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Runelid, Samuel, 2017. Hierarki och hägnutnyttjande hos Asiatisk vildhund (Cuon alpinus) på Nordens Ark. First cycle, G2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Animal Environment and Health

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Abstract

The Asiatic wild dog (Cuon alpinus), or Dhole, is a medium sized canid, and currently the most endangered carnivore in all of Asia. The species is divided into a northern and a southern group, with eleven subspecies, and populations of the species exist in scattered and broken up habitats across several Southeast Asian countries. They are found in a variety of different habitat forms, from damp jungles to arid mountain chains. Asiatic wild dogs are social animals, who live in packs with a fixed hierarchy. Packs contain a single breeding pair which is allowed to have pups, and holds a dominant role over the other members. The pack also hunts in group, and prey mainly consists of larger ungulates. The greatest threats to the species are due to human activities. As human societies infringe on their home ranges, spreading of cultivated landscapes and herding livestock puts pressure on the environments and prey of the Asiatic wild dog. The species is also considered a pest among the cultures in these regions, and is therefore poached. Part of the global preservation plan is the keeping and breeding of the species in zoos and wild parks.
As of winter 2016 the Swedish zoo Nordens Ark is holding Asiatic wild dogs, with the prospect of breeding in the future. They are currently holding two males from the same litter, but will take in females when available. There is an interest from Nordens Ark to see if a hierarchy can be determined among the individuals, so that they later can compare if a current dominant male will become the sire once females have been introduced, or if there will be a shift in hierarchy. Therefore this study on hierarchy was conducted with that in mind. Consecutively Nordens Ark wished to see how the Asiatic wild dogs utilise their enclosure, since they have not held this species before, and the enclosure is an important part of the animal welfare. Therefore the enclosure study aimed to see where they were, and how they used the enclosure.
The ethological hierarchy study yielded few results, so a definitive answer cannot be given. However despite them being few, there was a trend among the results of one individual conducting all registered dominant behaviours, and the other performed most of the submissive ones. This in conjunction with the fact that the first individual took more initiatives in moving, leads to the conclusion that he is probably the dominant one in the group. The ethological enclosure study showed a definitive preference for the cliff area in the foremost pen, with the majority of the time spent there, but they resided in all parts. Several behaviours were performed in most parts of the enclosure, like walking or laying down, but certain behaviours were only observed in specific parts, like drinking or defecating. During the studies two forms of stereotypes were noticed between the individuals, pacing and head-rolling. The first individual performed the pacing, and mostly the second performed the head-rolling.

Main title:Hierarki och hägnutnyttjande hos Asiatisk vildhund (Cuon alpinus) på Nordens Ark
Authors:Runelid, Samuel
Supervisor:Anderson, Claes and Loberg, Jenny
Examiner:Wichman, Anette
Series:Studentarbete / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för husdjurens miljö och hälsa
Volume/Sequential designation:712
Year of Publication:2017
Level and depth descriptor:First cycle, G2E
Student's programme affiliation:VK002 Ethology and Animal Welfare - Bachelor's Programme 180 HEC
Department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Environment and Health
Keywords:Asiatisk vildhund, Coun alpinus, Nordens Ark, hierarki, hägnutnyttjande, beteende
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-6811
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-6811
Subjects:Animal ecology
Language:Swedish
Deposited On:11 Sep 2017 06:39
Metadata Last Modified:11 Sep 2017 06:39

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