Table of Content

    30 January 2019, Volume 39 Issue 1
    Relationship research between fecal microbes and short chain fatty acid between wild yak and domestic yak
    LIU Chuanfa, ZHANG Liangzhi, FU Haibo, LI Wenjing, ZHANG He, LI Jiye, PI Li, ZHANG Yanming
    2019, 39(1):  1-7.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150219
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    Short chain fatty acids (SCFA), are a crucial form of nutrition for digestion and assimilation of grass for ruminants including the yaks. Gut microbiota degrades chyme, produces SCFA and influences its proportion. Here, we investigated the fecal microbiota and SCFA concentration in wild yak (Bos mutus) and domestic yak (Bos grunniens). We hypothesize that yaks’ gut microbiota influence concentration of SCFA and in that way increase the assimilation of nutrients from the grass. Microbes and SCFA concentration of yaks were processed and measured by 16S rDNA and Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry respectively. The results show that the yak fecal microbes are mainly composed of Firmicutes(66.47%, 68.38%)(wild yak and domestic yak respectively, the same below), Bacteroidetes(26.00%, 26.16%) and Proteobacteria(3.48%, 1.52%) at the phylum level. Furthermore, Ruminococcaceae(55.18%, 58.48%), Bacteroidaceae(8.75%, 9.59%) and Lachnospiraceae(7.57%, 6.14%) at the family level; the domestic yak has the similar mainly composition with wild yak. SCFA concentration (including acetic acid, propionic acid, i-butyric acid, n-butyric acid and n-valeric acid) in wild yaks’ feces are significantly higher than in domestic yak (P<0.01). Spearman correlation relationship analysis shows that there is strong positive correlation between Porphyromonadaceae, Bacteroidaceae, Paraprevotellaceae, Rikenellaceae, Erysipelotrichaceae and SCFA concentration in wild yaks (r>0.4, P<0.05). However, there only has weak positive correlation in domestic yak’s microbes. Our result suggests that the digestion of grass in wild yaks is more efficient than in domestic yaks.
    Classification and distribution of Soricidae in Northeastern China
    LIU Zhu, ZHANG Junsheng, BAI Wei, LIU Huan, XIE Ruixue, YANG Xi, JIN Zhimin
    2019, 39(1):  8-26.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150120
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    We investigated Soricidae species in the Daxinganling Mountains (Huzhong, Tahe and Hulun Lake regions), the Xiaoxinganling Mountains (Luobei region) and the Changbaishan Mountains (Hengdaohezi, Sandaoguan, Mudanfeng, Phoenix Mountain and Xinbin regions). We collected 686 specimens of Soricidae. Morphological species identification was first performed using morphological characterization and morphometric measurements.  Phylogenetic trees and ABGD software were then used for species identification at the molecular level, based on the  cyt b gene complete sequence of mtDNA. Specimens comprise 2 species of Crocidura (C. lasiura and C. shantungensis) and 9 species of Sorex (S. mirabilis, S. caecutiens, S. isodon, S. tundrensis, S. unguiculatus, S. daphaenodon, S. gracillimus, S. roboratus and S. minutissimus). The distributions of C. lasiura and C. shantungensis were sympatric, and both representatives of Crocidura were distributed in closer proximity to human-occupied areas than were species of Sorex. The number of distributions of S. caecutiens, S. gracillimus and S. isodon was greater than the number of other species of Sorex. The number of distributions of S. mirabilis and S. roboratus were very low. S. tundrensis was captured only in the Hulun Lake region, and its distribution was sympatric with that of S. minutissimus. S. daphaenodon was captured only in the Daxinganling Mountains. We recorded external body measurements of specimens (body weight, head and body length, tail length, tail length/head and body length, hindfoot length and ear length) and cranial measurements (greatest length of skull, condyloincisive length, basal length, cranial breadth, height of the braincase, interorbital breadth, upper toothrow length, length of mandibular toothrow, anterior and posterior width of palate). The skull morphological features of 9 species of Sorex were photographed. The more obvious distinguishing features of each species were identified to establish a basis for morphological classification of Soricidae in Northeastern China.
