Closer examination of the diurnal or nocturnal nature of wildlife species improves the knowledge necessary for landscape identity and biodiversity preservation. The aim of this study was to evaluate the daily rhythmicity of total locomotor activity in wild felids of several species of Leopardus of similar body weight housed in captivity: Geoffroy’s cat (Leopardus geoffroyi), ocelot (Leopardus pardalis), oncilla (Leopardus tigrinus) and margay (Leopardus wiedii). Twenty-four felids, six animals for each species, were housed under a natural light/dark cycle. The activity was recorded for thirteen consecutive days by means of an actimeter attached to a neck collar. Using cosinor rhythmometry, circadian rhythmic parameters (mesor, amplitude and acrophase) were assessed and compared among the several species. The daily and individual chronobiological variations of rest and activity showed a well-defined pattern. A nocturnal daily rhythmicity of locomotor activity was observed in Geoffroy’s cat, ocelot, oncilla and margay. The acrophase was observed shortly after midnight in margay and Geoffroy’s cat, and early at night in oncilla and ocelot. Our results improve the knowledge about the circadian system in wild animals. They can be a contribution to understanding the adaptive behaviour of wild felid species kept in zoological parks and rehabilitation agencies in providing the proper care for these animals

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Journal: Animal Biology. 2022 Feb 8;1(aop):1-1.

Keywords: captivity, cats, Circadian rhythm, felids, leopardus, rest-activity, veterinary,

Applications: Veterinary,

CamNtech Reference: AM22002

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