta africana is one of the leading sources of landscape shifts in this region. Developing the ability to assess elephant impacts on savanna vegetation is important to promote effective management strategies. The Moving Standard Deviation Index (MSDI applies a standard deviation calculation to remote sensing imagery to assess degradation of vegetation. Used previously for assessing impacts of livestock on rangelands, we evaluate the ability of the MSDI to detect elephant-modified vegetation along the Chobe riverfront in Botswana, a heavily elephant-impacted landscape. At broad scales, MSDI values are positively related to elephant utilization. At finer scales, using data from 257 sites along the riverfront, MSDI values show a consistent negative relationship with intensity of elephant utilization. We suggest that these differences are due to varying effects of elephants across scales. Elephant utilization of vegetation may increase heterogeneity across the landscape, but decrease it within heavily used patches, resulting in the observed MSDI pattern of divergent trends at different scales. While significant, the low explanatory power of the relationship between the MSDI and elephant utilization suggests the MSDI may have limited use for regional monitoring of elephant impacts.

  10. A new policy for the management of the Kruger National Park's elephant population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.J. Whyte

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Arising from public debate held in Midrand on 4 May 1995, the South African National Parks undertook to review its policy for the management of elephant in the Kruger National Park. The new policy focuses on the extent and intensity of elephant impacts on biodiversity rather than on numbers of elephants per se, and is based on four fundamental principles: a That ecosystems are not static; fluctuations of conditions and population responses are an inherent attribute of ecosystems and contribute to biodiversity. A range of elephant impacts in different areas at different times, is thus also natural and desirable; b That elephants are important agents of habitat modification and thus contribute to biodiversity (intermediate disturbance hypothesis; c That elephant populations which are confined will increase in number until negative impacts on the system's biodiversity will ultimately result; d That elephants should not be viewed in isolation, but as one component of a broader, integrated system, and their impacts should be managed in conjunction with other ecosystem process (such as fire to promote biodiversity in its broadest sense. The new policy proposes that the Kruger National Park be divided into six zones@two botanical reserves, two high-elephant-impact zones (no population reduction and two low-elephant-impact zones (where numbers will be actively reduced. A history of the elephant population is given, and a resume of previous poli-cies.

  11. Elephant movement patterns in relation to human inhabitants in and around the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin M. Cook

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The presence of humans and African elephants (Loxodonta africana in the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park can create situations of potential human–elephant conflict. Such conflict will likely be exacerbated as elephant and human populations increase, unless mitigation measures are put in place. In this study we analysed the movement patterns of 13 collared adult African elephants from the northern Kruger National Park over a period of eight years (2006–2014. We compared the occurrence and displacement rates of elephant bulls and cows around villages in the Limpopo National Park and northern border of the Kruger National Park across seasons and at different times of the day. Elephants occurred close to villages more often in the dry season than in the wet season, with bulls occurring more frequently around villages than cows. Both the bulls and the cows preferred to use areas close to villages from early evening to midnight, with the bulls moving closer to villages than the cows. These results suggest that elephants, especially the bulls, are moving through the studied villages in Mozambique and Zimbabwe at night and that these movements are most common during the drier months when resources are known to be scarce.Conservation implications: Elephants from the Kruger National Park are moving in close proximity to villages within the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park. Resettlement of villages within and around the park should therefore be planned away from elephant seasonal routes to minimise conflict between humans and elephants.

  12. Change in Mesoherbivore Browsing Is Mediated by Elephant and Hillslope Position.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagendijk, D D Georgette; Thaker, Maria; de Boer, Willem F; Page, Bruce R; Prins, Herbert H T; Slotow, Rob

    2015-01-01

    Elephant are considered major drivers of ecosystems, but their effects within small-scale landscape features and on other herbivores still remain unclear. Elephant impact on vegetation has been widely studied in areas where elephant have been present for many years. We therefore examined the combined effect of short-term elephant presence (elephant presence did not affect woody species assemblages, but did affect height distribution, with greater sapling densities in elephant access areas. Overall tree and stem densities were also not affected by elephant. By contrast, slope position affected woody species assemblages, but not height distributions and densities. Variation in species assemblages was statistically best explained by levels of total cations, Zinc, sand and clay. Although elephant and mesoherbivore browsing intensities were unaffected by slope position, we found lower mesoherbivore browsing intensity on crests with high elephant browsing intensity. Thus, elephant appear to indirectly facilitate the survival of saplings, via the displacement of mesoherbivores, providing a window of opportunity for saplings to grow into taller trees. In the short-term, effects of elephant can be minor and in the opposite direction of expectation. In addition, such behavioural displacement promotes recruitment of saplings into larger height classes. The interaction between slope position and elephant effect found here is in contrast with other studies, and illustrates the importance of examining ecosystem complexity as a function of variation in species presence and topography. The absence of a direct effect of elephant on vegetation, but the presence of an effect on mesoherbivore browsing, is relevant for conservation areas especially where both herbivore groups are actively managed.

  13. Elevated elephant density does not improve ecotourism opportunities: convergence in social and ecological objectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maciejewski, Kristine; Kerley, Graham I H

    2014-07-01

    In order to sustainably conserve biodiversity, many protected areas, particularly private protected areas, must find means of self-financing. Ecotourism is increasingly seen as a mechanism to achieve such financial sustainability. However, there is concern that ecotourism operations are driven to achieve successful game-viewing, influencing the management of charismatic species. An abundance of such species, including the African elephant (Loxodonta africana), has been stocked in protected areas under the assumption that they will increase ecotourism value. At moderate to high densities, the impact of elephants is costly; numerous studies have documented severe changes in biodiversity through the impacts of elephants. Protected areas that focus on maintaining high numbers of elephants may therefore face a conflict between socioeconomic demands and the capacity of ecological systems. We address this conflict by analyzing tourist elephant-sighting records from six private and one statutory protected area, the Addo Elephant National Park (AENP), in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa, in relation to elephant numbers. We found no relationship between elephant density and elephant-viewing success. Even though elephant density in the AENP increased over time, a hierarchical partitioning analysis indicated that elephant density was not a driver of tourist numbers. In contrast, annual tourist numbers for the AENP were positively correlated with general tourist numbers recorded for South Africa. Our results indicate that the socioeconomic and ecological requirements of protected areas in terms of tourism and elephants, respectively, converge. Thus, high elephant densities and their associated ecological costs are not required to support ecotourism operations for financial sustainability. Understanding the social and ecological feedbacks that dominate the dynamics of protected areas, particularly within private protected areas, can help to elucidate the management

  14. Reconciling apparent conflicts between mitochondrial and nuclear phylogenies in African elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasuko Ishida

    Full Text Available Conservation strategies for African elephants would be advanced by resolution of conflicting claims that they comprise one, two, three or four taxonomic groups, and by development of genetic markers that establish more incisively the provenance of confiscated ivory. We addressed these related issues by genotyping 555 elephants from across Africa with microsatellite markers, developing a method to identify those loci most effective at geographic assignment of elephants (or their ivory, and conducting novel analyses of continent-wide datasets of mitochondrial DNA. Results showed that nuclear genetic diversity was partitioned into two clusters, corresponding to African forest elephants (99.5% Cluster-1 and African savanna elephants (99.4% Cluster-2. Hybrid individuals were rare. In a comparison of basal forest "F" and savanna "S" mtDNA clade distributions to nuclear DNA partitions, forest elephant nuclear genotypes occurred only in populations in which S clade mtDNA was absent, suggesting that nuclear partitioning corresponds to the presence or absence of S clade mtDNA. We reanalyzed African elephant mtDNA sequences from 81 locales spanning the continent and discovered that S clade mtDNA was completely absent among elephants at all 30 sampled tropical forest locales. The distribution of savanna nuclear DNA and S clade mtDNA corresponded closely to range boundaries traditionally ascribed to the savanna elephant species based on habitat and morphology. Further, a reanalysis of nuclear genetic assignment results suggested that West African elephants do not comprise a distinct third species. Finally, we show that some DNA markers will be more useful than others for determining the geographic origins of illegal ivory. These findings resolve the apparent incongruence between mtDNA and nuclear genetic patterns that has confounded the taxonomy of African elephants, affirm the limitations of using mtDNA patterns to infer elephant systematics or population

  15. Reconciling apparent conflicts between mitochondrial and nuclear phylogenies in African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishida, Yasuko; Oleksyk, Taras K; Georgiadis, Nicholas J; David, Victor A; Zhao, Kai; Stephens, Robert M; Kolokotronis, Sergios-Orestis; Roca, Alfred L

    2011-01-01

    Conservation strategies for African elephants would be advanced by resolution of conflicting claims that they comprise one, two, three or four taxonomic groups, and by development of genetic markers that establish more incisively the provenance of confiscated ivory. We addressed these related issues by genotyping 555 elephants from across Africa with microsatellite markers, developing a method to identify those loci most effective at geographic assignment of elephants (or their ivory), and conducting novel analyses of continent-wide datasets of mitochondrial DNA. Results showed that nuclear genetic diversity was partitioned into two clusters, corresponding to African forest elephants (99.5% Cluster-1) and African savanna elephants (99.4% Cluster-2). Hybrid individuals were rare. In a comparison of basal forest "F" and savanna "S" mtDNA clade distributions to nuclear DNA partitions, forest elephant nuclear genotypes occurred only in populations in which S clade mtDNA was absent, suggesting that nuclear partitioning corresponds to the presence or absence of S clade mtDNA. We reanalyzed African elephant mtDNA sequences from 81 locales spanning the continent and discovered that S clade mtDNA was completely absent among elephants at all 30 sampled tropical forest locales. The distribution of savanna nuclear DNA and S clade mtDNA corresponded closely to range boundaries traditionally ascribed to the savanna elephant species based on habitat and morphology. Further, a reanalysis of nuclear genetic assignment results suggested that West African elephants do not comprise a distinct third species. Finally, we show that some DNA markers will be more useful than others for determining the geographic origins of illegal ivory. These findings resolve the apparent incongruence between mtDNA and nuclear genetic patterns that has confounded the taxonomy of African elephants, affirm the limitations of using mtDNA patterns to infer elephant systematics or population structure, and

  16. On the general elephant conjecture for Mori conic bundles

    CERN Document Server

    Prokhorov, Yu G

    1996-01-01

    Let $f:X\\to S$ be an extremal contraction from a threefolds with terminal singularities onto a surface (so called Mori conic bundle). We study some particular cases of such contractions: quotients of usual conic bundles and index two contractions. Assuming Reid's general elephants conjecture we also obtain a rough classification. We present many examples.

  17. ELEPHANT DECLINE IN LAKE-MANYARA-NATIONAL-PARK, TANZANIA

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    PRINS, HHT; VANDERJEUGD, HP; BEEKMAN, JH

    1994-01-01

    The population of African elephant (Loxodonta africana (Blumenbach)) in Lake Manyara National Park, northern Tanzania, declined from about 500 individuals in 1984, to about 150 in 1988 due to poaching (mortality rate about 60% p.a.). In 1991 the population had declined further to about 60 individual

  18. Managing African Elephant Populations: Act or let die

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Colenbrander, Ben; Gooijer, Jean de; Paling, Robert; Stout, Susanna; Stout, Tom; Allen, Twink

    2004-01-01

    During the last century, the number of African elephant (Loxodonta africana) declined dramatically as a result of over-hunting, poaching for ivory and, more recently, the loss of habitat area due to encroachment of the human population. In some areas, however, the trend to declining numbers was reve

  19. Illegal killing for ivory drives global decline in African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittemyer, George; Northrup, Joseph M; Blanc, Julian; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Omondi, Patrick; Burnham, Kenneth P

    2014-09-09

    Illegal wildlife trade has reached alarming levels globally, extirpating populations of commercially valuable species. As a driver of biodiversity loss, quantifying illegal harvest is essential for conservation and sociopolitical affairs but notoriously difficult. Here we combine field-based carcass monitoring with fine-scale demographic data from an intensively studied wild African elephant population in Samburu, Kenya, to partition mortality into natural and illegal causes. We then expand our analytical framework to model illegal killing rates and population trends of elephants at regional and continental scales using carcass data collected by a Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species program. At the intensively monitored site, illegal killing increased markedly after 2008 and was correlated strongly with the local black market ivory price and increased seizures of ivory destined for China. More broadly, results from application to continental data indicated illegal killing levels were unsustainable for the species between 2010 and 2012, peaking to ∼ 8% in 2011 which extrapolates to ∼ 40,000 elephants illegally killed and a probable species reduction of ∼ 3% that year. Preliminary data from 2013 indicate overharvesting continued. In contrast to the rest of Africa, our analysis corroborates that Central African forest elephants experienced decline throughout the last decade. These results provide the most comprehensive assessment of illegal ivory harvest to date and confirm that current ivory consumption is not sustainable. Further, our approach provides a powerful basis to determine cryptic mortality and gain understanding of the demography of at-risk species.

  20. Seasonal diet changes in elephant and impala in mopane woodland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kos, M.; Hoetmer, A.J.; Pretorius, Y.; Boer, de W.F.; Knegt, de H.J.; Grant, C.C.; Kohi, E.; Page, B.; Peel, M.; Slotow, R.; Waal, van der C.; Wieren, van S.E.; Prins, H.H.T.; Langevelde, van F.

    2012-01-01

    Elephant and impala as intermediate feeders, having a mixed diet of grass and browse, respond to seasonal fluctuations of forage quality by changing their diet composition. We tested the hypotheses that (1) the decrease in forage quality is accompanied by a change in diet from more monocots in the w

  1. Movement of southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina L. from Elephant Is. South Shetlands, Antarctica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mônica M. C. Muelbert

    2004-07-01

    Full Text Available In 1999, at-sea activity of two young southern elephant seal males (Mirounga leonina from Elephant Is. (61º13'S, 55º23'W, Antarctica, was monitored and tracked for 9 months. The individuals were randomly selected, captured, sedated (Zoletil 50®- 1mg/kg, weighed, measured, bled, paint-marked and fitted with satellite tags (STDR - ST-6PPT, Telonics®, USA. Deployment of the STDR took about 45 min since each animal had a lower incisor tooth extracted for age determination. The seals exhibited individual behaviors. Seal "V"-23842 (BM ~ 801kg moved from Elephant Is. (61.2ºS 55.3ºW in Jan. 1999 to King George Is. (62.2ºS 58.1ºW in Feb. 1999 when the tag stopped signaling. Seal "T"-23843 (BM ~ 656 kg was restricted to the area around Elephant Is. (61.2ºS 54.4ºW - 61.6ºS 55.4ºW from January to May 1999, when it started to move south-eastwards. Although the age of these individuals was not yet determined it was likely to explain the difference in the two patterns of movement reported here. The temporal and spatial association of these movements with areas of high productivity is being investigated to assess whether the observed distribution reflects foraging activity.O presente estudo descreve os movimentos de dois exemplares de elefante-marinho do sul (Mirounga leonina durante a fase pelágica de seu ciclo de vida. Os exemplares foram capturados no verão austral de 1999 na Ilha Elefante (61º13'S, 55º23'W, Antártica, e monitorados por aproximadamente 9 meses. Cada exemplar foi instrumentado com um medidor de tempo e profundidade de mergulho via satélite (Sattelite Time Depth Recorder, STDR mod. ST-6PPT, Telonics®, EUA com uma antena VHF acoplada ao instrumento, montado num molde de tela e resina, fixado com cintas plásticas, e colados na pelagem dorsal do animal com resina plástica. Para a instrumentação o animal era capturado com rede de contenção e imobilizado quimicamente com anestésico dissociativo (Zoletil 50®- 1mg/kg. Um

  2. Characterization of an endogenous retrovirus class in elephants and their relatives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Englbrecht Claudia C

    2004-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Endogenous retrovirus-like elements (ERV-Ls, primed with tRNA leucine are a diverse group of reiterated sequences related to foamy viruses and widely distributed among mammals. As shown in previous investigations, in many primates and rodents this class of elements has remained transpositionally active, as reflected by increased copy number and high sequence diversity within and among taxa. Results Here we examine whether proviral-like sequences may be suitable molecular probes for investigating the phylogeny of groups known to have high element diversity. As a test we characterized ERV-Ls occurring in a sample of extant members of superorder Uranotheria (Asian and African elephants, manatees, and hyraxes. The ERV-L complement in this group is even more diverse than previously suspected, and there is sequence evidence for active expansion, particularly in elephantids. Many of the elements characterized have protein coding potential suggestive of activity. Conclusions In general, the evidence supports the hypothesis that the complement had a single origin within basal Uranotheria.

  3. Mammoth and Mastodon collagen sequences; survival and utility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckley, M.; Larkin, N.; Collins, M.

    2011-04-01

    Near-complete collagen (I) sequences are proposed for elephantid and mammutid taxa, based upon available African elephant genomic data and supported with LC-MALDI-MS/MS and LC-ESI-MS/MS analyses of collagen digests from proboscidean bone. Collagen sequence coverage was investigated from several specimens of two extinct mammoths ( Mammuthus trogontherii and Mammuthus primigenius), the extinct American mastodon ( Mammut americanum), the extinct straight-tusked elephant ( Elephas ( Palaeoloxodon) antiquus) and extant Asian ( Elephas maximus) and African ( Loxodonta africana) elephants and compared between the two ionization techniques used. Two suspected mammoth fossils from the British Middle Pleistocene (Cromerian) deposits of the West Runton Forest Bed were analysed to investigate the potential use of peptide mass spectrometry for fossil identification. Despite the age of the fossils, sufficient peptides were obtained to identify these as elephantid, and sufficient sequence variation to discriminate elephantid and mammutid collagen (I). In-depth LC-MS analyses further failed to identify a peptide that could be used to reliably distinguish between the three genera of elephantids ( Elephas, Loxodonta and Mammuthus), an observation consistent with predicted amino acid substitution rates between these species.

  4. The ecology of the elephants in the Kasungu National Park, Malawi with specific reference to management of elephant populations in the Brachystegia biome of Southern Central Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jachmann, Hugo

    1984-01-01

    The elephant is one of the most important animals in African Wildlife Management, firstly because it is capable of modifying through cropping. The latter also makes it a prime poaching target. The main problems caused by elephant concern changes in the physiognomy of the habitat with its consequence

  5. Distribution and status of the African elephant Loxodonta africana in South Africa, 1652-1992

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.J. Hall-Martin

    1992-09-01

    Full Text Available The historical decline of African elephants to a low of 120 animals in 1920, and their subsequent recovery to over 10 000 is described for the major populations of South Africa. Population growth rates of 6,8 and 6,7 per annum are derived from census and estimates for the Kruger National Park and the Addo Elephant National Park respectively. The reasons for elephant population control in the Kruger National Park, and the impact of elephants on both the Kruger and Addo environments, are discussed. The translocation of young elephants to found new populations is mentioned. The consequent increase of elephant range and numbers in the next decade to a possible maximum of 31 000 km2 and 13 000 animals, is envisaged.

  6. Estimating economic losses to tourism in Africa from the illegal killing of elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naidoo, Robin; Fisher, Brendan; Manica, Andrea; Balmford, Andrew

    2016-11-01

    Recent surveys suggest tens of thousands of elephants are being poached annually across Africa, putting the two species at risk across much of their range. Although the financial motivations for ivory poaching are clear, the economic benefits of elephant conservation are poorly understood. We use Bayesian statistical modelling of tourist visits to protected areas, to quantify the lost economic benefits that poached elephants would have delivered to African countries via tourism. Our results show these figures are substantial (~USD $25 million annually), and that the lost benefits exceed the anti-poaching costs necessary to stop elephant declines across the continent's savannah areas, although not currently in the forests of central Africa. Furthermore, elephant conservation in savannah protected areas has net positive economic returns comparable to investments in sectors such as education and infrastructure. Even from a tourism perspective alone, increased elephant conservation is therefore a wise investment by governments in these regions.

  7. Genomic behavior of hybrid combinations between elephant grass and pearl millet

    OpenAIRE

    Fernando Ferreira Leão; Lisete Chamma Davide; José Marcello Salabert de Campos; Antonio Vander Pereira; Fernanda de Oliveira Bustamante

    2011-01-01

    The objective of this work was to evaluate the genomic behavior of hybrid combinations between elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum) and pearl millet (P. glaucum). Tetraploid (AAA'B) and pentaploid (AA'A'BB) chromosome races resulting from the backcross of the hexaploid hybrid to its parents elephant grass (A'A'BB) and pearl millet (AA) were analyzed as to chromosome number and DNA content. Genotypes of elephant grass, millet, and triploid and hexaploid induced hybrids were compared. Pentaplo...

