Michael S Mooring

Michael S Mooring
Point Loma Nazarene University | PLNU · Biology

Ph.D.

About

58
Publications
20,949
Reads
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2,305
Citations
Citations since 2017
13 Research Items
658 Citations
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
Additional affiliations
September 1987 - June 1993
University of California, Davis
Position
  • PhD Student

Publications

Publications (58)
Article
Full-text available
Although Central America is one of the most biologically diverse regions in the world, booming road construction is driving roadkill mortality that threatens to alter the demography, genetic diversity, and viability of wild mammalian populations. Costa Rica has the highest road density in Central America, but the effectiveness of wildlife crossings...
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Introducción: Los cambios temporales de nicho pueden amoldar las interacciones predador-presa al permitir a la presa evadir los predadores, mejorar la eficacia de la alimentación y reducir la competición entre predadores. Además de los patrones de actividad circadianos, el ciclo lunar mensual puede influye en los patrones de actividad nocturna de l...
Article
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Introducción: La persistencia de los polimorfismos del color del pelaje, como la coexistencia del color del pelaje melánico (negro) y el "tipo salvaje" (manchado), es un enigma evolutivo. Objetivo: Probamos las predicciones de la Regla de Gloger y la hipótesis de la Segregación Temporal que proponen que los individuos melánicos (a) ocurrirán con ma...
Article
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Introducción: La Cordillera de Talamanca en el sureste de Costa Rica, es una región prioritaria para la conservación, posee ecosistemas y especies poco conocidas. El estudio de mamíferos silvestres permite comprender la estructura y estado de conservación de los bosques tropicales: uno de los ecosistemas más diversos del planeta. Objetivo: Evaluar...
Article
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In most polygynous species, males compete for access to females using agonistic interactions to establish dominance hierarchies. Typically, larger and stronger males become more dominant and thus gain higher mating and reproductive success over subordinate males. However, there is an inherent trade-off between time and energy invested in dominance...
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Temporal niche shifts can shape predator–prey interactions by enabling predator avoidance, enhancing feeding success, and reducing competition among predators. Using a community-based conservation approach, we investigated temporal niche partitioning of mammalian predators and prey across 12 long-term camera trap surveys in the Pacific slope and Ta...
Article
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An increasing body of evidence indicates that moonlight influences the nocturnal activity patterns of tropical mammals, both predators and prey. One explanation is that brighter moonlight is associated with increased risk of predation (Predation Risk hypothesis), but it has also been proposed that nocturnal activity may be influenced by the sensory...
Article
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The persistence of coat color polymorphisms—such as the coexistence of melanistic and “wild-type” coat color—is an ongoing evolutionary puzzle. We tested the predictions of Gloger’s rule and the Temporal Segregation hypothesis that propose that melanistic individuals will (a) occur more frequently in closed tropical forest versus open habitat due t...
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Bush dogs (Speothos venaticus) are a small, wide-ranging neotropical pack-hunting canid whose ecology is relatively poorly known. Here, we document new, repeated observations of bush dog groups in east-central (Barbilla National Park) and south-eastern (La Amistad International Park) Costa Rica that suggest either that their recent or historic rang...
Article
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Accurate measures of fitness are important for both basic research on sexual selection and applied conservation actions to promote genetic diversity. For polygynous mammals, good estimates of male reproductive success are often critically important, but especially difficult to obtain. Because the genetic contribution of males is impossible to direc...
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Source-filter theory provides a framework to interpret the acoustic structure of vertebrate vocalizations in relation to biophysical production, and it predicts that specific acoustic parameters can encode information about callers. Because formant frequencies are determined by vocal tract dimensions, with longer vocal tracts producing lower forman...
Article
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Adult impala engage in a form of reciprocal allogrooming distinguished by a high degree of reciprocity and ***lack of influence of dominance or relatedness on partner preference or distribution of grooming between partners. A previous study on reciprocal allogrooming of captive newborn impala lambs in a zoological park found that the allogrooming e...
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Among adult females and males of African antelope impala are unique in their performance of reciprocal allogrooming. The occurrence of this behaviour in neonatal impala fawns was explored in a free-ranging impala herd at the San Diego Wild Animal Park where 5 dam-reared fawns were observed from birth through 10 weeks of age. One-way maternal groomi...
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Knowledge of how predation risk affects population survivorship is important for understanding predator–prey relationships and designing effective conservation strategies. The Allee effect (inverse density dependence) can be generated when antipredator strategies become inefficient in small groups of prey, thus making the population more susceptibl...
Article
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Los insectos que pican imponen costos a sus huéspedes, incluyendo una disminución en el tiempo de alimentación o descanso como consecuencia de la molestia, la pérdida de sangre, y la transmisión de enfermedades. Los comportamientos para repeler los insectos, tales como mover las orejas, sacudir la cabeza, dar coces, y agruparse, han evolucionado en...
