Capuchin monkeys are well represented in EAZA zoos with approximately 916 individuals from six different species living in European institutions.3 One of these species, the yellow-breasted capuchin (Sapajus xanthosternos) is listed on the IUCN Red List as critically endangered. To improve the knowledge about capuchin monkey diseases and the medical consideration of this species in captivity, a retrospective study was conducted. An online survey (https://www.sondageonline.fr/) was sent to the 80 EAZA zoos hosting capuchin monkeys. 50% of the panel completed the questionnaire.
Skin disease was the main pathology reported, with 43.6% of collections affected, followed by dental problems which are also predominant issues in other captive primate populations.1 Based on the results of the survey, chronic right heart failure with cardiomegaly is a common diagnosed disease (18.9%) in aged capuchins, follow by chronic renal insufficiency (12.1%). The survey underlined three cases of diabetes mellitus and one case of hypothyroidism which, to the authors’ knowledge, have not previously been reported in capuchin monkeys. According to the survey results, neurological disease is uncommon in captive capuchins. However, as a member of the New World monkeys’ group,2 they are susceptible to toxoplasmosis, which primarily presents with neurological signs. This survey also collected data regarding vaccination, anesthetic protocols, faecal examinations and contraceptive protocols. This data can be useful to veterinarians caring for this species of capuchin.
The authors would like to thank the Larger New World Monkey TAG chair, Jan Vermeer and co-chair, Adrian Baumeyer for endorsing the questionnaire and all the EAZA institutions who took time to answer the online survey.
1. Calle PP, Joslin JO. New World and Old World monkeys. In: Miller E, Fowler M, eds. Fowler’s Zoo and Wild Animal Medicine. Volume 8. Saunders; 2015:301–334.
2. Epiphanio S, Sinhorini L, Catao-Dias JL. Pathology of toxoplasmosis in captive New World primates. J Comp Path. 2003;129:196–204.
3. ZIMS database results for capuchins. Species360 Zoological Information Management System. http://zims.species360.org/. May 2, 2018.