The white-footed tamarin (Saguinus leucopus) is an endangered primate that lives in a small forest corridor in northern Colombia, South America. Hematologic and serum biochemistry reference values are important tools in evaluating the health of the white-footed tamarin and serve to promote the survival of this species. The purpose of this study was to establish diagnostically important hematologic and serum biochemistry reference values for healthy white-footed tamarins and to determine whether there was significant variation with respect to age class (juveniles, adults), gender, and housing facility. Blood samples were collected for hematologic and serum biochemistry measurements from 29 wild-caught captive tamarins during February and April 2005, housed at three different facilities in central Colombia. Hematology and serum biochemistry values were similar in adults and juveniles. Female white-footed tamarins had absolute reticulocyte counts that were lower than those of male tamarins and males had lower serum chloride concentrations than female tamarins. Mean values for hemoglobin, mean cell hemoglobin, serum total protein, albumin, glucose, and alkaline phosphatase varied among the three housing facilities. Twenty-two of the 29 tamarins sampled were microfilaria-positive and had significantly higher mean serum alkaline phosphatase concentrations. Among the 29 tamarins sampled in this study, serum values for mean alkaline phosphatase and creatine kinase concentrations were higher than reported values for other mammals. The reference intervals determined in this study were comparable to normal ranges reported for other members of the family Callitrichidae.
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Vol. 39 • No. 4