Identification of some volatile compounds in the odor of fecal pellets of the rabbit,Oryctolagus cuniculus
A study has been made of the volatile constituents in the vapors collected from fecal pellets of wild rabbits,Oryctolagus cuniculus. Measurements of changes in the heart rates of adult male rabbits exposed to the effluent of a gas chromatographic capillary column were used to indicate the presence of compounds which may be of behavioral significance. Combined with the use of high-resolution columns in gas chromatography and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, this approach has implicated several classes of compounds, including volatile fatty acids and phenols, which in certain absolute or relative concentrations may be involved in the formation of signals of territorial importance.
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