oa African Zoology - Breeding biology of the bush veld gerbil Tatera leucogaster in relation to diet, rainfall and life history theory

Volume 22, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



The breeding habits of the bush veld gerbil Tatera leucogaster were examined in relation to rainfall and diet. Breeding is seasonal and associated with regular summer rainfall. The duration of the breeding season is variable, which is indicative of a temporally dynamic reproductive strategy. Litter size is large, and the punctuated iteroparity of T. leucogaster is associated with a xeric environment. The reproductive tactics of T. leucogaster are discussed in relation to other gerbils and rodents exhibiting similar reproductive strategies. Tatera leucogaster is a selective feeder on transient but seasonally available insects and seeds, but feeds on herbage when preferred foods are unavailable.

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