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Alpha-Female Aggressive Behaviors:
During nest-building periods Alpha-females (OTKO) were very aggressive and dominated other mice in the semi-natural environment. Here we see the Alpha-female (lighter color), coming into view from the lower right, chasing and attacking another female (darker - WT) while another WT female scurries away from the female, exiting lower left. The female feeding in the upper right corner is an OTKO.
Aggressive Behavior during Feeding Challenge:
Aggressive behaviors increased considerably during the feeding challenge. The Alpha-female (OTKO with markings on the scruff on neck) can be seen pulling an OTWT mouse out of the feeding tube as the WT was attempting to obtain food pellets. After the alpha female obtained her pellet, the other two mice (both WT) fight each other to obtain access to the food source.
Response to Male Intruder during Intruder Paradigm:
Immediately upon being detected in the semi-natural environment, intruders are attacked, initially by the first mouse to detect its presence, but then soon after by other mice.
A Swiss-Webster albino male was used here to clearly show the speed and intensity of response of the females to the male being placed into the semi-natural environment. The male was placed into SNE at 12:58.00pm and was attacked at 12:58.14pm.
OTKO Alpha-female is the first to approach the male (14secs after being placed into the SNE) and continued to nip and bite the male for the entire time it was in the SNE. Other females began investigating and biting the male within 30secs of being placed into the SNE.
Female-Female Dominant behavior:
Social dominance may be expressed through sexual behavior. Female OTKO frequently mounted WT in a display of sexual dominance. Here we see an OTKO female mounting a WT female, displaying male sexual behavior. Note that the WT female shows a strong lordosis response, the same type of response which a receptive female mouse exhibits upon being mounted by a male mouse.