“Necking” behaviour in the giraffe

Author(s)M.J. Coe
Year Published1967
JournalJournal of Zoology
Page Numbers313-321
Size1.17 MB
Abstract:

Previous references to “necking” behaviour, and the main features of the study area are briefly outlined. “Necking” behaviour in giraffe takes place only in all male herds. When the animals are in a head to head posture the intensity is either high or low, but when animals take up a head to tail posture the actions are always of high intensity and appear to have greater sexual significance. The significance of “necking” is discussed, and it is suggested that these ritualized actions form an important sexuo-social bonding mechanism whereby a hierarchy is created amongst the males, and movement between strictly bachelor and mixed herds helps to maintain contact between the sexes in this polygamous mammal.

Key Words: Necking, giraffe, behaviour, head posture, hierarchy, sexuo-social, polygamous

Author: M.J. Coe

Journal: Journal of Zoology


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