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    Comparative analysis of gut microbial composition and functions of forest musk deer in different breeding centres
    Feng JIANG, Pengfei SONG, Jingjie ZHANG, Hongmei GAO, Haijing WANG, Zhenyuan CAI, Daoxin LIU, Tongzuo ZHANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 129-140.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150701
    Abstract908)   HTML74)    PDF (4706KB)(872)       Save

    Intestinal diseases are common in the breeding of forest musk deer (Moschus berezovskii, FMD). Gut microbiota has evolved with the host and formed a complex microecosystem with the gastrointestinal tract of animals. To compare the effects of different breeding environments on gut microbial composition and functions of captive FMD, a total of 215 fresh feces samples were collected from 5 different breeding centres in China, and a 16S rRNA gene high-throughput sequencing was performed. The differences in gut microbial composition, diversity, and functions of FMD from different breeding centres were analyzed. The results showed that Firmicutes and Bacteroides were the absolute dominant bacteria phyla in the gut microbiota of FMD fed without compound probiotics from Qilian County, while Firmicutes and Proteobacteria were the absolute dominant bacteria in the gut microbiota of FMD fed with compound probiotics from Liangdang County and Feng County. The composition, dominant bacteria phyla, dominant bacteria genera, potential pathogenic bacteria, metabolism-related, and disease-related functions of gut microbiota in FMD from different breeding centres were significantly different. The α diversity and disease-related function enrichment of gut microbiota in FMD from Qilian were significantly lower than those from other breeding centres, and enterotype 2 was dominant, with Firmicutes, UCG-005, and Bacteroides as the marker bacteria. The relative abundance of potential pathogenic bacteria of gut microbiota in FMD from Liangdang and Feng Counties was low. We speculated that the difference in food composition might be the main factor leading to the difference in the gut microbiota of FMD from different breeding centres, and the use of compound probiotics might be an important factor leading to the decrease of α diversity and potential pathogenic bacteria. The results of this study can provide a scientific basis for the artificial breeding management of FMD, and also have certain significance for the assessment of the artificial breeding environment and the plan of reintroduction in the future.

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    Diet conversions of pre-released giant panda ( Ailuropoda melanoleuca) cubs
    Shiqiang ZHOU, Shengshan HE, Yuanyuan QU, Yong LUO, Daifu WU, Yan HUANG, Desheng LI, Hemin ZHANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 652-664.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150655
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    This paper takes 15 giant panda cubs undergoing pre-release training, including female animals with cubs, monitored from 2010 to 2020 as the research object. Based on the behavior data observed and interpreted by infrared video monitoring system and audio collar, and the fecal sample data collected by GPS collar tracking and positioning, this paper analyzes the behavior development process and food conversion characteristics of giant pandas undergoing pre-release training. The results show that with the growth and development of giant pandas undergoing pre-release training, the behaviors related to foraging and vigilance are fully developed, and have a strong temporal correlation,including feeding, crawling, walking, playing with objects, climbing trees, biting and playing with bamboo, drinking water and eating bamboo. Generally, at the age of 8 ? 10 months, giant panda cubs begin to eat bamboo organs, and the process of developmental dietary transition is clearly divided into three stages: ready?to?eat milk period (1 ? 7 months old), breast milk bamboo conversion period (8 ? 28 months old) and bamboo eating period (29 ? 39 months old). The conversion period can be divided into critical period (8 ? 18 months old) and transition period (19 ? 28 months old). According to the statistical test, there are significant differences between different feeding stages, and the giant panda in the transition period can leave the mother animal and live independently in the study area. The proportions of food components in the transition period are not significantly different from that in the bamboo feeding stage. The seasonal dietary shift pattern of the wild training giant panda is similar to the mother animal with offspring and the wild giant panda in that is the main food is bamboo shoots in spring, young bamboo stems and leaves in summer and autumn, and bamboo leaves and stems in winter. The results of this study not only verify the scientific basis and feasibility of the pre-release training method of female animals with cubs, but also provide a reference for the pre-release training and reintroduction of captive giant pandas in the future.

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    Temporal and spatial niche differentiation of sympatric black muntjac and Reeves’ muntjac
    Juan HU, Peigen XIE, Tingting LI, Rui GUO, Lijuan XU, Xiao SONG, Aichun XU
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 641-651.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150638
    Abstract752)   HTML23)    PDF (4862KB)(948)       Save

    Niche differentiation is an important ecological theory in explaining the coexistence of species. Schonenr believes that the spatial dimension has the highest influence on the formation of niche differences, followed by the nutritional dimension, and the time dimension is the last to be activated. To verify this hypothesis, we used the kilometer grid method to place 52 infrared cameras in the Longtangshan area of the Qingliangfeng National Nature Reserve in Zhejiang from December 2018 to November 2019. We monitored the populations of sympatric black muntjac and Reeves’ muntjac that have similar feeding habits. The average capture rate was calculated to analyze the differences in the species’ selection of vegetation type, altitude, slope position, and distance from water sources in different seasons. The nuclear density estimation method was used to analyze the daily activity rhythm and the degree of overlap in the activities of the two species. The results indicate that black muntjac and Reeves’ muntjac have different choices in spatial niche: black muntjac prefers mixed broadleaf-conifer forest, primarily inhabiting areas with high altitude between 1 301 - 1 500 m and avoiding areas with low altitudes and valleys. Activities of the black muntjac are frequent in areas closer to water sources. The Reeves’ muntjac prefers deciduous broadleaved forests, mainly inhabits areas with an elevation of 901 - 1 100 m, prefers mid-slope positions, avoids valleys, and has no obvious tendency towards choosing water sources. The black muntjac and the Reeves’ muntjac are both diurnal animals with morning and twilight activities, and the overlap of their daily activity rhythms throughout the year is relatively high (Δ4 = 0.86), and only lower in winter (Δ1 = 0.65). The above results support the hypothesis of Schonenr. First, spatial dimension has a greater impact on species niche differentiation than the temporal dimension. The black muntjac and Reeves’ muntjac in the Longtang Mountain area mainly choose different habitats to avoid overlapping territories and reduce the competition between both species. Secondly, there are seasonal differences in this model. In winter, due to the reduction of available resources, competition intensifies. Both species adjust their rhythm of daily activities to increase the degree of temporal niche differentiation in order to achieve coexistence in the same region.

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    An overview of population survey methods of non-human primates
    Xier CHEN, Lijie YIN, Dagong QIN, Jinxian YAO, Xiaoyu LI, Wenshi PAN
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 716-727.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150656
    Abstract742)   HTML28)    PDF (903KB)(909)       Save

    Monitoring and estimating wildlife population size is essential to conservation. Affected by global climate change and human activities, wildlife populations could be relatively unstable. Primates are a group of highly evolved taxa in the animal kingdom and are among the most social of animals. As many as 701 species or subspecies of primates are recognized globally, forming a rich diversity. They could be found in various types of habitats, including rain forests, swamp forests, mangroves, secondary forests, deciduous forests, monsoon forests and montane forests, as well as in grasslands (savannah and steppe) including forest outliers, gallery forests, wooded steppes, thorn forests, Mediterranean scrubs and montane meadows, and even in deserts, dry uplands or permanent snow. Most primate species are endangered from different causes, and therefore effective long-term monitoring is of significant value to primate conservation. Species and habitat diversity have contributed to the numerous methods of censusing primate populations. This article offers a summary of widely-used non-human primate population censusing methods, including the classifications, the fundamentals, the various scenarios for application, and their limitations. The methods are analyzed with case studies and research. Furthermore, we introduce the latest applications of drones, thermal imaging and computer deep learning in primate population surveys, hoping to offer some insights into future non-human primate censusing and population monitoring.

