Determining the age of adult wild dogs (Canis lupus dingo, C. l. domesticus and their hybrids): I. Pulp cavity/tooth width ratios

Article


Kershaw, K., Allen, L., Lisle, A. and Withers, K.. 2005. "Determining the age of adult wild dogs (Canis lupus dingo, C. l. domesticus and their hybrids): I. Pulp cavity/tooth width ratios." Wildlife Research. 32 (6), pp. 581-585. https://doi.org/10.1035-3712/05/060581
Article Title

Determining the age of adult wild dogs (Canis lupus dingo, C. l. domesticus and their hybrids): I. Pulp cavity/tooth width ratios

ERA Journal ID3020
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsKershaw, K. (Author), Allen, L. (Author), Lisle, A. (Author) and Withers, K. (Author)
Journal TitleWildlife Research
Journal Citation32 (6), pp. 581-585
Number of Pages5
Year2005
PublisherCSIRO Publishing
Place of PublicationMelbourne, Australia
ISSN1035-3712
1448-5494
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1035-3712/05/060581
Web Address (URL)http://www.publish.csiro.au/journal/wr
Abstract

In order to determine the age of adult wild dogs, we compared two methods (that of Thomson and Rose (TR method) and that of Knowlton and Whittemore (KW method)) of measuring and calculating pulp cavity:tooth width ratios on upper and lower canine teeth from 68 mixed-sex, known-age wild dogs of 9 months to 13 years of age reared at two localities. Although significant relationships (P = 0.0001) were found between age and pulp cavity ratios by both methods, the TR ratio calculation and measurement showed heteroscedasity in error variance whereas the KW ratios had a more stable error variance and were normally distributed. The KW method also found significant differences between pulp cavity ratios between teeth of the upper and lower jaws (P < 0.0001) and sex (P = 0.01) but not geographic origin (P = 0.1). Regressions and formulae for fitted curves are presented separately for male and female wild dogs. Males show greater variability in pulp cavity decrements with age than do females, suggesting a physiological difference between the sexes. We conclude that the KW method of using pulp cavity as a proportion of tooth width, measured 15 mm from the root tip and averaged over both upper canines, is the more accurate method of estimating the age of adult wild dogs.

Keywordsdingos, age determination, canine teeth
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020310999. Zoology not elsewhere classified
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Byline AffiliationsDepartment of Biological and Physical Sciences
Department of Natural Resources and Mines, Queensland
University of Queensland
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