Biofluorescence and predator avoidance in the giraffe

Biofluorescence of mammalian pelage may serve to hide prey from predators sensitive to ultraviolet radiation, among other potential functions. To date biofluorescence has been documented in nocturnal-crepuscular and fossorial mammals that are active under low-light conditions. Giraffes are primarily diurnal, but biofluorescent pelage might offer camouflage from their nocturnal felid predators. Using a full-spectrum camera we qualitatively analyzed UV reflectance and absorption in giraffe pelage from a museum specimen. We found no trace of UV biofluorescence in the giraffe pelage, suggesting that this trait may not be ecologically or biologically relevant in giraffes. The function of biofluorescence in mammals remains elusive, but our study contributes to the growing body of data about biofluorescence, or its lack thereof, in diurnal versus nocturnal-crepuscular or fossorial mammal species.

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Work Title Biofluorescence and predator avoidance in the giraffe
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Open Access
Creators
  1. Kin Morandi
  2. Anna K. Lindholm
  3. Derek E. Lee
  4. Monica L. Bond
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Article
Publisher
  1. African Journal of Ecology
Publication Date January 30, 2023
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
  1. https://doi.org/10.1111/aje.13107
Deposited July 12, 2023

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Version 1
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  • Created
  • Added Morandi_et_al_2023_Biofluorescence_in_giraffe.pdf
  • Added Creator Kin Morandi
  • Added Creator Anna K. Lindholm
  • Added Creator Derek E. Lee
  • Added Creator Monica L. Bond
  • Published
  • Updated Publication Date Show Changes
    Publication Date
    • 2023-06-01
    • 2023-01-30
  • Updated