    The classification of personality in captive alpine musk deer (Moschus chrysogaster sifanicus)
    SUN Taifu, WANG Jing, LI Yong, ZHOU Mi, MENG Xiuxiang
    2019, 39(1):  27-34.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150212
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    This study was carried out at Xinglongshan Musk Deer Farm located in the Xinglongshan National Nature Reserve, Gansu province. In July 2012 and August 2013 respectively, focusing on 374 captive musk deer (Moschus chrysogaster sifanicus), we conducted a survey using the personality rating method. The results showed that a personality scale of captive musk deer with 17 items could be established. Factor analysis showed that the common factor variances and loads of each item were all greater than 0.4, and the cumulative contribution rate of each factor was 60.33%, indicating that this scale had good construct validity. Furthermore, the Cronbach's alpha coefficient is 0.787, indicating that the scale has a high internal consistency reliability and the scale design is reasonable. The results of factor analysis and cluster analysis show that the personalities of captive musk deer can be divided into 5 major dimensions: Aggressiveness, Sociability, Stereotypy, Docility, Activity. The study found that there is a difference in personality between the captive musk deer and wild individuals, mainly due to the influence of captive conditions and human interference. The establishment of the captive musk deer personality scale and five personality dimensions has important practical value in guiding the management of musk deer breeding, which has filled the vacancy of personality research on Alpine musk deer and laid the foundation for further study on the personality of musk deer. In addition, the system of such research methods has good applicability and can provide a reference for early-stage research of other animals' personality.
    Time budget of captive alpine musk deer (Moschus chrysogaster sifanicus) fawns during lactation period
    WANG Mengyang, LI Yong, ZHOU Mi, SHENG Yan, MENG Xiuxiang
    2019, 39(1):  35-42. 
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    We examined the behavior of captive alpine musk deer (Moschus  chrysogaster berezovskii) fawns from July 17 to October 16, 2017 in Xinglong Mountain, Gansu Province. The study quantified and recorded ingestion, bedding, stereotypical, and 10 other types of behavior; analyzed the characteristics of time management change; and discussed the effects of gender, adult male alpine musk deer, and age. The results show that bedding down (39.55% ± 4.53%) and ingestion (28.03% ± 1.58%) by fawns accounted for the maximum proportion of time management. During the early nursing stage (1 months old), medium stage (2 months old), and later stage (3 months old), time of bedding, ingesting, and stereotypical behavior rose gradually; moving time (4.99% ± 0.64%) peaked at the medium stage, and mother–young contact time and other types of behavior declined gradually. Stereotypical behavior began at the medium stage, and increased in the later stage (3.33% ± 1.83%) , significantlyhigher than in the medium stage (1.15% ± 0.77%) (P < 0.05). The effects of age in other types of behavior were not remarkable (P > 0.05). The results show the correlation of some types of fawn behaviors: ingesting was positively correlated with urinating (r = 0.833, P = 0.010), mother–young contact was positively correlated with social behavior (r = 0.802, P = 0.017), and environment sniffing was positively correlated with social behavior (r = 0.970, P< 0.001). The bedding time of fawns with adult male alpine musk deer (59.50% ± 8.17%) was higher than that of other fawns (37.82% ± 6.12%), and the difference was statistically significant (P < 0.05). The mother–young contact time of fawns with adult male alpine musk deer (1.10% ± 0.52%) was lower than that of other fawns (3.80% ± 1.07%), and the difference was nearly significant (P > 0.05). The gender effect on all types of behavior categories of fawns was not significant (P > 0.05). The results of this study indicate that alpine musk deer are hiders, their stereotypical behavior begins in the young period, and the effect of age on stereotypical behavioral development is signifcant. There are correlations between some types of behaviors of fawns. Adult males have a negative effect on the growth and behavioral development of fawns. The effect of gender on the behavior category of fawns is not significant.
    Facial recognition of giant pandas based on developmental network recognition mode
    Houjin, Zheng Bochuan, LI Yujie, Bai Wenke, QI Guilan, Dong Junfei, Yang Zejing, Zhang Jindong
    2019, 39(1):  43-51.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150211
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    Individual identification is basis of animal behavior and ecology research, and is also important for the development of wildlife protection policies. In order to investigate new methods of giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) individual identification and population surveying, we photographed 18 giant pandas from Bifengxia giant panda base in Ya'an and the Chinese Giant Panda Garden in Gengda, Wenchuan County, Sichuan province in July 2017. We took high-quality facial photos of each giant panda 6 ~ 13 times for a total of 131 photographs. Using a developmental Network, we formulated a model for the facial recognition of the giant panda. We used the model to test photos which had some background features, with a successful individual recognition rate of 79.41%. We also tested photos in which the background was completely removed, which resulted in an individual recognition rate of 58.82%. This study shows that the developmental Network has adequate discriminatory ability for giant panda individual identification, and that the proportion of background features has severe influence on the actual results of the model. With the progress of the developmental network recognition model, we suggest that more wildlife researchers pursue this application of novel technology to conduct individual identification research of rare wildlife species such as the giant panda, gradually improve identification accuracies, and apply the model to large-scale wildlife investigations in key regions.
