CZAAWE Resource Article

Nutrition and behavioral management of bottle-raised moose calves
Publication Type 
Journal Article
Year of publication 
Zoo Biology
Abstract 10.1002/(SICI)1098-2361(1997)16:6<495::AID-ZOO3>3.3.CO;2-W The exceedingly high mortality rates generally associated with artificially raising neonatal moose frequently can be attributed to improper nutritional management and poor husbandry techniques. Dietary-induced diarrhea caused by inappropriate milk replacers is common in moose calves raised in captivity. To avoid diarrhea, calves are often purposefully underfed, resulting in poor growth rates during the first 4 weeks when maternally raised calves rely on milk as their sole energy source. We developed a milk formula and feeding protocol modeled after milk composition and neonatal intake rates measured in maternally raised moose calves. Growth rates for bottle-raised calves during the first 30 days (752 g/day) were similar to maternally raised calves and at least twice that of most previously published bottle-raising efforts. No diet-induced gastrointestinal disorders were encountered, and all calves were successfully weaned and survived their first year. Zoo Biol 16:495–503, 1997. © 1997 Wiley-Liss, Inc.