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  1. Elephant logging and environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tin-Aung-Hla

    1995-01-01

    The natural environment comprises non-biological elements such as air, water, light, heat and biological elements of animal and plant life; all interact with each other to create an ecosystem. Human activities like over-exploitation of forest results in deforestation and desertification. This consequently changes ecological balance. Topics on: (1) history of elephants utilization; (2) elephant logging; (3) classification of elephants; (4) dragging gear; (5) elephant power; (6) elephant logging and environment, are discussed

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. A fatal elephant attack.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hejna, Petr; Zátopková, Lenka; Safr, Miroslav

    2012-01-01

    A rare case of an elephant attack is presented. A 44-year-old man working as an elephant keeper was attacked by a cow elephant when he tripped over a foot chain while the animal was being medically treated. The man fell down and was consequently repeatedly attacked with elephant tusks. The man sustained multiple stab injuries to both groin regions, a penetrating injury to the abdominal wall with traumatic prolapse of the loops of the small bowel, multiple defects of the mesentery, and incomplete laceration of the abdominal aorta with massive bleeding into the abdominal cavity. In addition to the penetrating injuries, the man sustained multiple rib fractures with contusion of both lungs and laceration of the right lobe of the liver, and comminuted fractures of the pelvic arch and left femoral body. The man died shortly after he had been received at the hospital. The cause of death was attributed to traumatic shock. © 2011 American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

  6. TB in Captive Elephants

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2017-04-27

    Dr. Barry Kreiswirth, founding director of the Public Health Research Institute, TB Center, at Rutgers University, discusses TB in three captive elephants.  Created: 4/27/2017 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 4/27/2017.

  7. Incidence of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus in Asian elephants in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barman, Nagendra N; Choudhury, Bhaskar; Kumar, Vishnu; Koul, Monika; Gogoi, Sophia M; Khatoon, Elina; Chakroborty, A; Basumatary, P; Barua, B; Rahman, T; Das, S K; Kumar, Sachin

    2017-09-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHVs) are the cause of acute hemorrhagic disease in endangered Asian and African elephants. In the present study, we report the incidence of EEHV infection and associated mortality in the captive elephant of Assam, India. Our result showed the gross morphology and histopathological changes of EEHV infection in the elephant. Moreover, the phylogenetic analysis of the polymerase, helicase, and GPCR genes from the infected tissue samples suggested the presence of EEHV1A virus. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. 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

  9. TB in Wild Asian Elephants

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2017-05-10

    Dr. Susan Mikota, co-founder of Elephant Care International, discusses TB in wild Asian elephants.  Created: 5/10/2017 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 5/10/2017.

  10. Are hills like white elephants?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunil Sharma

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available 'Are Hills Like White Elephants?' is, of course, inspired by Hemingway; the tribute reflects on the abiding relevance of serious art in a changed world and extends the boundaries of his message to other human situations.

  11. African elephant in a cleft stick

    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

  12. Elephant-to-Human Transmission of Tuberculosis

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    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.

  13. Subclinical infection of a young captive Asian elephant with elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azab, Walid; Damiani, Armando Mario; Ochs, Andreas; Osterrieder, Nikolaus

    2018-02-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHVs) are a continuous threat for young Asian elephants. We report a laboratory-confirmed infection of a 5-year-old female Asian elephant (AZ_2016) in the Berlin Zoologischer Garten. Initially, high EEHV-1 loads were detected in trunk swabs obtained from the young elephant during routine screening. The animal showed no clinical signs except for slight irritability. EEHV-1 was continuously shed for almost one year, with fluctuations in viral load from time to time. Our investigations highlight the continuous threat of EEHV-1 to young captive Asian elephants and stress the importance of routine monitoring of captive elephants to allow early detection of infection.

  14. Do elephants need to sweat?

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    (1936) measured a daily water intake of about ISO f by his elephant of 3 672 kg under cool ... the edge and the remaining tissue is stiffened by outwardly directed delicate fIngers of .... sity Council for fInancial assistance. Figure 3 (upper) is ...

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

    OpenAIRE

    R.G.T. Paley; G.I.H. Kerley

    1998-01-01

    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...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    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

  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

    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

    2007-01-01

    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. PMID:17407383

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.G.T. Paley

    1998-07-01

    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.

  20. Finding Elephant Flows for Optical Networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fioreze, Tiago; Oude Wolbers, Mattijs; van de Meent, R.; 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

  1. Seed Dispersal Potential of Asian Elephants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2016-01-01

    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 As...

  2. Elephant invasion and escalated depletion of environmental ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    For decades, elephants' invasion is known to be associated with severe environmental consequences leading to escalated depletion o environmental resources (plants, water, wildlife and soil). This paper examined the effects of elephants' activity on the environmental resources inHong and Gombi Local Government areas ...

  3. The Elephant Trunk Technique: A New Complication

    OpenAIRE

    Neri, Eugenio; Toscano, Thomas; Frati, Giacomo; Sassi, Carlo

    2001-01-01

    We describe a complication that occurred during the 2nd stage of an “elephant trunk” aortic replacement. The patient was a 58-year-old woman who had undergone graft replacement of the ascending aorta and aortic arch with the elephant trunk technique for an acute, Stanford type-A aortic dissection.

  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. The Dartmouth Elephant plasma facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, K. A.

    2017-12-01

    The Elephant facility in the Dartmouth Dept of Physics and Astronomyis a 1m by 2m chamber with a microwave-resonant plasma source togetherwith a higher energy electron/ion electrostatic gun. In this chamber weaim to re-create features of the auroral ionosphere including both thethermal plasma background, and the precipitating energetic auroral beam.We can manipulate the position and attitude of various sensors withinthe chamber and monitor their response to the various sources. Recentefforts have focussed on the sheath environment near and around thermalion RPA sensors and the small payloads which carry them into theionosphere.

  6. African bees to control African elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vollrath, Fritz; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2002-11-01

    Numbers of elephants have declined in Africa and Asia over the past 30 years while numbers of humans have increased, both substantially. Friction between these two keystone species is reaching levels which are worryingly high from an ecological as well as a political viewpoint. Ways and means must be found to keep the two apart, at least in areas sensitive to each species' survival. The aggressive African bee might be one such method. Here we demonstrate that African bees deter elephants from damaging the vegetation and trees which house their hives. We argue that bees can be employed profitably to protect not only selected trees, but also selected areas, from elephant damage.

  7. Knowledge management and the elephant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marcus, G.H.

    2004-01-01

    Full text: I am pleased that NEA is a sponsor of this important conference and that I have been given the opportunity to welcome all of you on behalf of NEA. Knowledge management has been a personal interest of mine for some time now, and I have been gratified to see the increasing interest in this area. This international conference is therefore most timely, and by drawing in experts from across the spectrum of knowledge management, has the potential to help integrate different aspects of this field, and thereby help chart its future course. I would like to try to set the stage for your meeting by posing a few issues that I hope you will consider during the course of this conference.1 Discussing knowledge management sometimes reminds me a little of the parable of the blind men and the elephant - or, if I may be politically correct, of the visually challenged people and the elephant. In this story, a number of sightless men approach an elephant and touch it in different places. 'Ah,' says the first, who is touching the elephant's massive leg, 'An elephant looks like a tree.' 'No,' objects the second, who is holding the ear, 'The elephant is clearly like a giant fan.' 'Come, come,' chides a third, who has grabbed the elephant by its trunk, 'The elephant most resembles a snake.' Others, touching the side of the animal conclude it is like a wall, or feeling the tusk believe it resembles a spear, or grasping the tail likens it to a rope.2 Likewise, in my discussions on knowledge management (KM), I come away with a sense that different nuclear communities have somewhat different perceptions of what it is, and therefore, of what the issues or problems are. For educators, KM is education, and the most important need is to develop the right academic courses to train the next generation of nuclear professionals. Corporate management sees KM in terms of its strategic market advantages, and considers the passing on of corporate knowledge a major need. In some parts of the

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. Vegetation attached to the elephant trunk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Akiko; Sakamoto, Toshihito; Okada, Kenji; Okita, Yutaka

    2013-09-01

    The elephant trunk technique is used as a standard method in the approach to staged repair of extensive thoracic aneurysms. Here, we present a rare case of a graft infection, in which vegetation was attached to the distal end of the elephant trunk. A 36-year old male who had undergone total arch replacement with elephant trunk installation for type A aortic dissection was readmitted for high-grade fever. At the time of admission, Osler's nodules were present and brain magnetic resonance imaging showed multiple small emboli and haemorrhages. Transoesophageal echocardiography could not locate any sign of infection within the cardiac chambers, but disclosed vegetation attached to the elephant trunk. He underwent successful emergent graft replacement of the lesion, and no recurrence of the infection has been observed.

  11. Onboard Acoustic Recording from Diving Elephant Seals

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Fletcher, Stacia

    1996-01-01

    The aim of this project was to record sounds impinging on free-ranging northern elephant seals, Mirounga angustirostris, a first step in determining the importance of LFS to these animals as they dive...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2013-01-01

    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

  13. 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.

  14. Water-body use by Asian elephants in Southern Sri Lanka

    OpenAIRE

    Pastorini, J; Nishantha, H G; Janaka, H K; Isler, K; Prithiviraj, F

    2010-01-01

    We assessed water-body use by elephants through monitoring elephant signs around them. Elephant footprints and dung piles were recorded at 25 water bodies fortnightly for one year. Elephants preferred perennial water bodies and avoided those with temporary human dwellings. Human activities did not significantly affect elephant use of water bodies, suggesting low incidence of activities and behavioral adaptation to them by elephants. Elephant signs at perennial water bodies increased in the dr...

  15. Elephant movement and local community attitudes towards the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The route commonly traversed by elephants was mapped using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) techniques. Two elephant sightings, footprints ... A majority of the respondents were aware of importance of elephants in tourism, as agents of seed dispersal, sources of bush meat ...

  16. The southern elephant seal Mirounga leonina at Gough Island

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    haul-out in December coincided with the elephant seal moulting season, the elephant seals were found on the vegetated areas whilst the majority of fur seals hauled out onto the boulder beach. No interactions between the two species were recorded. Potential predators of elephant seals, i.e. the killer whales Orcinus orca ...

  17. When elephants fall asleep: A literature review on elephant rest with case studies on elephant falling bouts, and practical solutions for zoo elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiffmann, Christian; Hoby, Stefan; Wenker, Christian; Hård, Therese; Scholz, Robert; Clauss, Marcus; Hatt, Jean-Michel

    2018-05-01

    Little attention has been paid to the resting and sleeping behavior of zoo elephants so far. An important concern is when elephants avoid lying down, due to degenerative joint and foot disease, social structure, or stressful environmental changes. Inability or unwillingness to lie down for resting is an important welfare issue, as it may impair sleep. We emphasize the importance of satisfying rest in elephants by reviewing the literature on resting behavior in elephants (Loxodonta africana and Elephas maximus) as well as the documentation of four cases from European zoos and our own direct observations in a zoo group of four female African elephants during 12 entire days. The common denominator in the case reports is the occurrence of a falling bout out of a standing position subsequently to a cessation of lying rest for different periods of time. Although well-known in horses as "episodic collapse" or "excessive drowsiness," this syndrome has not been described in elephants before. To enable its detection, we recommend nocturnal video monitoring for elephant-keeping institutions. The literature evaluation as well as own observational data suggest an inverse relationship between lying rest and standing rest. Preventative measures consist of enclosure modifications that facilitate lying rest (e.g., sand hills) or standing rest in a leaning position as a substitute. Anecdotal observations suggest that the provision of appropriate horizontal environmental structures may encourage safe, sleep-conducive standing rest. We provide drawings on how to install such structures. Effects of providing such structures should be evaluated in the future. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. 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...

  19. Insightful problem solving in an Asian elephant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  20. Summation by Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naoko Irie

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Recent empirical evidence for complex cognition in elephants suggests that greater attention to comparative studies between non-human primates and other animals is warranted. We have previously shown that elephants possess the ability to judge the difference between two discrete quantities, and unlike other animals, their choice does not appear to be affected by distance or overall quantity. In this study, we investigated Asian elephants’ ability to perform summation, as exemplified by the ability to combine four quantities into two sums and subsequently compare them. We presented two discrete sums (3–7 to the elephants by baiting two buckets; they were loaded sequentially with two discrete quantities (1–5 pieces of food per bucket. All three elephants selected the larger grand sum significantly more often than the smaller grand sum. Moreover, their performance was not affected by either distance to the bait or the overall quantity evaluated. Studies report that the performance of other animal species on similar tasks declines as distance to the bait decreases and as the overall quantities evaluated increase. These results suggest that the numerical cognition of Asian elephants may be different from that of other animals, but further study is required to elucidate the differences precisely.

  1. Monitoring and controlling ovarian activity in elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thitaram, Chatchote; Brown, Janine L

    2018-03-15

    Both Asian (Elephas maximus) and African (Loxodonta africana) elephants are important keystone, umbrella and flagship species. Paradoxically, world population numbers of both species are declining in many of their natural ranges due mainly to poaching, while over population of elephants in some areas is resulting in serious human-elephant conflict, and modifications of natural habitats that impact biodiversity. Understanding mechanisms of reproductive control is vital to effective population management, and for that reason significant advances have been made in endocrine and ultrasonographic monitoring techniques, particularly in studies of elephants ex situ. However, there remains a need to develop new methods to control ovarian activity, both for enhancing and inhibiting reproduction, to maintain population numbers at levels that ensure species survival and their ability to safely cohabitate with humans and other species. We present an overview of reproductive monitoring methods and how they have contributed to our knowledge of elephant reproductive biology, as well as their application for in situ and ex situ conservation purposes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Insightful problem solving in an Asian elephant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foerder, Preston; Galloway, Marie; Barthel, Tony; Moore, Donald E; Reiss, Diana

    2011-01-01

    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.

  3. Identification of shedders of elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses among Asian elephants (Elephas maximus in Switzerland.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathias Ackermann

    Full Text Available Elephants, particularly Asian (Elephas maximus, are threatened by lethal elephant hemorrhagic disease (EHD due to elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHV. At least five of seven known EEHV types have been associated to EHD, with types 1, 4, and 5 predominantly affecting Asian elephants. In Switzerland, at least three Asian elephants have been lost due to EHD but nothing is known about the present EEHV1 circulation. Moreover, the prevalence of other EEHV types has never been assessed. Intermittent shedding of EEHV can be monitored through collecting trunk secretions and analyzing them by PCR methods that discriminate the different EEHV types. To identify EEHV shedders, seven of eight Asian elephants in a Swiss zoo were trained to provide trunk wash samples. These were collected at intervals over a period of four months and tested by PCR for presence of EEHV1 through 6. Moreover, the quality of each sample was assessed by testing for the elephant TNF-alpha gene. Overall, 57% of the samples were valid with five of seven participating elephants identified as EEHV shedders. Two of those shed virus only once, whereas the other three, all closely related among each other, shed virus on multiple occasions. One of the frequent shedders had been in very close contact to all of the three EHD victims. Therefore, we speculate that this particular animal may represent the virus source in all three cases. However, when subtyping was conducted, the presently circulating virus was identified as EEHV1B, while the virus subtype causing EHD had been 1A in all three cases. In addition to four animals excreting EEHV1, a recently introduced animal was observed to shed EEHV3/4. We suggest that the policy of trunk washing to identify and characterize EEHV-shedders is to be endorsed in zoos with ongoing or planned elephant breeding programs.

  4. Mitochondrial DNA analysis of two southern African elephant populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.F. Essop

    1996-08-01

    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.

  5. Demography of a forest elephant population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkalo, Andrea K.; Wrege, Peter H.

    2018-01-01

    African forest elephants face severe threats from illegal killing for ivory and bushmeat and habitat conversion. Due to their cryptic nature and inaccessible range, little information on the biology of this species has been collected despite its iconic status. Compiling individual based monitoring data collected over 20 years from the Dzanga Bai population in Central African Republic, we summarize sex and age specific survivorship and female age specific fecundity for a cohort of 1625 individually identified elephants. Annual mortality (average = 3.5%) and natality (average = 5.3%) were lower and markedly less variable relative to rates reported for savanna elephant populations. New individuals consistently entered the study system, leading to a 2.5% average annual increase in the registered population. Calf sex ratios among known birth did not differ from parity. A weak seasonal signal in births was detected suggesting increased conceptions during the wet season. Inter-calf intervals and age of primiparity were longer relative to savanna elephant populations. Within the population, females between the ages of 25–39 demonstrated the shortest inter-calf intervals and highest fecundity, and previous calf sex had no influence on the interval. Calf survivorship was high (97%) the first two years after birth and did not differ by sex. Male and female survival began to differ by the age of 13 years, and males demonstrated significantly lower survival relative to females by the age of 20. It is suspected these differences are driven by human selection for ivory. Forest elephants were found to have one of the longest generation times recorded for any species at 31 years. These data provide fundamental understanding of forest elephant demography, providing baseline data for projecting population status and trends. PMID:29447207

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Evaluating herbivore extinction probabilities in Addo Elephant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Abstract. Population extinction evaluations, based on the model developed by Dennis et al. (1991) that did not take density dependence into account and that were based on census data, suggest that many of the herbivore species in Addo Elephant National Park (AENP) are vulnerable to local extinction. As a result of low ...

  10. Discovery Learning: Zombie, Phoenix, or Elephant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakker, Arthur

    2018-01-01

    Discovery learning continues to be a topic of heated debate. It has been called a zombie, and this special issue raises the question whether it may be a phoenix arising from the ashes to which the topic was burnt. However, in this commentary I propose it is more like an elephant--a huge topic approached by many people who address different…

  11. Making sense of elephants in the shamba

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bond, Jennifer Lauren

    . The discussion posited that institutional failures such as the lack of an efficient compensation policy, politics, and the top-down approach to wildlife policy indirectly impact on farmers’ perceptions and subsequent sensemaking processes regarding their interactions with elephants in their crops. This article...

  12. The Asian Elephant: Ecology and Management

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    or simply interested in elephant ecology and management in. Africa. the ... also discussed. The final chapters cover some problems of interaction between ... phylogeny and evolution now available. One such section ... animal and plant parasitic nematodes. .... infonnation on the adaptations to pollination in vygies, the photo-.

  13. 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.

    2013-01-01

    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. PMID:23505714

  14. Complex vibratory patterns in an elephant larynx.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herbst, Christian T; Svec, Jan G; Lohscheller, Jörg; Frey, Roland; Gumpenberger, Michaela; Stoeger, Angela S; Fitch, W Tecumseh

    2013-11-01

    Elephants' low-frequency vocalizations are produced by flow-induced self-sustaining oscillations of laryngeal tissue. To date, little is known in detail about the vibratory phenomena in the elephant larynx. Here, we provide a first descriptive report of the complex oscillatory features found in the excised larynx of a 25 year old female African elephant (Loxodonta africana), the largest animal sound generator ever studied experimentally. Sound production was documented with high-speed video, acoustic measurements, air flow and sound pressure level recordings. The anatomy of the larynx was studied with computed tomography (CT) and dissections. Elephant CT vocal anatomy data were further compared with the anatomy of an adult human male. We observed numerous unusual phenomena, not typically reported in human vocal fold vibrations. Phase delays along both the inferior-superior and anterior-posterior (A-P) dimension were commonly observed, as well as transverse travelling wave patterns along the A-P dimension, previously not documented in the literature. Acoustic energy was mainly created during the instant of glottal opening. The vestibular folds, when adducted, participated in tissue vibration, effectively increasing the generated sound pressure level by 12 dB. The complexity of the observed phenomena is partly attributed to the distinct laryngeal anatomy of the elephant larynx, which is not simply a large-scale version of its human counterpart. Travelling waves may be facilitated by low fundamental frequencies and increased vocal fold tension. A travelling wave model is proposed, to account for three types of phenomena: A-P travelling waves, 'conventional' standing wave patterns, and irregular vocal fold vibration.

  15. Application of stereo photogrammetric techniques for measuring African Elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J Hall-Martin

    1979-12-01

    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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

    2013-01-01

    Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHVs) can cause fatal hemorrhagic disease in juvenile Asian elephants (Elephas 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. PMID:23505702

  18. Ecological consequences of forest elephant declines for Afrotropical forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulsen, John R; Rosin, Cooper; Meier, Amelia; Mills, Emily; Nuñez, Chase L; Koerner, Sally E; Blanchard, Emily; Callejas, Jennifer; Moore, Sarah; Sowers, Mark

    2017-10-27

    Poaching is rapidly extirpating African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) from most of their historical range, leaving vast areas of elephant-free tropical forest. Elephants are ecological engineers that create and maintain forest habitat; thus, their loss will have large consequences for the composition and structure of Afrotropical forests. Through a comprehensive literature review, we evaluated the roles of forest elephants in seed dispersal, nutrient recycling, and herbivory and physical damage to predict the cascading ecological effects of their population declines. Loss of seed dispersal by elephants will favor tree species dispersed abiotically and by smaller dispersal agents, and tree species composition will depend on the downstream effects of changes in elephant nutrient cycling and browsing. Loss of trampling and herbivory of seedlings and saplings will result in high tree density with release from browsing pressures. Diminished seed dispersal by elephants and high stem density are likely to reduce the recruitment of large trees and thus increase homogeneity of forest structure and decrease carbon stocks. The loss of ecological services by forest elephants likely means Central African forests will be more like Neotropical forests, from which megafauna were extirpated thousands of years ago. Without intervention, as much as 96% of Central African forests will have modified species composition and structure as elephants are compressed into remaining protected areas. Stopping elephant poaching is an urgent first step to mitigating these effects, but long-term conservation will require land-use planning that incorporates elephant habitat into forested landscapes that are being rapidly transformed by industrial agriculture and logging. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  19. 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.

  20. Clinical leadership: the elephant in the room.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmonstone, John

    2009-01-01

    The article explores the concept of clinical leadership in the National Health Service in the UK by seeking to establish a workable definition and by contrasting it with managerial leadership, focussing on the 'disconnected hierarchy' in professional organizations. It proposes that the problems faced by clinical leadership relate to the current nature of general management in the NHS and concludes by suggesting that clinical leadership is the 'elephant in the room'-often ignored or unaddressed.

  1. Genetic assessment of captive elephant (Elephas maximus) populations in Thailand

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thitaram, Chatchote; Somgird, Chaleamchart; Mahasawangkul, Sittidet; Angkavanich, Taweepoke; Roongsri, Ronnachit; Thongtip, Nikorn; Colenbrander, Ben; van Steenbeek, Frank G.; Lenstra, Johannes A.

    2010-01-01

    The genetic diversity and population structure of 136 captive Thai elephants (Elephas maximus) with known region of origin were investigated by analysis of 14 highly polymorphic microsatellite loci. We did not detect significant indications of inbreeding and only a low differentiation of elephants

  2. Devastating decline of forest elephants in Central Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    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

  3. Fluctuations in the population of southern elephant seals Mirounga ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    and seals (Laws 1973). Predation. Carrick and Ingham (1962) indicated that the killer whale. Orcinus orca is an important predator of elephant seals, es- pecially of immature individuals. Moreover, Condy (1977) suggests that the observed decrease in the elephant seal population at Marion Island is due to a lowered recruit-.

  4. Predicting factors influencing crop raiding by elephants in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nyirenda et al.

    By developing predictive models of binary logistic regression and employing questionnaire surveys, we .... Lupande Game Management Area (GMA), covering an area of 4 840 km2 constitutes the ...... Temporal trends in elephant ... the modern conservation paradigm: Can agricultural communities co- exist with elephant?

  5. Do elephants need to sweat? | Wright | African Zoology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    An adequate rate of evaporative water loss is considered essential for the maintenance of thermal balance in the elephant in warm climatic conditions. Histological studies have failed to reveal the existence of sweat glands in elephant skin. Transepidermal water-loss rate has been measured and shown to be sufficiently ...

  6. 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. 

  7. 'When elephants battle, the grass suffers.' Power, ivory and the Syrian elephant

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Çakirlar, Canan

    2016-01-01

    The craftsmanship of the ivory objects in Late Bronze Age and Iron Age Eastern Mediterranean leave no doubt as to their intention to impress. Elephant teeth are an important raw material for the manufacture of these objects. Zooarchaeological research shows that cranial, dental, and postcranial

  8. Radiation Protection Elephants in the Room

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vetter, R. J.

    2004-01-01

    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 e lephants 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 evolution of the system of

  9. 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.

  10. 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_maxim...us_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+maxim...us&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 ...

  11. 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.

  12. Structure and magnetic properties of nickel nanoparticles preparedby selective leaching

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Michalcová, A.; Svobodová, P.; Nováková, R.; Len, A.; Heczko, Oleg; Vojtěch, D.; Marek, I.; Novák, P.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 137, Dec (2014), s. 221-224 ISSN 0167-577X R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-03044S Institutional support: RVO:68378271 Keywords : nanoparticles * magnetic materials * metals and alloys * route * size Subject RIV: JG - Metallurgy Impact factor: 2.489, year: 2014

  13. 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.

  14. Investigating the depth of thermal burns in elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Shakespeare

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Histological examination of burn injuries in elephants revealed that the depth was not as severe as expected from clinical observation. Although the actual burn depth was deep, the thickness of elephant skin, especially the dermis, resulted in the lesions being classified as less severe than expected. Examination of skin samples from selected areas showed that most lesions were either superficial (1st degree or superficial partial-thickness (superficial 2nd degree burns with the occasional deep partial thickness (deep 2nd degree wound. These lesions however, resulted in severe complications that eventually led to the death of a number of the elephants.

  15. Elephant management: a scientific assessment of South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available families between Sabi Sand Game Reserve and Kruger 359 xiiiList of figures Chapter 10 1 Values for the environment 448 2 Impact of crop damage costs due to elephants on the economic gross output, the contribution to the gross national income... Impact of elephant crop damage costs on the measures of private and economic viability for a model CBNRM community trust investment in the Okavango Delta, Botswana 459 6 Valuation studies on African elephants 463 7 Summary of main economic values...

  16. 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.

  17. On the Possible Detection of Lightning Storms by Elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael C. Kelley

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Theoretical calculations suggest that sounds produced by thunderstorms and detected by a system similar to the International Monitoring System (IMS for the detection of nuclear explosions at distances ≥100 km, are at sound pressure levels equal to or greater than 6 × 10−3 Pa. Such sound pressure levels are well within the range of elephant hearing. Frequencies carrying these sounds might allow for interaural time delays such that adult elephants could not only hear but could also locate the source of these sounds. Determining whether it is possible for elephants to hear and locate thunderstorms contributes to the question of whether elephant movements are triggered or influenced by these abiotic sounds.

  18. The relative host status of rock elephant shrews Elephantulus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1991-10-18

    Oct 18, 1991 ... rocky terrain, occur in South Africa (Smithers 1983) and the distribution of ... elephant shrews on northern and on southern slopes on the farm 'Preezfon- .... this has caused paralysis in Angora goat kids (Fourie et al. 1988a).

  19. 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.

  20. Predictors of elephant poaching in a wildlife crime hotspot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zafra-Calvo, Noelia; Lobo, J.M.; Prada, C.

    2018-01-01

    Understanding the spatial distribution of elephant carcasses in relation to ecological characteristics and human activities is critical to developing targeted management strategies for reducing poaching. We employ a spatial modelling approach to quantify the relative contribution of multiple...

  1. A Case of an Aortic Abscess around the Elephant Trunk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujii, Takeshiro; Kawasaki, Muneyasu; Katayanagi, Tomoyuki; Okuma, Shinnosuke; Masuhara, Hiroshi; Shiono, Noritsugu; Watanabe, Yoshinori

    2015-01-01

    A 52-year-old male patient with a history of total arch replacement using the elephant trunk technique for acute aortic dissection 4 years before visited our hospital with the chief complaint of persistent fever. Chest computed tomography (CT) suggested prosthetic vascular graft infection, which was treated surgically after chemotherapy. The first surgery consisted of debridement of an abscess around the vascular graft and in the aorta around the elephant trunk, and thoracic descending aorta replacement and vacuum-assisted closure (VAC) in view of the risk of bleeding from the peripheral region of the elephant trunk. One week later, omental filling was performed as the second step. This is a very rare case of aortic abscess around the elephant trunk that could successfully be managed by graft-conserving treatment.

  2. Physiological stress and refuge behavior by African elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David S Jachowski

    Full Text Available Physiological stress responses allow individuals to adapt to changes in their status or surroundings, but chronic exposure to stressors could have detrimental effects. Increased stress hormone secretion leads to short-term escape behavior; however, no studies have assessed the potential of longer-term escape behavior, when individuals are in a chronic physiological state. Such refuge behavior is likely to take two forms, where an individual or population restricts its space use patterns spatially (spatial refuge hypothesis, or alters its use of space temporally (temporal refuge hypothesis. We tested the spatial and temporal refuge hypotheses by comparing space use patterns among three African elephant populations maintaining different fecal glucocorticoid metabolite (FGM concentrations. In support of the spatial refuge hypothesis, the elephant population that maintained elevated FGM concentrations (iSimangaliso used 20% less of its reserve than did an elephant population with lower FGM concentrations (Pilanesberg in a reserve of similar size, and 43% less than elephants in the smaller Phinda reserve. We found mixed support for the temporal refuge hypothesis; home range sizes in the iSimangaliso population did not differ by day compared to nighttime, but elephants used areas within their home ranges differently between day and night. Elephants in all three reserves generally selected forest and woodland habitats over grasslands, but elephants in iSimangaliso selected exotic forest plantations over native habitat types. Our findings suggest that chronic stress is associated with restricted space use and altered habitat preferences that resemble a facultative refuge behavioral response. Elephants can maintain elevated FGM levels for ≥ 6 years following translocation, during which they exhibit refuge behavior that is likely a result of human disturbance and habitat conditions. Wildlife managers planning to translocate animals, or to initiate other

  3. Pulmonary aspergillosis in an African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaim, Ute; Paltian, Vanja; Krudewig, Christiane; Nieder, Anne; Wohlsein, Peter

    2009-04-01

    A 26-year-old female African elephant (Loxodonta africana) with a history of purulent pododermatitis, recurrent abdominal pain, and severe weight loss died spontaneously after a period of deteriorating disease. The main pathological finding was a severe bilateral pyogranulomatous, partially necrotizing pneumonia with numerous intralesional fungal hyphae. At microbiological examination Aspergillus spp. were isolated. The present case indicates that mycotic pneumonia should to be considered as a differential diagnosis of pulmonary disorders in elephants.

  4. Towards an Automated Acoustic Detection System for Free Ranging Elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeppelzauer, Matthias; Hensman, Sean; Stoeger, Angela S

    The human-elephant conflict is one of the most serious conservation problems in Asia and Africa today. The involuntary confrontation of humans and elephants claims the lives of many animals and humans every year. A promising approach to alleviate this conflict is the development of an acoustic early warning system. Such a system requires the robust automated detection of elephant vocalizations under unconstrained field conditions. Today, no system exists that fulfills these requirements. In this paper, we present a method for the automated detection of elephant vocalizations that is robust to the diverse noise sources present in the field. We evaluate the method on a dataset recorded under natural field conditions to simulate a real-world scenario. The proposed method outperformed existing approaches and robustly and accurately detected elephants. It thus can form the basis for a future automated early warning system for elephants. Furthermore, the method may be a useful tool for scientists in bioacoustics for the study of wildlife recordings.

  5. Has the VA Become a White Elephant?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robbins RA

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available No abstract available. Article truncated at 150 words. As I write this Dennis Wagner is publishing a series of articles in the Arizona Republic describing his quest to find out if care at VA hospitals have improved over the last 2 years (1. To begin the article Wagner describes the fable of the King of Siam who presented albino pachyderms to his enemies knowing they would be bankrupted because the cost of food and care outweighed all usefulness. A modern expression derives from this parable: the white elephant. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA has prided itself on being a leader in healthcare. It is the largest healthcare system in the US, implemented the first electronic medical record, and more than 70 percent of all US doctors have received training in the VA healthcare system (2. This year the VA is celebrating the 70th anniversary of its partnership with US medical schools. Beginning in 1946, the VA partnered ...

  6. A demographic model to predict future growth of the Addo elephant population

    OpenAIRE

    A.M. Woodd

    1999-01-01

    An age-structured demographic model of the growth of the Addo elephant population was developed using parameters calculated from long-term data on the population. The model was used to provide estimates of future population growth. Expansion of the Addo Elephant National Park is currently underway, and the proposed target population size for elephant within the enlarged park is 2700. The model predicts that this population size will be reached during the year 2043, so that the Addo elephant p...

  7. Making sense of human–elephant conflict in Laikipia County, Kenya

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bond, Jennifer Lauren

    2015-01-01

    This article proposes sensemaking theory to understand human–elephant interactions. The article draws on a case study of human–elephant interaction in Laikipia County, Kenya, to understand how farmers make sense of elephants in their crops. Drawing on eight interviews, the analysis showed that re...

  8. Habitat relationships of Asian elephants in shifting-cultivation landscapes of Meghalaya, Northeast India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce G. Marcot; Ashish Kumar; G. Talukdar; A.K. Srivastava

    2011-01-01

    In Asia and India, Asian elephants (Elaphas maximus) attain their highest densities and numbers in Meghalaya, particularly in Garo Hills, of northeast India. Little quantitative work has been done on elephant-habitat relationships in this region where the species' distribution is known to be highly fragmented. If elephants and their habitat...

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  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. Demographic variables for wild Asian elephants using longitudinal observations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Silva, Shermin; Webber, C Elizabeth; Weerathunga, U S; Pushpakumara, T V; Weerakoon, Devaka K; Wittemyer, George

    2013-01-01

    Detailed demographic data on wild Asian elephants have been difficult to collect due to habitat characteristics of much of the species' remaining range. Such data, however, are critical for understanding and modeling population processes in this endangered species. We present data from six years of an ongoing study of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in Uda Walawe National Park, Sri Lanka. This relatively undisturbed population numbering over one thousand elephants is individually monitored, providing cohort-based information on mortality and reproduction. Reproduction was seasonal, such that most births occurred during the long inter-monsoon dry season and peaked in May. During the study, the average age at first reproduction was 13.4 years and the 50(th) percentile inter-birth interval was approximately 6 years. Birth sex ratios did not deviate significantly from parity. Fecundity was relatively stable throughout the observed reproductive life of an individual (ages 11-60), averaging between 0.13-0.17 female offspring per individual per year. Mortalities and injuries based on carcasses and disappearances showed that males were significantly more likely than females to be killed or injured through anthropogenic activity. Overall, however, most observed injuries did not appear to be fatal. This population exhibits higher fecundity and density relative to published estimates on other Asian elephant populations, possibly enhanced by present range constriction. Understanding the factors responsible for these demographic dynamics can shed insight on the future needs of this elephant population, with probable parallels to other populations in similar settings.

  14. Demographic variables for wild Asian elephants using longitudinal observations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shermin de Silva

    Full Text Available Detailed demographic data on wild Asian elephants have been difficult to collect due to habitat characteristics of much of the species' remaining range. Such data, however, are critical for understanding and modeling population processes in this endangered species. We present data from six years of an ongoing study of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus in Uda Walawe National Park, Sri Lanka. This relatively undisturbed population numbering over one thousand elephants is individually monitored, providing cohort-based information on mortality and reproduction. Reproduction was seasonal, such that most births occurred during the long inter-monsoon dry season and peaked in May. During the study, the average age at first reproduction was 13.4 years and the 50(th percentile inter-birth interval was approximately 6 years. Birth sex ratios did not deviate significantly from parity. Fecundity was relatively stable throughout the observed reproductive life of an individual (ages 11-60, averaging between 0.13-0.17 female offspring per individual per year. Mortalities and injuries based on carcasses and disappearances showed that males were significantly more likely than females to be killed or injured through anthropogenic activity. Overall, however, most observed injuries did not appear to be fatal. This population exhibits higher fecundity and density relative to published estimates on other Asian elephant populations, possibly enhanced by present range constriction. Understanding the factors responsible for these demographic dynamics can shed insight on the future needs of this elephant population, with probable parallels to other populations in similar settings.

  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. 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.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason G Estes

    Full Text Available 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

    OpenAIRE

    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 consequences for the population itself and the diversity of plant and animal species in the conservation area. The Kasungu National Park suffers simultaneously from heavy illegal offtake and an elephant probl...

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Spectrum of antibody profiles in tuberculous elephants, cervids, and cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyashchenko, Konstantin P; Gortázar, Christian; Miller, Michele A; Waters, W Ray

    2018-02-01

    Using multi-antigen print immunoassay and DPP ® VetTB Assay approved in the United States for testing captive cervids and elephants, we analyzed antibody recognition of MPB83 and CFP10/ESAT-6 antigens in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis and in white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), fallow deer (Dama dama), elk (Cervus elaphus), and cattle (Bos taurus) infected with Mycobacterium bovis. Serum IgG reactivity to MPB83 was found in the vast majority of tuberculous cattle and cervid species among which white-tailed deer and elk also showed significant CFP10/ESAT-6 recognition rates with added serodiagnostic value. In contrast, the infected elephants developed antibody responses mainly to CFP10/ESAT-6 with MPB83 reactivity being relatively low. The findings demonstrate distinct patterns of predominant antigen recognition by different animal hosts in tuberculosis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Poaching and human encroachment reverse recovery of African savannah elephants in south-east Angola despite 14 years of peace

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chase, Michael J.; Griffin, Curtice R.

    2018-01-01

    With populations of African savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana) declining across the continent, assessing the status of individual elephant populations is important for conservation. Angola’s elephant population represents a key linkage between the larger populations of Namibia and Botswana. Elephants in Angola were decimated during the 1975–2002 Angolan civil war, but a 2005 survey showed that populations were recolonizing former habitats. Between 2005 and 2015, no research was permitted on elephants in Angola, but elsewhere in Africa many elephant populations experienced a poaching crisis. In 2015, we were able to resume elephant research in Angola. We used aerial surveys and satellite monitoring of collared elephants to determine the current status of elephant populations in Angola and to learn how human populations may be affecting elephant habitat usage. The aerial survey revealed a population of 3,395 ± SE of 797 elephants, but populations had declined 21% from the 2005 estimate. The high number of carcasses observed on the survey suggests that populations may have increased after the 2005 survey but were declining rapidly as of 2015. Satellite-collared elephants avoided areas elephants from preferred habitats near rivers. Taken together, these results suggest that Angola’s elephant population is experiencing intense poaching and may be losing habitat to human settlements. Without action to conserve their populations, Angola’s elephants face an uncertain future. PMID:29538387

  4. 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. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Geographic variation of stable isotopes in African elephant ivory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegler, S.; Merker, S.; Jacob, D.

    2012-04-01

    In 1989, the international community listed the African elephant in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) thus prohibiting commercial ivory trade. Recent surveillance data show that the illegal trade in ivory has been growing worldwide. Long-term preservation of many of the African elephant populations can be supported with a control mechanism that helps with the implementation of remedial conservation action. Therefore, setting up a reference database that predicts the origin of ivory specimens can assist in determining smuggling routes and the provenance of illegal ivory. Our research builds on earlier work to seek an appropriate method for determining the area of origin for individual tusks. Several researchers have shown that the provenance of elephant ivory can be traced by its isotopic composition, but this is the first attempt to produce an integrated isotopic reference database of elephant ivory provenance. We applied a combination of various routine geochemical analyses to measure the stable isotope ratios of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and sulphur. Up to now, we analysed 606 ivory samples of known geographical origin from African range states, museums and private collections, comprising 22 African elephant range states. The isotopic measurements were superimposed with data layers from vegetation, geology and climate. A regression function for the isotope composition of the water isotopes in precipitation and collagen in ivory was developed to overcome the problem of imprecise origin of some of the sampled material. Multivariate statistics, such as nearest neighborhood and discriminate analysis were applied to eventually allow a statistical determination of the provenance for ivory of unknown origin. Our results suggest that the combination of isotopic parameters have the potential to provide predictable and complementary markers for estimating the origin of seized elephant ivory.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Elephant population growth in Kruger National Park, South Africa, under a landscape management approach

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    Sam M. Ferreira

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available South African National Parks (SANParks manage landscapes rather than numbers of elephants (Loxodonta africana to mitigate the effects that elephants may have on biodiversity, tourism and stakeholder conservation values associated with protected areas. This management philosophy imposes spatial variability of critical resources on elephants. Restoration of such ecological processes through less intensive management predicts a reduction in population growth rates from the eras of intensive management. We collated aerial survey data since 1995 and conducted an aerial total count using a helicopter observation platform during 2015. A minimum of 17 086 elephants were resident in the Kruger National Park (KNP in 2015, growing at 4.2% per annum over the last generation of elephants (i.e. 12 years, compared to 6.5% annual population growth noted during the intensive management era ending in 1994. This may come from responses of elephants to density and environmental factors manifested through reduced birth rates and increased mortality rates. Authorities should continue to evaluate the demographic responses of elephants to landscape scale interventions directed at restoring the limitation of spatial variance in resource distribution on elephant spatiotemporal dynamics and the consequences that may have for other conservation values. Conservation implications: Conservation managers should continue with surveying elephants in a way that allows the extraction of key variables. Such variables should focus on measures that reflect on how theory predicts elephants should respond to management interventions.

  10. Human-elephant conflict in western Thailand: Socio-economic drivers and potential mitigation strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matteson, Kevin

    2018-01-01

    Understanding human-wildlife conflict is an important first step in the conservation of highly endangered species that can have adverse effects on human communities, such as elephants. To gain insights into variables that shape attitudes toward elephant conservation in Asia, we surveyed 410 households and 46 plantation owners in seven villages around the Salakpra Wildlife Sanctuary in western Thailand, an area of high human-elephant conflict. We sought to evaluate how past experiences with elephants (positive or negative), as well as socio-economic variables (age, income level, gender, and employment type) affect attitudes toward elephant conservation and coexistence in this area. In addition, we quantified deterrence methods currently used and identify potential mitigation strategies supported by community members. In general, less supportive attitudes toward elephant conservation and coexistence were held by individuals older than 35 years of age, those who had previously had experienced negative interactions with elephants, those with lower incomes, and those working in the agricultural sector. Conversely, those who had received benefits from living near elephants (e.g., supplemental income or feelings of pride from hosting volunteers or participating in conservation work) had more supportive views of elephant coexistence. Plantation owners reported using a variety of deterrence methods with varying success, with firecrackers being the most commonly utilized method. Community members identified several potentially beneficial mitigation strategies including forest restorations and patrol teams, adding water sources to wild elephant habitat, and education of local school and community groups. Overall, our results highlight the value of community members receiving benefits from living near elephants and suggest that special incentives may be needed for demographic groups disproportionately affected by elephants (e.g. those at lower income levels, those working in

  11. 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

  12. Preemergence herbicides on weed control in elephant grass pasture

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    Alexandre Magno Brighenti

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schum. is an important forage crop that has been proposed as a potential feedstock for bioenergy production. However, weed interference is a major factor limiting elephant grass production. Field experiments were conducted in 2014 and 2015 to evaluate preemergence herbicides for selective weed control in an elephant grass pasture. Herbicide treatments included atrazine + S-metolachlor, atrazine + simazine, ametryn, ethoxysulfuron, S-metolachlor, diuron + hexazinone, sulfentrazone, imazethapyr, and atrazine at label use rates. Weedy and weed-free treatments were included. Atrazine + S-metolachlor, atrazine + simazine, ametryn, ethoxysulfuron, S-metolachlor, sulfentrazone, and atrazine did not cause phytotoxicity on elephantgrass 35 days after treatment (DAT. However, diuron + hexazinone and imazethapyr were the most phytotoxic on elephantgrass, resulting in 81 and 70% phytotoxicity in 2014, and 7 and 6% phytotoxicity in 2015 respectively 35 DAT. All treatments provided effective weed control (>81% with the exception of ethoxysulfuron (0 and 11% in 2014 and 2015, respectively, and atrazine (59% in 2014. These results show that atrazine + S-metolachlor, atrazine + simazine, ametryn, ethoxysulfuron, S-metolachlor, sulfentrazone, and atrazine were selectives when applied in preemergence in elephant grass pasture.

  13. Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection of domesticated Asian elephants, Thailand.

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Four Asian elephants were confirmed to be infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis by bacterial culture, other diagnostic procedures, and sequencing of 16S–23S rDNA internal transcribed spacer region, 16S rRNA, and gyrase B gene sequences. Genotyping showed that the infectious agents originated from 4 sources in Thailand. To identify infections, a combination of diagnostic assays is essential.

  14. Why do elephants flap their ears? | Wright | African Zoology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The blood flow in the ear of the African elephant Loxodonta africana was measured In anaesthetized animals using the dye dilution technique at the same time as the arterio-venous temperature difference. The calculated heat loss from the ear is shown to be a substantial proportion of the total metabolic heat-loss ...

  15. Natal site fidelity by breeding female southern elephant seals in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Of the four types of terrestrial haulout periods undertaken by southern elephant seals Mirounga leonina, only the purpose of the winter haulout is unknown. Returning to a haulout site from distant pelagic foraging grounds bears significant costs in terms of increased energy expenditure, reduced foraging time and increased ...

  16. Lion predation on elephants in the Savuti, Chobe National Park ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Botswana's Savuti lions, however, switch to preying on elephants during the late dry season (August–November), and the frequency of this has increased in the last two decades (1985–2005). An opportunity to document this phenomenon was made possible with infrared viewing and filming equipment. A pride of 30 lions ...

  17. Meteorology and elephant infrasound at Etosha National Park, Namibia

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Larom, D

    1997-03-01

    Full Text Available are used to estimate elephant infrasonic calling range and calling area, Directionality and calling range are shown to be controlled by the diurnal cycle in wind (shear) and temperature. Low-level nocturnal radiative temperature inversions and low surface...

  18. Intestinal protozoa of the African elephant Loxodonta africana ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The digestive tract of 15 elephants from South Africa and two from Zaïre were sampled in order to determine the identity, density and population composition of the intestinal protozoa. The following orders were represented: Gymnostomatida, Trichostomatida and Entodiniomorphida. Altogether 17 species were identified, ...

  19. THROMBOELASTOGRAPHY IN THE HEALTHY ASIAN ELEPHANT (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Perrin, Kathryn L.; Krogh, Anne K.; Kjelgaard-Hansen, Mads

    2018-01-01

    elephants. Kaolin-activated TEG was performed on whole blood at 60 min and 24 hr postsampling (to replicate shipment to an external laboratory) as well as on freeze–thawed plasma samples, 12–14 mo postsampling. Reference intervals were calculated for fresh whole blood and freeze–thawed plasma samples...

