Certain Behavioral Traits of Small Mammals in Abnormal Social Environment

  • S. A. Shilova
  • D. P. Orlenev


In a social vacuum following a catastrophic decline in population density of small mammals, species-specific adaptive behavioral mechanisms optimizing reconstitution of the spatial and social structure are manifested to a different extent in different species. At the same time, the rate of structure and population recovery depends on specific social organization of a species. The field observation data on the behavior of three species, Pallas' pika as well as Mongolian and midday gerbils, in an experimentally depleted population are presented. Mongolian gerbil living in family groups demonstrated developed adaptive mechanisms of this kind in contrast to two other species with pronounced individual territorialism.


Population Density Social Organization Field Observation Social Environment Small Mammal 
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© MAIK “Nauka/Interperiodica” 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. A. Shilova
    • 1
  • D. P. Orlenev
    • 1
  1. 1.Severtsov Institute of Ecology and EvolutionRussian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia

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