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On intraspesific acoustic communication in the Russian Desman (Desmana moschata (Linnaeus,1758) (Insectivora: Talpidae: Desmanidae), with some notes on its social behaviour

Год: 1996

Авторы: Romanov P., Poduschka W., Deutsch W.

Издание: Contributions to Zoology. V. 66. No 1. P. 43–54.

The Russian Desman Desmana moschata (Linnaeus. 1758) is a highly endangered semiaquatic mammal, confined to disjunct areas. Between 1983 and 1992 several specimens were kept and investigated, firstly in the zoological garden of Moscow (49 9, 1 O’), and afterwards in the field station of the former Soviet-Russian Academy of Sciences at Cemogolovka (19,4 cr O’). Parallel to this, numerous extended field trips to the huge wetlands of the Oka Reserve allowed the verification of the results obtained in captivity. An unexpectedly rich repertoire of acofistic signals was recorded and transferred to sonagrams in Vienna/Austria. After tentative interpretation, the acoustic signals were correlated with simultaneous behaviour patterns. Not only the essential importance of intraspecific vocalizations was shown, but also a fascinating versatility «nd variability of the phonetical signals was discovered. Contrary to the notorious unsociableness of most insecti-vores, Desmana moschata is different. In this respect it is probably similar to another semiaquatic talpid, Condylura cris-tata Linnaeus, 1758. Throughout the ^year, both sexes of Desmana moschata may stay together, provided there is only one adult female present. In this set-up, even an added male newcomer is tolerated, provided he keeps out of the way for a couple of days. Generally, females seem to be absolutely dominant, which appears from their regular territorial dominance.

Тэги: Russian Desman, Desmana moschata, acoustic communication, sonagrams, Oka Reserve, female dominance, restricted social tolerance