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Loris and potto anatomy: blood vessels

In lorises it is difficult to obtain blood samples with a syringe, possibly because of the existence of specialized bundles of blood vessels in the limbs, the retia mirabilia. At Ruhr-University, therefore, blood samples are obtained with the help of laboratory-bred, tropical blood-suckling bugs (Dipetalogaster maxima). Veins in the auricles of Loris may be visibly enlarged when ambient temperature is high. In connection with multiple small sweat glands found in the ear skin (Montagna, Ellis 1960), these veins most probably are important for regulation of body temperature. Marking of lorises by cutting incisions into the ear rim might therefore be disadvantageous for the animals.


Miyake, S., Ikeda, A., Ohta, S., Matsumoto, S., 1991: Three-dimensional analysis of the peculiar arterial patterns of the extremities in Lorisidae: the rete mirabile. Pp. 569-570 in: "Primatology Today", A. Ehara (ed.), Elsevier.
Montagna, W.; Ellis, R. A., 1960: The skin of primates II: the skin of the slender loris (Loris tardigradus). Am. J. Phys. Anthropol. 18: 19-43.
Suckling, J. A.; Suckling, E. E.; Walker, A., 1969: Suggested function of the vascular bundles in the limbs of Perodicticus potto. Nature 221: 379-380.
Data from Ruhr-University

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Loris and related species: health
Last amendment: 5 May 2000

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