Preventive Medicine

Routine examinations are key to a comprehensive and proactive preventive medicine programme for adult and geriatric giant pandas. Such evaluations are made prior to animal transport, during quarantine and on a periodic basis. Each assessment is carried out under anaesthesia (using the principles and methods described above) the benefits gained far outweigh the minor risk of anaesthesia. Each holding institution should strive to develop a thorough, consistent database of information. The types...

Neonatal Pathology

Twinning is common in the giant panda, with one neonate usually rejected by the dam at birth. Hand-rearing the rejected cubs is challenging but has become more successful in recent years (see Chapter 13). The species is highly altricial. A newborn cub is generally 10 to 15 cm long and weighs 60 to 200 g. The per cent body weight ratio of cub to mother is only about one-tenth of one per cent, which is more typical of a marsupial than eutherians. Necropsy and histological assessments of giant...

The Management Of Giant Pandas In China And The Situation In

Giant pandas in China are managed under the authority of two federal agencies. One is the Ministry of Construction (MoC), which regulates giant panda activities in Chinese zoos under the umbrella of its Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens (CAZG). The CAZG (based in Beijing) has the enormous task of monitoring more than 80 zoos scattered throughout China. In 1996, there were 104 giant pandas distributed across 27 zoological parks throughout China, with the majority held in two facilities,...

Areas Of Investigation

Captive environments and abnormal behaviours Suboptimal captive environments for wildlife are associated with abnormal behaviours, stress and poor reproduction (Mason, 1991 Carlstead & Shepherdson, 1994 Shepherdson et al., 1998). Besides often being too small, more importantly zoo enclosures lack complexity and opportunities to perform natural behaviours. Unlike wild counterparts, the captive animal has little control over its environment. Attaining 'natural' goals of food and shelter are...

Friorities For The Future

This chapter has illustrated the value of ultrasonography as a practical tool for studying and managing giant pandas. The technology is still vastly under-utilised, and its many advantages (noninvasiveness, reproducible real-time images, cross-sectional images of tissues organs and the ability to measure morphometry) certainly argue for more widespread use. Applying ultrasound to the systematic examination of giant panda biology (especially in case-related investigations) will undoubtedly help...

Biomedical Survey Expertise And General Methods

The Biomedical Survey was successful because of three key elements effective communication multi-skilled participants and adequate funding. Constant translation was provided by two team members who were fluent in both languages, had lived in both cultures and were comfortable with biological terms and laboratory animal procedures -these people probably were the most valuable of all the participants. Diversity in skills was achieved by selecting team members representing a wide range of...

Implementing The Biomedical Survey

As will become apparent in Chapter 3, the 1998 Biomedical Survey was successful far beyond everyone's expectations, allowing it to continue into 1999 and 2000 and resulting in data from 61 giant pandas. This included extensive cooperation from the China Conservation and Research Centre for the Giant Panda (of the Wolong Nature Reserve under the auspices of SFA). By 1998 and, in part, because of its already existing relationship with the Zoological Society of San Diego, the centre at Wolong had...

Giant Panda

After arrival of the wild-caught, ten-year-old female (SB 378) at the Berlin Zoo in 1995, noninvasive urinary hormone analysis was initiated to characterise ovarian activity. Unchanging patterns of excreted oestrogen and progesterone metabolites for the next two years, as well as a lack of any sexual behaviour, suggested that she was acyclic. A transrectal ultrasound examination in February 1997 indicated that the genital tract was normal but that the ovaries were inactive. Since then, she has...

References

Chi-Chi, the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) at the London Zoo 1958-1972 a scientific study. Transactions of the Zoological Society of London, 33, 127-31. Bush, M., Montali, R. J., Phillips, L. G. et al. (1984). Anemia and renal failure in a giant panda. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 185, 1435-7. Bush, M., Montali, R. J., Phillips, L. G., Alvarado, T. P. and Ravich, W. J. (1985). Acute hemorrhagic enteritis in a male giant panda....

Introduction

Internal Anatomy Giant Panda

Nutrition involves a series of processes whereby an animal uses items in its external environment to support internal metabolism (Robbins, 1993). The nutrition and consequent nutritional status of an animal are basic to all aspects of health, including growth, reproduction and disease resistance. Thus, appropriate nutrition and feeding are essential to a comprehensive animal management and preventative medicine programme. The giant panda's obligate dependence upon bamboo as a primary energy and...

