CZAAWE Resource Article

Annual variations in plasma retinol and alpha-tocopherol levels in gentoo and rockhopper penguins
Publication Type 
Journal Article
Year of publication 
Zoo Biology
Abstract 10.1002/zoo.1430120507.abs Blood samples were taken throughout the year from captive gentoo Pygoscelis papua (n = 5) and rockhopper Eudyptes crestatus (n = 10) penguins to measure seasonal variations in retinol and alpha-tocopherol levels. Retinol levels ranged from .58 μg/ml to 1.09 μg/ml and alpha-tocopherol levels from 30.8 μg/ml to 50.7 μg/ml for the gentoo penguins. The rockhopper penguins' retinol levels ranged from .63 μg/ml to 1.14 μg/ml and alpha-tocopherol from 22.3 μg/ml to 40.8 μg/ml. Changes in body mass were used as an indicator of the start and duration of feather moult. Food consumption was recorded daily for the year, and the vitamin A and E intake was calculated. Blood vitamin levels of penguins on a supplemented diet were similar to those in the wild. © 1993 Wiley-Liss, Inc.