On the island of Madagascar, the largest carnivore is: the island mongoose. It looks like a mountain lion, but its mouth resembles a dog, and its weight is much smaller than that of a mountain lion and a dog. The adult individual weighs only 5-10 kilograms. However, because there are fewer local carnivores, and many large and small heads, so It is the largest carnivore in the area.
Ma Island mongooses are good at living in trees. Like primates, they can jump on trees, but they are not as flexible as monkeys. In fact, their main food is monkeys, and lemurs account for more than 50% of their diet.
Because they have lived in trees for a long time, they have evolved a unique way of mating: they mate in trees, and males will line up to mate and are not allowed to jump in the queue. What is going on?
Horse Island Mongoose
Madao mongooses are solitary creatures, and they only briefly meet with the opposite sex during the estrus period. During the estrus period, male and female individuals will communicate with each other through the information emitted by the breast and lower body glands.
The mating process of the Mashima mongoose is on trees, and they tend to choose very tall trees, which means that if an accident occurs during the mating process, both parties may fall off the tree and die.
Researchers found that the island mongoose chooses the same tree as the mating site every year. When the estrus comes, the female island mongoose will occupy the upper position of the tree, waiting for the arrival of the male. Sometimes, there will be many males coming to mate, but before going to the tree to mate, there will be a fight between the males, and only a few winners are eligible to go to the tree.
After going up the tree, the males will line up to mate with the females, and these lined up males will hardly fight to jump in line, perhaps because the risk of fighting in the tree is too high, and they have already had a round under the tree.
These queuing males have to accept the selection of females. If females like each other, they will mate with it, but if they don’t like each other, they will also reject each other, and even throw the male Madao mongoose to the ground. In this way, females will take turns to mate with males on the tree, except for what they don’t like.
When this female horse island mongoose leaves, another female horse island mongoose will occupy the tree and continue to repeat the mating story. So if you travel to the local area, if you meet the marriage tree of the Falklands mongoose, observe for a while, maybe you can see the peculiar mating style of the Falklands mongoose.
The peculiar body structure of the island mongoose
Like cats, the male reproductive organs have barbs made of protein, but cats use the barbs to stimulate females to secrete a special hormone to make the eggs mature quickly. The main purpose of the barb is to take the sperm of the predecessor out of the body.
The Madao mongoose pursues a polygamy strategy. The reason for this reproductive strategy is that the male pays very little to give birth to offspring. It only needs to pay a small amount of germ cells, so even if they are mated with different females, they There is no loss.
Females have 2-4 offspring per litter. Because they invest more energy and pay a higher price when giving birth to offspring, they want to increase the survival rate of cubs and increase the survival rate of cubs. One of the ways to rate is to make the cub’s genes more diverse. By mating with different males, you can make your cubs have different male genes, so that the ability to resist risks will be greatly improved.
After the baby is born, the female baby mongoose will develop into male reproductive organs at about 7 months, and will become more and more similar, and can even secrete the same secretion as the adult male mongoose. People mistakenly thought it was a male horse island mongoose.
After the estrus period, the male characteristics of the female horse island mongoose will gradually fade and begin to become a true female appearance. So what is going on with this unique body structure?
Some people think that the reason why the Falkland Mongoose did this may be because they are too young to compete with other males. In addition, the Falkland Mongoose are solitary creatures. They must have a habitat to survive, so they ” Pretend to be a male to scare off invaders.
When they reach adulthood, their strength will increase, and at this time they have the ability to protect their habitat even if they do not pretend to be males. Coupled with the fact that they will face estrus after they reach adulthood, maintaining female characteristics at this time will help attract more males.
The current situation of the Madao mongoose
Although the Falklands mongoose is the largest carnivore in the area, and has a peculiar body structure and appearance, people pay less attention to it, so that the protection of it is not as high as the jaguar.
In addition, the Malagasy mongoose is highly dependent on the environment, and the forests in Madagascar have been cut down by humans, resulting in the continuous loss of their habitats, making them less and less species, and now they have become endangered creatures.
If you don’t pay attention to protecting them, you may only be able to see it in the movie and television materials in the future!