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Perinatal mortality in caribou from the Porcupine herd, Alaska

January 1, 1993

During the 1989 caribou (Rangifer tarandus) calving season on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska (USA), 61 calf carcasses were examined for cause of death and associated pathology. Dead calves were located by low-level aerial searches with two fixed-wing aircraft and a helicopter over high density calving areas between the Hulahula and Aichilik rivers. Primary diagnoses included emaciation (39%), malnutrition (8%), stillbirth (21%), trauma (16%), other primary causes (7%), and undetermined causes (8%). Twenty calves had contributory renal tubular degeneration. The findings indicate that factors contributing to nutritional deprivation in calves were the major cause of neonatal mortality; however, factors affecting stillbirth, abortion, or the urogenital system may have major effects on neonatal caribou and warrant further investigation.

Citation Information

Publication Year 1993
Title Perinatal mortality in caribou from the Porcupine herd, Alaska
Authors T.J. Roffe
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Wildlife Diseases
Index ID 1003763
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization National Wildlife Health Center