Hematologic and serum chemistry reference intervals were determined from 33 wild caught Eurasian otters (Lutra lutra lutra) between November 1995 and May 1998 during a reintroduction project. Blood was obtained by jugular venipuncture after administration of ketamine and medetomidine. The mean, standard deviation, and range for 19 hematology parameters and 28 serum chemistry values are presented. There were no significant differences between sexes in most analytes. The results are in agreement with those reported previously for Eurasian otters with the exception of higher leukocyte and neutrophil counts, lower eosinophil and lymphocyte counts and higher activities for aspartate aminotransferase and creatine kinase. The Eurasian otters have lower erythrocyte counts but higher mean corpuscular volume and mean corpuscular hemoglobin values than the river otter (Lutra canadensis) in North America.
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Vol. 37 • No. 1