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    Climate change results in imbalance population growth and change in suitable habitat for red deer in the Qinghai‒Tibet Plateau: a case study in the Leiwuqi National Nature Reserve
    Xiulin YE, Keji GUO, Xinrui LI, Qing WU, Mengfei ZHANG, Ming LI, Xumao ZHAO
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 149-156.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150706
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    The Qinghai?Tibet Plateau is the highest geographical unit on Earth and has warmed at about two times the rate of global warming over the past 50 years, which has had a great impact on high-altitude species. We used field survey information collected in the Leiwuqi National Nature Reserve (LNNR) combined with species distribution models (SDMs) and population growth model to find that (1) the population size of Cervus elaphus increased from 890 to 1 400 between 2013 and 2021, and may reach 1 735 in 2050 (1 760 in 2070), and (2) the present suitable habitat of C. elaphus will decrease by 43.4% and 5.1% in 2050s and 2070s, respectively. In addition, the suitable habitats of C. elaphus have 19%, 60% and 37% overlap with that of domestic yaks in the present, 2050s, and 2070s, which decreases the suitable habitat for C. elaphus due to food competition. The estimated increase in population size, decrease in suitable habitats, and competition with yaks will increase the threat to C. elaphus in 2050s. To protect C. elaphus, human activities, particularly for grazing yaks in and around the LNNR, should be reduced to 1 000 ? 1 500. This study integrated SDMs, population growth model, and interspecific relationships to evaluate the impact of climate change on species to the population level, which has significance for other species conservation.

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    Preliminary survey of mammals and birds diversity by using camera traps in the Guangxi Encheng National Nature Reserve
    Bo XIE, Xiuping NONG, Guoli HUANG, Rong HUANG, Wei YAO, Jianzhong LIN, Qihai ZHOU
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 215-223.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150653
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    In order to document the wildlife resources in Guangxi Encheng National Nature Reserve. We set up 58 infrared camera traps in this natural reserve to monitor mammals and forest birds from December 2019 to January 2021. The surveys produced a total of 17 332 camera-days of data, and 6 680 independent wildlife photographs were collected. We identified 20 mammal species belonging to 5 orders and 13 families, as well as 61 bird species belonging to 9 orders and 20 families. Among the detected species, one species is listed as first-class National Protected Wildlife: Fran?ois’s Langur (Trachypithecus francoisi), and 26 species (6 mammal species and 20 bird species) are listed as second-class National Protected Wildlife. There are 2 species are classified as Endangered (EN), 6 as Vulnerable (VU) and 19 as Near Threatened (NT) according to the Red List of China’s Vertebrates. Based on the relative abundance index, the mammal with the highest relative abundance index was Leopoldamys edwardsi, the bird was Lophura nycthemera. Camera traps technique is an effective method for wildlife survey. Our results provided the primary records on the species composition and relative abundance of mammals and birds in the Guangxi Encheng National Nature Reserve. These will provide the basic information for future investigation of wildlife and management in the reserve.

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    Characteristics of food plants consumed by Hainan gibbon ( Nomascus hainanus) in fragmented habitat
    Huaiqing DENG, Baoping REN, Yun LIU, Jiang ZHOU
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 615-623.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150658
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    Quantity, availability, and diameter structure of feeding plant species of Hainan gibbons (Nomascus hainanus) were investigated in Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park of Bawangling Bureau from January 2013 to July 2014. Sixty-four food species with 1 484 plant samples of tree diameter at breast height ≥ 5 cm were recorded in the habitat of Group C of Hainan gibbon. The gibbons highly preferred large and tall trees to feed on. Fifteen tagged plant species have a fructiferous rate of more than 50.0%. The maximum is 76.7% by Monoon laui and the minimum is 9.6% by Heptapleurum heptaphyllum. Among 18 main food plants, 15 species showed a growing structure and only Pouteria annamensis showed the recession structure. Food plants consisted of young individuals and only 37 species (71.2%) can fruit every year for the gibbons. Fruit rate of feeding tree species was not affected by altitude and was significantly associated with tree height and diameter at breast height. Hainan gibbons ate tender leaves (15.6%) when fruits were scarce in the dry season. High fluctuations in fruit availability yearly might limit the population growth of Hainan gibbons in a long run.

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    Distinct patterns of microsatellite and functional analysis of forest musk deer and its closely related species
    Qi ZHAO, Qi ZHANG, Haoling LI, Yue LAN, Xingan YAN, Guijun ZHAO, Wenhua QI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 705-715.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150645
    Abstract681)   HTML11)    PDF (1019KB)(812)       Save

    Muscidae and Cervidae belong to artiodactyl ruminants and have important economic value. There is still a lack of relevant studies on using simple sequence repeats (SSRs) to reveal the phylogenetic relationship among species at the genomic level and to explore the gene functions of SSRs and their enriched signaling pathways. With the completion of the genome sequence of the forest musk deer (Moschus berezovskii), Siberian musk deer (Moschus moschiferus), the red deer (Cervus elaphus), the Reeves’ muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi), and the red muntjac (Muntiacus vaginalis), we extracted the coding sequences (CDS) of these species by bioinformatics method and analyzed the distribution patterns of coding SSR and their biological functions. The containing-SSR genes were enriched in the signal pathways and their association with disease were explored. The results prove that the proportion of their coding SSRs were 6.96% (1 696), 7.18% (2 359), 7.29% (3 005), 7.36% (1 916), and 7.48% (1 924), respectively. In addition, the distribution pattern of coding SSRs of the five species was similar, triplet repeats SSR (Tri- and Hexa-SSRs) of the five species were the most similar, which were 96.85%, 94.87%, 65.44%, 64.23%, and 88.04%, respectively. The GO functional enrichment showed that the SSR sequences in the CDS of the five species had many same enriched functions in three aspects: molecular function, cellular component, and biological process, including DNA binding, chromatin, growth, and development. The result of the KEGG pathway enrichment analysis showed that there are 7 KEGG pathways that were significantly co?enriched in forest musk deer and other species.These include protein families: genetic information processing, transcription factors, chromosome and associated proteins, spliceosome, transcription machinery, Notch signaling pathway, and maturity?onset diabetes of the young. By analyzing the SSR-containing key immune genes and their associated KEGG pathways in the CDS region of forset musk deer, 10 SSR-containing key immune genes corresponding to the KEGG pathway were found to be closely associated with the disease.

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    Effects of food resources seasonality on home range utilization of wild Tibetan macaque ( Macaca thibetana)
    Yadong LI, Bowen LI, Xi WANG, Penghui LI, Jinhua LI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 624-633.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150647
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    Distribution and availability of food sources dramatically influence home range dynamics. Studies on home range utilization are critical for revealing the ecological adaptations and behavioral complexity in wild animals. From September 2020 to August 2021, we studied one group of Tibetan macaques (Macaca thibetana, Tianhu group, TH) in Huangshan, Anhui province, China. We directly observed and recorded spatial positions of the study group and monitored habitat conditions, vegetation distribution and food availability. 4 307 GPS positions were obtained and the kernel density estimation of GPS sites revealed that the Tibetan macaque’s home range area decreased from spring to winter, with areas of 7.16 km2, 5.09 km2, 3.85 km2, and 0.35 km2, respectively. The average daily ranging distance (d = 1735.67 m ± 288.35 m, n = 12) of the monkeys was positively correlated with food availability, with the longest average daily ranging distance in July and the shortest one in January. Monkeys preferred to stay in the mixed coniferous and mixed evergreen deciduous broadleaf forests. The monkeys used bamboo forests more in spring, mixed coniferous and broad forests in summer and winter, and mixed evergreen deciduous broadleaf forests in autumn. Tibetan macaques use their home ranges to adapt to low altitudes based on food resource distribution, food availability, and other factors.

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    A review of wildlife conservation and management strategies of Sanjiangyuan National Park
    Tongzuo ZHANG, Feng JIANG, Jingjie ZHANG, Zhenyuan CAI, Hongmei GAO, Haifeng GU, Pengfei SONG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 193-205.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150698
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    Sanjiangyuan National Park (SNP) is one of the first and largest national parks in China and the first national park on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. It has landmark significance for the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and even for China's accelerated construction of national parks as a natural areas protection system. The diversity of wildlife in SNP is high and the proportion of endangered species is large, among which the proportion of mammals and birds under threat is 32.26% and 19.90%, respectively. SNP also harbors abundant national key protected species and rare species endemic to the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, including 46.77% of mammals endemic to China or the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and 7.65% of birds endemic to China. Its rich biodiversity has conservation value of national and even global significance. We briefly reviewed the progress and achievements of global wildlife conservation research, analyzed the causes of wildlife endangerment in SNP, and proposed several wildlife conservation and management strategies, such as strengthening the monitoring of wildlife dynamics in SNP, innovating habitat protection techniques, establishing wildlife migration corridors and refuges, conducting research on the balanced management of grass and livestock, disease control, human-animal conflict, and establishing wildlife gene resource bank. There strategies will provide useful guarantees for the achievement of strict protection of ecological environment, harmonious coexistence between human and nature, as well as regional sustainable development strategic needs in SNP.