  8. An improved real time image detection system for elephant intrusion along the forest border areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugumar, S J; Jayaparvathy, R

    2014-01-01

    Human-elephant conflict is a major problem leading to crop damage, human death and injuries caused by elephants, and elephants being killed by humans. In this paper, we propose an automated unsupervised elephant image detection system (EIDS) as a solution to human-elephant conflict in the context of elephant conservation. The elephant's image is captured in the forest border areas and is sent to a base station via an RF network. The received image is decomposed using Haar wavelet to obtain multilevel wavelet coefficients, with which we perform image feature extraction and similarity match between the elephant query image and the database image using image vision algorithms. A GSM message is sent to the forest officials indicating that an elephant has been detected in the forest border and is approaching human habitat. We propose an optimized distance metric to improve the image retrieval time from the database. We compare the optimized distance metric with the popular Euclidean and Manhattan distance methods. The proposed optimized distance metric retrieves more images with lesser retrieval time than the other distance metrics which makes the optimized distance method more efficient and reliable.

  9. Distinguishing forest and savanna African elephants using short nuclear DNA sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishida, Yasuko; Demeke, Yirmed; van Coeverden de Groot, Peter J; Georgiadis, Nicholas J; Leggett, Keith E A; Fox, Virginia E; Roca, Alfred L

    2011-01-01

    A more complete description of African elephant phylogeography would require a method that distinguishes forest and savanna elephants using DNA from low-quality samples. Although mitochondrial DNA is often the marker of choice for species identification, the unusual cytonuclear patterns in African elephants make nuclear markers more reliable. We therefore designed and utilized genetic markers for short nuclear DNA regions that contain fixed nucleotide differences between forest and savanna elephants. We used M13 forward and reverse sequences to increase the total length of PCR amplicons and to improve the quality of sequences for the target DNA. We successfully sequenced fragments of nuclear genes from dung samples of known savanna and forest elephants in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, and Namibia. Elephants at previously unexamined locations were found to have nucleotide character states consistent with their status as savanna or forest elephants. Using these and results from previous studies, we estimated that the short-amplicon nuclear markers could distinguish forest from savanna African elephants with more than 99% accuracy. Nuclear genotyping of museum, dung, or ivory samples will provide better-informed conservation management of Africa's elephants.

  10. Elephant grass ensiled with wheat bran compared with corn silage in diets for lactating goats

    OpenAIRE

    Jacianelly Karla da Silva; Juliana Silva Oliveira; Ariosvalo Nunes de Medeiros; Edson Mauro Santos; Tamires da Silva Magalhães; Alenice Ozino Ramos; Higor Fábio Carvalho Bezerra

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of wheat bran as an additive in elephant-grass silage on intake and digestibility of the nutrients, ingestive behavior, and yield and chemical composition of milk. Eight goats with 45 days of lactation were distributed in a (4 × 4) Latin square design.The treatments consisted of corn silage (CS), elephant-grass silage without wheat bran (EGS), elephant-grass silage with 10% wheat bran (EGS+10%WB), and elephant-grass silage with 20% wheat bra...

  11. Post-bottleneck genetic diversity of elephant populations in South Africa, revealed using microsatellite analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehouse, A M; Harley, E H

    2001-09-01

    Widespread hunting had fragmented and severely reduced elephant populations in South Africa by 1900. Elephant numbers increased during the 1900s, although rates of recovery of individual populations varied. The Kruger National Park elephant population increased rapidly, to more than 6000 by 1967, with recruitment boosted by immigration from Mozambique. The Addo Elephant National Park population was reduced to 11 elephants in 1931 and remains relatively small (n = 325). Loss of genetic variation is expected to occur whenever a population goes through a bottleneck, especially when post-bottleneck recovery is slow. Variation at nine polymorphic microsatellite loci was analysed for Kruger and Addo elephants, as well as museum specimens of Addo elephants shot prior to the population bottleneck. Significantly reduced genetic variation and heterozygosity were observed in Addo in comparison to Kruger (mean alleles/locus and H(E): Addo 1.89, 0.18; Kruger 3.89, 0.44). Two alleles not present in the current Addo population were observed in the museum specimens. Addo elephants represent a genetic subset of the Kruger population, with high levels of genetic differentiation resulting from rapid genetic drift. The Kruger population is low in genetic diversity in comparison to East African elephants, confirming this population also suffered an appreciable bottleneck.

  12. Three Blind Men and the Elephant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Long, J S

    2007-02-13

    Just like the blind men in the popular story of perceiving the elephant, the three major constituencies participating in the energy debate have greatly different perceptions of the problem. The constituency that is worried about climate change believes the energy problem is caused by profligate use of fossil fuel that has dramatically changed our atmosphere. The energy security group sees dangerous reliance on foreign sources of oil increasingly held by countries hostile to the US. The economic vitality group sees high energy prices and their effect on the economy and our life-style. Just like the blind men, each of the three constituencies perceives a different problem. And just as with the blind men, while each perspective is right as a piece of the elephant, it takes all the perspectives together to actually solve the problem. Environmentalists focus on solutions responding to the scientific consensus that greenhouse gases are creating rapid climate change. The tipping point has come: it is now a consensus position among scientists the global warming is being affected by anthropogenic activity to 90% certainty according to the last IPCC report. Although they still struggle with the prediction of how much global temperatures will rise if we do nothing--is it 5 deg or 10 under BAU? This group believes that we cannot afford to take a chance because we get only one chance. We can not afford to do this kind of experiment with the Earth. Any choice which decreases our CO{sub 2} footprint is favored, even if it means a decrease in standard of living. The energy security constituency sees the geo-politics of oil becoming increasingly dire. They look at oil money being used to fund anti-American activities of groups such as the Wahabis in Saudi Arabia, Hezbollah in Lebanon and the infamous Al Qaeda. They quip that the Iraq war is the first war where we are paying for both sides. They note Iran and the Shia throughout the Middle East seeing the possibility of controlling

  13. Modeling elephant-mediated cascading effects of water point closure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilbers, Jelle P; Van Langevelde, Frank; Prins, Herbert H T; Grant, C C; Peel, Mike J S; Coughenour, Michael B; De Knegt, Henrik J; Slotow, Rob; Smit, Izak P J; Kiker, Greg A; De Boer, Willem F

    2015-03-01

    Wildlife management to reduce the impact of wildlife on their habitat can be done in several ways, among which removing animals (by either culling or translocation) is most often used. There are, however, alternative ways to control wildlife densities, such as opening or closing water points. The effects of these alternatives are poorly studied. In this paper, we focus on manipulating large herbivores through the closure of water points (WPs). Removal of artificial WPs has been suggested in order to change the distribution of African elephants, which occur in high densities in national parks in Southern Africa and are thought to have a destructive effect on the vegetation. Here, we modeled the long-term effects of different scenarios of WP closure on the spatial distribution of elephants, and consequential effects on the vegetation and other herbivores in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Using a dynamic ecosystem model, SAVANNA, scenarios were evaluated that varied in availability of artificial WPs; levels of natural water; and elephant densities. Our modeling results showed that elephants can indirectly negatively affect the distributions of meso-mixed feeders, meso-browsers, and some meso-grazers under wet conditions. The closure of artificial WPs hardly had any effect during these natural wet conditions. Under dry conditions, the spatial distribution of both elephant bulls and cows changed when the availability of artificial water was severely reduced in the model. These changes in spatial distribution triggered changes in the spatial availability of woody biomass over the simulation period of 80 years, and this led to changes in the rest of the herbivore community, resulting in increased densities of all herbivores, except for giraffe and steenbok, in areas close to rivers. The spatial distributions of elephant bulls and cows showed to be less affected by the closure of WPs than most of the other herbivore species. Our study contributes to ecologically

  14. First reported case of fatal tuberculosis in a wild African elephant with past human-wildlife contact.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obanda, V; Poghon, J; Yongo, M; Mulei, I; Ngotho, M; Waititu, K; Makumi, J; Gakuya, F; Omondi, P; Soriguer, R C; Alasaad, S

    2013-07-01

    Tuberculosis is emerging/re-emerging in captive elephant populations, where it causes morbidity and deaths, although no case of TB in wild African elephants has been reported. In this paper we report the first case of fatal TB in an African elephant in the wild. The infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis was confirmed by post-mortem and histological examinations of a female sub-adult elephant aged >12 years that died in Tsavo East National Park, Kenya, while under treatment. This case is unique in that during its lifetime the elephant had contact with both humans and wild elephants. The source of the infection was unclear because the elephant could have acquired the infection in the orphanage or in the wild. However, our results show that wild elephants can maintain human TB in the wild and that the infection can be fatal.

  15. Scrolling and Strolling, Asian Style

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterling, Joan

    2012-01-01

    In this article, the author describes a lesson on Asian cultures. Asian cultures demonstrate respect for nature through their art. Students learned how to use Asian brush techniques and designs to create scrolls. They also learned how to write Haiku, a three-line form of poetry that uses a pattern of syllables.

  16. South Asian Diaspora in Scandinavia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Singla, Rashmi

    2005-01-01

    and exclusion, individualization and interdependency, these relationships are delineated on the basis of two empirical projects, combined with an array of secondary sources. South Asian youth are becoming a part of the receiving society along with developing their complex diaspora identities through strategies...... societies, South Asian countries and the South Asian diaspora living in Scandinavia....

  17. Dating Studies of Elephant Tusks Using Accelerator Mass Spectrometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sideras-Haddad, E; Brown, T A

    2002-10-03

    A new method for determining the year of birth, the year of death, and hence, the age at death, of post-bomb and recently deceased elephants has been developed. The technique is based on Accelerator Mass Spectrometry radiocarbon analyses of small-sized samples extracted from along the length of a ge-line of an elephant tusk. The measured radiocarbon concentrations in the samples from a tusk can be compared to the {sup 14}C atmospheric bomb-pulse curve to derive the growth years of the initial and final samples from the tusk. Initial data from the application of this method to two tusks will be presented. Potentially, the method may play a significant role in wildlife management practices of African national parks. Additionally, the method may contribute to the underpinnings of efforts to define new international trade regulations, which could, in effect, decrease poaching and the killing of very young animals.

  18. Matriarchs as repositories of social knowledge in African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McComb, K; Moss, C; Durant, S M; Baker, L; Sayialel, S

    2001-04-20

    Despite widespread interest in the evolution of social intelligence, little is known about how wild animals acquire and store information about social companions or whether individuals possessing enhanced social knowledge derive biological fitness benefits. Using playback experiments on African elephants (Loxodonta africana), we demonstrated that the possession of enhanced discriminatory abilities by the oldest individual in a group can influence the social knowledge of the group as a whole. These superior abilities for social discrimination may result in higher per capita reproductive success for female groups led by older individuals. Our findings imply that the removal of older, more experienced individuals, which are often targets for hunters because of their large size, could have serious consequences for endangered populations of advanced social mammals such as elephants and whales.

  19. HIV Among Asians

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Prevention VIH En Español Get Tested Find an HIV testing site near you. Enter ZIP code or city Follow HIV/AIDS CDC HIV CDC HIV/AIDS See RSS | ... Email Updates on HIV Syndicated Content Website Feedback HIV Among Asians Format: Select One File [143K] Recommend ...

  20. Malaysian Cinema, Asian Film

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heide, van der William

    2002-01-01

    This title series departs from traditional studies of national cinema by accentuating the intercultural and intertextual links between Malaysian films and Asian (as well as European and American) film practices. Using cross-cultural analysis, the author characterizes Malaysia as a pluralist society

  1. A New Asian Alliance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    The inauguration of the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area caps 10 years of fruitful efforts It was not only the birth of a new decade. January 1 also witnessed a day of celebration on the mainland and beyond after Beijing and its partners in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) fully established the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area (CAFTA).

  2. Asian Yellow Goat Cloned

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    @@ It was released on August 24,2005 by Prof. CHEN Dayuan (Da-Yuan Chen) from the CAS Institute of Zoology that the first success in cloning the Asian Yellow Goat by nuclear transfer had recently been achieved in east China's Shandong Province.

  3. Asian fungal fermented food

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nout, M.J.R.; Aidoo, K.E.

    2010-01-01

    In Asian countries, there is a long history of fermentation of foods and beverages. Diverse micro-organisms, including bacteria, yeasts and moulds, are used as starters, and a wide range of ingredients can be made into fermented foods. The main raw materials include cereals, leguminous seeds, vegeta

  4. Rates of reinforcement and measures of compliance in free and protected contact elephant management systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Megan L; Perdue, Bonnie M; Bloomsmith, Mollie A; Maple, Terry L

    2015-01-01

    Protected contact is an alternative to traditional captive elephant training techniques that emerged as a result of concerns for animal welfare and personnel safety. The present study documented the behavior of elephants and their animal care professionals to determine rates of reinforcement and measures of compliance under two handling systems. Behavioral data were collected from animal care professionals and elephants during the elephants' baths in both free contact (FC) and protected contact (PC). Positive reinforcement, in the form of food, was delivered, on average, nearly eight times more frequently in the PC condition. Further, the mean rate at which the animal care professionals used the ankus in the FC condition as negative reinforcement was similar to the mean rate at which they provided positive reinforcement to the elephants in the FC condition. Latencies between verbal commands and the elephants' behaviors demonstrated an inconsistent pattern, but were generally longer in the PC condition. The mean percent of "refusals" by the elephants was higher for most behaviors across elephants in the PC condition. The findings suggest that animal care professionals did not heavily rely on positive reinforcement in the FC condition to elicit desired behaviors from the elephants, but this was the case in the PC condition. We propose that longer latencies and higher mean percent of refusals by the elephants may indicate that they were exercising choice or control over their environment, which has been associated with improved well-being. Additional studies of this kind are needed to enable other institutions to make informed decisions about elephant management and welfare.

  5. Wire netting reduces African elephant (Loxodonta africana impact to selected trees in South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly Derham

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available African elephants (Loxodonta africana are ecosystem engineers in that they substantially alter the environment through their unique foraging and feeding habits. At high densities, elephants potentially have negative impacts on the environment, specifically for large trees. Because of this, recent increases of elephants in the Associated Private Nature Reserves (APNR on the western boundary of the Kruger National Park (KNP, South Africa, have caused concern regarding the survival of several tree species. Our objective was to assess the effectiveness of wrapping protective wire netting around the trunk of the tree for preventing and reducing bark stripping, branch breaking, and felling by elephants. We assessed 2668 trees – 1352 Sclerocarya birrea (marula, 857 Acacia nigrescens (knobthorn, and 459 Lannea schweinfurthii (false marula – for elephant impact in the APNR, 1387 (52% of which had previously been wrapped in protective wire netting (789, 548 and 50, respectively. Wire netting was effective in reducing the severity of bark stripping and the relative proportion of trees that were bark stripped. In addition, wire netting had an effect on the level of impact, with a higher relative frequency of wire-net-protected trees found in lower impact categories compared with unprotected trees. Since tree mortality has been attributed to high levels of elephant impact, the use of wire netting could serve to maintain individual trees or populations particularly vulnerable to elephant impact in areas with locally high densities of elephants.Conservation implications: Since wire netting is a relatively low cost and ecologically unobtrusive strategy, it could be used to reduce elephant impact in problem areas. This method focuses on protecting trees rather than some other strategies such as environmental manipulation, translocation, contraceptives, and culling that instead focus on reducing elephant numbers.Keywords: Elephant impact; bark stripping

  6. Elephant trail runoff and sediment dynamics in northern Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidle, Roy C; Ziegler, Alan D

    2010-01-01

    Although elephants may exert various impacts on the environment, no data are available on the effects of elephant trails on runoff, soil erosion, and sediment transport to streams during storms. We monitored water and sediment fluxes from an elephant trail in northern Thailand during seven monsoon storms representing a wide range of rainfall energies. Runoff varied from trivial amounts to 353 mm and increased rapidly in tandem with expanding contributing areas once a threshold of wetting occurred. Runoff coefficients during the two largest storms were much higher than could be generated from the trail itself, implying a 4.5- to 7.9-fold increase in the drainage areas contributing to storm runoff. Clockwise hysteresis patterns of suspended sediment observed during most storms was amplified by a "first flush" of sediment early on the hydrograph in which easily entrained sediment was transported. As runoff areas expanded during the latter part of large storms, discharge increased but sediment concentrations declined. Thus, sediment flux was better correlated to kinetic energy of rainfall on the falling limbs of most storm hydrographs compared to rising limbs. Based on a power function relationship between sediment flux and storm kinetic energy, the estimated annual sediment yield from the trail for 135 storms in 2005 was 308 to 375 Mg ha(-1) yr(-1), higher than from most disturbed land surfaces in the tropics. The eight largest storms (30% of total storm energy) in 2005 transported half of the total annual sediment. These measurements together with site investigations reveal that highly interconnected elephant trails, together with other source areas, directly link runoff and sediment to streams.

  7. Comparative demography of an at-risk African elephant population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Wittemyer

    Full Text Available Knowledge of population processes across various ecological and management settings offers important insights for species conservation and life history. In regard to its ecological role, charisma and threats from human impacts, African elephants are of high conservation concern and, as a result, are the focus of numerous studies across various contexts. Here, demographic data from an individually based study of 934 African elephants in Samburu, Kenya were summarized, providing detailed inspection of the population processes experienced by the population over a fourteen year period (including the repercussions of recent increases in illegal killing. These data were compared with those from populations inhabiting a spectrum of xeric to mesic ecosystems with variable human impacts. In relation to variability in climate and human impacts (causing up to 50% of recorded deaths among adults, annual mortality in Samburu fluctuated between 1 and 14% and, unrelatedly, natality between 2 and 14% driving annual population increases and decreases. Survivorship in Samburu was significantly lower than other populations with age-specific data even during periods of low illegal killing by humans, resulting in relatively low life expectancy of males (18.9 years and females (21.8 years. Fecundity (primiparous age and inter-calf interval were similar to those reported in other human impacted or recovering populations, and significantly greater than that of comparable stable populations. This suggests reproductive effort of African savanna elephants increases in relation to increased mortality (and resulting ecological ramifications as predicted by life history theory. Further comparison across populations indicated that elongated inter-calf intervals and older ages of reproductive onset were related to age structure and density, and likely influenced by ecological conditions. This study provides detailed empirical data on elephant population dynamics strongly

  8. Elephant Transcriptome Provides Insights into the Evolution of Eutherian Placentation

    OpenAIRE

    Hou, Zhuo-Cheng; Sterner, Kirstin N.; Romero, Roberto; Than, Nandor Gabor; Gonzalez, Juan M.; Weckle, Amy; Xing, Jun; Benirschke, Kurt; Goodman, Morris; Wildman, Derek E.

    2012-01-01

    The chorioallantoic placenta connects mother and fetus in eutherian pregnancies. In order to understand the evolution of the placenta and provide further understanding of placenta biology, we sequenced the transcriptome of a term placenta of an African elephant (Loxodonta africana) and compared these data with RNA sequence and microarray data from other eutherian placentas including human, mouse, and cow. We characterized the composition of 55,910 expressed sequence tag (i.e., cDNA) contigs u...

  9. Asteroid Lightcurve Analysis at Elephant Head Observatory: 2013 August- October

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alkema, Michael S.

    2014-01-01

    Photometric observations of two main-belt asteroids, 541 Deborah and 1468 Zomba, were made from Elephant Head Observatory during 2013 August to October. The period and amplitude results are, respectively, P = 29.368 ± 0.005 h, A = 0.10 ± 0.01 mag; P = 2.773 ± 0.001 h, A = 0.34 ± 0.02 mag.

  10. Articulating Asianness: Young Asian Dutch and non-homeland Asian popular media

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    R.A. Kartosen; E.S.H. Tan

    2013-01-01

    This study explores Asian Dutch young people’s ethnic-cultural identification in relation to their media consumption, and specifically their consumption of popular media from Asian countries other than their country of origin. A survey was conducted among 486 Asian Dutch (18-35 years old). In concur

  11. History of Asian American psychology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leong, Frederick T L; Okazaki, Sumie

    2009-10-01

    An overview of the history of Asian American psychology is provided by reviewing the context for the development of the field as well as the early founding of the Asian American Psychological Association (AAPA). The presidents of AAPA as well as key events and conferences are noted. The involvement of AAPA leaders in national mental health policies and activities are reviewed. The substantive areas of Asian American psychology and the education and training of Asian American psychologists are also discussed. The article ends with some comments about the future of Asian American psychology.

