This project, in collaboration with the University of Sydney, Melbourne Zoo and Perth Zoo will result in improved methods of elephant semen cryopreservation. A successful method will assist with gene transfer between institutions across the country and potentially internationally. This has great implications for genetic management of our collections as well as conservation of genetic diversity of wild elephants. So far, we have managed to keep sperm viable and motile during cold-storage (at 4oC) for up to 18 hours in milk-based medium. We have begun to understand the physiological requirements of elephant sperm and have adjusted the freezing and thawing rate and cryoprotectants accordingly. Funded by University of Sydney, Taronga, Zoos Victoria and Perth Zoo.
Taronga: Dr Rebecca Hobbs, Taronga Applied Eco-Logic Group
Collaborators: University of Sydney, Mr Cameron Negus (PhD student), Perth Zoo, Melbourne Zoo