Fernando has been always fascinated by carnivores and specially felids. His work in a captive breeding program for clouded leopards in Thailand helped him to better understand the behavior of this species and made a call inside of him to focus in its cousin (and less known) species, the Sunda clouded leopard. Working alongside researchers from different parts of the world with endangered carnivores has been a real important influence for him to dedicate part of his life to the study of different veterinary aspects for the management of Sunda clouded leopards, in the wild and in captivity.
Fernando’s research work at DGFC was part of a collaborative effort between the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine (Complutense University of Madrid), Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU), Sabah Wildlife Department, and the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Putra Malaysia (UPM).
His research involved the veterinary management during the ecological study of carnivores in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary, with a very special focus in Sunda clouded leopards. Live-trapping Sunda clouded leopards represented a unique opportunity to examine and study field anesthesia protocols, alongside with hematology and serum biochemistry analysis in this species. This would help in the understanding of how capture events impact the physiology of this species and would contribute in the creation of blood reference values of this felid. Moreover, for hi research regarding potential disease threats to endangered felids in Borneo, the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary represented a patent example of fragmented landscape where endangered carnivores may share habitat with domestic species, increasing the risk of transmission of certain canine and feline pathogens. DGFC, located in an ideal and privileged location within the sanctuary, provided all the logistic support needed to carry out the wildlife trapping operations of the program.
The results obtained with his research in DGFC pretend to contribute towards the veterinary management of Sunda clouded leopards, including anesthesia protocols under field conditions, physiological response of trapped individuals, hematology and serum biochemistry of this species and the investigation of potential exposure to canine/feline pathogens.
PhD Candidate in Veterinary Medicine at the Complutense University of Madrid (Spain)
MSc in Clinical Ethology and Animal Welfare, Complutense University of Madrid (Spain)
Affiliation: Veterinary Advisor for the Bornean Clouded Leopard Programme (WildCRU)
Nájera, F., Brown J., Wildt, D., Virolle, L., Kongprom, U., Revuelta, R., Goodrowe, K. 2015. “Body mass dynamics in hand reared clouded leopard (Neofelis nebulosa) cubs: from birth until weaning”. Zoo Biology 34(3):239-43.
Fernando Nájera; Andrew J. Hearn; Joanna Ross; Senthivel Nathan; Luis Revuelta. 2014. “Alterations in selected serum biochemistry values of free-ranging Bornean leopard cats (Prionailurus bengalensis borneoensis) captured by box traps”. Veterinary Research Communications. (DOI) 10.1007/s11259-014-9605-2.
Nájera, F., Brown J., Kaufman, K., Asithammakul, W., Kongprom, U., Goodrowe, K., Schwartz, R., Wildt, D. 2014. “Swimmer Syndrome in a Clouded Leopard (Neofelis nebulosa) cub” Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 45(2): 386-388.
Nájera, F., Cediel-Algovia, R., Hearn, A, Ross, J., Dench, R, Alcazar P., Nathan, S., Revuelta L. 2013. “Chemical Immobilization of Bornean Leopard Cats with tiletamine-zolacepam Under Field Conditions in Borneo”. Thai J Vet Med 43(3): 445-448.
Fernando Nájera, Gilmoore Bolongon, Nicola K. Abram, Benoit Goossens, Laurentius N. Ambu, Luis Revuelta, David W. Macdonald and Andrew J. Hearn. 2013. “Observation of a road-killed Sunda clouded leopard in Malaysian Borneo”. Cat News 58: 42-43.
Nájera, F. and Suarez, A. 2012. “Horner’s Syndrome associated with Escherichia coli Infection in a Raccoon (Procyon lotor) – A Case Report” Thai J Vet Med 42(3): 367-372.
Nájera, F., Kaufman, K.J., and Revuelta, L. 2011. “Veterinary Aspects of Hand-rearing two orphan African lion (Panthera leo) cubs: a revision of procedures”. Journal of Wildlife Rehabilitation. 31(1)7-14.
Nájera, F., Revuelta, L., Greenacre, G., and Kaufman, K.J. 2011.” First hours of treatment in a nine banded armadillo (Dasypus noveminctus) neonate rescued from illegal trade in Ecuador”. Journal of Wildlife Rehabilitation. 31 (1) 21-24.
Aceituno Arnold, N., Rodriguez Ponga, V., Nájera Muñoz, F., Revuelta Rueda, L. “Breeding, Husbandry and Management of Iberian Wolf (Canis lupus signatus) Cubs” Revista Complutense de Ciencias Veterinarias. (Complutense Journal of Veterinary Sciences) 2008. Vol. 2 N° 2.
Nájera F., Hearn A.J., Ramírez Saldivar D.A., Evans M.N., Guerrero-Sánchez S., Brandao J., Nathan S., De Gaspar I., Revuelta L., and Goossens B. Chemical Immobilization Of Free-Ranging And Captive Sunda Clouded Leopards (Neofelis Diardi) With Two Combinations: Medetomidine-Ketamine And Tiletamine-Zolazepam. Proceedings of the 2015 Annual Conference of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians, Portland OR
Stone S., Breck S., Timberlake J., Haswell P., Schoen L., Bean B., Thornhill D., Nájera F.,” Resolving Wolf And Sheep Conflicts With Nonlethal Methods”. 27th International Congress of Conservation Biology. Submitted
Nájera, F., Tongthainan, D., Asithammakul, W., Kongprom, U., Goodrowe, K., Schwartz, R., Brown, J., Lang, K., Goldfarb, A., Passaro, R., Wildt, D. “An Overview of Breeding Clouded Leopards (Neofelis nebulosa) in The Thailand Clouded Leopard Consortium (Khao Kheow Open Zoo)”. Proceedings of the 19th SEAZA Annual Conference 2011. Pattaya, Thailand.
Nájera, F., Greenacre, G., Weijand, f., Kaufman, K., Flores, J., Jaramillo, F., Sarabia, J. “Working against illegal wildlife trade in the Pastaza Region Ecuadorian Amazon”. Proceedings of the 43nd Annual Conference of American Association of Zoo Veterinarians 2011. MO, USA.
Nájera, F. “Veterinary Aspects in Ex-Situ/In-Situ Felid Programs”. Proceedings of the 5th Zoological Parks Organization Conservation and Research Meeting 2011. Bangkok, Thailand.
Nájera, F., Hearn, A., Ross J., Nofs S. “Veterinary Involvement in The Bornean Wild Cats and Clouded Leopard Project”. Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Conference of American Association of Zoo Veterinarians/ American Assoc of Wildlife Veterinarians. 2010. TX, USA.