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To adequately feed species in captivity it is necessary to know their nutritional habits and their natural availability of specific nutrients. Such essential nutrients are vitamin A, vitamin E and selected carotenoids as vitamin-A-precursors. Because their blood plasma concentration are valid biomarkers of nutritional status of dietary intake, we determined the concentrations of carotenoids, retinol and alpha-tocopherol by HPLC as well as the transport proteins for retinol, the retinol-binding protein (RBP) and transthyretin (TTR) immunologically in the plasma of six species of microchiroptera from free-ranging animals and compared it in one species (Carollia perspicillata) to a group held in captivity. Plasma concentrations of the investigated components were generally much lower compared to most other mammals. Within the bats, differences were observed for all components. As in other species retinol, RBP and TTR were present but no retinyl esters could be detected. Plasma of the insectivorous bat species Molossus molossus contained carotenoids. Within the group of carotenoids, beta-carotene was dominant and only traces of lutein were present. Phyllostomus hastatus revealed the highest alpha-tocopherol concentration. No differences in the plasma content of the investigated compounds were found between a group of Carollia perspicillata kept in captivity for 20 years and free-ranging individuals from a population in Central America. No sex related differences were obvious. In conclusion, nutritional biomarkers in bats were highly variable due to dietary and possible species-specific differences.