The effect of environmental variables on the activity patterns of the southern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons) in captivity: Onset, duration and cessation of activity

Hogan, Lindsay A., Johnston, Steve D., Lisle, Allan T., Horsup, Alan B., Janssen, Tina and Phillips, Clive J. C. (2011) The effect of environmental variables on the activity patterns of the southern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons) in captivity: Onset, duration and cessation of activity. Australian Journal of Zoology, 59 1: 35-41. doi:10.1071/ZO11006


Author Hogan, Lindsay A.
Johnston, Steve D.
Lisle, Allan T.
Horsup, Alan B.
Janssen, Tina
Phillips, Clive J. C.
Title The effect of environmental variables on the activity patterns of the southern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons) in captivity: Onset, duration and cessation of activity
Formatted title
The effect of environmental variables on the activity patterns of the southern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons) in captivity: Onset, duration and cessation of activity
Journal name Australian Journal of Zoology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0004-959X
1446-5698
Publication date 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1071/ZO11006
Volume 59
Issue 1
Start page 35
End page 41
Total pages 7
Place of publication Collingwood, VIC, Australia
Publisher CSIRO Publishing
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The influence of scotoperiod, ambient temperature and humidity on the activity of captive wombats was examined to differentiate environmental influence from that pertaining to food availability. The activity of 12 wombats (Lasiorhinus latifrons) housed at Rockhampton Zoo was remotely monitored by digital video-surveillance for one year, with environmental variables simultaneously recorded via dataloggers. Mean proportion of total daily time spent active was 18.2 ± 1.8%. Mean daily time spent active varied seasonally according to changes in temperature and humidity. Mean daily activity was greater during winter (301 ± 17 min) and spring (295 ± 16 min), than summer (234 ± 16 min) and autumn (238 ± 15 min) with differences due to a decrease in the number and length of activity bouts in summer and autumn; presumably these results reflect a need to maintain heat balance associated with exposure to elevated temperatures. Activity was positively correlated with temperature during winter (r = 0.60) and spring (r = 0.52) but negatively correlated during summer (r = –0.58) and autumn (r = –0.49), suggesting the existence of a thermoneutral zone where activity is maximised. We conclude that activity in captive wombats is influenced by environmental variables.
Keyword Circadian rhythm
Emergence
Nocturnalism
Thermoregulation
Burrow-use
Vombatidae
Marsupialia
Behavior
Owen
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
School of Veterinary Science Publications
 
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