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About this book
About this book
This is a comparative study of the brown and spotted hyaenas in the semi arid region of the Kalahari. In it, the author examines the roles of the two species in this finely balanced ecosystem, and highlights the mechanisms responsible for limiting the populations.
Part 1 Feeding ecology: food availability; brown hyaena diet; spotted hyaena diet; diets of the other large carnivores and ecological separation of the predators; the impact of predation on the prey populations; relations between hyaenas and other carnivorous animals. Part 2 Comparative foraging and feeding behaviour: activity patterns and resting sites; foraging group sizes; the use of senses during foraging; foraging for vegetable matter, birds' eggs and insects; brown hyaena hunting behaviour; spooted hyaena hunting behaviour; feeding behaviour. Part 3 Social structure and spatial organization: brown hyaena clans; spotted hyaena clans; nomadic males; land tenure system; factors affecting the sizes of social groups and territories. Part 4 Communication patterns and social interactions: visual and tactile communications and social interactions; vocalizations; scent marking. Part 5 The comparative denning behaviour and development of cubs: dens; development of cubs; sub-adults; functional considerations of denning behaviour in the Hyaenidae. Part 6 The individual in hyaena society: degrees of relatedness between clan members; brown hyaena society; spotted hyaena society; evolutionary trands in the social systems of the two species. Part 7 Relations between, and management considerations for, brown hyaenas and spotted hyaenas. Appendices: 1 - common and scientific names of species mentioned in the text; 2 - estimated numbers of some ungulates in the spotted hyaena study area; 3 - ageing criteria of ungulates based on eruption of teeth in bottom jaws and tooth wear; 4 - methods used to measure territory sizes; 5 - degrees of relatedness between clan members.