Table of Content

    30 September 2019, Volume 39 Issue 5
    Cold experience during lactation inhibits adult neurogenesis in Brandt’s voles (Lasiopodomys brandtii)
    ZHAO Yuanchun, ZHANG Xueying, WANG Dehua
    2019, 39(5):  485-495.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150311
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    Evidence has shown that environmental experiences during perinatal period play important roles in determining the behavior and metabolic physiology in adult mammals, especially the ambient temperature. The purpose of the present study was to test the hypothesis that the cold experience during lactation can have long-term effects on the metabolic physiology, behavioral performance and adult neurogenesis. The mother Brandt's voles (Lasiopodomys brandtii) together with their pups, on the day of parturition, were transferred to a warm room (23°C±1°C) or a cold room (4°C±1°C) until weaning (21 days), and then all animals were back to the warm room till 2 months old. Body mass, food intake, resting metabolic rate (RMR), cognitive ability, and neurogenesis in adulthood were measured. Our results showed that food intake, cell proliferation and cell survival of the brain decreased in the adult voles with cold experience during lactation compared to those with warm experience. When they were exposed to cold in adulthood, the voles with cold experience during lactation showed lower food intake, and lower frequency and duration of stay in the novel arm of Y-maze, but higher cell proliferation in the hippocampus and parts of hypothalamic areas, and higher cell survival in CA of hippocampus compared to those with warm experience during lactation. These data indicate that the cold experience during lactation has a long-lasting harmful effect on the energy metabolism, behavior and adult neurogenesis in Brandt's voles, but the voles with early cold experience will have better performance in metabolic capacity and neural plasticity in the brain regions related to metabolism and learning and memory when cold temperature comes again in later life.
    Cognitive behavior and neuroendocrine differences between male and female gerbils (Meriones meridianus)
    GONG Dajie, CAO Ruidong, ZHAO Haochi, ZHANG Mingyu, MIAO Fei, YU Peng
    2019, 39(5):  496-503.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150287
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    This research investigated the cognitive and neuroendocrine differences between male and female midday gerbils (Meriones meridianu) in novel object and social recognition test. Immunohidtochemistry method was used to detect the number of neurons involved in the synthesis of oxytocin (OT), vasopressin (AVP) and dopamine (DA). And the serum levels of OT and AVP were detected by enzyme-linked immuno sorbent assay (ELISA). The results showed that the time of exploring new objects both male and female gerbils was significantly higher than that of old objects, and the identification indexes were no significant difference between the male and female (P>0.05). The male gerbils decreased the exploring time to the repeated stimulus a with the increasing of exploring number, and the exploration time for strange stimulus b is significantly higher than that of the stimulus a (P <0.05); however, the female gerbils did not have such a performance. The number of OT neurons in the Paraventricular Nucleus (PVN) and Supraoptic Nucleus (SON) in males gerbils were significantly lower than these in females (P < 0.05) and the number of DA neurons in the Substantia Nigra (SN) (P <0.01) in males gerbils were significantly higher than these in females; however, the number of DA neurons in the Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA) in males were significantly lower than these in females (P <0.01). There was no significant different in serum OT and AVP levels between male and female gerbils. In summary, there was no significant difference in new object cognition between male and female gerbils, but the social cognition of male gerbils was stranger than that of female gerbils. On the neuroendocrine level, the number of OT neurons in PVN and SON as well as the number of DA neurons in SN and VTA showed gender differences between male and female midday gerbils.
