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Some causes of mortalities in captive wild animals in Ibadan, Nigeria: a retrospective study

V Adetunji
A Adesope


A retrospective study was conducted to determine the number of mortalities in wild animal species kept at University of Ibadan zoologicalgarden, Agodi zoological garden, Ibadan and wild animals kept in private homes in Ibadan, South-West Nigeria between 2007 and 2012. Causes of death were determined during post mortem examination at MokolaVeterinary Hospital, lbadan and the University of lbadan Veterinary Teaching Hospital. A total ofrzz deathswere reported during the study period. Annual increases in mortalities were reported while majority of the deaths occurred during the rainy season. There was a significant positive correlation between monthly mortalities and average monthly rainfall for Ibadan (r=0.62, P<0.05). The highest mortalities were reported in avians (29.13%),followed by reptiles (27.56%), primates (16.53%), carnivores (13.39%), rodents and ruminants (each with 6.30%) and porcine (0.79%), Causes of mortalities were unknown in more than 17%of the cases. The known major causes include, injuries (23.62%), Gastroenteritis/helminthosis (14.96%),invasion by soldier ants (9.45%), transportation stress (8.66%), old age (7·87%), malnutrition (6.30%), paralysis (3.15%), drowning (2.36%) and others (6.32%). To achieve significant reduction in mortalities ofcaptive wild animals, managers of zoological gardens should adopt proper housing and feeding, routine vaccination, deworming, hygiene and sanitation and seek prompt veterinary attention wben animals are sick.

KEY WORDS: Wild animals, Mortalities, Injuries, zoos

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eISSN: 0331-3026