• An experimental investigation of chemical communication in the polar bear

      Owen, Megan A.; Swaisgood, Ronald R.; Slocomb, C.; Amstrup, Steven C.; Durner, G. M.; Simac, Kristin S.; Pessier, Allan P. (2015)
      The polar bear (Ursus maritimus), with its wide-ranging movements, solitary existence and seasonal reproduction, is expected to favor chemosignaling over other communication modalities….These results suggest that pedal scent, regardless of origin, conveys information to conspecifics that may facilitate social and reproductive behavior, and that chemical communication in this species has been adaptively shaped by environmental constraints of its habitat. However, continuously distributed scent signals necessary for breeding behavior may prove less effective if current and future environmental conditions cause disruption of scent trails due to increased fracturing of sea ice.
    • Ecological context influences scent-marking behavior in the giant panda

      Zhou, W.; Nie, Y.; Swaisgood, Ronald R.; Li, Y.; Liu, D.; Wei, F. (2019)
      Signal detection theory predicts that animals should select scent-marking sites in a way that maximizes their probability of detection by target receivers. Many studies have been conducted with a focus on signaling behavior and function....
    • Rub-tree selection by Andean bears in the Peruvian dry forest

      Kleiner, Jack D.; Van Horn, Russell C.; Swenson, Jon E.; Steyaert, Sam M.J.G. (2018)
      To advance our knowledge on the rubbing behavior of Andean bears (Tremarctos ornatus), we assessed characteristics of their rub-trees in the Peruvian tropical dry forest, where water is a rare and critical resource. We registered characteristics of rubbed and unrubbed trees and shrubs along bear trails in an area of approximately 100 km2 surrounding 7 waterholes in the western Andes foothills of Peru during austral summer 2014–2015....
    • Seasonal and reproductive variation in chemical constituents of scent signals in wild giant pandas

      Zhou, Wenliang; Nie, Yonggang; Hu, Yibo; Swaisgood, Ronald R.; Zhang, Yaohua; Liu, Dingzhen; Wei, Fuwen (2019)
      Seasonally reproducing animals show many behavioral and physiological changes during the mating period, including increased signaling for intrasexual competition and mate attraction. We collected 102 anogenital gland secretions (AGS) from marking trees in Foping Nature Reserve, and used gas chromatography mass spectrometry analyze these chemical composition....