What causes crowding? Effects of space, facilities and group size on behaviour, with particular reference to furnished cages for hens

Theoretical models are presented of the effects of space, facilities and group size on the behaviour of chickens at high stocking densities, with relevance for all animals. The appropriateness of each model is supported by published data, although such data are scant for some important variables. Freedom of movement is analysed by taking the area […]

Differences in fearfulness indicated by tonic immobility between laying hens in aviaries and in cages

The aim of this study was to investigate whether there were differences in fearfulness between laying hens (Gallus gallus domesticus) housed in aviaries and in cages. The tonic immobility (TI) test was used to assess the fearfulness. Norwegian light hybrid White Leghorn hens were housed in battery cages and in three types of aviaries: the […]

A Comparison of the Behaviour of Solitary and Group-Housed Budgerigars

A comparison was made of the behaviour of budgerigars housed singly in commercially available cages obtained from a pet supplier, and budgerigars housed in a group of six in a small aviary. Budgerigars housed in the aviary consumed significantly more food and were more active, performing more wing stretching and flying. Caged budgerigars performed significantly […]

Gerbils Prefer Partially Darkened Cages

A test system previously described by Blom et al (1993) was used to investigate the preference of the Mongolian gerbil (Meriones unguiculatus) with respect to light intensity in their cage, by comparing a standard transparent rodent cage with three cages darkened by either 25, 50 or 75 per cent. The ten animals included in the […]

The welfare of laying hens in conventional cages and alternative systems: first steps towards a quantitative comparison

Research synthesis, using techniques such as meta-analysis to combine the results of a number of studies, is a particularly useful technique when there are multiple studies with conflicting results, or where there may be conflicting interests, and can serve to extract the maximum information from animal experiments. The effect of conventional cages and alternative housing […]