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Blood analysis potential in wild vertebrates studies

Blood analyses have great potential in studies of ecology, ecotoxicology and veterinary science in wild vertebrates. The major caveat for field researchers, however, is that the ‘rules' for human or domestic animal haematology do not always apply to wildlife. The present overview shows the strengths and limitations of blood analyses in wild vertebrates, and proposes a standardisation of pre-analytical procedures plus some suggestions for a more systematic examination of blood smears to increase the diagnostic value of blood data. By discussing the common problems that field researchers face with blood variables, authors also aim to highlight common ground enabling new researchers in the field to accurately collect blood samples and interpret and place their haematological findings into the overall picture of an ecological or eco-toxicological study. Besides showing the practicality and ecological relevance of simple blood variables, this study illustrates the suitability of blood samples for the application of cutting-edge analytical procedures for expanding the current repertoire of diagnostic tools in wildlife monitoring and ecosystem health assessment. informacion[at]ebd.csic.es Maceda-Veiga et al (2015) Inside the Redbox: Applications of haematology in wildlife monitoring and ecosystem health assessment Sci Total Environ doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.02.004


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