    Investigation on the population of wild Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) in Medog, Tibet
    WANG Yuan, LIU Wulin, LIU Feng, LI Sheng, ZHU Xuelin, JIANG Zhigang, FENG Limin, LI Bingzhang
    2019, 39(5):  504-513.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150265
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    Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) used to be commonly distributed in Medog County, southeast Tibet, whereas no occurrence record has been reported across this area since 2002. In 2013—2018, we conducted field surveys in nine potential distribution areas of Bengal tigers in Medog using integrative approaches including camera-trapping, information network collection method and footprint identification method. The results suggested that there are only 1~3 non-resident individuals of Bengal tiger existing in Medog, occurring only during the dry season (October to March) in the south bank of the Yalu Zangbo River in the town of Beibeng, the south bank of the Yarlung Zangbo River in the Medog Town, and the south bank of the Jinzhu Zangbo in the Gedang Township. The prospects of the subsistence of wild Bengal tiger in Medog are not optimistic, subjected to various conditions and causes. Actions we proposed to conserve the wild tigers in this region include: (1) Conduct systematically designed basic monitoring on Bengal tigers and their prey;(2) Strengthen field patrolling and law enforcement against wildlife poaching; (3)Strengthen the protection of the intact forests; (4) Promote the livelihood and education of indigenous peoples to reduce their consumption of nature resources; (5) Develop landscape corridors for wild tigers to increase the habitat connectivity and facilitate their dispersal; (6) Strengthen cooperation on research and technical exchanges among different institutions and parties.
    The statistics and analysis of foraging plants species eaten by Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)in China
    JIANG Zhicheng, LI Zhengling, BAO Mingwei, CHEN Mingyong
    2019, 39(5):  514-530.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150237
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    To understand plants consumed by Asian elephants in China, we collated data from wild and captive Asian elephants (from the Xishuangbanna Center for Rescue and breeding of Asian Elephant). Methods: Wild elephants were surveyed using transects, for tracking, observing and searching traces of foraging and plant residues, captive elephants while self-feeding in the wild. Results: The result of our field surveys shows that the plants foraged by the Chinese Asian elephants included 111 species (77 genera of 42 families from 29 orders), among which 57 species were recorded for the first time as forage plant of the Asian elephant. Based on our field surveys and previous research, a new checklist of forage plants with 240 species (162 genera, 62 families, 32 orders) was proposed for the Asian elephants in China. The G-F index (0.84) reveals that the Chinese Asian envelopes have a diverse diet, including pteridophytes, gymnosperm, and angiosperms. Our analyses show the plants foraged by the captive Asian elephants in Xishuangbanna include 84 species. However, the captive Asian elephants in Xishuangbanna feed mainly on Gramineae (Saccharum spp., Zea mays, Digitaria spp., Pennisetum purpureum, and Thysanolaena
    latifolia); while the captive Asian elephants elsewhere in China (Beijing Zoo, Guangzhou Zoo and Kunming Zoo) are primarily fed with Sorghum species (S. bicolor, or S. sudanense). Thus wild elephant populations should have a more diverse diet. Discussion: Thus the restoration of wild Asian Elephant habitat protection should avoid crops and cash crops, and prioritise delicious, fast-growing, and high biomass indigenous plants, such as Musa acuminata, Thysanolaena latifolia, Caryota obtuse, Broussonetia papyrifera, Bischofia polycarpa, Macaranga denticulata, Digitaria spp., bamboo, and so on. To provide adequate food for wild Asian elephants, a variety of plants need to be grown according to different seasons of planting. For captive Asian elephants a diverse range of plants to feed on in addition to better conditions would greatly improve their quality of life.
    Activity of the captive forest musk deer(Moschus berezovskii) and its relationships with social affinity
    FANG Xuan, SUN Taifu, CAI Yonghua, DONG Xia, LI Yong, ZHOU Mi, MENG Xiuxiang
    2019, 39(5):  531-536.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150292
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    A combination of methods (e.g. scan sampling, focal sampling, all-occurrence recording methods), was used to collect behavioral information on 45 forest musk deer at Maerkang Musk Deer Breed Center, Sichuan Province of China. More specifically, we measured the frequency of non-resting behaviors and the intensity of affinitive behaviors. The aim of the study was to assess how gender, group size and social affinity influenced captive musk deer’s activity. The results show significant effect group size and social affinity on activity (P < 0.05), but not gender (P > 0.05) as the activity level of males did not differ from that of females. Indeed, we found that individuals were more active when in groups of smaller size (0.40 ± 0.022, n = 4) as compared to large size groups (0.25 ± 0.021, n = 32); and that activity level increased with social affinity (r = 0.390, P = 0.01), with highly active individuals holding highly social individuals. This study suggests that the individual difference in activity among groups of different in sizes may be used to carry out recommendations on change in herds’ structure and composition aimed at facilitating social cohesion and achieving more efficient management procedure in musk deer herds.