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Sound amplitude (measured as sound pressure level) is an acoustical parameter that has received little attention within communication research, especially in mammals. Although difficult to measure in the field, amplitude is a potentially important parameter of sexually selected signals. In North American plains bison, Bison bison, ‘bellows’ are low...
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Oxpecker host selection appears to be governed by an array of factors affecting the efficiency of foraging for ticks, with optimally foraging oxpeckers choosing those hosts that maximize tick intake and/or minimize search time. We studied yellow-billed oxpeckers Buphagus africanus (Linnaeus) at Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe, in order to examine th...
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Published data reveal a significant positive relationship between number of red-billed oxpeckers Buphagus erythrorhynchus per unit body surface area and species-typical body weight, suggesting that the larger ungulate species maintain a higher density of tick mass per unit surface area. The impala Aepyceros melampus is the smallest ungulate that ox...
Article
Biting insects are costly to hosts, and insect-repelling movements of the tail, ears, head, and feet are widespread in mammals and effective in reducing bites. We investigate whether the ‘peripheral stimulation model’ can explain the regulation of this widespread behaviour pattern in a comparative study of bovids. The peripheral stimulation hypothe...
Article
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The programmed grooming model proposes that animals groom in response to an internal timing mechanism that has evolved to control ectoparasites. This model predicts that polygynous males will groom less frequently than smaller females (sexually dimorphic grooming) because (1) parasitism is more costly for smaller individuals (body size principle),...
Article
A primary response to stress is an increase in circulating adrenal glucocorticoids (GC) such as cortisol. Two hypotheses propose differential stress responses to agonistic and aggressive interactions in social groups. If subordinate animals are subjected to social and psychological stressors leading to chronic GC elevation, the 'stress of subordina...
Article
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Ectoparasites such as ticks have a negative effect on host fitness, whereas parasite-defense grooming is effective in removing ticks. The central control (programmed grooming) model proposes that animals engage in preventive tick-defense grooming in response to an internal timing mechanism, even in the absence of peripheral stimulation from parasit...
Article
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Sexual segregation, in which males and females form separate groups for most of the year, is common in sexually dimorphic ungulates. We tested multiple hypotheses to explain sexual segregation in bison (Bison bison) at National Bison Range, Montana and Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge, Nebraska during June-August of 2002-2003. Fieldwork invol...
Article
The influence of sex hormones is a key proximate factor underlying male reproductive behavior in mammals. Effective conservation policies for the remaining purebred plains bison (Bison bison bison) herds require knowledge of the physiology underlying bison reproductive biology. We used fecal steroid analysis to characterize androgen levels in adult...
Article
Grooming repertoires are exhibited by all terrestrial mammals, and removal of ectoparasites is an important ances-tral and current function. Parasite-defence grooming is regulated both by a central control mechanism (programmed grooming model) and by cutaneous stimulation from bites (stimulus-driven model). To study the evolution of para-site-defen...
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One or several factors could explain sexual segregation, in which males and females of polygynous, sexually dimorphic species form separate herds during most of the year. Bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) are polygynous ungulates that exhibit extreme sexual dimorphism and segregate into ram and ewe herds outside of the rutting season. Four major hypo...
Article
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Grooming is effective in removing fitness-compromising ectoparasites, such as ticks. Tick-removal grooming is regulated both by a central control mechanism (programmed grooming model) and by cutaneous stimulation from tick bites (stimulus-driven model). The programmed grooming model predicts that organismic factors that impact the cost-benefit rati...
Article
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Tick removal grooming may be centrally regulated by an internal timing mechanism operating to remove ticks before they attach and engorge (programmed grooming model) and/or evoked by cutaneous stimulation from tick bites (stimulus-driven model). The programmed grooming model predicts that organismic and environmental factors that impact the cost-be...
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Premature loss of winter hair coat can be a serious problem for moose (Alces alces), possibly leading to escalated heat loss and depleted reserves. Studies of captive moose have indicated that premature winter hair loss is associated with infestation by winter ticks (Dermacentor albipictus), and the extent of hair loss is associated with grooming e...
Article
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In domestic and wild mammals, tick infestation can be a significant fitness cost. Grooming behaviour has been shown to be effective in removing ticks. We studied grooming by moose, Alces alces, infested with winter ticks, Dermacentor albipictus, to determine which of two nonexclusive models for the regulation of tick-removal grooming, programmed or...
Article
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Grooming behaviour, and its effectiveness in controlling infestation by the winter tick (Dermacentor albipictus), was studied for plains bison (Bison bison bison) in Elk Island National Park, Alberta, Canada from October 1995 through June 1996. Bison had few ticks (mean, 133 ticks per animal; 0.009 ticks per cm2), particularly in comparison with sm...
Article
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In African antelope and North American cervids, breeding males during the rut engage in less oral self-grooming, and harbor a greater density of ticks, compared with conspecific females and non-breeding males. The purpose of this study was to experimentally test the proposition that down-regulation of self grooming in some male bovids occurs via th...
