Infanticide by unrelated individuals is widely reported in the animal kingdom; however, little is known about cases perpetrated by a parent, particularly the mother. This article reports on three cases of mother-initiated infanticide in Qinling golden takins ( Budorcas taxicolor bedfordi) recorded from video and camera images. Based on previous reports in other animals, we propose that the infanticide events observed in golden takins were related to the parental manipulation mechanism - i.e., killing an unhealthy infant to allow the mother to invest more care in potentially healthy offspring, and gain more fruitful reproductive opportunities. This appears to be an evolutionary-based selection strategy, whereby a species can prosper and succeed under the challenges of natural selection. However, further studies on both captive and wild populations are required to answer the various questions raised from our observations.
|Number of pages||3|
|Publication status||Published - 18 Jul 2020|