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    Two new records of Chodsigoa hypsibia and Sorex bedfordiae from Ningxia in China
    Li ZHOU, Rui LIAO, Quanfen HOU, Shunde CHEN, Shaoying LIU
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 224-228.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150709
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    In September 2011, six shrew specimens were collected with traps from Mt. Liupanshan, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region (35°36′76″N, 106°32′79″E, 2 000 m asl). Pelage, skull, and teeth morphologies of one specimen are similar to Chodsigoa hypsibia and the others are similar to Sorex bedfordiae. Molecular analyses supported the two species C. hypsibia and S. bedfordiae to be monophyletic, and the K2P genetic distance of Cyt b gene is 0.4% (C. hypsibia) and 6.7% - 7.4% (S.bedfordiae). Thus, these specimens were identified as C. hypsibia and S. bedfordiae based on morphological and phylogenetic analyses. They represent the first records of C. hypsibia and S. bedfordiae in Ningxia, and expand the known distribution range of the two species.

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    The activity budget and the influencing factor of a monogamous western black crested gibbon ( Nomascus concolor) group
    Ziqian LI, Yongliang ZHU, Linguo LI, Wei LI, Jianguang YANG, Zhenhua GUAN, Xuelong JIANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 141-148.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150726
    Abstract657)   HTML39)    PDF (1940KB)(681)       Save

    The behavioral adaptation of primates to high-altitude habitats has long been a topic of interest in primate research, and recent years have seen a growing focus on behavioral differences of the same species across different habitats. The western black crested gibbon (Nomascus concolor) is a National First-Class Protected Wild Animal in China and boasts the largest population of gibbons in the country. While the species is concentrated in the Mt. Ailao and Mt. Wuliang areas of central Yunnan, there are significant differences in their habitats and social organization between the two locations, and limited research has been conducted on Mt. Ailao gibbons. This study presents the first report on the activity budget, diet, and seasonal variations of a monogamous gibbon group in the high-altitude habitat of Mt. Ailao. Between 2014 - 2015, observations totaling 468 hours were recorded using the instantaneous scanning method at 3-minute intervals. Behavioral data showed that moving behavior was the most prevalent at 38.1%, followed by resting at 36.4%, feeding at 23.3%, singing at 1.9%, and other behavior at 1.3%. Food types were identified in 3 784 feeding behaviors, with leaves accounting for 41.1%, fruit for 33.3%, flowers for 21.0%, epiphytes for 3.9%, and other foods for 0.6%. The study found significant differences in the activity and diet of gibbons between the rainy and dry seasons, with increased fruit consumption during the former and an increased proportion of leaves and flowers during the latter. Additionally, the gibbons increased their resting time and reduced feed and move time during the cold and dry season, while they increased move time and reduced rest and feed time during the hot and rainy season, demonstrating energy-conservative behavioral strategies adopted by gibbons in high-altitude habitats. The results also highlight the influence of habitat food distribution patterns on behavioral strategies, as seen in the comparison with Mt. Wuliang. In conclusion, the study emphasizes the need for systematic research on more monogamous western black crested gibbon groups to gain a full understanding of the adaptive behavior and evolution of social organization in gibbons.

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    Bird and mammal diversity inventory by camera trapping in the Neixiang Baotianman National Nature Reserve, Henan Province
    Qinghao ZHANG, Song YAO, Kai XU, Tong LIU, Wenhong XIAO, Bingyong BAI, Xiaoqun HUANG, Zhishu XIAO
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 206-214.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150633
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    We conducted a 3-year survey for large and medium-sized mammals and ground-dwelling birds using infrared cameras from April 2015 to September 2018 in the Neixiang Baotianman National Nature Reserve, Henan province. Based on 12 040 independent images and 37 923 effective camera days from 62 camera traps sites, we identified 54 species belonging to 12 orders and 26 families, including 35 bird species belonging to 6 orders and 12 families and 19 mammal species belonging to 6 orders and 14 families. Turdus rubrocanus, Pomatorhinus hypoleucos, and Latoucheornis siemsseni were newly recorded in the reserve. Among the recorded species, Moschus berezovskii and Aquila chrysaeto are listed as Class Ⅰ National Protected Species, and 13 species as Class Ⅱ national protected animals, e.g. Prionailurus bengalensis, Martes flavigula, Macaca mulatta, Naemorhedus griseus. According to the IUCN Red List, M. berezovskii is listed as endangered, N. griseus as vulnerable, and Arctonyx collaris as near endangered. Based on the Red List of China’s Vertebrates, M. berezovskii is classified as critically endangered, four species are listed as vulnerable and ten species as near endangered. The top three mammals with the highest relative abundance index and site occupancies were Sus scrofa, Hystrix hodgsoni, and A. collaris. The birds with higher relative abundance index and site occupancies were Pucrasia macrolopha and Chrysolophus pictus. Moreover, human activities and livestock grazing were the main disturbance in the reserve. We obtained for the first time images of captured macaques kept for ecotourism. The study provides baseline information for long-term monitoring and research of wildlife and biodiversity management and conservation of the reserve.

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    An investigation of brodifacoum resistance and Vkorc1 gene polymorphism in the Rattus norvegicus from Macao
    Min GUO, Jie LIANG, Xiangyang HE, Weixin OU, Dingxiong PENG, Zhanzhao MAI, Haitao HUANG, Libiao ZHANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 698-704.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150579
    Abstract649)   HTML7)    PDF (925KB)(809)       Save

    The 2nd-generation anticoagulant rodenticides (ARs) are widely used for their higher eradicative rate and safety than the 1st-generation ARs. However, long-term use of the 2nd generation ARs could cause AR resistance in rats. Recently, researchers have reported resistance to the 2nd generation ARs bromadiolone and difenacoum in rats. Brodifacoum is a widely used 2nd-generation ARs of high toxicity that causes coagulation dysfunction and cytotoxicity in rats, but at present, the evolution of rat resistance against brodifacoum remains unclear. Macao has continuously used brodifacoum since 1995, allowing us to explore the development of rat resistance against brodifacoum. In this study, a total of 61 rats (Rattus norvegicus) were captured in Macao from October to December 2019. Among them, 44 rats were chosen to perform the LFP test (with 0.005% brodifacoum). The results showed that these rats consumed (15.28 ± 1.40) mg/kg (mean ± SE) brodifacoum on average, resulting in all of them dying within 7 days. Furthermore, we detected the nucleotide polymorphism of vitamin K-epoxide reductase complex 1 (Vkorc1) in all the 61 captured rats, and found none of the previously identified AR-resistant nonsynonymous mutations in Vkorc1 genes, but did detect 2 synonymous mutations [at amino acid locus 68: H (CAC)-H (CAT), mutation rate: 100%; and amino acid locus 82: I (ATA)-I (ATT), mutation rate: 32.72%]. The fact that none of the rats were brodifacoum-resistant suggests that no resistance propagated in R. norvegicus population after 25 years of use of brodifacoum in Macao. Nevertheless, persistent surveillance on the development of rat resistance to brodifacoum in the region is still needed.

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    Analysis of the Père David’s deer population mortality in Dafeng Milu National Nature Reserve
    Yijun REN, Daming SUN, Junai ZHEN, Libo WANG, Yumeng ZHAO, Hua SHEN, Bin LIU, Yuqing CHEN
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 741-748.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150631
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    From 2009 to 2020, we systematically investigated the population, mortality, and death factors of Père David’s deer (Elaphurus davidianus) in the Dafeng Milu National Nature Reserve, Jiangsu, China. The result showed the annual growth rate of the population was 13.09% ± 5.96%, which continuously increased in the 12 years. The annual mortality rate was 3.53% ± 2.27%, with an obvious fluctuation every 2 years. There was no significant difference in mortality of adults and sub-adults in different seasons, but significant in juveniles.Significant differences in mortality among different age groups were observed. The adults died most in summer and autumn, while the juveniles died most in winter and spring. 48.77% of subjects tend to choose the underbrush for dying. The death factors among different age groups were significantly different. The elders and the juveniles mainly died of epidemic diseases, including viral, bacterial, and parasitic. While the sub-adults died in accidents. We suggested that it is necessary to strengthen the daily monitoring and epidemic disease prevention in wildlife management. Our data provided important information for the protection of Père David’s deer in Dafeng Reserve.