    Effects of disturbance of plateau pika(Ochotona curzoniae) on plant community in alpine meadow under grazing condition
    XU Hualei, WANG Xi, LIU Wei
    2019, 39(5):  537-545.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150238
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    In the alpine meadow ecosystem, Grazing is one of the important management methods, which plays a key role in the biodiversity. Plateau pika is an important component of the biodiversity in the alpine meadow ecosystem and plays a key role in the structure of the food network and its function and stability. The influence of plateau pika on the alpine meadow under the influence of grazing disturbance can be proved which provides a theoretical basis for the establishment of reasonable grazing in alpine meadows, and a scientific basis for the prevention and control of rodent pests with certain practical significance. From May to September 2017 in the meadow in Qilian County, Haibei Prefecture, Qinghai Province, we studied the effects of plateau pikas disturbance on the plant functional groups of alpine meadow functional groups under the control of grazing conditions. We found that the disturbance of plateau pika decreased the height of the most plant functional groups except forbs, and lightly increased the coverage of the forbs, but significantly decreased the coverage of functional groups of grasses, legume and total plants . However, we also found the disturbance of plateau pikas had no significant effect on the biomass and important value of plant functional group. Our results suggest that disturbance of the plateau pika has partly positive effect on the community characteristics of forbs, and inhibits the community characteristics of other functional groups under grazing conditions.
    Cloning of yak’s(Bos grunniensAtg5 and its expression in the main reproductive organs
    WANG Jinglei, PAN Yangyang, MA Rui, WANG Meng, CUI Yan, YU Sijiu
    2019, 39(5):  546-555.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150293
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    Autophagy is a conserved intracellular degradation process that has been shown to have important biological implications in a variety of organisms. However, the study of autophagy in the plateau characteristic species of Bosgrunniens has hasn't been reported. Therefore, in order to explore the expression of autophagy-related genes in the reproductive process of yak under normal physiological conditions, the main reproductive organs (fallopian tubes, ovaries and uterus) of different breeding cycles (follicular phase, luteal phase and pregnancy) of yak were collected. Autophagy related 5 (Atg5) gene was cloned ,and analyzed by bioinformatics; qRT- PCR was used to detect the relative expression of Atg5 gene in tissues; Western blotting (West-blot, WB) was used to detect the expression of Atg5 and Atg5-Atg12 complex in different tissues; immunohistochemical method was used to analyze the distribution characteristics of Atg5 in various reproductive organs. We successfully cloned the yak Atg5 gene (GenBank: MK531791), which was highly conserved during the evolution process, and the encoded protein was a soluble non-transmembrane protein. The results of qRT-PCR and WB showed Atg5 and Atg5-Atg12 complex is expressed in the main reproductive organs of calves. The expression of Atg5-Atg12 in the ovarian follicles during follicular phase was significantly higher than that in the luteal phase and gestational phase, while the expression of Atg5 in the follicular phase was significantly lower than that in the luteal phase and gestational phase. The
    expression of Atg5-Atg12 in the oviduct during luteal phase was significantly higher than that in the follicular phase and pregnancy. The expression of Atg5 in the fallopian tube during gestational phase was significantly higher than that in the follicular phase and the luteal phase. The expression of Atg5-Atg12 in the uterus during follicular phase and pregnancy was significantly higher than that in the luteal phase, while the expression of Atg5 in the uterus of the luteal phase is significantly higher than that during pregnancy and follicular phase. There was a negative correlation between the expression of Atg5 and Atg5-Atg12 at the protein level. Immunohistochemistry results showed that Atg5 was expressed in the oviductal mucosa epithelium, ovarian follicle membrane, granular layer, reproductive epithelium, luteal cells, endometrium and uterine gland. The results showed that autophagy was similar to other species in yak by detecting the expression of Atg 5 and Atg 12 in yak reproductive organs, and it was speculated that autophagy was involved in the regulation of yak reproductive physiology. The results of this study have implications for the study of autophagy in other large animals, specifically mammals in the alpine and hypoxic environment, and contribute to the study of autophagy involved in the reproductive physiology of other animals.
