There are no studies to date on the normal reproductive physiology of African white-bellied pangolins (Phataginus tricuspis). As a reclusive species, little is known about normal gestation, successful parturition, and potential complications during pregnancy. Ten female P. tricuspis were diagnosed as pregnant and monitored under professional care. Five developed complications during pregnancies or during parturition and are detailed in this case series. Dystocia occurred in two dams each, with malposition of a singleton fetus. Both dams were successfully treated with surgical intervention by caesarian section. Of the two individuals, one fetus was nonviable, but the other neonate survived and was reared by the dam to weaning. A third pregnant female died during pregnancy from septicemia resulting in death of the preterm fetus. The two additional dams of the five gave birth to full-term neonates. One fetus was stillborn with evidence of fetal distress, and the other died immediately after birth (perinatal death) with undetermined etiology. Based on this case series, complications associated with pregnancy occur in P. tricuspis, indicating the need for further study and close monitoring during impending parturition.
- African white-bellied pangolin
- Caesarian surgery
- Phataginus tricuspis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology