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Differences in fecal particle size between free-ranging and captive individuals of two browser species

(2008) ZOO BIOLOGY. 27(1). p.70-77
Author
Organization
Abstract
Data from captive animals indicated that browsing (BR) ruminants have larger fecal particles-indicative of lesser chewing efficiency-than grazers (GR). To answer whether this reflects fundamental differences between the animal groups, or different reactions of basically similar organisms to diets fed in captivity, we compared mean fecal particle size (MPS) in a GR and a BR ruminant (aurox Bos primigenius taurus, giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis) and a GR and a BR hindgut fermenter (Przewalski's horse Equus ferus przewalskii, lowland tapir Tapirus terrestris), both from captivity and from the wild. As would be expected owing to a proportion of finely ground, pelleted feeds in captive diets, MPS was smaller in captive than free-ranging GR. In contrast, MPS was drastically higher in captive than in free-ranging BR of either digestion type. Thus, the difference in MPS between GR and BR was much more pronounced among captive than free-ranging animals. The results indicate that BR teeth have adapted to their natural diet so that in the wild, they achieve a particle size reduction similar to that of GR. However, although GR teeth seem equally adapted to food ingested in captivity, the BR teeth seem less well suited to efficiently chew captive diets. In the case of ruminants, less efficient particle size reduction could contribute to potential clinical problems like "rumen blockage" and bezoar formation. Comparisons of MPS between free-ranging and captive animals might offer indications for the physical suitability of zoo diets.
Keywords
grazer, ruminant, browser, teeth, captive diet, mastication, GIRAFFA-CAMELOPARDALIS, HERBIVORES, DIGESTIBILITY, REDUCTION, RUMINANTS, PASSAGE, MAMMALS, FORAGE, PLANT, RUMEN

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Chicago
Hummel, Jürgen, Julia Fritz, Ellen Kienzle, E Patricia Medici, Stefanie Lang, Waltraut Zimmermann, W Jürgen Streich, and Marcus Clauss. 2008. “Differences in Fecal Particle Size Between Free-ranging and Captive Individuals of Two Browser Species.” Zoo Biology 27 (1): 70–77.
APA
Hummel, J., Fritz, J., Kienzle, E., Medici, E. P., Lang, S., Zimmermann, W., Streich, W. J., et al. (2008). Differences in fecal particle size between free-ranging and captive individuals of two browser species. ZOO BIOLOGY, 27(1), 70–77.
Vancouver
1.
Hummel J, Fritz J, Kienzle E, Medici EP, Lang S, Zimmermann W, et al. Differences in fecal particle size between free-ranging and captive individuals of two browser species. ZOO BIOLOGY. 2008;27(1):70–7.
MLA
Hummel, Jürgen, Julia Fritz, Ellen Kienzle, et al. “Differences in Fecal Particle Size Between Free-ranging and Captive Individuals of Two Browser Species.” ZOO BIOLOGY 27.1 (2008): 70–77. Print.
@article{684395,
  abstract     = {Data from captive animals indicated that browsing (BR) ruminants have larger fecal particles-indicative of lesser chewing efficiency-than grazers (GR). To answer whether this reflects fundamental differences between the animal groups, or different reactions of basically similar organisms to diets fed in captivity, we compared mean fecal particle size (MPS) in a GR and a BR ruminant (aurox Bos primigenius taurus, giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis) and a GR and a BR hindgut fermenter (Przewalski's horse Equus ferus przewalskii, lowland tapir Tapirus terrestris), both from captivity and from the wild. As would be expected owing to a proportion of finely ground, pelleted feeds in captive diets, MPS was smaller in captive than free-ranging GR. In contrast, MPS was drastically higher in captive than in free-ranging BR of either digestion type. Thus, the difference in MPS between GR and BR was much more pronounced among captive than free-ranging animals. The results indicate that BR teeth have adapted to their natural diet so that in the wild, they achieve a particle size reduction similar to that of GR. However, although GR teeth seem equally adapted to food ingested in captivity, the BR teeth seem less well suited to efficiently chew captive diets. In the case of ruminants, less efficient particle size reduction could contribute to potential clinical problems like {\textacutedbl}rumen blockage{\textacutedbl} and bezoar formation. Comparisons of MPS between free-ranging and captive animals might offer indications for the physical suitability of zoo diets.},
  author       = {Hummel, J{\"u}rgen and Fritz, Julia and Kienzle, Ellen and Medici, E Patricia and Lang, Stefanie and Zimmermann, Waltraut and Streich, W J{\"u}rgen and Clauss, Marcus},
  issn         = {0733-3188},
  journal      = {ZOO BIOLOGY},
  keyword      = {grazer,ruminant,browser,teeth,captive diet,mastication,GIRAFFA-CAMELOPARDALIS,HERBIVORES,DIGESTIBILITY,REDUCTION,RUMINANTS,PASSAGE,MAMMALS,FORAGE,PLANT,RUMEN},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {70--77},
  title        = {Differences in fecal particle size between free-ranging and captive individuals of two browser species},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/zoo.20161},
  volume       = {27},
  year         = {2008},
}

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