Utilization pattern of latrines by raccoon dogs,Nyctereutes procyonoides viverrinus, was studied on a small island in western Kyushu, Japan. Seventy-eight latrines were spread over the study areas, these were mainly formed on the flat surface in woody areas. Although the site and number of latrines were fairly stable throughout the year, distribution of the utilized latrines and number of scats per latrine were changed seasonally. Latrines were grouped into several clusters and communal utilization of latrines by several animals was observed within the cluster. Seasonal changes of utilization pattern observed in communal utilization rate and cluster formation was assumed to be caused by the changing of the social unit of raccoon dogs. Familiarization within the home range and information site to conspecifics may be concluded as the function of latrines.
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Ikeda, H. Raccoon dog scent marking by scats and its significance in social behaviour. J. Ethol. 2, 77–84 (1984). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02430571