Using the fingers of the trunk to ‘pinch’ the genitals of another. An older Begging calf may pinch its mother’s genitals apparently to get her attention or to persuade her to stop so that it may Suckle.

References: Poole & Granli 2021. (Full reference list)

This behavior occurs in the following context(s): Calf Nourishment & Weaning


Context: Calf Nourishment & Weaning (1)

Selengei's 6 year male calf walks along side of her in a Solicit-Suckling posture and gives a Begging-Rumble. As this clip starts she has stopped and he is Suckling. He decides to try his luck on the other side. On his way around behind her he stops to pinch her genitals - Pinch-Genitals - as if to let her know he wants more. He has learned a lot of tricks by this age!

After his pinch he gives a Begging-Rumble and Suckles while she browses. Then she begins to walk and he again walks along side of her in a Solicit-Suckling posture, his trunk outstretched, and gives another Begging-Rumble. She continues to walk and he gives a third Begging-Rumble. She stops and adopts a Suckling-Stance and he Suckles.

We can hear Maasai livestock in the background and she is eager to move on. Selengei interrupts his Suckling and he gives a Grumble-Rumble in a more complaining tone. She continues to walk. In this series of calls we can hear the subtle shift from polite Begging-Rumble to more complaining Grumble-Rumble - it is not easy to draw a clear line between the two. (Maasai Mara, Kenya)


Context: Calf Nourishment & Weaning (2)

A 6-8 year old adolescent female is walking alongside her mother f0257 and has adopted the persistent walk and close body contact of a calf who is Solicit-Suckling. She reaches her trunk out and touches - or rather appears to pinch (!) her mother's genitals (Trunk-to-Genitals) x 2 as if to get her mother's to pay attention. We do actually believe this is what she is doing as there are a couple of other examples of this behavior. (Maasai Mara, Kenya)


Context: Calf Nourishment & Weaning (3)

Big Mama's large family is on the move. f0043's 5 year old female calf uses several behaviors book to Solicit-Suckling. As she walks behind her mother she uses her trunk to grasp her mother's right hind leg (Grasp-Leg). That not working she moves to the other side and snakes her trunk around to touch or pinch her mother's genitals (Pinch-Genitals) and then again Grasps-Leg.

None of these attempts work the calf walks persistently alongside her mother with trunk raised (Periscope-Trunk). f0043 pause and her calf Suckles briefly before adopting Periscope-Trunk again. (Maasai Mara, Kenya)