Wildlife Ranching Magazine


In the previous articles, we introduced the different digestive classes or categories that exist for African ungulates larger than a blue duiker. They discussed how the different classes differ with regard to what forage they select and what mechanisms they have to degrade and digest it. The second article in the series looked at two mega herbivores’ digestive strategies in more detail, namely the hippopotamus and the white rhinoceros.


T o recap, herbivores are animals that have a symbiotic relationship with a population of microbes resident in their rumens and/or caecum and colons.

The fibrous part of the ingesta gets converted to volatile fatty acids (energy) and other essential nutrients by fermentation and microbial action by the gut flora living in the foregut and/or hindgut. The most important flora are the cellulose digesting bacteria and protozoans.

The African savanna elephant and the black rhinoceros both obtain their energy by fermenting the fibrous component of their food in the hindgut of the gastrointestinal tract.

The African savanna elephant ( Loxodonta africana )

The elephant’s digestive strategy is similar to that of the domestic horse, which has a hindgut fermentation chamber that allows the animal to gain energy by microbial fermentation of fibrous material caudal to the gastric stomach.

Sie lesen eine Vorschau. Registrieren Sie sich, um mehr zu lesen.

Mehr von Wildlife Ranching Magazine

Wildlife Ranching Magazine3 min gelesen
Ayele, W.Y., Neil, l S.D., Zinsstag, J., Weiss, M.G. & Pavlik, I., 2004. ‘Bovine tuberculosis: an old disease but a new threat to Africa.’ International journal of tuberculosis and lung disease 8, 924-937 De Vos, V., Bengis, R.G., Kriek, N.P., Michel
Wildlife Ranching Magazine3 min gelesen
Private Game Innovation In Conservation
Our trusted expert contributors will develop curated content to not only inform our loyal readers and current customers of both wildlife opportunities and challenges, but to also provide an engaging voice for the private wildlife sector to stimulate
Wildlife Ranching Magazine4 min gelesen
The world reacted with dismay to the death of ‘Sudan’, the last male of the northern white rhino subspecies in the world, on 19 March. Yet there is hope that this may not spell extinction – certainly not if Dr Morné de la Rey has anything to do with