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The grooming behaviour of elk (Cervus elaphus) was observed in order to test the predictions of the programmed-grooming hypothesis. The highest grooming rates occurred when most winter ticks, Dermacentor albipictus, were blood-feeding. Elk at Elk Island National Park (EINP) and Jasper National Park (JNP) oral-groomed most during October-November, w...
Article
Full-text available
Adult impala engage in a form of reciprocal allogrooming distinguished by a high degree of reciprocity and lack of influence of dominance or relatedness on partner preference or distribution of grooming between partners. A previous study on reciprocal allogrooming of captive newborn impala lambs in a zoological park found that the allogrooming emer...
Article
Full-text available
Oral grooming is highly effective in removing ectoparasites in ungulates and other species. The programmed grooming model postulates that preventive oral grooming bouts are periodically activated by an internal timing mechanism (clock), with grooming rates modulated according to fitness costs and benefits. The ‘body size principle’ of the programme...
Article
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The role of sex and breeding status constraints on grooming behavior and tick load in impala was examined among females, bachelor males (B males), and territorial males (T males) during the breeding season in Zimbabwe. T males orally groomed themselves much less than females or B males, whereas B males orally groomed themselves at a higher rate tha...
Article
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In Experiment 1, five adult female impala were fitted with harnesses that restrained oral self-grooming of the anterior part of the body. At the same time, six cohoused female impala were fitted with control harnesses that allowed normal oral grooming. The impala were allowed to habituate to the harnesses for 10 days, and both groups were then expo...
Article
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In order to better understand the symbiotic relationship of the oxpecker-mammal association and the role that oxpeckers play in controlling their hosts' tick burdens, interactions between yellow-billed oxpeckers (Buphagus africanus) and impala (Aepyceros melampus) were investigated at Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe during the wet and dry seasons. O...
Article
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Quantitative data on host tick burdens are fundamental for the initiation of control strategies and effective management of wildlife populations, but the methods of live sampling employed for domestic animals are unsuitable for sampling wild animals. Despite advances in the use of destructive methods (the scrub and digestion techniques) to obtain m...
Article
Full-text available
Grooming is among the most commonly performed parasite defence behaviour patterns and is effective in removing ticks. Because both tick infestation and grooming activity have a cost, natural selection should favour individuals that match the current level of tick threat with an appropriate level of tick-defence grooming effort. To test this notion,...
Article
Full-text available
During the breeding season in Zimbabwe territorial male impala were found to engage in much less self oral grooming and allogrooming than females, presumably as a reflection of the need to remain vigilant in herding females and repulsing challenging bachelor males. Territorial males spent an average of 11 min engaged in all types of grooming during...
Article
Full-text available
Grooming is among the most commonly performed parasite defence behaviour patterns and is effective in removing ticks. Because both tick infestation and grooming activity have a cost, natural selection should favour individuals that match the current level of tick threat with an appropriate level of tick-defence grooming effort. To test this notion,...
Article
Full-text available
The effect of rainfall pattern on tick challenge was investigated at Kyle Recreational Park, Zimbabwe, from 1991 to 1992 using drag and removal plot methods to sample environmental tick density. The abundance of adults and nymphs of the brown ear-tick Rhipicephalus appendiculatus and larvae of the bont tick Amblyomma hebraeum was positively correla...
Article
Full-text available
Wild impala display a highly reciprocal allogrooming system that, by virtue of its frequency and high degree of reciprocity, is unique among ungulates. A herd of 35 free-ranging captive impala provided opportunity to examine the degree of reciprocity of allogrooming exchanges and the influence of relatedness, dominance, age and association on partn...
Article
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Grouping has been widely accepted as a mechanism for protection from predation. Just as has been apparent with predation, there is now ample evidence that parasites (biting flies, warble flies and parasitoids) can impact an animal's individual fitness. Some aspects of grouping, namely an encounter-dilution effect and the selfish herd effect, appear...
Article
Grooming in ungulates has been shown to be very effective in removing ectoparasites. Ectoparasites, especially ticks, may be costly to an animal's resources in terms of blood removed and depression of appetite. There are two opposing models that address the parasite-control of function of grooming: (1) animals may groom in response to stimulation f...
Article
Full-text available
Because impala are commonly exhibited and handreared in zoos and their natural nursing behavior had not previously been studied, we examined nursing and early development in five impala calves housed in a large, naturalistic enclosure. Calves were observed for the first 5 weeks of life during 12-hr continuous watches and 20-min focal animal samples...

Questions

Question (1)
Question
Hello everyone,
My research team and I have been running a community-based camera trap survey of elusive mammals in national parks, reserves, and biological corridors of Costa Rica. During 2020, many of the camera units in the surveys that failed could not be replaced due to travel restrictions arising from the pandemic. Thus, I am hoping to bring many replacement cams to Costa Rica this summer but I cannot source the Trophy Cam Aggressor anywhere, and I was just able to purchase some units back in the fall. Does anyone have any info on where and how I can purchase more units? My normal sources (amazon.com and B & H Photos) are not carrying any reasonably priced units, if any.
Cheers
Mike

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