    Current research status on the origin of mirror neuron system in primates and its controversy
    ZHAO Zhu, CHEN Wei, WANG Yin
    2019, 39(5):  556-564.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150271
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    here are two different theoretical frameworks accounting for the origin of mirror neurons (MNs) in primates. According to the ‘genetic’ hypothesis, MNs’ matching response properties was acquired through natural selection and stored in the species’ genome. This ‘mirroring’ adaptation is evolutionarily selected to support a wide range of social functions so that individuals can use their own motor (or affect) representations to understand other’s actions (or emotions). In contrast, ‘associative’ theories argue that the mirroring mechanism comes from individual’s post-natal sensorimotor experience. Among the associative theories, associative sequence learning (ASL) hypothesis tries to elucidate the ontogeny of MNs with an extreme empiricism. By using a paradigm called S-R procedure, ASL hypothesis collected various empirical evidences and became the most influential associative theory. Although the evidence that MNs are malleable to sensorimotor experience can be well explained by ASL, it does not fully rule out the possibility that gene biases the development of MNs. In the history of evolution, it seems that MNs are most likely developed in those highly socialized animals lived in a socio-ecological niche required to communicate, cooperate and compete with inter-group members. In the early development of new-born primates, the brain responds differently to perceptual event with social significance (lipsmacking) than non-social one (tongue protrusion). Evidence suggests that these individual differences of brain responses to social action in early age can predict the later engagement of social interaction. Finally, the empirical evidence from ASL is primarily based on the stimulus-response compatibility paradigm, which is not ecological valid to test the emergence of MNs. Thus, the ontogeny of MNs is still in debate and requires further clarification.
    Camera trap survey on the diversity of mammals and birds in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province
    LI Weidong, HU Kaijin, ZENG Yilong, XU Rongshuang, ZHANG Peng
    2019, 39(5):  565-574.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150261
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    As a newly developed mega-city, the biodiversity of Shenzhen suffer the influence from urbanization in a shorter period than which of traditional mega-cities. However, there is a few comprehensive survey for the biological resources in this city. In order to discover the current situation of animals, we set up 57 camera traps in Shenzhen from April 27th, 2014 to April 5th, 2015. Based on the survey effort of 3780 camera-trap days and 607 independent valid photos, we found 8 species of mammals belonging to 3 orders and 6 families, and 26 species of birds belonging to 3 orders, 9 families, including a second-class state protected species Centropus sinensis, and 24 species listed in the National Protection of Beneficial or Important Economic and Scientific Research Value of Terrestrial Wildlife. Except for mice, there are also some species with high Relative Abundance Index like Turdus hortulorum, Sus scrofa, Zoothera citrina, Turdus cardis. And we found that the daily activity pattern of wild animals in metropolitan area is different to which in natural reserves. This study would provide a new ideal and a new method for further research and protection of animal resources of Shenzhen.
