Here, I will be adding publications and links to external blogs related to our bat-eared fox research. As my research group is also starting to investigate black-backed jackal behaviour in Golden Gate Highlands National Park, you will soon also start reading about other canids on this page!
In 2016, we produced a few papers related to batty hormones and parental care.
- In a rather exciting short communication, MSc student PJ Jacobs (now graduated, with distinction) detailed how far a mother fox would go to ensure that she has enough energy to feed her youngsters — she would attack and kill an animal as big as she is! The citation information is:
Jacobs, P.J. & le Roux, A. 2016. First report of a myrmecophageous bat-eared fox (Otocyon megalotis) hunting a hare (Lepus sp.). African Journal of Ecology 54(1): 128- 130.
- My PhD student Ruan de Bruin wrote a review paper on paternal care behaviour in carnivores, and how little we know about the hormones that regulate caring in males. The citation information is:
De Bruin, R., Ganswindt, A., & le Roux, A. 2016. From killer to carer: Steroid hormones and paternal behaviour. African Zoology 51(4): 173-182. DOI: abs/10.1080/15627020.2016.1258327
- And finally, with a number of colleagues, we also validated new techniques for extracting hormones from bat-eared fox fecal matter, and tested this method on three different populations. This short paper demonstrated that disruptions to foxes’ social housing/ conditions certainly lead to (at least short term) increased stress levels. This cortisol assay will now be used by at least two of my students, to investigate seasonal changes in bat-eared fox hormones. The citation information is:
le Roux, A., Botha, H., Dalerum, F. & Ganswindt, A. 2016. Non-invasive measurement of adrenocortical activity in a myrmecophageous mammal, the bat-eared fox. African Zoology 51(1): 47-51.
Well… this was a year of data collection and (new) parenting behaviour by the Principal Investigator…
- We published a paper on parenting behaviour in wild bat-eared foxes, showing some very novel behaviour in dads. Who knew that feeding your child dung could be a good idea…? The citation information is:
le Roux, A., R. Beishuizen, W. Brekelmans, A. Ganswindt, M. Paris, F. Dalerum. 2014. Innovative paternal care in the bat-eared fox. Acta Ethologica 17(1): 63-66. DOI: 10.1007/s10211-013-0157-1