  20. 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

  1. 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.

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

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    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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. The dynamics of social networks among female Asian elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Silva Shermin

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Patterns in the association of individuals can shed light on the underlying conditions and processes that shape societies. Here we characterize patterns of association in a population of wild Asian Elephants at Uda Walawe National Park in Sri Lanka. We observed 286 individually-identified adult female elephants over 20 months and examined their social dynamics at three levels of organization: pairs of individuals (dyads, small sets of direct companions (ego-networks, and the population level (complete networks. Results Corroborating previous studies of this and other Asian elephant populations, we find that the sizes of elephant groups observed in the field on any particular day are typically small and that rates of association are low. In contrast to earlier studies, our longitudinal observations reveal that individuals form larger social units that can be remarkably stable across years while associations among such units change across seasons. Association rates tend to peak in dry seasons as opposed to wet seasons, with some cyclicity at the level of dyads. In addition, we find that individuals vary substantially in their fidelity to companions. At the ego-network level, we find that despite these fluctuations, individuals associate with a pool of long-term companions. At the population level, social networks do not exhibit any clear seasonal structure or hierarchical stratification. Conclusions This detailed longitudinal study reveals different social dynamics at different levels of organization. Taken together, these results demonstrate that low association rates, seemingly small group sizes, and fission-fusion grouping behavior mask hidden stability in the extensive and fluid social affiliations in this population of Asian elephants.

  7. Functional nonredundancy of elephants in a disturbed tropical forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-01

    Conservation efforts are often motivated by the threat of global extinction. Yet if conservationists had more information suggesting that extirpation of individual species could lead to undesirable ecological effects, they might more frequently attempt to protect or restore such species across their ranges even if they were not globally endangered. Scientists have seldom measured or quantitatively predicted the functional consequences of species loss, even for large, extinction-prone species that theory suggests should be functionally unique. We measured the contribution of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) to the dispersal of 3 large-fruited species in a disturbed tropical moist forest and predicted the extent to which alternative dispersers could compensate for elephants in their absence. We created an empirical probability model with data on frugivory and seed dispersal from Buxa Tiger Reserve, India. These data were used to estimate the proportion of seeds consumed by elephants and other frugivores that survive handling and density-dependent processes (Janzen-Connell effects and conspecific intradung competition) and germinate. Without compensation, the number of seeds dispersed and surviving density-dependent effects decreased 26% (Artocarpus chaplasha), 42% (Careya arborea), and 72% (Dillenia indica) when elephants were absent from the ecosystem. Compensatory fruit removal by other animals substantially ameliorated these losses. For instance, reductions in successful dispersal of D. indica were as low as 23% when gaur (Bos gaurus) persisted, but median dispersal distance still declined from 30% (C. arborea) to 90% (A. chaplasha) without elephants. Our results support the theory that the largest animal species in an ecosystem have nonredundant ecological functionality and that their extirpation is likely to lead to the deterioration of ecosystem processes such as seed dispersal. This effect is likely accentuated by the overall defaunation of many tropical

  8. 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.

  9. Being stressed outside the park — conservation of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in Namibia

    OpenAIRE

    Hunninck, Louis; Ringstad, Iris; Jackson, Craig Ryan; May, Roelof Frans; Fossøy, Frode; Uiseb, Kenneth; Killian, Werner; Røskaft, Eivin

    2017-01-01

    The conservation of the African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) is of prime importance for many African countries. Interactions between elephants and humans are known to induce stress and thereby have the potential to affect elephants’ fitness. In Namibia, anthropogenic disturbances are increasing due to increasing human population size and development, particularly near protected areas, such as national parks. In this study, we investigated elephant stress levels in relation to their l...

  10. How elephants utilize a miombo-wetland ecosystem in Ugalla landscape, Western Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Kalumanga, Elikana

    2015-01-01

    African elephants are ‘keystone’ species with respect to biodiversity conservation in Africa since they maintain habitats that support several animal communities by changing vegetation structure through foraging and by dispersing seeds between landscapes. Elephants are also ‘flagship’ species because, given their impressive size, they can make people sympathetic and stimulate local and international concerns for their protection. Economically, elephants contribute to national revenues as tour...

  11. Forage mass and stocking rate of elephant grass pastures managed under agroecological and conventional systems

    OpenAIRE

    Clair Jorge Olivo; Carlos Alberto Agnolin; Priscila Flôres Aguirre; Cláudia Marques de Bem; Tiago Luís da Ros de Araújo; Michelle Schalemberg Diehl; Gilmar Roberto Meinerz

    2014-01-01

    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 gra...

  12. Diurnal and Nocturnal Activity Time Budgets of Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus in a Zoological Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denise E. Lukacs

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The diurnal and nocturnal activity time budgets of five adult female Asian elephants (Elephas maximus were studied in a zoological park for two 24-hour, five 14-hour, and one 9-hour observation periods between May and June 2011. Relatively few studies have looked at detailed daytime and nighttime activity time budgets in captive Asian elephants. Continuous observation was used to measure the activity time budgets of at least one focal animal per observation period. The activity time budgets varied between animals and observation periods. The elephants spent 17-49% of the day (daylight hours standing, 1-9% of the day walking, 19-44% of the day eating, and 1-20% of the day using enrichment items. At night, the elephants spent 29-87% of the observation period standing, 1-19% of the night eating, and 0.1-10% of the night using enrichment items. At night, elephants spent 0-45% of the observation period lying down. Variations in activity time budgets between elephants and observation periods have been observed in other studies of captive and wild elephants. Results of this observational study allow comparison between groups of captive elephants and between captive and wild elephants. Furthermore, results of this study can inform management strategies.

  13. 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.

  14. A demographic model to predict future growth of the Addo elephant population

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    A.M. Woodd

    1999-07-01

    Full Text Available An age-structured demographic model of the growth of the Addo elephant population was developed using parameters calculated from long-term data on the population. The model was used to provide estimates of future population growth. Expansion of the Addo Elephant National Park is currently underway, and the proposed target population size for elephant within the enlarged park is 2700. The model predicts that this population size will be reached during the year 2043, so that the Addo elephant population can continue to increase for a further 44 years before its target size within the enlarged park is attained.

  15. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    English, Megan; Gillespie, Graeme; Goossens, Benoit; Ismail, Sulaiman; Ancrenaz, Marc; Linklater, Wayne

    2015-01-01

    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 quantities have

  17. Camera traps to study the forest elephant's (Loxodonta cyclotis) response to chilli pepper repellent devices in Gamba, Gabon

    OpenAIRE

    Steeve Ngama; Lisa Korte; Mireille Johnson; Cédric Vermeulen; Jérôme Bindelle

    2018-01-01

    In Central Africa, Gabon is a forested country with a rich biodiversity where conflict between wild animals and humans is common and causes innumerable damage to crops. The worst crop raiders are elephants, which can destroy an entire crop in a single night. These raids threaten people's livelihoods as well as elephants because angry farmers often retaliate with killing campaigns against crop raiding elephants. To keep elephants out of farms the use of chilli pepper is recommended as a non-le...

  18. Development of the tush and tusk and tusklessness in African elephant (Loxodonta africana)

    OpenAIRE

    E.J. Raubenheimer

    2000-01-01

    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 case...

  19. TL dating of vases with elephant ears in Yuan Dynasty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xia Junding; Wang Weida; Leung, P.L.

    2005-01-01

    Thermoluminescence (TL) dating using an activation method in pre-dose technique was described. Three vases in underglaze blue with elephant ears and one vase in underglaze red with elephant ears in Yuan Dynasty were dated by this method. The results show that the TL ages are all less than 100 a B.P., and in which sbc 648 and sbc 649 were imitated in recent years. This method is quick, convenient and reliable for porcelain dating with the age of less than 1000 a B.P.. As a comparison, a porcelain sample with underglaze blue in Yuan Dynasty was dated too, and its TL age is 620 ± 140 B.P.. In addition, some complex factors associated with dating have been discussed and a resolution has been raised, which will help improve the accuracy of TL dating. (authors)

  20. Delayed postpartum fetotomy in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaftenaar, Willem

    2013-03-01

    A 37-yr-old Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) started parturition after 640 days of pregnancy but no fetal parts entered the birth canal. Despite veterinary intervention, the calf was not delivered. After 13 mo calving resumed and a full-term dead calf advanced into and lodged within the vagina. With standing xylazine tranquilization, the dam received a vagino-vestibulotomy to permit total fetotomy of the calf, which presented with bilateral carpal arthrogryposis. Severe infection of the caudal vaginal vestibulum complicated wound healing, and over the following year two corrective surgeries were performed, which resolved the fistula 3 mo after the second debridement. The elephant not only survived the procedures but also resumed normal estrous cycles, as demonstrated by blood progesterone concentration monitoring.

  1. 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

  2. DNA analysis indicates that Asian elephants are native to Borneo and are therefore a high priority for conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prithiviraj Fernando

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available The origin of Borneo's elephants is controversial. Two competing hypotheses argue that they are either indigenous, tracing back to the Pleistocene, or were introduced, descending from elephants imported in the 16th-18th centuries. Taxonomically, they have either been classified as a unique subspecies or placed under the Indian or Sumatran subspecies. If shown to be a unique indigenous population, this would extend the natural species range of the Asian elephant by 1300 km, and therefore Borneo elephants would have much greater conservation importance than if they were a feral population. We compared DNA of Borneo elephants to that of elephants from across the range of the Asian elephant, using a fragment of mitochondrial DNA, including part of the hypervariable d-loop, and five autosomal microsatellite loci. We find that Borneo's elephants are genetically distinct, with molecular divergence indicative of a Pleistocene colonisation of Borneo and subsequent isolation. We reject the hypothesis that Borneo's elephants were introduced. The genetic divergence of Borneo elephants warrants their recognition as a separate evolutionary significant unit. Thus, interbreeding Borneo elephants with those from other populations would be contraindicated in ex situ conservation, and their genetic distinctiveness makes them one of the highest priority populations for Asian elephant conservation.

  3. Discovery of a predynastic elephant burial at Hierakonpolis, Egypt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Adams

    1998-11-01

    Full Text Available It has long been known that the ancient Egyptians buried such animals as dogs, baboons and cattle, sometimes in human tombs and sometimes in separate graves of their own. Now excavation in a cemetery associated with the large settlement of Hierakonpolis has led to the unexpected discovery of a 5700-year-old elephant burial. Here the Research Curator of the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology at UCL describes the discovery and discusses its significance.

  4. Prolonged fasting increases glutathione biosynthesis in postweaned northern elephant seals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vázquez-Medina, José Pablo; Zenteno-Savín, Tania; Forman, Henry Jay; Crocker, Daniel E.; Ortiz, Rudy M.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY Northern elephant seals experience prolonged periods of absolute food and water deprivation (fasting) while breeding, molting or weaning. The postweaning fast in elephant seals is characterized by increases in the renin–angiotensin system, expression of the oxidant-producing protein Nox4, and NADPH oxidase activity; however, these increases are not correlated with increased oxidative damage or inflammation. Glutathione (GSH) is a potent reductant and a cofactor for glutathione peroxidases (GPx), glutathione-S transferases (GST) and 1-cys peroxiredoxin (PrxVI) and thus contributes to the removal of hydroperoxides, preventing oxidative damage. The effects of prolonged food deprivation on the GSH system are not well described in mammals. To test our hypothesis that GSH biosynthesis increases with fasting in postweaned elephant seals, we measured circulating and muscle GSH content at the early and late phases of the postweaning fast in elephant seals along with the activity/protein content of glutamate-cysteine ligase [GCL; catalytic (GCLc) and modulatory (GCLm) subunits], γ-glutamyl transpeptidase (GGT), glutathione disulphide reductase (GR), glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH), GST and PrxVI, as well as plasma changes in γ-glutamyl amino acids, glutamate and glutamine. GSH increased two- to four-fold with fasting along with a 40–50% increase in the content of GCLm and GCLc, a 75% increase in GGT activity, a two- to 2.5-fold increase in GR, G6PDH and GST activities and a 30% increase in PrxVI content. Plasma γ-glutamyl glutamine, γ-glutamyl isoleucine and γ-glutamyl methionine also increased with fasting whereas glutamate and glutamine decreased. Results indicate that GSH biosynthesis increases with fasting and that GSH contributes to counteracting hydroperoxide production, preventing oxidative damage in fasting seals. PMID:21430206

  5. 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

  6. Discovery of a predynastic elephant burial at Hierakonpolis, Egypt

    OpenAIRE

    Barbara Adams

    1998-01-01

    It has long been known that the ancient Egyptians buried such animals as dogs, baboons and cattle, sometimes in human tombs and sometimes in separate graves of their own. Now excavation in a cemetery associated with the large settlement of Hierakonpolis has led to the unexpected discovery of a 5700-year-old elephant burial. Here the Research Curator of the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology at UCL describes the discovery and discusses its significance.

  7. Comparative demography of an at-risk African elephant population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittemyer, George; Daballen, David; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2013-01-01

    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 influenced by human

  8. 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.

  9. Elephant's foot phenomenon in liquid storage tanks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, C.Q.

    1983-01-01

    This paper presents a method for analyzing the seismic response of a flat bottomed cylindrical liquid storage tank to vertical earthquake excitation. Here, vertical earthquake acceleration is considered to correspond to an increase in the density of a stored liquid. Taking into account the vertical and horizontal earthquake loads, hydrostatic pressure, and considering restrictive moment and shear forces at shell-bottom welded joint, the author has calculated circumferential and longitudinal stresses. These are combined to more accurately approximate the stresses at the base shell course. The calculated result closely conforms to the actual damage, termed ''elephant's foot,'' observed in the fuel storage tanks damaged in the Tangshan earthquake. This result shows that the ''elephant's foot'' phenomenon is not caused by buckling of the tank shell due to longitudinal compressive stresses resulting from horizontal earthquake acceleration, but rather by the combined stresses in the base shell course of the storage tank exceeding the yield strength of the shell course material. The effect due to vertical earthquake load is more than the effect from the horizontal load. Finally, some earthquake resistant methods to prevent the ''elephant's foot'' phenomenon are suggested by the author.

  10. Morphological aspects and composition of African elephant (Loxodonta africana ivory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.J. Raubenheimer

    1999-07-01

    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.

  11. Nearby grandmother enhances calf survival and reproduction in Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-06-10

    Usually animals reproduce into old age, but a few species such as humans and killer whales can live decades after their last reproduction. The grandmother hypothesis proposes that such life-history evolved through older females switching to invest in their existing (grand)offspring, thereby increasing their inclusive fitness and selection for post-reproductive lifespan. However, positive grandmother effects are also found in non-menopausal taxa, but evidence of their associated fitness effects is rare and only a few tests of the hypothesis in such species exist. Here we investigate the grandmother effects in Asian elephants. Using a multigenerational demographic dataset on semi-captive elephants in Myanmar, we found that grandcalves from young mothers (years) had 8 times lower mortality risk if the grandmother resided with her grandcalf compared to grandmothers residing elsewhere. Resident grandmothers also decreased their daughters' inter-birth intervals by one year. In contrast to the hypothesis predictions, the grandmother's own reproductive status did not modify such grandmother benefits. That elephant grandmothers increased their inclusive fitness by enhancing their daughter's reproductive rate and success irrespective of their own reproductive status suggests that fitness-enhancing grandmaternal effects are widespread, and challenge the view that grandmother effects alone select for menopause coupled with long post-reproductive lifespan.

  12. Being stressed outside the park—conservation of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in Namibia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ringstad, Iris H; Jackson, Craig R; May, Roel; Fossøy, Frode; Uiseb, Kenneth; Killian, Werner; Palme, Rupert; Røskaft, Eivin

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The conservation of the African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) is of prime importance for many African countries. Interactions between elephants and humans are known to induce stress and thereby have the potential to affect elephants’ fitness. In Namibia, anthropogenic disturbances are increasing due to increasing human population size and development, particularly near protected areas, such as national parks. In this study, we investigated elephant stress levels in relation to their land use, specifically their protection status, comparing elephants within Etosha National Park in Namibia with elephants residing outside the park. We noninvasively collected dung samples of 91 elephants and determined the concentration of faecal glucocorticoid metabolites (fGCM), an indicator of physiological stress. Elephants outside the park (N = 35) had significantly higher concentrations of fGCM than those inside ENP (N = 56), suggesting that, despite including community-based conservancies, unprotected areas are more stressful for elephants than protected areas, most likely due to increased interactions with humans. We also found that males had lower fGCM concentrations than females, but no significant effect of age, body size or group size was detected. Additionally, herd sizes were significantly smaller and calf recruitment was potentially lower in unprotected areas. These findings underpin the importance of protected areas such as ENP, while encouraging decision-makers to continue reducing and mitigating potential human-induced disturbances. PMID:29270294

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadin Rohland

    2010-12-01

    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.

  14. Spatial and Temporal Habitat Use of an Asian Elephant in Sumatra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todd K. Fuller

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Increasingly, habitat fragmentation caused by agricultural and human development has forced Sumatran elephants into relatively small areas, but there is little information on how elephants use these areas and thus, how habitats can be managed to sustain elephants in the future. Using a Global Positioning System (GPS collar and a land cover map developed from TM imagery, we identified the habitats used by a wild adult female elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus in the Seblat Elephant Conservation Center, Bengkulu Province, Sumatra during 2007–2008. The marked elephant (and presumably her 40–60 herd mates used a home range that contained more than expected medium canopy and open canopy land cover. Further, within the home range, closed canopy forests were used more during the day than at night. When elephants were in closed canopy forests they were most often near the forest edge vs. in the forest interior. Effective elephant conservation strategies in Sumatra need to focus on forest restoration of cleared areas and providing a forest matrix that includes various canopy types.

  15. 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

  16. Survey sequencing and comparative analysis of the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byrappa Venkatesh

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available 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 (1.4x 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.

  17. Patch-occupancy survey of elephant (Loxodonta africana surrounding Livingstone, Zambia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. Prospects for managing African elephant population growth by immunocontraception: a review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Perdok, A.A.; Boer, de W.F.; Stout, T.A.E.

    2007-01-01

    Immunocontraception has been proposed as a tool for managing African elephant populations threatening to. 'outgrow' a wildlife reserve. To date, however, the only immunocontraceptive technique tested on elephant cows is porcine zona pellucida (pZP) vaccination, in which solubilized pZP is injected

  19. 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

  20. Systematic review on the conservation genetics of African savannah elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacarias, Daniel; Bini, Luis Mauricio; Loyola, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    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? 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. 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. Research in this field should be expanded to additional countries

  1. Systematic review on the conservation genetics of African savannah elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

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

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    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

  3. 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. Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. 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.

  5. USE OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS AS A COMPONENT OF TUSK FRACTURE MANAGEMENT IN AN ASIAN ELEPHANT (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS) AND AN AFRICAN ELEPHANT (LOXODONTA AFRICANA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sim, Richard R; Stringer, Elizabeth; Donovan, Dennis; Chappell, Rachael; Flora, Pat; Hall, Jon; Pillay, Selvum; Willis, Benjamin G; McCain, Stephanie

    2017-09-01

    Tusk fractures in Asian (Elephas maximus) and African elephants (Loxodonta africana) can result in damage to the distal end or to longitudinal cracks, potentially progressing to pulpitis. With pulp exposure, endodontic therapy is the treatment of choice, but conservative therapy has sufficed for some elephants. This manuscript describes the use of composite materials as a component of tusk fracture management. A 7-yr-old male Asian elephant fractured the distal end of both tusks with pulp exposure in one. Capping of each tusk with a Kevlar/fiberglass composite prevented further damage, and a modification allowed care of the exposed pulp tissue. A 34-yr-old male African elephant with a longitudinal crack received a carbon fiber/fiberglass composite circumferential wrap to potentially stabilize the crack. Compression of the crack was achieved, but follow-up was truncated due to bacterial pulpitis. Both cases show that composite material allows for lightweight, durable management of tusk fractures with continued radiographic monitoring.

  6. Asian elephants in China: estimating population size and evaluating habitat suitability.

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    Li Zhang

    Full Text Available We monitored the last remaining Asian elephant populations in China over the past decade. Using DNA tools and repeat genotyping, we estimated the population sizes from 654 dung samples collected from various areas. Combined with morphological individual identifications from over 6,300 elephant photographs taken in the wild, we estimated that the total Asian elephant population size in China is between 221 and 245. Population genetic structure and diversity were examined using a 556-bp fragment of mitochondrial DNA, and 24 unique haplotypes were detected from DNA analysis of 178 individuals. A phylogenetic analysis revealed two highly divergent clades of Asian elephants, α and β, present in Chinese populations. Four populations (Mengla, Shangyong, Mengyang, and Pu'Er carried mtDNA from the α clade, and only one population (Nangunhe carried mtDNA belonging to the β clade. Moreover, high genetic divergence was observed between the Nangunhe population and the other four populations; however, genetic diversity among the five populations was low, possibly due to limited gene flow because of habitat fragmentation. The expansion of rubber plantations, crop cultivation, and villages along rivers and roads had caused extensive degradation of natural forest in these areas. This had resulted in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and had formed artificial barriers that inhibited elephant migration. Using Geographic Information System, Global Positioning System, and Remote Sensing technology, we found that the area occupied by rubber plantations, tea farms, and urban settlements had dramatically increased over the past 40 years, resulting in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and forming artificial barriers that inhibit elephant migration. The restoration of ecological corridors to facilitate gene exchange among isolated elephant populations and the establishment of cross-boundary protected areas between China and Laos to secure

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  8. 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

  9. Tourism-induced disturbance of wildlife in protected areas: A case study of free ranging elephants in Sri Lanka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eranga Ranaweerage

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Tourism-induced disturbance is a growing concern in wildlife conservation worldwide. This case study in a key protected area in Sri Lanka, examined the behavioral changes of Asian elephants in the context of elephant watching tourism activities. Observations of different age–sex-group classes of elephants were conducted focusing on the feeding activity of elephants in the presence vs. absence of tourists. Frequency and duration of alert, fear, stress and aggressive behaviors of elephants were significantly high in the presence of tourists and these behaviors occurred at a cost of feeding time. Tourist behavior, vehicle noise, close distances and time of the tours were closely associated with the behavioral changes of elephants. It is important to monitor tourism effects on endangered species such as Asian elephants and to take proper measures including controlled tourist behavior and vehicle activity in protected areas in order to reduce disturbance of wildlife behavior.

  10. 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

    2014-11-01

    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.

  11. 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

  12. Tuberculosis serosurveillance and management practices of captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in the Kavango-Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosen, L E; Hanyire, T G; Dawson, J; Foggin, C M; Michel, A L; Huyvaert, K P; Miller, M A; Olea-Popelka, F J

    2018-04-01

    Transfrontier conservation areas represent an international effort to encourage conservation and sustainable development. Their success faces a number of challenges, including disease management in wildlife, livestock and humans. Tuberculosis (TB) affects humans and a multitude of non-human animal species and is of particular concern in sub-Saharan Africa. The Kavango-Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area encompasses five countries, including Zimbabwe, and is home to the largest contiguous population of free-ranging elephants in Africa. Elephants are known to be susceptible to TB; thus, understanding TB status, exposure and transmission risks to and from elephants in this area is of interest for both conservation and human health. To assess risk factors for TB seroprevalence, a questionnaire was used to collect data regarding elephant management at four ecotourism facilities offering elephant-back tourist rides in the Victoria Falls area of Zimbabwe. Thirty-five working African elephants were screened for Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex antibodies using the ElephantTB Stat-Pak and the DPP VetTB Assay for elephants. Six of 35 elephants (17.1%) were seropositive. The risk factor most important for seropositive status was time in captivity. This is the first study to assess TB seroprevalence and risk factors in working African elephants in their home range. Our findings will provide a foundation to develop guidelines to protect the health of captive and free-ranging elephants in the southern African context, as well as elephant handlers through simple interventions. Minimizing exposure through shared feed with other wildlife, routine TB testing of elephant handlers and regular serological screening of elephants are recommended as preventive measures. © 2017 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  13. Conventional versus frozen elephant trunk surgery for extensive disease of the thoracic aorta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Eusanio, Marco; Borger, Michael; Petridis, Francesco D; Leontyev, Sergey; Pantaleo, Antonio; Moz, Monica; Mohr, Friedrich; Di Bartolomeo, Roberto

    2014-11-01

    To compare early and mid-term outcomes after repair of extensive aneurysm of the thoracic aorta using the conventional elephant trunk or frozen elephant trunk (FET) procedures. Fifty-seven patients with extensive thoracic aneurysmal disease were treated using elephant trunk (n = 36) or FET (n = 21) procedures. Patients with aortic dissection, descending thoracic aorta (DTA) diameter less than 40 mm, and thoracoabdominal aneurysms were excluded from the analysis, as were those who did not undergo antegrade selective cerebral perfusion during circulatory arrest. Short-term and mid-term outcomes were compared according to elephant trunk/FET surgical management. Preoperative and intraoperative variables were similar in the two groups, except for a higher incidence of female sex, coronary artery disease and associated procedures in elephant trunk patients. Hospital mortality (elephant trunk: 13.9% versus FET: 4.8%; P = 0.2), permanent neurologic dysfunction (elephant trunk: 5.7% versus FET: 9.5%; P = 0.4) and paraplegia (elephant trunk: 2.9% versus FET: 4.8%; P = 0.6) rates were similar in the two groups. Follow-up was 100% complete. In the elephant trunk group, 68.4% of patients did not undergo a second-stage procedure during follow-up for a variety of reasons. Of these patients, the DTA diameter was greater than 51 mm in 72.2% and two (6.7%) died due to aortic rupture while awaiting stage-two intervention. Endovascular second-stage procedures were successfully performed in all FET patients with residual DTA aneurysmal disease (n = 3), whereas nine of 11 elephant trunk patients who returned for second-stage procedures required conventional surgical replacement through a lateral thoracotomy. Kaplan-Meier estimate of 4-year survival was 75.8 ± 7.6 and 72.8 ± 10.6 in elephant trunk and FET patients, respectively (log-rank P = 0.8). In patients with extensive aneurysmal disease of thoracic aorta, elephant trunk and FET procedures

  14. Water conservation in fasting northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester, Christopher W; Costa, Daniel P

    2006-11-01

    Prolonged terrestrial fasting is a key element in the life history of elephant seals. While on land seals typically fast without access to fresh water, and thus must maintain positive water balance by reductions in water loss such that they can subsist primarily on metabolic water production (MWP). The terrestrial apnea demonstrated by seals may reduce respiratory evaporative water loss (REWL) to levels that allow seals to make a net gain of water from MWP. We empirically measured REWL in 13 fasting northern elephant seal pups and determined the effects on water conservation of a breathing mode that incorporates a regular pattern of apneas, of > or =1 min in duration, followed by eupneic recovery, compared with a breathing mode with no apneas longer than 20 s and resembling typical breathing patterns in other mammals (normative breathing). Overall REWL fell 41% from 0.075+/-0.013 g min(-1) (mean +/- s.d.) during normative breathing to 0.044+/-0.006 g min(-1) during apneic breathing. The decline in REWL is attributed to a decrease in overall ventilation rate, made possible by a decline in metabolic rate along with an increase in oxygen extraction that would occur during apneic breathing. Data on the range of ambient humidity conditions at the local breeding site were collected and used to bound the range of environmental conditions used in laboratory measurements. Our data showed that the observed variations in ambient humidity had no significant effect on REWL. A combination of apneic breathing and the complex nasal turbinates allows fasting elephant seals to reduce REWL well below the rate of MWP so that they can maintain water balance during the fast.

  15. Elevated carboxyhemoglobin in a marine mammal, the northern elephant seal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tift, Michael S; Ponganis, Paul J; Crocker, Daniel E

    2014-05-15

    Low concentrations of endogenous carbon monoxide (CO), generated primarily through degradation of heme from heme-proteins, have been shown to maintain physiological function of organs and to exert cytoprotective effects. However, high concentrations of carboxyhemoglobin (COHb), formed by CO binding to hemoglobin, potentially prevent adequate O2 delivery to tissues by lowering arterial O2 content. Elevated heme-protein concentrations, as found in marine mammals, are likely associated with greater heme degradation, more endogenous CO production and, consequently, elevated COHb concentrations. Therefore, we measured COHb in elephant seals, a species with large blood volumes and elevated hemoglobin and myoglobin concentrations. The levels of COHb were positively related to the total hemoglobin concentration. The maximum COHb value was 10.4% of total hemoglobin concentration. The mean (± s.e.m.) value in adult seals was 8.7 ± 0.3% (N=6), while juveniles and pups (with lower heme-protein contents) had lower mean COHb values of 7.6 ± 0.2% and 7.1 ± 0.3%, respectively (N=9 and N=9, respectively). Serial samples over several hours revealed little to no fluctuation in COHb values. This consistent elevation in COHb suggests that the magnitude and/or rate of heme-protein turnover is much higher than in terrestrial mammals. The maximum COHb values from this study decrease total body O2 stores by 7%, thereby reducing the calculated aerobic dive limit for this species. However, the constant presence of elevated CO in blood may also protect against potential ischemia-reperfusion injury associated with the extreme breath-holds of elephant seals. We suggest the elephant seal represents an ideal model for understanding the potential cytoprotective effects, mechanisms of action and evolutionary adaptation associated with chronically elevated concentrations of endogenously produced CO. © 2014. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  16. 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

  17. New elephant crisis in Asia-Early warning signs from Myanmar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sampson, Christie; McEvoy, John; Oo, Zaw Min; Chit, Aung Myo; Chan, Aung Nyein; Tonkyn, David; Soe, Paing; Songer, Melissa; Williams, A Christy; Reisinger, Klaus; Wittemyer, George; Leimgruber, Peter

    2018-01-01

    In the southern Bago Yoma mountain range in Myanmar, Asian elephants are being killed at a disturbing rate. This emerging crisis was identified initially through a telemetry study when 7 of 19 of collared elephants were poached within a year of being fitted with a satellite-GPS collar. Subsequent follow up of ground teams confirmed the human caused death or disappearance of at least 19 elephants, including the seven collared individuals, within a 35 km2 area in less than two years. The carcasses of 40 additional elephants were found in areas located across south-central Myanmar once systematic surveys began by our team and collaborators. In addition to the extreme rate of loss, this study documents the targeting of elephants for their skin instead of the more common ivory, an increasing trend in Myanmar. Intensive research programs focused on other conservation problems identified this issue and are now encouraging local authorities to prioritize anti-poaching efforts and improve conservation policies within the country. Myanmar represents one of the last remaining countries in Asia with substantial wildlands suitable for elephants. Increasing rates of human-elephant conflict and poaching events in this country pose a dire threat to the global population.

  18. New elephant crisis in Asia-Early warning signs from Myanmar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christie Sampson

    Full Text Available In the southern Bago Yoma mountain range in Myanmar, Asian elephants are being killed at a disturbing rate. This emerging crisis was identified initially through a telemetry study when 7 of 19 of collared elephants were poached within a year of being fitted with a satellite-GPS collar. Subsequent follow up of ground teams confirmed the human caused death or disappearance of at least 19 elephants, including the seven collared individuals, within a 35 km2 area in less than two years. The carcasses of 40 additional elephants were found in areas located across south-central Myanmar once systematic surveys began by our team and collaborators. In addition to the extreme rate of loss, this study documents the targeting of elephants for their skin instead of the more common ivory, an increasing trend in Myanmar. Intensive research programs focused on other conservation problems identified this issue and are now encouraging local authorities to prioritize anti-poaching efforts and improve conservation policies within the country. Myanmar represents one of the last remaining countries in Asia with substantial wildlands suitable for elephants. Increasing rates of human-elephant conflict and poaching events in this country pose a dire threat to the global population.

  19. Taxonomy Icon Data: African savanna elephant [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available African savanna elephant Loxodonta africana Chordata/Vertebrata/Mammalia/Theria/Eutheria/etc. Loxodonta_afri...cana_L.png Loxodonta_africana_NL.png Loxodonta_africana_S.png Loxodonta_africana_NS....png http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+africana&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonom...y_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+africana&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+afric...ana&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+africana&t=NS ...

  20. 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.

  1. Touraine Solente Gole syndrome: The elephant skin disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. M. Sheeja Rajan

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Touraine Solente Gole syndrome is a rare hereditary syndrome of primary pachydermoperiostosis, with the characteristic triad of pachydermia (or elephant like skin, periostosis and acropachia. A 27-year-old patient presented with aesthetic deformity of forehead due to deep skin folds and coarsening of facial features due to progressive thickening of skin. Associated palmoplantar hyperkeratosis with broadened of finger and toe tips and digital clubbing were noticed. Dermatologic evaluation revealed cutis verticis gyrata of scalp, seborrhoeic hyperplasia of face and hyperhidrosis. Natural history of the disease and aetiopathogenesis were reviewed. Aesthetic correction of forehead through frontal rhytidectomy was attempted.

  2. Serosurveillance for pandemic influenza A (H1N1 2009 virus infection in domestic elephants, Thailand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weena Paungpin

    Full Text Available The present study conducted serosurveillance for the presence of antibody to pandemic influenza A (H1N1 2009 virus (H1N1pdm virus in archival serum samples collected between 2009 and 2013 from 317 domestic elephants living in 19 provinces situated in various parts of Thailand. To obtain the most accurate data, hemagglutination-inhibition (HI assay was employed as the screening test; and sera with HI antibody titers ≥20 were further confirmed by other methods, including cytopathic effect/hemagglutination based-microneutralization (microNT and Western blot (WB assays using H1N1pdm matrix 1 (M1 or hemagglutinin (HA recombinant protein as the test antigen. Conclusively, the appropriate assays using HI in conjunction with WB assays for HA antibody revealed an overall seropositive rate of 8.5% (27 of 317. The prevalence of antibody to H1N1pdm virus was 2% (4/172 in 2009, 32% (17/53 in 2010, 9% (2/22 in 2011, 12% (1/8 in 2012, and 5% (3/62 in 2013. Notably, these positive serum samples were collected from elephants living in 7 tourist provinces of Thailand. The highest seropositive rate was obtained from elephants in Phuket, a popular tourist beach city. Young elephants had higher seropositive rate than older elephants. The source of H1N1pdm viral infection in these elephants was not explored, but most likely came from close contact with the infected mahouts or from the infected tourists who engaged in activities such as elephant riding and feeding. Nevertheless, it could not be excluded that elephant-to-elephant transmission did occur.

  3. Understanding long-term variations in an elephant piosphere effect to manage impacts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marietjie Landman

    Full Text Available Surface water availability is a key driver of elephant impacts on biological diversity. Thus, understanding the spatio-temporal variations of these impacts in relation to water is critical to their management. However, elephant piosphere effects (i.e. the radial pattern of attenuating impact are poorly described, with few long-term quantitative studies. Our understanding is further confounded by the complexity of systems with elephant (i.e. fenced, multiple water points, seasonal water availability, varying population densities that likely limit the use of conceptual models to predict these impacts. Using 31 years of data on shrub structure in the succulent thickets of the Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa, we tested elephant effects at a single water point. Shrub structure showed a clear sigmoid response with distance from water, declining at both the upper and lower limits of sampling. Adjacent to water, this decline caused a roughly 300-m radial expansion of the grass-dominated habitats that replace shrub communities. Despite the clear relationship between shrub structure and ecological functioning in thicket, the extent of elephant effects varied between these features with distance from water. Moreover, these patterns co-varied with other confounding variables (e.g. the location of neighboring water points, which limits our ability to predict such effects in the absence of long-term data. We predict that elephant have the ability to cause severe transformation in succulent thicket habitats with abundant water supply and elevated elephant numbers. However, these piosphere effects are complex, suggesting that a more integrated understanding of elephant impacts on ecological heterogeneity may be required before water availability is used as a tool to manage impacts. We caution against the establishment of water points in novel succulent thicket habitats, and advocate a significant reduction in water provisioning at our study site

  4. Understanding long-term variations in an elephant piosphere effect to manage impacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landman, Marietjie; Schoeman, David S; Hall-Martin, Anthony J; Kerley, Graham I H

    2012-01-01

    Surface water availability is a key driver of elephant impacts on biological diversity. Thus, understanding the spatio-temporal variations of these impacts in relation to water is critical to their management. However, elephant piosphere effects (i.e. the radial pattern of attenuating impact) are poorly described, with few long-term quantitative studies. Our understanding is further confounded by the complexity of systems with elephant (i.e. fenced, multiple water points, seasonal water availability, varying population densities) that likely limit the use of conceptual models to predict these impacts. Using 31 years of data on shrub structure in the succulent thickets of the Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa, we tested elephant effects at a single water point. Shrub structure showed a clear sigmoid response with distance from water, declining at both the upper and lower limits of sampling. Adjacent to water, this decline caused a roughly 300-m radial expansion of the grass-dominated habitats that replace shrub communities. Despite the clear relationship between shrub structure and ecological functioning in thicket, the extent of elephant effects varied between these features with distance from water. Moreover, these patterns co-varied with other confounding variables (e.g. the location of neighboring water points), which limits our ability to predict such effects in the absence of long-term data. We predict that elephant have the ability to cause severe transformation in succulent thicket habitats with abundant water supply and elevated elephant numbers. However, these piosphere effects are complex, suggesting that a more integrated understanding of elephant impacts on ecological heterogeneity may be required before water availability is used as a tool to manage impacts. We caution against the establishment of water points in novel succulent thicket habitats, and advocate a significant reduction in water provisioning at our study site, albeit with greater

  5. Beehive fences as a multidimensional conflict-mitigation tool for farmers coexisting with elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Lucy E; Lala, Fredrick; Nzumu, Hesron; Mwambingu, Emmanuel; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2017-08-01

    Increasing habitat fragmentation and human population growth in Africa has resulted in an escalation in human-elephant conflict between small-scale farmers and free-ranging African elephants (Loxodonta Africana). In 2012 Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) implemented the national 10-year Conservation and Management Strategy for the Elephant in Kenya, which includes an action aimed at testing whether beehive fences can be used to mitigate human-elephant conflict. From 2012 to 2015, we field-tested the efficacy of beehive fences to protect 10 0.4-ha farms next to Tsavo East National Park from elephants. We hung a series of beehives every 10 m around the boundary of each farm plot. The hives were linked with strong wire. After an initial pilot test with 2 farms, the remaining 8 of 10 beehive fences also contained 2-dimensional dummy hives between real beehives to help reduce the cost of the fence. Each trial plot had a neighboring control plot of the same size within the same farm. Of the 131 beehives deployed 88% were occupied at least once during the 3.5-year trial. Two hundred and fifty-three elephants, predominantly 20-45 years old entered the community farming area, typically during the crop- ripening season. Eighty percent of the elephants that approached the trial farms were kept out of the areas protected by the beehive fences, and elephants that broke a fence were in smaller than average groups. Beehive fences not only kept large groups of elephants from invading the farmland plots but the farmers also benefited socially and financially from the sale of 228 kg of elephant-friendly honey. As news of the success of the trial spread, a further 12 farmers requested to join the project, bringing the number of beehive fence protected farms to 22 and beehives to 297. This demonstrates positive adoption of beehive fences as a community mitigation tool. Understanding the response of elephants to the beehive fences, the seasonality of crop raiding and fence breaking, and the

  6. [Intravascular Hemolysis Caused by Stenosis of an Elephant Trunk;Report of a Case].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takamaru, Rikako; Kawahito, Koji; Aizawa, Kei; Misawa, Yoshio

    2017-07-01

    Symptomatic intravascular hemolysis after prosthetic aortic graft replacement is rare. It is primarily attributed to mechanical injury of red blood cells caused by stenosis of the vascular graft. A 50-year-old man presented with hemolytic anemia, 5 years after total arch replacement with an elephant trunk for type A aortic dissection. The hemolysis was caused by graft stenosis of the elephant trunk. Endovascular treatment for the stenotic elephant trunk was successfully performed. The postoperative course was uneventful, and the hemolysis was resolved immediately after operation.

  7. 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. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  8. Well-Being Impacts of Human-Elephant Conflict in Khumaga, Botswana: Exploring Visible and Hidden Dimensions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allison L Mayberry

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available High densities of wild African savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana combined with widespread human land-use have increased human-elephant conflict in northern Botswana. Visible impacts (e.g. crop/property damage, injury/fatality of elephants on human well-being are well documented in scholarly literature while hidden impacts (e.g. emotional stress, restricted mobility are less so. This research uses qualitative methods to explore human experiences with elephants and perceived impacts of elephants on human well-being. Findings reveal participants are concerned about food insecurity and associated visible impacts of elephant crop raids. Findings also reveal participants are concerned about reduced safety and restricted mobility as hidden impacts threatening livelihoods and everyday life. Both visible and hidden impacts of elephants contribute to people's negative feelings towards elephants, as does the broader political context. This research emphasises the importance of investigating both visible and hidden impacts of elephants on human well-being to foster holistic understanding of human-elephant conflict scenarios and to inform future mitigation strategies.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Estimating population sizes for elusive animals: the forest elephants of Kakum National Park, Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eggert, L S; Eggert, J A; Woodruff, D S

    2003-06-01

    African forest elephants are difficult to observe in the dense vegetation, and previous studies have relied upon indirect methods to estimate population sizes. Using multilocus genotyping of noninvasively collected samples, we performed a genetic survey of the forest elephant population at Kakum National Park, Ghana. We estimated population size, sex ratio and genetic variability from our data, then combined this information with field observations to divide the population into age groups. Our population size estimate was very close to that obtained using dung counts, the most commonly used indirect method of estimating the population sizes of forest elephant populations. As their habitat is fragmented by expanding human populations, management will be increasingly important to the persistence of forest elephant populations. The data that can be obtained from noninvasively collected samples will help managers plan for the conservation of this keystone species.

  12. 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

  13. Blood Volume and Other Hematologic Values in Young Elephant Seals (Mirounga angustirostris)

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Simpson, John G; Gilmartin, William G; Ridgway, Sam H

    1970-01-01

    ... (Mirounga angustirostris) by a method that could be accurate to 2 percent. The blood volumes of 7 young northern elephant seals were analyzed using a dilution of radioactive iodinated human serum albumin...

  14. Generation and Analysis of Full-length cDNA Sequences from Elephant Shark (Callorhinchus milii)

    KAUST Repository

    Kodzius, Rimantas; Tay, Boon-Hui; Tan, Yue Ying; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2009-01-01

    Cartilaginous fishes are the oldest living group of jawed vertebrates and therefore is an important group for understanding the evolution of vertebrate genomes including the human genome. Our laboratory has proposed elephant shark (C. milii) as a

  15. Effect of supplementing crossbt·ed lactating dairy cows fed elephant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Effect of supplementing lactating c.rosshrcd dairy cows fed on elephant grass based diets with labjab hay ... causes a reduction in overall digestibility of herbage dry matter. ..... Selected Topics in animal. Nutrition. ... Working paper No. 99:pp.

  16. Where sociality and relatedness diverge: the genetic basis for hierarchical social organization in African elephants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wittemyer, George; Okello, John B. A.; Rasmussen, Henrik B.

    2009-01-01

    Hierarchical properties characterize elephant fission-fusion social organization whereby stable groups of individuals coalesce into higher order groups or split in a predictable manner. This hierarchical complexity is rare among animals and, as such, an examination of the factors driving its......-tier level bonds, indicating the importance of direct benefits in the emergence of complex, hierarchical social relations among elephants. Future directions and conservation implications are discussed....

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Meiosis in elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum), pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum) (Poaceae, Poales) and their interspecific hybrids

    OpenAIRE

    Techio, Vânia Helena; Davide, Lisete Chamma; Pereira, Antônio Vander

    2006-01-01

    The cultivated and sexually compatible species Pennisetum purpureum (elephant grass, 2n = 4x = 28) and Pennisetum glaucum (pearl millet, 2n = 2x = 14) can undergo hybridization which favors the amplification of their genetic background and the introgression of favorable alleles into breeding programs. The main problem with interspecific hybrids of these species is infertility due to triploidy (2n = 3x = 21). This study describes meiosis in elephant grass x pearl millet hybrids and their proge...

  20. 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

  1. 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%.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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. 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%; pyear 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.

  4. 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

  5. Molecular Indicators of Chronic Stress in a Model Pinniped - The Northern Elephant Seal

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    Pinniped - The Northern Elephant Seal Cory Champagne , Jane Kyudyakov, & Dorian Houser National Marine Mammal Foundation 2240 Shelter Island Dr, Suite...in studies of stress and its impacts ( Champagne et al, 2012). Measurements will be conducted in juvenile elephant seals that reliably haul out each...their large adipose stores) and a reduced amino acid release (potentially resulting from a protein sparing adaptation during fasting; Champagne et

  6. 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.

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

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    Devcharan Jathanna

    Full Text Available 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

  8. Optimal graft diameter and location reduce postoperative complications after total arch replacement with long elephant trunk for arch aneurysm.

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    Kondoh, Haruhiko; Funatsu, Toshihiro; Toda, Koich; Kainuma, Satoshi; Kuki, Satoru; Taniguchi, Kazuhiro

    2011-08-01

    Total arch replacement with an elephant trunk is a standard treatment for arch aneurysm, but serious complications, such as paraplegia and peripheral embolization caused by flapping of the elephant trunk, remain. Moreover, dilation of the descending aorta and retrograde flow into the peri-graft space at the distal elephant trunk are frequent problems. We hypothesized that optimal graft diameter and location would reduce complications after total arch replacement with a long elephant trunk by achieving complete thrombosis and minimal dilation of the descending aorta around the elephant trunk. We treated 65 patients with arch aneurysm by total arch replacement with a long elephant trunk anastomosed at the base of the innominate artery. The graft diameter was undersized (10%-20% of the distal aorta's diameter). Elephant trunk length was determined by preoperative computed tomography to locate the distal end at Th6 to Th8. Thrombosis around the elephant trunk, diameter of the descending aorta, and distance between the descending aorta and the graft near the distal end of the elephant trunk were evaluated using computed tomography. The distal end of the elephant trunk was located at Th 8 ± 1. There were no operative deaths, 3 patients (5%) died in the hospital, and 3 patients (5%) experienced spinal cord injury, including 1 in whom permanent paraplegia developed. Computed tomography revealed complete thrombosis around the elephant trunk in 58 patients (89%). The descending aorta did not dilate further, and distance between the descending aorta and the graft progressively decreased. Optimal graft diameter and location minimized postoperative complications, with complete thrombosis and no dilation of the descending aorta around the long elephant trunk in most patients. Copyright © 2011 The American Association for Thoracic Surgery. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

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

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    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. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

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    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.

