Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Scent Marking

Act of placing an olfactory cue on elements of the environment within a territory, on a mate, or on the individual itself, to advertise the presence of the marker to conspecifics. Some of the lower primates have specialized scent glands used for such marking behavior. In some cases, as in the potto, the scent is used to navigate the home range. Scent marking may be accomplished by scent glands that secrete the odorous substance, by deposition of feces, or by urine; the last is the primary substance used by primates.

See marking and urine washing.

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