Info

Known dam was shown to have zero Off-Dam mismatches and, thus, was concordant with maternity. The known dam was then assigned and all resident males at the centre (regardless of age) were queried for possible paternity. Table 10.3 lists the mismatch results for the putative sire, for the next most likely male at the breeding centre and for the next most likely sire based on inspection of only those animals that were naturally mated or supplied semen for AI of the dam. In every case, the...

Results And Discussion

Early social experience and subsequent sexual behaviour In general, early social deprivation negatively influences nonhuman primate sexual behaviour, but more strongly in males than females (Mason et al., 1968 Reisen, 1971 Sackett, 1974). Male and female macaques (Macaca spp.) raised without mothers experience a variety of deficiencies in sexual behaviour, both in form (e.g. improperly oriented mounting) and sequence (e.g. male genital examination is not followed by male positioning or female...

Acknowledgements

We are grateful for the invaluable assistance and participation of the veterinary and animal care staff of the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. The endoscopy equipment was generously loaned by James F. Burns, Endoscopy Support Services, Inc., and Linda Scott and Christopher Chamness, Karl Storz Veterinary Endoscopy. The senior author is indebted to Darlene Riel (rvt), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, for transcontinental technical assistance and...

Stunted Development Syndrome

During the Survey, the teams were struck by the poor condition of almost 15 of the evaluated population (9 of 61 individuals). These giant pandas were small in stature (Fig. 3.5 Plate II), usually with a distended abdomen (from ascites), a coarse hair coat and worn and stained teeth (see Chapter 4). Some animals appeared chronically ill, with purulent mucous streaming from the nares, weepy eyes and other symptoms. Due to the comparatively small size of these animals (which, generally, was only...

Survey Results

Early in the process, the combined CBSG and China teams agreed that each giant panda should be classified into a category that would identify its probable future value to the ex situ population. Four categories were defined and used. An animal in good-to-excellent weight and health, displaying 'normal' behaviours and with a history of either successful reproduction or no reproductive deficiencies was categorised as a Prime Breeder. A young, prepubertal, vigorously healthy animal of normal...

Status In Nature And Threats

The giant panda is endemic to the mountains of Sichuan, Gansu and Shaanxi Provinces in China. The species is now found in only six mountain ranges at the eastern edge of the Tibetan plateau, distributed in as many as 30 to 40 distinctive populations (Fig. 1.2 Plate I). The Min Shan Mountains are the heart of panda numbers and activities, probably sustaining half the remaining wild individuals (Lumpkin & Seidensticker, 2002). Historically, the species was widely distributed and may have...

Refroductive Hormone Patterns

Average peri-oestrual endocrine profile Mean urinary oestrogen in a representative female (SB 112 1987 to 1991), with superimposed reproductive behavioural data during the peri-oestrus interval are depicted in Figure 8.1. Oestrogen concentrations increased slightly by Day 12 (7 2 ng mg 1 Cr), were eight-fold above baseline (19 3 ng mg 1 Cr) by Day 6, remained at that level for four days and then peaked on Day 0 (63 5 ng mg 1 Cr). Oestrogen excretion then declined, returning to baseline by Day...

Contributors

Conservation and Research for Endangered Species, Zoological Society of San Diego, 15600 San Pasqual Valley Road, Escondido, CA 92027, USA Department of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital Small Animal Clinic, 1 Shields Avenue, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA National Zoological Park, Smithsonian Institution, 3001 Connecticut Avenue N. W., Washington, DC 20008, USA Zoo Atlanta, 800 Cherokee Avenue S. E., Atlanta,...

Reference Book For Conservation Of Giant Panda

Tools of the trade to aid decision-making for species survival. Biological Conservation, 4, 553-72. Gould, S. J. (1982). The Panda's Thumb More Reflections in Natural History. New York, NY W. W. Norton & Co. Hu, J. and Qiu, X. (1990). History and progress of breeding and rearing giant pandas in captivity outside China. In Research and Progress in the Biology of the Giant Panda, ed. J. Hu, F. Wei, C. Yuan and Y. Wu. Chengdu, China Sichuan Publishing House of...

Corticosteroid

Urinary corticosteroids were measured using a single antibody RIA. Cortisol standards (7.8-1000 pg per tube ICN Biomedicals) and 0.010.002 ml of unprocessed panda urine (depending on appropriate binding) were combined in duplicate with cortisol antiserum (0.1 ml, 1 3000 ICN Biomedicals) and tritiated hydrocortisone (10 000 counts per minute per 0.1 ml New England Nuclear). Assays were incubated overnight (4 C), and bound and free ligands were separated by adding charcoal dextran (0.25 ml) for...

