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The foraging ecology of dhole (Cuon alpinus) in Mudumalai Sanctuary, southern India

Venkataraman, Arun B and Arumugam, R and Sukumar, R (1995) The foraging ecology of dhole (Cuon alpinus) in Mudumalai Sanctuary, southern India. In: Journal of Zoology, 237 (part 4). pp. 543-561.

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Official URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1469-...


Two dhole (Cuon alpinus) packs were monitored in Mudumalai Sanctuary, southern India, during 1989-93 to look at population dynamics, movement pattern, and foraging strategy and their inter-relationship with the maintenance of social groups. Pack size fluctuated substantially (4-18 and 4-25 in the two packs) owing to dispersal and demographic factors such as females not breeding in a given year. Both packs killed a much higher proportion of chital (Axis axis) and sambar (Cervus unicolor) fawns (< one year old) than their availability in the population. There was no correlation between pack size and body weight of prey killed, while per capita consumption of meat declined with increasing pack size. Home-range area (83.3 km(2) and 54.2 km(2) for the two packs) was not correlated with pack size. Pack movement from one resource patch (consisting of resting sites and aggregations of prey species) to another was not random or based on factors such as inter-patch distance or relative prey densities. There was no difference in mean residence time of the pack across the four resource patches; the pack moved across these in a sequential manner in one direction. We conclude that dholes live in groups not because of any advantages accruing from enhanced group sizes through increased per capita yield of food, but as a consequence of the dispersion of resources.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of Zoology
Publisher: John Wiley and Sons
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to John Wiley and Sons.
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 27 May 2011 05:17
Last Modified: 27 May 2011 05:17
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/37960

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