Gromov, V. 2022. Ecology and social behaviour of the Mongolian gerbil: A generalised review. Behaviour 159(5), 403-441.
The present review provides a compilation of the published data on the ecology and social behaviour of Mongolian gerbils. Behavioural observations in the wild show that the Mongolian gerbil is a diurnal social rodent living in extended family groups. Seasonal breeding is typical of Mongolian gerbils in their natural habitat. Social monogamy seems to be characteristic of the Mongolian gerbil reproductive strategy, which however does not exclude facultative polygyny and promiscuity. A typical feature of the space use system in this species is territoriality. Social relationships in family groups may be defined as a subordination hierarchy. The hierarchy order is primarily determined by the age of the animals and maintained chiefly by the subordinates' behaviour patterns. The complex social organisation in the Mongolian gerbil is characterised by cooperation in different activities. Cooperation appears to enhance the survival of family groups of this species under the extreme climatic conditions of Central Asia.