A

Gastric lumen, with flecks of white mucoid debris throughout, which prevented good viewing of the gastric mucosa in three individuals (SB 387, 522 and 530). In each of these cases, there was also an ingesta mass in the pyloric antrum that prevented observations and penetrating the pyloric with the endoscope. Each of these pandas had undergone minimal fasting and water removal before anaesthesia, which apparently contributed to this difficulty. No technical challenges occurred in the remaining...

Priorities For The Future

Because our studies are longitudinal and long-term, so far we have incomplete data for making definitive conclusions about the impact of early weaning and hand-rearing on long-lasting social and behavioural competency in the giant panda. It has been standard practice in Chinese breeding institutions to wean a giant panda cub permanently from its mother at least one year earlier than weaning occurs in the wild. Certainly, removing a cub at a younger age reduces the interbirth interval by...

Value Of Giant Pandas Ex Situ

If giant pandas should be maintained in captivity then the role of that population in conservation needs to be clearly articulated. Given that we can adhere to a goal whereby the ex situ population is not a detriment to the wild, but rather an advantage for 'enhancement' of giant pandas in nature (Zheng et al., 1997), then we recognise at least six ways in which the captive population of giant pandas is of conservation value. 1. Ambassadorial value. Few people have been fortunate enough to see...

And Physiology

The giant panda is an enigmatic carnivore, adapted to a highly specialised ecological niche (see Chapter 1). Although the species looks, moves and is genetically similar to bears (see Chapter 10), many of its pheno-typic traits are unlike those of other ursids. For a thorough understanding of the anatomy of giant pandas, the reader is referred to the classic publication of Davis (1964). Many of the species' distinctive features are related to its highly specialised reliance on bamboo. For...

Overview Of Ultrasound Health Assessments Of Male And Female Giant Pandas

Female Pelvic Ultrasound

Ultrasound examinations have been conducted since 1997 in the male and female giant panda at the Berlin Zoo, with and without anaesthesia. Anaesthesia induction was achieved with ketamine hydrochloride (10 mg kg-1 body weight, BW) administered via blowpipe dart injection. Anaesthesia was then maintained using isoflurane gas delivered via a face-mask (2.5-3.0 volume percentage with oxygen flow of 2-4 l per minute). Transabdominal assessments were carried out using a portable ultrasound unit...

The science of behavioural management creating biologically relevant living environments in captivity

Ronald r. swaisgood, guiquan zhang, xiaoping zhou, hemin zhang As for many highly specialised carnivores, breeding giant pandas in captivity has had sporadic gains and setbacks over its 40-year history (see Chapters 1 and 19). Although many husbandry issues have been addressed successfully, we are still learning about behaviour and its relevance to ex situ management. This chapter updates the state of captive breeding at the China Conservation and Research Centre for the Giant Panda in the...

Methods

The behavioural specialist on the Biomedical Survey team used a standardised form (Table 5.1) to collect relevant health and reproductive histories on every giant panda from senior keepers and or managers at all four institutions. These data were relevant for establishing a baseline on health and reproductive history for each individual as well as ascertaining early rearing information. To ensure consistency, one person (with a Chinese translator) collected all information. As a complementary...

Methods For Gastrointestinal Endoscopy

Eleven giant pandas (four males and seven females) were evaluated and ranged in age and weight from nine months to 19 years and 19 to 165 kg, respectively. Effective endoscopy of the gastrointestinal tract requires proper patient preparation. The presence of ingesta and faecal material can inhibit entry into the oesophagus, stomach, duodenum and colon, contribute to damaged tissue or instrumentation and prevent clear visualisation of luminal surfaces. For companion animals (dogs and cats), a...

Restraint And Anaesthesia

Operant conditioning can be used to train giant pandas to enter and remain quiet in a restraint device. The steel-constructed restraint cage used at the San Diego Zoo is rectangular (2 m long by 93 cm wide by 118 cm high) (Fig. 15.1) and on wheels for mobility. It has a solid bottom with bars on the sides and top. Along one side, some of the bars are removable to allow better access to the animal. The opposite wall is moveable allowing the available internal cage space to be decreased (i.e. the...

