Boldness-mediated habitat use tactics and reproductive success in a wild large herbivore

The balance between resource acquisition and risk avoidance should vary according to personality type, with potential knock-on effects for fitness. Although previous studies have suggested a link between boldness and fitness components, little evidence is available on the behavioural mechanisms mediating this relationship in the wild. Because habitat use is the outcome of the trade-off […]

Social influences on vigilance behaviour in giraffes, Giraffa camelopardalis

Vigilance in ungulates is considered to have a predominantly antipredator function, with the frequency and duration of scans per individual decreasing with increasing group size. Social influences on vigilance scans have been overlooked in studies on ungulates, although studies in primates and birds show that conspecific scans are important determinants of vigilance behaviour. We investigated […]

Using a Timed Feeder to Increase Activity and Exhibit Usage in Captive Giraffes (Giraffa camelopardalis)

The use of enrichment to simulate a natural environment has become increasingly important in the management of captive animals, especially in large exotic ungulates. Indicators of positive welfare in giraffes are behaviors that mimic those displayed in the wild. This study uses a randomly timed feeder in an exhibit for a herd of seven captive […]

Giraffa camelopardalis

species monograph

Sexual segregation by Masai giraffes at two spatial scales

In this paper alternative explanations for observed patterns of sexual segregation by giraffes are examined at two spatial scales: within-habitats and within-landscape. Habitats are defined as recognizable plant associations and the landscape as the collection of all available habitat types. The study was conducted in Mikumi National Park, Tanzania. At the within-landscape level, all sex […]

Urinary corticosteroid excretion patterns in the okapi (Okapia johnstoni)

Stress is known to alter a variety of biological processes, including behavior and reproduction. It is therefore important to understand the stress levels of animals in captivity, especially those for whom captive breeding is a priority, such as the okapi. Levels of stress hormones can be measured from samples collected noninvasively, such as urine or […]

Tragelaphus eurycerus

species monograph

Review of contraception in ungulate species

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20154.abs Most ungulate species are herd animals. In captivity, and increasingly so in the wild, space constraints limit natural behaviors associated with group dynamics, possibly resulting in inbreeding and/or overpopulation. This situation has necessitated research regarding contraception of various species of hoofstock. Differing management situations mandate different contraception protocols to achieve optimal results. Fertility […]

Interactions between red-billed oxpeckers and black rhinos in captivity

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20013.abs The relationship between oxpeckers and African ungulates has traditionally been considered mutualistic, because the birds were thought to reduce the tick loads of their hosts. However, recent field studies have questioned the validity of this assumption. Red-billed oxpeckers were found to have no impact on the number of ticks living on domestic cattle […]

Consistency of captive giraffe behavior under two different management regimes

Abstract Long-term animal behavior studies are sometimes conducted at a single site, leading to questions about whether effects are limited to animals in the same environment. Our ability to make general conclusions about behavior is improved when we can identify behaviors that are consistent across a range of environments. To extend Veasey and colleagues’ ([1996b] […]