  12. RESULTS OF THE MEGAVERTEBRATE ANALGESIA SURVEY: ELEPHANTS AND RHINO.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kottwitz, Jack; Boothe, Matthew; Harmon, Roy; Citino, Scott B; Zuba, Jeffery R; Boothe, Dawn M

    2016-03-01

    An online survey utilizing Survey Monkey linked through the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians listserve examined current practices in megavertebrate analgesia. Data collected included drugs administered, dosing regimens, ease of administration, efficacy, and adverse events. Fifty-nine facilities (38 housing elephants, 33 housing rhinoceroses) responded. All facilities administered nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), with phenylbutazone (0.25-10 mg/kg) and flunixin meglumine (0.2-4 mg/kg) being most common. Efficacy was reported as "good" to "excellent" for these medications. Opioids were administered to elephants (11 of 38) and rhinoceroses (7 of 33), with tramadol (0.5-3.0 mg/kg) and butorphanol (0.05-1.0 mg/kg) being most common. Tramadol efficacy scores were highly variable in both elephants and rhinoceroses. While drug choices were similar among institutions, substantial variability in dosing regimens and reported efficacy between and within facilities indicates the need for pharmacokinetic studies and standardized methods of analyzing response to treatment to establish dosing regimens and clinical trials to establish efficacy and safety.

  13. Morphological aspects and composition of African elephant (Loxodonta africana ivory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.J. Raubenheimer

    1999-02-01

    Full Text Available This study was aimed at determining the origin of the diamond shaped pattern and composition of ivory of the African elephant. Fragments of ivory and tusks were obtained through the National Parks Board from the Kruger Park, Addo Elephant Park, Kaokoveld, Caprivi, Etosha, Kavango and Tembe Elephant Park. Polished surfaces were prepared in different planes and examined with light and electron microscopical techniques. Analyses of the inorganic composition were performed using atomic absorption spectrophotometry, ion selective electrodes and inductively coupled optical emission spectroscopy. The total amino acid composition was determined with the aid of an amino acid analyser. Morphological investigations showed the distinctive diamond shaped pattern of ivory to be caused by the sinusoidal surface to pulpal course followed by odontoblastic tubules. This course is the result of pressure which builds up between tightly packed odontoblasts on their centripetal course along an ever decreasing pulpal circumference during formation of ivory. A total of 17 elements were detected in the inorganic fraction of ivory, some in concentrations as low as 0.25 ^g/g. The concentrations of calcium, magnesium, fluoride, cobalt and zinc showed statistically significant differences (P < 0.007 between selected regions and may prove valuable in distinguishing chemically between ivory from different geographical locations. The organic content of ivory showed 17 amino acids in varying concentrations. The possible causes of these variations are discussed.

  14. Luteal maintenance of pregnancy in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stansfield, F J; Allen, W R

    2012-06-01

    The ovaries of eight African elephant foetuses and their mothers between 2 and 22 months of gestation, and those of two cycling and two lactating elephants, were examined grossly, histologically and immunocytochemically, with emphasis on the development and regression of accessory corpora lutea (CL) of pregnancy and the steroidogenic capacities of the accessory CL and the foetal ovaries. The results supported recent findings that the accessory CL form as a result of luteinisation, with and without ovulation, of medium-sized follicles during the 3-week inter-luteal period of the oestrous cycle. They enlarge significantly and become steroidogenically active around 5 weeks of gestation, probably in response to the placental lactogen which is secreted by the implanting trophoblast of the conceptus. The large luteal cells stained strongly for 3β hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3βHSD) activity throughout the 22-month gestation period although they showed vacuolation and other degenerative changes in the final months of gestation coincident with hypertrophy and hyperplasia of 3βHSD-positive interstitial cells in the foetal gonads. It is proposed that the progestagens secreted by the enlarged gonads of the elephant foetus may function both to assist the maternal ovaries in supporting the pregnancy state and to induce torpor and intrauterine immobility of the rapidly growing foetus.

  15. The Effects of One-Off Ivory Sales on Elephant Mortality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bulte, E.H.; Damania, R.; Kooten, van G.C.

    2007-01-01

    We revisited the debate about whether the 1999 one-off sale of ivory promoted elephant (Loxodonta africana) poaching in Africa. Complementing earlier work based on ivory seizure data, we considered data on elephant mortality in Zimbabwe and Kenya. Our findings present a mixed picture. At the local l

  16. Elephant behaviour and conservation: social relationships, the effects of poaching, and genetic tools for management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archie, Elizabeth A; Chiyo, Patrick I

    2012-02-01

    Genetic tools are increasingly valuable for understanding the behaviour, evolution, and conservation of social species. In African elephants, for instance, genetic data provide basic information on the population genetic causes and consequences of social behaviour, and how human activities alter elephants' social and genetic structures. As such, African elephants provide a useful case study to understand the relationships between social behaviour and population genetic structure in a conservation framework. Here, we review three areas where genetic methods have made important contributions to elephant behavioural ecology and conservation: (1) understanding kin-based relationships in females and the effects of poaching on the adaptive value of elephant relationships, (2) understanding patterns of paternity in elephants and how poaching can alter these patterns, and (3) conservation genetic tools to census elusive populations, track ivory, and understand the behavioural ecology of crop-raiding. By comparing studies from populations that have experienced a range of poaching intensities, we find that human activities have a large effect on elephant behaviour and genetic structure. Poaching disrupts kin-based association patterns, decreases the quality of elephant social relationships, and increases male reproductive skew, with important consequences for population health and the maintenance of genetic diversity. In addition, we find that genetic tools to census populations or gather forensic information are almost always more accurate than non-genetic alternatives. These results contribute to a growing understanding of poaching on animal behaviour, and how genetic tools can be used to understand and conserve social species.

  17. Tuberculosis in Laos, who is at risk: the mahouts or their elephants?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lassausaie, J; Bret, A; Bouapao, X; Chanthavong, V; Castonguay-Vanier, J; Quet, F; Mikota, S K; Théorêt, C; Buisson, Y; Bouchard, B

    2015-04-01

    SUMMARY Tuberculosis (TB) in elephants has the potential to infect humans and is an increasing public health concern. Lao PDR is one of the last countries where elephants are still used for timber extraction and where they live in close contact with their mahouts. There are 500 animals at work in the country, some interacting with wild herds. Although human TB prevalence is known to be high in Laos, studies on elephant TB had yet to be undertaken. From January to July 2012, screening was performed using the ElephantTB Stat-Pak assay on 80 elephants working around the Nam Pouy National Park in Sayaboury Province. This represents more than 18% of the total registered national working elephant population. Here we report that 36% of the elephants were seroreactive to the test. Of these, 31% had contacts with wild individuals, which suggests potential transmission of mycobacteria to the local wild herds. Clinical examination, chest X-rays, sputum microscopy and culture were performed on their 142 mahouts or owners. Despite high TB seroreactivity in elephants, no participant was smear- or culture-positive for Mycobacterium tuberculosis or M. bovis, although atypical mycobacteria were isolated from 4% of participants.

  18. The costs of living with elephants in the areas adjacent to Marsabit National Park and Reserve

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ngene, S.M.; Omondi, P.

    2008-01-01

    Crop raiding by elephants is a serious management problem around protected areas in Kenya. This is because of changes in the land use systems in these areas, with crop farming occurring in areas where it did not previously. Crop raiding by elephants was monitored in the area adjacent to Marsabit Nat

  19. Response of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) to seasonal changes in rainfall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garstang, Michael; Davis, Robert E; Leggett, Keith; Frauenfeld, Oliver W; Greco, Steven; Zipser, Edward; Peterson, Michael

    2014-01-01

    The factors that trigger sudden, seasonal movements of elephants are uncertain. We hypothesized that savannah elephant movements at the end of the dry season may be a response to their detection of distant thunderstorms. Nine elephants carrying Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers were tracked over seven years in the extremely dry and rugged region of northwestern Namibia. The transition date from dry to wet season conditions was determined annually from surface- and satellite-derived rainfall. The distance, location, and timing of rain events relative to the elephants were determined using the Tropical Rainfall Measurement Mission (TRMM) satellite precipitation observations. Behavioral Change Point Analysis (BCPA) was applied to four of these seven years demonstrating a response in movement of these elephants to intra- and inter-seasonal occurrences of rainfall. Statistically significant changes in movement were found prior to or near the time of onset of the wet season and before the occurrence of wet episodes within the dry season, although the characteristics of the movement changes are not consistent between elephants and years. Elephants in overlapping ranges, but following separate tracks, exhibited statistically valid non-random near-simultaneous changes in movements when rainfall was occurring more than 100 km from their location. While the environmental trigger that causes these excursions remains uncertain, rain-system generated infrasound, which can travel such distances and be detected by elephants, is a possible trigger for such changes in movement.

  20. Wild Animals and Justice : The Case of the Dead Elephant in the Room

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kopnina, H.N.

    2016-01-01

    Elephants, the largest terrestrial representatives of the animal kingdom, are highorder mammals with complex ethology and social dynamics, looming large both in natural landscapes and cultural settings in diverse locations.1 Elephants are “wonderful or terrible, depending on where or who you are.”2

  1. Prolactin secretion and ovarian function in cycling and non-cycling African female elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Yuki; Yamamoto, Tatsuya; Watanabe, Gen; Yuto, Natsuki; Keio, Megumi; Narushima, Etsuo; Katayanagi, Masayuki; Nakao, Risa; Morikubo, Syu; Sakurai, Yuko; Kaneko, Mikako; Kaewmanee, Saroch; Taya, Kazuyoshi

    2010-07-01

    Reproduction of captive elephants in zoos has shown a low fecundity and requires improvement. One of the reasons for low fecundity is ovarian dysfunction in many female elephants. To investigate whether prolactin has a correlation with ovarian function in female elephants, the serum concentrations of prolactin, progesterone and estradiol-17beta in four African female elephants (one cycling female and three non-cycling female elephants) were measured. Cyclic patterns of prolactin and estradiol-17beta were observed in the cycling female elephant, which tended to be high during the follicular phase and low during the luteal phase. On the other hand, a cyclic pattern of prolactin was not observed in the non-cycling female elephants. One of the three non-cycling females (Mako) had developed breasts and showed significantly higher average levels of prolactin than the other female elephants. These results suggested that high concentrations of circulating estradiol-17beta during the follicular phase stimulated prolactin secretion. They also suggested that hyperprolactinemia in Mako was one of the causes of the developed mammary glands and ovarian dysfunction.

  2. Survey Sequencing and Comparative Analysis of the Elephant Shark (Callorhinchus milii) Genome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatesh, Byrappa; Kirkness, Ewen F; Loh, Yong-Hwee; Halpern, Aaron L; Lee, Alison P; Johnson, Justin; Dandona, Nidhi; Viswanathan, Lakshmi D; Tay, Alice; Venter, J. Craig; Strausberg, Robert L; Brenner, Sydney

    2007-01-01

    Owing to their phylogenetic position, cartilaginous fishes (sharks, rays, skates, and chimaeras) provide a critical reference for our understanding of vertebrate genome evolution. The relatively small genome of the elephant shark, Callorhinchus milii, a chimaera, makes it an attractive model cartilaginous fish genome for whole-genome sequencing and comparative analysis. Here, the authors describe survey sequencing (1.4× coverage) and comparative analysis of the elephant shark genome, one of the first cartilaginous fish genomes to be sequenced to this depth. Repetitive sequences, represented mainly by a novel family of short interspersed element–like and long interspersed element–like sequences, account for about 28% of the elephant shark genome. Fragments of approximately 15,000 elephant shark genes reveal specific examples of genes that have been lost differentially during the evolution of tetrapod and teleost fish lineages. Interestingly, the degree of conserved synteny and conserved sequences between the human and elephant shark genomes are higher than that between human and teleost fish genomes. Elephant shark contains putative four Hox clusters indicating that, unlike teleost fish genomes, the elephant shark genome has not experienced an additional whole-genome duplication. These findings underscore the importance of the elephant shark as a critical reference vertebrate genome for comparative analysis of the human and other vertebrate genomes. This study also demonstrates that a survey-sequencing approach can be applied productively for comparative analysis of distantly related vertebrate genomes. PMID:17407382

  3. Response of African elephants (Loxodonta africana to seasonal changes in rainfall.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Garstang

    Full Text Available The factors that trigger sudden, seasonal movements of elephants are uncertain. We hypothesized that savannah elephant movements at the end of the dry season may be a response to their detection of distant thunderstorms. Nine elephants carrying Global Positioning System (GPS receivers were tracked over seven years in the extremely dry and rugged region of northwestern Namibia. The transition date from dry to wet season conditions was determined annually from surface- and satellite-derived rainfall. The distance, location, and timing of rain events relative to the elephants were determined using the Tropical Rainfall Measurement Mission (TRMM satellite precipitation observations. Behavioral Change Point Analysis (BCPA was applied to four of these seven years demonstrating a response in movement of these elephants to intra- and inter-seasonal occurrences of rainfall. Statistically significant changes in movement were found prior to or near the time of onset of the wet season and before the occurrence of wet episodes within the dry season, although the characteristics of the movement changes are not consistent between elephants and years. Elephants in overlapping ranges, but following separate tracks, exhibited statistically valid non-random near-simultaneous changes in movements when rainfall was occurring more than 100 km from their location. While the environmental trigger that causes these excursions remains uncertain, rain-system generated infrasound, which can travel such distances and be detected by elephants, is a possible trigger for such changes in movement.

  4. Coping with heat: behavioural and physiological responses of savanna elephants in their natural habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mole, Michael A.; Rodrigues DÁraujo, Shaun; van Aarde, Rudi J.; Mitchell, Duncan; Fuller, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    Most of southern Africa's elephants inhabit environments where environmental temperatures exceed body temperature, but we do not know how elephants respond to such environments. We evaluated the relationships between apparent thermoregulatory behaviour and environmental, skin and core temperatures for tame savanna elephants (Loxodonta africana) that were free-ranging in the hot parts of the day, in their natural environment. Environmental temperature dictated elephant behaviour within a day, with potential consequences for fine-scale habitat selection, space use and foraging. At black globe temperatures of ~30°C, elephants adjusted their behaviour to reduce environmental heat load and increase heat dissipation (e.g. shade use, wetting behaviour). Resting, walking and feeding were also influenced by environmental temperature. By relying on behavioural and autonomic adjustments, the elephants maintained homeothermy, even at environmental temperatures exceeding 40°C. Elephants clearly have the capacity to deal with extreme heat, at least in environments with adequate resources of forage, water and shade. Future conservation actions should provide for the thermoregulatory, resource and spatial needs of elephants. PMID:27757237

  5. Elephant impact on shoot distribution on trees and on rebrowsing by smaller browsers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makhabu, Shimane W.; Skarpe, Christina; Hytteborn, Håkan

    2006-09-01

    In order to determine the effects of a megaherbivore, the African elephant ( Loxodonta africana) on browse available for mesoherbivores, we assessed the vertical distribution of shoots (< 6 mm in diameter) on trees with different accumulated elephant impact. We also determined the foraging responses by a mixed feeder, impala ( Aepyceros melampus) and a browser, greater kudu ( Tragelaphus strepsiceros) which are mesoherbivores. The foraging responses by impala and kudu were in terms of preferences of trees with different accumulated elephant impact levels and whether animals browsed in different height sections in proportion to availability of shoots. We counted shoots in each 20 cm height section up to 2.6 m on trees in 25 m by 25 m plots and on trees observed to be browsed by impala and kudu. In most tree species, individuals with high accumulated elephant impact were shorter and had more shoots at low levels than tree individuals with either low or no accumulated elephant impact. Impala and kudu preferred to browse tree individuals with accumulated elephant impact over those without such impact. Impala and kudu browsed more than expected at height sections with many shoots and less than expected at height sections with fewer shoots indicating a non-linear overmatching foraging response. We suggest that increased shoot abundance at low levels in the canopy might explain part of the observed preferences. Elephants, therefore, seem to facilitate browsing by mesoherbivores by generating 'browsing lawns'. Such benefits need to be considered when making decisions on how to manage populations of megaherbivores like elephant.

  6. Patch-occupancy survey of elephant (Loxodonta africana surrounding Livingstone, Zambia

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    David A. Youldon

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Wild elephants represent the biggest human–wildlife conflict issue in Livingstone, Zambia. However, little is known about their movements. This survey investigated elephants’ habitat use outside a core protected and fenced zone that forms part of Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park, Zambia. Using ‘patch-occupancy’ methodology, indications of elephant presence (feeding behaviour, dung and tracks were surveyed. The survey aimed to assist proposed future monitoring exercises by defining the geographical extent that should be considered to improve accuracy in species abundance estimates. Results were supplemented using collected indications of elephant presence from prior monitoring exercises, and during this survey. Elephant presence was confirmed up to 8 km from the boundary of the protected core habitat, focussed in: (1 an unfenced zone of the national park, (2 along a road leading from the national park to the Dambwa Forest to the north and (3 along two rivers located to the west (Sinde River and east (Maramba River of the core area. Detection probability of elephant presence was high using these methods, and we recommend regular sampling to determine changes in habitat use by elephants, as humans continue to modify land-use patterns.Conservation implications: Identification of elephant ranging behaviour up to 8 km outside of the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park in southern Zambia will assist in managing human– elephant conflict in the area, as well as in assessing this seasonal population’s abundance.

  7. Systematic review on the conservation genetics of African savannah elephants

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    Daniel Zacarias

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Background In this paper we review the conservation genetics of African savannah elephants, aiming to understand the spatio-temporal research trends and their underlying factors. As such, we explore three questions associated to the conservation genetics and molecular ecology of these elephants: (1 what are the research trends concerning the conservation genetics of Loxodonta africana? (2 Do richer countries conduct more research on the genetics of African elephants? (3 Which attributes influence where scholars conduct their research? Materials and Methods We examined available peer-reviewed publications from 1993 to 2014 in complementary online databases, including the ISI/Web of Science (WoS, Scopus and Google Scholar (GS, and searched for publications in scientific journals as well as in the reference section of these publications. We analyzed the annual trend of publications in this field of research, including the number of authors, levels of collaboration among authors, year of publication, publishing journal and the countries from where genetic samples were collected. Additionally, we identified main research clusters, authors, and institutional collaborations, based on co-citation and co-occurrence networks. Results We found that during the study period there was a positive trend in the number of publications and a reduction in the number of authors per paper. Twenty-five countries contributed, with the majority of publications authored by researchers in the USA, Kenya and South Africa. The majority of samples were collected in Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa. Research outputs are associated with the existence of long-term conservation/research projects and research potential as measured by the literacy rate and the number of higher education institutions in a country. Five research clusters were identified, focusing on the origin and evolution of the species, methodological issues and the relatedness among elephant species. Conclusions

  8. The fluidity of blood in African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Windberger, U; Plasenzotti, R; Voracek, Th

    2005-01-01

    The large cellular volume of erythrocytes and the increased plasma concentration of proteins in elephants are factors which potentially affect blood rheology adversely. To verify blood rheology, routine hemorheologic variables were analyzed in four African elephants (Loxodonta africana), housed in the zoo of Vienna. Whole blood viscosity at three different shear rates (WBV at low shear rate: WBV 0.7 s(-1) and WBV 2.4 s(-1); WBV at high shear rate: WBV 94 s(-1) done by LS30, Contraves) and erythrocyte aggregation (aggregation indices AI by LS30; aggregation indices M0, M1 by Myrenne aggregometer) were high (WBV 94 s(-1): 5.368 (5.246/5.648); WBV 2.4 s(-1): 16.291 (15.605/17.629); WBV 0.7 s(-1): 28.28 (25.537/32.173) mPa s; AI 2.4 s(-1): 0.25 (0.23/0.30); AI 0.7 s(-1): 0.24 (0.23/0.28); M0: 7.8 (6.4/8.4); M1: 30.2 (25/31)). Plasma viscosity (PV) was increased as well (1.865 (1.857/1.912) mPa s) compared to other mammalian species. These parameters would indicate a decrease in blood fluidity in elephants. However, erythrocyte rigidity (LORCA, Mechatronics) was decreased, which in contrast, has a promotive effect on peripheral perfusion. Blood rheology of the elephants was determined by a high whole blood and plasma viscosity as the result of pronounced erythrocyte aggregation and high plasma protein concentration. Thus, in the terminal vessels the resistance to flow will be increased. The large erythrocytes, which might impede blood flow further due to geometrical reasons, however, had a pronounced flexibility. We conclude that the effect of the increased inner resistance to peripheral blood flow was counteracted by the decreased rigidity of the erythrocytes to enable an adequate blood flow in African elephants.

