To shed light on the family bonds and behavior of Loxodonta africana in human care, their olfactory abilities, greeting behavior, holding systems in zoos, and in situ and ex situ living calves were investigated.(I) Olfactory long-term memory and elephants means to express family bonds by olfaction were examined with an olfactory test. Two zoo-housed mother-daughter pairs were presented with fecal samples of their separated relatives and control samples of an unknown elephant and a known elephant.(II) Greeting behavior and species-specific social behavior of Loxodonta africana housed in zoos were investigated during the reunifications of the two mother-daughter pairs and compared to two unifications of unrelated elephants.(III) African elephant calves behavior and mother-child bond were investigated in four European zoos for the three holding systems free contact, protected contact, and no contact.(IV) For further investigations of zoo-born African elephant calves species-specific social behavior and bonds, the behavior and the mother-child bond were investigated for calves of the F1 and F2 generation ex situ and calves in situ.The investigations give ambiguous results regarding zoo elephants' social bonds and behavior. (I) and (II) indicate close family bonds and species-specific behavior in zoo-housed females of the study. (III) and (IV) found significant differences in the zoo-housed calves' family bonds and social behavior compared to their wild-living conspecifics. The detected differences seem reasonable considering zoos' different environments and lack of threats. The results of the adult females in (I) and (II) indicate that the differences in social bonds and behavior of the calves in (III) and (IV) will not manifest when those animals grow up and will not have a significant impact long-term. Nevertheless, to prevent increases in behavioral differences in ex situ elephants, elephants should be handled as close to natural conditions as possible.
- TitleThe importance of family bonds and their impact on social behavior of African Elephants : an analysis of 'Loxodonta africanas' olfaction, greeting behavior, holding systems, and 'in situ' vs. 'ex situ' living calves / vorgelegt von Franziska Gertrud Frederike Hörner
- Translated titleDie Relevanz von Familienbunden und ihr Einfluss auf das Sozialverhalten Afrikanischer Elefanten : eine Analyse von 'Loxodonta africanas' Geruchssinn, Begrüßungsverhalten, Haltungsformen und 'in situ' vs. 'ex situ' lebenden Kälbern
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- Description1 Online-Ressource (VIII, 158 Seiten) : Illustrationen, Diagramme, Karte
- Institutional NoteBergische Universität Wuppertal, Dissertation, 2023
- AnnotationTag der Verteidigung: 26.10.2023
- Defended on2023-10-26
- LanguageEnglish ; German
- Document typeDissertation (PhD)
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