Effects of social disruption in elephants persist decades after culling
Graeme Shannon, Rob Slotow, Sarah M Durant, Katito N Sayialel, Joyce Poole, Cynthia Moss and Karen McComb
23 October 2013

Key decision-making abilities [of large brained mammal species] that are fundamental to living in complex  societies could be significantly altered in the long-term through exposure to severely disruptive events (e.g. culling and translocation).


Multi-level fission-fusion societies, characteristic of a number of large brained mammal species including some primates, cetaceans and elephants, are among the most complex and cognitively demanding animal social systems. Many free-ranging populations of these highly social mammals already face severe human disturbance, which is set to accelerate with projected anthropogenic environmental change. Despite this, our understanding of how such disruption affects core aspects of social functioning is still very limited.

Read the full report: http://www.frontiersinzoology.com/content/10/1/62