  11. Elephants (and extinct relatives) as earth-movers and ecosystem engineers

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    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.

  12. Runx family genes in a cartilaginous fish, the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii.

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    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.

  13. VITAL SIGNS AND FIRST OCCURRENCES IN NORMAL AND ABNORMAL NEWBORN ASIAN ELEPHANT ( ELEPHAS MAXIMUS) CALVES.

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    Wiedner, Ellen; Kiso, Wendy K; Aria, Janice; Isaza, Ramiro; Lindsay, William; Jacobson, Gary; Jacobson, Kathy; Schmitt, Dennis

    2017-12-01

    Sixteen years of medical records documenting 19 births within a herd of Asian elephants ( Elephas maximus) at a private facility in the southeastern United States were reviewed. Of the 19 calves, 11 were normal at birth, requiring no additional veterinary care, and eight were abnormal, requiring veterinary care immediately or within the first week of birth. Descriptive statistics were used to evaluate morphometrics, vital signs, and behavioral milestones in newborn calves both normal and abnormal. Blood work and urinalysis results from all calves were compared to values for adult elephants. Medical management of abnormal calves is described. All calves had faster heart rates and respiratory rates than did adult elephants, but rectal temperatures were the same. Calves were precocious with regard to sitting and standing but could be very slow to nurse. The most-common medical conditions of newborn calves were umbilical abnormalities and problems associated with nursing. Two calves required cardiopulmonary resuscitation after birth but made full recoveries. Some conditions were not apparent at birth but were recognized a few hours or days later. Following veterinary intervention, six of the eight calves made full recoveries, suggesting that early identification and treatment of problems can greatly decrease mortality. This is the first report of multiple veterinary and behavioral parameters in normal and abnormal neonatal Asian elephants from a facility with a calf survival rate above 90%. This information may be helpful to other elephant-holding facilities in providing care to their newborn elephant calves.

  14. A survey of elephant husbandry and foot health in North American zoos.

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    Lewis, Karen D; Shepherdson, David J; Owens, Terrah M; Keele, Mike

    2010-01-01

    The foot health of elephants in human care is a longstanding concern. In 2001, the AZA Standards for Elephant Management and Care were published recommending husbandry to improve foot health. This article reports the results of a 2006 survey: basic statistics describing facility, husbandry, and foot health attributes are reported and relationships among variables are investigated. Median area available to elephants exceeded Standard recommendations (755 ft(2) per elephant indoor and 10,000 ft(2) outdoor). Concrete makes up 69% of indoor area and natural substrates account for 85% of outdzoor area. Elephants in AZA facilities received an average of 45.5 min/day of exercise, and facilities with a structured exercise plan provided significantly more exercise than did facilities without a structured exercise plan (z=-2.522, P=0.012). Enrichment is important to psychological health and may also stimulate activity beneficial to foot health; 95% of institutions had a structured enrichment program. Preventative foot care was nearly universal, and 100% of facilities performed routine nail and pad trimming. However, foot pathology has not been eradicated; 33% of institutions reported at least one pathology in the previous year. This study found a strong inverse relationship between foot pathology and exercise (chi(2)(3)=24.34, Pelephants seemed to experience lower rates of foot pathology and arthritis than Asian elephants; however, this was explained by differences in age.

  15. Conflict between conservation and development: cash forest encroachment in Asian elephant distributions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Peng; Wen, Hui; Harich, Franziska K; He, Changhuan; Wang, Lanxin; Guo, Xianming; Zhao, Jianwei; Luo, Aidong; Yang, Hongpei; Sun, Xiao; Yu, Yang; Zheng, Shaobo; Guo, Jing; Li, Li; Zhang, Li

    2017-08-03

    Over the last 4 decades, China has undergone major economic development, resulting in considerable impacts on its wildlife populations and habitats. It is essential to quantify the conflict between development and conservation to assist with policy-making because forestry policies and market trends affected indirectly the distribution of Asian elephants. Here, we mapped the historical distribution of elephants versus human land use. Elephant distributions appear to occur in unbroken natural forests only. However, over the 40-year period, the distribution ranges have become smaller and fragmented, with natural forest area also declining by 16%. The monoculture of cash trees is encroaching on natural forests. Over the past 10 years, rubber plantations have become concentrated in the south, with extensive natural forests and scattered rubber farms being converted to tea plantations, due to changes in governmental policies and product prices. Through mapping the spatial changes in the distribution of rubber and tea plantations, our study is expected to help local managers to incorporate the needs of endangered elephants through creating space when planning plantations, especially in Xishuangbanna and the south part of Pu'er. In conclusion, restoring elephant habitat and establishing ecological corridors are critical for the survival of elephants in this region.

  16. Small mammals of the Addo Elephant National Park

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    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.

  17. Combining ability of elephant grass based on nutritional characters

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    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.

  18. Suspected seminal vesiculitis in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilburn, Jennifer J; Velguth, Karen E; Backues, Kay A

    2011-09-01

    A 32-year-old male Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) underwent routine transrectal stimulation for semen collection as part of an artificial insemination program. The procedure consisted of a preinsemination semen collection followed by two consecutive days of semen collections for artificial insemination. The second day's sample contained large numbers of inflammatory cells, intracellular bacteria, and phagocytized sperm. Semen was submitted for culture and sensitivity. Culture revealed Acinetobacter lwoffii, Staphylococcus intermedius, Kocuria roseus, and an unidentified gram-positive organism. Empirical antibiotic therapy with trimethoprim sulfa was initiated and then changed to enrofloxacin based on sensitivity panel results for a total of 28 days of treatment. Diagnostic semen collections were performed during treatment and 2 wk posttreatment to determine the success of therapy. Posttreatment collections revealed resolution of the inflammation. The origin of the infection was suspected to be the seminal vesicles.

  19. Age structure of elephants in Liwonde National Park, Malawi

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    R. Bhima

    1997-08-01

    Full Text Available The age structure of the elephant population in Liwonde National Park, Malawi was determined for the first time in 1993 and again in 1995 using the photogrammetric method. Sampling was done during a four year-long severe drought from 1991/92 to 1994/95. The drought reached its highest intensity in the first year. Therefore, the study also attempted to assess the impact of the drought on the population. The results show that the population consisted of mostly young animals 20 years old - 18.3 and 20.5 . The population is young and growing. The prolonged drought did not have any significant impact on the population.

  20. Performance of rotary kiln reactor for the elephant grass pyrolysis.

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    De Conto, D; Silvestre, W P; Baldasso, C; Godinho, M

    2016-10-01

    The influence of process conditions (rotary speed/temperature) on the performance of a rotary kiln reactor for non-catalytic pyrolysis of a perennial grass (elephant grass) was investigated. The product yields, the production of non-condensable gases as well as the biochar properties were evaluated. The maximum H2 yield was close to that observed for catalytic pyrolysis processes, while the bio-oil yield was higher than reported for pyrolysis of other biomass in rotary kiln reactors. A H2/CO ratio suitable for Fischer-Tropsch synthesis (FTS) was obtained. The biochars presented an alkaline pH (above 10) and interesting contents of nutrients, as well as low electrical conductivity, indicating a high potential as soil amendment. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Phylogeography of the asian elephant (Elephas maximus) based on mitochondrial DNA.

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    Fleischer, R C; Perry, E A; Muralidharan, K; Stevens, E E; Wemmer, C M

    2001-09-01

    Populations of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) have been reduced in size and become highly fragmented during the past 3,000 to 4,000 years. Historical records reveal elephant dispersal by humans via trade and war. How have these anthropogenic impacts affected genetic variation and structure of Asian elephant populations? We sequenced mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to assay genetic variation and phylogeography across much of the Asian elephant's range. Initially we compare cytochrome b sequences (cyt b) between nine Asian and five African elephants and use the fossil-based age of their separation (approximately 5 million years ago) to obtain a rate of about 0.013 (95% CI = 0.011-0.018) corrected sequence divergence per million years. We also assess variation in part of the mtDNA control region (CR) and adjacent tRNA genes in 57 Asian elephants from seven countries (Sri Lanka, India, Nepal, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia). Asian elephants have typical levels of mtDNA variation, and coalescence analyses suggest their populations were growing in the late Pleistocene. Reconstructed phylogenies reveal two major clades (A and B) differing on average by HKY85/gamma-corrected distances of 0.020 for cyt b and 0.050 for the CR segment (corresponding to a coalescence time based on our cyt b rate of approximately 1.2 million years). Individuals of both major clades exist in all locations but Indonesia and Malaysia. Most elephants from Malaysia and all from Indonesia are in well-supported, basal clades within clade A. thus supporting their status as evolutionarily significant units (ESUs). The proportion of clade A individuals decreases to the north, which could result from retention and subsequent loss of ancient lineages in long-term stable populations or, perhaps more likely, via recent mixing of two expanding populations that were isolated in the mid-Pleistocene. The distribution of clade A individuals appears to have been impacted by human trade in elephants

  2. Establishing the fundamentals for an elephant early warning and monitoring system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeppelzauer, Matthias; Stoeger, Angela S

    2015-09-04

    The decline of habitat for elephants due to expanding human activity is a serious conservation problem. This has continuously escalated the human-elephant conflict in Africa and Asia. Elephants make extensive use of powerful infrasonic calls (rumbles) that travel distances of up to several kilometers. This makes elephants well-suited for acoustic monitoring because it enables detecting elephants even if they are out of sight. In sight, their distinct visual appearance makes them a good candidate for visual monitoring. We provide an integrated overview of our interdisciplinary project that established the scientific fundamentals for a future early warning and monitoring system for humans who regularly experience serious conflict with elephants. We first draw the big picture of an early warning and monitoring system, then review the developed solutions for automatic acoustic and visual detection, discuss specific challenges and present open future work necessary to build a robust and reliable early warning and monitoring system that is able to operate in situ. We present a method for the automated detection of elephant rumbles that is robust to the diverse noise sources present in situ. We evaluated the method on an extensive set of audio data recorded under natural field conditions. Results show that the proposed method outperforms existing approaches and accurately detects elephant rumbles. Our visual detection method shows that tracking elephants in wildlife videos (of different sizes and postures) is feasible and particularly robust at near distances. From our project results we draw a number of conclusions that are discussed and summarized. We clearly identified the most critical challenges and necessary improvements of the proposed detection methods and conclude that our findings have the potential to form the basis for a future automated early warning system for elephants. We discuss challenges that need to be solved and summarize open topics in the context of

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. © 2011 The Author(s)

  4. Stress and body condition are associated with climate and demography in Asian elephants.

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    Mumby, Hannah S; Mar, Khyne U; Thitaram, Chatchote; Courtiol, Alexandre; Towiboon, Patcharapa; Min-Oo, Zaw; Htut-Aung, Ye; Brown, Janine L; Lummaa, Virpi

    2015-01-01

    Establishing links between ecological variation, physiological markers of stress and demography is crucial for understanding how and why changes in environmental conditions affect population dynamics, and may also play a key role for conservation efforts of endangered species. However, detailed longitudinal studies of long-lived species are rarely available. We test how two markers of stress and body condition vary through the year and are associated with climatic conditions and large-scale mortality and fertility variation in the world's largest semi-captive population of Asian elephants employed in the timber industry in Myanmar. Glucocorticoid metabolites (used as a proxy for stress levels in 75 elephants) and body weight (used as a proxy for condition in 116 elephants) were monitored monthly across a typical monsoon cycle and compared with birth and death patterns of the entire elephant population over half a century (n = 2350). Our results show seasonal variation in both markers of stress and condition. In addition, this variation is correlated with population-level demographic variables. Weight is inversely correlated with population mortality rates 1 month later, and glucocorticoid metabolites are negatively associated with birth rates. Weight shows a highly positive correlation with rainfall 1 month earlier. Determining the factors associated with demography may be key to species conservation by providing information about the correlates of mortality and fertility patterns. The unsustainability of the studied captive population has meant that wild elephants have been captured and tamed for work. By elucidating the correlates of demography in captive elephants, our results offer management solutions that could reduce the pressure on the wild elephant population in Myanmar.

  5. Elephant movement closely tracks precipitation-driven vegetation dynamics in a Kenyan forest-savanna landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohrer, Gil; Beck, Pieter Sa; Ngene, Shadrack M; Skidmore, Andrew K; Douglas-Hamilton, Ian

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates the ranging behavior of elephants in relation to precipitation-driven dynamics of vegetation. Movement data were acquired for five bachelors and five female family herds during three years in the Marsabit protected area in Kenya and changes in vegetation were mapped using MODIS normalized difference vegetation index time series (NDVI). In the study area, elevations of 650 to 1100 m.a.s.l experience two growth periods per year, while above 1100 m.a.s.l. growth periods last a year or longer. We find that elephants respond quickly to changes in forage and water availability, making migrations in response to both large and small rainfall events. The elevational migration of individual elephants closely matched the patterns of greening and senescing of vegetation in their home range. Elephants occupied lower elevations when vegetation activity was high, whereas they retreated to the evergreen forest at higher elevations while vegetation senesced. Elephant home ranges decreased in size, and overlapped less with increasing elevation. A recent hypothesis that ungulate migrations in savannas result from countervailing seasonally driven rainfall and fertility gradients is demonstrated, and extended to shorter-distance migrations. In other words, the trade-off between the poor forage quality and accessibility in the forest with its year-round water sources on the one hand and the higher quality forage in the low-elevation scrubland with its seasonal availability of water on the other hand, drives the relatively short migrations (the two main corridors are 20 and 90 km) of the elephants. In addition, increased intra-specific competition appears to influence the animals' habitat use during the dry season indicating that the human encroachment on the forest is affecting the elephant population.

  6. Detection of pathogenic elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus in routine trunk washes from healthy adult Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) by use of a real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanton, Jeffrey J.; Zong, Jian-Chao; Latimer, Erin; Tan, Jie; Herron, Alan; Hayward, Gary S.; Ling, Paul D.

    2013-01-01

    Objective To investigate the pathogenesis and transmission of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV1) by analyzing various elephant fluid samples with a novel EEHV1-specific real-time PCR assay. Animals 5 apparently healthy captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) from the same herd. Procedures A real-time PCR assay was developed that specifically detects EEHV1. The assay was used to evaluate paired whole blood and trunk-wash samples obtained from the 5 elephants during a 15-week period. Deoxyribonucleic acid sequencing and viral gene subtyping analysis were performed on trunk-wash DNA preparations that had positive results for EEHV1. Viral gene subtypes were compared with those associated with past fatal cases of herpesvirus-associated disease within the herd. Results The PCR assay detected viral DNA to a level of 1,200 copies/mL of whole blood. It was used to detect EEHV1 in trunk secretions of 3 of the 5 elephants surveyed during the 15-week period. Viral gene subtyping analysis identified 2 distinct elephant herpesviruses, 1 of which was identical to the virus associated with a previous fatal case of herpesvirus-associated disease within the herd. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance EEHV1 was shed in the trunk secretions of healthy Asian elephants. Trunk secretions may provide a mode of transmission for this virus. Results of this study may be useful for the diagnosis, treatment, and management of EEHV1-associated disease and the overall management of captive elephant populations. PMID:20673092

  7. Surviving and fatal Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus-1A infections in juvenile Asian elephants - lessons learned and recommendations on anti-herpesviral therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-08-27

    Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesviruses (EEHVs) can cause acute haemorrhagic disease in young Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and clinical EEHV infections account for the majority of their fatalities. The anti-herpesviral drug famciclovir (FCV) has been used routinely to treat viraemic at-risk elephants, but thus far without proven efficacy. This paper presents clinical and virological investigations of two EEHV-1A infected elephants treated with FCV, and discusses anti-herpesvirus therapies of viraemic elephants. Two 1.5 year old male Asian elephants at a zoological collection in the UK developed clinical EEHV-1A infections. Case 1 showed signs of myalgia for the duration of 24 hours before returning back to normal. EEHV-1A DNAemia was confirmed on the day of clinical signs and continued to be present for 18 days in total. Trunk shedding of the virus commenced 10 days after detection of initial DNAemia. Case 2 tested positive for EEHV-1A DNAemia in a routine blood screening sample in the absence of clinical signs. The blood viral load increased exponentially leading up to fatal clinical disease seven days after initial detection of DNAemia. Both calves were treated with 15 mg/kg FCV per rectum on detection of DNAemia and penciclovir, the FCV metabolite, could be detected in the blood at assumed therapeutic levels. The early indicators for clinical disease were a marked absolute and relative drop in white blood cells, particularly monocytes prior to the detection of viraemia. The most prognostic haematological parameter at later stages of the disease was the platelet count showing a continuous sharp decline throughout, followed by a dramatic drop at the time of death. The EEHV-1A viraemic animals investigated here further highlight the ongoing threat posed by these viruses to juvenile Asian elephants. The findings call into question the efficacy of rectal FCV in clinical cases and direct towards the use of alternative anti-herpesvirus drugs and complementary

  8. Survey of Forest Elephants Loxodonta cyclotis (Matschie, 1900 (Mammalia: Proboscidea: Elephantidae in the Bia Conservation Area, Ghana

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    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.

  9. 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.

  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. 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. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. 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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Information content and acoustic structure of male African elephant social rumbles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoeger, Angela S; Baotic, Anton

    2016-06-08

    Until recently, the prevailing theory about male African elephants (Loxodonta africana) was that, once adult and sexually mature, males are solitary and targeted only at finding estrous females. While this is true during the state of 'musth' (a condition characterized by aggressive behavior and elevated androgen levels), 'non-musth' males exhibit a social system seemingly based on companionship, dominance and established hierarchies. Research on elephant vocal communication has so far focused on females, and very little is known about the acoustic structure and the information content of male vocalizations. Using the source and filter theory approach, we analyzed social rumbles of 10 male African elephants. Our results reveal that male rumbles encode information about individuality and maturity (age and size), with formant frequencies and absolute fundamental frequency values having the most informative power. This first comprehensive study on male elephant vocalizations gives important indications on their potential functional relevance for male-male and male-female communication. Our results suggest that, similar to the highly social females, future research on male elephant vocal behavior will reveal a complex communication system in which social knowledge, companionship, hierarchy, reproductive competition and the need to communicate over long distances play key roles.

  14. Climate change and the northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris population in Baja California, Mexico.

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    María C García-Aguilar

    Full Text Available The Earth's climate is warming, especially in the mid- and high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. The northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris breeds and haul-outs on islands and the mainland of Baja California, Mexico, and California, U.S.A. At the beginning of the 21st century, numbers of elephant seals in California are increasing, but the status of Baja California populations is unknown, and some data suggest they may be decreasing. We hypothesize that the elephant seal population of Baja California is experiencing a decline because the animals are not migrating as far south due to warming sea and air temperatures. Here we assessed population trends of the Baja California population, and climate change in the region. The numbers of northern elephant seals in Baja California colonies have been decreasing since the 1990s, and both the surface waters off Baja California and the local air temperatures have warmed during the last three decades. We propose that declining population sizes may be attributable to decreased migration towards the southern portions of the range in response to the observed temperature increases. Further research is needed to confirm our hypothesis; however, if true, it would imply that elephant seal colonies of Baja California and California are not demographically isolated which would pose challenges to environmental and management policies between Mexico and the United States.

  15. 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.

  16. Dynamics of forage accumulation in Elephant grass subjected to rotational grazing intensities

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    Braulio Maia de Lana Sousa

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available We assessed the accumulation dynamics of forage and its components in Elephant grass cv. Napier (Pennisetum purpureum Schum. that were subjected to three post-grazing height treatments (30, 50, and 70 cm from February through May 2009 (experiment one and December 2009 through May 2010 (experiment two. In experiment one, the grazing events started when the light interception by the canopy reached 95%. The same was adopted for experiment two, except for the first grazing event, which was based on the height of the apical meristems of basal tillers. The experimental design for both experiments was a randomized complete block with three replications. The pastures that were managed at a post-grazing height of 30 cm exhibited lower rates of leaf and stem growth, total growth and forage accumulation than those that were managed at 50 or 70 cm, indicating that post-grazing height affects Elephant grass. The pastures that were managed at 50 cm exhibited relatively stable accumulation rates and less stem accumulation. Pastures managed at 70 cm of pos-grazing height presented more leaf and stem accumulation. Most apical meristems of Elephant grass should be removed in the first grazing when they reach the post-grazing target height of 50 cm. The elevation in the residual post-grazing height, especially in the summer, raises the regrowth vigor in the Elephant grass cv. Napier pasture. The post-grazing height of 30 cm reduces the growth of the Elephant grass cv. Napier.

  17. 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.

  18. Forage mass and stocking rate of elephant grass pastures managed under agroecological and conventional systems

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    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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

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

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    Alan F Humphreys

    Full Text Available 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Elephant trunk in a small-calibre true lumen for chronic aortic dissection: cause of haemolytic anaemia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araki, Haruna; Kitamura, Tadashi; Horai, Tetsuya; Shibata, Ko; Miyaji, Kagami

    2014-12-01

    The elephant trunk technique for aortic dissection is useful for reducing false lumen pressure; however, a folded vascular prosthesis inside the aorta can cause haemolysis. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether an elephant trunk in a small-calibre lumen can cause haemolysis. Inpatient and outpatient records were retrospectively reviewed. Two cases of haemolytic anaemia after aortic surgery using the elephant trunk technique were identified from 2011 to 2013. A 64-year-old man, who underwent graft replacement of the ascending aorta for acute Stanford type A aortic dissection, presented with enlargement of the chronic dissection of the descending aorta and moderate aortic regurgitation. A two-stage surgery was scheduled. Total arch replacement with an elephant trunk in the true lumen and concomitant aortic valve replacement were performed. Postoperatively, he developed severe haemolytic anaemia because of the folded elephant trunk. The anaemia improved after the second surgery, including graft replacement of the descending aorta. Similarly, a 61-year-old man, who underwent total arch replacement for acute Stanford type A aortic dissection, presented with enlargement of the chronic dissection of the descending aorta. Graft replacement of the descending aorta with an elephant trunk inserted into the true lumen was performed. The patient postoperatively developed haemolytic anaemia because of the folded elephant trunk, which improved after additional stent grafting into the elephant trunk. A folded elephant trunk in a small-calibre lumen can cause haemolysis. Therefore, inserting an elephant trunk in a small-calibre true lumen during surgery for chronic aortic dissection should be avoided. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. All rights reserved.

  5. Tuberculosis at the human-animal interface: an emerging disease of elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikota, Susan K; Maslow, Joel N

    2011-05-01

    Over the past 15 years, cases of infection with organisms of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex have been diagnosed among captive elephants in the United States and worldwide. Outbreak investigations have documented that among staff employed at facilities housing infected animals, skin test conversion to purified protein derivative have been documented. Clonal spread among animals in close contact and even inter-species spread between elephant and human has been documented. Detection of actively infected animals relies on samples obtained by trunk wash. Diagnosis has been augmented by the development of a multi-antigen serologic assay with excellent specificity and sensitivity. Treatment regimens are still in development with efficacy largely unknown due to a paucity of both premortem follow-up and necropsy data of treated animals. The epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment of tuberculosis in elephants require additional careful study of clinical data. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

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    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.

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

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    Ying Chen

    Full Text Available 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.

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

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    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

  9. 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.

  10. Implementing immunocontraception in free-ranging African elephants at Makalali Conservancy

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    A.K. Delsink

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available The goal of programmes to provide contraception for elephants should be to formulate an approach that does not require the relocation or immobilisation of the same individual year after year, which would be long-lasting and cause minimal disruption to social and reproductive behaviour. The programmes should be simple to administer, safe and cost-effective, and must meet the objectives defined by managers in the field. An immunocontraceptive programme was initiated in a small free-roaming population of elephants at the Greater Makalali Private Game Reserve in Limpopo Province in 2000 to determine whether the porcine zona pellucida (pZP vaccine can successfully control population sizes. Further objectives were to determine implementation costs and efficiency through a multi-faceted approach. We have demonstrated that immunocontraception meets the objectives set by managers in the field. Minimal social disruption was observed over the course of treatment, with the mode of delivery (ground or aerial vaccinations determining the degree of stress within herds and speed of resumption of normal movement patterns. Aerial vaccinations resulted in the least disturbance, with target herds being approachable within a day. In 2005, implementation costs were R880-R1000 / elephant / year, inclusive of darts, vaccine, helicopter and veterinary assistance. Irrespective of the source or method of vaccine delivery, a non-pregnant elephant is rendered infertile from 1st vaccine administration. The sooner immunocontraception is implemented, the sooner population growth rates can be controlled. pZP contraception is a realistic alternative management tool, particularly if used as part of a long-termmanagement strategy. Mass-darting from the air eliminates the need for detailed individual histories of each elephant or for employing a person to monitor elephants. Thus, implementation of immunocontraception in larger populations is feasible and practical.

  11. Inferring ecological and behavioral drivers of African elephant movement using a linear filtering approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boettiger, Alistair N; Wittemyer, George; Starfield, Richard; Volrath, Fritz; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Getz, Wayne M

    2011-08-01

    Understanding the environmental factors influencing animal movements is fundamental to theoretical and applied research in the field of movement ecology. Studies relating fine-scale movement paths to spatiotemporally structured landscape data, such as vegetation productivity or human activity, are particularly lacking despite the obvious importance of such information to understanding drivers of animal movement. In part, this may be because few approaches provide the sophistication to characterize the complexity of movement behavior and relate it to diverse, varying environmental stimuli. We overcame this hurdle by applying, for the first time to an ecological question, a finite impulse-response signal-filtering approach to identify human and natural environmental drivers of movements of 13 free-ranging African elephants (Loxodonta africana) from distinct social groups collected over seven years. A minimum mean-square error (MMSE) estimation criterion allowed comparison of the predictive power of landscape and ecological model inputs. We showed that a filter combining vegetation dynamics, human and physical landscape features, and previous movement outperformed simpler filter structures, indicating the importance of both dynamic and static landscape features, as well as habit, on movement decisions taken by elephants. Elephant responses to vegetation productivity indices were not uniform in time or space, indicating that elephant foraging strategies are more complex than simply gravitation toward areas of high productivity. Predictions were most frequently inaccurate outside protected area boundaries near human settlements, suggesting that human activity disrupts typical elephant movement behavior. Successful management strategies at the human-elephant interface, therefore, are likely to be context specific and dynamic. Signal processing provides a promising approach for elucidating environmental factors that drive animal movements over large time and spatial

  12. Is the frozen elephant trunk procedure superior to the conventional elephant trunk procedure for completion of the second stage?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rustum, Saad; Beckmann, Erik; Wilhelmi, Mathias; Krueger, Heike; Kaufeld, Tim; Umminger, Julia; Haverich, Axel; Martens, Andreas; Shrestha, Malakh

    2017-10-01

    Our goal was to compare the results and outcomes of second-stage completion in patients who had previously undergone the elephant trunk (ET) or the frozen elephant trunk (FET) procedure for the treatment of complex aortic arch and descending aortic disease. Between August 2001 and December 2014, 53 patients [mean age 61 ± 13 years, 64% (n = 34) male] underwent a second-stage completion procedure. Of these patients, 32% (n = 17) had a previous ET procedure and 68% (n = 36) a previous FET procedure as a first-stage procedure. The median times to the second-stage procedure were 7 (0-78) months in the ET group and 8 (0-66) months in the FET group. The second-stage procedure included thoracic endovascular aortic repair in 53% (n = 28) of patients and open surgical repair in 47% (n = 25). More endovascular interventions were performed in FET patients (61%, n = 22) than in the ET group (35%, n = 6, P = 0.117). The in-hospital mortality rate was significantly lower in the FET (8%, n = 3) group compared with the ET group (29%, n = 5, P = 0.045). The median follow-up time after the second-stage operation for the entire cohort was 4.6 (0.4-10.4) years. The 5-year survival rate was 76% in the ET patients versus 89% in the FET patients (log-rank: P = 0.11). We observed a significantly lower in-hospital mortality rate in the FET group compared to the ET group. This result might be explained by the higher rate of endovascular completion in the FET group. We assume that the FET procedure offers the benefit of a more ideal landing zone, thus facilitating endovascular completion. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  14. Endovascular Retrieval of Entrapped Elephant Trunk Graft During Complex Hybrid Aortic Arch Repair

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Damodharan, Karthikeyan, E-mail: drdkarthik@hotmail.com [Singapore General Hospital, Department of Diagnostic Radiology (Singapore); Chao, Victor T. T., E-mail: victor.chao.t.t@singhealth.com.sg [National Heart Centre, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery (Singapore); Tay, Kiang Hiong, E-mail: tay.kiang.hiong@singhealth.com.sg [Singapore General Hospital, Department of Diagnostic Radiology (Singapore)

    2016-12-15

    Entrapment of the elephant trunk graft within the false lumen is a rare complication of surgical repair of an aortic dissection. This is normally retrieved by emergent open surgery. We describe a technique of endovascular retrieval of the dislodged graft, during hybrid aortic arch repair. The elephant trunk was cannulated through and through from a femoral access and the free end of the wire was snared and retrieved from a brachial access. The wire was externalised from both accesses and was used to reposition the graft into the true lumen using a body flossing technique.

  15. 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.

  16. A method for determining the extent of thermal burns in elephants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Shakespeare

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available A practical method was developed to assess the extent of burns suffered by elephants caught in bush fires. In developing this method, the surface areas of the different body parts of juvenile, subadult and adult elephants were first determined using standard equations, and then expressed as a percentage of the total body surface area. When viewed from a distance, the burnt proportion of all body segments is estimated, converted to percentages of total body surface area, and then summed to determine the extent of burns suffered.

  17. Endoparasitic infections in free-ranging Asiatic elephants of Mudumalai and Anamalai Wildlife Sanctuary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vimalraj, P G; Jayathangaraj, M G

    2015-09-01

    Free-ranging Asiatic elephants dung samples from various forest divisions of Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary (MWLS) and Anamalai Wildlife Sanctuary (AWLS) were examined for identification of endoparasitic infection. The dung samples revealed 100 % endoparasitic infection, with a high prevalence of Strongyles (64 %) in MWLS and Anoplocephala sp. (46 %) in AWLS. Similarly, from the same samples egg per gram of feces was done to ascertain the individual parasitic load. The present research paper communicates the high parasitic prevalence of free-ranging Asian elephants in dry seasons of (February-June 2010) MWLS and AWLS.

  18. 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. Copyright © 2010 International Society for Infectious Diseases. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. 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

  20. Herbage intake, methane emissions and animal performance of steers grazing dwarf elephant grass v. dwarf elephant grass and peanut pastures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, E A; Almeida, E X; Raupp, G T; Miguel, M F; de Liz, D M; Carvalho, P C F; Bayer, C; Ribeiro-Filho, H M N

    2016-10-01

    Management strategies for increasing ruminant legume consumption and mitigating methane emissions from tropical livestock production systems require further study. The aim of this work was to evaluate the herbage intake, animal performance and enteric methane emissions of cattle grazing dwarf elephant grass (DEG) (Pennisetum purpureum cv. BRS Kurumi) alone or DEG with peanut (Arachis pintoi cv. Amarillo). The experimental treatments were the following: DEG pastures receiving nitrogen fertilization (150 kg N/ha as ammonium nitrate) and DEG intercropped with peanut plus an adjacent area of peanut that was accessible to grazing animals for 5 h/day (from 0700 to 1200 h). The animals grazing legume pastures showed greater average daily gain and herbage intake, and shorter morning and total grazing times. Daily methane emissions were greater from the animals grazing legume pastures, whereas methane emissions per unit of herbage intake did not differ between treatments. Allowing animals access to an exclusive area of legumes in a tropical grass-pasture-based system can improve animal performance without increasing methane production per kg of dry matter intake.

  1. 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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Management Training of Sumatra Elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus and Daily Behavior in Flying Squad WWF Tesso Nilo National Park, Riau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arum Ratnasari

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Flying squad is an established strategy in the effort to resolve the conflict elephants in Tesso Nilo National Park. Flying squad utilizes trainedelephants to chase away wild elephants that come out the national park area. The study aims to identify management training and daily behavior ofSumatran elephant. The study was conducted in the Flying Squad WWF's Tesso Nilo National Park, Riau in March-April 2016 using focal animalsampling and interview. The elephant training curriculum consist of basic training, advanced training and exercise development by combined verbalcommands, visual, and physical. The measured success of training will be seen if the elephants could perform mahout’s commands without any error.Percentage of ingestive behavior showed the highest value at noon, while percentage of shelter seeking and other behavior showed the highest valueat night. It caused the elephants do more displacement to get the food at noon.Keywords: daily behavior, flying squad, focal animal sampling, sumatran elephant, training management

  3. Activity budgets and the relationship between feeding and stereotypic behaviors in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in a Zoo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rees, Paul A

    2009-03-01

    Activity budgets were studied in eight Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) at Chester Zoo (UK) for 35 days, between January and November 1999. Recordings were made between 10:00 and 16:00 hr (with most behavior frequencies calculated between 10:00 and 14:00 hr). The elephants exhibited variation in activity depending on their age, sex, the time of day and the time of year. Only the five adult cows exhibited stereotypic behavior, with frequencies ranging from 3.9 to 29.4% of all observations. These elephants exhibited individual, diurnal and seasonal variation in stereotypic behavior. This has implications for studies that use short sampling periods and may make comparisons of data collected at different times of the day or year invalid. The six adult elephants spent 27.4-41.4% of the time feeding (between 10:00 and 14:00 hr), 22.9-42.0% standing still, 6.1-19.2% walking and 3.9-9.6% dusting. The hypothesis that the frequency of stereotypic behavior in adult cow elephants was negatively correlated with the frequency of feeding behavior was tested and was found to be true. Stereotypic behavior increased in frequency toward the end of the day-while waiting to return to the elephant house for food--and elephants spent more time stereotyping during the winter months than during the summer months. Elephants were inactive (i.e. exhibited behaviors other than locomotion) for between 70.1 and 93.9% of the time. Creating more opportunities for elephants to exhibit foraging behavior and the introduction of greater unpredictability into management regimes, especially feeding times, may reduce the frequency of stereotypic behavior and increase general activity levels.

  4. Chemical purification of Gunungpati elephant foot yam flour to improve physical and chemical quality on processed food

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paramita, Octavianti; Wahyuningsih, Ansori, Muhammad

    2017-03-01

    This study was aimed at improving the physicochemical quality of elephant foot yam flour in Gunungpati, Semarang by chemical purification. The utilization of elephant foot yam flour in several processed food was also discussed in this study. The flour purification discussed in this study was expected to become a reference for the manufacturers of elephant foot yam flour and its processed food in Gunungpati. This study modified the elephant foot yam flour using pre - gelatinization method. The physical and chemical quality of each elephant foot yam flour purification sample were assessed using proximate analysis. The likability test was conducted for its processed food. 20 grams of elephant foot yam flour was put into a beaker glass, then 60 ml of water was added. The suspension was then heated at a temperature of 60 ° C and 70 ° C while stirred until it was homogeneous and thickened for 10, 30 and 60 minutes. The flour which had been heated was then cooled at room temperature for 1 hour and then at a temperature of 0 ° C until it was frozen. Furthermore, flour was dried in an oven at a temperature of 60 ° C for 9 hours. The dried flour was sifted with a 80 mesh sieve. Chemical test was conducted after elephant foot yam was pre-gelatinized to determine changes in the quality flour: test levels of protein, fat, crude fiber content, moisture content, ash content and starch content. In addition, color tests and granular test on elephant foot yam flour were also conducted. The pre-gelatinization as chemical treatment on elephant foot yam flour in this study was able to change the functional properties of elephant foot yam flour towards a better processing characterized by a brighter color (L = 70, a = 6 and b = 12), the hydrolysis of polysaccharides flour into shorter chain (flour content decreased to 44%), the expansion of granules in elephant foot yam resulting in a process - ready flour, and better monolayer water content of 9%. The content of protein and fiber

  5. 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.

  6. Meiosis in elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum, pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (Poaceae, Poales and their interspecific hybrids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vânia Helena Techio

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The cultivated and sexually compatible species Pennisetum purpureum (elephant grass, 2n = 4x = 28 and Pennisetum glaucum (pearl millet, 2n = 2x = 14 can undergo hybridization which favors the amplification of their genetic background and the introgression of favorable alleles into breeding programs. The main problem with interspecific hybrids of these species is infertility due to triploidy (2n = 3x = 21. This study describes meiosis in elephant grass x pearl millet hybrids and their progenitors. Panicles were prepared according to the conventional protocol for meiotic studies and Alexander’s stain was used for assessing pollen viability. Pearl millet accessions presented regular meiosis with seven bivalents and high pollen viability. For elephant grass, 14 bivalents in diakinesis and metaphase I were observed. The BAG 63 elephant grass accession, derived from tissue culture, presented a high frequency of meiotic abnormalities. The three hybrid accessions presented a high frequency of abnormalities characterized by irregular chromosomal segregation which resulted in the formation of sterile pollen.

  7. Refining Asian elephant semen technologies: The need for improved quality analysis and preservation techniques

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wattananit, P.

    2014-01-01

    The ultimate aim of a breeding management programme for captive Asian elephants is to establish a self-sustaining population, while maintaining maximal genetic diversity. In this respect, artificial insemination (AI) is considered a crucial tool for facilitating the exchange of genetic material

  8. Proboscidean mitogenomics: chronology and mode of elephant evolution using mastodon as outgroup.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadin Rohland

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available We have sequenced the complete mitochondrial genome of the extinct American mastodon (Mammut americanum from an Alaskan fossil that is between 50,000 and 130,000 y old, extending the age range of genomic analyses by almost a complete glacial cycle. The sequence we obtained is substantially different from previously reported partial mastodon mitochondrial DNA sequences. By comparing those partial sequences to other proboscidean sequences, we conclude that we have obtained the first sequence of mastodon DNA ever reported. Using the sequence of the mastodon, which diverged 24-28 million years ago (mya from the Elephantidae lineage, as an outgroup, we infer that the ancestors of African elephants diverged from the lineage leading to mammoths and Asian elephants approximately 7.6 mya and that mammoths and Asian elephants diverged approximately 6.7 mya. We also conclude that the nuclear genomes of the African savannah and forest elephants diverged approximately 4.0 mya, supporting the view that these two groups represent different species. Finally, we found the mitochondrial mutation rate of proboscideans to be roughly half of the rate in primates during at least the last 24 million years.

  9. Blood dynamics of mercury and selenium in northern elephant seals during the lactation period

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Habran, Sarah; Debier, Cathy; Crocker, Daniel E.; Houser, Dorian S.; Das, Krishna

    2011-01-01

    The effects of reproduction and maternal investment (i.e., milk transfer) on trace element levels remain poorly understood in marine mammals. We examined the blood dynamics of mercury (Hg) and selenium (Se) during lactation in the northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris), a top predator from the North Pacific Ocean. Total Hg and Se levels were measured in whole blood and milk of 10 mother-pup pairs on days 5 and 22 of lactation. Both Hg and Se were transferred to offspring through the milk. Results suggested that the maternal transfer of Se was prominent during lactation, whereas the Hg transfer was larger during gestation. The lactation period affected Hg and Se levels in the blood of elephant seal mothers and pups. Physiological processes and their relationship to body condition should be considered carefully when interpreting trace element levels in the framework of biomonitoring. - Graphical abstract: Display Omitted Highlights: → The lactation period affects Hg and Se blood levels in elephant seal mothers and pups. → The Hg maternal transfer to offspring is larger during gestation. → The Se maternal transfer to offspring is prominent during lactation via the milk. - Blood levels of total Hg and Se are modified during the 4-week lactating period in northern elephant seals.

  10. Fermentative characteristics and nutritional value of elephant grass silage added with dehydrated banana peel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lara Maria Santos Brant

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate the fermentative losses and nutritional value of elephant grass silages with the increasing of inclusion levels of dehydrated banana peel. The experiment was conducted in a completely randomized design, with six treatments and four replications, being the silage exclusively from elephant grass, and five levels of inclusion of banana peel to the elephant grass silage, as the following - 5; 10; 15; 20 and 25%, being added based on natural matter. The addition of the banana peel in the silage reduced linearly (p < 0.05 the pH, the ammoniacal nitrogen and the losses of the fermentative process. In addition, the inclusion of banana peel increased linearly (p < 0.05 the dry matter and non-fibrous carbohydrates. On the other hand, the neutral detergent fiber and the acid detergent fiber were linearly reduced with the inclusion of the banana peel (p < 0.05, but there was no change in the dry matter digestibility in situ. The inclusion of dehydrated banana peel in elephant grass silage reduces the losses of the fermentation process with more consistent results at the 25% inclusion level, however, it reduces the silage nutritional value due to fibrous and protein quality.

  11. Ontogenetic scaling of fish metabolism in the mouse-to-elephant mass magnitude range

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moran, Damian; Wells, R.M.G.

    2007-01-01

    , and are therefore not statistically comparable. In this study the metabolic rate of yellowtail kingfish was measured from 0.6 mg-2.2 kg, a mass range comparable to that between a mouse and an elephant. Linear regression of the log transformed data resulted in a scaling exponent of 0.90 and high correlation...

  12. Feronia limonia (L.) Swingle (Elephant apple; Hindi-Kaithbelj is a ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Feronia limonia (L.) Swingle (Elephant apple; Hindi-Kaithbelj is a deciduous thorny tree with aromatic leaves and small white flowers. Fruits are large, globose ofthe size of tennis balls with a hard shell. The pulp of ripe fruit is sweet and edible. The gum exudate from the tree is used in dying and coloring. The wood is made ...

  13. Blood dynamics of mercury and selenium in northern elephant seals during the lactation period

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Habran, Sarah, E-mail: S.Habran@ulg.ac.be [Laboratory for Oceanology - MARE Center B6c, University of Liege, 4000 Liege (Belgium); Debier, Cathy, E-mail: cathy.debier@uclouvain.be [Unite de Biochimie de la Nutrition, Institut des Sciences de la vie, Universite catholique de Louvain, Place Croix du Sud 2/8, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium); Crocker, Daniel E., E-mail: crocker@sonoma.edu [Department of Biology, Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park, CA 94928 (United States); Houser, Dorian S., E-mail: biomimetica@cox.net [BIOMIMETICA, Santee, CA 92071 (United States); Das, Krishna, E-mail: Krishna.Das@ulg.ac.be [Laboratory for Oceanology - MARE Center B6c, University of Liege, 4000 Liege (Belgium)

    2011-10-15

    The effects of reproduction and maternal investment (i.e., milk transfer) on trace element levels remain poorly understood in marine mammals. We examined the blood dynamics of mercury (Hg) and selenium (Se) during lactation in the northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris), a top predator from the North Pacific Ocean. Total Hg and Se levels were measured in whole blood and milk of 10 mother-pup pairs on days 5 and 22 of lactation. Both Hg and Se were transferred to offspring through the milk. Results suggested that the maternal transfer of Se was prominent during lactation, whereas the Hg transfer was larger during gestation. The lactation period affected Hg and Se levels in the blood of elephant seal mothers and pups. Physiological processes and their relationship to body condition should be considered carefully when interpreting trace element levels in the framework of biomonitoring. - Graphical abstract: Display Omitted Highlights: > The lactation period affects Hg and Se blood levels in elephant seal mothers and pups. > The Hg maternal transfer to offspring is larger during gestation. > The Se maternal transfer to offspring is prominent during lactation via the milk. - Blood levels of total Hg and Se are modified during the 4-week lactating period in northern elephant seals.

  14. Anaerobic Co-digestion of Fresh Maize Leaves with Elephant Grass ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Anaerobic co-digestion of maize leaves (ML) with Elephant grass (EG) was studied in a single phase digester at ambient temperature (29+3oC). Special attention was paid to synergistic and antagonistic effect of co-digestion of the substrates on biogas production in order to establish the best blend. Six different treatments ...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  16. Medical management of bilateral corneal opacity in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus: A case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pranab Paul

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Objective: This study was aimed at studying efficacy of medical management of corneal opacity in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus. Material and methods: A 42 years old male Asian elephant was brought to the Teaching Veterinary Hospital (TVH at Chittagong Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (CVASU with a history of chronic lacrimation and impaired vision. On clinical examination, the animal was found apparently healthy. Opthalmological examination tentatively revealed the condition as corneal opacity. The left eye was much more affected as compared to the right one. Medical management was instituted with topical administration of ciprofloxacin, dexamethasone, subconjunctival prednisolone and dexamethasone along with intramuscular ketoprofen (at 1 mg/Kg bwt and vitamin A (at 5000 IU/Kg bwt. Results: The “mahout” (elepenat caretaker of the elephant was kept in close contact over cell phone to follow up the progress of the condition. Clinical examination after 19 days revealed complete recovery of the cornel opacity. There was no sign of lacrimation and the animal regained its normal vision. Conclusion: The treatment protocol successfully eliminated the discomfort along with corneal opacity and lacrimation in an Asian elephant. [J Adv Vet Anim Res 2018; 5(1.000: 98-100

  17. 78 FR 690 - Guidelines for the Control of Tuberculosis in Elephants

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-04

    ... Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). The APHIS Animal Care program ensures compliance with AWA... DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service [Docket No. APHIS-2011-0079] Guidelines for the Control of Tuberculosis in Elephants AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service...

  18. [Perception and attitude of rural community to the construction of Asian elephant conservation corridors in Xishuangbanna].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zheng-Ling; Chen, Ming-Yong; Wu, Zhao-Lu; Wang, Qian; Dong, Yong-Hua

    2009-06-01

    By using contingent valuation method (CVM), an investigation was made from November 2007 to March 2008 on the perception and attitude of 196 households in 5 villages within 2 planned Asian elephant conservation corridors in Xishuangbanna to the construction of the corridors. 80.61% of the interviewees conditionally supported the corridors construction. The main factors affecting the interviewees' support willingness included their education level, per capita income, and perceptions to Asian elephant protection, human-elephant relations, and corridor utilization patterns and its beneficiaries, among which, the interviewees' awareness of Asian elephant conservation, corridor utilization patterns, and corridor beneficiaries had strong influence on the support willingness, with the correlation coefficient being 0.231, 0.236, and -0.304, respectively. The rural community holding the land tenure played a key role in the corridors construction. To effectively design and planning the construction of biological conservation corridor, it is necessary to have a deep understanding on the perceptions and attitudes of rural community to the construction of the corridor and to obtain their support and participation for this construction.

