Aarhus Universitets segl

Physical characteristics of forestomach contents from two nondomestic small ruminants, the blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra) and the Arabian sand gazelle (Gazella subgutturosa marica)

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review



  • Janine Hertaeg, University of Zurich, Schweiz
  • Cathrine Sauer, København Zoo
  • ,
  • Mads F. Bertelsen, København Zoo
  • ,
  • Sven Hammer, Naturschutz-Tierpark Görlitz, Qatar
  • Peter Lund
  • Martin Riis Weisbjerg
  • Marcus Clauss, University of Zürch, Schweiz
Rumen content stratification and the degree of dissociation of particle and fluid retention in the reticulorumen differ between ‘moose-type’ and ‘cattle-type’ ruminant species. These differences are not strictly linked to diet, except for a seeming limitation of ‘moose-type’ ruminants to a browsing niche. Nevertheless, these differences can be plausibly linked to other observed differences in ruminants, such as the intraruminal papillation pattern, or the size of the omasum. However, many of the corresponding measures are still only available for a restricted number of species. Here, we investigated the dry matter (i.e., the inverse of the moisture) concentration in forestomach contents of 10 blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra) and 7 Arabian sand gazelle (Gazella subgutturosa marica), and quantified the rumen papillation pattern. The blackbucks had distinct rumen contents stratification, with more moisture in ventral than in dorsal contents (difference 3.6% units, P < 0.001), whereas this difference was much less pronounced in the sand gazelles (0.6% units, P = 0.227). While reticulum contents were particularly moist in both species, omasum contents were particularly dry in sand gazelles, but did not differ in moisture from rumen contents in the blackbuck. This species is an outlier among ruminants due to its extremely small omasum. The intraruminal papillation pattern did not differ between blackbucks and sand gazelles and showed a surface enlargement factor (SEF) in the dorsal rumen of 27–28% of the SEF in the Atrium ruminis. Compared to data on digesta retention in the same species, the findings are in line with the overall concept of a high fluid throughput causing a distinct stratification of rumen contents and intraruminal papillation, and necessitating a large omasum for fluid re-absorption. However, the data also show that individual species may not correspond to all the assumptions of the concept, suggesting taxon-specific differences between species. Reasons for these differences cannot be linked to a dietary grass-browse spectrum, but may lie in evolutionary contingency.
TidsskriftComparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology
StatusUdgivet - jul. 2021

Se relationer på Aarhus Universitet Citationsformater

ID: 214834006