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    Use of an artificial water source by wild camels in the Gansu Annanba Wild Camel National Nature Reserve
    Yongxiang ZHOU, Jianquan LIU, Duoliang ZHOU, Hao WU, Xiaomei YANG, Tianhui WANG, Yadong XUE
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 634-640.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150663
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    Artificial water sources are an important conservation tool for endangered species living in desert landscapes because they increase water availability and survival likelihood. To determine the degree to which artificial water sources are used by wild animals, video surveillance data collected from August 2020 to August 2021 of an artificial water source in the Gansu Annanba Wild Camel National Nature Reserve were analyzed. During the monitoring period, a total of 533 video records were obtained, including 299 independent records. Our results showed that a variety of wild animals used the artificial water source, including 7 mammalian species and 7 avian species. Wild camel (Camelus ferus), the main target of species protection in the reserve, had the highest number of records (205), accounting for 67% of total independent records. The average time wild camels spent at the artificial water source was (15.66 ± 15.35) min and the average number of camels present was 6.82 ± 7.01. Time spent at the artificial water source by wild camels was significantly correlated with the number of camels present (P < 0.001), and the number of wild camels was significantly different among seasons (P < 0.005). The use of the artificial water source was the highest in summer and the lowest in spring. Daily activity patterns revealed a unimodal pattern, with the highest peak of activity occurring at 12: 00. This study revealed that artificial water sources are used by animals of conservation concern, such as wild camels. These results provide a useful reference for further revealing the behavior and ecological habits of wild camels and for promoting the conservation and management of imperiled wildlife by artificial measures.

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    Utilization characteristics of wildlife on earthquake‑damaged sites based on camera-traps
    Zhenshan GUO, Jinyan HUANG, Jin HOU, Jiao XIANG, Dian LIU, Jindong ZHANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 665-676.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150660
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    Earthquake and secondary geological disasters significantly affect the diversity and space use of wildlife. To investigate the utilization characteristics of wildlife on earthquake damage sites caused by earthquakes and secondary geological disasters, and provide basic data for biodiversity protection and the ecological recovery in post-earthquake, here we surveyed the mammal and bird species composition and their relative abundance index inside and outside earthquake-damaged sites of the Wolong Nature Reserve using camera-trap data. Based on 2 833 camera-days, we recorded 28 species (15 mammals and 13 birds) in earthquake-damaged sites, of which the animals with the highest frequency were herbivorous (those eating roots, leaves, and fruits) such as Chrysolophus pictus, Hystrix brachyura, and Naemorhedus griseus. 60% of the recorded animals are classified as endangered (EN), vulnerable (VU), and near threatened (NT) by the IUCN Red List. This indicates that rare wildlife used the earthquake-damaged sites in the process of recovery, and those earthquake-damaged sites have potential ecological meaning for rare wildlife. The species composition was apparently varied among weak, moderate, and severe damaged sites, and the relative abundance index (RAI) of animals was the highest in moderate damaged sites, followed by weak and severe damaged sites. The number of species and RAI of wild animals outside the earthquake-damaged sites are higher than inside. This shows the secondary geological disasters caused by the Wenchuan earthquake still influence wild animals’habitat selection and utilization. We suggest carrying out long-term monitoring on the wildlife utilization in those earthquake-damaged areas.

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    Diagnosis of peste des petits ruminants and genetic evolution analysis of N and F genes of Pseudois nayaur in Qinghai
    Wei KAN, Leibin LI, Xuyang ZHAO, Lin YANG, Yu SUN, Jinshan CAI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 171-181.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150673
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    On January 19, 2021, an unexplained death of a Pseudois nayaur occurred in the Yikegaoli area, Balong Township, Dulan County, Haixi Prefecture, Qinghai Province. The animal was characterized by being alone, lying on the ground, physical weakness, difficulty in foraging, and black attachments around the anus. It was diagnosed as peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV) infection by clinical symptoms, pathological autopsy, and qRT-PCR. Part of PPRV N and F genes were amplified from the diseased tissues of the dead P. nayaur by RT-PCR. Megalig, NT1, and MEGA 6.0 software were used to compare and analyze the N and F gene sequences of P. nayaur PPRV and the phylogenetic tree was constructed. The results show that the homology between the N and F genes of PPRV infecting the P. nayaur from Qinghai and the Xinjiang strain (China/Xinjiang/2015/16) was 99.43% and 99.73% respectively. Phylogenetic analysis showed that it belonged to the lineage Ⅳ. At the nucleic acid sequence level of N and F genes, it has the closest genetic relationship with the strains isolated in Xinjiang. Compared with foreign strains, the N gene is more related to the strains isolated from Senegal and Nigeria and the F gene is distantly related to foreign strains. In conclusion, Qinghai P. nayaur PPR strains belong to the gene Ⅳ lineage, which is the same pedigree as the wild virus strains currently prevalent in China.

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    The pellet-decay rate of red deer ( Cervus elaphus) in the Lesser Xing’an Mountains
    Xuefeng SHAO, Xiaoying PING, Yueyuan LI, Long CHEN, Zhiwen NIE, Yuanman HU, Yuehui LI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 157-163.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150682
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    The pellet-decay rate is the time period during which pellet piles disappeared under natural conditions. Pellet-decay rate is a significant parameter for estimating the population size of deer by using the method of pellet distance sampling, providing the foundation for research on population size. In this study, we aim to answer the question of what is the pellet-decay rate of deer under continental climates in high-latitude temperate zones and solve the time-consuming and labor-consuming problem of revisiting each pellet group at their original positions when pellet piles are scattered due to low density and hidden behavior of those species in China. Within the Lesser Xing’an Mountains (46°28′ - 49°21′N)located in the temperate continental climate zone, we selected the Jianshe forest farm in Tieli Forestry Bureau as study area. In January 2015, we collected 38 groups of fresh pellets from red deer (Cervus elaphus) and moved them to a typical conveniently-revisited red deer habitat characterized by coniferous and broad-leaved mixed forest and sunny slope, and recorded the original number of pellets in each pile. After that, we made eight visits at certain intervals to record the remaining pellets in each pile and whether each pile was completely decayed. Then, we used logistic binary regression using the R 4.1.2 software to calculate the intercept b0 and slope b1 of the model and the MATLAB R2020b software to calculate the pellet-decay rate. The result showed that the average pellet-decay rate of red deer was 646 ± 53 days. In this study, pellet piles were manually moved and set in one place for observation, which provided a feasible way to study the pellet-decay rate in areas with low density of the target population. This study enriched the research on the pellet-decay rate of deer in China, thus alleviating the obstacle of using the pellet-based distance sampling method to estimate the population size.

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    The variations of nephrons and relevant function factors between hibernating and non-hibernating Daurian ground squirrels
    Xiujing ZHANG, Heng WANG, Qiumei ZHONG, Chenxi YANG, Jianli WANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 677-686.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150587
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    Hibernation is an adaptive survival strategy through which the hibernating species copes with months of low ambient temperature and a lack of food. The Daurian ground squirrel (Spermophilus dauricus) is a typical fat-storing hibernator. To further investigate the renal adaptive mechanisms of hibernators, the nephronal morphology changes and the concentrations of serum creatinine, urine and antidiuretic hormone (ADH) were examined during summer active (July), winter hibernating (December), and early spring arousal (March) periods in the Daurian ground squirrel by the means of histology, blood biochemical analysis, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The gene expression of aquaporins (AQP1, AQP2, and AQP3), ADH receptor (V2R), and endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) were also examined by the means of real-time PCR. The density of glomerulus, relative diameter of distal tubules and proximal tubules, and ratio of corticomedullary proximal tubules to distal tubules were found to be lower during hibernating and arousal periods compared to active period. The concentration of serum creatinine and urine increased significantly during hibernating period compared to those during active and arousal periods. The serum ADH concentration and V2R gene expression level decreased significantly during hibernating period compared to those during active periods. The gene expression of AQP1 during hibernating period was higher than that during arousal period, and the AQP3 gene expression was lower than that during active period, while the AQP2 gene expression level did not change significantly. The eNOS gene expression during hibernating period was lower than that during arousal period. These results indicate that the Daurian ground squirrel lowered its renal function during hibernation. The aquaporins, eNOS, and ADH show functional adjustments to adapt to different periods. These results might provide a better understanding of the renal adaptation mechanism in hibernating animals.

