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Author (up) Bates, L.A.; Sayialel, K.N.; Njiraini, N.W.; Poole, J.H.; Moss, C.J.; Byrne, R.W.
Title African elephants have expectations about the locations of out-of-sight family members Type Journal Article
Year 2008 Publication Biology Letters Abbreviated Journal Biol Lett
Volume 4 Issue 1 Pages 34-36
Keywords elephants, olfaction, urine, individual recognition
Abstract Monitoring the location of conspecifics may be important to social mammals. Here, we use an expectancy-violation paradigm to test the ability of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) to keep track of their social companions from olfactory cues. We presented elephants with samples of earth mixed with urine from female conspecifics that were either kin or unrelated to them, and either unexpected or highly predictable at that location. From behavioural measurements of the elephants' reactions, we show that African elephants can recognize up to 17 females and possibly up to 30 family members from cues present in the urine-earth mix, and that they keep track of the location of these individuals in relation to themselves.
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Area Expedition Conference
Notes Approved yes
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 4332
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