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Effect of Inbreeding on Several Fitness Traits and Disease Susceptibility in Captive Tiger (Panthera tigris) Population at Nandankanan Zoological Park, Odisha

Sidharth Prasad Mishra Chinmoy Mishra Gangadhar Nayak Niranjana Sahoo Sarat Kumar Sahoo
Vol 7(7), 241-250

The captive tiger population of Nandankanan Zoological Park, Odisha was taken into study to identify the deleterious effect of inbreeding on litter size, mortality, survivability, death due to different diseases and other fitness traits. The path of pedigree and inbreeding coefficient for 342 tigers were calculated from the available information of tiger national studbook. The correlation values between inbreeding coefficient and different fitness traits were estimated. The litter size of tiger was found to be positively and significantly (p < 0.05) correlated with inbreeding coefficient. However, age at death, survivability of cubs upto weaning and total numbers of cubs born throughout lifetime were negatively and significantly (p < 0.05) correlated with inbreeding coefficient. The death due to a disease conditions like stress, accidental injury, nephritis and senility were significantly (p < 0.05) associated with inbreeding of a tiger. It is recommended for zoos and other captive institutions to reduce inbreeding and inbreeding depression in their captive animal populations as much as possible by using species-specific breeding plans and using minimising kinship as captive breeding strategy.

Keywords : Captive Breeding Inbreeding Coefficient Tiger Wildlife Zoo Animal

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