Feeding behavior of calves fed small or large amounts of milk

Little is known about feeding behavior in grouphoused calves fed with an automated feeding system. To examine the influence of milk feeding level on feeding behavior in such a system, we fed calves either 4 L of milk replacer per d (LIM) or allowed ad libitum (AL) intake (n = 25 per treatment). In a […]

Competition for feed affects the feeding behavior of growing dairy heifers

The objective of this study was to determine how competition for feed influences the feeding behavior of young, growing dairy heifers. Thirty-six prepubertal Holstein heifers (231.5 +/- 12.1 d old, weighing 234.7 +/- 24.0 kg), consuming a total mixed ration ad libitum, were assigned to 1 of 2 treatments: noncompetitive (1 heifer/feed bin), or competitive […]

Social influences on vigilance behaviour in giraffes, Giraffa camelopardalis

Vigilance in ungulates is considered to have a predominantly antipredator function, with the frequency and duration of scans per individual decreasing with increasing group size. Social influences on vigilance scans have been overlooked in studies on ungulates, although studies in primates and birds show that conspecific scans are important determinants of vigilance behaviour. We investigated […]

Cage Use and Feeding Height Preferences of Captive Common Marmosets (Callithrix j. jacchus) in Two-Tier Cages

Determining appropriate feeding regimes has important welfare implications for cap-tive primates. This study examined the preference of food bowl heights in 6 pairs of common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) housed in a 2-tier cage system. Given that marmosets are arboreal and spend most of their time in the upper half of their cages, we predicted that […]

Does simple feeding enrichment raise activity levels of captive ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta)?

Feeding enrichment is a commonly proposed way to promote natural behavior, greater activity levels and improved health in captive primates, but in many cases the methods have not been formally tested, especially for particular groups such as lemurs. We investigated whether simple changes in food presentation could increase activity levels in captive ringtailed lemurs (Lemur […]

The development of feeding behaviour in wild western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla)

Before being weaned, young primates must learn which plant species are suitable to eat, and how to process and combine them to meet their nutritional needs. This study provides a detailed investigation of the development of feeding behaviour in a wild population of western lowland gorillas observed in a bai habitat. The behaviour of 56 […]

Life in a variable world: Behaviour, welfare and environmental design

Many or most stimuli in the environment are variable. Sometimes animals will categorize this variation, and we tend to underestimate the complexity of the mechanisms involved. Probably more often, response to variable stimuli is itself variable. Examples are explored in four areas, including the possibility that stimuli may occur in supernormal form: nest-site selection by […]

The Sensory Ecology of Primate Food Perception

Much of the potential of sensory information for understanding primate feeding has been ignored because the subject is usually approached from a nutritional perspective rather than a sensory one. However, nutrients are abstract constructs of modern science, so how can we expect primates to know what they are? To argue that a foraging primate is […]

‘Freedom from hunger’ and preventing obesity: the animal welfare implications of reducing food quantity or quality

In animals, including humans, free access to high-quality (generally energy-dense) food can result in obesity, leading to physiological and health problems. Consequently, various captive animals, including laboratory and companion animals and certain farm animals, are often kept on a restricted diet. Quantitative restriction of food is associated with signs of hunger such as increases in […]

A novel flexible method to split feeding behaviour into bouts

Before meal patterns can be analysed properly, a biologically relevant meal criterion must be determined in order to group short-term feeding behaviour into meals. Existing methodologies are based on modelling of the frequency distributions of intervals between feeding events but these methods cannot be used if the proper distributions cannot be clearly identified. For such […]