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Comparative study on the growth of juvenile Galapagos giant tortoises (Geochelone nigra) at the Charles Darwin Research Station (Galapagos Islands, Ecuador) and Zoo Zurich (Zurich, Switzerland)


Furrer, S C; Hatt, J M; Snell, H; Marquez, C; Honegger, R E; Rübel, A (2004). Comparative study on the growth of juvenile Galapagos giant tortoises (Geochelone nigra) at the Charles Darwin Research Station (Galapagos Islands, Ecuador) and Zoo Zurich (Zurich, Switzerland). Zoo Biology, 23(2):177-183.

Abstract

In this study, the growth rates of a group of Galapagos giant tortoises raised in their natural habitat at the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS; Galapagos Islands, Ecuador) and a group of captive-bred specimens (Zoo Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland) were compared for the first time. A great discrepancy in growth rates was observed after the first year. When the animals were 4 years old, the carapace
in the Zurich specimens was approximately twice as long as that in the CDRS tortoises, and the Zurich animals weighed approximately 10 times more than the CDRS animals. The zoo diet was modified by a reduction in nutrients and an increase in fiber to produce a more natural growth rate.

Abstract

In this study, the growth rates of a group of Galapagos giant tortoises raised in their natural habitat at the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS; Galapagos Islands, Ecuador) and a group of captive-bred specimens (Zoo Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland) were compared for the first time. A great discrepancy in growth rates was observed after the first year. When the animals were 4 years old, the carapace
in the Zurich specimens was approximately twice as long as that in the CDRS tortoises, and the Zurich animals weighed approximately 10 times more than the CDRS animals. The zoo diet was modified by a reduction in nutrients and an increase in fiber to produce a more natural growth rate.

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10 citations in Web of Science®
11 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinary Clinic > Department of Small Animals
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
630 Agriculture
Uncontrolled Keywords:captive breeding • conservation • diet • Testudinidae
Language:English
Date:2004
Deposited On:30 Mar 2009 14:08
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:03
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN:0733-3188
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1002/zoo.10130

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