UZH-Logo

Secretions of the interaural gland contain information about individuality and colony membership in the Bechstein’s bat.


Safi, K; Kerth, G (2003). Secretions of the interaural gland contain information about individuality and colony membership in the Bechstein’s bat. Animal Behaviour, 65(2):363-369.

Abstract

Mammals use chemical signals for individual and kin recognition, to establish social hierarchies, mark territories and choose mates. The nocturnal and social lifestyle of bats suggests that, besides acoustic signals, they also use scent to communicate. We investigated in the communally breeding Bechstein’s bat, Myotis bechsteinii, whether secretions of the facial interaural gland contain information that can be used for individual and colony recognition. Since female Bechstein’s bats live in closed societies and show cooperative behaviour, we predicted they would recognize colony members. We analysed interaural gland secretions, which we repeatedly sampled from 85 females belonging to four free-ranging colonies. Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry profiles were individually specific and differed between colonies.
Comparing odour profiles between colonies we found a relation between chemical similarity and the mitochondrial haplotype of colony members. Within colonies there was no correlation between mass spectrometer profile similarity and genetic relatedness. Our results suggest that female Bechstein’s bats may use interaural gland secretions for individual and colony recognition but not to infer kinship directly.

Mammals use chemical signals for individual and kin recognition, to establish social hierarchies, mark territories and choose mates. The nocturnal and social lifestyle of bats suggests that, besides acoustic signals, they also use scent to communicate. We investigated in the communally breeding Bechstein’s bat, Myotis bechsteinii, whether secretions of the facial interaural gland contain information that can be used for individual and colony recognition. Since female Bechstein’s bats live in closed societies and show cooperative behaviour, we predicted they would recognize colony members. We analysed interaural gland secretions, which we repeatedly sampled from 85 females belonging to four free-ranging colonies. Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry profiles were individually specific and differed between colonies.
Comparing odour profiles between colonies we found a relation between chemical similarity and the mitochondrial haplotype of colony members. Within colonies there was no correlation between mass spectrometer profile similarity and genetic relatedness. Our results suggest that female Bechstein’s bats may use interaural gland secretions for individual and colony recognition but not to infer kinship directly.

Citations

56 citations in Web of Science®
61 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

73 downloads since deposited on 11 Feb 2008
18 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Language:English
Date:2003
Deposited On:11 Feb 2008 12:16
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:14
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0003-3472
Publisher DOI:10.1006/anbe.2003.2067
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-579

Download

[img]
Preview
Content: Accepted Version
Filetype: PDF
Size: 161kB
View at publisher

TrendTerms

TrendTerms displays relevant terms of the abstract of this publication and related documents on a map. The terms and their relations were extracted from ZORA using word statistics. Their timelines are taken from ZORA as well. The bubble size of a term is proportional to the number of documents where the term occurs. Red, orange, yellow and green colors are used for terms that occur in the current document; red indicates high interlinkedness of a term with other terms, orange, yellow and green decreasing interlinkedness. Blue is used for terms that have a relation with the terms in this document, but occur in other documents.
You can navigate and zoom the map. Mouse-hovering a term displays its timeline, clicking it yields the associated documents.

Author Collaborations