J. Kinne, P. Nagy and U. Wernery
Central Veterinary Research Laboratory, P.O.Box 597, Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Thirteen dromedary calves (6 to 12 month old) and three 2 year old females were kept at CVRL for a copper supplementation experiment. The animals received a daily dose of 50 mg/animal of copper over a period of 42 days. After this period, the dose was doubled to 100 mg copper/ animal per day for another 57 days. Blood samples were collected on different days and analysed for copper using the UNICAM 969 Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrometer (AAS) at 324.8 nm. Before starting supplementation, 4 out of 16 camels (25%) possessed normal basal serum copper concentration (above 60 μg/dl) and 12 animals (75%) showed copper deficiency (less than 60 μg/dl). Neither 50 nor 100 mg/day of additional copper supplementation had any significant effect in camels with normal serum levels. However, in copper deficient camels, the lower dose (50 mg/day) induced already a slight, temporary increase in serum copper concentration. However, the higher dose significantly elevated the serum copper concentration to the level of reference values.
Keywords : AAS, copper values, dromedary, exogenous supplementation