Original Research

Activity patterns of terrestrial gamebirds in the Willem Pretorius Game reserve, Orange Free State

C. W. Jubelius, O. B. Kok
Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie | Vol 4, No 2 | a1028 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/satnt.v4i2.1028 | © 1985 C. W. Jubelius, O. B. Kok | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 18 March 1985 | Published: 18 March 1985

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C. W. Jubelius,, South Africa
O. B. Kok,, South Africa

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Activity patterns of the Natal francolin (Francolinus natalensis), Swaison’s francolin (F. swaisoni) and the crowned guinea-fowl (Numida meleagris) appear to be influenced mainly by climatic conditions, either directly or indirectly. Diurnal activities are characterised by early-morning and late-afternoon peaks and long periods of rest during the middle of the day. Feeding is the most important activity of the birds, followed by maintenance and strenuous activities. Seasonal and species-specific preferences in the use of shade apparently play an important thermoregulatory role. In comparison to behaviour patterns carried out in direct sunlight, shade-associated behaviour tends to a greater extent to be dominated by maintenance activities, especially during the wet season.


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