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Feeding and excretion in the Afghan pika (Ochotona rufescens rufescens), a new laboratory animal

Matsuzawa, Toshiaki, Nakata, Masahito, Tsushima, Mitsuyoshi
Laboratory animals 1981 v.15 no.4 pp. 319-322
Ochotona, body weight, diet, excretion, feces, food consumption, guinea pigs, laboratory animals, osmolality, potassium, rats, sodium, urine
Food and water intake and the excretion of urine and faecal pellets during the day (0500-2100) and at night (2100-0500) were observed in Afghan pikas, rats and guineapigs fed appropriate diets. Urine composition was observed in these species after they had been fed the pika diet for 4 weeks. Rats ate more at night than did pikas or guineapigs. The pikas excreted numerous small, hard faeces and soft faeces, the latter being reingested. On the pika diet all species gained about 10% in bodyweight. Food consumption was similar to that shown by each species on its own diet. All animals fed the pika diet excreted alkaline urine. Chloride concentration in pika urine was similar to that of the rat and was significantly higher than that of the guineapig. The ratio of sodium to potassium in pika urine was 2·8 and 1·7 fold that of the rat and guineapig respectively. Osmolality of pika urine was slightly higher than that of the rat, and was 3·8 fold that of the guineapig.