Giraffe feeding on Acacia flowers: predation or pollination?

Author(s)J.T. Du Toit
Year Published1990
JournalAfrican Journal of Ecology
Page Numbers63-68
Size728.93 KB
Abstract:

Consumption of flowers by the following four browsing ruminant species was monitored for two years in a southern African savannah: giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis Linnaeus), kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros Pallas), impala (Aepyceros melampus Lichtenstein) and steenbok (Raphicerus campestris Thunberg). Flowers of Acacia nigrescens Oliver are an important food resource to giraffe in the late dry season. This is not necessarily deleterious to the reproductive potential of the plant however, as most or all African Acacia species bear high proportions of sterile flowers. Factors such as inflorescence structure and colour, pollen morphology and thorn structure suggest that one group of African Acacias could be pollinated by ungulates. Timing of flowering in A. nigrescens, and a close association between A. nigrescens and giraffe, indicate that giraffe could well be a pollen vector for this species.

Key Words: Giraffe, Acacia, ungulate, predation, pollination, browsers, Acacia nigrescens

Author: J.T. Du Toit

Journal: African Journal of Ecology


FileAction
Du Toit - 1990 - Giraffe feeding on acacia flowers predation or po.pdfDownload 
Terms and Conditions: Any PDF files provided by the GRC are for personal use only and may not be reproduced. The files reflect the holdings of the GRC library and only contain pages relevant to giraffe study, and may not be complete. Users are obliged to follow all copyright restrictions.