Animals Use Pheromones To Mark Territory
To prepare for a stink ﬁght, lemurs spread pheromone secretions over themselves and their immediate surroundings. They coat their hands, feet, and even their tails with pheromone secretions produced by special glands on their chests and wrists. Now armed with odors, the two animals approach each other, waving their freshly scented tails in the air and making scent marks on the surrounding vegetation with their pheromone-covered hands and feet.
One animal may advance a little and then retreat as the other comes toward him. Each time a lemur advances, he takes care to place his own pheromone marks directly over those of the other lemur, thus destroying the scent of his opponent in that spot. The ﬁght may go back and forth like this for more than an hour before one animal eventually gives up and retreats for good.
These trails are used to show the way to food sources, to direct other ants to a new location for a nest, or to help the trail-laying individual find its way back home. Unlike alarm pheromones, which tend to disperse rapidly, trail pheromones are much more persistent and the chemical messages they convey last much longer. Learn how they affect humans at http://chrshrt112.typepad.com