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Diet and the Condition and Growth of Elephants in Uganda
R. C. Malpas
Journal of Applied Ecology
Vol. 14, No. 2 (Aug., 1977), pp. 489-504
Published by: British Ecological Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2402561
Page Count: 16
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A study was made of the nutrition of elephants collected during a limited culling operation in the Kabalega Falls and Rwenzori National Parks, Uganda. The diet and the condition and growth of the elephant populations were compared independently of seasonal fluctuations in these factors by sampling in each area in both wet and dry seasons. Growth rates and condition in Rwenzori N.P. remained relatively stable throughout the year. In Kabalega Falis N.P., however, growth rates and condition fluctuated due to inadequate food resources in the dry season. No appreciable differences in condition and growth were detected between the elephant populations to the north and south of the Victoria Nile in Kabalega Falls N.P. Some of the condition estimates frequently used to assess food resources, such as kidney fat index, are unreliable because they reflect the amount of stored food reserves rather than the diet at the time of sampling.
Journal of Applied Ecology © 1977 British Ecological Society