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Effects of Food Preference on Scatter-Hoarding by Kangaroo Rats (Dipodomys Merriami)

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Two laboratory studies were conducted to determine whether Merriam's kangaroo rats invest greater effort in the caching of a more preferred food. As predicted, more of the preferred food was cached and yet the individual caches were smaller. The second experiment showed wider dispersion of the preferred food, and these caches were placed further away from the source. These findings imply that investment in protecting food from pilferage is adjusted in relation to the animal's evaluation of that food.


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Affiliations: 1: McMaster University, Department of Psychology, Hamilton, Ontario, L8S 4K1, Canada;, Email:; 2: McMaster University, Department of Psychology, Hamilton, Ontario, L8S 4K1, Canada


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