Journal of Comparative Physiology B

, Volume 178, Issue 4, pp 487–493

Annual pattern of fecal corticoid excretion in captive Red-tailed parrots (Amazona brasiliensis)

  • Lucyenne G. Popp
  • Patrícia P. Serafini
  • Angela L. S. Reghelin
  • Katherinne Maria Spercoski
  • James J. Roper
  • Rosana N. Morais
Original Paper

Abstract

Annual patterns of fecal corticoid excretion were analyzed in the threatened Red-tailed parrot (Amazona brasiliensis) in captivity. Corticoid concentration over the 15 months of the study (mean ± standard error, 12.6 ± 0.32 ng g−1, n = 585) was lowest around May (the southern Fall), and greatest around September (late winter), just prior to their normal breeding period. Corticoid excretion follows a seasonal pattern best explained by reproductive cycles rather than climate, although climate may be involved in the timing of corticoid excretion. Fecal corticoids also show promise as a tool to measure stress levels. We demonstrate that fecal corticoid measurement is a simple, yet efficient method for monitoring adrenocortical activity in captive, and perhaps wild, parrots. Monitoring adrenocortical activity can inform researchers about imposed stress in captivity, whether pair-bonds are forming in captive birds, and of the timing of breeding both in captivity and in nature.

Keywords

Red-tailed-parrot Fecal corticoids Reproduction Seasonality Conservation 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lucyenne G. Popp
    • 1
  • Patrícia P. Serafini
    • 2
  • Angela L. S. Reghelin
    • 3
  • Katherinne Maria Spercoski
    • 3
  • James J. Roper
    • 4
  • Rosana N. Morais
    • 3
  1. 1.Curitiba Zoological ParkCuritibaBrazil
  2. 2.Society for Protection of Wildlife and Environmental Education (SPVS)CuritibaBrazil
  3. 3.Department of PhysiologyFederal University of Paraná, Sector of Biological SciencesCuritibaBrazil
  4. 4.Department of ZoologyFederal University of ParanáCuritibaBrazil

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