  19. Molecular phylogenetics of the elephant schistosome Bivitellobilharzia loxodontae (Trematoda: Schistosomatidae) from the Central African Republic

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Brant, S. V.; Pomajbíková, K.; Modrý, David; Petrželková, Klára Judita; Todd, A.; Loker, E. S.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 87, č. 01 (2013), s. 102-107 ISSN 0022-149X R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/09/0927 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 ; RVO:60077344 Keywords : schistosomes * elephant Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 1.303, year: 2013

  20. Ultrasonographically documented early pregnancy loss in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lueders, Imke; Drews, Barbara; Niemuller, Cheryl; Gray, Charlie; Rich, Peter; Fickel, Jörns; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Göritz, Frank; Hildebrandt, Thomas B

    2010-01-01

    Early embryonic resorption or fetal loss is known to occur occasionally in captive elephants; however, this has mostly been reported anecdotally. The present study documents the case of a 24-year-old, multiparous Asian elephant cow that suffered embryonic death and resorption at around 18 weeks of gestation. From ovulation onwards, this female was sonographically examined 58 times. Blood was collected twice weekly for progestagen determination via enzyme immunoassay. On Day 42 after ovulation, a small quantity of fluid was detected in the uterine horn, which typically indicates the presence of a developing conceptus. Repeated inspections followed what appeared to be a normal pregnancy until Day 116. However, on Day 124, signs of embryonic life were absent. Progestagen concentrations started declining two weeks later, reaching baseline levels one month after embryonic death. Retrospectively, ultrasound examination revealed several abnormalities in the uterine horn. Besides an existing leiomyoma, multiple small cystic structures had formed in the endometrium at the implantation site and later in the placenta. These pathological findings were considered as possible contributors to the early pregnancy failure. PCR for endotheliotropic elephant herpes virus (EEHV) (which had occurred previously in the herd) as well as serology for other infectious organisms known to cause abortion in domestic animals did not yield any positive results. Although no definitive reason was found for this pregnancy to abort, this ultrasonographically and endocrinologically documented study of an early pregnancy loss provides important insights into the resorption process in Asian elephants.

  1. Influence of dominance status on adrenal activity and ovarian cyclicity status in captive African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proctor, Christine M; Freeman, Elizabeth W; Brown, Janine L

    2010-01-01

    The North American African (Loxodonta africana) elephant population is not self-sustaining, in part because of a high rate of abnormal ovarian activity. About 12% of adult females exhibit irregular cycles and 31% do not cycle at all. Our earlier work revealed a relationship between dominance status and ovarian acyclicity, with dominant females being more likely to not cycle normally. One theory is that dominant females may be expending more energy to maintaining peace within the captive herd than for supporting reproduction. The goal of this study was to determine if there was a relationship among dominance status, serum cortisol concentrations, and ovarian acyclicity. We hypothesized that adrenal glucocorticoid activity would be increased in dominant, noncycling elephants as compared with subdominant individuals. Blood samples were collected weekly over a 2-year period in 81 females of known dominance and cyclicity status, and analyzed for cortisol. Based on a path analysis model (Reticular Action Model Or Near Approximation [RAMONA]), noncycling, dominant African elephant females did not have higher mean serum cortisol concentrations, or exhibit more variability (i.e., coefficient of variation, standard deviation) in cortisol secretion. This study suggests that alterations in adrenal activity are not related to dominance status nor contribute directly to acyclicity in captive African elephants.

  2. 130000-year-old fossil elephant found near Durban, South-Africa: preliminary-report

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Ramsay, PJ

    1993-04-01

    Full Text Available A modern African elephant tusk was discovered within a late Pleistocene aeolianite at Reunion Rocks, south of Durban. Ionium dating indicates that the tusk is older than 112 kyr BP with stratigraphic control suggesting a date at ca. 130 kyr BP...

  3. Ureteropelvic junction obstruction - mimicking an “elephant head” on magnetic resonance imaging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sony Bhaskar Mehta

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Ureteropelvic junction obstruction (UPJO with giant hydronephrosis is relatively rare in adults as compared to children. Most of the UPJO reported or seen in daily practice have a distinct hydronephrosis with a narrow ureteropelvic junction and a collapsed ureter distally. We present images a case of an adult female with Left UPJO, which on MRI mimicked an 'elephant head'.

  4. Movements and foraging areas of naove, recently weaned southern elephant seal pups

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McConnell, B.; Fedak, M.; Burton, H.R.; Engelhard, G.H.; Reijnders, P.J.H.

    2002-01-01

    1. Female southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina L. ) expend variable, often large, amounts of their stored body resources on their pups during lactation. There is some evidence that pups with higher weaning masses have a better chance of survivingtheir first year. But in order to understand what

  5. Movements and foraging areas of naive, recently weaned southern elephant seal pups

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McConnell, B; Fedak, M; Burton, HR; Engelhard, GH; Reijnders, PJH

    1. Female southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina L.) expend variable, often large, amounts of their stored body resources on their pups during lactation. There is some evidence that pups with higher weaning masses have a better chance of surviving their first year. But in order to understand what

  6. Diet selection of African elephant over time shows changing optimization currency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pretorius, Y.; Stigter, J.D.; Boer, de W.F.; Wieren, van S.E.; Jong, de C.B.; Knegt, de H.J.; Grant, R.C.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Knox, N.; Kohi, E.; Mwakiwa, E.; Peel, M.J.S.; Skidmore, A.K.; Slotow, R.; Waal, van der C.; Langevelde, van F.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    Multiple factors determine diet selection of herbivores. However, in many diet studies selection of single nutrients is studied or optimization models are developed using only one currency. In this paper, we use linear programming to explain diet selection by African elephant based on plant

  7. African elephants can use human pointing cues to find hidden food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smet, Anna F; Byrne, Richard W

    2013-10-21

    How animals gain information from attending to the behavior of others has been widely studied, driven partly by the importance of referential pointing in human cognitive development [1-4], but species differences in reading human social cues remain unexplained. One explanation is that this capacity evolved during domestication [5, 6], but it may be that only those animals able to interpret human-like social cues were successfully domesticated. Elephants are a critical taxon for this question: despite their longstanding use by humans, they have never been domesticated [7]. Here we show that a group of 11 captive African elephants, seven of them significantly as individuals, could interpret human pointing to find hidden food. We suggest that success was not due to prior training or extensive learning opportunities. Elephants successfully interpreted pointing when the experimenter's proximity to the hiding place was varied and when the ostensive pointing gesture was visually subtle, suggesting that they understood the experimenter's communicative intent. The elephant's native ability in interpreting social cues may have contributed to its long history of effective use by man. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Steers performance in dwarf elephant grass pastures alone or mixed with Arachis pintoi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crestani, Steben; Ribeiro Filho, Henrique Mendonça Nunes; Miguel, Marcolino Frederico; de Almeida, Edison Xavier; Santos, Flávio Augusto Portela

    2013-08-01

    The inclusion of legumes in pasture reduces the need for mineral nitrogen applications and the pollution of groundwater; however, the agronomic and animal husbandry advantages with tropical legumes are still little known. The objective of this study was to quantify the effect of the use of forage peanut (Arachis pintoi cv. Amarillo) in dwarf elephant grass pastures (Pennisetum purpureum cv. BRS Kurumi) on forage intake and animal performance. The experimental treatments were dwarf elephant grass fertilized with 200 kg N/ha, and dwarf elephant grass mixed with forage peanut without mineral fertilizers. The animals used for the experiment were 12 Charolais steers (body weight (BW) = 288 ± 5.2 kg) divided into four lots (two per treatment). Pastures were managed under intermittent stocking with an herbage allowance of 5.4 kg dry matter of green leaves/100 kg BW. Dry matter intake (mean = 2.44% BW), the average daily gain (mean = 0.76 kg), and the stocking rate (mean = 3.8 AU/ha) were similar between the studied pastures, but decreased drastically in last grazing cycle with the same herbage allowance. The presence of peanut in dwarf elephant grass pastures was enough to sustain the stocking rate, but did not allow increasing forage intake and animal performance.

  9. Characterization of casein and alpha lactalbumin of African elephant (Loxodonta africana) milk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madende, M; Osthoff, G; Patterton, H-G; Patterton, H E; Martin, P; Opperman, D J

    2015-12-01

    The current research reports partial characterization of the caseins and α-lactalbumin (α-LA) of the African elephant with proposed unique structure-function properties. Extensive research has been carried out to understand the structure of the casein micelles. Crystallographic structure elucidation of caseins and casein micelles is not possible. Consequently, several models have been developed in an effort to describe the casein micelle, specifically of cow milk. Here we report the characterization of African elephant milk caseins. The κ-caseins and β-caseins were investigated, and their relative ratio was found to be approximately 1:8.5, whereas α-caseins were not detected. The gene sequence of β-casein in the NCBI database was revisited, and a different sequence in the N-terminal region is proposed. Amino acid sequence alignment and hydropathy plots showed that the κ-casein of African elephant milk is similar to that of other mammals, whereas the β-casein is similar to the human protein, and displayed a section of unique AA composition and additional hydrophilic regions compared with bovine caseins. Elephant milk is destabilized by 62% alcohol, and it is speculated that the β-casein characteristics may allow maintenance of the colloidal nature of the casein micelle, a role that was previously only associated with κ-casein. The oligosaccharide content of milk was reported to be low in dairy animals but high in some other species such as humans and elephants. In the milk of the African elephant, lactose and oligosaccharides both occur at high levels. These levels are typically related to the content of α-LA in the mammary gland and thus point to a specialized carbohydrate synthesis, where the whey protein α-LA plays a role. We report the characterization of African elephant α-LA. Homology modeling of the α-LA showed that it is structurally similar to crystal structures of other mammalian species, which in turn may be an indication that its functional

  10. 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.

  11. PRODUCTION OF PRINTING AND WRITING PAPER GRADE PULP FROM ELEPHANT GRASS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcela Freitas Andrade

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The main goal of this study was to characterize chemically and morphologically elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum, and evaluate the potential of its fibers for production of printing and writing paper grade pulp. The elephant grass was chemically and morphologically characterized and cooked by the soda process to two different degrees of delignification (kappa 17.5 and 10.6. The resulting pulps were fully bleached by the O-D*-(EP-D sequence and characterized for their beatability, drainability and physical-mechanical properties. The lignin content (20.2% was low, indicating that this grass should be easier to pulp. The morphological analyses of the elephant grass indicated a short fiber material, similar to hardwoods. The soda pulp from elephant grass cooked to kappa number 17.5 presented higher screened yield than 10.6 kappa pulp, with alkali demands of 15.0% and 20.0%, respectively. The total active chlorine required by the 17.5 and 10.6 kappa pulps, were 42.1 and 35.1 kg/odt pulp, respectively, to achieve an ISO brightness of approximately 90.0%. The bleached soda pulps cooked to 17.5 and 10.6 kappa number showed similar refinability and resistance to drainage, but the tensile and burst index were highest for the 17.5 kappa pulp at beating energy consumptions in the range of 0-6 Wh. It was concluded that both 10.6 and 17.5 kappa pulps from elephant grass are suitable for the production of printing and writing paper grade pulps, but the highest kappa 17.5 pulp is more economically attractive given its highest pulping yield, despite the significantly increased of chemical demand for bleaching A produção de papel para impressão e escrita Grau de celulose a partir de capim-elefante.

  12. Animal perception of seasonal thresholds: changes in elephant movement in relation to rainfall patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birkett, Patricia J; Vanak, Abi T; Muggeo, Vito M R; Ferreira, Salamon M; Slotow, Rob

    2012-01-01

    The identification of temporal thresholds or shifts in animal movement informs ecologists of changes in an animal's behaviour, which contributes to an understanding of species' responses in different environments. In African savannas, rainfall, temperature and primary productivity influence the movements of large herbivores and drive changes at different scales. Here, we developed a novel approach to define seasonal shifts in movement behaviour by examining the movements of a highly mobile herbivore (elephant; Loxodonta africana), in relation to local and regional rainfall patterns. We used speed to determine movement changes of between 8 and 14 GPS-collared elephant cows, grouped into five spatial clusters, in Kruger National Park, South Africa. To detect broad-scale patterns of movement, we ran a three-year daily time-series model for each individual (2007-2009). Piecewise regression models provided the best fit for elephant movement, which exhibited a segmented, waveform pattern over time. Major breakpoints in speed occurred at the end of the dry and wet seasons of each year. During the dry season, female elephant are constrained by limited forage and thus the distances they cover are shorter and less variable. Despite the inter-annual variability of rainfall, speed breakpoints were strongly correlated with both local and regional rainfall breakpoints across all three years. Thus, at a multi-year scale, rainfall patterns significantly affect the movements of elephant. The variability of both speed and rainfall breakpoints across different years highlights the need for an objective definition of seasonal boundaries. By using objective criteria to determine behavioural shifts, we identified a biologically meaningful indicator of major changes in animal behaviour in different years. We recommend the use of such criteria, from an animal's perspective, for delineating seasons or other extrinsic shifts in ecological studies, rather than arbitrarily fixed definitions

  13. Animal perception of seasonal thresholds: changes in elephant movement in relation to rainfall patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia J Birkett

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The identification of temporal thresholds or shifts in animal movement informs ecologists of changes in an animal's behaviour, which contributes to an understanding of species' responses in different environments. In African savannas, rainfall, temperature and primary productivity influence the movements of large herbivores and drive changes at different scales. Here, we developed a novel approach to define seasonal shifts in movement behaviour by examining the movements of a highly mobile herbivore (elephant; Loxodonta africana, in relation to local and regional rainfall patterns. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used speed to determine movement changes of between 8 and 14 GPS-collared elephant cows, grouped into five spatial clusters, in Kruger National Park, South Africa. To detect broad-scale patterns of movement, we ran a three-year daily time-series model for each individual (2007-2009. Piecewise regression models provided the best fit for elephant movement, which exhibited a segmented, waveform pattern over time. Major breakpoints in speed occurred at the end of the dry and wet seasons of each year. During the dry season, female elephant are constrained by limited forage and thus the distances they cover are shorter and less variable. Despite the inter-annual variability of rainfall, speed breakpoints were strongly correlated with both local and regional rainfall breakpoints across all three years. Thus, at a multi-year scale, rainfall patterns significantly affect the movements of elephant. The variability of both speed and rainfall breakpoints across different years highlights the need for an objective definition of seasonal boundaries. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: By using objective criteria to determine behavioural shifts, we identified a biologically meaningful indicator of major changes in animal behaviour in different years. We recommend the use of such criteria, from an animal's perspective, for delineating seasons or

  14. Harry Pye postkaart Londonist : Elevant ja Kindlus = Harry Pye's Postcard from London : The Elephant & Castle / Harry Pye

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Pye, Harry, 1973-

    2008-01-01

    Londoni kirjanik ja kunstnik Harry Pye Lõuna-Londoni linnaosast Elephant & Castle, mille võlu ta avastab koos sõpradega linnaosast näituse jaoks fotosid tehes. Fotod eksponeeritakse grupinäitusel "Tõeline elu"

  15. The effect of mature elephant bull introductions on ranging patterns of resident bulls: Phinda Private Game Reserve, South Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Heleen Druce; K. Pretorius; D. Druce; R. Slotow

    2006-01-01

    Increasing popularity of wildlife viewing has resulted in a rapid increase in small, enclosed reserves in South Africa. The African elephant is one of the many species that has been reintroduced into these reserves for eco-tourism. These elephant populations were established as young (smaller that 10 years old) orphans from prior Kruger National Park culling operations. Consequently, this abnormal sex and age structure of these introduced populations has influenced their behavioural and spati...

  16. An attitude assessment of human-elephant conflict in a critical wildlife corridor within the Terai Arc Landscape, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Biba Jasmine

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available This study entails an attitude assessment of the local people living at Mankanthpur Village, one of the bottlenecks in the Bailparao-Kotabagh corridor, Terai West Forest Division, on the issue of elephant conservation, human-(wildlife elephant conflict, and the measures to mitigate it.  Data was collected through a questionnaire survey and several group discussions among the villagers.  The frequency of crop raids and group size of elephants were calculated.  Sixty-two crop raids took place during the study period (February–April 2010, and a mean sighting of 1.08 elephants per day was recorded.  Data from the survey reflects that about 3.53ha of crop land was damaged by the elephants during the survey period.  The people residing on the fringes of the park and in the villages along the Bailparao-Kotabagh Corridor were surveyed about the conflict impact.  Survey results indicate that the most effective management measures used were a combination of loud noise and scaring away elephants using fire.  Local peoples’ views regarding the current status of elephant raids and conservation were also documented.  Peoples’ reaction to compensation schemes was studied; 89% of the respondents feel an effective approach to compensation is a way to reduce sufferings due to conflict with wildlife.  Attempts to reduce the conflict by forming local elephant control teams and enclosing the affected village with a tall cemented wall are under trial.  The underlying assumption in this study is that if damage severely affects the livelihood of local communities, getting their active support, which is essential for conservation, will be difficult. 

  17. 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.

  18. THE PERCEPTION OF COMMUNITY TOWARDS THE DISTURBANCE OF SUMATERAN ELEPHANT (ELEPHAS MAXIMUS SUMATRANUS IN OGAN KOMERING ILIR REGENCY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita Rianti

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Research of elephant conflict with community have been conducted in Sungai Menang District, Ogan Komering Ilir Regency, South Sumatera Province. This study was conducted in three villages in September through December 2015. This study aimed to identify the perception and socio-economic characteristics of the community related to the conflict towards elephant conservation value. Data was collected through structured interview, while respondents were selected intentionally (purposive sampling. The results are shown that the level of community education in the village of Gajah Mati dan Gajah Mulya are low, 51% and 47% respectively, which are elementary school graduates, while the level of education in the village of Gajah Mukti is 58% of high school graduates. The majority of respondents are in productive age classes and worked as a farmer. The average income per month of people in the village of Gajah Mati is Rp1,814,583, while in Gajah Mukti and Gajah Mulya Village are Rp1,158,750 and Rp1,060,833 respectively. Elephants disturbance occur in all respondent villages and has an impact on the community perception of the elephant conservation becomes negative. Most respondents want that the elephants are relocated to Padang Sugihan Wildlife Sanctuary which is suitable for the habitat of the elephants.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Streptococcus agalactiae in elephants - A comparative study with isolates from human and zoo animal and livestock origin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenberg, Tobias; Rau, Jörg; Westerhüs, Uta; Knauf-Witzens, Tobias; Fawzy, Ahmad; Schlez, Karen; Zschöck, Michael; Prenger-Berninghoff, Ellen; Heydel, Carsten; Sting, Reinhard; Glaeser, Stefanie P; Pulami, Dipen; van der Linden, Mark; Ewers, Christa

    2017-05-01

    Streptococcus (S.) agalactiae represents a significant pathogen for humans and animals. However, there are only a few elderly reports on S. agalactiae infections in wild and zoo elephants even though this pathogen has been isolated comparatively frequently in these endangered animal species. Consequently, between 2004 and 2015, we collected S. agalactiae isolates from African and Asian elephants (n=23) living in four different zoos in Germany. These isolates were characterised and compared with isolates from other animal species (n=20 isolates) and humans (n=3). We found that the isolates from elephants can be readily identified by classical biochemistry and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Further characterisations for epidemiological issues were achieved using Fourier transform-infrared spectroscopy, capsule typing and molecular fingerprinting (PFGE, RAPD PCR). We could demonstrate that our elephant isolate collection contained at least six different lineages that were representative for their source of origin. Despite generally broad antimicrobial susceptibility of S. agalactiae, many showed tetracycline resistance in vitro. S. agalactiae plays an important role in bacterial infections not only in cattle and humans, but also in elephants. Comparative studies were able to differentiate S. agalactiae isolates from elephants into different infectious clusters based on their epidemiological background. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. 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.

  3. Food and feeding behaviour of Asiatic elephant (Elephas maximus Linn.) in Kuldiha Wild Life Sanctuary, Odisha, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohapatra, Kalpana K; Patra, A K; Paramanik, D S

    2013-01-01

    The feeding behaviour of Asiatic elephant (Elephas maximus) with food reference was studied in Kuldiha Wildlife Sanctuary in Odisha during 2007 to 2009. Though the study area houses a good number of plant species only 71 species were identified as elephant fodder plants. The food trail of elephant was observed as twig breaking, bark peeling, branch breaking, stem twisting uprooting and flower plucking in different regions of study area during different seasons. Alteration of predominantly browsing strategy with that of grazing around the year was related to seasonal variation of food plants. Consumption of tree species (56%) was highest as compared to shrubs (20%), herbs (14%) and climbers (10%). A high degree of variation in dicot- monocot ratio (61:10)) was marked during identification of elephant fodder plant by direct observation. Microscopic analysis of dung showing a high degree of variation in average dicot- monocot ratio suggested that the food plant selection of elephant was highly opportunistic and seasonal. The elephants extensively fed on the plant species like Careya arborea, Kydia calycina, Helicteres isora, Mallotus philippinensis, Aegle marmelos, Zizyphus mauritiona, Bauhinia racemosa, Bauhinia vahlii, Mimosa pudica, Asparagus racemosus, Smilax zeylanica and Diosporea species. They were fond of Madhuca indica (Mahula) flowers in winter and fruits of Mangifera indica (Mango) in summer. They were never found feeding on Tectona grandis and Eucalyptus maculate inside the study area.

  4. Elephants and human intervention in the Lower and Middle Pleistocene sites of Africa and Europe

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    Martos Romero, Juan Antonio

    1998-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we review some African and European sites at which it is claimed that elephants were exploted by humans. The differences between sites with only one individual (type 1 and sites with a large number of elephants (type 2 are related to different formation processes and particular problems which limit the informative potential of sites.

    En el presente artículo se revisan yacimientos africanos y europeos donde se ha planteado la existencia de una intervención humana sobre elefantes. Se establece una diferencia entre sitios con un sólo individuo (tipo 1 o un número alto de elefantes (tipo 2. Con independencia del carácter de la intervención humana, cuando ésta es evidente, tales diferencias responden a unos procesos de formación distintos con problemáticas singulares que condicionan finalmente la capacidad informativa del yacimiento.

  5. Spotted hyaenas Crocuta crocuta prey on new-born elephant calves in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe

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    Julia Salnicki

    2001-07-01

    Full Text Available Spotted hyaena Crocuta crocuta are known to be opportunists and to have a varied diet including mammals, reptiles and birds. Prey most often hunted are medium sized ungulates but spotted hyaenas will on occasion take larger species such as giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis and zebra Equus burchellii. They are also known to hunt whichever species are most abundant and will vary their prey seasonally. In this study spotted hyaenas were observed to take an unusual prey species in the form of elephant calves (Loxodonta africana. On a number of occasions hyaenas were observed feeding on or killing newborn and very young elephant calves. These observations were made whilst the authors were conducting research on spotted hyaena ecology in the woodlands of Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe and were made during the dry season between September and November 1999.

  6. Age- and tactic-related paternity success in male African elephants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Henrik Barner; Okello, J. B. A.; Wittemyer, G.

    2008-01-01

    on age- and tactic-specific paternity success in male African elephants are the first from a free-ranging population and demonstrate that paternity success increases dramatically with age, with the small number of older bulls in the competitive state of musth being the most successful sires. However......, nonmusth males sired 20% of genotyped calves, and 60% of mature bulls (>20 years old) were estimated to have sired offspring during the 5-year study period. The 3 most successful males sired less than 20% of the genotyped offspring. Hence, contrary to prediction from behavior and life-history traits......, reproduction was not heavily skewed compared with many other mammalian systems with a similar breeding system. Nevertheless, these results indicate that trophy hunting and ivory poaching, both of which target older bulls, may have substantial behavioral and genetic effects on elephant populations. In addition...

  7. Esophageal dissection and hematoma associated with obstruction in an Indian elephant (Elephas maximus indicus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phair, Kristen A; Sutherland-Smith, Meg; Pye, Geoffrey W; Pessier, Allan P; Clippinger, Tracy L

    2014-06-01

    A 42-year-old female Indian elephant (Elephas maximus indicus) developed a sudden onset of excessive salivation and dysphagia. Esophageal obstruction was suspected; possibly related to palm frond ingestion. Esophageal endoscopy revealed a mat of plant material in the distal esophagus. An initial attempt at relieving the obstruction was unsuccessful, but subsequent use of custom-made instruments along with insufflation and hydropulsion enabled partial removal of the material. Postimmobilization care included aggressive intravenous and rectal fluids, anti-inflammatory and antibiotic administration, and fasting. Despite treatment, the dysphagia persisted and the elephant was euthanized due to lack of improvement and grave prognosis. Postmortem examination revealed remaining plant material in the esophagus, complicated by an esophageal dissection, mural hematoma, and secondary bacterial infection. Iatrogenic trauma may have contributed to the extent of esophageal injury. Although treatment was ultimately unsuccessful, the supportive care employed could potentially aid recovery in cases of less severe esophageal trauma.

  8. The influence of chemical methods (acid modification) on elephant foot yam flour to improve physical and chemical quality on processed food

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paramita, Octavianti; Wahyuningsih, Ansori, Muhammad

    2018-03-01

    This study was aimed at improving the physicochemical quality of elephant foot yam flour in Gunungpati, Semarang by acid modification. The utilization of elephant foot yam flour in several processed food was also discussed in this study. The flour of the experimental result discussed in this study was expected to become a reference for the manufacturers of elephant foot yam flour and its processed food in Gunungpati. This study modified the elephant foot yam flour using acid modification method. The physical and chemical quality of each elephant foot yam flour of the experimental result sample were assessed using proximate analysis. The resulting tuber flour weighed 50 grams and the soaked in acid solution with various concentrations 5 %, 10 % and 15 % with soaking duration 30, 60 and 90 minutes at temperature 35 °C. The resulting suspension was washed 3 times, filtered and then dried by cabinet dryer using 46 °C for 2 days. The dried flour was sifted with a 80 mesh sieve. Chemical test was conducted after elephant foot yam was acid modification to determine changes in the quality flour: test levels of protein, fat, crude fiber content, moisture content, ash content and starch content. In addition, color tests and granular test on elephant foot yam flour were also conducted. The acid modification as chemical treatment on elephant foot yam flour in this study was able to change the functional properties of elephant foot yam flour towards a better processing characterized by a brighter color (L = 80, a = 8 and b = 12), the hydrolysis of polysaccharides flour into shorter chain (flour content decreased to 72%), the expansion of granules in elephant foot yam resulting in a process - ready flour, and better monolayer water content of 11%. The content of protein and fiber on the elephant foot yam flour also can be maintained at a level of 8% and 1.9% levels.

  9. Using interviews and biological sign surveys to infer seasonal use of forested and agricultural portions of a human-dominated landscape by Asian elephants in Nepal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamichhane, Babu Ram; Subedi, Naresh; Pokheral, Chiranjibi Prasad; Dhakal, Maheshwar; Acharya, Krishna Prasad; Pradhan, Narendra Man Babu; Smith, James L. David; Malla, Sabita; Thakuri, Bishnu Singh; Yackulic, Charles B.

    2018-01-01

    Understanding how wide-ranging animals use landscapes in which human use is highly heterogeneous is important for determining patterns of human–wildlife conflict and designing mitigation strategies. Here, we show how biological sign surveys in forested components of a human-dominated landscape can be combined with human interviews in agricultural portions of a landscape to provide a full picture of seasonal use of different landscape components by wide-ranging animals and resulting human–wildlife conflict. We selected Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in Nepal to illustrate this approach. Asian elephants are threatened throughout their geographic range, and there are large gaps in our understanding of their landscape-scale habitat use. We identified all potential elephant habitat in Nepal and divided the potential habitat into sampling units based on a 10 km by 10 km grid. Forested areas within grids were surveyed for signs of elephant use, and local villagers were interviewed regarding elephant use of agricultural areas and instances of conflict. Data were analyzed using single-season and multi-season (dynamic) occupancy models. A single-season occupancy model applied to data from 139 partially or wholly forested grid cells estimated that 0.57 of grid cells were used by elephants. Dynamic occupancy models fit to data from interviews across 158 grid cells estimated that monthly use of non-forested, human-dominated areas over the preceding year varied between 0.43 and 0.82 with a minimum in February and maximum in October. Seasonal patterns of crop raiding by elephants coincided with monthly elephant use of human-dominated areas, and serious instances of human–wildlife conflict were common. Efforts to mitigate human–elephant conflict in Nepal are likely to be most effective if they are concentrated during August through December when elephant use of human-dominated landscapes and human–elephant conflict are most common.

  10. Population genetic structure of savannah elephants in Kenya: conservation and management implications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Okello, John B A; Masembe, Charles; Rasmussen, Henrik B

    2008-01-01

    We investigated population genetic structure and regional differentiation among African savannah elephants in Kenya using mitochondrial and microsatellite markers. We observed mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) nucleotide diversity of 1.68% and microsatellite variation in terms of average number of allele...... through male-mediated gene flow. Our results depicting 3 broad regional mtDNA groups and the observed population genetic differentiation as well as connectivity patterns should be incorporated in the planning of future management activities such as translocations....

  11. Chemical composition and fermentation characteristics of elephant grass silage with biodiesel industry co-products

    OpenAIRE

    Cleef,Eric Haydt Castello Branco van; Silva Filho,José Cleto da; Neiva Júnior,Arnaldo Prata; Patiño Pardo,René Maurício; Rêgo,Aníbal Coutinho do; Gonçalves,Josemir de Souza

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this research was to evaluate the effect of three concentrations (3, 6, and 9%) of forage turnip (Raphanus sativus) and physic nut (Jatropha curcas) cakes on dry matter, crude protein, ether extract, neutral detergent fiber, acid detergent fiber, lignin, acid detergent insoluble nitrogen neutral detergent insoluble nitrogen contents, in vitro dry matter digestibility, pH values and concentrations of N-NH3 in elephant grass silages. It was used an entirely randomized design in...

  12. Whole body perfusion in patients undergoing frozen elephant trunk for type A acute aortic dissections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappabianca, Giangiuseppe; Roscitano, Claudio; Bichi, Samuele; Cricco, Antonio; Parrinello, Matteo; Beghi, Cesare; Albano, Giovanni; Esposito, Giampiero

    2017-03-01

    The Frozen Elephant Trunk (FET) can be adopted in selected type A acute aortic dissections (TAAAD). During FET, a prolonged distal circulatory arrest exposes the spine and visceral organs to potential ischemic injuries. Antegrade distal aortic perfusion (ADAP) could minimize this risk: we describe the technical aspects of the simultaneous use of antegrade cerebral perfusion (ACP) and ADAP achieving a "Whole Body Perfusion" (WBP) during FET.

  13. Lactotransferrin in Asian elephant (Elephas maximus seminal plasma correlates with semen quality.

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    Wendy K Kiso

    Full Text Available Asian elephants (Elephas maximus have highly variable ejaculate quality within individuals, greatly reducing the efficacy of artificial insemination and making it difficult to devise a sperm cryopreservation protocol for this endangered species. Because seminal plasma influences sperm function and physiology, including sperm motility, the objectives of this study were to characterize the chemistry and protein profiles of Asian elephant seminal plasma and to determine the relationships between seminal plasma components and semen quality. Ejaculates exhibiting good sperm motility (≥65% expressed higher percentages of spermatozoa with normal morphology (80.3±13.0 vs. 44.9±30.8% and positive Spermac staining (51.9±14.5 vs. 7.5±14.4%, in addition to higher total volume (135.1±89.6 vs. 88.8±73.1 ml and lower sperm concentration (473.0±511.2 vs. 1313.8±764.7×10⁶ cells ml⁻¹ compared to ejaculates exhibiting poor sperm motility (≤10%; P<0.05. Comparison of seminal plasma from ejaculates with good versus poor sperm motility revealed significant differences in concentrations of creatine phosphokinase, alanine aminotransferase, phosphorus, sodium, chloride, magnesium, and glucose. These observations suggest seminal plasma influences semen quality in elephants. One- and two-dimensional (2D gel electrophoresis revealed largely similar compositional profiles of seminal plasma proteins between good and poor motility ejaculates. However, a protein of ∼80 kDa was abundant in 85% of ejaculates with good motility, and was absent in 90% of poor motility ejaculates (P<0.05. We used mass spectrometry to identify this protein as lactotransferrin, and immunoblot analysis to confirm this identification. Together, these findings lay a functional foundation for understanding the contributions of seminal plasma in the regulation of Asian elephant sperm motility, and for improving semen collection and storage in this endangered species.

  14. Serodiagnosis of tuberculosis in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus in Southern India: a latent class analysis.

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    Shalu Verma-Kumar

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a causative agent of chronic tuberculosis disease, is widespread among some animal species too. There is paucity of information on the distribution, prevalence and true disease status of tuberculosis in Asian elephants (Elephas maximus. The aim of this study was to estimate the sensitivity and specificity of serological tests to diagnose M. tuberculosis infection in captive elephants in southern India while simultaneously estimating sero-prevalence. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Health assessment of 600 elephants was carried out and their sera screened with a commercially available rapid serum test. Trunk wash culture of select rapid serum test positive animals yielded no animal positive for M. tuberculosis isolation. Under Indian field conditions where the true disease status is unknown, we used a latent class model to estimate the diagnostic characteristics of an existing (rapid serum test and new (four in-house ELISA tests. One hundred and seventy nine sera were randomly selected for screening in the five tests. Diagnostic sensitivities of the four ELISAs were 91.3-97.6% (95% Credible Interval (CI: 74.8-99.9 and diagnostic specificity were 89.6-98.5% (95% CI: 79.4-99.9 based on the model we assumed. We estimate that 53.6% (95% CI: 44.6-62.8 of the samples tested were free from infection with M. tuberculosis and 15.9% (97.5% CI: 9.8 - to 24.0 tested positive on all five tests. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results provide evidence for high prevalence of asymptomatic M. tuberculosis infection in Asian elephants in a captive Indian setting. Further validation of these tests would be important in formulating area-specific effective surveillance and control measures.

  15. Conservation planning for a widespread, threatened species: WWF and the African elephant Loxodonta africana

    OpenAIRE

    Stephenson, Peter J.; Ntiamoa-Baidu, Yaa

    2017-01-01

    In a case study of conservation planning by a conservation organization working at a continental scale we examine how WWF identified and prioritized its African elephant Loxodonta africana conservation activities. We (1) review lessons learnt from previous work, (2) identify priority landscapes using biological criteria (e.g. population size and viability) and institutional criteria (e.g. feasibility, sustainability and cost-effectiveness of WWF interventions), and (3) conduct a threat analys...

  16. Prolonged fasting increases purine recycling in post-weaned northern elephant seals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soñanez-Organis, José Guadalupe; Vázquez-Medina, José Pablo; Zenteno-Savín, Tania; Aguilar, Andres; Crocker, Daniel E; Ortiz, Rudy M

    2012-05-01

    Northern elephant seals are naturally adapted to prolonged periods (1-2 months) of absolute food and water deprivation (fasting). In terrestrial mammals, food deprivation stimulates ATP degradation and decreases ATP synthesis, resulting in the accumulation of purines (ATP degradation byproducts). Hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyl transferase (HGPRT) salvages ATP by recycling the purine degradation products derived from xanthine oxidase (XO) metabolism, which also promotes oxidant production. The contributions of HGPRT to purine recycling during prolonged food deprivation in marine mammals are not well defined. In the present study we cloned and characterized the complete and partial cDNA sequences that encode for HGPRT and xanthine oxidoreductase (XOR) in northern elephant seals. We also measured XO protein expression and circulating activity, along with xanthine and hypoxanthine plasma content in fasting northern elephant seal pups. Blood, adipose and muscle tissue samples were collected from animals after 1, 3, 5 and 7 weeks of their natural post-weaning fast. The complete HGPRT and partial XOR cDNA sequences are 771 and 345 bp long and encode proteins of 218 and 115 amino acids, respectively, with conserved domains important for their function and regulation. XOR mRNA and XO protein expression increased 3-fold and 1.7-fold with fasting, respectively, whereas HGPRT mRNA (4-fold) and protein (2-fold) expression increased after 7 weeks in adipose tissue and muscle. Plasma xanthine (3-fold) and hypoxanthine (2.5-fold) levels, and XO (1.7- to 20-fold) and HGPRT (1.5- to 1.7-fold) activities increased during the last 2 weeks of fasting. Results suggest that prolonged fasting in elephant seal pups is associated with increased capacity to recycle purines, which may contribute to ameliorating oxidant production and enhancing the supply of ATP, both of which would be beneficial during prolonged food deprivation and appear to be adaptive in this species.

  17. Renaut bodies in nerves of the trunk of the African elephant, Loxodonta africana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witter, Kirsti; Egger, Gunter F; Boeck, Peter

    2007-05-01

    Renaut bodies are loosely textured, cell-sparse structures in the subperineurial space of peripheral nerves, frequently found at sites of nerve entrapment. The trunk of the elephant is a mobile, richly innervated organ, which serves for food gathering, object grasping and as a tactile organ. These functions of the trunk lead to distortion and mechanical compression of its nerves, which can therefore be expected to contain numerous Renaut bodies. Samples of the trunk wall of an adult African elephant (Loxodonta africana) were examined histologically using conventional staining methods, immunohistochemistry, and lectin histochemistry. Architecture of nerve plexuses and occurrence of Renaut bodies in the elephant trunk were compared with those in tissues surrounding the nasal vestibule of the pig. Prominent nerve plexuses were found in all layers of the elephant trunk. Almost all (81%) nerve profiles contained Renaut bodies, a basophilic, discrete subperineurial layer resembling cushions around the nerve core. In contrast, Renaut bodies were seen in only 15% of nerve profiles in the porcine nasal vestibule. Within Renaut bodies, fusiform fibroblasts and round, ruff-like cells were placed into a matrix of acidic glycosaminoglycans with delicate collagen and very few reticular fibers. The turgor of this matrix is thought to protect nerves against compression and shearing strain. Renaut bodies are readily stained with alcian blue (pH 2.5) favorably in combination with immunohistochemical markers of nerve fibers. They should be regarded as a physiological response to repeated mechanical insults and are distinct from pathological alterations. alterations. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  18. An assessment of human-elephant conflict in Manas National Park, Assam, India

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    N.K. Nath

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available An assessment of human-elephant conflict was carried out in the fringe villages around Manas National Park, Assam during 2005-06. The available forest department conflict records since 1991 onwards were also incorporated during analysis. Conflict was intense in the months of July-August and was mostly concentrated along the forest boundary areas, decreasing with distance from the Park. Crop damage occurred during two seasons; paddy (the major crop suffered the most due to raiding. Crop maturity and frequency of raiding were positively correlated. Single bull elephants were involved in conflicts more frequently (59% than female herds (41%, while herds were involved in majority of crop raiding cases. Of the single elephants, 88% were makhnas and 11.9% were tuskers. The average herd size recorded was 8 individuals, with group size ranging up to 16. Mitigation measures presently adopted involve traditional drive-away techniques including making noise by shouting, drum beating, bursting fire crackers and firing gun shots into the air, and using torch light, pelting stones and throwing burning torches. Kunkis have been used in severe cases. Machans are used for guarding the crops. Combinations of methods are most effective. Family herds were easily deflected, while single bulls were difficult to ward off. Affected villagers have suggested methods like regular patrolling (39% by the Forest Department officials along the Park boundary, erection of a concrete wall (18% along the Park boundary, electric fencing (13%, simply drive away (13%, culling (11% and lighting the Park boundary during night hours (6%. Attempts to reduce conflict by changing the traditional cropping pattern by introducing some elephant-repellent alternative cash crops (e.g. lemon and chilli are under experiment.

  19. How should the psychological well-being of zoo elephants be objectively investigated?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Georgia J; Veasey, Jake S

    2010-01-01

    Animal welfare (sometimes termed "well-being") is about feelings - states such as "suffering" or "contentment" that we can infer but cannot measure directly. Welfare indices have been developed from two main sources: studies of suffering humans, and of research animals deliberately subjected to challenges known to affect emotional state. We briefly review the resulting indices here, and discuss how well they are understood for elephants, since objective welfare assessment should play a central role in evidence-based elephant management. We cover behavioral and cognitive responses (approach/avoidance; intention, redirected and displacement activities; vigilance/startle; warning signals; cognitive biases, apathy and depression-like changes; stereotypic behavior); physiological responses (sympathetic responses; corticosteroid output - often assayed non-invasively via urine, feces or even hair; other aspects of HPA function, e.g. adrenal hypertrophy); and the potential negative effects of prolonged stress on reproduction (e.g. reduced gametogenesis; low libido; elevated still-birth rates; poor maternal care) and health (e.g. poor wound-healing; enhanced disease rates; shortened lifespans). The best validated, most used welfare indices for elephants are corticosteroid outputs and stereotypic behavior. Indices suggested as valid, partially validated, and/or validated but not yet applied within zoos include: measures of preference/avoidance; displacement movements; vocal/postural signals of affective (emotional) state; startle/vigilance; apathy; salivary and urinary epinephrine; female acyclity; infant mortality rates; skin/foot infections; cardio-vascular disease; and premature adult death. Potentially useful indices that have not yet attracted any validation work in elephants include: operant responding and place preference tests; intention and vacuum movements; fear/stress pheromone release; cognitive biases; heart rate, pupil dilation and blood pressure

  20. Legal ivory trade in a corrupt world and its impact on African elephant populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Elizabeth L

    2015-02-01

    Illegal hunting of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) for ivory is causing rapid declines in their populations. Since 2007, illegal ivory trade has more than doubled. African elephants are facing the most serious conservation crisis since 1989, when international trade was banned. One solution proposed is establishment of a controlled legal trade in ivory. High prices for ivory mean that the incentives to obtain large quantities are high, but the quantity of tusks available for trade are biologically constrained. Within that context, effective management of a legal ivory trade would require robust systems to be in place to ensure that ivory from illegally killed elephants cannot be laundered into a legal market. At present, that is not feasible due to corruption among government officials charged with implementing wildlife-related legislation. With organized criminal enterprises involved along the whole commodity chain, corruption enables the laundering of illegal ivory into legal or potentially legal markets. Poachers and traffickers can rapidly pay their way out of trouble, so the financial incentives to break the law heavily outweigh those of abiding by it. Maintaining reliable permitting systems and leak-proof chains of custody in this context is challenging, and effective management breaks down. Once illegal ivory has entered the legal trade, it is difficult or impossible for enforcement officers to know what is legal and illegal. Addressing corruption throughout a trade network that permeates countries across the globe will take decades, if it can ever be achieved. That will be too late for wild African elephants at current rates of loss. If we are to conserve remaining wild populations, we must close all markets because, under current levels of corruption, they cannot be controlled in a way that does not provide opportunities for illegal ivory being laundered into legal markets. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  1. Risk factors for saddle-related skin lesions on elephants used in the tourism industry in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magda, Scarlett; Spohn, Olivia; Angkawanish, Taweepoke; Smith, Dale A; Pearl, David L

    2015-05-19

    Lesions related to working conditions and improper saddle design are a concern for a variety of working animals including elephants. The objectives of the present study were to determine the prevalence of cutaneous lesions in anatomic regions (i.e., neck, girth, back, tail) in contact with saddle-related equipment among elephants in Thailand working in the tourism industry, and to identify potential risk factors associated with these lesions. Data for this cross-sectional study were collected between May 2007 and July 2007 on 194 elephants from 18 tourism camps across Thailand. There was a high prevalence (64.4 %; 95 % CI 57.3 - 71.2) of active lesions, most often located on the back region. Using multilevel multivariable logistic regression modelling containing a random intercept for camp we identified the following risk factors: increasing elephant age, the use of rice sacks as padding material in contact with the skin, and the provision of a break for the elephants. Working hours had a quadratic relationship with the log odds of an active lesion where the probability of an active lesion initially increased with the number of working hours per day and then declined possibly reflecting a "healthy worker" bias where only animals without lesions continue to be able to work these longer hours. While we recognize that the cross-sectional nature of the study posed some inferential limitations, our results offer several potential intervention points for the prevention of these lesions. Specifically, we recommend the following until longitudinal studies can be conducted: increased monitoring of older elephants and the back region of all elephants, working less than 6 hours per day, and the avoidance of rice sacks as padding material in contact with skin.

  2. The impact of an increasing elephant population on the woody vegetation in southern Sabi Sand Wildtuin, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kay Hiscocks

    1999-07-01

    Full Text Available In 1961, a fence was erected between privately owned Sabi Sand Wildtuin (SSW and the Kruger National Park (KNP, which largely prevented elephants entering the SSW. In 1993, the fence was removed. This lead to a rapid influx of elephants into the SSW during the winter months, most of which move back into the KNP during the wet summer season. In 1993, the SSW elephant population was 1/1045 ha but increased to 1/305.8 ha in 1996. It more than doubled to 1/146 ha in 1998. This study was undertaken on the property Kingston, in southern SSW, to assess the impact of elephants on woody vegetation and determine why they show seasonal dietary preferences for specific tree parts. Vegetation utilisation was recorded on a five kilometer transect of vehicle track in 1996 and repeated in 1998. From the transect, species density was calculated for those trees impacted on. Trees that had been newly bark stripped were recorded in 1996 and 1998. Cambium samples were collected in summer and winter from eight tree species. Field observations of elephants impacting on woody vegetation augmented the data base. Transect analysis showed a strong correlation between tree utilisation and density. The most visual damage was of Combretum apiculatum, Acacia burkei, Pterocarpus rotundifolius and Grewia species. Tree damage increased by 73 from 1996 to 1998. Significantly higher levels of nitrogen, sodium and magnesium were found in the species most regularly bark stripped. Bull elephants were responsible for 94 of the trees seen uprooted. The results suggested that SSW can sustain the present elephant population, but further influx at the present rate of increase, will have a negative impact on the reserve.