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    Effects of cohabitation on emotion and hypothalamic oxytocin expression in middy gerbils
    Fei MIAO, Zixuan KONG, Shaobin YANG, Peng YU
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 164-170.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150725
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    Cohabitation between male and female is an important stage of long lasting pair bonding, which involves a series of physical and emotional changes. However, due to the lack of monogamous animal models, the neurobiological regulation, especially the sex difference, in the process of pair bonding is still unclear. In this study, we investigated the effects of male and female cohabitation on emotion and the numbers of oxytocin-neuron in relative brain regions in middy gerbils (Meriones meridianus) using elevated plus maze, forced swimming and immunohistochemical methods. The results showed that, after 10 days of cohabitation, the frequency of entering the open arm of female gerbils in the cohabitation group (FF) was significantly decreased (P < 0.05), and the anxiety index was significantly increased (P < 0.05). In the forced swimming experiment, the frequency and time in immobility in FF were significantly increased (P < 0.05). The expression level of oxytocin in paraventricular nucleus and supraoptic nucleus of hypothalamus in FF was significantly increased (P < 0.05). However, there were no significant changes in behavior and oxytocin levels in cohabiting males, which may be related to sexual dyssynchrony in the formation of pair bonds. In conclusion, cohabitation only causes anxiety-like behavior in female middy gerbils, which may be related to hypothalamic oxytocin system.

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    Vkorc1 polymorphism of two rodent species in different habitats
    Xingen YANG, Yanlong WANG, Bo ZOU, Wenying CHANG, Yu HOU, Youyou ZHAO, Tinglin WANG, Jianxu ZHANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 687-697.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150692
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    To explore the polymorphism of vitamin K epoxide reductase complex subunit 1 gene (Vkorc1), which is closely related to the resistance to anticoagulant rodenticides in the long-tailed hamster (Cricetulus longicaudatus) and the Asian house rat (Rattus tanezumi), the mutation sites of Vkorc1 and their distribution were detected. In present study, samples were collected using the trapping methods from farms at 14 sites and agricultural fields at 13 sites. The exons of Vkorc1 were amplified and sequenced. The sequences were aligned using MEGA X to visually detect the mutation sites in exons and their distribution. The results showed that C. longicaudatus samples were captured in all the 13 sampling sites and accounted for 23.29% of wild rodents. R.tanezumi were distributed in 8 sampling sites, accounting for 68.63% of commensal rodents. Six silent mutation sites and 5 missense mutation sites in Vkorc1 were detected in C. longicaudatus samples (n = 105). Among them, silent mutation C438T (His146His) had the highest mutation rate of 67.62%. A total of 17 C. longicaudatus samples existed missense mutation sites. We found 6 silent mutation sites and 1 missense mutation site in R. tanezumi samples (n = 70). The mutation rates of the most common silent mutation sites A321C (Ile107Ile) and T411C (Thr137Thr) was up 18.57%. The missense mutation A416G (Tyr139Cys) associated with drug resistance was found in 8 R. tanezumi samples, of which 7 were captured from Xiaodian, Taiyuan, with a mutation rate of 35.00%. In conclusion, Vkorc1 mutations were detected both in anthropogenic habitats and natural ecosystems. We should strengthen the monitoring of R. tanezumi in Xiaodian, Taiyuan, since the formation of the resistant population.

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    Habitat prediction of Asiatic golden cat ( Catopuma temminckii) in Baishuijiang National Nature Reserve, Gansu Province
    Liwen HE, Xiaotong YANG, Jirong TENG, Junliang WANG, Sheng LI, Lingyun XIAO, Jian HUANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 237-247.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150737
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    The Asiatic golden cat (Catopuma temminckii) is listed as a First Class species in the National Key Protected Wild Animals in China, and assessed as Near Threatened (NT) and Endangered (EN) by IUCN Red List and China Species Red List, respectively. Once widely distributed from East to Southeast Asia, the Asiatic golden cat inhabits diverse habitats ranging from lowland rainforests to montane coniferous forests and subalpine rhododendron forests, whereas its habitat selection preference remains poorly understood. In this research we determined the habitat selection strategy of this species in the montane forest ecosystem in Southwest China. We collected the occurrence data (292 independent detections at 117 sites) of the Asiatic golden cat through camera-trapping surveys from 2016 - 2019 in Baishuijiang National Nature Reserve in Gansu Province, and constructed a MaxEnt model with 7 environmental variables (altitude, aspect, slope, distance to river, land use type, distance to road, distance to residents) to predict its suitable habitats in the reserve. The results showed that the suitable habitats were estimated as 1 045.90 km2 in the reserve, yet separated into the northern and southern parts by natural and anthropocentric barriers including the Bailongjiang River, 212 National Highway and the residential area along the low valley. The model response curves showed that the Asiatic golden cat prefers the evergreen coniferous forests close to rivers, at an elevation of around 2 400 m. The results indicated that, the wide river and anthropogenic impacts (e.g. roads) are possibly key factors driving the fragmentation status of the Asiatic golden cat’s habitat at the landscape scale. Future studies shall further examine the impacts of different types of human disturbance on Asiatic golden cats, and explore their basic ecology including diet composition, activity rhythm, population status and dynamics by integrating multiple methods.

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    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 235-236.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150790
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    Advances and prospects in germplasm preservation of non-human primates
    Mingwen LI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2022, 42 (6): 728-740.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150626
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    Non-human primates are an important part of the biodiversity and valuable laboratory animals for biomedical research, however, wild populations of many non-human primate species have declined alarmingly, even on the brink of extinction, due to human activities, habitat destruction, hunting, and genetic isolation. Germplasm preservation is of great significance to the rescue of non-human primates and preservation of genetic materials. This article reviews research progresses in cryopreservation of sperm, oocytes, embryos, and gonadal tissues in the groups of New World monkeys, Old World monkeys, and great apes, and introduces the main methods of germplasm preservation in marmosets, squirrel monkeys, rhesus monkey, cynomolgus monkeys, and chimpanzees. The future research directions of non-human primate germplasm preservation are also discussed.

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    Distribution, group size and activity rhythm of wolves ( Canis lupus) in the Gongga Mountains, Sichuan Province
    Jiang QIAO, Xiaoli GONG, Wei JIA, Guoqing JIA, Yong JIANG, Huaming ZHOU, Jiaqi LI, Anxiang WEN, Jie WANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 248-257.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150542
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    The wolf (Canis lupus) is one of the largest and most widely distributed carnivores in the world. Historically, it occurred throughout mainland China, but its range has shrunk dramatically due to habitat loss and human persecution. We conducted wildlife camera trapping in 1 km grid cells, with 195 cells and 286 sites in total, in Mt. Gongga from 2011 to 2020. Wolves were detected in 46 cells and at 56 sites, with 278 independent detections. The detection percentage was 23.6% and 19.6% for grid cells and sites, respectively. Wolves were found at altitudes ranging from 3 097 m to 4 563 m. The group size of wolves averaged (1.2 ± 0.5) ind., with no significant variance among vegetation types or between seasons (t = -1.119, P = 0.266; t = -0.251, P = 0.801). Wolves were active at 03: 00 - 07: 00 and 15: 00 - 17: 00 in the dry season (November - April), and were active at 03: 00 - 07: 00 and 13: 00 - 15: 00 in the rainy season (May - October). The temporal activity pattern significantly overlapped between wolves and sympatric herbivores. The highest degree of overlap was with the Chinese serow Capricornis milneedwardsii (Δ4 = 0.908) in the dry season and with the sambar deer Rusa unicolor (Δ4 = 0.895) in the rainy season. This study determined the distribution, population size and activity rhythm of wolves in Mt. Gongga for the first time, providing reliable information for further studies and large carnivore management in the nature reserve.

