Human-Animal Relationships: The Use of Species-Typical Food Calls and Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) Names: Welfare-Oriented Tools to Manage Sanctuary Chimpanzees

In captivity, positive human-animal interactions are often part of daily management procedures, which can enhance the welfare of animals and help caregivers with routine husbandry tasks. For example, the provisioning of food (produce or enrichment) can be an effective tool to reward animals for positive behavior. Another option is to use species-typical behavior to request […]

Intranasal Oxytocin Failed to Affect Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) Social Behavior

Oxytocin has been suggested as a treatment to promote positive social interactions in people with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). However, it is difficult to test this effect outside of the laboratory in realistic social situations. One way to resolve this issue is to study behavioral changes in closely related species with complex social relationships, such […]

Does group size matter? Captive chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) behavior as a function of group size and composition

The National Institutes of Health and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums recommend that captive chimpanzees be housed in multi-male, multi-female, age-diverse groups of no less than seven individuals. These recommendations are rooted in the idea that captive chimpanzee groups should be modeled after free-ranging, wild, fission-fusion chimpanzee societies. However, captive chimpanzees do not face […]

Personality in the behaviour of great apes: temporal stability, cross-situational consistency and coherence in response

Using a multidisciplinary approach, the present study complements ethological behaviour measurements with basic theoretical concepts, methods and approaches of the personality psychological trait paradigm. Its adoptability and usefulness for animal studies are tested exemplarily on a sample of 20 zoo-housed great apes (five of each of the following species): bonobos, Pan paniscus; chimpanzees, Pan troglodytes […]

Behavioral management of chimpanzees in biomedical research facilities: The state of the science

The current status of the behavioral management of chimpanzees housed in US research facilities is examined, and recent advances are described. Behavioral management includes the application of environmental enrichment, animal training, and environmental design for improving animal welfare. Authors surveyed the six major chimpanzee holding facilities and found that the vast majority of chimpanzees are […]

Effect of Enclosure Size and Complexity on the Behaviors of Captive Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

Reports describing the implementation of innovative facility designs are important to both the primate caregiving community and policymakers reviewing current U.S. Department of Agriculture regulations. This study documents the changes in behavior of 5 adult chimpanzees that coincided with transfer from the Psychology Building Facility to the large and complex chimpanzee enclosure within the Chimpanzee […]

Male chimpanzees form enduring and equitable social bonds

Controversy exists regarding the nature of primate social relationships. While individual primates are frequently hypothesized to form enduring social bonds with conspecifics, recent studies suggest that relationships are labile, with animals interacting only over short periods to satisfy their immediate needs. Here I use data collected over 10 years on a community of chimpanzees, Pan […]

The prevalence of osteoarthritis in wild versus captive great ape skeletons

This research examined whether the prevalence and skeletal distribution of osteoarthritis (OA) differed between wild and captive great ape skeletons. A secondary, but important, aspect of this research focused on the development of improved aging techniques based on methods commonly used on human osteological samples. Tests were conducted pertaining to the effect that wild versus […]

Chimpanzees are indifferent to the welfare of unrelated group members

Humans are an unusually prosocial species—we vote, give blood, recycle, give tithes and punish violators of social norms. Experimental evidence indicates that people willingly incur costs to help strangers in anonymous one-shot interactions, and that altruistic behaviour is motivated, at least in part, by empathy and concern for the welfare of others (hereafter referred to […]

An experimental, comparative investigation of tool use in chimpanzees and gorillas

Studies of ape tool use have been conducted in captivity since the early 1900s and in the wild since the 1960s. Chimpanzees are the most prolific tool users among the apes, and are known to use more tools than any other nonhuman animal. In contrast, reports of gorilla tool use are rare both in wild […]