  9. Systematic review on the conservation genetics of African savannah elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    Background In this paper we review the conservation genetics of African savannah elephants, aiming to understand the spatio-temporal research trends and their underlying factors. As such, we explore three questions associated to the conservation genetics and molecular ecology of these elephants: (1) what are the research trends concerning the conservation genetics of Loxodonta africana? (2) Do richer countries conduct more research on the genetics of African elephants? (3) Which attributes influence where scholars conduct their research? Materials and Methods We examined available peer-reviewed publications from 1993 to 2014 in complementary online databases, including the ISI/Web of Science (WoS), Scopus and Google Scholar (GS), and searched for publications in scientific journals as well as in the reference section of these publications. We analyzed the annual trend of publications in this field of research, including the number of authors, levels of collaboration among authors, year of publication, publishing journal and the countries from where genetic samples were collected. Additionally, we identified main research clusters, authors, and institutional collaborations, based on co-citation and co-occurrence networks. Results We found that during the study period there was a positive trend in the number of publications and a reduction in the number of authors per paper. Twenty-five countries contributed, with the majority of publications authored by researchers in the USA, Kenya and South Africa. The majority of samples were collected in Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa. Research outputs are associated with the existence of long-term conservation/research projects and research potential as measured by the literacy rate and the number of higher education institutions in a country. Five research clusters were identified, focusing on the origin and evolution of the species, methodological issues and the relatedness among elephant species. Conclusions Research in

  10. Fetal lung development in the elephant reflects the adaptations required for snorkeling in adult life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, John B; Fu, Zhenxing; Gaeth, Ann P; Short, Roger V

    2003-11-14

    The adult elephant is unique among mammals in that the pleural membranes are thickened and the pleural cavity is obliterated by connective tissue. It has been suggested that this peculiar anatomy developed because the animal can snorkel at depth, and this behavior subjects the microvessels in the parietal pleura to a very large transmural pressure. To investigate the development of the parietal pleura, the thickness of the endothoracic fascia (ET) was measured in four fetal African elephants of approximate gestational age 111-130 days, and the appearances were compared with those in human, rabbit, rat and mouse fetuses of approximately the same stage of lung organogenesis. The mean thicknesses of ET in the elephant, human, rabbit, rat and mouse were 403, 53, 29, 27 and 37 microm, respectively. This very early development of a thick parietal pleura in the elephant fetus is consistent with the hypothesis of a long history of snorkeling in the elephant's putative aquatic ancestors.

  11. Molecular characterization of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates from elephants of Nepal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paudel, Sarad; Mikota, Susan K; Nakajima, Chie; Gairhe, Kamal P; Maharjan, Bhagwan; Thapa, Jeewan; Poudel, Ajay; Shimozuru, Michito; Suzuki, Yasuhiko; Tsubota, Toshio

    2014-05-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis was cultured from the lung tissues of 3 captive elephants in Nepal that died with extensive lung lesions. Spoligotyping, TbD1 detection and multi-locus variable number of tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) results suggested 3 isolates belonged to a specific lineage of Indo-Oceanic clade, EAI5 SIT 138. One of the elephant isolates had a new synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) T231C in the gyrA sequence, and the same SNP was also found in human isolates in Nepal. MLVA results and transfer history of the elephants suggested that 2 of them might be infected with M. tuberculosis from the same source. These findings indicated the source of M. tuberculosis infection of those elephants were local residents, presumably their handlers. Further investigation including detailed genotyping of elephant and human isolates is needed to clarify the infection route and eventually prevent the transmission of tuberculosis to susceptible hosts.

  12. Development of the tush and tusk and tusklessness in African elephant (Loxodonta africana

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    E.J. Raubenheimer

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available The embryologic development of the tush and tusk of the African elephant was studied by means of serial histologic sections prepared from elephant embryos with masses varying between Ig and 240 g. Statistics on tusklessness obtained during a four year population control programme in the Kruger National Park were analysed and compared with those reported in other elephant reserves in Southern Africa. Maxillae of eight elephant embryos, the maternal histories of which were available in six cases, were radiographed, dissected and examined microscopically. This study has shown that the tush and tusk develop from one tooth germ in a deciduous to permanent tooth relationship. Tusklessness was found to be unilateral or bilateral and associated with either the absence or presence of a tush. The possible causes of the differences in the frequency of bilateral tusklessness in different elephant populations are discussed.

  13. Cotton fields drive elephant habitat fragmentation in the Mid Zambezi Valley, Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sibanda, Mbulisi; Murwira, Amon

    2012-10-01

    In this study we tested whether cotton fields contribute more than cereal fields to African elephant (Loxodonta africana) habitat loss through its effects on woodland fragmentation in the Mid-Zambezi Valley, Zimbabwe. In order to test this hypothesis, we first mapped cotton and cereal fields using MODIS remotely sensed data. Secondly, we analysed the effect of the area of cotton and cereal fields on woodland fragmentation using regression analysis. We then related the fragmentation indices, particularly edge density with elephant distribution data to test whether elephant distribution was significantly related with woodland fragmentation resulting from cotton fields. Our results showed that cotton fields contributed more to woodland fragmentation than cereal fields. In addition, results showed that the frequency of the African elephant increased where cotton fields were many and small relative to cereal fields. We concluded that cotton fields are the main driver of woodland fragmentation and therefore elephant habitat in the Mid-Zambezi Valley compared with cereal fields.

  14. Asian Media Productions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    This work consists of 12 essays on different aspects of Asian media by Japanese, European, and American scholars, many of whom have themselves been involved in the production of media forms. Working in the fields of anthropology, media and cultural studies, and on the basis of hands-on research, ......, they have written a book on the social practices and cultural attitudes of people producing, reading, watching and listening to different kinds of media in Japan, China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam, Singapore and India.......This work consists of 12 essays on different aspects of Asian media by Japanese, European, and American scholars, many of whom have themselves been involved in the production of media forms. Working in the fields of anthropology, media and cultural studies, and on the basis of hands-on research...

  15. Mood disorders in Asians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeung, Albert; Chang, Doris

    2014-02-01

    Mood disorders are disorders that have a disturbance in mood as the predominant feature. They are common psychiatric disorders and are associated with significant distress and functional impairment. As the theory of mood disorders is based on the philosophy of mind/body dichotomy in the West, it contradicts the holistic tradition of medicine in the East. This may partially explain why many Asians with mood disorders emphasize their physical symptoms in discussions with their treatment providers. In the development of the DSM and ICD diagnostic systems, it is presumed that the diagnostic categories are applicable to all races and ethnicities. Similarly, many consider pharmacological and psychological treatment approaches to mood disorders universally applicable. To effectively treat Asians with mood disorders, clinicians need to customize biological and psychosocial interventions in consideration of patients' potential genetic and cultural differences.

  16. Is Asian Currency Unit Attractive to East Asian Economies?

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Bin Zhang; Fan He

    2007-01-01

    Pegging the RMB exchange rate to the Asian currency unit (ACU) has not, at least in the short term, been proved a better solution than pegging to the US dollar or pegging to a G-3 (US$, Japaneseyen and euro) currency basket. Although the Asian currency unit can help Asian economies to keep the relative price of regional currencies stable, the cost of joining a formal regional monetary cooperation is the relinquishment of the autonomy of their domestic policies. Asian monetary cooperation needs to provide more potential benefits if it is to attract Asian economies. We argue that Asian monetary cooperation should be designed to solve the problem of regional trade imbalance, and regional exchange rate policy coordination should be adopted as the first step towards exchange rate cooperation.

  17. Qualitative and quantitative aspects of the microanatomy of the African elephant cerebellar cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maseko, Busisiwe C; Jacobs, Bob; Spocter, Muhammad A; Sherwood, Chet C; Hof, Patrick R; Manger, Paul R

    2013-01-01

    The current study provides a number of novel observations on the organization and structure of the cerebellar cortex of the African elephant by using a combination of basic neuroanatomical and immunohistochemical stains with Golgi and stereologic analysis. While the majority of our observations indicate that the cerebellar cortex of the African elephant is comparable to other mammalian species, several features were unique to the elephant. The three-layered organization of the cerebellar cortex, the neuronal types and some aspects of the expression of calcium-binding proteins were common to a broad range of mammalian species. The Lugaro neurons observed in the elephant were greatly enlarged in comparison to those of other large-brained mammals, suggesting a possible alteration in the processing of neural information in the elephant cerebellar cortex. Analysis of Golgi impregnations indicated that the dendritic complexity of the different interneuron types was higher in elephants than other mammals. Expression of parvalbumin in the parallel fibers and calbindin expressed in the stellate and basket cells also suggested changes in the elephant cerebellar neuronal circuitry. The stereologic analysis confirmed and extended previous observations by demonstrating that neuronal density is low in the elephant cerebellar cortex, providing for a larger volume fraction of the neuropil. With previous results indicating that the elephants have the largest relative cerebellar size amongst mammals, and one of the absolutely largest mammalian cerebella, the current observations suggest that the elephants have a greater volume of a potentially more complexly organized cerebellar cortex compared to other mammals. This quantitatively larger and more complex cerebellar cortex likely represents part of the neural machinery required to control the complex motor patterns involved in movement of the trunk and the production of infrasonic vocalizations.

  18. Impact of elephant on two woody trees, Boscia oleoides and Pappea capensis, in an arid thicket-Nama Karoo mosaic, Greater Addo Elephant National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marietjie Landman

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Despite extensive evidence of the influences of elephant on woody trees in savannah habitats, effects on trees in the succulent thickets of the Eastern Cape are relatively poorly described. Our study investigates the role and intensity of elephant impacts on Pappea capensis and the relatively rare Boscia oleoides in an arid thicket-Nama Karoo mosaic habitat of the Greater Addo Elephant National Park. We show that roughly 19% of the B. oleoides and nearly half of the P. capensis individuals recorded showed signs of elephant impact. Elephant often toppled our study trees, and where these individuals were uprooted, mortalities occurred: B. oleoides ~ 44% of the impacted trees (4 individuals; P. capensis ~ 22% of the impacted trees (29 individuals.Conservation implications: Whilst this study is restricted by limited spatial and temporal replication, P. capensis mortalities caused by elephant occurred at a rate exceeding that of other processes. Our results provide insight into the severity of the measured changes and the need to reduce the impacts. However, it would be critically important to establish the specific driver of elephant–tree interactions before any management intervention is implemented.

  19. Current Update in Asian Rhinoplasty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clyde H. Ishii, MD, FACS

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Summary: There has been a tremendous growth of cosmetic surgery among Asians worldwide. Rhinoplasty is second only to blepharoplasty in terms of popularity among Asians regarding cosmetic surgical procedures. Most Asians seek to improve their appearance while maintaining the essential features of their ethnicity. There are considerable ethnic nasal and facial variations in this population alone. Successful rhinoplasty in Asians must take into account underlying anatomic differences between Asians and whites. Due to ethnic variations, cultural differences, and occasional language barriers, careful preoperative counseling is necessary to align the patient’s expectations with the limitations of the procedure. This article will review the many facets of Asian rhinoplasty as it is practiced today.

  20. Elephant transcriptome provides insights into the evolution of eutherian placentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Zhuo-Cheng; Sterner, Kirstin N; Romero, Roberto; Than, Nandor Gabor; Gonzalez, Juan M; Weckle, Amy; Xing, Jun; Benirschke, Kurt; Goodman, Morris; Wildman, Derek E

    2012-01-01

    The chorioallantoic placenta connects mother and fetus in eutherian pregnancies. In order to understand the evolution of the placenta and provide further understanding of placenta biology, we sequenced the transcriptome of a term placenta of an African elephant (Loxodonta africana) and compared these data with RNA sequence and microarray data from other eutherian placentas including human, mouse, and cow. We characterized the composition of 55,910 expressed sequence tag (i.e., cDNA) contigs using our custom annotation pipeline. A Markov algorithm was used to cluster orthologs of human, mouse, cow, and elephant placenta transcripts. We found 2,963 genes are commonly expressed in the placentas of these eutherian mammals. Gene ontology categories previously suggested to be important for placenta function (e.g., estrogen receptor signaling pathway, cell motion and migration, and adherens junctions) were significantly enriched in these eutherian placenta-expressed genes. Genes duplicated in different lineages and also specifically expressed in the placenta contribute to the great diversity observed in mammalian placenta anatomy. We identified 1,365 human lineage-specific, 1,235 mouse lineage-specific, 436 cow lineage-specific, and 904 elephant-specific placenta-expressed (PE) genes. The most enriched clusters of human-specific PE genes are signal/glycoprotein and immunoglobulin, and humans possess a deeply invasive human hemochorial placenta that comes into direct contact with maternal immune cells. Inference of phylogenetically conserved and derived transcripts demonstrates the power of comparative transcriptomics to trace placenta evolution and variation across mammals and identified candidate genes that may be important in the normal function of the human placenta, and their dysfunction may be related to human pregnancy complications.

  1. Ticks of four-toed elephant shrews and Southern African hedgehogs

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    Ivan G. Horak

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Several studies on ticks infesting small mammals, including elephant shrews, have been conducted in South Africa; however, these studies have included only a single four-toed elephant shrew and no hedgehogs. This study thus aimed to identify and quantify the ixodid ticks infesting four-toed elephant shrews and Southern African hedgehogs. Four-toed elephant shrews (Petrodromus tetradactylus were trapped in dense shrub undergrowth in a nature reserve in north-eastern KwaZulu-Natal. They were separately housed, first in cages and later in glass terraria fitted with wire-mesh bases to allow detached ticks to fall through for collection. Southern African hedgehogs (Atelerix frontalis were hand caught on a farm in the eastern region of the Northern Cape Province and all visible ticks were collected by means of tweezers while the animals were anaesthetised. The ticks from each animal were preserved separately in 70% ethanol for later identification and counting. The immature stages of five ixodid tick species were collected from the elephant shrews, of which Rhipicephalus muehlensi was the most common. It has not been recorded previously on any species of elephant shrew. Three ixodid tick species were collected from the hedgehogs. Large numbers of adult Haemaphysalis colesbergensis, which has not been encountered previously on hedgehogs, were collected from these animals. Four-toed elephant shrews are good hosts of the larvae and nymphs of R. muehlensi, and Southern African hedgehogs are good hosts of adult H. colesbergensis.

  2. Field application of serodiagnostics to identify elephants with tuberculosis prior to case confirmation by culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyashchenko, Konstantin P; Greenwald, Rena; Esfandiari, Javan; Mikota, Susan; Miller, Michele; Moller, Torsten; Vogelnest, Larry; Gairhe, Kamal P; Robbe-Austerman, Suelee; Gai, Jackie; Waters, W Ray

    2012-08-01

    Three serologic methods for antibody detection in elephant tuberculosis (TB), the multiantigen print immunoassay (MAPIA), ElephantTB STAT-PAK kit, and DPP VetTB test, were evaluated using serial serum samples from 14 captive elephants infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis in 5 countries. In all cases, serological testing was performed prior to the diagnosis of TB by mycobacterial culture of trunk wash or tissue samples collected at necropsy. All elephants produced antibody responses to M. tuberculosis antigens, with 13/14 recognizing ESAT-6 and/or CFP10 proteins. The findings supported the high serodiagnostic test accuracy in detecting infections months to years before M. tuberculosis could be isolated from elephants. The MAPIA and/or DPP VetTB assay demonstrated the potential for monitoring antimycobacterial therapy and predicting TB relapse in treated elephants when continuously used in the posttreatment period. History of exposure to TB and past treatment information should be taken into consideration for proper interpretation of the antibody test results. Data suggest that the more frequent trunk wash culture testing of seropositive elephants may enhance the efficiency of the TB diagnostic algorithm, leading to earlier treatment with improved outcomes.

  3. Genetic identification of five strongyle nematode parasites in wild african elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLean, E R; Kinsella, J M; Chiyo, P; Obanda, V; Moss, C; Archie, E A

    2012-07-01

    African savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana) are an ecologically and economically important species in many African habitats. However, despite the importance of elephants, research on their parasites is limited, especially in wild populations. Currently, we lack genetic tools to identify elephant parasites. We present genetic markers from ribosomal DNA (rDNA) and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to identify five elephant-specific nematode parasites in the family Strongylidae: Murshidia linstowi, Murshidia longicaudata, Murshidia africana, Quilonia africana, and Khalilia sameera. We collected adult nematodes from feces deposited by wild elephants living in Amboseli National Park, Kenya. Using both morphologic and genetic techniques, we found that the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region in rDNA provides a reliable marker to distinguish these species of strongyles. We found no evidence for cryptic genetic species within these morphologic species according to the cox-1 region of mtDNA. Levels of genetic diversity in strongyles from elephants were consistent with the genetic diversity seen within other strongyle species. We anticipate that these results will be a useful tool for identifying gastrointestinal nematode parasites in elephants.

  4. A single glycine-alanine exchange directs ligand specificity of the elephant progestin receptor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Wierer

    Full Text Available The primary gestagen of elephants is 5α-dihydroprogesterone (DHP, which is unlike all other mammals studied until now. The level of DHP in elephants equals that of progesterone in other mammals, and elephants are able to bind DHP with similar affinity to progesterone indicating a unique ligand-binding specificity of the elephant progestin receptor (PR. Using site-directed mutagenesis in combination with in vitro binding studies we here report that this change in specificity is due to a single glycine to alanine exchange at position 722 (G722A of PR, which specifically increases DHP affinity while not affecting binding of progesterone. By conducting molecular dynamics simulations comparing human and elephant PR ligand-binding domains (LBD, we observed that the alanine methyl group at position 722 is able to push the DHP A-ring into a position similar to progesterone. In the human PR, the DHP A-ring position is twisted towards helix 3 of PR thereby disturbing the hydrogen bond pattern around the C3-keto group, resulting in a lower binding affinity. Furthermore, we observed that the elephant PR ligand-binding pocket is more rigid than the human analogue, which probably explains the higher affinity towards both progesterone and DHP. Interestingly, the G722A substitution is not elephant-specific, rather it is also present in five independent lineages of mammalian evolution, suggesting a special role of the substitution for the development of distinct mammalian gestagen systems.

  5. The relationship between social behaviour and habitat familiarity in African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinter-Wollman, Noa; Isbell, Lynne A; Hart, Lynette A

    2009-03-22

    Social associations with conspecifics can expedite animals' acclimation to novel environments. However, the benefits gained from sociality may change as the habitat becomes familiar. Furthermore, the particular individuals with whom animals associate upon arrival at a new place, familiar conspecifics or knowledgeable unfamiliar residents, may influence the type of information they acquire about their new home. To examine animals' social dynamics in novel habitats, we studied the social behaviour of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) translocated into a novel environment. We found that the translocated elephants' association with conspecifics decreased over time supporting our hypothesis that sociality provides added benefits in novel environments. In addition, we found a positive correlation between body condition and social association, suggesting that elephants gain direct benefits from sociality. Furthermore, the translocated elephants associated significantly less than expected with the local residents and more than expected with familiar, but not necessarily genetically related, translocated elephants. The social segregation between the translocated and resident elephants declined over time, suggesting that elephants can integrate into an existing social setting. Knowledge of the relationship between sociality and habitat familiarity is highly important in our constantly changing world to both conservation practice and our understanding of animals' behaviour in novel environments.

  6. Laparoscopic vasectomy in African savannah elephant (Loxodonta africana); surgical technique and results.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marais, Hendrik J; Hendrickson, Dean A; Stetter, Mark; Zuba, Jeffery R; Penning, Mark; Siegal-Willott, Jess; Hardy, Christine

    2013-12-01

    Several small, enclosed reserves in southern Africa are experiencing significant elephant population growth, which has resulted in associated environmental damage and changes in biodiversity. Although several techniques exist to control elephant populations, e.g., culling, relocation, and immunocontraception, the technique of laparoscopic vasectomy of free-ranging bull elephants was investigated. Bilateral vasectomies were performed in 45 elephants. Of these elephants, one died within 24 hr of recovery and two had complications during surgery but recovered uneventfully. Histologic examination confirmed the resected tissue as ductus deferens in all the bulls. Most animals recovered uneventfully and showed no abnormal behavior after surgery. Complications recorded included incisional dehiscence, 1 full-thickness and 2 partial-thickness lacerations of the large intestine, and initial sling-associated complications, for example, deep radial nerve paresis. One bull was found dead 6 weeks after surgery without showing any prior abnormal signs. Vasectomy in free-ranging African bull elephants may be effectively performed in their normal environment. The surgical procedure can be used as a realistic population management tool in free-ranging elephants without major anesthetic, surgical, or postoperative complications.

  7. Heart Disease and Asians and Pacific Islanders

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Data > Minority Population Profiles > Asian American > Heart Disease Heart Disease and Asians and Pacific Islanders Overall, Asian American ... are less likely than white adults to have heart disease and they are less likely to die from ...

  8. Age profiles in elephant and mammoth bone assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haynes, Gary

    1985-11-01

    Age profiles of modern African elephant ( Loxodonta africana) populations are significantly affected by drought conditions that cause local die-offs. Subadult animals die in proportions that may be nearly twice what is recorded in live populations. Such biasing of death sample age profiles might also have occurred during late Pleistocene die-offs of Mammuthus. This comparative study of modern and fossil proboscidean age structures supports a tentative interpretation that late Pleistocene extinction of Mammuthus (at least in the southwestern United States) resulted from severe drought conditions, at which Clovis hunters were witnesses, but not necessarily frequent participants.

