toggle visibility Search & Display Options

Select All    Deselect All
 |   | 
  Record Links
Author Marneweck, C.; Jürgens, A.; Shrader, A.M. url  doi
  Title Dung odours signal sex, age, territorial and oestrous state in white rhinos Type Journal Article
  Year 2017 Publication Proc Biol Sci Abbreviated Journal Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B  
  Volume 284 Issue 1846 Pages  
  Abstract Mammals commonly communicate olfactorily via urine. However, the extent to which they communicate via dung, another waste product, is unknown. Behavioural studies suggest that mammals can obtain information from dung odours but are unclear about the information transmitted. Moreover, an understanding of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released from dung is limited. To address this, we analysed the odours emitted from the dung of free-ranging white rhinos, and found that 2,3-dimethylundecane signalled an individual's sex, heptanal discriminated age class, nonane defined male territorial status and 2,6-dimethylundecane indicated female oestrous state. To validate these findings, we artificially reproduced key elements of the territorial and oestrous odour profiles (i.e. profiles likely to elicit behavioural responses from receivers). We then exposed free-ranging territorial males to these odours. In response, males elicited behaviours associated with the specific odours (e.g. territorial male (potential threat): reduced latency in assuming vigilance; oestrous female (potential mate): increased investigation). These results indicate that the VOCs identified from the dung of free-ranging individuals do transmit key information. Moreover, as white rhinos of all ages and sexes defecate communally, middens probably act as information centres. Furthermore, as many other mammals defecate communally, olfactory communication via dung odours is likely a widespread phenomenon.  
  Corporate Author Thesis  
  Publisher Place of Publication Editor  
  Language (up) Summary Language Original Title  
  Series Editor Series Title Abbreviated Series Title  
  Series Volume Series Issue Edition  
  ISSN ISBN Medium  
  Area Expedition Conference  
  Notes Approved no  
  Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 6147  
Permanent link to this record
Select All    Deselect All
 |   |