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    The three-dimensional reconstruction and parameter measurement of the skull of Amur leopard ( Panthera pardus orientalis) in China
    Qiang LIU, Haijun WANG, Yue ZHAO, Shiyu CHEN, Guangshun JIANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 315-321.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150740
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    The Amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis), one of the world’s most endangered cat subspecies, is mainly distributed in the Northeastern Tiger and Leopard National Park and its surrounding areas in China. No skull measurements have been reported due to its rarity. In this study, the head specimen of a female Amur leopard who died of severe illness was used as the research object. The image data was acquired by scanning with the Dachang Sunshine32 X-ray computed tomography device and the 3D skull reconstruction was performed with the 3D Slicer software to establish the‘digital specimen’of the Amur leopards and measure 26 cranial parameters. This study filled the gap in the digital morphology model of the northeast leopard’s skull among the big cats in China, and provided a basis for the future conservation work of large endangered cats, such as research, conservation, medical treatment, data preservation and feline population differentiation. Morphological information from the skull laid the foundation for taxonomic studies of the Amur leopard. For taxonomic studies of mammals, cranial features have been, and continue to be, important evidence for understanding both interspecific and intraspecific taxonomy.

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    Characteristics of microsatellite distributions in genomes of Hipposideros armiger (Chiroptera)
    Weiwei SHAO, Fen QIAO, Wei CAI, Zhihua LIN, Li WEI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 182-192.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150724
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    The vertebrate genome is rich in microsatellite information. In this study, the distribution of microsatellite (SSRs) in the complete genome and its genes of Hipposideros armiger (Chiroptera) was analyzed, and Gene Ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) containing microsatellite coding sequence (CDS) were explored. The results showed that the total genome size of H. armiger was 2.24 Gb and contained 497 883 microsatellites. Mononucleotide (173 953 microsatellites) and dinucleotide repeats (222 591 microsatellites) were the most diverse in the genome of H. armiger accounting for 34.94% and 44.71% of whole genome size, with their relative abundance of 77.78 loci/Mb and 99.52 loci/Mb, respectively. The most microsatellite types from mononucleotide repeat to hexanucleotide repeat were (A)n, (AC)n, (TAT)n, (TTTA)n, (AACAA)n and (TATATA)n, with their frequency of 95.14%, 55.25%, 38.41%, 22.17%, 48.68% and 20.30% respectively. The number and abundance of microsatellites were different in both gene regions and intergenic regions. The diversity of microsatellites was highest in intergenic region with 322 666 microsatellites, and its abundance was 2 541.57 loci/Mb, whereas lowest in coding region with 1 461 microsatellites, and its abundance was 461.98 loci/Mb. The distribution characteristics of microsatellites in intergenic region and total genome were similar. Trinucleotide repeat were the most common types of microsatellites in the coding region, while mono-, di- and tri-nucleotide repeat were the most common types of microsatellites in the exons. The positional specificity of microsatellites abundance distributions in 500 bp upstream, exon, intron and 500 bp downstream were 16 400.94 loci/Mb, 972.12 loci/Mb, 2 180.66 loci/Mb and 3 899.89 loci/Mb, respectively. A total of 1 461 microsatellite coding sequences (CDS) were found in the genome of H. armiger, and 1 226 genes were annotated. GO was mainly annotated into 63 functional genes and assigned to 26 439 GO items. The most significant KEGG enrichment was in the signal transduction pathway, which contained 146 genes. The results of this study not only provide a reference for the screening of high-quality microsatellites in H. armiger, it will also provide a reference for genome-wide analysis of microsatellite distribution in other Chiroptera species and the study of their biological functions in the whole genome.

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    Effects of dietary protein contents on the immune function of plateau pika ( Ochotona curzoniae)
    Lu ZHANG, Xueqin WU, Huiqing CHEN, Xin DONG, Guozhen SHANG, Yan WU, Jianghui BIAN
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 293-303.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150743
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    The plateau pika (Ochotona curzoniae) is not only a small herbivorous mammal unique to the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, but also a keystone species in the alpine grassland ecosystem. The population number of plateau pikas has increased dramatically with the degradation of grasslands caused by overgrazing. Our recent research has found that the immune system of plateau pikas was significantly enhanced as the alpine grassland degrades, and speculated it maybe related to the rich high-protein food resources in the degraded alpine grassland. To further validate this hypothesis, a field experiment was conducted in a highly degraded grassland of the Qinghai Haibei National Field Research Station of Alpine Grassland Ecosystem. The objective of this study is to verify the hypothesis that rich high-protein food resources could increase the immune system of plateau pikas. Six sample plots (70 m × 70 m) were randomized amongst three treatment groups: no supplementation (control); supplementation with rabbit chow with 5% protein; and supplementation with rabbit chow with 20% protein. We measured the fecal cortisol metabolite (FCM) levels, phytohemagglutinin (PHA) response, IgG levels of keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH) in serum, and intestinal parasitic infection status of plateau pikas. The results showed that supplementation with pelleted chow with 20% protein treatment significantly decreased the FCM levels of plateau pikas, significantly increased the PHA response and IgG levels against KLH, and significantly reduced the infection rate of coccidia and the infection intensity of cestodes. This result confirmed the above hypothesis and suggested that in degraded alpine grasslands, high-protein food can promote the growth of plateau pika populations by alleviating the vicious cycle between stress-immunity-parasitic infections.

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    Analysis of inorganic elements in the bile of Plateau zokor and Gansu zokor
    Wen QIN, Chuanhua YANG, Zhenyuan CAI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (2): 229-234.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150685
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    The content of inorganic elements provides an important basis for drug processing and finding substitutes. Inorganic elements, which play an important role in the whole life-history of animals, cannot be synthesized and can only be obtained from the environment. Plateau zokor (Eospalax baileyi) and Gansu zokor (E. cansus) are two rodents that live underground for their entire lives. The analysis of inorganic elements in the bile of the two zokor species will not only provide guidance for finding alternatives for cherish medicine bear bile, but also help to explore wildlife medicinal resources. In this study, the contents of inorganic chemical elements in the bile were obtained by wet digestion and detected by an ICAP 6300 inductively coupled plasma emission spectrometer. An independent sample t-test was used to compare the contents of inorganic chemical elements in the bile of the two species. The linear relationship between the contents of inorganic elements was also analyzed. The results showed that the contents of inorganic elements in the bile of Plateau zokor and Gansu zokor are in different orders. The positive and negative correlation of inorganic elements in the bile of Plateau zokor is different from that of Gansu zokor. The higher content of inorganic elements in the bile of Gansu zokor than that of Plateau zokor may be related to the relatively higher content of inorganic elements in the food of Gansu zokor, and also related to the different synergistic effect of inorganic elements in the bile between the two species. The main inorganic elements in the bile of the two zokor and species are similar to that of bear bile, and the medicinal properties among them also resemble the inorganic element composition. The bile of Plateau zokor and Gansu zokor are preferred to be gas medicine, and also beneficial to the treatment of sports injury and strengthening tendons and bones. Therefore, the bile of the two zokors can be used as a potential substitute for bear bile, our research also benefits to transforming the ‘poison zokors’, which with large amounts of resources, into effective medicinal resources.

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    Diversity and activity rhythm of mammals and birds in the Badagongshan National Nature Reserve, Hunan inferred through camera traps
    Xiangdong RUAN, Yixin CHEN, Boyu WANG, Xiao YANG, Chunlin LIAO, Yang YU, Cheng GUO
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 342-351.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150708
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    Identifying the status of fauna diversity in protected areas is important for understanding their current population demography and distribution, while is essential for accurate conservation planning. Due to the complex terrain and dense vegetation, the knowledge of the fauna diversity status of Mt. Wuling, situated at the edge of the Yun-Gui Plateau,remains insufficient. From March 2017 to December 2018, we investigated the diversity, community composition, and activity rhythms of terrestrial mammals and birds by deploying 60 infrared camera traps at the northern Mt. Wuling in Badagongshan National Nature Reserve, Hunan, China. We established 60 camera sites, monitored totaling 18 525 camera-trapping days, and identified 2 865 independent images. We totally identified 15 mammals and 35 birds, belonging to 8 orders, 25 families, and 37 genera. We also identified three birds, namely Schoeniparus dubius, Turdus feae, and Emberiza tristrami as new recorded species for the reserve. Rodentia, Cetartiodactyla, Carnivora, Galliformes, and Passeriformes were the most abundant orders and widely occurred in the study area. Based on the detailed time records of the eight most abundant species, the results show that: (1) Dremomys pyrrhomerus and Paguma larvata are typically diurnal and nocturnal mammals respectively, and their activity rhythms are consistent with other populations outside the region; (2) Both Elaphodus cephalophus and Sus scrofa exhibit cathemeral activities but their activity rhythms are significantly different from each other; (3) We also detected significant differences in activity rhythms, between Tragopan temminckii and Chrysolophus pictus as well as between Garrulax ocellatus and Leiothrix lutea. This survey provides basic and valuable information on the current status of mammalian and avian diversity in Badagongshan National Nature Reserve, which is essential for wildlife monitoring and biodiversity conservation in this area.