  9. Taxonomy Icon Data: Southern elephant seal [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available Southern elephant seal Mirounga leonina Chordata/Vertebrata/Mammalia/Theria/Eutheria/Carnivora Mirounga_leon...ina_L.png Mirounga_leonina_NL.png Mirounga_leonina_S.png Mirounga_leonina_NS.png ht...tp://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Mirounga+leonina&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Mirounga+leon...ina&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Mirounga+leon...ina&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Mirounga+leonina&t=NS ...

  10. Organization and chemical neuroanatomy of the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patzke, Nina; Olaleye, Olatunbosun; Haagensen, Mark; Hof, Patrick R; Ihunwo, Amadi O; Manger, Paul R

    2014-09-01

    Elephants are thought to possess excellent long-term spatial-temporal and social memory, both memory types being at least in part hippocampus dependent. Although the hippocampus has been extensively studied in common laboratory mammalian species and humans, much less is known about comparative hippocampal neuroanatomy, and specifically that of the elephant. Moreover, the data available regarding hippocampal size of the elephant are inconsistent. The aim of the current study was to re-examine hippocampal size and provide a detailed neuroanatomical description of the hippocampus in the African elephant. In order to examine the hippocampal size the perfusion-fixed brains of three wild-caught adult male African elephants, aged 20-30 years, underwent MRI scanning. For the neuroanatomical description brain sections containing the hippocampus were stained for Nissl, myelin, calbindin, calretinin, parvalbumin and doublecortin. This study demonstrates that the elephant hippocampus is not unduly enlarged, nor specifically unusual in its internal morphology. The elephant hippocampus has a volume of 10.84 ± 0.33 cm³ and is slightly larger than the human hippocampus (10.23 cm(3)). Histological analysis revealed the typical trilaminated architecture of the dentate gyrus (DG) and the cornu ammonis (CA), although the molecular layer of the dentate gyrus appears to have supernumerary sublaminae compared to other mammals. The three main architectonic fields of the cornu ammonis (CA1, CA2, and CA3) could be clearly distinguished. Doublecortin immunostaining revealed the presence of adult neurogenesis in the elephant hippocampus. Thus, the elephant exhibits, for the most part, what might be considered a typically mammalian hippocampus in terms of both size and architecture.

  11. South Asian Cluster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ionel Sergiu Pirju

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This article aims at presenting the South Asian cluster composed of India, Indonesia, Iran and Malaysia, the intercultural values that characterizes it, the supported leadership style and tracing the main macroeconomic considerations which characterizes them. The research is synchronic, analysing the contemporary situation of these countries without reference to their evolution in time, by using the positivist paradigm that explains the reality at one point. It will be analysed the overall cluster with the existing interactions between the countries that composes it, while the article being one of information will avoid building recommendation, or new theories.

  12. CONSERVATION. Genetic assignment of large seizures of elephant ivory reveals Africa's major poaching hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasser, S K; Brown, L; Mailand, C; Mondol, S; Clark, W; Laurie, C; Weir, B S

    2015-07-03

    Poaching of elephants is now occurring at rates that threaten African populations with extinction. Identifying the number and location of Africa's major poaching hotspots may assist efforts to end poaching and facilitate recovery of elephant populations. We genetically assign origin to 28 large ivory seizures (≥0.5 metric tons) made between 1996 and 2014, also testing assignment accuracy. Results suggest that the major poaching hotspots in Africa may be currently concentrated in as few as two areas. Increasing law enforcement in these two hotspots could help curtail future elephant losses across Africa and disrupt this organized transnational crime.

  13. Plasma testosterone levels in relation to musth in the male African Elephant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.J Hall-Martin

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available A long-term study of the behaviour and ecology of the African elephant Loxodonta africana was begun in the Addo Elephant National Park in 1976. During the period June 1976 to March 1979 regular observations were made on all animals. Every individual elephant could be recognised (the population was less than 100 animals and every individual was seen several times a month. From the start of the study records were kept of whether the temporal gland was secreting or not for every animal at every observation.

  14. Tuberculosis in elephants-a reemergent disease: diagnostic dilemmas, the natural history of infection, and new immunological tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maslow, J N; Mikota, S K

    2015-05-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) in elephants has been described since ancient times. However, it was not until 1996 when infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis was identified in a herd of circus elephants that significant research into this disease began. The epidemiology and natural history of TB were unknown in elephants since there had been no comprehensive screening programs, and diagnostic techniques developed for cervidae and bovidae were of unknown value. And, while precepts of test and slaughter were the norm for cattle and deer, this was considered untenable for an endangered species. With no precedent for the treatment of TB in animals, treatment regimens for elephants were extrapolated from human protocols, which guided changes to the Guidelines for the Control of Tuberculosis in Elephants. In the absence of diagnostic testing to confirm cure in elephants, the efficacy of these treatment regimens is only beginning to be understood as treated elephants die and are examined postmortem. However, because of pressures arising from public relations related to elephant husbandry and the added considerations of TB infection in animals (whether real or imagined), sharing of information to aid in research and treatment has been problematic. Here we review the challenges and successes of the diagnosis of tuberculosis in elephants and discuss the natural history of the disease to put the work of Landolfi et al on the immunological response to tuberculosis in elephants in perspective.

  15. The social and ecological integration of captive-raised adolescent male African elephants (Loxodonta africana into a wild population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate Evans

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A rapid rise in the number of captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana used in the tourism industry in southern Africa and orphaned elephants in human care has led to concerns about their long-term management, particularly males. One solution is to release them into the wild at adolescence, when young males naturally leave their herd. However, this raises significant welfare concerns: little is known about how well released elephants integrate into wild populations and whether they pose a greater threat to humans than wild elephants. We document the release of three captive-raised adolescent male African elephants in the Okavango Delta, Botswana. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Despite having been part of a herd of working elephants for at least eight years, the three males progressively integrated into the complex fission-fusion society of wild bull elephants. In the three years following release, they showed no tendency to be closer to human habitation, and there were no significant differences between wild and captive-raised adolescent males in the total number of social interactions, size of ranges and habitat use. However, the captive-raised elephants sparred less and vocalised more, and spent more time alone and in smaller social groups. Thereafter the released elephants continued to expand their ranges and interact with both mixed-sex herds and males. One male was shot by farmers 94 months after release, along with ten wild elephants, on a ranch outside the protected area. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We show that captive-raised adolescent male elephants can integrate into a wild population. Long-term studies are required to determine the longevity, breeding success, and eventual fate of released male elephants, but we identified no significant short-term welfare problems for the released elephants or recipient population. Release of captive-raised mammals with complex social systems is a husbandry option that should be

  16. The Asian Newspaper's Reluctant Revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lent, John A., Ed.

    This book is composed of 19 articles written by both Asian and American scholars on the history and present conditions of newspapers in 15 Asian nations: China, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Australia, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, South Vietnam, Ceylon, India, and Pakistan. Two overviews of the Asian…

  17. South Asian Families in Diaspora

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Singla, Rashmi

    2008-01-01

      South Asian Family in Diaspora: Retreat from marriage, myth or reality?   This paper proposes to explore the dynamics of close ties in the South Asian families in the Nordic countries, especially Denmark through intimate partnership formation in the context of late modern societal discourse...

  18. Were Malagasy Uncarina fruits dispersed by the extinct elephant bird?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Illing

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available We hypothesise that the spiny fruits of the endemic Madagascar
    genus Uncarina (Pedaliaceae are trample burrs that evolved to be
    dispersed on the feet of the extinct elephant bird (Aepyornis. Our
    evidence is: i the morphology of the fruit with its large grapple
    hooks is more likely to attach to a foot than to adhere to fur and
    ii the presentation of mature fruits on the ground rather than in the
    canopy. These differences to adhesive burrs make lemurs unlikely
    dispersers. We argue, given the absence of other large terrestrial
    mammals in Madagascar, that the most likely dispersers of
    Uncarina fruits were the extinct large birds. If correct, our hypothesis
    has implications for conservation of Uncarina, the biogeography
    of the elephant birds and dispersal biology. For
    example, we predict that the demography of Uncarina will be
    skewed towards adult plants, and that the dispersal mutualism
    could possibly be rescued by domestic animals.

  19. No evidence for an elephant-termite feedback loop in Sand Forest, South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lagendijk, D. D G; Davies, A. B.; Eggleton, P.; Slotow, R.

    2016-01-01

    Termites and mammalian herbivores might derive mutual benefit from each other through positive feedback loops, but empirical evidence is lacking. One suggested positive feedback loop is between termites and elephant, both ecosystem engineers. Termites, as decomposer organisms, contribute to nutrient

  20. Additions to the checklist of birds of the Addo Elephant National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.H GRobler

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available Since the original checklist of the birds of the Addo Elephant National Park (AENP was published in 1965 by Liversidge, further species were added by Penzhorn & Morris (1969 and Penzhorn & Van Straaten (1976.

  1. Fighting Asian soybean rust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caspar eLangenbach

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Phakopsora pachyrhizi is a biotrophic fungus provoking Asian soybean rust (SBR disease. SBR poses a major threat to global soybean production. Though several resistance genes provided soybean immunity to certain P. pachyrhizi races, the pathogen swiftly overcame this resistance. Therefore, fungicides are the only current means to control SBR. However, insensitivity to fungicides is soaring in P. pachyrhizi and, therefore, alternative measures are needed for SBR control. In this article, we discuss the different approaches for fighting SBR and their potential, disadvantages, and advantages over other measures. These encompass conventional breeding for SBR resistance, transgenic approaches, exploitation of transcription factors, secondary metabolites, and antimicrobial peptides, RNAi/HIGS, and biocontrol strategies. It seems that an integrating approach exploiting different measures is likely to provide the best possible means for the effective control of SBR.

  2. The Confucian Asian cluster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ionel Sergiu Pirju

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The Confucian Asian cluster consists of China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and Taiwan. Confucian tradition countries were defined by achieving a consistent performance in the global economy, they still representing the major competitors in the EU and North American countries. Their progress is defined by a great national management that was able to influence beneficial management systems applied in organizations, these rules characterized by authority; aims to ensure the confidence in business. This article will present the intercultural values characterizing it, the leadership style and also tracing major macroeconomic considerations. The research is synchronic, analysing the contemporary situation of these countries, and the analysis will be interdisciplinary exploratory, identifying specific regional cultural elements.

  3. Visualizing sound emission of elephant vocalizations: evidence for two rumble production types.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela S Stoeger

    Full Text Available Recent comparative data reveal that formant frequencies are cues to body size in animals, due to a close relationship between formant frequency spacing, vocal tract length and overall body size. Accordingly, intriguing morphological adaptations to elongate the vocal tract in order to lower formants occur in several species, with the size exaggeration hypothesis being proposed to justify most of these observations. While the elephant trunk is strongly implicated to account for the low formants of elephant rumbles, it is unknown whether elephants emit these vocalizations exclusively through the trunk, or whether the mouth is also involved in rumble production. In this study we used a sound visualization method (an acoustic camera to record rumbles of five captive African elephants during spatial separation and subsequent bonding situations. Our results showed that the female elephants in our analysis produced two distinct types of rumble vocalizations based on vocal path differences: a nasally- and an orally-emitted rumble. Interestingly, nasal rumbles predominated during contact calling, whereas oral rumbles were mainly produced in bonding situations. In addition, nasal and oral rumbles varied considerably in their acoustic structure. In particular, the values of the first two formants reflected the estimated lengths of the vocal paths, corresponding to a vocal tract length of around 2 meters for nasal, and around 0.7 meters for oral rumbles. These results suggest that African elephants may be switching vocal paths to actively vary vocal tract length (with considerable variation in formants according to context, and call for further research investigating the function of formant modulation in elephant vocalizations. Furthermore, by confirming the use of the elephant trunk in long distance rumble production, our findings provide an explanation for the extremely low formants in these calls, and may also indicate that formant lowering functions to

  4. Flips from 4-folds with isolated complete intersection singularities whose downstairs have rational bi-elephants

    CERN Document Server

    Kachi, Y

    1996-01-01

    We shall investigate a flipping contraction g : X -> Y from a 4-fold X with at most isolated complete intersection singularities. If Y has an anti-bi-canonical divisor (=bi-elephant) with only rational singularities, then g carries an inductive structure chained up by blow-ups (La Torre Pendente), and in particular the flip exists. This naturally contains Miles Reid's `Pagoda' as an anti-canonical divisor (=elephant) and its proper transforms.

  5. Molecular characterization of adipose tissue in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nilsson, Emeli M; Fainberg, Hernan P; Choong, Siew S; Giles, Thomas C; Sells, James; May, Sean; Stansfield, Fiona J; Allen, William R; Emes, Richard D; Mostyn, Alison; Mongan, Nigel P; Yon, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Adipose tissue (AT) is a dynamic and flexible organ with regulatory roles in physiological functions including metabolism, reproduction and inflammation; secreted adipokines, including leptin, and fatty acids facilitate many of these roles. The African elephant (Loxodonta africana) is experiencing serious challenges to optimal reproduction in captivity. The physiological and molecular basis of this impaired fertility remains unknown. AT production of leptin is a crucial molecular link between nutritional status, adiposity and fertility in many species. We propose that leptin has a similar function in the African elephant. African elephant visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue (AT) was obtained from both sexes and a range of ages including females with known pregnancy status. RNA was extracted and histological sections created and analyzed by microarray, PCR and immunohistochemistry respectively. Gas-chromatography was used to determine the fatty acid composition of AT. Microarray expression profiling was used to compare gene expression profiles of AT from pre-pubertal versus reproductively competent adult African elephants. This study demonstrates, for the first time, leptin mRNA and protein expression in African elephant AT. The derived protein sequence of the elephant leptin protein was exploited to determine its relationship within the class I helical cytokine superfamily, which indicates that elephant leptin is most closely related to the leptin orthologs of Oryctolagus cuniculus (European rabbit), Lepus oiostolus (woolly hare), and members of the Ochotonidae (Pika). Immunohistological analysis identified considerable leptin staining within the cytoplasm of adipocytes. Significant differences in fatty acid profiles between pregnant and non-pregnant animals were revealed, most notably a reduction in both linoleic and α linoleic acid in pregnant animals. This report forms the basis for future studies to address the effect of nutrient composition and body

  6. Chemical composition of elephant grass silages supplemented with different levels of dehydrated cashew bagasse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danillo Glaydson Farias Guerra

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the present study was to evaluate the chemical composition of elephant grass silages supplemented with different levels dried cashew bagasse (DCB. Our experiment used a randomized design replicated four times, each replicate consisting of the following five treatments: 100% elephant grass; 95% elephant grass + 5% DCB; 90% elephant grass + 10% DCB; 85% elephant grass + 15% DCB; and 80% elephant grass + 20% DCB. The elephant grass was cut manually to a residual height of 5 cm at 80 days of age, and cashew bagasse was obtained from the processing of cashew stalks used in fruit pulp manufacturing in Mossoró/RN. Plastic buckets were used as experimental silos, and 90 days after ensiling the experimental silos were opened and the contents analyzed. The addition of dried cashew bagasse to silage linearly increased the levels of dried matter and crude protein by 0.59% and 0.13%, respectively, for each 1% addition (P < 0.05. The neutral detergent fiber and acid detergent content of the silages was reduced by 0.22% and 0.09%, respectively, for each 1% addition of the bagasse. The total carbohydrate content was not influenced by the bagasse addition (P > 0.05, and averaged 82.29%. The levels of non-fiber carbohydrate showed linear growth (P < 0.05 as the dehydrated cashew bagasse was added, and pH and ammoniacal nitrogen levels were reduced. The addition of the dehydrated bagasse to elephant grass silage improves its chemical composition, and it can be effectively added up to the level of 20%.

  7. Long-term monitoring of Dzanga Bai forest elephants: forest clearing use patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkalo, Andrea K; Wrege, Peter H; Wittemyer, George

    2013-01-01

    Individual identification of the relatively cryptic forest elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis) at forest clearings currently provides the highest quality monitoring data on this ecologically important but increasingly threatened species. Here we present baseline data from the first 20 years of an individually based study of this species, conducted at the Dzanga Clearing, Central African Republic. A total of 3,128 elephants were identified over the 20-year study (1,244 adults; 675 females, 569 males). It took approximately four years for the majority of elephants visiting the clearing to be identified, but new elephants entered the clearing every year of the study. The study population was relatively stable, varying from 1,668 to 1,864 individuals (including juveniles and infants), with increasingly fewer males than females over time. The age-class distribution for females remained qualitatively unchanged between 1995 and 2010, while the proportion of adult males decreased from 20% to 10%, likely reflecting increased mortality. Visitation patterns by individuals were highly variable, with some elephants visiting monthly while others were ephemeral users with visits separated by multiple years. The number of individuals in the clearing at any time varied between 40 and 100 individuals, and there was little evidence of a seasonal pattern in this variation. The number of elephants entering the clearing together (defined here as a social group) averaged 1.49 (range 1-12) for males and 2.67 (range 1-14) for females. This collation of 20 years of intensive forest elephant monitoring provides the first detailed, long term look at the ecology of bai visitation for this species, offering insight to the ecological significance and motivation for bai use, social behavior, and threats to forest elephants. We discuss likely drivers (rainfall, compression, illegal killing, etc.) influencing bai visitation rates. This study provides the baseline for future demographic and behavioral

  8. Molecular characterization of adipose tissue in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emeli M Nilsson

    Full Text Available Adipose tissue (AT is a dynamic and flexible organ with regulatory roles in physiological functions including metabolism, reproduction and inflammation; secreted adipokines, including leptin, and fatty acids facilitate many of these roles. The African elephant (Loxodonta africana is experiencing serious challenges to optimal reproduction in captivity. The physiological and molecular basis of this impaired fertility remains unknown. AT production of leptin is a crucial molecular link between nutritional status, adiposity and fertility in many species. We propose that leptin has a similar function in the African elephant. African elephant visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue (AT was obtained from both sexes and a range of ages including females with known pregnancy status. RNA was extracted and histological sections created and analyzed by microarray, PCR and immunohistochemistry respectively. Gas-chromatography was used to determine the fatty acid composition of AT. Microarray expression profiling was used to compare gene expression profiles of AT from pre-pubertal versus reproductively competent adult African elephants. This study demonstrates, for the first time, leptin mRNA and protein expression in African elephant AT. The derived protein sequence of the elephant leptin protein was exploited to determine its relationship within the class I helical cytokine superfamily, which indicates that elephant leptin is most closely related to the leptin orthologs of Oryctolagus cuniculus (European rabbit, Lepus oiostolus (woolly hare, and members of the Ochotonidae (Pika. Immunohistological analysis identified considerable leptin staining within the cytoplasm of adipocytes. Significant differences in fatty acid profiles between pregnant and non-pregnant animals were revealed, most notably a reduction in both linoleic and α linoleic acid in pregnant animals. This report forms the basis for future studies to address the effect of nutrient composition

  9. Fencing elephants: The hidden politics of wildlife fencing in Laikipia, Kenya

    OpenAIRE

    Evans, Lauren A.; Adams, William M

    2015-01-01

    This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from Elsevier via http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.landusepol.2015.11.008 Conservation is a fundamentally spatial pursuit. Human?elephant conflict (HEC), in particular crop-raiding, is a significant and complex conservation problem wherever elephants and people occupy the same space. Conservationists and wildlife managers build electrified fences as a technical solution to this problem. Fences provide a spatial means of cont...

  10. Elephant grass ensiled with wheat bran compared with corn silage in diets for lactating goats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacianelly Karla da Silva

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of wheat bran as an additive in elephant-grass silage on intake and digestibility of the nutrients, ingestive behavior, and yield and chemical composition of milk. Eight goats with 45 days of lactation were distributed in a (4 × 4 Latin square design.The treatments consisted of corn silage (CS, elephant-grass silage without wheat bran (EGS, elephant-grass silage with 10% wheat bran (EGS+10%WB, and elephant-grass silage with 20% wheat bran (EGS+20% WB. There was no difference in dry matter (DM intake between diets EGS and CS in g d−1. However, the animals fed EGS+10%WB had lower DM and organic matter (OM intakes than the animals fed CS in g kg−1 d−1 of body weight. There were lower non-fiber carbohydrate and metabolize energy intakes by animals fed diets based on elephant-grass silages than those fed CS. The EGS+20%WB diet provided lower digestibility coefficients of DM, OM, crude protein, ether extract, neutral detergent fiber (NDF and digestible nutrients of the diet than the diet with CS. The NDF digestibility coefficient with diet EGS was greater than that obtained with diet CS. The diets with corn and elephant-grass silages provided similar milk yield levels. However, the animals fed diets based on EGS+20% WB produced less total-solids-corrected milk than the animals fed CS. No difference was found in the milk physicochemical properties and ingestive behavior of goats in this study. Corn silage can be replaced by elephant-grass silage harvested at 50 days of regrowth and elephant-grass silage with 10% wheat bran without influencing goat performance, behavioral variables, physiological variables, milk yield or the milk physicochemical properties.

