Seasonal changes of the activity patterns of Brandt,s vole (Lasiopodomys brandtii) in the typical steppe in Inner Mongolia
Capture-recapture, hair-dying, and direct sighting techniques were conducted on the field population of Brandt's vole (
Lasiopodomys brandtii) in typical steppe in Inner Mongolia. Four activity indices (daily-discrepancy index θ,diurnal-nocturnal index λ,peak-type index, absolute-active index η)were used to analysis the seasonal changes of the activity patterns of voles. Result show that the diurnal-nocturnal index (λ)of voles is higher than 0.542 through out the year which suggest the vole is a typical diurnal animal. The seasonal change of activity patterns is related to the environmental temperature. In January, February, March, April, November, and December, as the environmental temperature is low, the activity patterns of the Brandt's vole exhibit a single-peak feature. On the contrary, in May, June, and July, as the environmental temperature is high, the activity patterns possess a double-peak feature. Furthermore, the activity types of August, September, and October are between the single-peak and double-peak. There is a significant positive correlation between the peak-type index and the mean temperature (
r= 0.89, n = 12,
P < 0,05). Moreover, the absolute-active index η is also apparently correlated with the environmental temperature (
r=0. 94, n=12,
P< 0.05). From May to September, the daily active time of the Brandt's vole is more than 6 hours. In cold season, however, the daily active time of Brandt's vole is highly reduced. In January and February, the average daily active time on the ground is not more than one minute. Additional lab experiments show that the Brandt's vole is able to be active in dark. However, the night activity is seldom happened in the field population.
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