Ground Report | New Delhi: Asian male elephants; As the human-elephant conflict has increased over time, it has become very important to understand the social behavior of elephants. Elephants are generally considered to be quite social. The study of their behavior becomes important for the conservation and management of endangered Asian elephants.
Asian male elephants
The Asian elephant is a charismatic species with a long history of living with humans. Based on long-term observation, it has been found that the work of male wild elephants is unique.
Now researchers from the Jawaharlal Nehru Center for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, have collected and analyzed data on the behavior of Asian elephants. Data on Asian elephants were collected from Nagarhole and Bandipur National Parks.
They found that the time spent by male Asian elephants in all-male and mixed male and female groups depended on the age of the male. Adult Asian male elephants prefer to spend their time alone than male-female or all-male groups. In addition, older elephants were found mostly with mates of their age and less frequently with young male elephants aged 15 to 30 years. Furthermore, the association of younger men with older men was not found.
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Male elephants less social than females
Adult male Asian elephants are less social than females. They are 30 years old or older when an elephant molts or enters, with males at this age looking for a mate annually. It should be noted here that masturbation for male elephants is a condition characterized by highly aggressive behavior and a large increase in reproductive hormones.
The researchers hypothesized that when adult males are molested or entered into, their influence may result in multiple matings. Therefore, maintaining dominance using each other’s strengths may be more important for adult males than for younger males.
On the other hand, since young male elephants mate with females when they do not have a large increase in their reproductive hormones (when they are molting), they mate with females. are capable of having sex. When they don’t have a large increase in reproductive hormones. When there is no increase in reproductive hormones (when they are not molested) they can use that time to look for mating opportunities.
The team of researchers identified male elephants using the characteristics of their ears, tails, and teeth and ascertained whether males are attached to each other in the presence or absence of females. They used six years of field data on 83 identified male elephants for the study, which is published in the journal Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution.
Examines male associations
They looked at two possible reasons for not having an increase in reproductive hormones in groups of men (when they weren’t tamed). Males may use their time to fight males of similar age, who are of similar size. To decide your dominance relations. Young males may also use their groups. Young males learn about food-finding and breeding behavior from older male elephants.
Their results showed that the group of all-male elephants was smaller in the absence of females. According to the team, social learning from older men did not appear to play a large role in male groups. In contrast, all males of African savanna elephants spend more time in groups and form larger groups, and young male elephants prefer to mate with larger male elephants.
This study is one of the few that examines male associations in species in which males rove between social groups. It provides an example of how ecological differences could possibly drive differences in male societies in related species with similar male reproductive strategies.