Animals

The Living Elephants: Evolutionary Ecology, Behaviour, and by Raman Sukumar

By Raman Sukumar

The dwelling Elephants is the authoritative source for info on either Asian and African elephants. From the traditional origins of the proboscideans to the present-day hindrance of the dwelling elephants, this quantity synthesizes the habit, ecology and conservation of elephants, whereas protecting additionally the historical past of human interactions with elephants, all in the theoretical framework of evolutionary biology. The e-book starts off with a survey of the 60-million 12 months evolutionary heritage of the proboscideans emphasizing the function of weather and plants swap in giving upward thrust to a bewildering array of species, but additionally discussing the potential position of people within the overdue Pleistocene extinction of mastodonts and mammoths. the newest details at the molecular genetics of African and Asian elephants and its taxonomic implications are then offered. the increase of the elephant tradition in Asia, and its early death in Africa are traced besides an unique interpretation of this specific animal-human dating. The e-book then strikes directly to the social lifetime of elephants because it pertains to reproductive options of men and women, improvement of habit in younger, verbal exchange, ranging styles, and societal association. The foraging ideas of elephants, their impression at the plants and panorama are then mentioned. The dynamics of elephant populations in terms of attempting to find ivory and their inhabitants viability are defined because of mathematical types. a close account of elephant-human interactions features a therapy of crop depredation by means of elephants in terms of their average ecology, manslaughter via elephants, habitat manipulation by means of people, and a heritage of the ivory exchange and poaching within the continents. The ecological info is introduced jointly within the ultimate bankruptcy to formulate a suite of pragmatic ideas for the long term conservation of elephants. The broadest remedy of the topic but undertaken, by means of one of many major staff within the box, Raman Sukumar, the booklet delivers to deliver the knowledge of elephants to a brand new point. it may be of curiosity not just to biologists but in addition a broader viewers together with box ecologists, natural world directors, historians, conservationists and all these attracted to elephants and their destiny.

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2). Changes in individual molar characters, such as the number of lamellar plates, enamel thickness, and crown height, among the three genera reflect not only the differences in evolutionary rates, but also the nature of adaptive responses to changing ecological conditions encountered (fig. 7). It is clear that, in all these characters, the rates of change were much greater in Mammuthus and Elephas than in Loxodonta, especially from about 3 My ago. The noted evolutionary biologist J. B. S. Haldane suggested the use of a unit, the darwin, to depict the rate of evolutionary change.

Interestingly, the island rule is reversed for small mammals such as rodents, for which gigantism is favored under insular conditions. 2 Evolutionary rates in the elephants The rates of evolution can be measured in many different ways. Among the elephants (including mammoths), the rate of change of teeth characters has been quantified in detail by Vincent Maglio. Over the first 2 My after their emergence in Africa, all three genera—Loxodonta, Mammuthus, and Elephas— did not differ much in their rates of molar evolution.

8 m (6 feet). Over a 5,000-year period, or about 100 mammoth life spans, the height of the species was reduced by over 40% and there was an even greater reduction in body mass, an extremely rapid evolutionary transition, if not as extreme as that of the Mediterranean and the Southeast Asian species. Several explanations are possible for this dwarfing of elephantids on islands. Often, an island has not been colonized by a large predator or is too small to hold a viable predator population. Once it is free from predation pressure, large body size is not of much advantage to a herbivore.

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