    Seasonal variation of daily activity patterns and diet of yellow-throated marten (Martes flavigula)
    ZHU Bowei, WANG Bin, RAN Jianghong, LI Bo, HUANG Feng, LI Xiaoqing, GU Xiaodong
    2019, 39(1):  52-61.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150178
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    From April 2016 to April 2017, seasonal variation of daily activity patterns and diet of yellow-throated martens (Martes flavigula) were studied using fecal analyses (frequency of occurrence and relative weight of remains) and Infrared Triggered Camera Technology in Liziping National Nature Reserve, Sichuan Province, China. We found that the activity of yellow-throated martens mainly occurred during the daytime, diurnal activity accounting for 85.64% of the total independent photographs. Pearson's chi-squared test showed that there was no significant difference in activity patterns of yellow-throated marten in different seasons (χ2=126.950, df=132, P=0.608). However, the peak time of activity patterns showed a certain difference among different seasons. The peak of the activity density occurred at 16:00-19:00 in spring (31.65%), 15:00-18:00 in summer (26.32%), 13:00-16:00 in autumn (34.31%), and 11:00-14:00 in winter (25.00%). In addition, there was more nocturnal activity in winter than that of the other three seasons. The content of yellow-throated marten feces could be classified into 4 groups: mammals, birds, insects and plants. Mammals(95.28% occurrence and 80.99% dry weight)were the major food of yellow-throated martens throughout the year. The food habits of yellow-throated martens varied in different seasons. Mammal remains in the feces appeared most frequently in spring, summer and autumn. Bird remains also appeared frequently in spring. The proportion of plants in the feces of yellow-throated martens was obviously increased in winter. Our results show that both daily activity patterns and diet of yellow-throated marten have certain differences in different seasons, which might be related to its seasonal breeding characteristics and physiological metabolism. These results are very helpful to a better understanding about the life history and survival strategy for yellow-throated martens, and provide a fundamental data and study for the protection of yellow-throated martens.
    Preliminary observation on the activity rhythm and time budget of the Asiatic brush-tailed porcupine (Atherurus macrourus) based on camera-trapping data
    WANG Guohai, SHI Zepan, LI Shengqiang, LU Changhu, ZHOU Qihai
    2019, 39(1):  62-68.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150164
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    Data on the activity rhythms and time budgets of Asiatic brush-tailed porcupines (Atherurus macrourus)were collected by camera traps between August 2012 and July 2013 in the 15-ha Forest Dynamics Plot and its surrounding area in Nonggang National Nature Reserve. We used a relative activity intensity index to explore the influences of moon phase and other environmental factors on the activity rhythms and time budgets of porcupines. Results showed that activity intensity varied significantly over the course of the day (t=4.666, df=23, P=0.001), with two activity peaks: one from 20:00-21:00 and one from 5:00-6:00. Moving (63.2%) and foraging (23.6%) were the main nocturnal activities. There were significant differences in monthly time budgets (t=8.581, df=11, P=0.001), and significant difference between the rainy season and dry season (Z=-2.166, P=0.03). There were also marked variations in activity frequencies of porcupines during different phases of the moon (χ2=5, df=1, P=0.025), with the highest activity during the new moon and full moon phases. There were significant negative correlations between monthly activity intensity and monthly rainfall,maximum temperature,and minimum temperature (R2=0.440、R2=0.435、R2= 0.457, respectively), and we found the optimal temperature to be between 10℃ and 26℃. This research provides preliminary data for the activity rhythms and time budgets of porcupines in Nonggang, and could help us to understand possible effects on their activity due to ongoing habitat modification and climate change in future research.
    Effects of vegetation cover and pastoral land-use types on the foraging and vigilance behaviors of the plateau pika
    Migmar Wangdwei
    2019, 39(1):  69-76.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150153
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    The natural behavior of wildlife can be different when livestock are present. The plateau pika (Ochotona curzoniae) is a burrowing lagomorph on the Tibetan Plateau that shares its habitat with livestock herded by pastoralists. I used focal animal sampling and Poisson regression to determine if the behavioral frequencies of free-ranging plateau pikas were affected by the presence of pastoralists and their yaks, as well as by land-use type. Results showed that frequencies of foraging and moving were the main behaviors of the plateau pikas.  In yak foraging areas, pikas foraged more frequently than they were vigilant in winter with reversed pattern in summer; and this occurred in both pastoral and bedding areas for domestic herbivores. Behavior frequencies displayed by plateau pikas were likely affected by pasture land-use type and vegetation cover, as well as by seasonal changes. Seasonal livestock grazing management is preferable to permanent human settlements on the Tibetan Plateau in terms of local overgrazing.