  11. Phylogenomic analyses reveal convergent patterns of adaptive evolution in elephant and human ancestries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Morris; Sterner, Kirstin N; Islam, Munirul; Uddin, Monica; Sherwood, Chet C; Hof, Patrick R; Hou, Zhuo-Cheng; Lipovich, Leonard; Jia, Hui; Grossman, Lawrence I; Wildman, Derek E

    2009-12-01

    Specific sets of brain-expressed genes, such as aerobic energy metabolism genes, evolved adaptively in the ancestry of humans and may have evolved adaptively in the ancestry of other large-brained mammals. The recent addition of genomes from two afrotherians (elephant and tenrec) to the expanding set of publically available sequenced mammalian genomes provided an opportunity to test this hypothesis. Elephants resemble humans by having large brains and long life spans; tenrecs, in contrast, have small brains and short life spans. Thus, we investigated whether the phylogenomic patterns of adaptive evolution are more similar between elephant and human than between either elephant and tenrec lineages or human and mouse lineages, and whether aerobic energy metabolism genes are especially well represented in the elephant and human patterns. Our analyses encompassed approximately 6,000 genes in each of these lineages with each gene yielding extensive coding sequence matches in interordinal comparisons. Each gene's nonsynonymous and synonymous nucleotide substitution rates and dN/dS ratios were determined. Then, from gene ontology information on genes with the higher dN/dS ratios, we identified the more prevalent sets of genes that belong to specific functional categories and that evolved adaptively. Elephant and human lineages showed much slower nucleotide substitution rates than tenrec and mouse lineages but more adaptively evolved genes. In correlation with absolute brain size and brain oxygen consumption being largest in elephants and next largest in humans, adaptively evolved aerobic energy metabolism genes were most evident in the elephant lineage and next most evident in the human lineage.

  12. Analyzing Vegetation Change in an Elephant-Impacted Landscape Using the Moving Standard Deviation Index

    OpenAIRE

    Timothy J. Fullman; Erin L. Bunting

    2014-01-01

    Northern Botswana is influenced by various socio-ecological drivers of landscape change. The African elephant ( Loxodonta africana ) is one of the leading sources of landscape shifts in this region. Developing the ability to assess elephant impacts on savanna vegetation is important to promote effective management strategies. The Moving Standard Deviation Index (MSDI) applies a standard deviation calculation to remote sensing imagery to assess degradation of vegetation. Used previously for as...

  13. Investigating the possible usage of elephant grass ash to manufacture the eco-friendly binary cements

    OpenAIRE

    Nakanishi, Erika Y.; Frías, Moisés; Sergio F. Santos; Michelle S. Rodrigues

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, agro-industrial residues are focusing attention worldwide as a new source of pozzolans; in Brazil one of the wastes generated from agro-industrial activities comes from elephant grass that is cultivated as biomass for energy cogeneration. The goal of this paper is to analyze the influence of elephant grass, once activated at 700 C for 1 h in electric furnace, on the evolution of the hydration reaction as well as physical and mechanical properties in blended cemen...

  14. The influence of socioeconomic factors on the densities of high-value cross-border species, the African elephant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slotow, Rob; Di Minin, Enrico

    2016-01-01

    Unprecedented poaching levels triggered by demand for ivory in Far East Asia are threatening the persistence of African elephant Loxodonta africana. Southern African countries make an important contribution to elephant conservation and could soon become the last stronghold of elephant conservation in Africa. While the ecological factors affecting elephant distribution and densities have extensively been accounted for, there is a need to understand which socioeconomic factors affect elephant numbers in order to prevent conflict over limited space and resources with humans. We used elephant count data from aerial surveys for seven years in a generalized linear model, which accounted for temporal correlation, to investigate the effect of six socioeconomic and ecological variables on the number of elephant at the country level in the Greater Mapungubwe Transfrontier Conservation Area (GMTFCA). Important factors in predicting elephant numbers were the proportion of total land surface under cultivation, human population density and the number of tourists visiting the country. Specifically, elephant numbers were higher where the proportion of total land surface under cultivation was the lowest; where population density was the lowest and where tourist numbers had increased over the years. Our results confirm that human disturbance is affecting elephant numbers, but highlight that the benefits provided by ecotourism could help enhance elephant conservation. While future studies should include larger areas and more detailed data at the site level, we stress that the development of coordinated legislation and policies to improve land-use planning are needed to reduce the impact of increasing human populations and agriculture on elephant. PMID:27812404

  15. The influence of socioeconomic factors on the densities of high-value cross-border species, the African elephant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah-Anne Jeanetta Selier

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Unprecedented poaching levels triggered by demand for ivory in Far East Asia are threatening the persistence of African elephant Loxodonta africana. Southern African countries make an important contribution to elephant conservation and could soon become the last stronghold of elephant conservation in Africa. While the ecological factors affecting elephant distribution and densities have extensively been accounted for, there is a need to understand which socioeconomic factors affect elephant numbers in order to prevent conflict over limited space and resources with humans. We used elephant count data from aerial surveys for seven years in a generalized linear model, which accounted for temporal correlation, to investigate the effect of six socioeconomic and ecological variables on the number of elephant at the country level in the Greater Mapungubwe Transfrontier Conservation Area (GMTFCA. Important factors in predicting elephant numbers were the proportion of total land surface under cultivation, human population density and the number of tourists visiting the country. Specifically, elephant numbers were higher where the proportion of total land surface under cultivation was the lowest; where population density was the lowest and where tourist numbers had increased over the years. Our results confirm that human disturbance is affecting elephant numbers, but highlight that the benefits provided by ecotourism could help enhance elephant conservation. While future studies should include larger areas and more detailed data at the site level, we stress that the development of coordinated legislation and policies to improve land-use planning are needed to reduce the impact of increasing human populations and agriculture on elephant.

  16. Racism and Asian American Student Leadership

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Jennifer Y.

    2014-01-01

    This article provides a theoretical analysis and ethnographic account of Asian American student leadership in higher education. Existing literature highlights Asian and Asian American leadership styles as cultural differences. I shift the analysis from culture to racism in order to work toward a more socially just conception of Asian American…

  17. Elephants (and extinct relatives) as earth-movers and ecosystem engineers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haynes, Gary

    2012-07-01

    Modern African elephants affect habitats and ecosystems in significant ways. They push over trees to feed on upper branches and often peel large sections of bark to eat. These destructive habits sometimes transform woody vegetation into grasslands. Systems of elephant trails may be used and re-used for centuries, and create incised features that extend for many kilometers on migration routes. Elephants, digging in search of water or mineral sediments, may remove several cubic meters of sediments in each excavation. Wallowing elephants may remove up to a cubic meter of pond sediments each time they visit water sources. Accumulations of elephant dung on frequented land surfaces may be over 2 kg per square meter. Elephant trampling, digging, and dust-bathing may reverse stratigraphy at archeological localities. This paper summarizes these types of effects on biotic, geomorphic, and paleontological features in modern-day landscapes, and also describes several fossil sites that indicate extinct proboscideans had very similar effects, such as major sediment disturbances.

  18. Runx family genes in a cartilaginous fish, the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giselle Sek Suan Nah

    Full Text Available The Runx family genes encode transcription factors that play key roles in hematopoiesis, skeletogenesis and neurogenesis and are often implicated in diseases. We describe here the cloning and characterization of Runx1, Runx2, Runx3 and Runxb genes in the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii, a member of Chondrichthyes, the oldest living group of jawed vertebrates. Through the use of alternative promoters and/or alternative splicing, each of the elephant shark Runx genes expresses multiple isoforms similar to their orthologs in human and other bony vertebrates. The expression profiles of elephant shark Runx genes are similar to those of mammalian Runx genes. The syntenic blocks of genes at the elephant shark Runx gene loci are highly conserved in human, but represented by shorter conserved blocks in zebrafish indicating a higher degree of rearrangements in this teleost fish. Analysis of promoter regions revealed conservation of binding sites for transcription factors, including two tandem binding sites for Runx that are totally conserved in the distal promoter regions of elephant shark Runx1-3. Several conserved noncoding elements (CNEs, which are putative cis-regulatory elements, and miRNA binding sites were identified in the elephant shark and human Runx gene loci. Some of these CNEs and miRNA binding sites are absent in teleost fishes such as zebrafish and fugu. In summary, our analysis reveals that the genomic organization and expression profiles of Runx genes were already complex in the common ancestor of jawed vertebrates.

  19. Social factors influence ovarian acyclicity in captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Elizabeth W; Guagnano, Greg; Olson, Deborah; Keele, Mike; Brown, Janine L

    2009-01-01

    Nearly one-third of reproductive age African elephants in North America that are hormonally monitored fail to exhibit estrous cycle activity, which exacerbates the nonsustainability of the captive population. Three surveys were distributed to facilities housing female African elephants to determine how social and environmental variables contribute to cyclicity problems. Forty-six facilities returned all three surveys providing information on 90% of the SSP population and 106 elephants (64 cycling, 27 noncycling and 15 undetermined). Logistic analyses found that some physiological and social history variables were related to ovarian acyclicity. Females more likely to be acyclic had a larger body mass index and had resided longer at a facility with the same herdmates. Results suggest that controlling the weight of an elephant might be a first step to helping mitigate estrous cycle problems. Data further show that transferring females among facilities has no major impact on ovarian activity. Last, social status appears to impact cyclicity status; at 19 of 21 facilities that housed both cycling and noncycling elephants, the dominant female was acyclic. Further studies on how social and environmental dynamics affect hormone levels in free-living, cycling elephants are needed to determine whether acyclicity is strictly a captivity-related phenomenon.

  20. Spatial Distribution of Elephants versus Human and Ecological Variables in Western Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuel Danquah

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available An elephant survey was conducted in the Bia-Goaso Forest Block in western Ghana during the wet season month of November 2012 to determine the distribution of elephants and assess the human and ecological variables that affect them. One hundred and thirty 1-kilometre transects were systematically distributed in three strata (high, medium, and low density based on elephant dung pile density recorded in an initial reconnaissance. Elephant activity was concentrated in southern and mid-Bia Conservation Area, the southern tip of Bia North Forest Reserve, and eastern Mpameso Forest Reserve towards the adjoining Bia Shelter belt, indicating a clumped distribution. Secondary forest, water availability, poaching activity, and proximity to roads and settlements explained a high proportion of variance in elephant distribution. Given that the Bia-Goaso Forest Block forms an important biogeographic corridor between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, more effort should be directed at mitigating the problems such as poaching activity, vehicular traffic, and impacts of settlements that hinder seasonal movements of forest elephants between western Ghana and eastern Cote d’Ivoire.

  1. The Analysis of Characters'Speech Acts in Hills Like White Elephants%The Analysis of Characters' Speech Acts in Hills Like White Elephants

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    任佳宏

    2016-01-01

    This article will analyze Hemingway's short novel Hills Like White Elephants from speech act theory perspective. Thus we will have a better understanding about the characters' relationship in the novel and the author's purposes in writing this novel. And the author's writing features will be reproduced, as well as the topic of the novel, the way of the language expressions and the relation of the significance. The analysis of the speech acts of the characters in Hills Like White Elephants can not only help people understand this novel but also provide materials to study this classical novel in new field. It is also hoped that the analysis of Hills Like White Elephants will arouse an important way to the appreciation of other classical novels.

  2. 800,000 year old mammoth DNA, modern elephant DNA or PCR artefact?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Binladen, Jonas; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Willerslev, Eske

    2007-01-01

    in samples, which are recovered from warm environments and are relatively old (e.g. more than 100,000 years), these findings come as a great surprise. Here, we show that problems exist with the methodological approaches used in the study. First, the nested PCR technique as reported is nonsensical......--one of the second round 'nested' primers falls outside the amplicon of the first round PCR. More worryingly, the binding region of one of the first round primers (Elcytb320R) falls within the short 43 base pair reported mammoth sequence, specifically covering two of the three reportedly diagnostic Elephas...

  3. The evolution and phylogeography of the African elephant inferred from mitochondrial DNA sequence and nuclear microsatellite markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eggert, Lori S; Rasner, Caylor A; Woodruff, David S

    2002-10-07

    Recent genetic results support the recognition of two African elephant species: Loxodonta africana, the savannah elephant, and Loxodonta cyclotis, the forest elephant. The study, however, did not include the populations of West Africa, where the taxonomic affinities of elephants have been much debated. We examined mitochondrial cytochrome b control region sequences and four microsatellite loci to investigate the genetic differences between the forest and savannah elephants of West and Central Africa. We then combined our data with published control region sequences from across Africa to examine patterns at the continental level. Our analysis reveals several deeply divergent lineages that do not correspond with the currently recognized taxonomy: (i) the forest elephants of Central Africa; the forest and savannah elephants of West Africa; and (iii) the savannah elephants of eastern, southern and Central Africa. We propose that the complex phylogeographic patterns we detect in African elephants result from repeated continental-scale climatic changes over their five-to-six million year evolutionary history. Until there is consensus on the taxonomy, we suggest that the genetic and ecological distinctness of these lineages should be an important factor in conservation management planning.

  4. Elephant impact on Sclerocarya Caffra trees in Acacia Nigrescens tropical plains Thornveld of the Kruger National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B.J Coetzee

    1979-01-01

    Full Text Available A survey of elephant impact at various distances from roads was conducted in June 1978 for Sclerocarya caffra (marula tree populations in Acacia nigrescens Tropical Plains Thornveld in the Kruger National Park, Republic of South Africa. Data from scar recovery indicate that widespread scarring of S. caffra trees by elephant commenced in 1973, coinciding with a wet cli- matic phase. Elephant impact, old and fresh and irrespective of kind, decreased with distance from roads. Substantially higher impact was also recorded along S. caffra population boundaries. The most recent impact on some populations was higher than expected from the established relationship between elephant impact and tree density.

  5. Job satisfaction of Asian Americans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weaver, C N; Hinson, S

    2000-04-01

    Since Asian Americans have demographic and labor force characteristics more similar to Euro-Americans than African Americans, one might predict that their job satisfaction would be more like the former than the latter. And, because Asian Americans originating from different countries are heterogeneous in language, culture, and recency of immigration, one might predict that they may report obtaining different amounts of satisfaction from their jobs. However, data from 21 nationally representative opinion surveys from 1972 through 1996 suggest the opposite. Asian Americans (n = 199) reported job satisfaction more like African Americans (n = 1,231) than Euro-Americans (n = 10,709), and Asian Americans from China (n = 53), Japan (n = 44), India (n = 55), and the Philippines (n = 47) reported similar job satisfaction. These differences persisted when age, education, occupation, and personal income were held constant.

  6. Osteoporosis and Asian American Women

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... not supported by your browser. Home Osteoporosis Women Osteoporosis and Asian American Women Publication available in: PDF ( ... Are Available? Resources For Your Information What Is Osteoporosis? Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones ...

  7. Combining ability of elephant grass based on nutritional characters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Quitete Ribeiro da Silva

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the work was to evaluate the effects of general combining ability (CGC of the parents and specific combining ability (CEC in the elephant grass hybrids by diallel analysis adapted to partial diallel crosses based on nutritional characters. Sixteen hybrids and eight parents in a randomized block design with three replications were evaluated. The study considered percentage of dry matter (%DM, ash (%ASH, crude protein (%CP and neutral detergent fiber (NDF. There were significant differences among genotypes for the traits evaluated, with a predominance of dominance gene effect. Based on CGC, the best parents were Taiwan A-144, Vruckwona Africana e Taiwan A-146. The best intersections based on CEC were Taiwan A-144 x Taiwan A-146, Vruckwona Africana x Taiwan A-146, Vruckwona Africana x Mercker S.E.A., Vruckwona Africana x Napier nº2 e Pusa Napier nº2 x Mercker Santa Rita.

  8. A Pragmatic Analysis of Hemingway's "Hills Like White Elephant"

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李贺

    2008-01-01

    Hemingway's short story Hills Like White Elephant serves as a best illustration of the TiP of an Iceberg Theory.His deliberate omission of information concerning the background of the protagonists and purposeful avoidance of maklog authorial comments makes it possble to understand the text in totally differeot ways and leaves readers to struggle for the undersatnding of the potential meaning of the text all by themselves.By applying the Cooperative Principie and the Pragmatic Theory of Politeness to the conversation in the text,the essay here tries to recover the information hidden bonesth the surface of the text and to recoilstruct the text as a whole.The cooclusion is that proper application of relevant pragmatic theory can help readers have a relatively rationsl and reasonable understanding of the text.

  9. Reptiles and Amphibians of the Addo Elephant National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W.R. Branch

    1987-10-01

    Full Text Available The results of a survey of the reptiles and amphibians of the Addo Elephant National Park (AENP are presented. A total of 49 species, comprising 16 amphibians, 14 lizards, 15 snakes and 4 chelonians, occur in the AENP. Observations on the biology and distribution of these species in the AENP are given, and the relative composition and diversity is compared with the herpetofauna of the surrounding eastern Cape and the more distant Kruger National Park. The zoogeographic affinities of the AENP herpetofauna are similar to those of the surrounding eastern Cape (i.e. Cape Temperate 46,9, Temperate- Transitional 16,3, Eastern Tropical Transitional 10,2, Western Tropical Transitional 8,2, Tropical East Coast Littoral 2,0 and Temperate Wideranging 16,3. Resource partitioning among the AENP herpetofauna is discussed and the conservation status of the species summarised. A list of species that may still be collected within the AENP is included.

  10. Barriers to qualitative dementia research: the elephant in the room.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmody, John; Traynor, Victoria; Marchetti, Elena

    2015-07-01

    As our population is aging, the global prevalence of dementia is rising. Recent extensive reviews of the dementia literature highlight a clear need for additional qualitative research to address the experiences of people with dementia and their carers. To date, the vast majority of published dementia research is quantitative in nature and, perhaps not surprisingly, attracts the bulk of government funding. In contrast, qualitative dementia research is poorly resourced and less frequently published. Although a myriad of factors are responsible for this dichotomy, we propose that inadequate funding represents the "elephant in the room" of dementia research. In this article, we describe and emphasize the need for qualitative dementia research, highlight existing barriers, and outline potential solutions. Examples of barriers are provided and theoretical underpinnings are proposed.

  11. Small mammals of the Addo Elephant National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Swanepoel

    1975-07-01

    Full Text Available A survey of the small mammals of the Addo Elephant National Park resulted in a checklist, as well as information on relative numbers, distribution within the Park, reproductive activity, sex ratios, and body measurements. Forty mammals species occur in the Park, while three re-introduced species probably do not occur any longer. Of the 40 species 28 are considered small mammals comprising 13 rodent, eight carnivore, two shrew, two bat, one primate and one lagomorph species, as well as the aardvark: Crociduraflavescens, C. cyanea infumata, Rousettus aegyptiacus, Eptesicus capensis, Cercopithecus pygerythrus, Canis mesomelas, Ictonyx striatus, Poecilogale albinucha, Genetta sp., Herpestes pulverulentus, Suricata suricatta, Proteles cristatus, Felis caracal, Orycteropus afer, Lepus saxatilis, Cryptomys hottentotus, Hystrix africae-australis, Pedetes capensis, Graphiurus murinus, Aethomys namaquensis, Praomys natalensis, Rhabdomys pumilio, Mus minutoides, Rattus rattus, Saccostomys campestris, Desmodillus auricularis, Otomys irroratus and 0. unisulcatus.

  12. Bilateral ovarian cystadenoma in a geriatric African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoby, Stefan; Aloisio, Fabio; Schumacher, Vanessa L

    2014-06-01

    A 59-yr-old, captive female African elephant (Loxodonta africana) died of a cardiovascular collapse. Necropsy revealed bilateral replacement of the ovarian tissue by multiple cystic formations of up to 10 cm in diameter. The cysts were thin walled and filled with clear watery fluid. Smaller solid masses with an irregular surface projected from the wall of a few of the cysts. Histologically, the cystic structures were characterized by a single layer of well-differentiated cuboidal epithelial cells resting on a basement membrane. Occasionally the cysts contained nodular proliferations of single-layered, well-differentiated cuboidal epithelial cells forming anastomosing tubules and occasional papillary projections. The ovarian neoplasia was diagnosed as a bilateral multilocular serous ovarian cystadenoma. The nulliparous status and the advanced age may have contributed to the ovarian pathology.

