Behavioural and endocrinological parameters of female African and Asian elephants

Reproduction of African elephants Loxodonta africana and Asian elephants Elephas maximus has in the past been poor in European zoos and juvenile survival has been low. A range of potential complications, such as stillbirths or maternal aggression towards the calf, makes it imperative that the date of parturition is predicted as accurately as possible. Behavioural, […]

A survey of the management and development of captive African elephant (Loxodonta africana) calves: birth to three months of age

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20195.abs We used four surveys to collect information about the birth, physical growth, and behavioral development of 12 African elephant calves born in captivity. The management of the birth process and neonatal care involved a variety of standard procedures. All of the calves were born at night, between 7PM and 7AM. The calves showed […]

Reproduction in the yellow-bellied sea snake (Pelamis platurus) from Panama: Field and laboratory observations

Abstract 10.1002/(SICI)1098-2361(1996)15:33.3.CO;2-R Little is known of the reproductive biology of the yellow-bellied sea snake (Pelamis platurus), a species widely distributed in the Indo-Pacific and eastern Pacific Oceans. We observed mating, birth, and free-ranging neonates of P. platurus while collecting this snake once a month over 19 months in the Gulf of Chiriquí, Panama. A pair […]

Endocrine and ultrasonographic characterization of a successful pregnancy in a Sumatran rhinoceros (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) supplemented with a synthetic progestin

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.10131.abs A Sumatran rhinoceros with a history of early pregnancy loss was supplemented with a synthetic progestin, altrenogest (Regu-Mate®), and delivered a healthy, full-term calf 475 days after mating. Serum hormone concentrations were measured throughout gestation, and ultrasonography was used to monitor embryo/fetal growth and viability. The embryonic vesicle growth curve was characterized by […]

Effects of management practices on the timing of captive chimpanzee births

Most wild and captive nonhuman primates give birth nocturnally. Circadian rhythm mechanisms are a principal determinant of the nonrandom initiation of labor, but it has been suggested that the decreased human activity and increased seclusion over the weekend in laboratory primate colonies may result in an effect whereby births are confined mainly to the quiet […]

Behavioural predictors of the start of normal and dystocic calving in dairy cows and heifers

The individual monitoring of dairy cows around the time of calving is important to identify calving difficulties or health problems as early as possible. This study aims to identify whether there are differences in the behaviour before calving, between heifers and cows, and between those that are assisted at calving and those that are not. […]

Prepartum plasma estradiol and postpartum cortisol, but not oxytocin, are associated with interindividual and breed differences in the expression of maternal behaviour in sheep

Consistent, individual differences in the expression of maternal behaviour have been described in several species including the sheep. The neuroendocrine mechanisms underlying the onset of maternal behaviour in the sheep have been described, although the relationship between hormonal events and individual differences in behaviour has yet to be determined. In this study, we examined whether […]

Maternal care of rabbits in the lab and on the farm: Endocrine regulation of behavior and productivity

Maternal behavior in rabbits has been well described in the wild, the laboratory, and the farm. Salient characteristics include: (a) the construction of a nest (inside an underground burrow or a box), composed of straw/grass and body hair and (b) the display of a single, brief (ca. 3 min) nursing bout per day. The onset and […]

Peri-natal environmental effects on maternal behaviour, pituitary and adrenal activation, and the progress of parturition in the primiparous sow

Maternal behaviour in free-ranging sows is normally performed in an isolated nest that the sow has built during the pre-parturient period. Consequently there is much concern over the use of restrictive farrowing crates, in which manipulable substrates are often not provided, for parturient sows under commercial conditions. This study examined the impact of the provision […]

Fence Line Pacing in Farmed Red Deer Hinds at Calving

The frequency, intensity and location of fence line pacing were observed daily, in four groups of six farmed red deer hinds, over a 3-week period at calving. The groups were confined in neighbouring paddocks (5000m2 in area; two containing a wooden shelter) adjacent to deer yards containing an observation hide. At 1l00h, a person entered […]