  3. Interspecific interference competition at the resource patch scale: do large herbivores spatially avoid elephants while accessing water?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferry, Nicolas; Dray, Stéphane; Fritz, Hervé; Valeix, Marion

    2016-11-01

    Animals may anticipate and try to avoid, at some costs, physical encounters with other competitors. This may ultimately impact their foraging distribution and intake rates. Such cryptic interference competition is difficult to measure in the field, and extremely little is known at the interspecific level. We tested the hypothesis that smaller species avoid larger ones because of potential costs of interference competition and hence expected them to segregate from larger competitors at the scale of a resource patch. We assessed fine-scale spatial segregation patterns between three African herbivore species (zebra Equus quagga, kudu Tragelaphus strepsiceros and giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis) and a megaherbivore, the African elephant Loxodonta africana, at the scale of water resource patches in the semi-arid ecosystem of Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe. Nine waterholes were monitored every two weeks during the dry season of a drought year, and observational scans of the spatial distribution of all herbivores were performed every 15 min. We developed a methodological approach to analyse such fine-scale spatial data. Elephants increasingly used waterholes as the dry season progressed, as did the probability of co-occurrence and agonistic interaction with elephants for the three study species. All three species segregated from elephants at the beginning of the dry season, suggesting a spatial avoidance of elephants and the existence of costs of being close to them. However, contrarily to our expectations, herbivores did not segregate from elephants the rest of the dry season but tended to increasingly aggregate with elephants as the dry season progressed. We discuss these surprising results and the existence of a trade-off between avoidance of interspecific interference competition and other potential factors such as access to quality water, which may have relative associated costs that change with the time of the year. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology

  4. Modeling The Fate of Sumatran Elephants in Bukit Tigapuluh Indonesia: Research Needs & Implications for Population Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Markus Moßbrucker

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The critically endangered Sumatran elephant persists in mainly small and isolated populations that may require intensive management to be viable in the long term. Population Viability Analysis (PVA provides the opportunity to evaluate conservation strategies and objectives prior to implementation, which can be very valuable for site managers by supporting their decision making process. This study applies PVA to a local population of Sumatran elephants roaming the Bukit Tigapuluh landscape, Sumatra, with the main goal to explore the impact of pre-selected conservation measures and population scenarios on both population growth rate and extinction probability. Sensitivity testing revealed considerable parameter uncertainties that should be addressed by targeted research projects in order to improve the predictive power of the baseline population model. Given that further habitat destruction can be prevented, containing illegal killings appears to be of highest priority among the tested conservation measures and represents a mandatory pre-condition for activities addressing inbreeding depression such as elephant translocation or the establishment of a conservation corridor.

  5. Recurrent neural network-based modeling of gene regulatory network using elephant swarm water search algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandal, Sudip; Saha, Goutam; Pal, Rajat Kumar

    2017-08-01

    Correct inference of genetic regulations inside a cell from the biological database like time series microarray data is one of the greatest challenges in post genomic era for biologists and researchers. Recurrent Neural Network (RNN) is one of the most popular and simple approach to model the dynamics as well as to infer correct dependencies among genes. Inspired by the behavior of social elephants, we propose a new metaheuristic namely Elephant Swarm Water Search Algorithm (ESWSA) to infer Gene Regulatory Network (GRN). This algorithm is mainly based on the water search strategy of intelligent and social elephants during drought, utilizing the different types of communication techniques. Initially, the algorithm is tested against benchmark small and medium scale artificial genetic networks without and with presence of different noise levels and the efficiency was observed in term of parametric error, minimum fitness value, execution time, accuracy of prediction of true regulation, etc. Next, the proposed algorithm is tested against the real time gene expression data of Escherichia Coli SOS Network and results were also compared with others state of the art optimization methods. The experimental results suggest that ESWSA is very efficient for GRN inference problem and performs better than other methods in many ways.

  6. Increased release of fermentable sugars from elephant grass by enzymatic hydrolysis in the presence of surfactants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Menegol, Daiane; Scholl, Angélica Luisi; Fontana, Roselei Claudete; Dillon, Aldo José Pinheiro; Camassola, Marli

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Milling is an attractive method to enhance the enzymatic hydrolysis of biomass. • Surfactants improve the efficiency of lignocellulose enzymatic hydrolysis. • Pretreatment with NaOH, smaller particle size and Tween 80® were more efficient. - Abstract: In the search for renewable energy sources, elephant grass is an alternative substrate for ethanol production, but this substrate must be hydrolyzed by cellulases and xylanases to liberate fermentable sugars. During enzymatic hydrolysis, cellulase activity is reduced by the irreversible adsorption of cellulase onto cellulose, decreasing the rate of hydrolysis. Adding surfactants during hydrolysis can improve the process. The effects of Tween® and Triton® surfactants on the enzymatic hydrolysis of elephant grass were evaluated in this context. The data indicate that pretreatment with sodium hydroxide, along with a smaller particle size (0.075–0.152 mm) and the use of Tween 80®, increased the efficiency of releasing reducing sugars from pretreated elephant grass biomass. Thus, it is possible to reduce grinding costs in second-generation ethanol production through the use of surfactants, as they allow efficient hydrolysis of larger biomass particles

  7. Extended aortic repair using frozen elephant trunk technique for Marfan syndrome with acute aortic dissection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uchida, Naomichi; Katayama, Akira; Kuraoka, Masatsugu; Katayama, Keijiro; Takahashi, Shinya; Takasaki, Taiichi; Sueda, Taijiro

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to analyze midterm results of frozen elephant trunk technique for Marfan syndrome with acute aortic dissection. Between February 1999 and August 2011 we performed arch replacement uisng frozen elephant trunk technique for acute aortic dissection in 8 patients with Marfan syndrome containing two complicated type B dissections and six type A dissections.Five patients compromised annulo-aortic ectasia who performed Bentall operation. No patients died in the initial operation. Fate of false lumen on the stent graft border was expressed by CT scan follow-up that were patent in 0, thrombosis in 5 and absorption in 3 patients. One patient who had new aortic dissection 8 years after initial surgery required the Crawford V operation. Ten-years-survival rate was 100% and ten years-event free rate was 67%. Frozen elephant trunk technique was feasible for Marfan syndrome with acute aortic dissection and might become alternative prophylactic treatment to the downstream aorta for acute aortic dissection.

  8. Kinetic study of the catalytic pyrolysis of elephant grass using Ti-MCM-41

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fontes, Maria do Socorro Braga; Melo, Dulce Maria de Araujo; Rodrigues, Glicelia, E-mail: socorro.fontes@yahoo.com.br [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal, RN (Brazil); Barros, Joana Maria de Farias [Universidade Federal de Campina Grande (UFCG), Cuite, PB (Brazil). Dept. de Quimica; Braga, Renata Martins [Universidade Federal da Paraiba (UFPB/CEAR/DEER), Joao Pessoa, PB (Brazil). Centro de Energias Alternativas e Renovaveis. Dept. de Engenharia de Energia Renovaveis

    2014-08-15

    This work aimed to study the kinetics of thermal and catalytic pyrolysis using Ti-MCM-41 as catalyst in order to assess the catalytic pyrolysis efficiency compared to thermal pyrolysis of elephant grass. Ti-MCM-41 molecular sieve was synthesized by hydrothermal method from hydrogel with the following molar composition: 1.00 CTMABr: 4.00 SiO{sub 2}:X TiO{sub 2}: 1 + X Na{sub 2}O: 200.00 H{sub 2}O, which structure template used was cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTMABr). The materials synthesized were characterized by X-ray diffraction, IR spectroscopy, thermogravimetric analysis and specific area by the BET method, for subsequent application in the biomass pyrolysis process. The kinetic models proposed by Vyazovkin and Flynn-Wall were used to determine the apparent activation energy involved in the thermal and catalytic pyrolysis of elephant grass and the results showed that the catalyst used was effective in reducing the apparent activation energy involved in the thermal decomposition of elephant grass. (author)

  9. Prediction of genetic gains by selection indices using mixed models in elephant grass for energy purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, V B; Daher, R F; Araújo, M S B; Souza, Y P; Cassaro, S; Menezes, B R S; Gravina, L M; Novo, A A C; Tardin, F D; Júnior, A T Amaral

    2017-09-27

    Genetically improved cultivars of elephant grass need to be adapted to different ecosystems with a faster growth speed and lower seasonality of biomass production over the year. This study aimed to use selection indices using mixed models (REML/BLUP) for selecting families and progenies within full-sib families of elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum) for biomass production. One hundred and twenty full-sib progenies were assessed from 2014 to 2015 in a randomized block design with three replications. During this period, the traits dry matter production, the number of tillers, plant height, stem diameter, and neutral detergent fiber were assessed. Families 3 and 1 were the best classified, being the most indicated for selection effect. Progenies 40, 45, 46, and 49 got the first positions in the three indices assessed in the first cut. The gain for individual 40 was 161.76% using Mulamba and Mock index. The use of selection indices using mixed models is advantageous in elephant grass since they provide high gains with the selection, which are distributed among all the assessed traits in the most appropriate situation to breeding programs.

  10. The Influence of Rainfall, Vegetation, Elephants and People on Fire Frequency of Miombo Woodlands, Northern Mozambique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, N. S.; Okin, G. S.; Shugart, H. H.; Swap, R. J.

    2008-12-01

    Miombo woodlands are important in southern Africa as they occupy over 50% of the land and, their good and services support a large proportion of people in the region. Anthropogenic fires occur in miombo every year especially in the dry season (May - October). This study explores the influence of annual rainfall, elephant density, human density and corridors, and vegetation on the fire frequency. It was carried out in Niassa Reserve located in northern Mozambique, the largest and more pristine conservation area of miombo woodlands in the world. We used a time series analysis and statistical t-test of MODIS-derived Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) to explore the relationship between biomass and fire frequency. The influence of rainfall, elephants, people and vegetation on fire return was explored using a stepwise logistic regression analysis. The results of this study indicate that fire frequency is higher in places with high biomass at beginning of the dry season. In these areas fire seems to be more intense and to strongly reduce biomass in the late dry season. Land cover is the strongest predictor of fire frequency, but elephant density, annual rainfall and human corridors are also important.

  11. Anatomy, histology and elemental profile of long bones and ribs of the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nganvongpanit, Korakot; Siengdee, Puntita; Buddhachat, Kittisak; Brown, Janine L; Klinhom, Sarisa; Pitakarnnop, Tanita; Angkawanish, Taweepoke; Thitaram, Chatchote

    2017-09-01

    This study evaluated the morphology and elemental composition of Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) bones (humerus, radius, ulna, femur, tibia, fibula and rib). Computerized tomography was used to image the intraosseous structure, compact bones were processed using histological techniques, and elemental profiling of compact bone was conducted using X-ray fluorescence. There was no clear evidence of an open marrow cavity in any of the bones; rather, dense trabecular bone was found in the bone interior. Compact bone contained double osteons in the radius, tibia and fibula. The osteon structure was comparatively large and similar in all bones, although the lacuna area was greater (P < 0.05) in the femur and ulna. Another finding was that nutrient foramina were clearly present in the humerus, ulna, femur, tibia and rib. Twenty elements were identified in elephant compact bone. Of these, ten differed significantly across the seven bones: Ca, Ti, V, Mn, Fe, Zr, Ag, Cd, Sn and Sb. Of particular interest was the finding of a significantly larger proportion of Fe in the humerus, radius, fibula and ribs, all bones without an open medullary cavity, which is traditionally associated with bone marrow for blood cell production. In conclusion, elephant bones present special characteristics, some of which may be important to hematopoiesis and bone strength for supporting a heavy body weight.

  12. 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.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  13. Deep-ocean foraging northern elephant seals bioaccumulate persistent organic pollutants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peterson, Sarah H.; Peterson, Michael G.; Debier, Cathy; Covaci, Adrian; Dirtu, Alin C.; Malarvannan, Govindan; Crocker, Daniel E.; Schwarz, Lisa K.; Costa, Daniel P.

    2015-01-01

    As top predators in the northeast Pacific Ocean, northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) are vulnerable to bioaccumulation of persistent organic pollutants (POPs). Our study examined a suite of POPs in blubber (inner and outer) and blood (serum) of free-ranging northern elephant seals. For adult females (N = 24), we satellite tracked and sampled the same seals before and after their approximately seven month long foraging trip. For males, we sampled different adults and sub-adults before (N = 14) and after (N = 15) the same foraging trip. For females, we calculated blubber burdens for all compounds. The highest POP concentrations in males and females were found for ∑ DDTs and ∑ PCBs. In blubber and serum, males had significantly greater concentrations than females for almost all compounds. For males and females, ∑ DDT and ∑ PBDEs were highly correlated in blubber and serum. While ∑ PCBs were highly correlated with ∑ DDTs and ∑ PBDEs in blubber and serum for males, ∑ PCBs showed weaker correlations with both compounds in females. As females gained mass while foraging, concentrations of nearly all POPs in inner and outer blubber significantly decreased; however, the absolute burden in blubber significantly increased, indicating ingestion of contaminants while foraging. Additionally, we identified three clusters of seal foraging behavior, based on geography, diving behavior, and stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes, which corresponded with differences in ∑ DDTs, ∑ PBDEs, MeO-BDE 47, as well as the ratio of ∑ DDTs to ∑ PCBs, indicating the potential for behavior to heighten or mitigate contaminant exposure. The greatest concentrations of ∑ DDTs and ∑ PBDEs were observed in the cluster that foraged closer to the coast and had blood samples more enriched in 13 C. Bioaccumulation of POPs by elephant seals supports mesopelagic food webs as a sink for POPs and highlights elephant seals as a potential sentinel of contamination in deep

  14. Isolation and culture of primary adult skin fibroblasts from the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus

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    Puntita Siengdee

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background Primary cultures from Asian elephants (Elephas maximus allow scientists to obtain representative cells that have conserved most of their original characteristics, function, physiology and biochemistry. This technique has thus gained significant importance as a foundation for further cellular, cell biology and molecular research. Therefore, the aim of this study was to describe conditions for the successful establishment of primary adult fibroblasts from Asian elephant carcasses. Methods Ear tissue sample collection from Asian elephant carcasses and our recommendations are given. We describe here a simple modified protocol for successful isolation and maintenance of primary adult fibroblasts from elephant ear skin. Ear samples from each individual (five 3 × 3 cm2 pieces were brought to the laboratory within 3 h after collection, kept in transportation medium at 0–4 °C. The ear tissues were prepared by a combination of 10% collagenase type II digestion procedure together with a simple explant procedure. Primary fibroblasts were cultured at 37 °C in Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium (DMEM with 20% fetal calf serum (FCS in a humidified atmosphere containing 5% CO2. After the third passage, fibroblasts were routinely trypsinized with 0.25% trypsin/EDTA and cultured in DMEM with 10% FCS at 37 °C and 5% CO2. Traditional cell counting method was used to measure cell viability and growth curve. Long-term storage of cells used freezing medium consisting of 40% FCS (v/v. Results We explored the most suitable conditions during sample collection (post-mortem storage time and sample storage temperature, which is the most important step in determining primary outgrowth. Our study successfully established and cultured primary adult skin fibroblasts obtained from post-mortem E. maximus ear skin tissues from six carcasses, with a success rate of around 83.3%. Outgrowth could be seen 4–12 days after explantation, and epithelial

  15. Deep-ocean foraging northern elephant seals bioaccumulate persistent organic pollutants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peterson, Sarah H., E-mail: sarahpeterson23@gmail.com [Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz, 100 Shaffer Road, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (United States); Peterson, Michael G. [Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, University of California, Berkeley, 130 Mulford Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States); Debier, Cathy [Institut des Sciences de la Vie, Université catholique de Louvain, Croix du Sud 2/L7.05.08, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium); Covaci, Adrian [Toxicological Center, Campus Drie Eiken, Universiteit Antwerpen, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk (Belgium); Dirtu, Alin C. [Toxicological Center, Campus Drie Eiken, Universiteit Antwerpen, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk (Belgium); Department of Chemistry, “Al. I. Cuza” University of Iasi, 700506 Iasi (Romania); Malarvannan, Govindan [Toxicological Center, Campus Drie Eiken, Universiteit Antwerpen, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk (Belgium); Crocker, Daniel E. [Department of Biology, Sonoma State University, 1801 East Cotati Ave, Rohnert Park, CA 94928 (United States); Schwarz, Lisa K. [Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz, 100 Shaffer Road, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (United States); Costa, Daniel P. [Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz, 100 Shaffer Road, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (United States)

    2015-11-15

    As top predators in the northeast Pacific Ocean, northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) are vulnerable to bioaccumulation of persistent organic pollutants (POPs). Our study examined a suite of POPs in blubber (inner and outer) and blood (serum) of free-ranging northern elephant seals. For adult females (N = 24), we satellite tracked and sampled the same seals before and after their approximately seven month long foraging trip. For males, we sampled different adults and sub-adults before (N = 14) and after (N = 15) the same foraging trip. For females, we calculated blubber burdens for all compounds. The highest POP concentrations in males and females were found for ∑ DDTs and ∑ PCBs. In blubber and serum, males had significantly greater concentrations than females for almost all compounds. For males and females, ∑ DDT and ∑ PBDEs were highly correlated in blubber and serum. While ∑ PCBs were highly correlated with ∑ DDTs and ∑ PBDEs in blubber and serum for males, ∑ PCBs showed weaker correlations with both compounds in females. As females gained mass while foraging, concentrations of nearly all POPs in inner and outer blubber significantly decreased; however, the absolute burden in blubber significantly increased, indicating ingestion of contaminants while foraging. Additionally, we identified three clusters of seal foraging behavior, based on geography, diving behavior, and stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes, which corresponded with differences in ∑ DDTs, ∑ PBDEs, MeO-BDE 47, as well as the ratio of ∑ DDTs to ∑ PCBs, indicating the potential for behavior to heighten or mitigate contaminant exposure. The greatest concentrations of ∑ DDTs and ∑ PBDEs were observed in the cluster that foraged closer to the coast and had blood samples more enriched in {sup 13}C. Bioaccumulation of POPs by elephant seals supports mesopelagic food webs as a sink for POPs and highlights elephant seals as a potential sentinel of contamination in

  16. Monitoring great ape and elephant abundance at large spatial scales: measuring effectiveness of a conservation landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma J Stokes

    Full Text Available Protected areas are fundamental to biodiversity conservation, but there is growing recognition of the need to extend beyond protected areas to meet the ecological requirements of species at larger scales. Landscape-scale conservation requires an evaluation of management impact on biodiversity under different land-use strategies; this is challenging and there exist few empirical studies. In a conservation landscape in northern Republic of Congo we demonstrate the application of a large-scale monitoring program designed to evaluate the impact of conservation interventions on three globally threatened species: western gorillas, chimpanzees and forest elephants, under three land-use types: integral protection, commercial logging, and community-based natural resource management. We applied distance-sampling methods to examine species abundance across different land-use types under varying degrees of management and human disturbance. We found no clear trends in abundance between land-use types. However, units with interventions designed to reduce poaching and protect habitats--irrespective of land-use type--harboured all three species at consistently higher abundance than a neighbouring logging concession undergoing no wildlife management. We applied Generalized-Additive Models to evaluate a priori predictions of species response to different landscape processes. Our results indicate that, given adequate protection from poaching, elephants and gorillas can profit from herbaceous vegetation in recently logged forests and maintain access to ecologically important resources located outside of protected areas. However, proximity to the single integrally protected area in the landscape maintained an overriding positive influence on elephant abundance, and logging roads--even subject to anti-poaching controls--were exploited by elephant poachers and had a major negative influence on elephant distribution. Chimpanzees show a clear preference for unlogged or

  17. Evolutionary and demographic processes shaping geographic patterns of genetic diversity in a keystone species, the African forest elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishida, Yasuko; Gugala, Natalie A; Georgiadis, Nicholas J; Roca, Alfred L

    2018-05-01

    The past processes that have shaped geographic patterns of genetic diversity may be difficult to infer from current patterns. However, in species with sex differences in dispersal, differing phylogeographic patterns between mitochondrial (mt) and nuclear (nu) DNA may provide contrasting insights into past events. Forest elephants ( Loxodonta cyclotis ) were impacted by climate and habitat change during the Pleistocene, which likely shaped phylogeographic patterns in mitochondrial (mt) DNA that have persisted due to limited female dispersal. By contrast, the nuclear (nu) DNA phylogeography of forest elephants in Central Africa has not been determined. We therefore examined the population structure of Central African forest elephants by genotyping 94 individuals from six localities at 21 microsatellite loci. Between forest elephants in western and eastern Congolian forests, there was only modest genetic differentiation, a pattern highly discordant with that of mtDNA. Nuclear genetic patterns are consistent with isolation by distance. Alternatively, male-mediated gene flow may have reduced the previous regional differentiation in Central Africa suggested by mtDNA patterns, which likely reflect forest fragmentation during the Pleistocene. In species like elephants, male-mediated gene flow erases the nuclear genetic signatures of past climate and habitat changes, but these continue to persist as patterns in mtDNA because females do not disperse. Conservation implications of these results are discussed.

  18. Major P.J. Pretorius and the decimation of the Addo elephant herd in 1919-1920: important reassessments

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    M.T. Hoffman

    1993-09-01

    Full Text Available Between June 1919 and August 1920, the largest population of elephants in South Africa at the time was reduced from about 130 to 16 individuals by one man. Major P. J. Pretorius. Conflict between farmers and the elephants over dwindling water resources, coupled with the threat that the elephants posed to the future agricultural development of the region, precipitated the Provincial Administration's extermination order. Major Pretorius' figure of "120-odd" elephants killed during the year is reasonably accurate and the fate of the animal products is traced. Most of the skins were processed, by Pretorius himself, to make whips. A few specimens can be traced to local and overseas museums. Because records of the sex and age of animals killed by Major Pretorius have either been lost or were never detailed, reconstruction of the Addo elephant herd before the decimation, is difficult. Finally, details of the alleged public debate are discussed. It is concluded that it was probably a handful of individuals that convinced the Provincial Administration to spare 16 animals. The Rev J.R.L. Kingon as well as Major Pretorius himself are two key figures in the debate. There is little evidence to confirm the view that a public outcry, in the modem sense of the word, stopped the killing. Six photographs are included as an appendix. They show Major Pretorius at work in the Addo Bush.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  20. 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

  1. Radiocarbon dating of seized ivory confirms rapid decline in African elephant populations and provides insight into illegal trade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerling, Thure E.; Barnette, Janet E.; Chesson, Lesley A.; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Gobush, Kathleen S.; Uno, Kevin T.; Wasser, Samuel K.; Xu, Xiaomei

    2016-11-01

    Carbon-14 measurements on 231 elephant ivory specimens from 14 large ivory seizures (≥0.5 ton) made between 2002 and 2014 show that most ivory (ca. 90%) was derived from animals that had died less than 3 y before ivory was confiscated. This indicates that the assumption of recent elephant death for mortality estimates of African elephants is correct: Very little “old” ivory is included in large ivory shipments from Africa. We found only one specimen of the 231 analyzed to have a lag time longer than 6 y. Patterns of trade differ by regions: East African ivory, based on genetic assignments of geographic origin, has a much higher fraction of “rapid” transit than ivory originating in the Tridom region of Cameroon-Gabon-Congo. Carbon-14 is an important tool in understanding patterns of movement of illegal wildlife products.

  2. Human Elephant Conflict in the Waza-Logone Region of Northern Cameroon: An Assessment of Management Effectiveness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tchamba, MN.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available An investigation into the current level of humanelephant conflicts in the Waza Logone region was carried out during the 2005 rainy season to assess the effectiveness of conflict management. This was done by talking mainly to wildlife authorities, the local agricultural service, the local communities and consulting sequential reports from the nearest enumerators. The number of villages affected was declining in the dry season compared to the rainy season crop raiding. However, general pattern indicates a decline in the number of villages impacted by elephants since the 1992 to 1993 surveys, but comparatively more damaging as shown by the estimated costs. Therefore, the improve in ecological management of the Waza National Park and its elephant population has had a positive impact in the number of villages crop raided but has not definitely resolved the conflicts between man and elephant. Other approaches are needed to buttress the effort been undertaken in the region to date.

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

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    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.

  4. Mistletoes, their host plants and the effects of browsing by large mammals in Addo Elephant National Park

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    J.J. Midgley

    1991-09-01

    Full Text Available There are at least four plant hemiparasites [=mistletoes, viz. Viscaceae (3 species, Loranthaceae (1 species] within the Addo Elephant National Park. Highly selective utilisation of these plant parasites by large browsing animals has resulted in severe decline of these plants within the elephant enclosure. The parasites are often associated with spinescent host plants. We suggest this has less to do with escaping herbivory by large mammals and more to do with spinescent plants being optimum hosts because they are a richer nutritient source for plant parasites than most non-spinescent plants.

  5. ELEPHANT TRUNK” AND ENDOVASCULAR STENTGRAFTING – A HYBRID APPROACH TO THE TREATMENT OF EXTENSIVE THORACIC AORTIC ANEURYSM

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    Tomáš Holubec

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A hybrid approach to elephant trunk technique for treatment of thoracic aortic aneurysms combines a conventional surgical and endovascular therapy. Compared to surgery alone, there is a presumption that mortality and morbidity is reduced. We present a case report of a 42-year-old man with a giant aneurysm of the entire thoracic aorta, significant aortic and tricuspid regurgitation and ventricular septum defect. The patient underwent multiple consecutive operations and interventions having, among others, finally replaced the entire thoracic aorta with the use of the hybrid elephant trunk technique.

  6. Automatic detection of potentially illegal online sales of elephant ivory via data mining

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julio Hernandez-Castro

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available In this work, we developed an automated system to detect potentially illegal elephant ivory items for sale on eBay. Two law enforcement experts, with specific knowledge of elephant ivory identification, manually classified items on sale in the Antiques section of eBay UK over an 8 week period. This set the “Gold Standard” that we aim to emulate using data-mining. We achieved close to 93% accuracy with less data than the experts, as we relied entirely on metadata, but did not employ item descriptions or associated images, thus proving the potential and generality of our approach. The reported accuracy may be improved with the addition of text mining techniques for the analysis of the item description, and by applying image classification for the detection of Schreger lines, indicative of elephant ivory. However, any solution relying on images or text description could not be employed on other wildlife illegal markets where pictures can be missing or misleading and text absent (e.g., Instagram. In our setting, we gave human experts all available information while only using minimal information for our analysis. Despite this, we succeeded at achieving a very high accuracy. This work is an important first step in speeding up the laborious, tedious and expensive task of expert discovery of illegal trade over the internet. It will also allow for faster reporting to law enforcement and better accountability. We hope this will also contribute to reducing poaching, by making this illegal trade harder and riskier for those involved.

  7. Neurofibromatosis type 1 and the "elephant man's" disease: the confusion persists: an ethnographic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legendre, Claire-Marie; Charpentier-Côté, Catherine; Drouin, Régen; Bouffard, Chantal

    2011-02-09

    In 1986, two Canadian geneticists had demonstrated that Joseph Merrick, better known as the Elephant Man, suffered from the Proteus syndrome and not from neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), as was alleged by dermatologist Parkes in 1909. Despite this and although the two diseases differ at several levels: prevalence, diagnostic criteria, clinical manifestations and transmission, the confusion between NF1 and the "elephant man's" disease continues in medical and social representations by current linguistic usage, and in some media reports. With this article, we want to 1) document the persistence and extent of this fallacy, 2) identify certain critical factors that contribute to its persistence, and 3) evaluate its impact on the health and well being of patients with NF1 and their family members. Participant observation in the course of an ethnographic study on intergenerational dialogue between individuals with neurofibromatosis and their parents - Analysis of the scientific literature and of pinpoint articles in the print and online news media. Our findings show that because physicians have little knowledge about NF1, several print and online news media and a lot of physicians continue to make the confusion between NF1 and the disease the "elephant man". This misconception contributes to misinformation about the disease, feeding prejudices against affected patients, exacerbating the negative impacts of the disease on their quality of life, their cognitive development, their reproductive choices, as well as depriving them of proper care and appropriate genetic counseling. If family physicians and pediatricians were properly informed about the disease, they could refer their patients with NF1 to NF clinics and to specialists. Thus, patients and their family members would benefit from better-tailored clinical management of their cases, perhaps even optimal management. [corrected

  8. Neurofibromatosis type 1 and the "elephant man's" disease: the confusion persists: an ethnographic study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire-Marie Legendre

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available In 1986, two Canadian geneticists had demonstrated that Joseph Merrick, better known as the Elephant Man, suffered from the Proteus syndrome and not from neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1, as was alleged by dermatologist Parkes in 1909. Despite this and although the two diseases differ at several levels: prevalence, diagnostic criteria, clinical manifestations and transmission, the confusion between NF1 and the "elephant man's" disease continues in medical and social representations by current linguistic usage, and in some media reports. With this article, we want to 1 document the persistence and extent of this fallacy, 2 identify certain critical factors that contribute to its persistence, and 3 evaluate its impact on the health and well being of patients with NF1 and their family members.Participant observation in the course of an ethnographic study on intergenerational dialogue between individuals with neurofibromatosis and their parents - Analysis of the scientific literature and of pinpoint articles in the print and online news media.Our findings show that because physicians have little knowledge about NF1, several print and online news media and a lot of physicians continue to make the confusion between NF1 and the disease the "elephant man". This misconception contributes to misinformation about the disease, feeding prejudices against affected patients, exacerbating the negative impacts of the disease on their quality of life, their cognitive development, their reproductive choices, as well as depriving them of proper care and appropriate genetic counseling.If family physicians and pediatricians were properly informed about the disease, they could refer their patients with NF1 to NF clinics and to specialists. Thus, patients and their family members would benefit from better-tailored clinical management of their cases, perhaps even optimal management. [corrected

  9. A standardised faecal collection protocol for intestinal helminth egg counts in Asian elephants, Elephas maximus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carly L. Lynsdale

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The quantitative assessment of parasite infection is necessary to measure, manage and reduce infection risk in both wild and captive animal populations. Traditional faecal flotation methods which aim to quantify parasite burden, such as the McMaster egg counting technique, are widely used in veterinary medicine, agricultural management and wildlife parasitology. Although many modifications to the McMaster method exist, few account for systematic variation in parasite egg output which may lead to inaccurate estimations of infection intensity through faecal egg counts (FEC. To adapt the McMaster method for use in sampling Asian elephants (Elephas maximus, we tested a number of possible sources of error regarding faecal sampling, focussing on helminth eggs and using a population of over 120 semi-captive elephants distributed across northern Myanmar. These included time of day of defecation, effects of storage in 10% formalin and 10% formol saline and variation in egg distribution between and within faecal boluses. We found no significant difference in the distribution of helminth eggs within faecal matter or for different defecation times, however, storage in formol saline and formalin significantly decreased egg recovery. This is the first study to analyse several collection and storage aspects of a widely-used traditional parasitology method for helminth parasites of E. maximus using known host individuals. We suggest that for the modified McMaster technique, a minimum of one fresh sample per elephant collected from any freshly produced bolus in the total faecal matter and at any point within a 7.5 h time period (7.30am–2.55 pm will consistently represent parasite load. This study defines a protocol which may be used to test pre-analytic factors and effectively determine infection load in species which produce large quantities of vegetative faeces, such as non-ruminant megaherbivores.

  10. Oxygen minimum zone: An important oceanographic habitat for deep-diving northern elephant seals, Mirounga angustirostris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naito, Yasuhiko; Costa, Daniel P; Adachi, Taiki; Robinson, Patrick W; Peterson, Sarah H; Mitani, Yoko; Takahashi, Akinori

    2017-08-01

    Little is known about the foraging behavior of top predators in the deep mesopelagic ocean. Elephant seals dive to the deep biota-poor oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) (>800 m depth) despite high diving costs in terms of energy and time, but how they successfully forage in the OMZ remains largely unknown. Assessment of their feeding rate is the key to understanding their foraging behavior, but this has been challenging. Here, we assessed the feeding rate of 14 female northern elephant seals determined by jaw motion events (JME) and dive cycle time to examine how feeding rates varied with dive depth, particularly in the OMZ. We also obtained video footage from seal-mounted videos to understand their feeding in the OMZ. While the diel vertical migration pattern was apparent for most depths of the JME, some very deep dives, beyond the normal diel depth ranges, occurred episodically during daylight hours. The midmesopelagic zone was the main foraging zone for all seals. Larger seals tended to show smaller numbers of JME and lower feeding rates than smaller seals during migration, suggesting that larger seals tended to feed on larger prey to satisfy their metabolic needs. Larger seals also dived frequently to the deep OMZ, possibly because of a greater diving ability than smaller seals, suggesting their dependency on food in the deeper depth zones. Video observations showed that seals encountered the rarely reported ragfish ( Icosteus aenigmaticus ) in the depths of the OMZ, which failed to show an escape response from the seals, suggesting that low oxygen concentrations might reduce prey mobility. Less mobile prey in OMZ would enhance the efficiency of foraging in this zone, especially for large seals that can dive deeper and longer. We suggest that the OMZ plays an important role in structuring the mesopelagic ecosystem and for the survival and evolution of elephant seals.

  11. Short-term and delayed effects of mother death on calf mortality in Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    Long-lived, highly social species with prolonged offspring dependency can show long postreproductive periods. The Mother hypothesis proposes that a need for extended maternal care of offspring together with increased maternal mortality risk associated with old age select for such postreproductive survival, but tests in species with long postreproductive periods, other than humans and marine mammals, are lacking. Here, we investigate the Mother hypothesis with longitudinal data on Asian elephants from timber camps of Myanmar 1) to determine the costs of reproduction on female age-specific mortality risk within 1 year after calving and 2) to quantify the effects of mother loss on calf survival across development. We found that older females did not show an increased immediate mortality risk after calving. Calves had a 10-fold higher mortality risk in their first year if they lost their mother, but this decreased with age to only a 1.1-fold higher risk in the fifth year. We also detected delayed effects of maternal death: calves losing their mother during early ages still suffered from increased mortality risk at ages 3-4 and during adolescence but such effects were weaker in magnitude. Consequently, the Mother hypothesis could account for the first 5 years of postreproductive survival, but there were no costs of continued reproduction on the immediate maternal mortality risk. However, the observed postreproductive lifespan of females surviving to old age commonly exceeds 5 years in Asian elephants, and further studies are thus needed to determine selection for (postreproductive) lifespan in elephants and other comparably long-lived species.

  12. Prolonged fasting activates Nrf2 in post-weaned elephant seals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vázquez-Medina, José Pablo; Soñanez-Organis, José G; Rodriguez, Ruben; Viscarra, Jose A; Nishiyama, Akira; Crocker, Daniel E; Ortiz, Rudy M

    2013-08-01

    Elephant seals naturally experience prolonged periods of absolute food and water deprivation (fasting). In humans, rats and mice, prolonged food deprivation activates the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) and increases oxidative damage. In elephant seals, prolonged fasting activates RAS without increasing oxidative damage likely due to an increase in antioxidant defenses. The mechanism leading to the upregulation of antioxidant defenses during prolonged fasting remains elusive. Therefore, we investigated whether prolonged fasting activates the redox-sensitive transcription factor Nrf2, which controls the expression of antioxidant genes, and if such activation is potentially mediated by systemic increases in RAS. Blood and skeletal muscle samples were collected from seals fasting for 1, 3, 5 and 7 weeks. Nrf2 activity and nuclear content increased by 76% and 167% at week 7. Plasma angiotensin II (Ang II) and transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) were 5000% and 250% higher at week 7 than at week 1. Phosphorylation of Smad2, an effector of Ang II and TGF signaling, increased by 120% at week 7 and by 84% in response to intravenously infused Ang II. NADPH oxidase 4 (Nox4) mRNA expression, which is controlled by smad proteins, increased 430% at week 7, while Nox4 protein expression, which can activate Nrf2, was 170% higher at week 7 than at week 1. These results demonstrate that prolonged fasting activates Nrf2 in elephant seals and that RAS stimulation can potentially result in increased Nox4 through Smad phosphorylation. The results also suggest that Nox4 is essential to sustain the hormetic adaptive response to oxidative stress in fasting seals.

  13. Is bigger better? The relationship between size and reproduction in female Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawley, J A H; Mumby, H S; Chapman, S N; Lahdenperä, M; Mar, K U; Htut, W; Thura Soe, A; Aung, H H; Lummaa, V

    2017-10-01

    The limited availability of resources is predicted to impose trade-offs between growth, reproduction and self-maintenance in animals. However, although some studies have shown that early reproduction suppresses growth, reproduction positively correlates with size in others. We use detailed records from a large population of semi-captive elephants in Myanmar to assess the relationships between size (height and weight), reproduction and survival in female Asian elephants, a species characterized by slow, costly life history. Although female height gain during the growth period overlapped little with reproductive onset in the population, there was large variation in age at first reproduction and only 81% of final weight had been reached by peak age of reproduction at the population level (19 years). Those females beginning reproduction early tended to be taller and lighter later in life, although these trends were not significant. We found that taller females were more likely to have reproduced by a given age, but such effects diminished with age, suggesting there may be a size threshold to reproduction which is especially important in young females. Because size was not linked with female survival during reproductive ages, the diminishing effect of height on reproduction with age is unlikely to be due to biased survival of larger females. We conclude that although reproduction may not always impose significant costs on growth, height may be a limiting factor to reproduction in young female Asian elephants, which could have important implications considering their birth rates are low and peak reproduction is young - 19 years in this population. © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  14. Fermentation characteristics and nutritional quality of elephant grass silage added the buriti fruit peel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raimundo Ribeiro Ferreira

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this research was to evaluated the inclusion of buriti fruit peel as additive on the fermentation profile, losses, chemical composition and degradability of elephant grass silage. We used a completely randomized design with five levels of buriti fruit peel (0, 50, 100, 200 and 400 g kg-1. The silos were opened after 28 days of storage. In situ degradability monitoring was conducted using a split-plot design in which four animals represented the blocks and silage supplemented with five levels of buriti fruit peel represented the treatments. The use of the additive in elephant silage increased dry matter (DM (P < 0.001, ether extract (EE (P < 0.001, ash (P < 0.001, neutral detergent fiber (NDF (P < 0.001 and acid detergent fiber (ADF (P= 0.0000. The pH (P= 0.0000, N-NH3 (P = 0.024 and there was a decrease in gas losses (P < 0.001, effluent losses and dry matter recovery (P = 0.218 not were influenced by the addition of buriti fruit peel. The inclusion of buriti fruit peel linearly reduced the ruminal degradability DM of soluble fraction (a (P < 0.001 and potentially degradable insoluble fraction (b (P < 0.001. The DM content increase with the addition of the buriti fruit peel to the elephant grass silage promotes improvements in the fermentation process, reduces losses of nutrients and ruminal disappearance of dry matter and does not significantly change the chemical composition with the inclusion of 166.7 g kg-1 of the buriti fruit peel.

  15. Experience with the conventional and frozen elephant trunk techniques: a single-centre study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leontyev, Sergey; Borger, Michael A; Etz, Christian D; Moz, Monica; Seeburger, Joerg; Bakhtiary, Farhard; Misfeld, Martin; Mohr, Friedrich W

    2013-12-01

    The treatment of patients with extensive thoracic aortic disease involving the arch and descending/thoracoabdominal aorta is often performed using an elephant trunk procedure. We retrospectively analysed our results comparing two different techniques: the conventional elephant trunk (cET) and the frozen elephant trunk (FET) operation. Between January 2003 and December 2011, 171 consecutive patients underwent total aortic arch replacement with either a cET (n = 125) or FET (n = 46) technique. The mean age was 64 ± 13 years and was significantly higher in the FET group (P 40 min was an independent predictor for permanent spinal cord injury (OR 5.0, 95% CI 1.1-20, P = 0.038). The estimated 1-, 3- and 5-year survival were 70 ± 4, 70 ± 4 and 68 ± 4% (cET) and 4 ± 7 and 60 ± 9, 40 ± 1% (FET), with mean survival time 5.2 ± 0.3 vs 3.8 ± 0.5 years (cET vs FET, log-rank P = 0.9). The FET procedure for extensive thoracic aortic disease is associated with an acceptable mortality rate, but with a higher incidence of perioperative spinal cord injury than cET. Arch replacement with a cET technique should be strongly considered in patients with expected prolonged circulatory arrest times, particularly if operated on under mild or moderate hypothermia. Axillary cannulation is associated with superior neurological outcomes and Type A acute aortic dissection is a risk factor for mortality and poor neurological outcomes in this patient population.

  16. Vertical Transmission of Social Roles Drives Resilience to Poaching in Elephant Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldenberg, Shifra Z; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Wittemyer, George

    2016-01-11

    Network resilience to perturbation is fundamental to functionality in systems ranging from synthetic communication networks to evolved social organization [1]. While theoretical work offers insight into causes of network robustness, examination of natural networks can identify evolved mechanisms of resilience and how they are related to the selective pressures driving structure. Female African elephants (Loxodonta africana) exhibit complex social networks with node heterogeneity in which older individuals serve as connectivity hubs [2, 3]. Recent ivory poaching targeting older elephants in a well-studied population has mirrored the targeted removal of highly connected nodes in the theoretical literature that leads to structural collapse [4, 5]. Here we tested the response of this natural network to selective knockouts. We find that the hierarchical network topology characteristic of elephant societies was highly conserved across the 16-year study despite ∼70% turnover in individual composition of the population. At a population level, the oldest available individuals persisted to fill socially central positions in the network. For analyses using known mother-daughter pairs, social positions of daughters during the disrupted period were predicted by those of their mothers in years prior, were unrelated to individual histories of family mortality, and were actively built. As such, daughters replicated the social network roles of their mothers, driving the observed network resilience. Our study provides a rare bridge between network theory and an evolved system, demonstrating social redundancy to be the mechanism by which resilience to perturbation occurred in this socially advanced species. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Variation in the composition of milk of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) throughout lactation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbondanza, Frances N; Power, Michael L; Dickson, Melissa A; Brown, Janine; Oftedal, Olav T

    2013-01-01

    We investigated milk nutrient composition from three Asian elephant cows over the first 3 years of lactation, including two consecutive lactations in one cow. Body mass gain is presented for three calves during the first year. Milk samples (n = 74) were analyzed for dry matter (DM), fat, crude protein (CP), sugar, ash, calcium (Ca), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K); gross energy (GE) was calculated. Concentrations of most nutrients changed over lactation: DM, fat, CP, Ca, P, and GE were positively correlated to calf age; sugar was negatively correlated to calf age. GE doubled between birth (1 kcal/g) and 2 years of age (2 kcal/g). After accounting for calf age, GE, fat, Ca, and P concentrations differed among the cows. Milk composition also differed between two lactations from the same cow. When milk nutrients were expressed on a mg per kcal basis, the pattern changes: CP, Ca, and P remained relatively constant over lactation on a per energy basis. Calf mass quadrupled over the first year of life; mass gain was linear at 0.9 kg/day. Asian elephant milk composition is variable, both across lactations and between cows, complicating efforts to determine representative values for comparative studies and for the formulation of elephant milk formulas. The fact that CP, Ca, and P were all relatively constant when expressed on a per energy basis may be of biological significance. The increase in nutrient density over lactation undoubtedly limits maternal water loss, reducing the volume of milk necessary to support the calf. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Ovulation, pregnancy, placentation and husbandry in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana)

    OpenAIRE

    Allen, W.R

    2006-01-01

    The African elephant reproduces so efficiently in the wild that overpopulation is now a serious problem in some game parks in Zimbabwe, Botswana and South Africa. The female reaches puberty between 10 and 12 years of age in the wild and, when in captivity, shows oestrous cycles of 14–15 weeks duration. She readily conceives a singleton in the wild yet her uterus has the capacity for twins. She shows a gestation length of 22 months and, in the wild, shows a population density and feed dependen...

  19. Composition of phytoplankton in the Bransfield Strait and Elephant Island during austral summer of 1999

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Sánchez

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The authors inform about the composition and distribution of phytoplanktonic community between the first 75 m of depth in Bransfield Strait y around the Elephant island, during the ANTAR X expedition in the 1999 Austral Summer (22nd–29th January 1999. The higher cellular concentration (500 cel/mL was given by the autotrophic nanoplankton, with a high density mainly on the bay stations and down the first 25 m of depth. Among the most representative species we have Leucocryptos marina, Phaeocystis antarctica, the Monadas and the pennate diatoms.

  20. The Executive and the Elephant A Leader's Guide for Achieving Inner Excellence

    CERN Document Server

    Daft, Richard L

    2010-01-01

    Lessons for leaders on resolving the ongoing struggle between instinct and the creative mind. Kings, heads of government, and corporate executives lead thousands of people and manage endless resources, but may not have mastery over themselves. Often leaders know that right action is important, but have little (if any) understanding of what prevents them from acting in accordance with their intentions. In this important book, leadership expert Richard Daft portrays this dilemma as a struggle between instinct (elephant) and intention (the executive) using the most current research on the intenti

  1. Generation and Analysis of Full-length cDNA Sequences from Elephant Shark (Callorhinchus milii)

    KAUST Repository

    Kodzius, Rimantas

    2009-03-17

    Cartilaginous fishes are the oldest living group of jawed vertebrates and therefore is an important group for understanding the evolution of vertebrate genomes including the human genome. Our laboratory has proposed elephant shark (C. milii) as a model cartilaginous fish genome because of its relatively small genome size (910 Mb). The whole genome of C. milii is being sequenced (first cartilaginous fish genome to be sequenced completely). To characterize the transcriptome of C. milii and to assist in annotating exon-intron boundaries, transcriptional start sites and alternatively spliced transcripts, we are generating full-length cDNA sequences from C. milii.

  2. Chemical compatibility study of Cooley L18KU, Herculite, and Elephant Mat with Hanford tank waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mercado, J.E.

    1998-01-01

    An independent chemical compatibility review of various wrapping and absorbent/padding materials was conducted to evaluate resistance to chemicals and constituents present in liquid waste from the Hanford underground tanks. These materials will be used to wrap long-length contaminated equipment when such equipment is removed from the tanks and prepared for transportation and subsequent disposal or storage. The materials studied were Cooley L18KU, Herculite, and Elephant Mat. The study concludes that these materials are appropriate for use in this application

  3. "Elephant trunk" and endovascular stentgrafting : a hybrid approach to the treatment of extensive thoracic aortic aneurysm

    OpenAIRE

    Holubec, Tomás; Raupach, Jan; Dominik, Jan; Vojácek, Jan

    2013-01-01

    A hybrid approach to elephant trunk technique for treatment of thoracic aortic aneurysms combines a conventional surgical and endovascular therapy. Compared to surgery alone, there is a presumption that mortality and morbidity is reduced. We present a case report of a 42-year-old man with a giant aneurysm of the entire thoracic aorta, significant aortic and tricuspid regurgitation and ventricular septum defect. The patient underwent multiple consecutive operations and interventions having, am...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. [Life cycle of Maupasina weissi Seurat, 1913, Subuluroidea Nematode, parasite of the elephant shrew (author's transl)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quentin, J C; Verdier, J M

    1979-01-01

    The life cycle of Maupasina weissi Seurat, 1913, the parasite of the elephant shrew, has been experimentally obtained from the intermediate host Locusta migratoria. The biology of this Nematoda is considered as being more primitive than the Subuluridae: -- egg maturation in external environment is in fact necessary to the Maupasina larvae to penetrate into the insect, -- The different localizations of the infective larvae, such as mesenteron regeneration crypta, fat body, demonstrate that the parasite is not completely adaptated to its intermediate host, -- the ontogenesis of cephalic structures is characterized by an hypertrophy of the archaic structures mainly from cuticular origin.