    Effects of plant quercetin on immune functions of Microtus fortis
    YE Qing, LI Junnian, YANG Dongmei, ZHANG Ying, LU Xin
    2019, 39(1):  77-83.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150199
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    To explore the relationship between plant secondary compounds and the immune functions of small mammal herbivores, this study measured the effects of plant quercetin on immune organ development and concentrations of several key cytokines of Microtus fortis fed diets containing 0, 1.5%, 3%, 5%, or 8% quercetin. The results showed that the indices of the spleen and the thymus of M. fortis fed 5% quercetin were increased by 14.48% (P < 0.05) and 11.67% (P < 0.05), respectively, and IL-2 and IL-10 were increased by 8.9% (P < 0.05) and 14.99% (P < 0.05), respectively; TNF-α and IL-1β were decreased by 11.13% (P < 0.05) and 17.40% (P < 0.05), respectively, when compared those of the control. When quercetin concentration reached 8%, the indexes of the spleen and the thymus were decreased, IL-2, and IL-10 secretions were suppressed, while TNF-α and IL-1β levels were increased. Dietary plant quercetin affected the immune organ development and cytokine secretion of M. fortis in a dose-dependent manner.
    Construction of mammary gland-specific expression vector for plateau pika(Ochotona curzoniae)Leptin gene and its expression in cells
    PANG Bo, YU Honghao, ZHANG Xuze, XIE Ling, FU Lin, ZHAO Xinquan, GUO Songchang
    2019, 39(1):  84-93.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150172
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    Leptin is one of the key factors regulating body energy homeostasis. Previous research showed that the plateau pika(Ochotona curzoniae)leptin gene has undergone adaptive evolution. Functional experiments revealed that pika leptin regulates energy homeostasis via reduced food intake and increased energy expenditure under both warm and cold conditions. Together, these findings suggest that leptin of the plateau pika has a potentially potent role in regulating adaptive thermogenesis. In this study, the 504bp open-reading frame of obese(ob)gene was amplified from the full-length pika leptin cDNA and then cloned into a mammary gland-specific expression vect- or pBC1(pBC1-lep). Meanwhile, we successfully established dairy goat mammary epithelial cell lines by primary tissue mass cell culture and transfected the modified pBC1-lep plasmid into the cultured cells with lipofectamine, and then screened for and successfully established positive cell lines transfected with leptin. These results provide a probable way for expression of the plateau pika leptin in goat mammary gland specifically by transgenic animal and complete the construction of the eukaryotic mammary gland-specific expression vector.
    Chemical analysis of leaves of Fargesia edulis and Fargesia dura fed on by black-and-white snub-nosed monkeys in Mt. Lasha, Yunnan, China
    LI Tu, LIU Lili, WANG Shuangjin, LI Qingqing, CHEN Fenfen, YANG Yajin, GUO Aiwei, CUI Liangwei
    2019, 39(1):  94-102.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150207
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    Bamboo is one of the main foods of black-and-white snub-nosed monkey (Rhinopithecus bieti). This study is designed to reveal principal chemical components of two bamboo leaves (Fargesia edulis and Fargesia dura), which influence their choice. We collected twenty-one samples of bamboos used by Rhinopithecus bieti at Mt. Lasha, Yunnan from March 2011 to February in 2012. The chemical composition (crude protein, ether extract, total sugar, crude fiber, ash, calcium and total phosphorus) of bamboo were determined from these samples. The results showed that choice of bamboo was mainly affected by higher percentage of calcium and gross energy, and lower ratio of calcium to phosphorus. Thus, the bamboo provides mineral elements required for the survival and reproduction of the monkeys, and is also an important food source of energy. Although there are no differences in the chemical compositions of the two kinds of bamboos, the main factors affecting their choice is different. This may be related to seasonal changes in their chemical compositions. Based on this and previous studies, Rhinopithecus biet prioritizes intake of phosphorus, calcium, and gross energy if macronutrients requirements for protein, ether extract, and others can be satisfied. Main food resources such as bamboo should be protected in the monkey's native habitat since it may be the preferred species of food resource recovery in its destroyed habitats in future.
    The application of microsatellite markers in giant panda research
    QIAO Maiju, RAN Jianghong, ZHANG Hemin
    2019, 39(1):  103-110.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150166
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    Among the rare animals in China, giant panda is one of the most successfully protected and studied species. In the late 1970s, with the help of radio collar, a breakthrough has been made in the ecological research of giant panda. In the past two decades, non-invasive genetic sampling technique, combining DNA profiling harnessing microsatellites achieved a great progress in the giant panda research. This paper reviews the application of giant panda microsatellite markers in paternity testing and breeding genetic optimization of captive population; in individual identification, population survey, genetic diversity assessment, population diffusion and genetic structure of the wild giant panda as well. In addition, 29 important markers were highlighted. In the end, the issue of standardization of giant panda microsatellite markers is addressed. Meanwhile, future research directions are suggested.