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    Mammal diversity in the forest fragments of Wuhan City
    Qiwei WANG, Hengyue ZHAO, Qin LIU, Neng WAN, Zhibing ZHU, Hongyu NIU, Hongmao ZHANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 258-269.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150730
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    Urbanization is one of the main reasons for forest fragmentation in urban systems, which causes threats to biodiversity through both species decline and biotic homogenization. This study aims to reveal the richness, abundance, and diversity of mammals on the fragmented forest patches in urban, suburban and rural areas. Our study helps to provide substantial data for the protection of mammal diversity and land-use planning in urban ecosystems. According to the urban-suburban-rural gradient, we surveyed the diversity of mammals on 13 forest patches in Wuhan from 2019 to 2021 by using literature reviewing and camera-trapping. Taking the patch area, distance to the urban center, isolation, and shape index as patch characteristics of urbanization, we analyzed the relationships between species composition and patch characteristics by using RDA, and examined the relationships between the species diversity and patch characteristics by using linear regression. We recorded 15 forest mammals in total, which belong to 8 orders and 6 families. The dominant species are Racoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), Asian badger (Meles leucurus), Wild boar (Sus scrofa), and Confucian niviventer (Niviventer confucianus). The fauna type is dominated by oriental species. The species composition was positively correlated with distance to the urban center in suburban forest, and negatively correlated with area in urban forest. The species richness (P < 0.01) and Shannon-Wiener diversity index (P < 0.05) were significantly positively correlated with the distance to urban center. There was no significant correlation between species richness and Shannon-Wiener diversity index with isolation and shape index (P > 0.05). Our study showed that the distance to the urban center was the main factor affecting forest mammal diversity in Wuhan. The high speed of urbanization in Wuhan has reduced the mammal diversity. For maintaining and restoring the high diversity of mammals, we recommend that some specific measures should be carried out in urban forest patches to reduce human disturbance and protect natural forests, especially the continuous natural forests in the suburban and rural areas.

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    Screening the critical morphology and skull indices for identifying Rattus norvegicus and Rattus tanezumi
    Yan CHEN, Yaxian YUE, Tao WANG, Lei ZHEN, Donghui LI, Runyu TAO, Ying SONG, Deng WANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 322-332.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150720
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    Clarifying the validity of characters that can classify similar rodent species can contribute to defining species quickly and accurately. We identified 36 sympatric rats into R. norvegicus (n = 31) and R. tanezumi (n = 5) by aligning the partial sequence of Vkorc1 gene (725 bp). Based on the identification results of Vkorc1 gene, we compared the accuracy of the classification and identification results of the two species by principal component analysis and cluster analysis of morphology and skull indices, which included 21 permutations of body weight, body length, tail length, ear length and hind foot length, tail length/body length, hind foot length/body length and fatness, and 2 combining indices of skull metrics. The body metrics combination of tail length/body length, ear length/body length, and fatness accurately classified all individuals of the two species. The skull morphology index combination of the length of the upper cheek tooth row, length of the lower cheek tooth row, length of the tympanic bulla, and width of the tympanic bulla also all individuals of the two species. These results provided the critical body or skull morphological characters and corresponding analytical approaches for classifying and identifying the two species.

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    Behavioral ethogram and posture‒act‒environment coding system of wild Leopard cats ( Prionailurus bengalensis) based on infrared camera technology
    Ling LIU, Aigang XIAO, Tiejian ZHAO, Xiaomei FENG, Suxia SHEN, Xianwang LU, Hongwu GUAN, Dapeng ZHAO
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 270-279.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150713
    Abstract437)   HTML620)    PDF (7366KB)(448)       Save

    From June 2017 to April 2021, the behavioral ethogram and posture?act?environment (PAE) coding system of wild Leopard cats (Prionailurus bengalensis) were investigated based on infrared camera technology. The behavioral diversity of wild leopard cats across seasons and age groups was also statistically analyzed. In this study, we identified and recorded 8 types of postures, 39 acts, and 25 behaviors of wild leopard cats and established the behavioral ethogram and PAE coding system for this species. We also found that the total absolute diversity index Htotal and the total relative diversity index rtotal of Leopard cats were the highest in summer and the lowest in winter. There was a significant difference between the absolute diversity index H and relative diversity index r in autumn and winter (H: Z = -2.023, P = 0.043; r: Z = -2.023, P = 0.043). The total absolute diversity index Htotal and the total relative diversity index rtotal of adults were higher than cubs, and there were significant age-group differences in the relative diversity index r (Z = -2.018, P = 0.044). These findings provide a scientific basis for the comprehensive protection of natural populations of wild leopard cats.

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    Characteristics of tetracycline antibiotic resistance genes in intestinal microorganisms and intestinal environment of Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys
    Shuzhen ZOU, Ya LUO, Ming CHENG, Fan WANG, Dayong LI, Di KANG, Yun TANG
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 304-314.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150671
    Abstract433)   HTML100)    PDF (6299KB)(420)       Save

    The gut of wild animals has been shown to be a reservoir for microorganisms that contain antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs). Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys (Rhinopithecus bieti) are at particular risk for ARGs. The intestinal microbial composition of female and male Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys was determined using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Tetracycline antibiotic resistance genes (T-ARGs) and mobile genetic elements (MGEs) were detected by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), and intestinal enzyme activities and nutrient contents of the monkeys intestinal microorganisms were analyzed. A network model was used to analyze the potential host bacteria of T-ARGs and MGEs. A simple correlative relationship was used to analyze the relationship between the abundances of T-ARGs and MGEs and the intestinal micro?ecological environment. The results showed no significant difference in the absolute abundance of T-ARGs and MGEs between female and male monkey groups. The relative abundance of Verrucomicrobia and Fibrobacteres in the intestines of the female group were significantly lower than those of the male group, while the activities of cellulase and protease content were significantly higher than those of the male group. T-ARGs could be used as an indicator of management risks of Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys in the exhibition area, who may face three potential risks. First, opportunistic pathogens in Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys are potential hosts of T-ARGs and there may be a risk of drug resistance in Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys treated with tetracycline antibiotics. Second, lipase activity, protease activity, and cellulase activity can improve the transfer ability of MGEs, which suggests that the method of maintaining intestinal digestive ability of Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys in the exhibition area may be contrary to the goal of reducing the transfer ability of T-ARGs. Third, T-ARGs may inhibit proteins being digested and amino acids being absorbed. It is suggested to control the sources of T-ARGs exposure in the exhibition area, in order to ensure the stability of the intestinal micro-ecological environment and to reduce the drug resistance of pathogenic bacteria. Furthermore, extra attention should be paid to the individual health of male Yunnan snub-nosed monkeys.

