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J Zoo Wildl Med. 2015 Mar;46(1):1-8.

Causes of mortality of captive Arabian gazelles (Gazella Arabica) at King Khalid Wildlife Research Centre, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, from 1988 to 2011.


We investigated the causes of mortality of the Arabian gazelle (Gazella arabica) based on the necropsy records of 1218 captive animals at King Khalid Wildlife Research Centre, Saudi Arabia, from 1988 to 2011. The largest number of deaths was attributed to trauma (391, 32.1%). Trauma was subdivided into the following three categories: collisions with fences (144, 11.8%); predator activity (91, 7.5%), and exhibit-mate aggression (156, 12.8%). Respiratory infection was another important cause of mortality, accounting for 186 (15.3%) deaths. Respiratory infection was more prevalent during the winter season (November to March). Other causes of death included gastrointestinal diseases, such as clostridiosis and salmonellosis (108, 8.9%). Maternal neglect (104, 8.5%), chronic renal fibrosis (34, 2.8%), and stress-related pathologies (35, 2.9%), in particular, capture myopathy, were also important causes of mortality. Here, the importance of these findings for improvement of the captive management of this vulnerable Arabian species is discussed, and for the first time, salmonellosis in Arabian gazelles is reported.

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