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Daily and circadian rhythms of rest and activity ofTalpa romana Thomas (Mammalia, Insectivora: Talpidae). Preliminary results

Ritmi giornalieri e circadiani di attività/riposo inTalpa romana Thomas (Mammalia, Insectivora: Talpidae). Risultati preliminari

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Abstract

Daily and circadian rhythms of rest and activity were investigated on six adult moles (Talpa romana). Preliminary results from a seven months study are presented. Animals were housed in separate cages and their activity monitored by means of automatic recording. Two sessions of automatic recording were run in different captive conditions and photoperiod regimes (natural light/dark conditions and constant dark). As a general rule, all activities showed a link with photoperiod under LD conditions. All animals displayed a clear diurnality in spite of strong interindividual differences in their activity pattern. In constant dark, two moles out of three showed a marked loss of organization in their activity pattern and absence of a clear circadian rhythmicity. Despite the absence of exposition to the natural LD cycle in subterranean environment, preliminary results suggest that light is likely to maintain a role in the regulation of activity patterns also in this fossorial species.

Riassunto

Vengono presentati i risultati di sette mesi di studio sui ritmi di attività circadiani e giornalieri indagati in cattività con l’uso di rilevatori automatici collegati alle gabbie. Il lavoro è stato svolto in due fasi di cui la prima in condizioni di luce/buio naturale e la seconda con animali mantenuti in condizioni di buio, umidità e temperatura costanti. I risultati confermano il modello polifasico di attività riscontrato in natura, sia in condizioni di cattività con fotoperiodo naturale che in condizioni costanti. È stata anche evidenziata una notevole variabilità interindividuale, sia per quanto riguarda la quantità di attività totale che la strutturazione del ritmo. L’attività di tutti gli animali sottoposti al ciclo luce/buio ha mostrato un chiaro legame con il fotoperiodo e tutti gli animali sono apparsi nettamente diurni. In condizioni di buio costante due talpe su tre hanno mostrato un pattern di attività disorganizzato e assenza di una chiara ritmicità circadiana. Nonostante la scarsa esposizione al ciclo luce-buio a cui sono sottoposte le talpe in condizioni naturali, questi risultati preliminari suggeriscono che la luce rappresenti ancora un importante fattore di regolazione dei ritmi di attività di questi mammiferi fossori.

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Correspondence to Cristiano Bertolucci.

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Nella seduta del 23 aprile 1999.

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Bertolucci, C., Borroni, A. & Loy, A. Daily and circadian rhythms of rest and activity ofTalpa romana Thomas (Mammalia, Insectivora: Talpidae). Preliminary results. Rend. Fis. Acc. Lincei 10, 89–99 (1999). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02904384

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02904384

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