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    Population viability analysis of Père David’s deer ( Elaphurus davidianus) in Dongting Lake, Hunan Province
    Conglei LI, Shurong TIAN, Yucheng SONG, Hong ZHANG, Dali GAO, Daode YANG, Xiaojie GUI
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 280-292.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150710
    Abstract418)   HTML1750)    PDF (2911KB)(444)       Save

    Population viability analysis is a method of evaluating population size and extinction risk of threatened species, through analysis of factors such as population statistical randomness, environmental randomness, natural disasters, spatial structure of habitats and various management approaches to assess their impacts on threatened species and provide theoretical support for conservation and management strategies.The Père David’s deer (Elaphurus davidianus) population in the Dongting Lake is a naturalized population. Due to low population growth as a result of flooding, and the threat of insularization and inbreeding depression, it is necessary to formulate a conservation action plan to preserve that population. We monitored the population from 2006 to 2020 and analyzed population viability based on the data collected. There were 3 groups of individuals in the area, with a total population size of about 210 individuals. We used the VORTEX model ( to simulate dynamics of the population for the next 100 years based on various population parameters, including current population status, mating system, carrying capacity, and mortality. Under ideal conditions and assumed carrying capacity of 1 000 individuals, the probability of population extinction is 0, the intrinsic growth rate r is 0.0991 ± 0.0800, the instantaneous growth rate λ is 1.1041 ± 1.1900, the net reproduction rate R0 is 2.006 2, the average generation time of females T is 7.03 years, and average generation time of males T is 8.65 years. The population viability analysis indicated that the coefficient of inbreeding will increase by 8.08%, and expected and observed heterozygosity will decrease by 6.57% and 8.30%, respectively. We found through sensitivity analysis that low birth rate and high fawn mortality caused by flooding would be the main factors influencing population growth, and the probability of population extinction would be positively correlated to the frequency and degree of influence of flooding. Based on these analyses, we provided recommendations on protection and management strategies of the population.

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    New records of Crocidura dongyangjiangensis and Crocidura anhuiensis in Jiangxi Province
    Jiangxiao HU, Yifan XU, Zhian ZOU, Wei ZENG, Jie DAI, Xueyang REN, Hongfeng YAO, Zhongzheng CHEN
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 352-356.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150723
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    In June 2022, four specimens of Crocidura were collected from Wuyi Mountain, Yanshan County, Jiangxi Province. Morphological and phylogenetic analyses showed that one specimen is C. dongyangjiangensis, and the other three are C. anhuiensis. Both species are the first records in Jiangxi Province. The specimen of C. dongyangjiangensis exhibits a light gray-brown color, has a small body type head-body length of 63 mm, tail length of 40 mm, cranial length of 16.57 mm, and a narrow skull. These morphological features are consistent with the description of specimens from Dongyangjiang, Zhejiang Province. The maximum likelihood (ML) tree based on Cytochrome b (Cyt b) gene showed a monophyletic group between this specimen and C. dongyangjiangensis, and the genetic distance (p-distance) between them ranged from 0.6% to 1.8%. The other three specimens identified as C.anhuiensis from Jiangxi are medium-sized shrews. They have head-body length of 75 ? 87 mm and tail length of 52 ? 62 mm (68% ? 77% of head-body length), which are consistent with the morphology of the specimens from Huangshan, Anhui Province. The ML tree showed these three specimens formed a monophyletic group with the C. anhuiensis from Anhui, and their genetic difference (p-distance) was 1.2%.

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    Analysis of the nutritional status of vitamins and trace elements in adult male captive giant pandas at different feeding stages
    Mingxi LI, Huanliu HE, Hao ZHANG, Han LI, Tao DENG, Min CHEN, Hairui WANG, Ying YAO
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (3): 333-341.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150691
    Abstract376)   HTML73)    PDF (1912KB)(413)       Save

    In the wild, giant pandas have access to a broad range of dietary options, however, for captive individuals, dietary options are greatly reduced. Maintaining a balanced diet, which includes the appropriate levels of micronutrients, is essential to the ex-situ conservation of the giant panda. Evaluating the micronutrient status of captive giant pandas at different feeding stages is a necessary step in constructing a scientific feeding strategy for this iconic species. In this study, seven healthy adult captive giant pandas were selected and fed bamboo leaves (bamboo leaf stage) and bamboo shoots (bamboo shoots stage) in turn. Feeding tests were carried out three times during the bamboo leaf stage and twice during the shoot stage. Each feeding test lasted for three days and the interval between each feeding test was 28 days. During the tests, the daily food intake of the giant pandas was recorded, the vitamin content of the bamboo that was provided was measured and corresponding mineral content was referenced so as to compare the daily intake of vitamins and minerals during the different feeding stages. Blood samples were collected at the end of each feeding stage, and the serum levels of 13 vitamins and 10 minerals were determined. In bamboo shoots, the contents of VA, VE, VK1, nicotinic acid, pyridoxal and pyridoxine were lower, while the contents of VB5 and VB12 were higher than those in bamboo leaves (P < 0.05). Compared with the bamboo leaf stage, the daily intakes of VE, VK1, Ca, Fe, Cu and Mn decreased significantly, while the daily intakes of VB5, VB6, VB7, VB12, Mg and Zn increased significantly during the bamboo shoot stage (P < 0.05). Moreover, the serum levels of VB2, Cr and Se were lower, while the levels of VE, VK1, VB5, VB7, VB9 and VB12 were higher during the bamboo shoot stage (P < 0.05). The results showed that feeding different bamboo parts could affect both the intake and serum levels of vitamins and minerals of captive giant pandas. The differences and patterns of micro-nutrition status between different bamboo feeding stages can provide a theoretical basis for the provisioning of bamboo as well as the nutritional supplementation in the daily feeding and management of captive giant pandas.

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    Population size and distribution of western black crested gibbon ( Nomascus concolor) in Ailao Mountain, Chuxiong Prefecture, Yunnan Province
    LI Genhui, QIN Zhongyi, LU Lixiong, GAO Wenjun, LUO Wenfu, LI Han, LI Yuwu, YIN Cunquan, XU Ping, YIN Guanghua, LI Fabao, NIU Xiaowei, JIANG Xuelong
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (5): 513-522.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150749
    Abstract49)      PDF (5140KB)(17)       Save
    From November to December 2020, we conducted the second field survey on the population and distribution of the western black crested gibbon ( Nomascus concolor) in Ailao Mountain, Chuxiong Prefecture, Yunnan by interviews and loud morning calls counting method. The survey recorded 61 groups and 14 individuals of western black crested gibbon, a total of about 270 individuals in the National Nature Reserve and its surrounding state forest areas. The gibbon population was mainly found (59 groups and 13 individuals) from the central part of Chuxiong City to the south part of Shuangbai County, while from the central to the north part of Nanhua County it was represented by a small isolated population (two groups and one individual). Compared with the previous survey in 2005, the population of the western black crested gibbon in Ailao Mountains, Chuxiong Prefecture increased significantly but still facing threats from population isolation and human disturbance such as grazing by cattle and goats. According to the current population and distribution pattern, we propose to conduct long-term population dynamic monitoring for concentrated populations, regular and irregular patrolling for isolated and marginal distributed groups, habitat assessment and restoration, and assign the groups in state forests managed by national nature reserve management and protection bureau for protection and conservation of western black crested gibbons in Ailao Mountains, Chuxiong Prefecture, Yunnan.
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    Comparison of intestinal microbiota of golden-headed lion tamarins, golden-handed tamarins and cotton-headed tamarins under the same captive environment
    ZHANG Zeming, YAO Hongyu, WU Nan, ZHAO Lingling, GU Yiru, WANG Yu, WU Hong, ZHAO Dapeng
    ACTA THERIOLOGICA SINICA    2023, 43 (5): 580-592.   DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150739
    Abstract34)      PDF (4950KB)(16)       Save
    The composition of intestinal microbiota in animals is directly related to the host species and their living environment. Studies on intestinal microbiota composition of various species living in the same habitat is important for the conservation of species diversity. Both non-damage sampling and 16S rDNA high-throughput sequencing were used to investigate the structure, diversity, and functional prediction of intestinal microbiota across three species of New World monkeys (golden-headed lion tamarin Leontopithecus chrysomelas, golden-handed tamarin Saguinus midas, and cottonheaded tamarin Saguinus oedipus) from Nanjing Hongshan Forest Zoo. The results showed that a total of 14 phyla, 20 classes, 50 orders, 101 families, 231 genera, and 356 species of intestinal flora were obtained from 18 fecal samples collected from the three species. At the phylum level, the common dominant phyla across the three species were Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria, and Bacteroidetes. At the genus level, the common dominant bacterial genera included Streptococcus and Bifidobacterium. There were significant differences in intestinal microbiota at both the phylum level and the genus level among species, in which the richness of intestinal microbiota in golden-headed lion tamarin was significantly higher than that in the others. This study provides basic data for further investigation on the intestinal microbiota diversity and survival adaptation, and also serves as reference for ex situ management for species conservation.
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