  6. Sequencing and analysis of full-length cDNAs, 5'-ESTs and 3'-ESTs from a cartilaginous fish, the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii).

    KAUST Repository

    Brenner, Sydney; Kodzius, Rimantas; Tan, Yue Ying; Tay, Alice; Tay, Boon-Hui; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2012-01-01

    Cartilaginous fishes are the most ancient group of living jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes) and are, therefore, an important reference group for understanding the evolution of vertebrates. The elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii), a holocephalan cartilaginous fish, has been identified as a model cartilaginous fish genome because of its compact genome (∼910 Mb) and a genome project has been initiated to obtain its whole genome sequence. In this study, we have generated and sequenced full-length enriched cDNA libraries of the elephant shark using the 'oligo-capping' method and Sanger sequencing. A total of 6,778 full-length protein-coding cDNA and 10,701 full-length noncoding cDNA were sequenced from six tissues (gills, intestine, kidney, liver, spleen, and testis) of the elephant shark. Analysis of their polyadenylation signals showed that polyadenylation usage in elephant shark is similar to that in mammals. Furthermore, both coding and noncoding transcripts of the elephant shark use the same proportion of canonical polyadenylation sites. Besides BLASTX searches, protein-coding transcripts were annotated by Gene Ontology, InterPro domain, and KEGG pathway analyses. By comparing elephant shark genes to bony vertebrate genes, we identified several ancient genes present in elephant shark but differentially lost in tetrapods or teleosts. Only ∼6% of elephant shark noncoding cDNA showed similarity to known noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs). The rest are either highly divergent ncRNAs or novel ncRNAs. In addition to full-length transcripts, 30,375 5'-ESTs and 41,317 3'-ESTs were sequenced and annotated. The clones and transcripts generated in this study are valuable resources for annotating transcription start sites, exon-intron boundaries, and UTRs of genes in the elephant shark genome, and for the functional characterization of protein sequences. These resources will also be useful for annotating genes in other cartilaginous fishes whose genomes have been targeted for whole

  7. Physiological stress responses in wild Asian elephants Elephas maximus in a human-dominated landscape in the Western Ghats, southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vijayakrishnan, Sreedhar; Kumar, Mavatur Ananda; Umapathy, G; Kumar, Vinod; Sinha, Anindya

    2018-05-16

    Increasing anthropogenic pressures on forests, especially in the tropical regions of the world, have restricted several large mammalian species such as the Asian elephant to fragmented habitats within human-dominated landscapes. In this study, we assessed the effects of an anthropogenic landscape and its associated conflict with humans on the physiological stress responses displayed by Asian elephants in the Anamalai Hills of the Western Ghats mountains in south India. We have quantified faecal glucocorticoid metabolite (FGM) concentrations in focal individual elephants within and across herds, inhabiting both anthropogenic and natural habitats, and evaluated their physiological responses to different socio-ecological situations between November 2013 and April 2014. Physiological stress responses varied significantly among the tested elephant age- and sex categories but not across different types of social organisation. Adults generally showed higher FGM concentrations, even in the absence of stressors, than did any other age category. Males also appeared to have higher stress responses than did females. Although there was no significant variation in mean stress levels between elephants on the plateau in the absence of human interactions and those in adjacent, relatively undisturbed forest habitats, FGM concentrations increased significantly for adult and subadult individuals as well as for calves following drives, during which elephants were driven off aggressively by people. Our study emphasises the general importance of understanding individual variation in physiology and behaviour within a population of a seriously threatened mammalian species, the Asian elephant, and specifically highlights the need for long-term monitoring of the stress physiology and behavioural responses of individual elephants across both human-dominated and natural landscapes. Such studies would not only provide comprehensive insights into the adaptive biology of elephants in changing

  8. Sequencing and analysis of full-length cDNAs, 5'-ESTs and 3'-ESTs from a cartilaginous fish, the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii).

    KAUST Repository

    Brenner, Sydney

    2012-10-08

    Cartilaginous fishes are the most ancient group of living jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes) and are, therefore, an important reference group for understanding the evolution of vertebrates. The elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii), a holocephalan cartilaginous fish, has been identified as a model cartilaginous fish genome because of its compact genome (∼910 Mb) and a genome project has been initiated to obtain its whole genome sequence. In this study, we have generated and sequenced full-length enriched cDNA libraries of the elephant shark using the \\'oligo-capping\\' method and Sanger sequencing. A total of 6,778 full-length protein-coding cDNA and 10,701 full-length noncoding cDNA were sequenced from six tissues (gills, intestine, kidney, liver, spleen, and testis) of the elephant shark. Analysis of their polyadenylation signals showed that polyadenylation usage in elephant shark is similar to that in mammals. Furthermore, both coding and noncoding transcripts of the elephant shark use the same proportion of canonical polyadenylation sites. Besides BLASTX searches, protein-coding transcripts were annotated by Gene Ontology, InterPro domain, and KEGG pathway analyses. By comparing elephant shark genes to bony vertebrate genes, we identified several ancient genes present in elephant shark but differentially lost in tetrapods or teleosts. Only ∼6% of elephant shark noncoding cDNA showed similarity to known noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs). The rest are either highly divergent ncRNAs or novel ncRNAs. In addition to full-length transcripts, 30,375 5\\'-ESTs and 41,317 3\\'-ESTs were sequenced and annotated. The clones and transcripts generated in this study are valuable resources for annotating transcription start sites, exon-intron boundaries, and UTRs of genes in the elephant shark genome, and for the functional characterization of protein sequences. These resources will also be useful for annotating genes in other cartilaginous fishes whose genomes have been targeted for

  9. Resource wars and conflict ivory: the impact of civil conflict on elephants in the Democratic Republic of Congo--the case of the Okapi Reserve.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rene L Beyers

    Full Text Available Human conflict generally has substantial negative impacts on wildlife and conservation. The recent civil war (1995-2006 in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC resulted in a significant loss of wildlife, including elephants, due to institutional collapse, lawlessness and unbridled exploitation of natural resources such as minerals, wood, ivory and bushmeat. We used data from distance sampling surveys conducted before and after the war in a protected forest, the Okapi Faunal Reserve, to document changes in elephant abundance and distribution. We employed Generalized Additive Models to relate changes in elephant distribution to human and environmental factors. Populations declined by nearly fifty percent coinciding with a major increase in elephant poaching as indicated by reports of ivory trade during the war. Our results suggest that humans influenced elephant distribution far more than habitat, both before and after the war, but post-war models explained more of the variation. Elephant abundance declined more, closer to the park boundary and to areas of intense human activity. After the war, elephant densities were relatively higher in the centre of the park where they were better protected, suggesting that this area may have acted as a refuge. In other sites in Eastern DRC, where no protection was provided, elephants were even more decimated. Post-war dynamics, such as weakened institutions, human movements and availability of weapons, continue to affect elephants. Survival of remaining populations and recovery will be determined by these persistent factors and by new threats associated with growing human populations and exploitation of natural resources. Prioritizing wildlife protection, curbing illegal trade in ivory and bushmeat, and strengthening national institutions and organizations in charge of conservation will be crucial to counter these threats.

  10. A Spanner in the Works: Human–Elephant Conflict Complicates the Food–Water–Energy Nexus in Drylands of Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mwangi Githiru

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The two major conservation issues for drylands of Africa are habitat loss or degradation and habitat fragmentation, largely from agriculture, charcoal production, and infrastructural development. A key question for management is how these landscapes can retain their critical ecological functions and services, while simultaneously supporting resilient livelihoods. It is a clear nexus question involving food (agriculture, water, and energy (fuelwood, which is complicated by human–wildlife conflicts. While these could appear disparate issues, they are closely connected in dryland forest landscapes of Africa where elephants occur close to areas of human habitation. For instance, crop failure, whether due to weather or wildlife damage, is a key driver for rural farmers seeking alternative livelihoods and incomes, one of the commonest being charcoal production. Similarly, heavy reliance on wood-based energy often leads to degradation of wildlife habitat, which heightens competition with wildlife for food and water, increasing the possibility of crop-raiding. So, for multifunctional landscapes where elephants occur in close proximity with humans, any food–water–energy nexus activities toward achieving sustainability and resilience should consider human–elephant conflicts (HECs. Here, we broach these food–water–energy nexus issues with a focus on dryland areas of Africa and HECs. We highlight an ongoing study attempting to address this nexus holistically by employing a climate-smart agriculture (CSA and agro-forestry based design, augmented by an elephant deterrent study and an eco-charcoal production venture.

  11. Population structure of the African savannah elephant inferred from mitochondrial control region sequences and nuclear microsatellite loci

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nyakaana, S; Arctander, P; Siegismund, H R

    2002-01-01

    Two hundred and thirty-six mitochondrial DNA nucleotide sequences were used in combination with polymorphism at four nuclear microsatellite loci to assess the amount and distribution of genetic variation within and between African savannah elephants. They were sampled from 11 localities in easter...

  12. Natural resource use, crop damage and attitudes of rural people in the vicinity of the Maputo Elephant Reserve, Mozambique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Boer, WF; Baquete, DS

    Participation by local communities in management is widely considered a means of sustaining protected areas. In parts of the world with a history of armed conflict, the chances of such an approach being successfully adopted might seem remote. One such area is the Maputo Elephant Reserve in southern

  13. P53 at the start of the 21st century: lessons from elephants [version 1; referees: 3 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sue Haupt

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Crucial, natural protection against tumour onset in humans is orchestrated by the dynamic protein p53. The best-characterised functions of p53 relate to its cellular stress responses. In this review, we explore emerging insights into p53 activities and their functional consequences. We compare p53 in humans and elephants, in search of salient features of cancer protection.

  14. A novel application of mark-recapture to examine behaviour associated with the online trade in elephant ivory

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCrea, Rachel S.; Roberts, David L.

    2017-01-01

    The illegal trade in elephant ivory is driving the unlawful killing of elephants such that populations are now suffering unsustainable reductions. The internet is increasingly being used as a platform to conduct illegal wildlife trade, including elephant ivory. As a globally accessible medium the internet is as highly attractive to those involved in the illegal trade as it is challenging to regulate. Characterising the online illegal wildlife (ivory) trade is complex, yet key to informing enforcement activities. We applied mark-recapture to investigate behaviour associated with the online trade in elephant ivory on eBay UK as a generalist online marketplace. Our results indicate that trade takes place via eBay UK, despite its policy prohibiting this, and that two distinct trading populations exist, characterised by the pattern of their ivory sales. We suggest these may represent a large number of occasional (or non-commercial) sellers and a smaller number of dedicated (or commercial) sellers. Directing resource towards reducing the volume of occasional sales, such as through education, would enable greater focus to be placed upon characterising the extent and value of the illegal, “commercial” online ivory trade. MRC has the potential to characterise the illegal trade in ivory and diverse wildlife commodities traded using various online platforms. PMID:28289565

  15. Determinants of seasonal changes in availability of food patches for elephants (Loxodonta africana in a semi-arid African savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruce W. Clegg

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Loss of biodiversity caused by impact of elephants (Loxodonta africana on African woodlands may require a management response, but any action should be based on an understanding of why elephants choose to utilise trees destructively. Comprehension of elephant feeding behaviour requires consideration of the relative value of the plant groups they may potentially consume. Profitability of available food is partly determined by the time to locate a food patch and, therefore, as a foundation for understanding the influence of food availability on diet selection, key controls on the density of grass, forb, and browse patches were investigated across space and time in a semi-arid African savanna. Density of food patches changed seasonally because plant life-forms required different volumes of soil water to produce green forage; and woody plants and forbs responded to long-term changes in soil moisture, while grasses responded to short-term moisture pulses. Soil texture, structure of woody vegetation and fire added further complexity by altering the soil water thresholds required for production of green forage. Interpolating between regularly-timed, ground-based measurements of food density by using modelled soil water as the predictor in regression equations may be a feasible method of quantifying food available to elephants in complex savanna environments.

  16. Morphology and surface topography of the schistosome Bivitellobilharzia nairi from the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus maximus) in Sri Lanka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajapakse, R P V J; Iwagami, M; Wickramasinghe, S; Walker, S M; Agatsuma, T

    2013-09-01

    Bivitellobilharzia nairi was first recorded from an Indian elephant (Elephas maximus) in Berlin. Infections with this parasite have become increasingly important in E. maximus maximus populations in Sri Lanka. The present work is the first morphological description of this schistosome from Sri Lanka. A number of adult worms were recovered from a dead Asian elephant near the elephant orphanage, Pinnawala, in Sri Lanka. The observed clinical features of the infected elephant included emaciation, subventral oedema and anaemia. Post-mortem results indicated that the liver was enlarged and adult schistosomes were found in the blood vessels of the liver parenchyma. The total number of worms recovered from a portion of the liver was 129,870, which is an average of 22 worms per 100 g of liver. The present study uses both light microscopic and scanning electron microscope (SEM) techniques for the morphological and topographical characterization of this parasite and to permit comparison with other species of schistosomes. Morphologically, these worms correspond very well to the description of B. nairi by Dutt & Srivastava (1955). Moreover, it is clear that B. nairi is a distinctive species easily differentiated from other schistosomes. The SEM study of the tegument of male worms shows that the surface of B. nairi is smoother than in other schistosomes.

  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

  18. Human disturbance, nursing behaviour, and lactational pup growth in a declining southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonina) population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelhard, GH; Baarspul, ANJ; Broekman, M; Creuwels, JCS; Reijnders, PJH

    We studied lactation behaviour in relation to pup growth in southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) at Macquarie Island, and compared harems in areas of high and low human presence to determine if there is an effect attributable to human activities, including scientific research. Pup weaning

  19. Elephant (Loxodonta africana home ranges in Sabi Sand Reserve and Kruger National Park: a five-year satellite tracking study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bindi Thomas

    Full Text Available During a five-year GPS satellite tracking study in Sabi Sand Reserve (SSR and Kruger National Park (KNP we monitored the daily movements of an elephant cow (Loxodonta africana from September 2003 to August 2008. The study animal was confirmed to be part of a group of seven elephants therefore her position is representative of the matriarchal group. We found that the study animal did not use habitat randomly and confirmed strong seasonal fidelity to its summer and winter five-year home ranges. The cow's summer home range was in KNP in an area more than four times that of her SSR winter home range. She exhibited clear park habitation with up to three visits per year travelling via a well-defined northern or southern corridor. There was a positive correlation between the daily distance the elephant walked and minimum daily temperature and the elephant was significantly closer to rivers and artificial waterholes than would be expected if it were moving randomly in KNP and SSR. Transect lines established through the home ranges were surveyed to further understand the fine scale of the landscape and vegetation representative of the home ranges.

  20. Elephant (Loxodonta africana) home ranges in Sabi Sand Reserve and Kruger National Park: a five-year satellite tracking study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Bindi; Holland, John D; Minot, Edward O

    2008-01-01

    During a five-year GPS satellite tracking study in Sabi Sand Reserve (SSR) and Kruger National Park (KNP) we monitored the daily movements of an elephant cow (Loxodonta africana) from September 2003 to August 2008. The study animal was confirmed to be part of a group of seven elephants therefore her position is representative of the matriarchal group. We found that the study animal did not use habitat randomly and confirmed strong seasonal fidelity to its summer and winter five-year home ranges. The cow's summer home range was in KNP in an area more than four times that of her SSR winter home range. She exhibited clear park habitation with up to three visits per year travelling via a well-defined northern or southern corridor. There was a positive correlation between the daily distance the elephant walked and minimum daily temperature and the elephant was significantly closer to rivers and artificial waterholes than would be expected if it were moving randomly in KNP and SSR. Transect lines established through the home ranges were surveyed to further understand the fine scale of the landscape and vegetation representative of the home ranges.

  1. Human disturbance, nursing behaviour, and lactational pup growth in a declining southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonina) population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelhard, G.H.; Baarspul, A.N.J.; Broekman, M.; Creuwels, J.C.S.; Reijnders, P.J.H.

    2002-01-01

    We studied lactation behaviour in relation to pup growth in southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) at Macquarie Island, and compared harems in areas of high and low human presence to determine if there is an effect attributable to human activitiesincluding scientific research. Pup weaning mass,

  2. Adrenocortical responsiveness in southern elephant seal mothers and pups during lactation and the effect of scientific handling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelhard, GH; Brasseur, SMJM; Hall, AJ; Burton, HR; Reijnders, PJH

    We examined the cortisol responses to chemical and physical restraint stress in southern elephant seal Mirounga leonina females and their pups at three stages during lactation. In anaesthetised females the serum cortisol levels changed moderately during the 45-min sampling period following

  3. The effect of mature elephant bull introductions on ranging patterns of resident bulls: Phinda Private Game Reserve, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heleen Druce

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Increasing popularity of wildlife viewing has resulted in a rapid increase in small, enclosed reserves in South Africa. The African elephant is one of the many species that has been reintroduced into these reserves for eco-tourism. These elephant populations were established as young (smaller that 10 years old orphans from prior Kruger National Park culling operations. Consequently, this abnormal sex and age structure of these introduced populations has influenced their behavioural and spatial ecology. In Pilanesberg National Park, this abnormal behaviour was corrected by introducing older bulls and culling certain problem elephants. In July 2003, three older bulls (29–41 years old were introduced into Phinda Private Game Reserve, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa in order to normalise the bull age structure. These introduced bulls were monitored intensively after release, as was the resident bull population, both before and after introduction of the older bulls. The introduced bulls settled into restricted ranges separate from the family groups. All the resident bulls decreased their home ranges at first, with most increasing their home ranges a year later. The resident bulls’ change in ranging patterns was due more to ecological factors than to the influence of the mature bull introduction. This study indicates that the introduction of older male elephants into small populations does not pose major risks or animal welfare concerns.

  4. 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

    .maximus, a complete foetus preserved in ethanol, is actually an African elephant, genus Loxodonta. We further discovered that an additional E.maximus syntype, mentioned in a description by John Ray (1693) cited by Linnaeus, has been preserved as an almost complete skeleton at the Natural History Museum...

  5. Morphometrics and behavior of a wild Asian elephant exhibiting disproportionate dwarfism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Silva, Shermin; Weerathunga, U Sameera; Pushpakumara, Tennekoon V

    2014-12-19

    Dwarfism is a condition characterized by shorter stature, at times accompanied by differential skeletal growth proportions relative to the species-typical physical conformation. Causes vary and are well-documented in humans as well as certain mammalian species in captive or laboratory conditions, but rarely observed in the wild. We report on a single case of apparent dwarfism in a free-ranging adult male Asian elephant in Sri Lanka, comparing physical dimensions to those of other males in the population as well as in previous literature. The subject M459 was found to have a shoulder height of approximately 195 cm, is shorter than the average height of typical mature males, with a body length of 218 cm. This ratio of body length to height deviates from what is typically observed, which is approximately 1:1, but was similar to the attributes of a dwarf elephant in captivity documented in 1955. We report on behavior including the surprising observation that M459 appears to have a competitive advantage in intrasexual contests. We discuss how this phenotype compares to cases of dwarfism in other non-human animals. M459 exemplifies a rare occurrence of disproportionate dwarfism in a free-ranging wild mammal that has survived to reproductive maturity and appears otherwise healthy.

  6. Measuring positive and negative affect in the voiced sounds of African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soltis, Joseph; Blowers, Tracy E; Savage, Anne

    2011-02-01

    As in other mammals, there is evidence that the African elephant voice reflects affect intensity, but it is less clear if positive and negative affective states are differentially reflected in the voice. An acoustic comparison was made between African elephant "rumble" vocalizations produced in negative social contexts (dominance interactions), neutral social contexts (minimal social activity), and positive social contexts (affiliative interactions) by four adult females housed at Disney's Animal Kingdom®. Rumbles produced in the negative social context exhibited higher and more variable fundamental frequencies (F(0)) and amplitudes, longer durations, increased voice roughness, and higher first formant locations (F1), compared to the neutral social context. Rumbles produced in the positive social context exhibited similar shifts in most variables (F(0 )variation, amplitude, amplitude variation, duration, and F1), but the magnitude of response was generally less than that observed in the negative context. Voice roughness and F(0) observed in the positive social context remained similar to that observed in the neutral context. These results are most consistent with the vocal expression of affect intensity, in which the negative social context elicited higher intensity levels than the positive context, but differential vocal expression of positive and negative affect cannot be ruled out.

  7. Stable isotope series from elephant ivory reveal lifetime histories of a true dietary generalist.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Codron, Jacqueline; Codron, Daryl; Sponheimer, Matt; Kirkman, Kevin; Duffy, Kevin J; Raubenheimer, Erich J; Mélice, Jean-Luc; Grant, Rina; Clauss, Marcus; Lee-Thorp, Julia A

    2012-06-22

    Longitudinal studies have revealed how variation in resource use within consumer populations can impact their dynamics and functional significance in communities. Here, we investigate multi-decadal diet variations within individuals of a keystone megaherbivore species, the African elephant (Loxodonta africana), using serial stable isotope analysis of tusks from the Kruger National Park, South Africa. These records, representing the longest continuous diet histories documented for any extant species, reveal extensive seasonal and annual variations in isotopic--and hence dietary--niches of individuals, but little variation between them. Lack of niche distinction across individuals contrasts several recent studies, which found relatively high levels of individual niche specialization in various taxa. Our result is consistent with theory that individual mammal herbivores are nutritionally constrained to maintain broad diet niches. Individual diet specialization would also be a costly strategy for large-bodied taxa foraging over wide areas in spatio-temporally heterogeneous environments. High levels of within-individual diet variability occurred within and across seasons, and persisted despite an overall increase in inferred C(4) grass consumption through the twentieth century. We suggest that switching between C(3) browsing and C(4) grazing over extended time scales facilitates elephant survival through environmental change, and could even allow recovery of overused resources.

  8. Fatty acid profile in vertical strata of elephant grass subjected to intermittent stocking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    KAMILA M. DIAS

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The milk and meat from animals with a pasture-based diet have higher proportions of CLA and C18:3 and lower omega-6:omega-3 ratios than products from animals with diets based on corn silage and concentrate. However, most of the published studies have evaluated fatty acid profiles in temperate climate grasses and the literature with tropical grasses is scarce. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the morphological and fatty acid compositions in the vertical strata of elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schum. swards subjected to grazing heights (90 or 120 cm pre-grazing heights and levels of defoliation (50% or 70% removal of the initial pre-grazing height. There were no interactions among pre-grazing height, the level of defoliation and grazing stratum. However, higher proportion of C18:3 (58% and 63% was found in the 90-cm swards and in the half upper stratum. A higher proportion of C18:3 was associated with a higher leaf proportion and crude protein content. Thus, the upper stratum of sward or a grazing management scheme (e.g. first-last stocking resulting in a higher proportion of leaves and crude protein both provide higher proportions of C18:3 to animals grazing in elephant grass swards.

  9. Southern Ocean frontal structure and sea-ice formation rates revealed by elephant seals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charrassin, J.-B.; Hindell, M.; Rintoul, S. R.; Roquet, F.; Sokolov, S.; Biuw, M.; Costa, D.; Boehme, L.; Lovell, P.; Coleman, R.; Timmermann, R.; Meijers, A.; Meredith, M.; Park, Y.-H.; Bailleul, F.; Goebel, M.; Tremblay, Y.; Bost, C.-A.; McMahon, C. R.; Field, I. C.; Fedak, M. A.; Guinet, C.

    2008-01-01

    Polar regions are particularly sensitive to climate change, with the potential for significant feedbacks between ocean circulation, sea ice, and the ocean carbon cycle. However, the difficulty in obtaining in situ data means that our ability to detect and interpret change is very limited, especially in the Southern Ocean, where the ocean beneath the sea ice remains almost entirely unobserved and the rate of sea-ice formation is poorly known. Here, we show that southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) equipped with oceanographic sensors can measure ocean structure and water mass changes in regions and seasons rarely observed with traditional oceanographic platforms. In particular, seals provided a 30-fold increase in hydrographic profiles from the sea-ice zone, allowing the major fronts to be mapped south of 60°S and sea-ice formation rates to be inferred from changes in upper ocean salinity. Sea-ice production rates peaked in early winter (April–May) during the rapid northward expansion of the pack ice and declined by a factor of 2 to 3 between May and August, in agreement with a three-dimensional coupled ocean–sea-ice model. By measuring the high-latitude ocean during winter, elephant seals fill a “blind spot” in our sampling coverage, enabling the establishment of a truly global ocean-observing system. PMID:18695241

  10. Southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina Linn. depredate toothfish longlines in the midnight zone.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John van den Hoff

    Full Text Available Humans have devised fishing technologies that compete with marine predators for fish resources world-wide. One such fishery for the Patagonian toothfish (Dissostichus eleginoides has developed interactions with a range of predators, some of which are marine mammals capable of diving to extreme depths for extended periods. A deep-sea camera system deployed within a toothfish fishery operating in the Southern Ocean acquired the first-ever video footage of an extreme-diver, the southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonina, depredating catch from longlines set at depths in excess of 1000m. The interactions recorded were non-lethal, however independent fisheries observer reports confirm elephant seal-longline interactions can be lethal. The seals behaviour of depredating catch at depth during the line soak-period differs to other surface-breathing species and thus presents a unique challenge to mitigate their by-catch. Deployments of deep-sea cameras on exploratory fishing gear prior to licencing and permit approvals would gather valuable information regarding the nature of interactions between deep diving/dwelling marine species and longline fisheries operating at bathypelagic depths. Furthermore, the positive identification by sex and age class of species interacting with commercial fisheries would assist in formulating management plans and mitigation strategies founded on species-specific life-history strategies.

  11. Quality comparison of elephant apple juices after high-pressure processing and thermal treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nayak, Prakash Kumar; Rayaguru, Kalpana; Radha Krishnan, Kesavan

    2017-03-01

    In the present work, the effect of high pressure processing (HPP) on the quality parameters (pH, °Brix, total acidity, viscosity, colour, antioxidant activity, total phenols, total flavonoids, microbial flora, and sensory analysis) of elephant apple (Dillenia indica) juice was investigated. The juice samples were analysed periodically (0, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 and 60 days) during 60 days of storage period and results were compared with thermally processed as well as with untreated (fresh juice) samples. Slight variations had been observed in the quality parameters like pH, °Brix and total acidity. Other parameters like colour values, antioxidant activity, total phenols and total flavonoids were varied significantly (P apple juice was established as 60 days at 4 °C. This study showed that application of HPP effectively maintained quality attributes and extended shelf life of the elephant apple juice. It may be suggested that application of HPP could be considered for commercial application during storage and marketing. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.

  12. Forage production in mixed grazing systems of elephant grass with arrowleaf clover or forage peanut

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    Daiane Cristine Seibt

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Most dairy production systems are pasture-based, usually consisting of sole grass species. This system facilitates pasture management, but results in high production costs, mainly because of nitrogen fertilizers. An alternative to making forage systems more sustainable is to introduce legumes into the pasture. Mixed pastures allow better forage distribution over time and reduce fertilization costs. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate, throughout the year, three forage systems (FS: FS1 (control - elephant grass (EG, ryegrass (RG, and spontaneous species (SS; FS2 - EG + RG + SS + arrowleaf clover; and FS3 - EG + RG + SS + forage peanut. Elephant grass was planted in rows spaced 4 m apart. Ryegrass was sown between the EG lines, in the winter. Arrowleaf clover was sown according to the respective treatments and forage peanut was preserved. Evaluation was carried out using Holstein cows. The experiment was arranged in a completely randomized design, with three treatments (FS, and three repetitions (paddocks with repeated measurements (grazing cycles. Forage mass achieved 3.46, 3.80, and 3.91 t ha-1 for the treatments FS1, FS2 and FS3, respectively. The forage systems intercropped with legumes produced the best results.

  13. Acute death associated with Citrobacter freundii infection in an African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortega, Joaquín; Corpa, Juan M; Orden, José A; Blanco, Jorge; Carbonell, María D; Gerique, Amalia C; Latimer, Erin; Hayward, Gary S; Roemmelt, Andreas; Kraemer, Thomas; Romey, Aurore; Kassimi, Labib B; Casares, Miguel

    2015-09-01

    A 21-year-old male African elephant (Loxodonta africana) died suddenly with no previous medical history. Grossly, there were severe multifocal epicardial and endocardial hemorrhages of the atria and ventricles, hydropericardium, multifocal pleural hemorrhages, and severe pulmonary congestion and edema. Histologically, there was fibrinoid vasculitis and thrombosis in the heart and lung and myocardial necrosis. Citrobacter freundii was isolated in abundance in pure culture from liver and heart samples. Low levels of multiples types of elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus (EEHV-6, EEHV-2B, and EEHV-3A) were detected in spleen samples, but not in heart samples. The levels of EEHV DNA found were much lower than those usually associated with acute EEHV hemorrhagic disease, and many other genomic loci that would normally be found in such cases were evidently below the level of detection. Therefore, these findings are unlikely to indicate lethal EEHV disease. Polymerase chain reaction for encephalomyocarditis virus (EMCV) and toxicology for oleander (Nerium oleander) were negative. Stress, resulting from recent transport, and antimicrobial therapy may have contributed to the death of this animal. © 2015 The Author(s).

  14. Genitourinary and pulmonary multidrug resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumonceaux, Genevieve A; St Leger, Judy; Olsen, John H; Burton, Michael S; Ashkin, David; Maslow, Joel N

    2011-12-01

    A female Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) developed vaginal and trunk discharge. Cultures were positive for pan-susceptible Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Isoniazid and pyrazinamide were given rectally and monitored by serum levels. After being trained at 10 mo to accept oral dosing, treatment was changed and rifampin was added. Oral medications were administered for another 10 mo. A year after completion of therapy, the vaginal discharge increased and cultures yielded M. tuberculosis, resistant to isoniazid and rifampin. Treatment with oral ethambutol, pyrazinamide, and enrofloxacin and intramuscular amikacin was initiated. Although followup cultures became negative, adverse reactions to medications precluded treatment completion. Due to public health concerns related to multidrug resistant M. tuberculosis (MDR-TB), the elephant was euthanized. Postmortem smears from the lung, peribronchial, and abdominal lymph nodes yielded acid-fast bacteria, although cultures were negative. This case highlights important considerations in the treatment of M. tuberculosis in animals and the need for a consistent approach to diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up.

  15. Etorphine-halothane anaesthesia in two five-year-old African elephants (Loxodonta africana : clinical communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G.F. Stegmann

    1999-07-01

    Full Text Available Anaesthesia of 2 five-year-old femaleAfrican elephants (Loxodonta africana was required for dental surgery. The animals were each premedicated with 120 mg of azaperone 60 min before transportation to the hospital. Before offloading, 1 mg etorphine was administered intramuscularly (i.m. to each elephant to facilitate walking them to the equine induction / recovery room. For induction, 2 mg etorphine was administered i.m. to each animal. Induction was complete within 6 min. Surgical anaesthesia was induced with halothane-in-oxygen after intubation of the trunk. During surgery the mean heart rate was 61 and 45 beats / min respectively. Systolic blood pressures increased to 27.5 and 25.6 kPa respectively, and were treated with intravenous azaperone. Blood pressure decreased thereafter to a mean systolic pressure of 18.1 and 19.8 kPa, respectively. Rectal temperature was 35.6 and 33.9 oC at the onset of surgery, and decreased to 35.3 and 33.5 oC, respectively, at the end of anaesthesia. Etorphine anaesthesia was reversed with 5mg diprenorphine at the completion of 90 min of surgery.

  16. Characterization of forage and extrusa clones dwarf elephant grass under rotational stocking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana Pires Pereira

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this trial was to evaluate the behavior ingestive of crossbred heifers and chemical characteristics of the material from two clones of dwarf elephant grass (BRS Kurumi ‘and CNPGL 01/03/00 submitted to different management strategies through sampling of forage (whole plant extrusa and manual hand plucking. The experiment was conducted at Embrapa Dairy Cattle, Coronel Pacheco, MG. We used a completely randomized design with factorial (2x2x2 with three replications. The treatments consisted of two clones of elephant grass (BRS Kurumi ‘and CNPGL 01/03/00, two light interception at the entrance of the animals (90 and 95% and two heights of post-grazing residue (30 and 50 cm with three replications. The chemical analysis showed that the methodology manual grazing simulation enables an acceptable estimate of the forage selected by grazing animals and the sampling of the whole plant is not selected by the animal diet. To harvest extrusa rate evaluation and mass bit, fractions and chemical composition of the plant of the ingested material was taken. Characteristics, structural and nutritional value of clone BRS ‘Kurumi’ facilitated greater forage intake by the animal, suggesting its use in grazing systems.

  17. Dietary management, husbandry, and body weights of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) during successful pregnancies at Disney's Animal Kingdom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Kathleen; Kerr, Katherine; Wanty, Rachel; Amaral, Bryan; Olea-Popelka, Francisco; Valdes, Eduardo

    2016-11-01

    Successful pregnancy in African elephants is influenced by biological and environmental factors. For managed elephants many of these factors are set directly or indirectly by their human care takers, including nutrition and husbandry. While African elephants often struggle to conceive and produce healthy offspring under human care, Disney's Animal Kingdom (DAK) has effectively managed six gestations to fruition in three cows. Despite differences between mothers in terms of BW and growth curves during gravidity, each pregnancy successfully resulted in the birth of a healthy calf. Body weight (BW) gain during pregnancy ranged from 245 to 558 kg. Obesity in elephants is associated with increased occurrence of dystocia and mortality of the fetus and mother, hence understanding normal weight gains is an integral concept. Diet (dry matter basis) included high levels of fiber throughout pregnancies (60-70% neutral detergent fiber), vitamin E supplementation (116-214 mg/kg diet of alpha-tocopherol), as well as low levels of starch (2.5-5.1%) and crude fat (1.9-2.4%). Caretaker directed exercise during pregnancy at DAK served to prevent ventral edema, and increase muscle tone to prepare cows for parturition. Demonstrating techniques for effective care of pregnant females, as well as normal growth curves and fluctuations under ex situ conditions are necessary for future positive outcomes. Ensuring reproductive success through proper husbandry and nutrition are a key to long-term conservation of elephants. Zoo Biol. 35:574-578, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Linking mesopelagic prey abundance and distribution to the foraging behavior of a deep-diving predator, the northern elephant seal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saijo, Daisuke; Mitani, Yoko; Abe, Takuzo; Sasaki, Hiroko; Goetsch, Chandra; Costa, Daniel P.; Miyashita, Kazushi

    2017-06-01

    The Transition Zone in the eastern North Pacific is important foraging habitat for many marine predators. Further, the mesopelagic depths (200-1000 m) host an abundant prey resource known as the deep scattering layer that supports deep diving predators, such as northern elephant seals, beaked whales, and sperm whales. Female northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) undertake biannual foraging migrations to this region where they feed on mesopelagic fish and squid; however, in situ measurements of prey distribution and abundance, as well as the subsurface oceanographic features in the mesopelagic Transition Zone are limited. While concurrently tracking female elephant seals during their post-molt migration, we conducted a ship-based oceanographic and hydroacoustic survey and used mesopelagic mid-water trawls to sample the deep scattering layer. We found that the abundance of mesopelagic fish at 400-600 m depth zone was the highest in the 43 °N zone, the primary foraging area of female seals. We identified twenty-nine families of fishes from the mid-water trawls, with energy-rich myctophid fishes dominating by species number, individual number, and wet weight. Biomass of mesopelagic fishes is positively correlated to annual net primary productivity; however, at the temporal and spatial scale of our study, we found no relationship between satellite derived surface primary production and prey density. Instead, we found that the subsurface chlorophyll maximum correlated with the primary elephant seal foraging regions, indicating a stronger linkage between mesopelagic ecosystem dynamics and subsurface features rather than the surface features measured with satellites. Our study not only provides insights on prey distribution in a little-studied deep ocean ecosystem, but shows that northern elephant seals are targeting the dense, species-diverse mesopelagic ecosystem at the gyre-gyre boundary that was previously inferred from their diving behavior.

  19. The influence of life history milestones and association networks on crop-raiding behavior in male African elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick I Chiyo

    Full Text Available Factors that influence learning and the spread of behavior in wild animal populations are important for understanding species responses to changing environments and for species conservation. In populations of wildlife species that come into conflict with humans by raiding cultivated crops, simple models of exposure of individual animals to crops do not entirely explain the prevalence of crop raiding behavior. We investigated the influence of life history milestones using age and association patterns on the probability of being a crop raider among wild free ranging male African elephants; we focused on males because female elephants are not known to raid crops in our study population. We examined several features of an elephant association network; network density, community structure and association based on age similarity since they are known to influence the spread of behaviors in a population. We found that older males were more likely to be raiders than younger males, that males were more likely to be raiders when their closest associates were also raiders, and that males were more likely to be raiders when their second closest associates were raiders older than them. The male association network had sparse associations, a tendency for individuals similar in age and raiding status to associate, and a strong community structure. However, raiders were randomly distributed between communities. These features of the elephant association network may limit the spread of raiding behavior and likely determine the prevalence of raiding behavior in elephant populations. Our results suggest that social learning has a major influence on the acquisition of raiding behavior in younger males whereas life history factors are important drivers of raiding behavior in older males. Further, both life-history and network patterns may influence the acquisition and spread of complex behaviors in animal populations and provide insight on managing human

  20. Enriching the captive elephant population genetic pool through artificial insemination with frozen-thawed semen collected in the wild.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hildebrandt, T B; Hermes, R; Saragusty, J; Potier, R; Schwammer, H M; Balfanz, F; Vielgrader, H; Baker, B; Bartels, P; Göritz, F

    2012-10-01

    The first successful AI in an elephant was reported in 1998, using fresh semen. Since then almost 40 calves have been produced through AI in both Asian and African elephants worldwide. Following these successes, with the objective of enriching the captive population with genetic material from the wild, we evaluated the possibility of using frozen-thawed semen collected from wild bulls for AI in captivity. Semen, collected from a 36-yr-old wild African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) in South Africa was frozen using the directional freezing technique. This frozen-thawed semen was used for four inseminations over two consecutive days, two before and two after ovulation, in a 26-yr-old female African savanna elephant in Austria. Insemination dose of 1200 × 10(6) cells per AI with 61% motility resulted in pregnancy, which was confirmed through ultrasound examination 75, 110 and 141 days after the AI procedure. This represents the first successful AI using wild bull frozen-thawed semen in elephants. The incorporation of AI with frozen-thawed semen into the assisted reproduction toolbox opens the way to preserve and transport semen between distant individuals in captivity or, as was done in this study, between wild and captive populations, without the need to transport stressed or potentially disease-carrying animals or to remove animals from the wild. In addition, cryopreserved spermatozoa, in combination with AI, are useful methods to extend the reproductive lifespan of individuals beyond their biological lifespan and an important tool for genetic diversity management and phenotype selection in these endangered mammals. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Exploring the value of overseas biodiversity to Chinese netizens based on willingness to pay for the African elephants' protection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhengzao; Gong, Yazhen; Mao, Xianqiang

    2018-10-01

    For a long time, Chinese people have been considered to be concerned only with commercial interests but not ecological systems and biodiversity conservation, even though their trade and investment footprints are globalizing rapidly. This study intended to reveal the non-market valuation on the non-use value of African elephant to Chinese people. Taking the ban of ivory trade as the background, in this study, Chinese netizens' willingness to pay for African elephant conservation was investigated using the contingent valuation method. Four versions of questionnaires were designed and distinguished by offering different background information and payment vehicles (tax and donation). It was demonstrated that the differences in both given information and payment vehicles had no significant impacts on the estimated mean willingness to pay value. 53.36% of the respondents gave positive responses for the hypothetical projects of African elephant protection. The mean willingness to pay was 83.62 RMB (12.59 USD) and 158.58 RMB (23.88 USD) per year per household and the aggregated willingness to pay or benefits for the protection of African elephants from Chinese netizens were estimated to be 16.31 billion RMB (2.45 billion USD) and 30.92 billion RMB (4.65 billion USD) per year after grouping regression and benefit transfer adjustments, respectively. The current research shows that Chinese people, living thousands kilometers away from Africa, have a high public awareness for and valuation to the endangered elephants. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Blood oxygen depletion is independent of dive function in a deep diving vertebrate, the northern elephant seal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica U Meir

    Full Text Available Although energetics is fundamental to animal ecology, traditional methods of determining metabolic rate are neither direct nor instantaneous. Recently, continuous blood oxygen (O2 measurements were used to assess energy expenditure in diving elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris, demonstrating that an exceptional hypoxemic tolerance and exquisite management of blood O2 stores underlie the extraordinary diving capability of this consummate diver. As the detailed relationship of energy expenditure and dive behavior remains unknown, we integrated behavior, ecology, and physiology to characterize the costs of different types of dives of elephant seals. Elephant seal dive profiles were analyzed and O2 utilization was classified according to dive type (overall function of dive: transit, foraging, food processing/rest. This is the first account linking behavior at this level with in vivo blood O2 measurements in an animal freely diving at sea, allowing us to assess patterns of O2 utilization and energy expenditure between various behaviors and activities in an animal in the wild. In routine dives of elephant seals, the blood O2 store was significantly depleted to a similar range irrespective of dive function, suggesting that all dive types have equal costs in terms of blood O2 depletion. Here, we present the first physiological evidence that all dive types have similarly high blood O2 demands, supporting an energy balance strategy achieved by devoting one major task to a given dive, thereby separating dive functions into distinct dive types. This strategy may optimize O2 store utilization and recovery, consequently maximizing time underwater and allowing these animals to take full advantage of their underwater resources. This approach may be important to optimizing energy expenditure throughout a dive bout or at-sea foraging trip and is well suited to the lifestyle of an elephant seal, which spends > 90% of its time at sea submerged making diving its

  3. 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.

  4. Comparative studies of bioactive organosulphur compounds and antioxidant activities in garlic (Allium sativum L.), elephant garlic (Allium ampeloprasum L.) and onion (Allium cepa L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sunyoung; Kim, Dan-Bi; Jin, Wenjie; Park, Junghyuck; Yoon, Wonjin; Lee, Yunyeol; Kim, Soyoung; Lee, Sanghee; Kim, Sungsoo; Lee, Ok-Hwan; Shin, Dongbin; Yoo, Miyoung

    2018-05-01

    We evaluated organosulphur compounds in Allium vegetables, including garlic, elephant garlic and onion, using high-performance liquid chromatography. Among organosulphur compounds, elephant garlic had considerable γ-glutamyl peptides, and garlic had the highest alliin content. Onion had low level of organosulphur compounds than did elephant garlic and garlic. In addition, antioxidant capacities were evaluated by oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) values and 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and 2,2'-azinobis(3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulphonic acid) (ABTS) radical scavenging assay. The results showed that garlic had the highest antioxidant capacity, followed by elephant garlic and onion. Furthermore, a positive correlation was observed between antioxidant activities and organosulphur compounds (R > 0.77). Therefore, our results indicate that there was a close relationship between antioxidant capacity and organosulphur compounds in Allium vegetables.

  5. First report of changes in leukocyte morphology in response to inflammatory conditions in Asian and African elephants (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africana.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole I Stacy

    Full Text Available Although the hematology of healthy elephants has been well-described, published information on hematological changes during disease is limited. The objective of this study was to describe qualitative morphological changes in the leukocytes of Asian and African elephants (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africana diagnosed with a variety of inflammatory conditions. Twenty-five of 27 elephants had morphological changes in their leukocytes, although only 16 of these had a concurrent inflammatory leukogram. Morphological changes included heterophil left-shifting with or without concurrent dysgranulopoiesis, toxicity, or hypersegmentation, reactive lymphocytes, plasma cells, and/or vacuolated monocytes. Although the observed leukocyte morphological changes are non-specific, their early recognition upon blood film evaluation may provide important, clinically-relevant information, particularly if the leukogram is normal. This case series is the first description of qualitative morphological changes in the leukocytes of elephants in association with inflammation.

  6. Northern elephant seal temperature cast data collected as part of the Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) program from February 22 2004 to January 25, 2011 (NODC Accession 0077805)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset is a large collection of temperature casts recorded by fast-response archival time-depth recorder tags on northern elephant seals during their natural...

  7. Temperature and salinity measurements taken by instrumented elephant seals (SEaOS) from 2004-02-24 to 2007-01-17 (NODC Accession 0012881)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Temperature and salinity measurements taken from elephant seals in the Antarctic, Coastal South Indian Ocean and other locations from 2004 to 2006 (NODC Accession...

  8. Surgical treatment of an umbilical hernia in a free-ranging sub-adult African elephant in Samburu National Reserve, Kenya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mijele D

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Domnic Mijele, Michael Njoroge, Titus Kaitho Veterinary Services Department, Species Conservation and Management Division, Kenya Wildlife Service, Nairobi, Kenya Abstract: A 10-year-old male African elephant (Loxodonta africana at Samburu National Reserve in Northern Kenya, weighing approximately 1,600 kg, presented with an umbilical hernia in October 2013. Umbilical herniorrhaphy was carried out under field conditions. Anesthesia was induced and maintained using etorphine hydrochloride for 3 hours during the surgery. This case report details both the surgical and anesthetic procedure carried out to correct the hernia, and the eventual successful recovery of the elephant from anesthesia. However, the elephant died weeks after the surgery and a postmortem could not reveal the cause of death because predators had scavenged the carcass. The challenges of the surgical procedure and outcome including possible causes of death are highlighted in this report. Keywords: African elephant, general anesthesia, etorphine hydrochloride, local anesthesia Lignocaine + adrenaline, umbilical herniorrhaphy

  9. The impact of male contraception on dominance hierarchy and herd association patterns of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in a fenced game reserve

    OpenAIRE

    L.S. Doughty; K. Slater; H. Zitzer; Tomos Avent; S. Thompson

    2014-01-01

    Overpopulation of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) in fenced reserves in South Africa is becoming increasingly problematic to wildlife managers. With growing opposition to culling and the high cost of translocation, alternative management strategies focusing on male elephants are being investigated. In this study, hormonal treatment via Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone (GnRH) suppression, and surgical treatment via vasectomy were trialled. Focusing on behavioural responses, we tested the ...

  10. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    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.

