Magnetic alignment in free-ranging Indian Leopard (Panthera pardus fusca)

Reuven Yosef, Swapnil Kumbhojkar, Bablu Gurjar, Jakub Z. Kosicki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The earth’s geomagnetic field (GMF) is known to influence the behaviour of a wide range of species, but remains one of the most enigmatic of animal senses. Animals are known to utilize the GMF for a wide range of survival capabilities such as navigation and orienteering, migration, territoriality, homing, etc. Despite a lot of study in this regard on vertebrates, little is known about the effects of GMF on felids. Hence, we analyzed the body alignment of the Indian Leopard during defecation, and walking along the trails in the Jhalana Reserve Forest in India. Using circular statistics, we found that the leopards aligned their bodies on the north-south axis during defecation (mean azimuth -176.4∘), while no such preference was found when walking (mean azimuth 52.9∘). Thus we prove that leopards are sensitive to the GMF during basic physiological activities and in this context show similar behaviour to other vertebrates studied to date.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0266129
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number7 July
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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