Journal für Ornithologie

, Volume 137, Issue 3, pp 319–327

Alkoholaufnahme und Alkoholabbau beim Europäischen StarSturnus vulgaris

  • Roland Prinzinger
  • Ghassem Ahmed Hakimi

Alcohol resorption and alcohol degradation in the European StarlingSturnus vulgaris


All tested blood parameters are within the expected range for birds (Tab. 1). Starlings show a high rate of alcohol resorption. Experimentally ingested (per os) doses of 1, 2 and 3 g/kg ethanol (10 %-solution) were completely absorbed from the digestive tract within at least 30 min. Extraintestinal metabolic alcohol degradation is also very fast. Within 130 min even 3 g/kg ethanol were completely metabolised (blood alcohol values did not exceed 145 mg/l; Tab. 2, Fig. a). Alcoholdehydrogenase (ADH) activity is very high (ca. 14-fold of man) and shows a clear and fast adaptive plasticity in correlation to ingested alcohol concentration (Fig. b). There seems to be a clear pre-adaptation in ADH-activity in birds. We found low values in seed-eating birds and high values in fruiteaters. Under field conditions normal alcohol concentration as found in fermentated fruits and berries are so low, that — in connection with high ADH-activity — birds obviously have no problems to cope with alcohol.


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Copyright information

© Verlag der Deutschen Ornithologen-Gesellschaft 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roland Prinzinger
    • 1
  • Ghassem Ahmed Hakimi
    • 1
  1. 1.Zoologisches Institut, AK StoffwechselphysiologieJohann Wolfgang Goethe — Universität Frankfurt/MainFrankfurt/Main

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