  13. Multiphasic strain differentiation of atypical mycobacteria from elephant trunk wash

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kok-Gan Chan

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Background. Two non-tuberculous mycobacterial strains, UM_3 and UM_11, were isolated from the trunk wash of captive elephants in Malaysia. As they appeared to be identical phenotypes, they were investigated further by conventional and whole genome sequence-based methods of strain differentiation.Methods. Multiphasic investigations on the isolates included species identification with hsp65 PCR-sequencing, conventional biochemical tests, rapid biochemical profiling using API strips and the Biolog Phenotype Microarray analysis, protein profiling with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, repetitive sequence-based PCR typing and whole genome sequencing followed by phylogenomic analyses.Results. The isolates were shown to be possibly novel slow-growing schotochromogens with highly similar biological and genotypic characteristics. Both strains have a genome size of 5.2 Mbp, G+C content of 68.8%, one rRNA operon and 52 tRNAs each. They qualified for classification into the same species with their average nucleotide identity of 99.98% and tetranucleotide correlation coefficient of 0.99999. At the subspecies level, both strains showed 98.8% band similarity in the Diversilab automated repetitive sequence-based PCR typing system, 96.2% similarity in protein profiles obtained by liquid chromatography mass spectrometry, and a genomic distance that is close to zero in the phylogenomic tree constructed with conserved orthologs. Detailed epidemiological tracking revealed that the elephants shared a common habitat eight years apart, thus, strengthening the possibility of a clonal relationship between the two strains.

  14. Forest or the trees: At what scale do elephants make foraging decisions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shrader, Adrian M.; Bell, Caroline; Bertolli, Liandra; Ward, David

    2012-07-01

    For herbivores, food is distributed spatially in a hierarchical manner ranging from plant parts to regions. Ultimately, utilisation of food is dependent on the scale at which herbivores make foraging decisions. A key factor that influences these decisions is body size, because selection inversely relates to body size. As a result, large animals can be less selective than small herbivores. Savanna elephants (Loxodonta africana) are the largest terrestrial herbivore. Thus, they represent a potential extreme with respect to unselective feeding. However, several studies have indicated that elephants prefer specific habitats and certain woody plant species. Thus, it is unclear at which scale elephants focus their foraging decisions. To determine this, we recorded the seasonal selection of habitats and woody plant species by elephants in the Ithala Game Reserve, South Africa. We expected that during the wet season, when both food quality and availability were high, that elephants would select primarily for habitats. This, however, does not mean that they would utilise plant species within these habitats in proportion to availability, but rather would show a stronger selection for habitats compared to plants. In contrast, during the dry season when food quality and availability declined, we expected that elephants would shift and select for the remaining high quality woody species across all habitats. Consistent with our predictions, elephants selected for the larger spatial scale (i.e. habitats) during the wet season. However, elephants did not increase their selection of woody species during the dry season, but rather increased their selection of habitats relative to woody plant selection. Unlike a number of earlier studies, we found that that neither palatability (i.e. crude protein, digestibility, and energy) alone nor tannin concentrations had a significant effect for determining the elephants' selection of woody species. However, the palatability:tannin ratio was

  15. Bounds for Asian basket options

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deelstra, Griselda; Diallo, Ibrahima; Vanmaele, Michèle

    2008-09-01

    In this paper we propose pricing bounds for European-style discrete arithmetic Asian basket options in a Black and Scholes framework. We start from methods used for basket options and Asian options. First, we use the general approach for deriving upper and lower bounds for stop-loss premia of sums of non-independent random variables as in Kaas et al. [Upper and lower bounds for sums of random variables, Insurance Math. Econom. 27 (2000) 151-168] or Dhaene et al. [The concept of comonotonicity in actuarial science and finance: theory, Insurance Math. Econom. 31(1) (2002) 3-33]. We generalize the methods in Deelstra et al. [Pricing of arithmetic basket options by conditioning, Insurance Math. Econom. 34 (2004) 55-57] and Vanmaele et al. [Bounds for the price of discrete sampled arithmetic Asian options, J. Comput. Appl. Math. 185(1) (2006) 51-90]. Afterwards we show how to derive an analytical closed-form expression for a lower bound in the non-comonotonic case. Finally, we derive upper bounds for Asian basket options by applying techniques as in Thompson [Fast narrow bounds on the value of Asian options, Working Paper, University of Cambridge, 1999] and Lord [Partially exact and bounded approximations for arithmetic Asian options, J. Comput. Finance 10 (2) (2006) 1-52]. Numerical results are included and on the basis of our numerical tests, we explain which method we recommend depending on moneyness and time-to-maturity.

  16. Tool, weapon, or white elephant? A realist analysis of the five phases of a twenty-year programme of occupational health information system implementation in the health sector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spiegel Jerry M

    2012-08-01

    outcomes of interest to all parties. Issues specific to IS development, including technological support and software licensing models, can also affect outcome and sustainability – especially in the North–south context. Careful attention must be given to power relations between the various stakeholders at macro, meso and micro levels when implementing IS. North–South-South collaborations should be encouraged. Governance as well as technological issues are crucial determinants of IS application, and ultimately whether the system is seen as a tool, weapon, or white elephant by the various involved parties. "You may call me a fool, But was there a rule The weapon should be turned into a tool? And what do we see? The first tool I step on Turned into a weapon. - Robert Frost" "White (albino elephants were regarded as holy in ancient times in Thailand and other Asian countries. Keeping a white elephant was a very expensive undertaking, since the owner had to provide the elephant with special food and provide access for people who wanted to worship it. If a Thai King became dissatisfied with a subordinate, he would give him a white elephant. The gift would, in most cases, ruin the recipient. - The Phrase Finder"

  17. Rape: an Asian perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadesan, K

    2001-06-01

    Rape is one of the fastest growing violent crimes in many parts of the world. Rape laws have been amended in most countries in an attempt to cope with the proliferation of this crime. Even though the legal definition of rape and the procedural laws have been amended, rape remains a serious problem in both the developed and developing nations. In some countries the offence of rape carries severe punishment sometimes even the death sentence. In many jurisdictions the term 'sexual penetration' is being used instead of 'sexual intercourse'. Sexual penetration includes sexual intercourse, anal intercourse, cunnilingus, fellatio or any other intrusions involving any part of a human body or of any object into the genital or anal opening of a person's body. In many countries rape and other sexual offences have been replaced with a series of gender neutral and graded offences with appropriate punishments. Medical examination can provide independent, scientific, corroborative evidence that may be of value to the court in arriving at a judgement. Doctors should have a clear understanding of different rape laws in order to apprectiate the various issues involved. Special knowledge, skill and experience are essential to conduct a good-quality medical examination. There is a dearth of trained forensic physicians in many Asian countries. However, managing a rape victim (survivor) goes for beyond proving the case in a court of law. There should be an adequate rehabilitation programme available to the victims to help them cope.

  18. Smallholder Farms as Stepping Stone Corridors for Crop-Raiding Elephant in Northern Tanzania: Integration of Bayesian Expert System and Network Simulator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pittiglio, C.; Skidmore, A.K.; Gils, van H.A.M.; McCall, M.K.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2014-01-01

    Crop-raiding elephants affect local livelihoods, undermining conservation efforts. Yet, crop-raiding patterns are poorly understood, making prediction and protection difficult. We hypothesized that raiding elephants use corridors between daytime refuges and farmland. Elephant counts, crop-raiding re

  19. African elephant alarm calls distinguish between threats from humans and bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soltis, Joseph; King, Lucy E; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Vollrath, Fritz; Savage, Anne

    2014-01-01

    The Samburu pastoralists of Northern Kenya co-exist with African elephants, Loxodonta africana, and compete over resources such as watering holes. Audio playback experiments demonstrate that African elephants produce alarm calls in response to the voices of Samburu tribesmen. When exposed to adult male Samburu voices, listening elephants exhibited vigilance behavior, flight behavior, and produced vocalizations (rumbles, roars and trumpets). Rumble vocalizations were most common and were characterized by increased and more variable fundamental frequencies, and an upward shift in the first [F1] and second [F2] formant locations, compared to control rumbles. When exposed to a sequence of these recorded rumbles, roars and trumpets, listening elephants also exhibited vigilance and flight behavior. The same behavior was observed, in lesser degrees, both when the roars and trumpets were removed, and when the second formants were artificially lowered to levels typical of control rumbles. The "Samburu alarm rumble" is acoustically distinct from the previously described "bee alarm rumble." The bee alarm rumbles exhibited increased F2, while Samburu alarm rumbles exhibited increased F1 and F2, compared to controls. Moreover, the behavioral reactions to the two threats were different. Elephants exhibited vigilance and flight behavior in response to Samburu and bee stimuli and to both alarm calls, but headshaking behavior only occurred in response to bee sounds and bee alarm calls. In general, increasingly threatening stimuli elicited alarm calls with increases in F0 and in formant locations, and increasing numbers of these acoustic cues in vocal stimuli elicited increased vigilance and flight behavior in listening elephants. These results show that African elephant alarm calls differentiate between two types of threat and reflect the level of urgency of threats.

  20. African elephant alarm calls distinguish between threats from humans and bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Soltis

    Full Text Available The Samburu pastoralists of Northern Kenya co-exist with African elephants, Loxodonta africana, and compete over resources such as watering holes. Audio playback experiments demonstrate that African elephants produce alarm calls in response to the voices of Samburu tribesmen. When exposed to adult male Samburu voices, listening elephants exhibited vigilance behavior, flight behavior, and produced vocalizations (rumbles, roars and trumpets. Rumble vocalizations were most common and were characterized by increased and more variable fundamental frequencies, and an upward shift in the first [F1] and second [F2] formant locations, compared to control rumbles. When exposed to a sequence of these recorded rumbles, roars and trumpets, listening elephants also exhibited vigilance and flight behavior. The same behavior was observed, in lesser degrees, both when the roars and trumpets were removed, and when the second formants were artificially lowered to levels typical of control rumbles. The "Samburu alarm rumble" is acoustically distinct from the previously described "bee alarm rumble." The bee alarm rumbles exhibited increased F2, while Samburu alarm rumbles exhibited increased F1 and F2, compared to controls. Moreover, the behavioral reactions to the two threats were different. Elephants exhibited vigilance and flight behavior in response to Samburu and bee stimuli and to both alarm calls, but headshaking behavior only occurred in response to bee sounds and bee alarm calls. In general, increasingly threatening stimuli elicited alarm calls with increases in F0 and in formant locations, and increasing numbers of these acoustic cues in vocal stimuli elicited increased vigilance and flight behavior in listening elephants. These results show that African elephant alarm calls differentiate between two types of threat and reflect the level of urgency of threats.

  1. Roadless wilderness area determines forest elephant movements in the Congo Basin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen Blake

    Full Text Available A dramatic expansion of road building is underway in the Congo Basin fuelled by private enterprise, international aid, and government aspirations. Among the great wilderness areas on earth, the Congo Basin is outstanding for its high biodiversity, particularly mobile megafauna including forest elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis. The abundance of many mammal species in the Basin increases with distance from roads due to hunting pressure, but the impacts of road proliferation on the movements of individuals are unknown. We investigated the ranging behaviour of forest elephants in relation to roads and roadless wilderness by fitting GPS telemetry collars onto a sample of 28 forest elephants living in six priority conservation areas. We show that the size of roadless wilderness is a strong determinant of home range size in this species. Though our study sites included the largest wilderness areas in central African forests, none of 4 home range metrics we calculated, including core area, tended toward an asymptote with increasing wilderness size, suggesting that uninhibited ranging in forest elephants no longer exists. Furthermore we show that roads outside protected areas which are not protected from hunting are a formidable barrier to movement while roads inside protected areas are not. Only 1 elephant from our sample crossed an unprotected road. During crossings her mean speed increased 14-fold compared to normal movements. Forest elephants are increasingly confined and constrained by roads across the Congo Basin which is reducing effective habitat availability and isolating populations, significantly threatening long term conservation efforts. If the current road development trajectory continues, forest wildernesses and the forest elephants they contain will collapse.

  2. Impacts of East Asian aerosols on the Asian monsoon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartlett, Rachel; Bollasina, Massimo; Booth, Ben; Dunstone, Nick; Marenco, Franco

    2016-04-01

    Over recent decades, aerosol emissions from Asia have increased rapidly. Aerosols are able to alter radiative forcing and regional hydroclimate through direct and indirect effects. Large emissions within the geographical region of the Asian monsoon have been found to impact upon this vital system and have been linked to observed drying trends. The interconnected nature of smaller regional monsoon components (e.g. the Indian monsoon and East Asian monsoon) presents the possibility that aerosol sources could have far-reaching impacts. Future aerosol emissions are uncertain and may continue to dominate regional impacts on the Asian monsoon. Standard IPCC future emissions scenarios do not take a broad sample of possible aerosol pathways. We investigate the sensitivity of the Asian monsoon to East Asian aerosol emissions. Experiments carried out with HadGEM2-ES use three time-evolving future anthropogenic aerosol emissions scenarios with similar time-evolving greenhouse gases. We find a wetter summer over southern China and the Indochina Peninsula associated with increased sulfate aerosol over China. The southern-flood-northern-drought pattern seen in observations is reflected in these results. India is found to be drier in the summer overall, although wetter in June. These precipitation changes are linked to the increase in sulfate through the alteration of large scale dynamics. Sub-seasonal changes are also seen, with an earlier withdrawal of the monsoon over East Asia.

  3. South Asian High and Asian-Pacific-American Climate Teleconnection

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    Growing evidence indicates that the Asian monsoon plays an important role in affecting the weather and climate outside of Asia. However, this active role of the monsoon has not been demonstrated as thoroughly as has the variability of the monsoon caused by various impacting factors such as sea surface temperature and land surface. This study investigates the relationship between the Asian monsoon and the climate anomalies in the Asian-Pacific-American (APA) sector. A hypothesis is tested that the variability of the upper-tropospheric South Asian high (SAH), which is closely associated with the overall heating of the large-scale Asian monsoon, is linked to changes in the subtropical western Pacific high (SWPH), the midPacific trough, and the Mexican high. The changes in these circulation systems cause variability in surface temperature and precipitation in the APA region. A stronger SAH is accompanied by a stronger and more extensive SWPH. The enlargement of the SWPH weakens the mid-Pacific trough. As a result, the southern portion of the Mexican high becomes stronger. These changes are associated with changes in atmospheric teleconnections, precipitation, and surface temperature throughout the APA region. When the SAH is stronger, precipitation increases in southern Asia, decreases over the Pacific Ocean, and increases over the Central America. Precipitation also increases over Australia and central Africa and decreases in the Mediterranean region. While the signals in surface temperature are weak over the tropical land portion,they are apparent in the mid latitudes and over the eastern Pacific Ocean.

  4. 78 FR 77194 - Golden Elephant Glass Technology, Inc., and Pacific Alliance Corp.; Order of Suspension of Trading

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-20

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION Golden Elephant Glass Technology, Inc., and Pacific Alliance Corp.; Order of Suspension of Trading... accurate information concerning the securities of Golden Elephant Glass Technology, Inc. because it has...

  5. A proposal for a transnational forest network area for elephants in Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Parren, M.P.E.; Leede, de B.M.; Bongers, F.

    2002-01-01

    Forest elephants Loxodonta africana cyclotis in Ghana and eastern Côte d'Ivoire live in small isolated populations and number fewer than 1,000 individuals in total. To ensure the long-term survival of these elephants the present forest reserves need to be linked into a network by forest corridors. T

  6. Survey of Forest Elephants Loxodonta cyclotis (Matschie, 1900 (Mammalia: Proboscidea: Elephantidae in the Bia Conservation Area, Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuel Danquah

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Information on elephant ranges and numbers is vital for effective conservation and management, especially in western Africa where elephant populations are small and scattered.  The Bia Conservation Area (BCA in southwestern Ghana is a priority site for the conservation of Forest Elephants in western Africa.  A dung count was conducted using a systematic segmented track line design to determine the density and distribution of the BCA elephant population.  The mean density of dung-piles was 452.15 per sq.km. and mean dung survival time was estimated to be 54.64 days (SD 2 days, leading to an estimate of 146 elephants (95% confidence interval 98-172 with a density of 0.48/km2 for the BCA. This estimate probably makes the Bia forest elephant population the largest in Ghana.  Records of BCA elephant activities were also made.  This study augments the Regional African Elephant Database and should facilitate strategic planning and management programmes.

  7. Conservation outside protected areas and the effect of human-dominated landscapes on stress hormones in Savannah elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahlering, M A; Maldonado, J E; Eggert, L S; Fleischer, R C; Western, D; Brown, J L

    2013-06-01

    Biodiversity conservation strategies are increasingly focused on regions outside national protected areas, where animals face numerous anthropogenic threats and must coexist with human settlements, livestock, and agriculture. The effects of these potential threats are not always clear, but they could have profound implications for population viability. We used savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana) as a case study to assess the physiological stress associated with living in a human-livestock-dominated landscape. We collected samples over two 3-month periods in 2007 and 2008. We used fecal DNA to identify 96 individual elephants in a community conservation area (CCA) and measured fecal glucocorticoid metabolite (FGM) concentrations as a proxy for stress. The CCA is community Maasai land managed for livestock and wildlife. We compared the FGM concentrations from the CCA to FGM concentrations of 40 elephants in Amboseli National Park and 32 elephants in the Maasai Mara National Reserve, where human settlements and intense livestock grazing were absent. In the CCA, we found no significant individual differences in FGM concentrations among the elephants in 2007 (p = 0.312) or 2008 (p = 0.412) and no difference between years (p = 0.616). The elephants in the CCA had similar FGM concentrations to the Maasai Mara population, but Amboseli elephants had significantly lower FGM concentrations than those in either Maasai Mara or the CCA (Tukey pairwise test, p elephants living on CCA communal land, which is encouraging for conservation strategies promoting the protection of animals living outside protected areas.

  8. Zoo visitor perceptions, attitudes, and conservation intent after viewing African elephants at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacker, Charlotte E; Miller, Lance J

    2016-07-01

    Elephants in the wild face several conservation issues. With the rebranding of zoos as conservation and education pioneers, they have the ability to both educate and inspire guests to action. The purpose of this research was to analyze visitor perceptions and attitudes toward elephant conservation and outcomes post-exhibit visit. A one-page survey was randomly administered to assess perceptions of elephant behavior, attitudes about elephant conservation, and intended conservation-related outcomes from September 2013 to January 2014. Principle component analysis identified three major components: concern for elephants in zoos, importance of elephants in the wild, and modification of nature. Visitors who scored highly on conservation intent were those with positive attitudes towards elephants in the wild and negative attitudes regarding the modification of nature. The greatest changes in conservation intent were a result of a self-reported up-close encounter and the ability to witness active behaviors. Providing guests with the opportunity to witness or experience such occurrences may aid in a more successful delivery of the zoo's conservation message. Further research into guest emotions and affective states in relation to viewing elephants in a zoological institution would provide greater insight into improving the guest experience and helping zoos meet their conservation mission. Zoo Biol. 35:355-361, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Two cases of atypical mycobacteriosis caused by Mycobacterium szulgai associated with mortality in captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacasse, Claude; Terio, Karen; Kinsel, Michael J; Farina, Lisa L; Travis, Dominic A; Greenwald, Rena; Lyashchenko, Konstantin P; Miller, Michele; Gamble, Kathryn C

    2007-03-01

    Mycobacterium szulgai was associated with mortality in two captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana) housed at Lincoln Park Zoo. The first elephant presented with severe, acute lameness of the left rear limb. Despite extensive treatments, the animal collapsed and died 13 mo after initial presentation. Necropsy revealed osteomyelitis with loss of the femoral head and acetabulum and pulmonary granulomas with intralesional M. szulgai. The second elephant collapsed during transport to another institution with no premonitory clinical signs. This animal was euthanized because of prolonged recumbency. Granulomatous pneumonia with intralesional M. szulgai was found at necropsy. Two novel immunoassays performed on banked serum samples detected antibody responses to mycobacterial antigens in both infected elephants. It was not possible to determine when the infection was established or how the elephants were infected. When reviewing the epidemiology of this organism in humans, however, transmission between elephants seemed unlikely because human-to-human transmission of this organism has never been reported and a third elephant in the herd was not affected. In addition to Mycobacterium bovis and Mycobacterium tuberculosis, atypical mycobacterial organisms need to be considered potentially pathogenic in elephants.