  13. Using camera traps and digital video to investigate the impact of Aethina tumida pest on honey bee (Apis mellifera adansonii) reproduction and ability to keep away elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis) in Gamba, Gabon

    OpenAIRE

    Steeve Ngama; Lisa Korte; Mireille Johnson; Jérôme Bindelle; Auguste Ndoutoume Ndong; Cédric Vermeulen

    2018-01-01

    Bees and elephant interactions are the core of a conservation curiosity since it has been demonstrated that bees, one of the smallest domesticated animals, can keep away elephants, the largest terrestrial animals. Yet, insects' parasites can impact the fitness and activity of the bees. Since their activity is critical to the repellent ability against elephants, this study assessed the impact of small hive beetles (Aethina tumida) on bee (Apis mellifera adansonii) reproduction and ability to k...

  14. Patch-occupancy models indicate human activity as major determinant of forest elephant Loxodonta cyclotis seasonal distribution in an industrial corridor in Gabon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buij, R.; McShea, W.J.; Campbell, P.; Lee, M.E.; Dallmeier, F.; Guimondou, S.; Mackaga, L.; Guisseougou, N.; Mboumba, S.; Hines, J.E.; Nichols, J.D.; Alonso, A.

    2007-01-01

    The importance of human activity and ecological features in influencing African forest elephant ranging behaviour was investigated in the Rabi-Ndogo corridor of the Gamba Complex of Protected Areas in southwest Gabon. Locations in a wide geographical area with a range of environmental variables were selected for patch-occupancy surveys using elephant dung to assess seasonal presence and absence of elephants. Patch-occupancy procedures allowed for covariate modelling evaluating hypotheses for both occupancy in relation to human activity and ecological features, and detection probability in relation to vegetation density. The best fitting models for old and fresh dung data sets indicate that (1) detection probability for elephant dung is negatively related to the relative density of the vegetation, and (2) human activity, such as presence and infrastructure, are more closely associated with elephant distribution patterns than are ecological features, such as the presence of wetlands and preferred fresh fruit. Our findings emphasize the sensitivity of elephants to human disturbance, in this case infrastructure development associated with gas and oil production. Patch-occupancy methodology offers a viable alternative to current transect protocols for monitoring programs with multiple covariates.

  15. Summing the strokes: energy economy in northern elephant seals during large-scale foraging migrations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maresh, J L; Adachi, T; Takahashi, A; Naito, Y; Crocker, D E; Horning, M; Williams, T M; Costa, D P

    2015-01-01

    The energy requirements of free-ranging marine mammals are challenging to measure due to cryptic and far-ranging feeding habits, but are important to quantify given the potential impacts of high-level predators on ecosystems. Given their large body size and carnivorous lifestyle, we would predict that northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) have elevated field metabolic rates (FMRs) that require high prey intake rates, especially during pregnancy. Disturbance associated with climate change or human activity is predicted to further elevate energy requirements due to an increase in locomotor costs required to accommodate a reduction in prey or time available to forage. In this study, we determined the FMRs, total energy requirements, and energy budgets of adult, female northern elephant seals. We also examined the impact of increased locomotor costs on foraging success in this species. Body size, time spent at sea and reproductive status strongly influenced FMR. During the short foraging migration, FMR averaged 90.1 (SE = 1.7) kJ kg(-1)d(-1) - only 36 % greater than predicted basal metabolic rate. During the long migration, when seals were pregnant, FMRs averaged 69.4 (±3.0) kJ kg(-1)d(-1) - values approaching those predicted to be necessary to support basal metabolism in mammals of this size. Low FMRs in pregnant seals were driven by hypometabolism coupled with a positive feedback loop between improving body condition and reduced flipper stroking frequency. In contrast, three additional seals carrying large, non-streamlined instrumentation saw a four-fold increase in energy partitioned toward locomotion, resulting in elevated FMRs and only half the mass gain of normally-swimming study animals. These results highlight the importance of keeping locomotion costs low for successful foraging in this species. In preparation for lactation and two fasting periods with high demands on energy reserves, migrating elephant seals utilize an economical foraging

  16. Moving Ahead with the Schizophrenia Concept: From the Elephant to the Mouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keshavan, Matcheri S; Nasrallah, Henry A; Tandon, Rajiv

    2012-01-01

    The current construct of schizophrenia as a unitary disease is far from satisfactory, and is in need of reconceptualization. The first five papers in our “facts” series reviewed what is known about schizophrenia to date, and a limited number of key facts appear to stand out. Schizophrenia is characterized by persistent cognitive deficits, positive and negative symptoms typically beginning in youth, substantive heritability, and brain structural, functional and neurochemical alterations including dopaminergic dysregulation. Several pathophysiological models have been proposed with differing interpretations of the illness, like the fabled six blind Indian men groping different parts of an elephant coming up with different conclusions. However, accumulating knowledge is integrating the several extant models of schizophrenia etiopathogenesis into unifying constructs; we discuss an example, involving a neurodevelopmental imbalance in excitatory/inhibitory neural systems leading to impaired neural plasticity. This imbalance, which may be proximal to clinical manifestations, could result from a variety of genetic, epigenetic and environmental causes, as well as pathophysiological processes such as inflammation and oxidative stress. Such efforts to “connect the dots” (and visualizing the elephant) are still limited by the substantial clinical, pathological, and etiological heterogeneity of schizophrenia and its blurred boundaries with several other psychiatric disorders leading to a “fuzzy cluster” of overlapping syndromes, thereby reducing the content, discriminant and predictive validity of a unitary construct of this illness. The way ahead involves several key directions: a) choosing valid phenotype definitions increasingly derived from translational neuroscience; b) addressing clinical heterogeneity by a cross-diagnostic dimensional and a staging approach to psychopathology; c) addressing pathophysiological heterogeneity by elucidating independent families

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molenaar, Fieke M; La Rocca, S Anna; Khatri, Meenakshi; Lopez, Javier; Steinbach, Falko; Dastjerdi, Akbar

    2015-01-01

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  19. Characterization of ashes of elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum) for potential added in mass red ceramic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Silva, A.M.F.D.; Sales, K.A.; Monteiro, S.N.; Vieira, C.M.F.

    2012-01-01

    This work is in characterizing ash from biomass grass (Pennisetum purpureums) for incorporation into red ceramic masses. The ashes of elephant grass were generated from burning this dry biomass in an industrial furnace of red ceramic. The morphology of the material generated was observed by an optical microscope. The chemical composition was determined by fluorescence X-ray spectrometry, and the identification of phases by X-ray diffraction. The particle size distribution was obtained by sieving. Thermogravimetric analyzes were also conducted. The results indicate that these ashes are constituted of high quantities of SiO 2 , MgO, CaO and K 2 O, totaling approximately 75% of composition of matter. They have a particle size of 0.7 to 2.2mm featuring. The residue as a kind of coarse particles. Therefore, the results of this study can support future research to the addition of this residue in structural ceramics products (red ceramic)

  20. Sexual differentiation in three unconventional mammals: spotted hyenas, elephants and tammar wallabies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glickman, Stephen E; Short, Roger V; Renfree, Marilyn B

    2005-11-01

    The present review explores sexual differentiation in three non-conventional species: the spotted hyena, the elephant and the tammar wallaby, selected because of the natural challenges they present for contemporary understanding of sexual differentiation. According to the prevailing view of mammalian sexual differentiation, originally proposed by Alfred Jost, secretion of androgen and anti-Mullerian hormone (AMH) by the fetal testes during critical stages of development accounts for the full range of sexually dimorphic urogenital traits observed at birth. Jost's concept was subsequently expanded to encompass sexual differentiation of the brain and behavior. Although the central focus of this review involves urogenital development, we assume that the novel mechanisms described in this article have potentially significant implications for sexual differentiation of brain and behavior, a transposition with precedent in the history of this field. Contrary to the "specific" requirements of Jost's formulation, female spotted hyenas and elephants initially develop male-type external genitalia prior to gonadal differentiation. In addition, the administration of anti-androgens to pregnant female spotted hyenas does not prevent the formation of a scrotum, pseudoscrotum, penis or penile clitoris in the offspring of treated females, although it is not yet clear whether the creation of masculine genitalia involves other steroids or whether there is a genetic mechanism bypassing a hormonal mediator. Wallabies, where sexual differentiation occurs in the pouch after birth, provide the most conclusive evidence for direct genetic control of sexual dimorphism, with the scrotum developing only in males and the pouch and mammary glands only in females, before differentiation of the gonads. The development of the pouch and mammary gland in females and the scrotum in males is controlled by genes on the X chromosome. In keeping with the "expanded" version of Jost's formulation, secretion

  1. ESR dating of elephant teeth and radiation dose rate estimation in soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Taisoo Chong; Ohta, Hiroyuki; Nakashima, Yoshiyuki; Iida, Takao; Saisho, Hideo

    1989-01-01

    Chemical analysis of 238 U, 232 Th and 40 K in the dentine as well as enamel of elephant tooth fossil has been carried out in order to estimate the internal absorbed dose rate of the specimens, which was estimated to be (39±4) mrad/y on the assumption of early uptake model of radionuclides. The external radiation dose rate in the soil including the contribution from cosmic rays was also estimated to be (175±18) mrad/y with the help of γ-ray spectroscopic techniques of the soil samples in which the specimens were buried. The 60 Co γ-ray equivalent accumulated dose of (2±0.2) x 10 4 rad for the tooth enamel gave ''ESR age'' of (9±2) x 10 4 y, which falls in the geologically estimated range between 3 x 10 4 and 30 x 10 4 y before the present. (author)

  2. Distribution of 14C, 90Sr and 228Th in an elephant tusk

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brunnermeier, M.J.; Schmied, S.A.K. Contact Information and Robert Schupfner

    2012-01-01

    The period of date of death of an elephant can be assessed by analyzing four different radionuclides, 14 C, 90 Sr, 228 Th and 232 Th in its ivory. These nuclides are supposed to have variing concentrations at different parts of a tusk. The reason is the procedure of growth which takes place at the butt-site of a tusk. Therefore the site of sampling could have a big influence on the assessed date of death. However, to find out if the position of sampling is important a complete tusk was analyzed regarding the distribution of these nuclides. Results show that the concentration activity of 14 C and 228 Th varies in different parts of a tusk. The activity concentration of 90 Sr is very similar in all analyzed parts. The conclusion is that sampling at the butt of a tusk is recommended for age assessment. (author)

  3. 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

    Poulakakis and colleagues (Poulakakis et al. 2006: Biol. Lett. 2, 451-454), report the recovery of 'authentic' mammoth DNA from an 800,000-year-old fragment of bone excavated on the island of Crete. In light of results from other ancient DNA studies that indicate how DNA survival is unlikely...... 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...... polymorphisms. Finally, we demonstrate using a simple BLAST search in GenBank that the claimed 'uniquely derived character state' for mammoths is in fact also found within modern elephants. Udgivelsesdato: 2007-Feb-22...

  4. Histological and immunohistochemical characterization of uterine adenocarcinoma in an Asian elephant (Elephas Maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laricchiuta, Pietro; Russo, Valeria; Costagliola, Alessandro; Piegari, Giuseppe; Capasso, Michele; Silvestre, Pasquale; Martano, Manuela; Paciello, Orlando

    2018-03-23

    A 56 year old nulliparous female Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) living at the zoological garden of Naples (Italy), with a clinical history of recurrent colic, was found in agonal state and humane euthanasia was elected. At necropsy the uterine body was moderately increased in size and the lumen was reduced due to a poorly demarcated and infiltrative neoplasm. Furthermore, multiple, whitish, firm nodules were present in both lungs. Histological examination of the uterine mass revealed epithelial cells arranged in tubular or solid pattern infiltrating the endometrium and the muscular layer. Immunohistochemical examination showed immunoreactivity of neoplastic cells to estrogen receptors antibody. Pulmonary lesions were histologically and immunohistochemically superimposable to the epithelial uterine neoplasm. A definitive diagnosis of uterine adenocarcinoma with pulmonary metastases was made.

  5. The Boron Isotopic Composition of Elephant Dung: Inputs to the Global Boron Budget

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, L. B.; Hervig, R. L.

    2011-12-01

    A survey of boron in kerogen showed isotopically light δ11B values (0 to -50%) that are distinctly different from most mineral and natural water B reservoirs. Diagenesis releases this isotopically light B into pore fluids when hydrocarbons are generated, thus enriching oilfield brines in 10B. This observation suggests that borated biomolecules (BM) are primarily tetrahedral favoring 10B, whereas 11B is preferred in trigonal coordination. Plants, with optimal concentrations up to 100ppm, contribute more B than animal remains to sediment. Elephants are one of the largest herbivores on earth, consuming 200 - 250 kg of plant material/day and producing 50 kg of manure/day. They are inefficient at digestion, thus the manure contains >50% undigested plant material. Dung samples are therefore ideal for studying the δ11B of both the food input and digested output of a significant B supply to sedimentary systems. Horse and rabbit manure were studied for comparison to evaluate B isotope variations in the food supply and potential vital effects on the output. B-content and isotopic composition of dung plant material and digested fractions were measured in the solid state by secondary ion mass spectrometry. The digests were rinsed in 1.8% mannitol, a B-complexing agent, to remove surface adsorbed-B, then air dried and Au-coated for charge compensation. Results showed that the elephant diet contains 3-13 ppm B, with an average δ11B of -20 ± 0.8% (1σ), while rabbit food had 88 ppm B with a δ11B of -50 ± 1.3 %. The digested fraction of the elephant dung contains 4-10ppm B with average δ11B values of -12 ± 1.2%. In comparison, horse manure with 11-21 ppm B has a δ11B of -10.7 ± 0.5% and rabbit manure contains 2-3 ppm B with a δ11B of -8.8 ± 1%. Boron isotope compositions of these manures are indistinguishable (within error). Clearly plant material is a major contributor of isotopically light B to sediments. The herbivores studied fractionate their total B intake in

  6. Evolution and functional characterisation of melanopsins in a deep-sea chimaera (elephant shark, Callorhinchus milii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wayne I L Davies

    Full Text Available Non-visual photoreception in mammals is primarily mediated by two splice variants that derive from a single melanopsin (OPN4M gene, whose expression is restricted to a subset of retinal ganglion cells. Physiologically, this sensory system regulates the photoentrainment of many biological rhythms, such as sleep via the melatonin endocrine system and pupil constriction. By contrast, melanopsin exists as two distinct lineages in non-mammals, opn4m and opn4x, and is broadly expressed in a wide range of tissue types, including the eye, brain, pineal gland and skin. Despite these findings, the evolution and function of melanopsin in early vertebrates are largely unknown. We, therefore, investigated the complement of opn4 classes present in the genome of a model deep-sea cartilaginous species, the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii, as a representative vertebrate that resides at the base of the gnathostome (jawed vertebrate lineage. We reveal that three melanopsin genes, opn4m1, opn4m2 and opn4x, are expressed in multiple tissues of the elephant shark. The two opn4m genes are likely to have arisen as a result of a lineage-specific duplication, whereas "long" and "short" splice variants are generated from a single opn4x gene. By using a heterologous expression system, we suggest that these genes encode functional photopigments that exhibit both "invertebrate-like" bistable and classical "vertebrate-like" monostable biochemical characteristics. We discuss the evolution and function of these melanopsin pigments within the context of the diverse photic and ecological environments inhabited by this chimaerid holocephalan, as well as the origin of non-visual sensory systems in early vertebrates.

  7. Solar radiation during rewarming from torpor in elephant shrews: supplementation or substitution of endogenous heat production?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Michelle L; Mzilikazi, Nomakwezi; Bennett, Nigel C; McKechnie, Andrew E

    2015-01-01

    Many small mammals bask in the sun during rewarming from heterothermy, but the implications of this behaviour for their energy balance remain little understood. Specifically, it remains unclear whether solar radiation supplements endogenous metabolic thermogenesis (i.e., rewarming occurs through the additive effects of internally-produced and external heat), or whether solar radiation reduces the energy required to rewarm by substituting (i.e, replacing) metabolic heat production. To address this question, we examined patterns of torpor and rewarming rates in eastern rock elephant shrews (Elephantulus myurus) housed in outdoor cages with access to either natural levels of solar radiation or levels that were experimentally reduced by means of shade cloth. We also tested whether acclimation to solar radiation availability was manifested via phenotypic flexibility in basal metabolic rate (BMR), non-shivering thermogenesis (NST) capacity and/or summit metabolism (Msum). Rewarming rates varied significantly among treatments, with elephant shrews experiencing natural solar radiation levels rewarming faster than conspecifics experiencing solar radiation levels equivalent to approximately 20% or 40% of natural levels. BMR differed significantly between individuals experiencing natural levels of solar radiation and conspecifics experiencing approximately 20% of natural levels, but no between-treatment difference was evident for NST capacity or Msum. The positive relationship between solar radiation availability and rewarming rate, together with the absence of acclimation in maximum non-shivering and total heat production capacities, suggests that under the conditions of this study solar radiation supplemented rather than substituted metabolic thermogenesis as a source of heat during rewarming from heterothermy.

  8. 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.

  9. Northern Elephant Seals Memorize the Rhythm and Timbre of Their Rivals' Voices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathevon, Nicolas; Casey, Caroline; Reichmuth, Colleen; Charrier, Isabelle

    2017-08-07

    The evolutionary origin of rhythm perception, a cognitive ability essential to musicality, remains unresolved [1-5]. The ability to perceive and memorize rhythmic sounds is widely shared among humans [6] but seems rare among other mammals [7, 8]. Although the perception of temporal metrical patterns has been found in a few species, this ability has only been demonstrated through behavioral training [9] (but see [10] for an example of spontaneous tempo coordination in a bonobo), and there is no experimental evidence to indicate its biological function. Furthermore, there is no example of a non-human mammal able to remember and recognize auditory rhythmic patterns among a wide range of tempi. In the northern elephant seal Mirounga angustirostris, the calls of mature males comprise a rhythmic series of pulses, with the call of each individual characterized by its tempo and timbre; these individual vocal signatures are stable over years and across contexts [11]. Here, we report that northern elephant seal males routinely memorize and recognize the unique tempo and timbre of their rivals' voices and use this rhythmic information to individually identify competitors, which facilitates navigation within the social network of the rookery. By performing playbacks with natural and modified vocalizations, we show that males are sensitive to call rhythm disruption independently of modification of spectral features and that they use both temporal and spectral cues to identify familiar rivals. While spectral features of calls typically encode individual identity in mammalian vocalizations [12], this is the first example of this phenomenon involving sound rhythm. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Microbiological and chemical profiles of elephant grass inoculated with and without Lactobacillus plantarum and Pediococcus acidilactici.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Assar Ali; Xianjun, Yuan; Zhihao, Dong; Junfeng, Li; Sao, Tao

    2018-03-01

    The study was conducted to evaluate the microbiological and chemical profiles of elephant grass inoculated with and without different wild strains of lactic acid bacteria. Silage was prepared of four treatments and one control with three replicates as control (EKC, adding 2 ml/kg sterilizing water), Lactobacillus plantarum (USA commercial bacteria) (EKP), Lactobacillus plantarum (EKA), Pediococcus acidilactici (EKB), and Pediococcus acidilactici (SKD) isolated from King grass. Silage were prepared using polyethylene terephthalate bottles, and incubated at room temperature for different ensiling days. The pH and acetic acid (AA) were significantly (P < 0.05) reduced and lactic acid (LA), butyric acid (BA), and ethanol were significantly increased (P < 0.05) at 3, 5, 7, and 14 days in treatment groups as compared to control. Water-soluble carbohydrate (WSC) and NH 3 -N concentration was not affected at days 3, 5, and 7, but significantly (P < 0.05) reduced at 14 days in treatment groups as compared to control. The LA, BA, and ethanol were significantly (P < 0.05) increased and AA, WSC NH 3 -N, and yeast were significantly (P < 0.05) decreased at 30 days of ensiling in treatment groups as compared to control. It is recommended that the inoculation of LAB could improve the fermentation quality of elephant grass silage and further effort is needed to evaluate these effects on silage produced on farm scale and on animal production performance.

  11. Selecting elephant grass families and progenies to produce bioenergy through mixed models (REML/BLUP).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, E V; Daher, R F; Dos Santos, A; Vivas, M; Machado, J C; Gravina, G do A; de Souza, Y P; Vidal, A K; Rocha, A Dos S; Freitas, R S

    2017-05-18

    Brazil has great potential to produce bioenergy since it is located in a tropical region that receives high incidence of solar energy and presents favorable climatic conditions for such purpose. However, the use of bioenergy in the country is below its productivity potential. The aim of the current study was to select full-sib progenies and families of elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum S.) to optimize phenotypes relevant to bioenergy production through mixed models (REML/BLUP). The circulating diallel-based crossing of ten elephant grass genotypes was performed. An experimental design using the randomized block methodology, with three repetitions, was set to assess both the hybrids and the parents. Each plot comprised 14-m rows, 1.40 m spacing between rows, and 1.40 m spacing between plants. The number of tillers, plant height, culm diameter, fresh biomass production, dry biomass rate, and the dry biomass production were assessed. Genetic-statistical analyses were performed through mixed models (REML/BLUP). The genetic variance in the assessed families was explained through additive genetic effects and dominance genetic effects; the dominance variance was prevalent. Families such as Capim Cana D'África x Guaçu/I.Z.2, Cameroon x Cuba-115, CPAC x Cuba-115, Cameroon x Guaçu/I.Z.2, and IAC-Campinas x CPAC showed the highest dry biomass production. The family derived from the crossing between Cana D'África and Guaçu/I.Z.2 showed the largest number of potential individuals for traits such as plant height, culm diameter, fresh biomass production, dry biomass production, and dry biomass rate. The individual 5 in the family Cana D'África x Guaçu/I.Z.2, planted in blocks 1 and 2, showed the highest dry biomass production.

  12. Prolonged fasting does not increase oxidative damage or inflammation in postweaned northern elephant seal pups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vázquez-Medina, José Pablo; Crocker, Daniel E; Forman, Henry Jay; Ortiz, Rudy M

    2010-07-15

    Elephant seals are naturally adapted to survive up to three months of absolute food and water deprivation (fasting). Prolonged food deprivation in terrestrial mammals increases reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, oxidative damage and inflammation that can be induced by an increase in the renin-angiotensin system (RAS). To test the hypothesis that prolonged fasting in elephant seals is not associated with increased oxidative stress or inflammation, blood samples and muscle biopsies were collected from early (2-3 weeks post-weaning) and late (7-8 weeks post-weaning) fasted seals. Plasma levels of oxidative damage, inflammatory markers and plasma renin activity (PRA), along with muscle levels of lipid and protein oxidation, were compared between early and late fasting periods. Protein expression of angiotensin receptor 1 (AT(1)), pro-oxidant (Nox4) and antioxidant enzymes (CuZn- and Mn-superoxide dismutases, glutathione peroxidase and catalase) was analyzed in muscle. Fasting induced a 2.5-fold increase in PRA, a 50% increase in AT(1), a twofold increase in Nox4 and a 70% increase in NADPH oxidase activity. By contrast, neither tissue nor systemic indices of oxidative damage or inflammation increased with fasting. Furthermore, muscle antioxidant enzymes increased 40-60% with fasting in parallel with an increase in muscle and red blood cell antioxidant enzyme activities. These data suggest that, despite the observed increases in RAS and Nox4, an increase in antioxidant enzymes appears to be sufficient to suppress systemic and tissue indices of oxidative damage and inflammation in seals that have fasted for a prolonged period. The present study highlights the importance of antioxidant capacity in mammals during chronic periods of stress to help avoid deleterious systemic consequences.

  13. Biogas production from anaerobic codigestion of cowdung and elephant grass (Pennisetum Purpureum) using batch digester

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haryanto, Agus; Hasanudin, Udin; Afrian, Chandra; Zulkarnaen, Iskandar

    2018-03-01

    This study aimed at determining biogas production from codigestion of Elephant grass and cowdung using batch digester. Fresh grass was manually chopped with a maximum length of 3 cm. Chopped grass (25 kg) was perfectly mixed with fresh cowdung (25 kg). The mixture was introduced into a 220-liter batch drum digester. The substrate was diluted with water at different rates (P1 = 50 L, P2 = 75 L, and P3 = 100 L) and was stirred thoroughly. Six digesters were prepared as duplicate for each treatment. Two other digesters containing only 25 kg cowdung diluted with 25 L water were also provided as control treatment (P0). The digesters were air tightly sealed for 70 days. Observation was conducted on daily temperature, substrate pH (initial and final), TS and VS content, biogas yield and biogas composition. Results showed that final pH of grass containing substrate was in the acidic range, namely 4.50, 4.62, 6.82, whereas that of control (P0) was normal with pH of 7.30. Digester with substrate composition 25:25:100 (cowdung:grass:water) produced the highest biogas total (524.3 L). Biogas yield of codigestion, however, was much lower as compared to that of control, namely 7.35, 16.75, and 111.72 L/kg VS r respectively for treatment P1, P2, P3. with dilution rate of 50, 75, and 100 L. Biogas produced from control digester had methane content of 53.88%. In contrast, biogas resulted from all treatments contained low methane (the highest was 31.37%). Methane yield of 39.3 L/kg TS removal was achieved from digester with dilution 100 L (P3). Mechanical pretreatment is suggested to break Elephant grass down into smaller particles prior to introducing it into the digestion process.

  14. Estimates of heterosis parameters in elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach. for bioenergy production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruna R.S Menezes

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available With a high growth rate and a DM yield of up to 80 t ha-1 yr¹, elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach. has been utilized as an alternative source of energy. However, genotypes adapted to and productive in the different regions of Brazil need to be developed. Thus, the objectives of the present study were to estimate and evaluate heterotic effects in elephant-grass hybrids obtained in a partial diallel cross (5 x 5, with the aim of assisting the superior hybrids selection for bioenergy production. The experiment was conducted in Campos dos Goytacazes, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The following traits were evaluated: plant height (HGT, stem diameter (SD, leaf blade width (LBW, number of tillers per linear meter (NT, percentage of DM (%DM, and DM yield (DMY. The experiment was conducted in a randomized block design, with 35 treatments (five female parents, five male parents, and 25 hybrid combinations and three replicates. The adopted statistical model was that of Miranda Filho and Geraldi, in an adaptation of Gardner and Eberhart. Significant heterosis was observed for most traits in the rainy and dry seasons. Hybrid combinations H1 ('Cubano Pinda' x 'Mercker', H7 ('Cameroon-Piracicaba' x 'Três Rios', H8 ('Cameroon-Piracicaba' x 'Mercker 86-Mexico', H17 ('IAC-Campinas' x 'Três Rios', H18 ('IAC-Campinas' x 'Mercker 86-Mexico', and H25 ('Guacu/IZ.2' x 'Roxo' showed potential for use in breeding programs that aiming at develop clones with a energy biomass production capacity high.

  15. The role of foraging behaviour in the sexual segregation of the African elephant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shannon, Graeme; Page, Bruce R; Duffy, Kevin J; Slotow, Rob

    2006-11-01

    Elephants (Loxodonta africana) exhibit pronounced sexual dimorphism, and in this study we test the prediction that the differences in body size and sociality are significant enough to drive divergent foraging strategies and ultimately sexual segregation. Body size influences the foraging behaviour of herbivores through the differential scaling coefficients of metabolism and gut size, with larger bodied individuals being able to tolerate greater quantities of low-quality, fibrous vegetation, whilst having lower mass-specific energy requirements. We test two distinct theories: the scramble competition hypothesis (SCH) and the forage selection hypothesis (FSH). Comprehensive behavioural data were collected from the Pongola Game Reserve and the Phinda Private Game Reserve in South Africa over a 2.5-year period. The data were analysed using sex as the independent variable. Adult females targeted a wider range of species, adopted a more selective foraging approach and exhibited greater bite rates as predicted by the body size hypothesis and the increased demands of reproductive investment (lactation and pregnancy). Males had longer feeding bouts, displayed significantly more destructive behaviour (31% of observations, 11% for females) and ingested greater quantities of forage during each feeding bout. The independent ranging behaviour of adult males enables them to have longer foraging bouts as they experience fewer social constraints than females. The SCH was rejected as a cause of sexual segregation due to the relative abundance of low quality forage, and the fact that feeding heights were similar for both males and females. However, we conclude that the differences in the foraging strategies of the sexes are sufficient to cause spatial segregation as postulated by the FSH. Sexual dimorphism and the associated behavioural differences have important implications for the management and conservation of elephant and other dimorphic species, with the sexes effectively

  16. Why do African elephants (Loxodonta africana) simulate oestrus? An analysis of longitudinal data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bates, Lucy A; Handford, Rosie; Lee, Phyllis C; Njiraini, Norah; Poole, Joyce H; Sayialel, Katito; Sayialel, Soila; Moss, Cynthia J; Byrne, Richard W

    2010-04-07

    Female African elephants signal oestrus via chemicals in their urine, but they also exhibit characteristic changes to their posture, gait and behaviour when sexually receptive. Free-ranging females visually signal receptivity by holding their heads and tails high, walking with an exaggerated gait, and displaying increased tactile behaviour towards males. Parous females occasionally exhibit these visual signals at times when they are thought not to be cycling and without attracting interest from musth males. Using demographic and behavioural records spanning a continuous 28-year period, we investigated the occurrence of this "simulated" oestrus behaviour. We show that parous females in the Amboseli elephant population do simulate receptive oestrus behaviours, and this false oestrus occurs disproportionately in the presence of naïve female kin who are observed coming into oestrus for the first time. We compare several alternative hypotheses for the occurrence of this simulation: 1) false oestrus has no functional purpose (e.g., it merely results from abnormal hormonal changes); 2) false oestrus increases the reproductive success of the simulating female, by inducing sexual receptivity; and 3) false oestrus increases the inclusive fitness of the simulating female, either by increasing the access of related females to suitable males, or by encouraging appropriate oestrus behaviours from female relatives who are not responding correctly to males. Although the observed data do not fully conform to the predictions of any of these hypotheses, we rule out the first two, and tentatively suggest that parous females most likely exhibit false oestrus behaviours in order to demonstrate to naïve relatives at whom to direct their behaviour.

  17. NPK Fertilizers for Elephant Foot Yam (Amorphophallus paeoniifolius (Dennst. Nicolson Intercropped with Coffee Trees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edi Santosa

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACTFertilizer application in elephant foot yams (Amorphophallus paeoniifolius (Dennst. Nicolson intercropping system is rare in Indonesia, therefore, NPK fertilizers experiment was conducted under the shade of 10-year-old coffee plantation at Leuwikopo Experimental Farm, Bogor, Indonesia, in order to increase the productivity of elephant foot yam intercropped with coffee trees. Prior to planting, 20 ton ha-1 of goat manure was applied. Four NPK combinations, i.e., N, P2O5, K2O at the rate of 0, 0 and 0; 100, 60 and 80; 125, 60 and 100; and 150, 60 and 120 kg ha-1, were applied. Results showed that there were no significant differences in leaf number per plant, petiole size and rachis length among treatments. Application of NPK decreased photosynthetic rates, while increasing rate of N and K2O had no effect on photosynthetic rates. NPK application at the 100 N, 60 P2O5 and 80 K2O kg ha-1 (N100P60K80 treatment or larger prolonged growth duration regardless of NPK levels, and there was a close relationship between corm yield and growth duration. As a result, corm fresh mass was higher in the 100:60:80 kg ha-1 treatment than in control. In the N125P60K100 and N150P60K120 kg ha-1 treatments, leaves were damaged by heavy rains and winds, counteracting beneficial effect of NPK on growth duration and corm yield. These results suggested the importance of delay of entering dormancy for an increase in productivity of A. paeoniifolius.Keywords: NPK fertilizers, photosynthesis, productivity, prolong growth, tuber crop

  18. Why do African elephants (Loxodonta africana simulate oestrus? An analysis of longitudinal data.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucy A Bates

    Full Text Available Female African elephants signal oestrus via chemicals in their urine, but they also exhibit characteristic changes to their posture, gait and behaviour when sexually receptive. Free-ranging females visually signal receptivity by holding their heads and tails high, walking with an exaggerated gait, and displaying increased tactile behaviour towards males. Parous females occasionally exhibit these visual signals at times when they are thought not to be cycling and without attracting interest from musth males. Using demographic and behavioural records spanning a continuous 28-year period, we investigated the occurrence of this "simulated" oestrus behaviour. We show that parous females in the Amboseli elephant population do simulate receptive oestrus behaviours, and this false oestrus occurs disproportionately in the presence of naïve female kin who are observed coming into oestrus for the first time. We compare several alternative hypotheses for the occurrence of this simulation: 1 false oestrus has no functional purpose (e.g., it merely results from abnormal hormonal changes; 2 false oestrus increases the reproductive success of the simulating female, by inducing sexual receptivity; and 3 false oestrus increases the inclusive fitness of the simulating female, either by increasing the access of related females to suitable males, or by encouraging appropriate oestrus behaviours from female relatives who are not responding correctly to males. Although the observed data do not fully conform to the predictions of any of these hypotheses, we rule out the first two, and tentatively suggest that parous females most likely exhibit false oestrus behaviours in order to demonstrate to naïve relatives at whom to direct their behaviour.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  20. SUCCESSFUL TREATMENT OF DIGITAL OSTEITIS BY INTRAVENOUS REGIONAL PERFUSION OF CEFTIOFUR IN AN AFRICAN ELEPHANT (LOXODONTA AFRICANA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutton, Christopher J; Delnatte, Pauline G; Hollamby, Simon R; Crawshaw, Graham J

    2017-06-01

    A 41-yr-old African elephant ( Loxodonta africana ) presented with a swollen third digit of the left forelimb and a 2-cm hole in the pad. Corrective trimming, topical treatments, and an oral antibiotic resulted in apparent resolution; however, it reoccurred after 4 mo. Radiographs suggested bone lysis in the third phalanx, with the primary differential diagnosis being septic osteitis. Flushing with metronidazole solution and intravenous regional perfusion (IVRP) of the foot were commenced. A tourniquet was applied just above the carpus, an interdigital vein was identified by ultrasound, and into this vein 2 g (20 ml) of ceftiofur sodium solution, followed by 60 ml of heparinized saline, was administered. The foot was kept raised for 25 min and then the tourniquet was removed. IVRP was repeated every other day for 70 treatments over 6 mo. Healing occurred, which was confirmed radiographically. IVRP offers an excellent treatment modality in a well-trained elephant.

  1. Effective population size dynamics reveal impacts of historic climatic events and recent anthropogenic pressure in African elephants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Okello, J B A; Wittemyer, G; Rasmussen, Henrik Barner

    2008-01-01

    Two hundred years of elephant hunting for ivory, peaking in 1970-1980s, caused local extirpations and massive population declines across Africa. The resulting genetic impacts on surviving populations have not been studied, despite the importance of understanding the evolutionary repercussions...... of such human-mediated events on this keystone species. Using Bayesian coalescent-based genetic methods to evaluate time-specific changes in effective population size, we analysed genetic variation in 20 highly polymorphic microsatellite loci from 400 elephants inhabiting the greater Samburu-Laikipia region...... of northern Kenya. This area experienced a decline of between 80% and 90% in the last few decades when ivory harvesting was rampant. The most significant change in effective population size, however, occurred approximately 2500 years ago during a mid-Holocene period of climatic drying in tropical Africa...

  2. Enduring consequences of early experiences: 40 year effects on survival and success among African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Phyllis C; Bussière, Luc F; Webber, C Elizabeth; Poole, Joyce H; Moss, Cynthia J

    2013-04-23

    Growth from conception to reproductive onset in African elephants (Loxodonta africana) provides insights into phenotypic plasticity, individual adaptive plastic responses and facultative maternal investment. Using growth for 867 and life histories for 2652 elephants over 40 years, we demonstrate that maternal inexperience plus drought in early life result in reduced growth rates for sons and higher mortality for both sexes. Slow growth during early lactation was associated with smaller adult size, later age at first reproduction, reduced lifetime survival and consequently limited reproductive output. These enduring effects of trading slow early growth against immediate survival were apparent over the very long term; delayed downstream consequences were unexpected for a species with a maximum longevity of 70+ years and unpredictable environmental experiences.

  3. Mesquite pod meal in elephant grass silages - doi: 10.4025/actascianimsci.v35i3.12506

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Otávio Rodrigues Machado Neto

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated the chemical composition and in vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD of elephant grass silages at different growth stages (70, 90 and 110 days, with the addition (0, 5, 10 and 15%, on a fresh matter basis of mesquite pod meal. A completely randomized design (CRD was used in a factorial arrangement with four replications. PVC pipes 100 mm in diameter were used as experimental silos. After 30 days of ensilage, samples were taken from the open silos to determine chemical composition and IVDMD. The inclusion of mesquite pod meal (MPM increased (p 0.01 was detected between MPM concentrations and elephant grass cutting age for DM, CP and NDF contents in the silages. A decrease (p  

  4. The repair of a type Ia endoleak following thoracic endovascular aortic repair using a stented elephant trunk procedure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Rui-Dong; Zhu, Jun-Ming; Liu, Yong-Min; Chen, Lei; Li, Cheng-Nan; Xing, Xiao-Yan; Sun, Li-Zhong

    2018-04-01

    Type Ia endoleaks are not uncommon complications that occur after thoracic endovascular aortic repair (TEVAR). Because aortic arch vessels prevent extension of the landing zone, it is very difficult to manipulate a type Ia endoleak using an extension cuff or stent-graft, especially when the aortic arch is involved. Here, we retrospectively review our experience of surgical treatment of type Ia endoleak after TEVAR using a stented elephant trunk procedure. From July 2010 to August 2016, we treated 17 patients diagnosed with a type Ia endoleak following TEVAR using stented elephant trunk procedure. The mean age of our patients was 52 ± 8 years. The mean interval between TEVAR and the open surgical repair was 38 ± 43 months. All cases of type Ia endoleak (100%) were repaired successfully. There were no in-hospital deaths. One case required reintubation and continuous renal replacement therapy due to renal failure; this patient recovered smoothly before discharge. One other patient suffered a stroke and renal failure and did not fully recover following discharge, or follow-up. During follow-up, there were 3 deaths. Acceptable results were obtained using a stented elephant trunk procedure in patients with a type Ia endoleak after TEVAR. This technique allowed us to repair the proximal aortic arch lesions, surgically correct the type Ia endoleak, and promote false lumen thrombosis in the distal aorta. Implantation of a stented elephant trunk, with or without a concomitant aortic arch procedure, is an alternative approach for this type of lesion. Copyright © 2017 The American Association for Thoracic Surgery. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Age group estimation in free-ranging African elephants based on acoustic cues of low-frequency rumbles

    OpenAIRE

    Stoeger, Angela S.; Zeppelzauer, Matthias; Baotic, Anton

    2014-01-01

    Animal vocal signals are increasingly used to monitor wildlife populations and to obtain estimates of species occurrence and abundance. In the future, acoustic monitoring should function not only to detect animals, but also to extract detailed information about populations by discriminating sexes, age groups, social or kin groups, and potentially individuals. Here we show that it is possible to estimate age groups of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) based on acoustic parameters extracte...

  6. Gluconeogenesis is associated with high rates of tricarboxylic acid and pyruvate cycling in fasting northern elephant seals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Champagne, Cory D; Houser, Dorian S; Fowler, Melinda A; Costa, Daniel P; Crocker, Daniel E

    2012-08-01

    Animals that endure prolonged periods of food deprivation preserve vital organ function by sparing protein from catabolism. Much of this protein sparing is achieved by reducing metabolic rate and suppressing gluconeogenesis while fasting. Northern elephant seals (Mirounga angustirostris) endure prolonged fasts of up to 3 mo at multiple life stages. During these fasts, elephant seals maintain high levels of activity and energy expenditure associated with breeding, reproduction, lactation, and development while maintaining rates of glucose production typical of a postabsorptive mammal. Therefore, we investigated how fasting elephant seals meet the requirements of glucose-dependent tissues while suppressing protein catabolism by measuring the contribution of glycogenolysis, glycerol, and phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) to endogenous glucose production (EGP) during their natural 2-mo postweaning fast. Additionally, pathway flux rates associated with the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle were measured specifically, flux through phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK) and pyruvate cycling. The rate of glucose production decreased during the fast (F(1,13) = 5.7, P = 0.04) but remained similar to that of postabsorptive mammals. The fractional contributions of glycogen, glycerol, and PEP did not change with fasting; PEP was the primary gluconeogenic precursor and accounted for ∼95% of EGP. This large contribution of PEP to glucose production occurred without substantial protein loss. Fluxes through the TCA cycle, PEPCK, and pyruvate cycling were higher than reported in other species and were the most energetically costly component of hepatic carbohydrate metabolism. The active pyruvate recycling fluxes detected in elephant seals may serve to rectify gluconeogeneic PEP production during restricted anaplerotic inflow in these fasting-adapted animals.

  7. Global trends and factors associated with the illegal killing of elephants: A hierarchical bayesian analysis of carcass encounter data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burn, Robert W; Underwood, Fiona M; Blanc, Julian

    2011-01-01

    Elephant poaching and the ivory trade remain high on the agenda at meetings of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Well-informed debates require robust estimates of trends, the spatial distribution of poaching, and drivers of poaching. We present an analysis of trends and drivers of an indicator of elephant poaching of all elephant species. The site-based monitoring system known as Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE), set up by the 10(th) Conference of the Parties of CITES in 1997, produces carcass encounter data reported mainly by anti-poaching patrols. Data analyzed were site by year totals of 6,337 carcasses from 66 sites in Africa and Asia from 2002-2009. Analysis of these observational data is a serious challenge to traditional statistical methods because of the opportunistic and non-random nature of patrols, and the heterogeneity across sites. Adopting a bayesian hierarchical modeling approach, we used the proportion of carcasses that were illegally killed (PIKE) as a poaching index, to estimate the trend and the effects of site- and country-level factors associated with poaching. Important drivers of illegal killing that emerged at country level were poor governance and low levels of human development, and at site level, forest cover and area of the site in regions where human population density is low. After a drop from 2002, PIKE remained fairly constant from 2003 until 2006, after which it increased until 2008. The results for 2009 indicate a decline. Sites with PIKE ranging from the lowest to the highest were identified. The results of the analysis provide a sound information base for scientific evidence-based decision making in the CITES process.

  8. History of Animals using Isotope Records (HAIR): a 6-year dietary history of one family of African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerling, Thure E; Wittemyer, George; Ehleringer, James R; Remien, Christopher H; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2009-05-19

    The dietary and movement history of individual animals can be studied using stable isotope records in animal tissues, providing insight into long-term ecological dynamics and a species niche. We provide a 6-year history of elephant diet by examining tail hair collected from 4 elephants in the same social family unit in northern Kenya. Sequential measurements of carbon, nitrogen, and hydrogen isotope rations in hair provide a weekly record of diet and water resources. Carbon isotope ratios were well correlated with satellite-based measurements of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) of the region occupied by the elephants as recorded by the global positioning system (GPS) movement record; the absolute amount of C(4) grass consumption is well correlated with the maximum value of NDVI during individual wet seasons. Changes in hydrogen isotope ratios coincided very closely in time with seasonal fluctuations in rainfall and NDVI whereas diet shifts to relatively high proportions of grass lagged seasonal increases in NDVI by approximately 2 weeks. The peak probability of conception in the population occurred approximately 3 weeks after peak grazing. Spatial and temporal patterns of resource use show that the only period of pure browsing by the focal elephants was located in an over-grazed, communally managed region outside the protected area. The ability to extract time-specific longitudinal records on animal diets, and therefore the ecological history of an organism and its environment, provides an avenue for understanding the impact of climate dynamics and land-use change on animal foraging behavior and habitat relations.

  9. Global trends and factors associated with the illegal killing of elephants: A hierarchical bayesian analysis of carcass encounter data.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert W Burn

    Full Text Available Elephant poaching and the ivory trade remain high on the agenda at meetings of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES. Well-informed debates require robust estimates of trends, the spatial distribution of poaching, and drivers of poaching. We present an analysis of trends and drivers of an indicator of elephant poaching of all elephant species. The site-based monitoring system known as Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE, set up by the 10(th Conference of the Parties of CITES in 1997, produces carcass encounter data reported mainly by anti-poaching patrols. Data analyzed were site by year totals of 6,337 carcasses from 66 sites in Africa and Asia from 2002-2009. Analysis of these observational data is a serious challenge to traditional statistical methods because of the opportunistic and non-random nature of patrols, and the heterogeneity across sites. Adopting a bayesian hierarchical modeling approach, we used the proportion of carcasses that were illegally killed (PIKE as a poaching index, to estimate the trend and the effects of site- and country-level factors associated with poaching. Important drivers of illegal killing that emerged at country level were poor governance and low levels of human development, and at site level, forest cover and area of the site in regions where human population density is low. After a drop from 2002, PIKE remained fairly constant from 2003 until 2006, after which it increased until 2008. The results for 2009 indicate a decline. Sites with PIKE ranging from the lowest to the highest were identified. The results of the analysis provide a sound information base for scientific evidence-based decision making in the CITES process.

  10. Variability of Hormonal Stress Markers and Stress Responses in a Large Cross-Sectional Sample of Elephant Seals

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    regulation in a captive dolphin population PI: Cory Champagne This project examines roles of CBG and rT3 in the sister study on the Navy captive...bottlenose dolphin population. Molecular indicators of chronic stress in a model pinniped - the northern elephant seal. PI: Cory Champagne This...Khudyakov J.I., C.D. Champagne , L. Preeyanon, R.M. Ortiz, D.E. Crocker. 2015. Muscle transcriptome response to ACTH administration in a free-ranging

  11. The ties that bind: genetic relatedness predicts the fission and fusion of social groups in wild African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archie, Elizabeth A; Moss, Cynthia J; Alberts, Susan C

    2006-03-07

    Many social animals live in stable groups. In contrast, African savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana) live in unusually fluid, fission-fusion societies. That is, 'core' social groups are composed of predictable sets of individuals; however, over the course of hours or days, these groups may temporarily divide and reunite, or they may fuse with other social groups to form much larger social units. Here, we test the hypothesis that genetic relatedness predicts patterns of group fission and fusion among wild, female African elephants. Our study of a single Kenyan population spans 236 individuals in 45 core social groups, genotyped at 11 microsatellite and one mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) locus. We found that genetic relatedness predicted group fission; adult females remained with their first order maternal relatives when core groups fissioned temporarily. Relatedness also predicted temporary fusion between social groups; core groups were more likely to fuse with each other when the oldest females in each group were genetic relatives. Groups that shared mtDNA haplotypes were also significantly more likely to fuse than groups that did not share mtDNA. Our results suggest that associations between core social groups persist for decades after the original maternal kin have died. We discuss these results in the context of kin selection and its possible role in the evolution of elephant sociality.

