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Tilson, R.L. and Hamilton, W.J. 1984. Social dominance and feeding patterns of spotted hyaenas. Animal Behaviour, 32(3): 715–724


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Social dominance and feeding patterns of spotted hyaenas.

Summary / Notes:

In some parts of East Africa, spotted hyaenas (Crocuta crocuta) live in large groups and at high population densities, and scramble competition among clan members during feeding at large carcasses is reported. By contrast, spotted hyaenas in the Namib Desert of southwestern Africa live in small groups and at low densities. When assembled at carcasses, Namib Desert spotted hyaenas show linear dominance hierarchies. Adult females outrank adult males and usually feed one at a time or with their dependent offspring. Feeding rates at small carcasses in the Namib Desert are approximately equal to those reported in East Africa, but at large carcasses Namib Desert spotted hyaenas show linear dominance hierarchies. Adult females outrank adult males and usually feed one at a time or with their dependent offspring. Feeding rates at small carcasses in the Namib Desert are approximately equal to those reported in East Africa, but at large carcasses Namib Desert spotted hyaenas feed significantly more slowly. Thus lower-ranking individuals eventually gain access to large carcasses but are excluded from smaller ones. We relate these patterns of food consumption to possible evolutionary pathways to social hunting by spotted hyaenas.

Year: 1984

Type: Journal Article

URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003347284801475


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Tilson, R.L. and Hamilton, W.J. 1984. Social dominance and feeding patterns of spotted hyaenas. Animal Behaviour, 32(3): 715–724
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