  10. Synergistic effects of fire and elephants on arboreal animals in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Robert M; Kimuyu, Duncan M; Sensenig, Ryan L; Palmer, Todd M; Riginos, Corinna; Veblen, Kari E; Young, Truman P

    2015-11-01

    Disturbance is a crucial determinant of animal abundance, distribution and community structure in many ecosystems, but the ways in which multiple disturbance types interact remain poorly understood. The effects of multiple-disturbance interactions can be additive, subadditive or super-additive (synergistic). Synergistic effects in particular can accelerate ecological change; thus, characterizing such synergies, the conditions under which they arise, and how long they persist has been identified as a major goal of ecology. We factorially manipulated two principal sources of disturbance in African savannas, fire and elephants, and measured their independent and interactive effects on the numerically dominant vertebrate (the arboreal gekkonid lizard Lygodactylus keniensis) and invertebrate (a guild of symbiotic Acacia ants) animal species in a semi-arid Kenyan savanna. Elephant exclusion alone (minus fire) had negligible effects on gecko density. Fire alone (minus elephants) had negligible effects on gecko density after 4 months, but increased gecko density twofold after 16 months, likely because the decay of fire-damaged woody biomass created refuges and nest sites for geckos. In the presence of elephants, fire increased gecko density nearly threefold within 4 months of the experimental burn; this occurred because fire increased the incidence of elephant damage to trees, which in turn improved microhabitat quality for geckos. However, this synergistic positive effect of fire and elephants attenuated over the ensuing year, such that only the main effect of fire was evident after 16 months. Fire also altered the structure of symbiotic plant-ant assemblages occupying the dominant tree species (Acacia drepanolobium); this influenced gecko habitat selection but did not explain the synergistic effect of fire and elephants. However, fire-driven shifts in plant-ant occupancy may have indirectly mediated this effect by increasing trees' susceptibility to elephant damage. Our

  11. Attitudes Towards Forest Elephant Conservation Around a Protected Area in Northern Congo

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    Félicien Nsonsi

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available An assessment of local attitudes towards conservation can guide wildlife managers in the effective application of measurements to improve these perceptions. Here we conducted a quantitative questionnaire survey around a protected area in northern Congo surveying 314 households living in four villages around the Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park. We investigated the impact of the benefits of a conservation project (led by an international non-governmental organisation, the experience with human-elephant conflict and the respondents' socio-economic profile on local people's attitudes towards forest elephant conservation. Using multivariate analysis, we found overall positive attitudes towards elephant conservation with more positive answers in the village where a conservation project is based. Furthermore, people employed in the conservation project stated more positive attitudes compared to logging company employees famers, natural resource users and people conducting other jobs. Experience of human elephant conflict negatively impacted people's perceptions. Socio-economic variables, such as ethnic group, education level or salary category had relatively little impact on people's responses. Qualitative statements largely supported the questionnaire results. We discuss our results in the light of the limits of attitude surveys and suggest further investigations to identify the activities needed to foster positive attitudes for elephant conservation in all villages around the Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park in partnership with the logging company.

  12. Forage mass and stocking rate of elephant grass pastures managed under agroecological and conventional systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clair Jorge Olivo

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The objective was to evaluate elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schum. pastures, under the agroecological and conventional systems, as forage mass and stocking rate. In the agroecological system, the elephant grass was established in rows spaced by 3.0 m from each other. During the cool season ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum Lam. was established between these rows, which allowed the development of spontaneous growth species during the warm season. In the conventional system the elephant grass was established singularly in rows spaced 1.4 m from each other. Organic and chemical fertilizers were applied at 150 kg of N/ha/year with in the pastures under agroecological and conventional systems, respectively. Lactating Holstein cows which received 5.0 kg/day supplementary concentrate feed were used for evaluation. The experimental design was completely randomized, with two treatments (agroecological and conventional systems two replications (paddocks and independent evaluations (grazing cycles. The pastures were used during the whole year for the agroecological system and for 195 days in the conventional year. The average values of forage mass were 3.5 and 4.2 t/ha and the stocking rates were 2.08 and 3.23 AU/ha for the respective systems. The results suggest that the use of the elephant grass under the agroecological system allows for best distribution of forage and stocking rate to be more uniform throughout the year than the use of elephant grass in conventional system.

  13. Occurrence and seasonality of internal parasite infection in elephants, Loxodonta africana, in the Okavango Delta, Botswana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lydia Baines

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available It is known from studies in a wide range of wild and domestic animals, including elephants, that parasites can affect growth, reproduction and health. A total of 458 faecal samples from wild elephants were analysed using a combination of flotation and sedimentation methods. Coccidian oocysts (prevalence 51%, and nematode (77% and trematode (24% eggs were found. Species were not identified, though trematode egg morphology was consistent with that of the intestinal fluke Protofasciola robusta. The following factors were found to have a significant effect on parasite infection: month, year, sex, age, and group size and composition. There was some evidence of peak transmission of coccidia and nematodes during the rainy season, confirmed for coccidia in a parallel study of seven sympatric domesticated elephants over a three month period. Nematode eggs were more common in larger groups and nematode egg counts were significantly higher in elephants living in maternal groups (mean 1116 eggs per gram, standard deviation, sd 685 than in all-male groups (529, sd 468. Fluke egg prevalence increased with increasing elephant age. Preservation of samples in formalin progressively decreased the probability of detecting all types of parasite over a storage time of 1–15 months. Possible reasons for associations between other factors and infection levels are discussed.

  14. Development of the germinal ridge and ovary in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stansfield, F J; Nöthling, J O; Soley, J T; Allen, W R

    2012-11-01

    The follicular reserve and its ontogeny in the elephant are of interest because elephants have the longest reproductive life of all land-based mammals. They also have the longest recorded pregnancy, which allows a protracted view of the series of significant events involved in the development of the embryonic and fetal gonads. The large elephant population of Zimbabwe provided the opportunity to collect conceptuses from elephants culled for management reasons and hunted professionally. Five embryos aged 76-96 days and the ovaries of four fetuses aged 4.8-11.2 months were fixed in 4% buffered formalin and studied by conventional histological sectioning and a stereological protocol to calculate the follicle reserve of each fetus. These observations enabled the conclusion that the migration of primordial germ cells into the indifferent gonad terminates at around 76 days of gestation while entry of oogonia into meiosis along with first follicle formation starts at around 5 months. Peak numbers of follicles are present by mid-gestation towards the end of the 6-month mitotic-meiotic transition period. It appears that the cortex of the elephant fetal ovary at mid-gestation (11 months) has already reached a developmental stage exhibited by the ovaries of many other mammals at full term.

  15. Movements and corridors of African elephants in relation to protected areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas-Hamilton, I.; Krink, T.; Vollrath, F.

    2005-04-01

    Understanding how mammals satisfy their need for space in fragmenting ecosystems is crucial for ecosystem conservation. Using state-of-the-art global positioning system (GPS) technology we tracked 11 focal African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in Kenya at 3-hourly fix intervals and collected between 34 and 406 days per individual. Our recordings gave a high spatio-temporal resolution compared to previous studies and allowed novel insights into range use. The actual ranges of the tracked elephants are smaller than usually represented. Moreover, the ranges in our sample were complex and not confined to officially designated protected areas, except where fenced. All the unfenced elephants in our sample had distinct `home sectors' linked by `travel' corridors. Within each home sector the elephants concentrated in favourite `core zones'. Such core zones tended to lie in protected areas whereas corridors typically crossed unprotected range. Elephants moved significantly faster along corridors than elsewhere in their range, which suggests awareness of danger outside the protected area. We conclude that understanding the complex use of an animal's range is crucial for conservation planning aiming to balance animal interests with those of human beings that co-habit in their range.

  16. Occurrence and seasonality of internal parasite infection in elephants, Loxodonta africana, in the Okavango Delta, Botswana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baines, Lydia; Morgan, Eric R; Ofthile, Mphoeng; Evans, Kate

    2015-04-01

    It is known from studies in a wide range of wild and domestic animals, including elephants, that parasites can affect growth, reproduction and health. A total of 458 faecal samples from wild elephants were analysed using a combination of flotation and sedimentation methods. Coccidian oocysts (prevalence 51%), and nematode (77%) and trematode (24%) eggs were found. Species were not identified, though trematode egg morphology was consistent with that of the intestinal fluke Protofasciola robusta. The following factors were found to have a significant effect on parasite infection: month, year, sex, age, and group size and composition. There was some evidence of peak transmission of coccidia and nematodes during the rainy season, confirmed for coccidia in a parallel study of seven sympatric domesticated elephants over a three month period. Nematode eggs were more common in larger groups and nematode egg counts were significantly higher in elephants living in maternal groups (mean 1116 eggs per gram, standard deviation, sd 685) than in all-male groups (529, sd 468). Fluke egg prevalence increased with increasing elephant age. Preservation of samples in formalin progressively decreased the probability of detecting all types of parasite over a storage time of 1-15 months. Possible reasons for associations between other factors and infection levels are discussed.

  17. Expression of Wnt signaling skeletal development genes in the cartilaginous fish, elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii).

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Damian G; Rana, Kesha; Milley, Kristi M; MacLean, Helen E; Zajac, Jeffrey D; Bell, Justin; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa; Richardson, Samantha J; Danks, Janine A

    2013-11-01

    Jawed vertebrates (Gnasthostomes) are broadly separated into cartilaginous fishes (Chondricthyes) and bony vertebrates (Osteichthyes). Cartilaginous fishes are divided into chimaeras (e.g. ratfish, rabbit fish and elephant shark) and elasmobranchs (e.g. sharks, rays and skates). Both cartilaginous fish and bony vertebrates are believed to have a common armoured bony ancestor (Class Placodermi), however cartilaginous fish are believed to have lost bone. This study has identified and investigated genes involved in skeletal development in vertebrates, in the cartilaginous fish, elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii). Ctnnb1 (β-catenin), Sfrp (secreted frizzled protein) and a single Sost or Sostdc1 gene (sclerostin or sclerostin domain-containing protein 1) were identified in the elephant shark genome and found to be expressed in a number of tissues, including cartilage. β-catenin was also localized in several elephant shark tissues. The expression of these genes, which belong to the Wnt/β-catenin pathway, is required for normal bone formation in mammals. These findings in the cartilaginous skeleton of elephant shark support the hypothesis that the common ancestor of cartilaginous fishes and bony vertebrates had the potential for making bone.

  18. Effects of rainfall, host demography, and musth on strongyle fecal egg counts in African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in Namibia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurber, M I; O'Connell-Rodwell, C E; Turner, W C; Nambandi, K; Kinzley, C; Rodwell, T C; Faulkner, C T; Felt, S A; Bouley, D M

    2011-01-01

    Wild African elephants (Loxodonta africana) are commonly infected with intestinal strongyle parasites. Our objective was to determine baseline fecal strongyle egg counts for elephants in the northeast region of Etosha National Park, Namibia and determine if these numbers were affected by annual rainfall, elephant demography (age of individuals and composition of groups), and hormonal state of males. We found that matriarchal family group members have significantly higher fecal egg counts than male elephants (bulls). Among family group members, strongyle egg counts increased with age, whereas among bulls, strongyle egg counts decreased with age. Years of higher rainfall were correlated with decreased numbers of strongyle eggs among bulls. Finally, bulls were not affected by their physiologic (hormonal) status (musth vs. nonmusth). These results suggest that infection by strongyle parasites in Namibian African elephants is a dynamic process affected by intrinsic and extrinsic factors including host demography and rainfall.

  19. Salient features in locomotor evolutionary adaptations of proboscideans revealed via the differential scaling of limb long bones

    CERN Document Server

    Kokshenev, Valery B

    2009-01-01

    The standard differential scaling of proportions in limb long bones (length against circumference) is applied to a phylogenetically wide sample of the Proboscidea, Elephantidae and the Asian (Elephas maximus) and African elephant (Loxodonta africana). In order to investigate allometric patterns in proboscideans and terrestrial mammals with parasagittal limb kinematics, the computed slopes (slenderness exponents) are compared with published values for mammals and studied within a framework of theoretical models of long bone scaling under gravity and muscle forces. Limb bone allometry in E. maximus and the Elephantidae are congruent with adaptation to bending and/or torsion induced by muscular forces during fast locomotion, as in other mammals, whereas limb bones in L. africana appear adapted for coping with the compressive forces of gravity. Consequently, hindlimb bones are expected to be more compliant than forelimb bones in accordance with in vivo studies on elephant locomotory kinetics and kinematics, and t...

  20. Does the Olympic movement need the "white elephants"?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boris A. Ermakov

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available It's no secret that one of the most sensitive issues related to the Olympic legacy is the issue of the white elephants. That’s what we call buildings and facilities constructed specifically for the competitions but not used after the Games and only inflicting losses. This issue is now growing into one of the most relevant, not only for the countries and cities which have received the highest honour of hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games, but for the Olympic movement in general. This article describes the authors’ vision of ways to address the issue of white elephants through the implementation of a new organizational and financial model, which provides for the shift of the conventional Olympic paradigm, particularly with respect to selection of the to-be-host cities for the up-coming Olympics, and their funding instrument. The main idea of the proposed change is resolving to transformation of the Games venue selection procedures, with the abandonment of the city-specific applicant selection approach, and transition to deciding in favour of one of the Earth’s five continents as a future Olympic tilt-yard, with respect to the rotation principle. It is proposed that the obligations to organize the Olympic Games within this new system should be assigned to the Continental Olympic Committee (COC, operating on a permanent basis and including the representatives of the National Olympic Committees of this continent according to an agreed quota. Furthermore, it is proposed that governments of the continent’s countries should proportionately provide for financing the costs of the Games delivery. It is proposed to select locations for the future Olympic competitions from the standpoint that such locations should have all the necessary infrastructure in place and should not require fundamental investment. Continental Olympic Centres should be established in such locations. In our opinion, Continental Olympic Centre is a unified facility located

  1. Development enhances hypometabolism in northern elephant seal pups (Mirounga angustirostris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tift, Michael S; Ranalli, Elizabeth C; Houser, Dorian S; Ortiz, Rudy M; Crocker, Daniel E

    2013-10-01

    Investigation into the development of oxygen storage capacity in air-breathing marine predators has been performed, but little is known about the development of regulatory factors that influence oxygen utilization. Strategies for efficiently using oxygen stores should enable marine predators to optimize time spent foraging underwater.We describe the developmental patterns of oxygen use during voluntary breath-holds in northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) at 2 and 7 weeks post-weaning. We measured 1) changes in oxygen consumption (VO2), and 2) changes in venous pH, partial pressure of oxygen (pO2), haemoglobin saturation (sO2), oxygen content (O2ct), partial pressure of carbon dioxide (pCO2), haematocrit (Hct) and total haemoglobin (tHb). To examine the effect of the dive response on the development of oxygen utilization, voluntary breath-hold experiments were conducted in and out of water.Suppression of VO2 during voluntary breath-holds increased significantly between 2 and 7 weeks post-weaning, reaching a maximum suppression of 53% below resting metabolic rate and 56% below Kleiber's standard metabolic rate. From 2 to 7 weeks post-weaning, breath-hold VO2 was reduced by 52%. Between the two age classes, this equates to a mean breath-hold VO2 reduction of 16% from resting VO2. Breath-hold VO2 also declined with increasing breath-hold duration, but there was no direct effect of voluntary submergence on reducing VO2.Age did not influence rates of venous pO2 depletion during breath-holds. However, voluntary submergence did result in slower pO2 depletion rates when compared to voluntary terrestrial apnoeas. The differences in whole body VO2 during breath-holds (measured at recovery) and venous pO2 (reflective of tissue O2-use measured during breath-holds), likely reflects metabolic suppression in hypoxic, vasoconstricted tissues.Consistent pCO2 values at the end of all voluntary breath-holds (59.0 ± 0.7 mmHg) suggests the physiological cue for stimulating

  2. Using Poaching Levels and Elephant Distribution to Assess the Conservation Efficacy of Private, Communal and Government Land in Northern Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ihwagi, Festus W; Wang, Tiejun; Wittemyer, George; Skidmore, Andrew K; Toxopeus, Albertus G; Ngene, Shadrack; King, Juliet; Worden, Jeffrey; Omondi, Patrick; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2015-01-01

    Efforts to curb elephant poaching have focused on reducing demand, confiscating ivory and boosting security patrols in elephant range. Where land is under multiple uses and ownership, determining the local poaching dynamics is important for identifying successful conservation models. Using 2,403 verified elephant, Loxodonta africana, mortality records collected from 2002 to 2012 and the results of aerial total counts of elephants conducted in 2002, 2008 and 2012 for the Laikipia-Samburu ecosystem of northern Kenya, we sought to determine the influence of land ownership and use on diurnal elephant distribution and on poaching levels. We show that the annual proportions of illegally killed (i.e., poached) elephants increased over the 11 years of the study, peaking at 70% of all recorded deaths in 2012. The type of land use was more strongly related to levels of poaching than was the type of ownership. Private ranches, comprising only 13% of land area, hosted almost half of the elephant population and had significantly lower levels of poaching than other land use types except for the officially designated national reserves (covering only 1.6% of elephant range in the ecosystem). Communal grazing lands hosted significantly fewer elephants than expected, but community areas set aside for wildlife demonstrated significantly higher numbers of elephants and lower illegal killing levels relative to non-designated community lands. While private lands had lower illegal killing levels than community conservancies, the success of the latter relative to other community-held lands shows the importance of this model of land use for conservation. This work highlights the relationship between illegal killing and various land ownership and use models, which can help focus anti-poaching activities.

  3. Using Poaching Levels and Elephant Distribution to Assess the Conservation Efficacy of Private, Communal and Government Land in Northern Kenya.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Festus W Ihwagi

    Full Text Available Efforts to curb elephant poaching have focused on reducing demand, confiscating ivory and boosting security patrols in elephant range. Where land is under multiple uses and ownership, determining the local poaching dynamics is important for identifying successful conservation models. Using 2,403 verified elephant, Loxodonta africana, mortality records collected from 2002 to 2012 and the results of aerial total counts of elephants conducted in 2002, 2008 and 2012 for the Laikipia-Samburu ecosystem of northern Kenya, we sought to determine the influence of land ownership and use on diurnal elephant distribution and on poaching levels. We show that the annual proportions of illegally killed (i.e., poached elephants increased over the 11 years of the study, peaking at 70% of all recorded deaths in 2012. The type of land use was more strongly related to levels of poaching than was the type of ownership. Private ranches, comprising only 13% of land area, hosted almost half of the elephant population and had significantly lower levels of poaching than other land use types except for the officially designated national reserves (covering only 1.6% of elephant range in the ecosystem. Communal grazing lands hosted significantly fewer elephants than expected, but community areas set aside for wildlife demonstrated significantly higher numbers of elephants and lower illegal killing levels relative to non-designated community lands. While private lands had lower illegal killing levels than community conservancies, the success of the latter relative to other community-held lands shows the importance of this model of land use for conservation. This work highlights the relationship between illegal killing and various land ownership and use models, which can help focus anti-poaching activities.

  4. Diabetic nephropathy in Surinamese South Asian subjects

    OpenAIRE

    Chandieshaw, Prataap Kalap; Chandie Shaw, Prataap Kalap

    2008-01-01

    This thesis focuses on the incidence and risk factors for nephropathy in diabetic and non-diabetic Surinamese South Asians. The Surinamese South Asians, originally descended from the North-East India. Due to the former colonial bounds with the Netherlands, a relatively young South Asian migrant population settled in the Netherlands. South Asians have a high prevalence of central obesity and an eight-fold higher prevalence for type 2 diabetes mellitus. We found the following conclusions: 1.Sur...

  5. Genomic behavior of hybrid combinations between elephant grass and pearl millet

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    Fernando Ferreira Leão

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to evaluate the genomic behavior of hybrid combinations between elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum and pearl millet (P. glaucum. Tetraploid (AAA'B and pentaploid (AA'A'BB chromosome races resulting from the backcross of the hexaploid hybrid to its parents elephant grass (A'A'BB and pearl millet (AA were analyzed as to chromosome number and DNA content. Genotypes of elephant grass, millet, and triploid and hexaploid induced hybrids were compared. Pentaploid and tetraploid genomic combinations showed high level of mixoploidy, in discordance with the expected somatic chromosome set. The pentaploid chromosome number ranged from 20 to 34, and the tetraploid chromosome number from 16 to 28. Chromosome number variation was higher in pentaploid genomic combinations than in tetraploid, and mixoploidy was observed among hexaploids. Genomic combinations 4x and 5x are mixoploid, and the variation of chromosome number within chromosomal race 5x is greater than in 4x.

  6. African elephants (Loxodonta africana) recognize visual attention from face and body orientation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smet, Anna F; Byrne, Richard W

    2014-07-01

    How do animals determine when others are able and disposed to receive their communicative signals? In particular, it is futile to make a silent gesture when the intended audience cannot see it. Some non-human primates use the head and body orientation of their audience to infer visual attentiveness when signalling, but whether species relying less on visual information use such cues when producing visual signals is unknown. Here, we test whether African elephants (Loxodonta africana) are sensitive to the visual perspective of a