  12. How immunocontraception can contribute to elephant management in small, enclosed reserves: Munyawana population as a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Druce, Heleen C; Mackey, Robin L; Slotow, Rob

    2011-01-01

    Immunocontraception has been widely used as a management tool to reduce population growth in captive as well as wild populations of various fauna. We model the use of an individual-based rotational immunocontraception plan on a wild elephant, Loxodonta africana, population and quantify the social and reproductive advantages of this method of implementation using adaptive management. The use of immunocontraception on an individual, rotational basis stretches the inter-calving interval for each individual female elephant to a management-determined interval, preventing exposing females to unlimited long-term immunocontraception use (which may have as yet undocumented negative effects). Such rotational immunocontraception can effectively lower population growth rates, age the population, and alter the age structure. Furthermore, such structured intervention can simulate natural process such as predation or episodic catastrophic events (e.g., drought), which regulates calf recruitment within an abnormally structured population. A rotational immunocontraception plan is a feasible and useful elephant population management tool, especially in a small, enclosed conservation area. Such approaches should be considered for other long-lived, social species in enclosed areas where the long-term consequences of consistent contraception may be unknown.

  13. How immunocontraception can contribute to elephant management in small, enclosed reserves: Munyawana population as a case study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heleen C Druce

    Full Text Available Immunocontraception has been widely used as a management tool to reduce population growth in captive as well as wild populations of various fauna. We model the use of an individual-based rotational immunocontraception plan on a wild elephant, Loxodonta africana, population and quantify the social and reproductive advantages of this method of implementation using adaptive management. The use of immunocontraception on an individual, rotational basis stretches the inter-calving interval for each individual female elephant to a management-determined interval, preventing exposing females to unlimited long-term immunocontraception use (which may have as yet undocumented negative effects. Such rotational immunocontraception can effectively lower population growth rates, age the population, and alter the age structure. Furthermore, such structured intervention can simulate natural process such as predation or episodic catastrophic events (e.g., drought, which regulates calf recruitment within an abnormally structured population. A rotational immunocontraception plan is a feasible and useful elephant population management tool, especially in a small, enclosed conservation area. Such approaches should be considered for other long-lived, social species in enclosed areas where the long-term consequences of consistent contraception may be unknown.

  14. Growth process in an elephant tusk: Age estimations based on temporal variations in bomb-radiocarbon content

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nakamura, Toshio, E-mail: nakamura@nendai.nagoya-u.ac.jp [Center for Chronological Research, Nagoya University, Chikusa, Nagoya, Aichi 464-8602 (Japan); Koike, Hiroko [Kyushu University Museum, Kyushu University, Hakozaki, Fukuoka, Fukuoka 814-0180 (Japan); Aizawa, Jun; Okuno, Mitsuru [Department of Earth System Science, Faculty of Science, Fukuoka University, 8-19-1 Nanakuma, Jonan-ku, Fukuoka, Fukuoka 814-0180 (Japan)

    2015-10-15

    In this study, {sup 14}C analysis by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) was applied to age estimation based on temporal variations in bomb-produced-{sup 14}C contents of a full elephant tusk registered at Kyushu University. The tusk measured 175 cm long and 13.8 cm in diameter at the root. Thirty tusk-fragment samples were used for {sup 14}C analysis with AMS to estimate the formation ages of different positions according to catalogued global {sup 14}C contents (F{sup 14}C). The F{sup 14}C value of the tip of the tusk suggested that the elephant was born around 1980, while that of the root suggested death around 1994, a lifespan of at least 14 years, rather shorter period than the average lifetime of an elephant (ca. 80 years). In addition, the F{sup 14}C values of fragments collected along a cross-sectional line suggested that the outer part of the tusk formed first with inner parts being deposited gradually with growth.

  15. Effective population size dynamics reveal impacts of historic climatic events and recent anthropogenic pressure in African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okello, J B A; Wittemyer, G; Rasmussen, H B; Arctander, P; Nyakaana, S; Douglas-Hamilton, I; Siegismund, H R

    2008-09-01

    Two hundred years of elephant hunting for ivory, peaking in 1970-1980s, caused local extirpations and massive population declines across Africa. The resulting genetic impacts on surviving populations have not been studied, despite the importance of understanding the evolutionary repercussions of such human-mediated events on this keystone species. Using Bayesian coalescent-based genetic methods to evaluate time-specific changes in effective population size, we analysed genetic variation in 20 highly polymorphic microsatellite loci from 400 elephants inhabiting the greater Samburu-Laikipia region of northern Kenya. This area experienced a decline of between 80% and 90% in the last few decades when ivory harvesting was rampant. The most significant change in effective population size, however, occurred approximately 2500 years ago during a mid-Holocene period of climatic drying in tropical Africa. Contrary to expectations, detailed analyses of four contemporary age-based cohorts showed that the peak poaching epidemic in the 1970s caused detectable temporary genetic impacts, with genetic diversity rebounding as juveniles surviving the poaching era became reproductively mature. This study demonstrates the importance of climatic history in shaping the distribution and genetic history of a keystone species and highlights the utility of coalescent-based demographic approaches in unravelling ancestral demographic events despite a lack of ancient samples. Unique insights into the genetic signature of mid-Holocene climatic change in Africa and effects of recent poaching pressure on elephants are discussed.

  16. Effects of a gonadotropin-releasing hormone vaccine on ovarian cyclicity and uterine morphology of an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boedeker, Nancy C; Hayek, Lee-Ann C; Murray, Suzan; de Avila, David M; Brown, Janine L

    2012-09-01

    This report describes the successful use of a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) vaccine to suppress ovarian steroidogenic activity and to treat hemorrhage and anemia associated with reproductive tract pathology in a 59-year-old Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). The Repro-BLOC GnRH vaccine was administered subcutaneously as a series of 4 boosters of increasing dose from 3 to 30 mg of recombinant ovalbumin-GnRH fusion protein given at variable intervals after initial vaccination with 3 mg protein. Efficacy was confirmed over a year after initial vaccination based on complete ovarian cycle suppression determined by serum progestagen analyses. Estrous cycle suppression was associated with a significant increase in GnRH antibody binding and subsequent decrease in serum luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone concentrations. Ultrasonographic examinations of the reproductive tract documented a reduction in uterine size and vascularity after immunization. The hematocrit level normalized soon after the initial intrauterine hemorrhage, and no recurrence of anemia has been detected. No substantive adverse effects were associated with GnRH vaccination. The results indicate that GnRH vaccination in elephants shows potential for contraception and management of uterine pathology in older elephants.

  17. 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 (pElephants 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 (pelephants having larger Total Space Experience than Asian and female elephants, respectively (P-valueelephant welfare outcomes.

  18. Growth process in an elephant tusk: Age estimations based on temporal variations in bomb-radiocarbon content

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakamura, Toshio; Koike, Hiroko; Aizawa, Jun; Okuno, Mitsuru

    2015-01-01

    In this study, "1"4C analysis by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) was applied to age estimation based on temporal variations in bomb-produced-"1"4C contents of a full elephant tusk registered at Kyushu University. The tusk measured 175 cm long and 13.8 cm in diameter at the root. Thirty tusk-fragment samples were used for "1"4C analysis with AMS to estimate the formation ages of different positions according to catalogued global "1"4C contents (F"1"4C). The F"1"4C value of the tip of the tusk suggested that the elephant was born around 1980, while that of the root suggested death around 1994, a lifespan of at least 14 years, rather shorter period than the average lifetime of an elephant (ca. 80 years). In addition, the F"1"4C values of fragments collected along a cross-sectional line suggested that the outer part of the tusk formed first with inner parts being deposited gradually with growth.

  19. Using camera traps and digital video to investigate the impact of Aethina tumida pest on honey bee (Apis mellifera adansonii reproduction and ability to keep away elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis in Gamba, Gabon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steeve Ngama

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Bees and elephant interactions are the core of a conservation curiosity since it has been demonstrated that bees, one of the smallest domesticated animals, can keep away elephants, the largest terrestrial animals. Yet, insects' parasites can impact the fitness and activity of the bees. Since their activity is critical to the repellent ability against elephants, this study assessed the impact of small hive beetles (Aethina tumida on bee (Apis mellifera adansonii reproduction and ability to keep forest elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis away. Because interspecies interactions are not easy to investigate, we have used camera traps and digital video to observe the activity of bees and their interactions with wild forest elephants under varying conditions of hive infestation with the small hive beetle, a common bee pest. Our results show that queen cells are good visual indicators of colony efficiency on keeping away forest elephants. We give evidences that small hive beetles are equivalently present in large and small bee colonies. Yet, results show no worries about the use of bees as elephant deterrents because of parasitism due to small hive beetles. Apis mellifera adansonii bees seem to effectively cope with small hive beetles showing no significant influence on its reproduction and ability to keep elephants away. This study also reports for the first time the presence of Aethina tumida as a constant beekeeping pest that needs to be addressed in Gabon.

  20. 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.

  1. A Meta-Analysis of Total Arch Replacement With Frozen Elephant Trunk in Acute Type A Aortic Dissection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takagi, Hisato; Umemoto, Takuya

    2016-01-01

    To assess the safety and efficacy, we performed a meta-analysis of total arch replacement with frozen elephant trunk in exclusive acute type A (neither chronic nor type B) aortic dissection. Databases including MEDLINE and EMBASE were searched through March 2015 using Web-based search engines (PubMed and OVID). Eligible studies were case series of frozen elephant trunk enrolling patients with acute type A (neither chronic nor type B) aortic dissection reporting at least early (in-hospital or 30-day) all-cause mortality. Study-specific estimates were combined in both fixed- and random-effect models. Fifteen studies enrolling 1279 patients were identified and included. Pooled analyses demonstrated the cardiopulmonary bypass time of 207.1 (95% confidence interval [CI], 186.1-228.1) minutes, aortic cross-clamp time of 123.3 (95% CI, 113.1-133.5) minutes, selective antegrade cerebral perfusion time of 49.3 (95% CI, 37.6-61.0) minutes, hypothermic circulatory arrest time of 39.0 (95% CI, 30.7-47.2) minutes, early mortality of 9.2% (95% CI, 7.7-11.0%), stroke of 4.8% (95% CI, 2.5-9.0%), spinal cord injury of 3.5% (95% CI, 1.9-6.6%), mid- to long-term (≥1-year) overall mortality of 13.0% (95% CI, 10.4-16.0%), reintervention of 9.6% (95% CI, 5.6-15.8%), and false lumen thrombosis of 96.8% (95% CI, 90.7-98.9%). Total arch replacement with frozen elephant trunk provides a safe alternative to that with conventional elephant trunk in patients with acute type A aortic dissection, with acceptable early mortality and morbidity. The rates of mid- to long-term reintervention and false lumen non-thrombosis may be lower in patients undergoing the frozen than conventional elephant trunk procedure. © The Author(s) 2016.

  2. Population sensitivities of animals to chronic ionizing radiation-model predictions from mice to elephant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sazykina, Tatiana G

    2018-02-01

    Model predictions of population response to chronic ionizing radiation (endpoint 'morbidity') were made for 11 species of warm-blooded animals, differing in body mass and lifespan - from mice to elephant. Predictions were made also for 3 bird species (duck, pigeon, and house sparrow). Calculations were based on analytical solutions of the mathematical model, simulating a population response to low-LET ionizing radiation in an ecosystem with a limiting resource (Sazykina, Kryshev, 2016). Model parameters for different species were taken from biological and radioecological databases; allometric relationships were employed for estimating some parameter values. As a threshold of decreased health status in exposed populations ('health threshold'), a 10% reduction in self-repairing capacity of organisms was suggested, associated with a decline in ability to sustain environmental stresses. Results of the modeling demonstrate a general increase of population vulnerability to ionizing radiation in animal species of larger size and longevity. Populations of small widespread species (mice, house sparrow; body mass 20-50 g), which are characterized by intensive metabolism and short lifespan, have calculated 'health thresholds' at dose rates about 6.5-7.5 mGy day -1 . Widespread animals with body mass 200-500 g (rat, common pigeon) - demonstrate 'health threshold' values at 4-5 mGy day -1 . For populations of animals with body mass 2-5 kg (rabbit, fox, raccoon), the indicators of 10% health decrease are in the range 2-3.4 mGy day -1 . For animals with body mass 40-100 kg (wolf, sheep, wild boar), thresholds are within 0.5-0.8 mGy day -1 ; for herbivorous animals with body mass 200-300 kg (deer, horse) - 0.5-0.6 mGy day -1 . The lowest health threshold was estimated for elephant (body mass around 5000 kg) - 0.1 mGy day -1 . According to the model results, the differences in population sensitivities of warm-blooded animal species to ionizing radiation are generally

  3. Population and individual elephant response to a catastrophic fire in Pilanesberg National Park.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leigh-Ann Woolley

    Full Text Available In predator-free large herbivore populations, where density-dependent feedbacks occur at the limit where forage resources can no longer support the population, environmental catastrophes may play a significant role in population regulation. The potential role of fire as a stochastic mass-mortality event limiting these populations is poorly understood, so too the behavioural and physiological responses of the affected animals to this type of large disturbance event. During September 2005, a wildfire resulted in mortality of 29 (18% population mortality and injury to 18, African elephants in Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa. We examined movement and herd association patterns of six GPS-collared breeding herds, and evaluated population physiological response through faecal glucocorticoid metabolite (stress levels. We investigated population size, structure and projected growth rates using a simulation model. After an initial flight response post-fire, severely injured breeding herds reduced daily displacement with increased daily variability, reduced home range size, spent more time in non-tourist areas and associated less with other herds. Uninjured, or less severely injured, breeding herds also shifted into non-tourist areas post-fire, but in contrast, increased displacement rate (both mean and variability, did not adjust home range size and formed larger herds post-fire. Adult cow stress hormone levels increased significantly post-fire, whereas juvenile and adult bull stress levels did not change significantly. Most mortality occurred to the juvenile age class causing a change in post-fire population age structure. Projected population growth rate remained unchanged at 6.5% p.a., and at current fecundity levels, the population would reach its previous level three to four years post-fire. The natural mortality patterns seen in elephant populations during stochastic events, such as droughts, follows that of the classic mortality pattern

  4. Elephant overflows: Multi-annual variability in Weddell Sea Deep Water driven by surface forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meijers, Andrew; Meredith, Michael; Abrahamsen, Povl; Naviera-Garabato, Alberto; Ángel Morales Maqueda, Miguel; Polzin, Kurt

    2015-04-01

    The volume of the deepest and densest water mass in Drake Passage, Lower Weddell Sea Deep Water (LWSDW), is shown to have been decreasing over the last 20 years of observations, with an associated reduction in density driven by freshening. Superimposed on this long term trend is a multi-annual oscillation with a period of 3-5 years. This variability only appears in Drake Passage; observations in the east of the Scotia Sea show a similar long term trend, but with no apparent multi-annual variability. Clues as to the source of this variability may be found on the continental slope at approximately 1000 m immediately north of Elephant Island on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. Here there is an intermittent westward flowing cold/fresh slope current whose volume and properties are strongly correlated with the LWSDW multi-annual variability, although leading the LWSDW by around one year. As the slope current and LWSDW are separated from each other both geographically and in water mass characteristics, their co-variability implies that they are responding to a common forcing, while the lag between deep LWSDW and shallow slope current provides information on the timescale of this response. A newly available high resolution temperature and salinity multi-year time series from the Elephant Island slope at 1000 m is compared with reanalysis and model derived surface fluxes, sea ice extent and wind stress. We find that there are strong positive relationships between the surface wind stress and heat flux over the shelf at the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula and the properties of the slope current at 1000 m on seasonal to annual timescales. We use tracer release experiments in the Southern Ocean State Estimate (SOSE) model to investigate the lag between the slope current and LWSDW timeseries and hypothesise that the observed multi-annual variability in both water masses is driven by surface forcing over the shelf and the overflow of modified water from the slope in

  5. Sticky snack for sengis: The Cape rock elephant-shrew, Elephantulus edwardii (Macroscelidea), as a pollinator of the Pagoda lily, Whiteheadia bifolia (Hyacinthaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wester, Petra

    2010-12-01

    Following the recent discovery of rodent pollination in the Pagoda lily, Whiteheadia bifolia (Hyacinthaceae) in South Africa, now the Cape rock elephant-shrew, Elephantulus edwardii (Macroscelidea, Afrotheria) is reported as an additional pollinator. Elephant-shrews, live-trapped near W. bifolia plants, were released in two terraria, containing the plants. The animals licked nectar with their long and slender tongues while being dusted with pollen and touching the stigmas of the flowers with their long and flexible noses. The captured elephant-shrews had W. bifolia pollen in their faeces, likely as a result of grooming their fur as they visited the flowers without eating or destroying them. The animals mostly preferred nectar over other food. This is the first record of pollination and nectar consumption in the primarily insectivorous E. edwardii, contributing to the very sparse knowledge about the behaviour of this unique clade of African mammals, as well as pollination by small mammals.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. PMID:26407173

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  9. Community-based human-elephant conflict mitigation: The value of an evidence-based approach in promoting the uptake of effective methods.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donny Gunaryadi

    Full Text Available Human-elephant conflict (HEC is a serious threat to elephants and can cause major economic losses. It is widely accepted that reduction of HEC will often require community-based methods for repelling elephants but there are few tests of such methods. We tested community-based crop-guarding methods with and without novel chili-based elephant deterrents and describe changes in farmers' willingness to adopt these methods following our demonstration of their relative effectiveness. In three separate field-trials that took place over almost two years (October 2005 -May 2007 in two villages adjacent to Way Kambas National Park (WKNP in Indonesia, we found that community-based crop-guarding was effective at keeping Asian elephants (Elephas maximus out of crop fields in 91.2% (52 out of 57, 87.6% (156 out of 178, and 80.0% (16 out of 20 of attempted raids. Once the method had been shown to be effective at demonstration sites, farmers in 16 villages around WKNP voluntarily adopted it during the July 2008 to March 2009 period and were able to repel elephants in 73.9% (150 out of 203 of attempted raids, with seven villages repelling 100% of attempted raids. These 16 villages had all experienced high levels of HEC in the preceding years; e.g. they accounted for >97% of the 742 HEC incidents recorded for the entire park in 2006. Our work shows, therefore, that a simple evidence-based approach can facilitate significant reductions in HEC at the protected area scale.

  10. The mummified brain of a pleistocene woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius) compared with the brain of the extant African elephant (Loxodonta africana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kharlamova, Anastasia S; Saveliev, Sergei V; Protopopov, Albert V; Maseko, Busisiwe C; Bhagwandin, Adhil; Manger, Paul R

    2015-11-01

    This study presents the results of an examination of the mummified brain of a pleistocene woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius) recovered from the Yakutian permafrost in Siberia, Russia. This unique specimen (from 39,440-38,850 years BP) provides the rare opportunity to compare the brain morphology of this extinct species with a related extant species, the African elephant (Loxodonta africana). An anatomical description of the preserved brain of the woolly mammoth is provided, along with a series of quantitative analyses of various brain structures. These descriptions are based on visual inspection of the actual specimen as well as qualitative and quantitative comparison of computed tomography imaging data obtained for the woolly mammoth in comparison with magnetic resonance imaging data from three African elephant brains. In general, the brain of the woolly mammoth specimen examined, estimated to weigh between 4,230 and 4,340 g, showed the typical shape, size, and gross structures observed in extant elephants. Quantitative comparative analyses of various features of the brain, such as the amygdala, corpus callosum, cerebellum, and gyrnecephalic index, all indicate that the brain of the woolly mammoth specimen examined has many similarities with that of modern African elephants. The analysis provided here indicates that a specific brain type representative of the Elephantidae is likely to be a feature of this mammalian family. In addition, the extensive similarities between the woolly mammoth brain and the African elephant brain indicate that the specializations observed in the extant elephant brain are likely to have been present in the woolly mammoth. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Kinematics and the implementation of an elephant's trunk manipulator and other continuum style robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hannan, Michael W.; Walker, Ian D.

    2003-01-01

    Traditionally, robot manipulators have been a simple arrangement of a small number of serially connected links and actuated joints. Though these manipulators prove to be very effective for many tasks, they are not without their limitations, due mainly to their lack of maneuverability or total degrees of freedom. Continuum style (i.e., continuous "back-bone") robots, on the other hand, exhibit a wide range of maneuverability, and can have a large number of degrees of freedom. The motion of continuum style robots is generated through the bending of the robot over a given section; unlike traditional robots where the motion occurs in discrete locations, i.e., joints. The motion of continuum manipulators is often compared to that of biological manipulators such as trunks and tentacles. These continuum style robots can achieve motions that could only be obtainable by a conventionally designed robot with many more degrees of freedom. In this paper we present a detailed formulation and explanation of a novel kinematic model for continuum style robots. The design, construction, and implementation of our continuum style robot called the elephant trunk manipulator is presented. Experimental results are then provided to verify the legitimacy of our model when applied to our physical manipulator. We also provide a set of obstacle avoidance experiments that help to exhibit the practical implementation of both our manipulator and our kinematic model. c2003 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Thai Elephant-Assisted Therapy Programme in Children with Down Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satiansukpong, Nuntanee; Pongsaksri, Maethisa; Sasat, Daranee

    2016-06-01

    The objectives of this study were to examine the effects of the Thai Elephant-Assisted Therapy Programme for children with Down syndrome (DS) (TETP-D) on balance, postural control and visual motor integration (VMI). A quasi-experimental design with blind control was used. Sixteen children with DS from grades 1 to 6, in a Thailand, public school were recruited for this study. The participants were divided voluntarily into two groups: control and experimental. These both groups received regular school activities, but the experimental group had added treatment, which consisted of TETP-D twice a week for 2 months. The balance subtest of the Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency 2, the postural control record form and Beery VMI were applied as outcome measure 1 week before and after the TETP-D. The results showed no significant difference in balance or postural control. However, a significant difference of VMI was shown between the two groups (z = 13.5, p = .04). Children with DS benefited from the TETP-D as it improved their VMI. The TETP-D could improve balance and postural control if provided within a suitable frequency and duration. Further research is needed to test this hypothesis. The limitations of this study are the significant differences in some aspects of the groups at pre-test such as gender and supine flexion of postural control. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  13. 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.

  14. Effect of different light spectra on the pigmentation of stored elephant garlic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comparini, Diego; Nguyen, Hieu Th; Ueda, Kota; Moritaka, Kyoshi; Kihara, Toshihiko; Kawano, Tomonori

    2018-05-01

    In the present study high-brightness light-emitting diodes were used to investigate the influence of different light spectra on garlic discoloration at different humidity levels and temperature. Many processes involved in the discoloration process of garlic/leek during storage under different conditions remain unanswered. For this reason in this study the ability of specific light spectra to enhance the production of desirable pigments has been evaluated in elephant garlic. It is well known that the pigments involved in the discoloration reaction are of great interest because of their potential ability to increase the nutritional value and health benefits of the food. In the present study, we show how the chlorophyll content of the sprout increases directly proportionally to the wavelength of the light tested; green/blue light delays the greening process of garlic young shoots whilst red/infra-red light irradiance conditions increase the greening process at different storage temperatures and humidity. Moreover different lights in the visible spectrum have been observed to stimulate and enhance the outer layer purple coloration. The use of different lights to modulate garlic pigmentation has been demonstrated and, in particular, the utilisation of red/green/blue lights and lower temperature resulted in higher red/pink pigments production supporting the hypothesis that this process involves more than one light to be fully performed and the low temperature is a condition that influences the formation of these products. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  15. Blueberry Cultivars Differ in Susceptibility to the Elephant Weevil, Orthorhinus cylindrirostris (Coleoptera: Curculionidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdoch, Gregory; Clift, Alan D; Mansfield, Sarah

    2017-10-01

    The accumulated damage from elephant weevil larvae, Orthorhinus cylindrirostris (F.) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), reduces blueberry yield and shortens the productive lifespan of blueberry plants by several years. Selective breeding to develop pest-resistant blueberry cultivars is a possible control option, but the relationship between O. cylindrirostris populations, plant damage, and blueberry yield has not been described. A field survey of 17 blueberry cultivars was conducted on a commercial farm to measure O. cylindrirostris populations (emergence holes and adult numbers) and yield from plants of different ages (2-12 yr). Blueberry plants accumulated damage over time, that is, older plants tended to have more O. cylindrirostris emergence holes than younger plants. All cultivars received some level of O. cylindrirostris attack but this did not always lead to yield losses. Newer cultivars that have been in production since 2000 were less susceptible to O. cylindrirostris than older cultivars. Removal of highly susceptible cultivars from commercial blueberry farms may reduce O. cylindrirostris populations. There is potential for selective breeding to increase plant resistance to O. cylindrirostris if the specific resistance mechanisms can be identified in blueberry. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. [Wound healing is still a game of " blind men and an elephant"].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, C M

    2016-10-20

    The wound healing includes non-healing and overhealing of the wounds. The results of wound healing are well known by people such as non-healing of the diabetic ulcer or hypertrophic scar after deep burn. In this issue, three papers involve in wound healing, one about autologous adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells injected into wound or scar of rabbit ear, one about severe hypoxia and hypoalbuminemia inducing human hypertrophic scar derived fibroblast apoptosis in vitro, and another about the dysfunction of protein kinase B/mammalian target of rapamycin signaling pathway contributing to the pathophysiological characteristics of diabetic skin and non-healing wound. The basic problem of hypertrophic scar study is lacking an ideal animal model. Although rabbit ear model or red Duroc pig model has been used widely for study on hypertrophic scar, they can not fully represent human dermal fibrosis after deep trauma on the skin. I recommend A novel nude mouse model of hypertrophic scarring using scratched full thickness human skin grafts recently published in Advances in Wound Care to the readers. The author emphasizes that the wound healing study is still in the situation like the game of " blind men and an elephant" .

  17. Ovulation, pregnancy, placentation and husbandry in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, W.R

    2006-01-01

    The African elephant reproduces so efficiently in the wild that overpopulation is now a serious problem in some game parks in Zimbabwe, Botswana and South Africa. The female reaches puberty between 10 and 12 years of age in the wild and, when in captivity, shows oestrous cycles of 14–15 weeks duration. She readily conceives a singleton in the wild yet her uterus has the capacity for twins. She shows a gestation length of 22 months and, in the wild, shows a population density and feed dependent intercalving interval of 4–8 years. The trophoblast erodes the lumenal epithelium of the endometrium and stimulates upgrowths of blood vessel-containing stromal villi, which develop eventually into the broad, tightly folded lamellae of the zonary, endotheliochorial placenta. Significant quantities of leaked maternal erythrocytes and ferric iron are phagocytosed by specialized trophoblast cells in the haemophagous zones at the lateral edges of the placental band. Although the placenta itself is endocrinologically inert, the foetal gonads, which enlarge greatly during the second half of pregnancy can synthesize 5α-dihydryoprogesterone and other 5α pregnane derivatives from cholesterol and pregnenolone. These products may synergize with progestagens secreted by the 2–8 large corpora lutea which are always present in the maternal ovaries throughout gestation to maintain the pregnancy state. PMID:16627297

  18. Eliminating Gender-Based Bias in Academic Medicine: More Than Naming the "Elephant in the Room".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Anna U; Chaiyachati, Krisda H; Weissman, Gary E; Liao, Joshua M

    2018-06-01

    Gender-based discrimination and bias are widespread in professional settings, including academic medicine. Overt manifestations such as sexual harassment have long been identified but attention is only more recently turning towards subtler forms of bias, including inequity in promotion and compensation. Barriers to progress vary across institutions and include lack of awareness, inadequate training, poor informational transparency, and challenging power dynamics. We propose five solutions that the academic medical community can adopt to not only name, but also address, gender-based bias as the proverbial elephant in the room: definitively identify the systemic nature of the problem, prompt those with influence and power to advance a culture of equity, broadly incorporate evidence-based explicit anti-sexist training, increase transparency of information related to professional development and compensation, and use robust research methods to study the drivers and potential solutions of gender inequity within academic medicine. While implementing these proposals is no small task, doing so is an important step in helping the academic medical community become more just.

  19. The Encounter of the Emblematic Tradition with Optics. The Anamorphic Elephant of Simon Vouet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez López, Susana

    2016-01-01

    In his excellent work Anamorphoses ou perspectives curieuses (1955), Baltrusaitis concluded the chapter on catoptric anamorphosis with an allusion to the small engraving by Hans Tröschel (1585-1628) after Simon Vouet's drawing Eight satyrs observing an elephant reflected on a cylinder, the first known representation of a cylindrical anamorphosis made in Europe. This paper explores the Baroque intellectual and artistic context in which Vouet made his drawing, attempting to answer two central sets of questions. Firstly, why did Vouet make this image? For what purpose did he ideate such a curious image? Was it commissioned or did Vouet intend to offer it to someone? And if so, to whom? A reconstruction of this story leads me to conclude that the cylindrical anamorphosis was conceived as an emblem for Prince Maurice of Savoy. Secondly, how did what was originally the project for a sophisticated emblem give rise in Paris, after the return of Vouet from Italy in 1627, to the geometrical study of catoptrical anamorphosis? Through the study of this case, I hope to show that in early modern science the emblematic tradition was not only linked to natural history, but that insofar as it was a central feature of Baroque culture, it seeped into other branches of scientific inquiry, in this case the development of catoptrical anamorphosis. Vouet's image is also a good example of how the visual and artistic poetics of the baroque were closely linked--to the point of being inseparable--with the scientific developments of the period.

  20. 800,000 year old mammoth DNA, modern elephant DNA or PCR artefact?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binladen, Jonas; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Willerslev, Eske

    2007-02-22

    Poulakakis and colleagues (Poulakakis et al. 2006: Biol. Lett. 2, 451-454), report the recovery of 'authentic' mammoth DNA from an 800,000-year-old fragment of bone excavated on the island of Crete. In light of results from other ancient DNA studies that indicate how DNA survival is unlikely 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 polymorphisms. Finally, we demonstrate using a simple BLAST search in GenBank that the claimed 'uniquely derived character state' for mammoths is in fact also found within modern elephants.

  1. Nuclear tracks, Sm isotopes and neutron capture effects in the Elephant Morraine shergottite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajan, R.S.; Lugmair, G.; Tamhane, A.S.; Poupeau, G.

    1986-01-01

    Nuclear track studies, uranium concentration measurements and Sm-isotope studies have been performed on both lithologies A and B of the Elephant Morraine shergottite, EETA 79001. Track studies show that EETA 79001 was a rather small object in space with a preatmospheric radius of 12+-2 cm, corresponding to a preatmospheric mass of 28+-13 kg. Phosphates have U-concentrations ranging from 0.3 to 1.3 ppm. There are occasional phosphates with excess fission tracks, possibly produced from neutron induced fission of U and Th, during the regolith exposure in the shergottite parent body (SPB). Sm-isotope studies, while not showing any clear cut excess in 150 Sm, enable us to derive meaningful upper limits to thermal neutron fluences of 2 to 3x10 15 n/cm 2 , during a possible regolith irradiation. These limits are consistent with the track data and also enable us to derive an upper limit to the neutron exposure age of EETA 79001 of 55 Myr in the SPB regolith. (author)

  2. Nuclear tracks, Sm isotopes and neutron capture effects in the Elephant Morraine shergottite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajan, R.S.; Lugmair, G.; Tamhane, A.S.; Poupeau, G.

    1985-01-01

    Nuclear track studies, uranium concentration measurements and Sm-isotope studies have been performed on both lithologies A and B of the Elephant Morraine Shergottite, EETA 79001. Track studies show that EETA 79001 was a rather small object in space with a preatmospheric radius of 12 +-2cm, corresponding to a preatmospheric mass of 28 +- 13 kg. U-concentrations measurements indicate that phosphates have concentrations ranging from 0.3 to 1.3 ppm. There are occasional phosphates with excess fission tracks, possibly produced from neutron induced fission of U and Th, during the regolith exposure in the shergottite parent body (SPB). Sm-isotope studies, while not showing any clear cut excess in 150 Sm, enable us to derive meaningful upper limits to thermal neutron fluences of 2 to 3x10 15 n/cm 2 , during a possible regolith irradiation. These limits are consistent with that required to explain the track data and also enable us to derive an upper limit to the neutron exposure age of EETA 79001 of 55 Myr in the SPB regolith. (Author) [pt

  3. Elephants in space the past, present and future of life and the universe

    CERN Document Server

    Moore, Ben

    2014-01-01

    This book is about the history and future of life and the universe, written at a level that any educated lay-person can understand and enjoy. It describes our place in time and space, how we got here and where we are going. It will take you on a journey from the beginning of time to the end of the universe to uncover our origins and reveal our destiny. It will explain how mankind acquired this knowledge starting from the beginning of civilization when the ancient Greeks first began to ask questions about the nature of the world around them. Ben Moore takes us on a path of discovery that connects astrophysics with subjects as varied as biology, neuroscience and evolution; from the origin of atoms to how stars shine and die, from ants and elephants to space travel and extra-terrestrial life. But as our universe grows older and its stars fade away and stop shining, can life continue for eternity or is all life destined for complete extinction? And what is the purpose of all of this anyway?! On the German edition...

  4. Streptococcus oriloxodontae sp. nov., isolated from the oral cavities of elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinozaki-Kuwahara, Noriko; Saito, Masanori; Hirasawa, Masatomo; Takada, Kazuko

    2014-11-01

    Two strains were isolated from oral cavity samples of healthy elephants. The isolates were Gram-positive, catalase-negative, coccus-shaped organisms that were tentatively identified as a streptococcal species based on the results of biochemical tests. Comparative 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis suggested classification of these organisms in the genus Streptococcus with Streptococcus criceti ATCC 19642(T) and Streptococcus orisuis NUM 1001(T) as their closest phylogenetic neighbours with 98.2 and 96.9% gene sequence similarity, respectively. When multi-locus sequence analysis using four housekeeping genes, groEL, rpoB, gyrB and sodA, was carried out, similarity of concatenated sequences of the four housekeeping genes from the new isolates and Streptococcus mutans was 89.7%. DNA-DNA hybridization experiments suggested that the new isolates were distinct from S. criceti and other species of the genus Streptococcus. On the basis of genotypic and phenotypic differences, it is proposed that the novel isolates are classified in the genus Streptococcus as representatives of Streptococcus oriloxodontae sp. nov. The type strain of S. oriloxodontae is NUM 2101(T) ( =JCM 19285(T) =DSM 27377(T)). © 2014 IUMS.

  5. Streptococcus loxodontisalivarius sp. nov. and Streptococcus saliviloxodontae sp. nov., isolated from oral cavities of elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Masanori; Shinozaki-Kuwahara, Noriko; Hirasawa, Masatomo; Takada, Kazuko

    2014-09-01

    Four Gram-stain-positive, catalase-negative, coccoid-shaped organisms were isolated from elephant oral cavities. The isolates were tentatively identified as streptococcal species based on the results of biochemical tests. Comparative 16S rRNA gene sequencing studies confirmed the organisms to be members of the genus Streptococcus. Two isolates (NUM 6304(T) and NUM 6312) were related most closely to Streptococcus salivarius with 96.8 % and 93.1 % similarity based on the 16S rRNA gene and the RNA polymerase β subunit encoding gene (rpoB), respectively, and to Streptococcus vestibularis with 83.7 % similarity based on the 60 kDa heat-shock protein gene (groEL). The other two isolates (NUM 6306(T) and NUM 6318) were related most closely to S. vestibularis with 97.0 % and 82.9 % similarity based on the 16S rRNA and groEL genes, respectively, and to S. salivarius with 93.5 % similarity based on the rpoB gene. Based on phylogenetic and phenotypic evidence, these isolates are suggested to represent novel species of the genus Streptococcus, for which the names Streptococcus loxodontisalivarius sp. nov. (type strain NUM 6304(T) = JCM 19287(T) = DSM 27382(T)) and Streptococcus saliviloxodontae sp. nov. (type strain NUM 6306(T) = JCM 19288(T) = DSM 27513(T)) are proposed. © 2014 IUMS.

  6. Inter-generational change in African elephant range use is associated with poaching risk, primary productivity and adult mortality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldenberg, Shifra Z; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Wittemyer, George

    2018-05-30

    Repeated use of the same areas may benefit animals as they exploit familiar sites, leading to consistent home ranges over time that can span generations. Changing risk landscapes may reduce benefits associated with home range fidelity, however, and philopatric animals may alter movement in response to new pressures. Despite the importance of range changes to ecological and evolutionary processes, little tracking data have been collected over the long-term nor has range change been recorded in response to human pressures across generations. Here, we investigate the relationships between ecological, demographic and human variables and elephant ranging behaviour across generations using 16 years of tracking data from nine distinct female social groups in a population of elephants in northern Kenya that was heavily affected by ivory poaching during the latter half of the study. Nearly all groups-including those that did not experience loss of mature adults-exhibited a shift north over time, apparently in response to increased poaching in the southern extent of the study area. However, loss of mature adults appeared to be the primary indicator of range shifts and expansions, as generational turnover was a significant predictor of range size increases and range centroid shifts. Range expansions and northward shifts were associated with higher primary productivity and lower poached carcass densities, while westward shifts exhibited a trend to areas with higher values of primary productivity and higher poached carcass densities relative to former ranges. Together these results suggest a trade-off between resource access, mobility and safety. We discuss the relevance of these results to elephant conservation efforts and directions meriting further exploration in this disrupted society of a keystone species. © 2018 The Author(s).

  7. [Bentall operation combined with total arch replacement and stented elephant trunk implantation for serious Debakey I aortic dissecting aneurysm].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Tian-Xiang; Wang, Chun; Zhang, Yu-Hai

    2008-12-01

    To summarize the clinical experience of Bentall operation combined with total arch replacement and stented elephant trunk implantation for serious Debakey I aortic dissecting aneurysm. Twelve patients with serious Debakey I aortic dissecting aneurysm underwent surgical treatment from January 2005 to December 2007. There were 10 male and 2 female with the mean age of (40.1 +/- 9.5) years old. There were acute aortic dissection in 9 cases, chronic aortic dissection in 3 cases. The inner diameter of aorta was (5.3 +/- 1.8) cm. There were Marfan syndrome in 4 cases, aortic regurgitation in all cases, severely persistent chest pain in 9 cases, acute left heart failure in 8 cases, and cardiac tamponade in 4 cases. Bentall operations combined with total arch replacement and stented elephant trunk implantation were performed by using deep hypothermic circulatory arrest and antegrade selective cerebral perfusion in all cases. Urgent surgery underwent in 9 cases. The mean interval between the onset of aortic dissection and the accomplishment of surgery was (41.0 +/- 15.9) hours. Cardiopulmonary bypass time was (191 +/- 26) min, average cross clamp time was (134 +/- 31) min, and average deep hypothermic circulatory arrest time was (50.0 +/- 14.5) min. One patient died in hospital. The time stayed in ICU was 3 to 27 d. Mental disorder in 6 cases, hemi-paralysis in 1 case, amputation in 1 case, hemorrhage of anastomosis in 1 case, hemorrhage of alimentary tract in 1 case, and pleural effusion in 4 cases were recorded. Eleven cases were followed-up for 8 weeks to 36 months. There were no bending of the stents and no obstruction in the vascular prosthesis.No re-operation was needed. One case died 6 months postoperatively. Bentall operation combined with total arch replacement and stented elephant trunk implantation is safe and effective for serious Debakey I aortic dissecting aneurysm, while good organs protection and consummate cardiopulmonary bypass were taken.

  8. Relation between the Macroscopic Pattern of Elephant Ivory and Its Three-Dimensional Micro-Tubular Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albéric, Marie; Dean, Mason N.; Gourrier, Aurélien; Wagermaier, Wolfgang; Dunlop, John W. C.; Staude, Andreas; Fratzl, Peter; Reiche, Ina

    2017-01-01

    Macroscopic, periodic, dark and bright patterns are observed on sections of elephant tusk, in the dentin part (ivory). The motifs—also called Schreger pattern—vary depending on the orientation in the tusk: on sections perpendicular to the tusk axis, a checkerboard pattern is present whereas on sections longitudinal to it, alternating stripes are observed. This pattern has been used to identify elephant and mammoth ivory in archeological artifacts and informs on the continuous tissue growth mechanisms of tusk. However, its origin, assumed to be related to the 3D structure of empty microtubules surrounded by the ivory matrix has yet to be characterized unequivocally. Based on 2D observations of the ivory microtubules by means of a variety of imaging techniques of three different planes (transverse, longitudinal and tangential to the tusk axis), we show that the dark areas of the macroscopic pattern are due to tubules oblique to the surface whereas bright areas are related to tubules parallel to it. The different microstructures observed in the three planes as well as the 3D data obtained by SR-μCT analysis allow us to propose a 3D model of the microtubule network with helical tubules phase-shifted in the tangential direction. The phase shift is a combination of a continuous phase shift of π every 1 mm with a stepwise phase shift of π/2 every 500 μm. By using 3D modeling, we show how the 3D helical model better represents the experimental microstructure observed in 2D planes compared to previous models in the literature. This brings new information on the origin of the unique Schreger pattern of elephant ivory, crucial for better understanding how archaeological objects were processed and for opening new routes to rethink how biological materials are built. PMID:28125603

  9. Elective frozen elephant trunk procedure using the E-Vita Open Plus prosthesis in 94 patients: a multicentre French registry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhoye, Jean-Philippe; Belhaj Soulami, Reda; Fouquet, Olivier; Ruggieri, Vito Giovanni; Kaladji, Adrien; Tomasi, Jacques; Sellin, Michel; Farhat, Fadi; Anselmi, Amedeo

    2017-10-01

    Our goal was to evaluate the operative outcomes of the frozen elephant trunk technique using the E-Vita Open Plus® hybrid prosthesis in chronic aortic arch diseases and report clinical and radiological outcomes at the 1-year follow-up. As determined from a prospective multicentre registry, 94 patients underwent frozen elephant trunk procedures using the E-Vita Open Plus hybrid device for the treatment of chronic aortic conditions, including 50% chronic aortic dissections, 40% degenerative aneurysms and 10% miscellaneous indications. Fifty percent of the cases were reoperations. The perioperative mortality rate was 11.7%. Spinal cord ischaemia and stroke rates were 4% and 9.6%, respectively. The mean cardiopulmonary bypass time was 252 ± 97 min, cardiac ischaemia time was 152 ± 53 min and cerebral perfusion time was 82 ± 22 min. Concomitant procedures were observed in 15% of patients. Among the 83 surviving patients, the survival rate after the 1-year follow-up was 98%. Eleven percent of patients underwent endovascular completion, whereas 4% of patients required aortic reintervention at 1 year. The E-Vita Open Plus hybrid device confirms the favourable short- and mid-term outcomes offered by its predecessor in frozen elephant trunk procedures in patients with chronic aortic arch disease. Implantation of the E-Vita Open Plus is associated with good 1-year survival rates, good rates of favourable aortic remodelling in both chronic dissection and degenerative aneurysms and a reproducible technique in a multicentre registry. Continued follow-up is required due to the risk of evolution at the downstream aorta. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. All rights reserved.

  10. Interaction between fires and elephants in relation to vegetation structure and composition of miombo woodlands in northern Mozambique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, Natasha Sofia

    Miombo woodlands represent one of the most important dry deciduous ecosystems in southern Africa. They provide goods and services for over 80% of the population in the sub-continent. The ecology of this important ecosystem is strongly defined by the trio climate-fire-herbivory. Thus, miombo woodlands have a key role in the regional, and the global, energy, water and carbon balances. Niassa Reserve located in northern Mozambique, embodies the largest and most pristine conservation area of miombo woodlands in the region. It was left abandoned for almost twenty years of armed conflict in Mozambique. Currently it has the lowest human population and the highest density of elephants within miombo woodlands in the country. Fires occur every year within Niassa Reserve. Thus, Niassa Reserve represents a key area to investigate the relationships between vegetation and environmental drivers, a crucial question in miombo woodlands. The goal of this study is to contribute to the understanding of the vegetation dynamics in relation to rainfall, fire and herbivory by elephants. To accomplish this goal, I used an innovative approach within miombo woodlands that couples field and remote sensing data. Field data collection aimed to gather information on woody species composition, structure and production (measured as biomass and leaf area index). Production data was used to calibrate remote sensing data and address large-scale variations in woody vegetation production. The results from this study indicate that there is a gradient of decreasing fire frequency, elephant density and rainfall and increasing woody production from east to west of Niassa Reserve. There is also a varied species composition along the same direction. These results provide information for ecological models predicting ecosystem dynamics under environmental changing conditions. Regionally, this study contributes to the understanding of the fundamental functioning of miombo woodlands and the associated driving

  11. Free-swimming northern elephant seals have low field metabolic rates that are sensitive to an increased cost of transport

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maresh, Jennifer L; Simmons, Samantha E; Crocker, Daniel E

    2014-01-01

    locomotion, elephant seals had low energy requirements (106.5±28.2 kJ kg−1 day−1), approaching or even falling below predictions of basal requirements. Seals responded to a small increase in locomotion costs by spending more time resting between dives (149±44 s) compared with matched control treatments (102......Widely ranging marine predators often adopt stereotyped, energy-saving behaviours to minimize the energetic cost of transport while maximizing energy gain. Environmental and anthropogenic disturbances can disrupt energy balance by prompting avoidance behaviours that increase transport costs...

  12. Arch translocation and the intra-arch elephant-trunk technique with collared graft for extended chronic dissecting aortic aneurysm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ikenaga Shigeru

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Management of extensive, chronic, dissecting aortic aneurysms after prior repair of the ascending aorta presents a technical challenge for surgeons. A symptomatic 64-year-old patient was admitted for elective surgical repair of an aortic annular dilatation, causing severe aortic regurgitation, and a Crawford type II extended thoracoabdominal aneurysm, 4 years after he underwent primary repair of an acute aortic dissection. The aorta was diffusely dilated, and there were no sites beyond the distal aortic arch where anastomosis could be performed. We successfully performed total aortic replacement with a 2-stage strategy, using an arch translocation technique and an intra-arch elephant-trunk technique.

  13. Elephant grass treated with alkali Capim-elefante tratado com compostos alcalinos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gleidson Giordano Pinto de Carvalho

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available The objective was determine dry matter (DM, crude protein (CD, neutral detergent fiber (NDF, acid detergent (ADF, cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin, ash