The Giant Panda Biomedical Survey how it began and the value of people working together across cultures and disciplines

David e. wildt, anju zhang, hemin zhang, zhong xie, donald This book deals mostly with new biological knowledge and the use of that knowledge to benefit the giant panda by enhancing health, reproduction and management. It is an important strategy for modern-day zoo scientists, conducting 'basic research' to learn as much as possible about previously unstudied phenomena in any species, especially those that have received little, if any, attention. In many ways, a scientist affiliated with a zoo...

The Diseases By Organ System

Giant Panda Eyelid

Digestive disorders represent by far the most prevalent and chronic form of disease in captive giant pandas (Bush et al, 1985 Goltenboth, 1985a,b Villares et al., 1985 Pan et al., 1991 Gual-Sil et al., 2000 F. Ollivet, unpublished data, pathology report, Paris Zoo). Gastrointestinal disease is the leading reported cause of death in captive pandas and also maybe so in free-ranging counterparts (Qiu & Mainka, 1993). Cubs often develop bouts of diarrhoea within the first month of life,...

Giant Pandas In The Western World

The giant panda was virtually unknown outside China until the 1800s when the declining Qing Dynasty opened China to western trade. The species was first described in the western world by the missionary naturalist and explorer Pere Armand David who described a giant panda specimen shot by Chinese hunters in Baoxin County, Sichuan Province in 1869 (Hu & Qiu, 1990). It was not until 1916 that the first westerner, Hugo Weigold, saw a live giant panda, and then it was another 14 years until the...

M t

Acrosomal morphology of the giant panda spermatozoon with a (a) normal apical ridge, (b) damaged apical ridge, (c) missing apical ridge or (d) loose acrosomal cap. (See also Plate VIII.) (i.e. macrocephaly, microcephaly or bicephaly) abnormal acrosome coiled flagellum bent midpiece with cytoplasmic droplet bent mid-piece without cytoplasmic droplet bent flagellum with cytoplasmic droplet bent flagellum without cytoplasmic droplet proximal cytoplas-mic droplet and distal cytoplasmic...

Medical Management Of The Geriatric Giant Panda

The giant panda has the capacity to have a relatively long lifespan in captivity, up to almost 30 years. Since reproduction generally ends after 20 years, we consider animals beyond this age to be 'geriatric'. Conditions that have been recognised in the aged panda include osteoarthritis, renal insufficiency, epistaxis, hypertension and dental disease. However, information available for each of these problems is often limited to studying a single individual. This is because few geriatric giant...

Significant medical issues and biological reference values for giant pandas from the Biomedical Survey

Donald l. janssen, mark s. edwards, meg sutherland-smith, jianqiu yu, desheng li, guiquan zhang, rongping wei, cheng lin zhang, r. eric miller, lyndsay g. phillips, daming hu, chunxiang tang The Giant Panda Biomedical Survey sought to establish a baseline of scientific information on giant pandas living in Chinese zoos and breeding centres as a first step towards establishing a self-sustaining captive population (Zheng et al., 1997 see also Chapter 2). To produce the most information that would...

The neonatal giant panda handrearing and medical management

Mark s. edwards, rongping wei, janet hawEs, meg sutherland-smith, chunxiang tang, desheng li, daming hu, guiquan zhang Among eutherians, ursids have a significant disparity between maternal weight and neonatal weight (Leitch et al, 1959). The giant panda also produces a smaller litter mass relative to maternal body mass than, for example, the American black bear (Oftedal & Gittleman, 1989 Ramsay & Dunbrack, 1996 Zhu et al., 2001). The giant panda neonate is particularly altricial (i.e....

Partnerships and capacity building for securing giant pandas ex situ and in situ how zoos are contributing to

David e. wildt, xiaoping lu, mabel lam, zhihe zhang, susie ems The new information in this book is largely the product of a series of successful cross-cultural and biological experiments - that is, people with diverse backgrounds and skills working together over time to create scholarly information, which is already being used to enhance giant panda management. Much of the progress is the result of personal relationships that developed during the course of the Survey, which, in turn, provided...

Common Medical Problems Of The Adult Giant Panda

There is a paucity of well-documented information about the common medical problems of giant pandas often what is known is presented in Chinese journals. From 1998 to 2000, the CBSG Biomedical Survey helped to improve substantially the body of reference knowledge on this species, as well as to survey for medical problems (see Chapter 4). The only other comprehensive reference on medical problems in the giant panda was produced by Qiu & Mainka (1993). Regardless, it is important to emphasise...