    Camera-trapping survey of mammals and birds in southern section of eastern slope in Taihang Mountains, Hebei Province
    CHEN Xiangyang, FAN Jungong, WANG Penghua, WANG Yihong, HOU Jianhua
    2019, 39(5):  575-584.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150257
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    Mammals and birds in southern section of eastern slope in Taihang Mountains, Hebei, were surveyed using the camera-trapping method during the winter 2017. A total of 78 trapping cameras were installed in the four systematic field sampling sites, with 4,753 camera-days and 1,903 effective photos being obtained. Seven mammal species belonging to 4 orders and 7 families and 27 bird species belonging to 9 orders and 14 families were identified, among which 4 species are State Key Protected Animals in Class-II, namely Koklass Pheasant (Pucrasia macrolopha), Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus), Himalayan Owl (Strix aluco) and Eurasian Hobby (Falco subbuteo). Based on the relative abundance index (RAI), Rock Squirrels (Sciurotamias davidianus) (10.10) and Red-billed Magpies (Urocissa erythroryncha) (5.49) were ranked as the top two most abundant species. Daily activity rhythm of the six common mammal species was recorded, with Wild Boar (Sus scrofa) and Cape Hare (Lepus tolai) being mainly active in the early morning and evening, Roe Deer (Capreolus pygargus) and Rock Squirrel being nocturnal animals, and Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) and Siberian Weasel (Mustela sibirica) being active throughout the day. Tumen-
    Huangbeiping and Lutou had more species (24 and 23 species, respectively) and higher Shannon-Weiner index (2.35 and 2.06, respectively) than the other sites. The region has a high degree of agricultural development, a large degree of fragmentation of forest landscapes, and is heavily disturbed by human activities. The protection and restoration of wildlife habitats should be strengthened.
    Chinese Babax (Babax lanceolatus) was predated by a wild Rhinopithecus roxellana in Shennongjia National Park, China
    ZHU Zunyan, HUANG Tianpeng, YAO Hui, YANG Wanji, XIANG Zuofu
    2019, 39(5):  585-589.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150278
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    Many reports have described that non-human primates capture and consume vertebrate prey. However, the colobinae monkeys with more strict phytophagous diet rarely prey on vertebrates. We recorded an adult female Rhinopithecus roxellana preyed on three Chinese Babax’s (Babax lanceolatus) chicks from a nest in Shennongjia National Park on Sept. 7, 2018. The monkey killed all the three chicks by biting off their heads while feeding on them. In this case, multiple individuals, most were female juveniles, were involved in watching the process of predation and actively explored the inside of the nest. The significance of this case is not only to further understand the feeding habits of R. roxellana, but also to accumulate basic data for exploring the behavioral mechanism of primate’s carnivority.
    Blood physiological parameters of captive Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica)
    HAN Zhiqiang, WANG Haijun, Liu Cunfa, WANG Xiaoxu, ZHAO Quanmin, XU Chao
    2019, 39(5):  590-594.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150241
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    In this study, the blood physiological parameters of 26 captive Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) were measured by a blood cell analyser, and the differences in the physiological parameters, vital statistics, and platelet-related parameters and their effects between male and female individuals were compared. The results indicate that the differences in physiological parameters between male and female individuals is not noticeable(P>0.05). And list some platelet-related parameters, PLT (211.15±59.77)×109/L, PCT(0.26±0.09)%, MPV (12.65±0.88) fL, PDW (22.28±1.68) fL, P-LCR (44.56±8.03) %。The measurement of blood physiological parameters appears to be of great help in the diagnosis, and subsequent treatment, of diseases in Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), and the measurement of platelet-related parameters is important in standardizing the blood physiological parameters of this species.
    Discovery of Gongshan Muntjac (Muntiacus gongshanensis) in Tengchong, Yunnan Province
    HUANG Xiangyuan, ZHANG Xingchao, Chan Pui Lok Bosco, Li Fei
    2019, 39(5):  595-598.  DOI: 10.16829/j.slxb.150252
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    The Gongshan Muntjac (Muntiacus gongshanensis) is an enigmatic deer species, and little is known about its taxonomy, distribution and status. We conducted a camera-trapping survey in the Tengchong Section of Gaoligongshan National Nature Reserve, Yunnan Province, and obtained images of the species in May 2018. This is a new mammal record for Tengchong County and represents the southernmost global distribution of this species. We illustrated wild-living M. gongshanensis from Tengchong for the first time and provided diagnostic features of the species.