Scrape-marking behavior of jaguars (Panthera onca) and pumas (Puma concolor)

Harmsen, Bart J., Foster, Rebecca J., Gutierrez, Said M., Silverio, Y. Marin and Doncaster, C. Patrick (2010) Scrape-marking behavior of jaguars (Panthera onca) and pumas (Puma concolor). Journal of Mammalogy, 91, (5), 1225-1234. (doi:10.1644/09-MAMM-A-416.1).


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Marking behaviors of jaguars (Panthera onca) and pumas (Puma concolor) were investigated by linking sign from transect surveys to species, sex, and individual detected by camera traps along trails in the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize. The most commonly encountered big-cat signs were scrape marks. These were produced by cats raking the ground with their feet. Scrapes were associated more strongly with presence of male pumas than with female pumas or jaguars of either sex. Scats found in scrapes were genotyped to species level and indicated that jaguars produced larger scrapes than pumas and that pumas were more likely to scrape with their hind feet than with front feet. Scrapes were spatially clustered along trails, indicating that individuals scrape in response to other scrapes in the same area. High scraping frequencies were not associated with the presence of specific individuals, suggesting that scrape-marking behavior does not signal dominance in this area.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1644/09-MAMM-A-416.1
ISSNs: 0022-2372 (print)
1545-1542 (electronic)
Keywords: camera trapping, communication, jaguars, marking, pumas, scats, scrapes, sympatric, territoriality
Subjects: Q Science > QL Zoology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Biological Sciences
ePrint ID: 166873
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2010 10:05
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 13:30

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