Info Hll

0.282 0.014 0.014 0.018 0.063 0.065c 3.14 lethal equivalents with 50 of these being lethal recessivesd Arbitrary 2 chance occurring each year 50 reduction in survival when occurs In unmanaged populations, 20 of males available in globally managed population, all males available with breeders and matings determined by mean kinship and relatedness of mates using SIMPOP Set at initial population sizes for each scenario a Unless noted, all parameters were derived from analysing data from the...

Evaluating stress and wellbeing in the giant panda a system for monitoring

Ronald r. swaisgood, megan a. owen, nancy m. czekala, nathalie mauroo, KathY hawk, jason c. l. tang Giant pandas are being maintained in captivity largely for the purpose of creating a reproductively viable population that will support conservation of the species in nature. Toward this end, researchers and managers have targeted many aspects of husbandry for improvement through scientific investigations. Among the many priorities is the ability to measure 'well-being' and possibly alleviate...

Ultrasoundguided Ai And Postbreeding Monitoring In The Female Giant Panda

Panda Fetus

At no time during the eight years that the giant pandas were together at the Berlin Zoo did natural breeding occur. Therefore, AI was developed, and from 1997 to 2003, six ultrasound-guided inseminations were conducted (see Table 17.1). Follicular development and ovulation were induced in the female with exogenous gonadotrophins for four of the six inseminations. Ovarian responses were relatively uniform, with one to three graafian follicles (> 6 mm in diameter) and more than ten smaller...

Sb

Urinary ovarian steroid excretion patterns aligned to the day of peak oestrogen excretion Day 0 are depicted for this female from 1998 to 2000 Fig. 8.6 . In all years, spontaneous oestrogen excretion increased above baseline by Day 10. In 1998 the 'control' year when no gonado-trophin treatment was administered , oestrogen concentrations during the 30-day interval preceding ovulation Days 30 to 0 ranged from 5 to 283 ng mg 1 Cr, with oestrogen returning to baseline by Day 5. In the Figure 8.4....

Assisted Reproduction

Artificial insemination with fresh semen is a valuable management tool for the captive breeding of giant pandas due to the high incidence of sexual incompatibility. It is common practice in China to combine natural breeding and AI. Generally, the one available 'breeding' male is used to copulate with the female after which she is immediately inseminated with semen from one or more males in an attempt to ensure pregnancy and promote genetic diversity. Paternity analysis has revealed that siring...

Giant Pandas Survivorship Curve

1988 1990 1992 1994 1996 1998 2000 2002 Year Figure 21.6. Cub survival to seven days per year. The declining annual age only p 0.32 . In contrast, a detailed analysis of early survival rates over time found substantial improvements in cub survival to seven days of age Fig. 21.6 . From 1990 through 1997, cub survival decreased sharply, averaging less than 50 by 1997. Since 1998, however, survival has ranged from 73 to 90 , an improvement attributable to several factors. For instance, in 1998 and...

The value and significance of vaginal cytology

Barbara s. durrant, mary ann olson, autumn anderson, fernando The giant panda is seasonally monoestrus, experiencing a single oestrus with spontaneous ovulation in the spring Schaller et al, 1985 . Although natural breeding produces the majority of cubs in captivity Xie amp Gipps, 2001 , the number of sexually competent breeding males is insufficient to create or maintain a genetically diverse population Hu, 1990 Xie amp Gipps, 2001 . Inclusion of males that are behaviourally incapable of...

Male reproductive biology in giant pandas in breeding programmes in China

Jogayle howard, zhihe zhang, desheng li, yan huang, rong hou, guanghan li, meijia zhang, zhiyong ye, jinguo zhang, shiqiang huang, rebecca e. spindler, hemin zhang, david e. wildt The goal of the giant panda ex situ breeding programme is to produce healthy, genetically diverse and reproductively sound offspring. However, reproduction in this species has been poor, in part, due to lack of male libido or aggressive behaviours towards conspecific females. Although giant panda breeding facilities...

Methods For Medical Evaluations

Panda Electro Ejaculation

Sixty-one animals were available for the Biomedical Survey. To allow age comparisons, we divided the population into three groups juveniles animals 1 to 18 months of age subadults 19 months to 4.5 years and adults gt 4.5 years . The rationale for the age division between the juvenile and subadult category was largely based on knowledge that young appear to be weaned in nature at about 1.5 years of age Zhu et al., 2001 . For the other division, our Biomedical Survey indicated that some males and...