Variation in nature: its implications for zoo elephant management

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20087.abs Despite many advances in animal care and welfare over the past few decades, zoos have been criticized recently for the quality of their elephant management programs. More specifically, critics have argued that elephants live miserable lives in captivity and thus should not be kept in zoos. Poor health and reproductive success, they say, […]

How practice makes perfect: the role of persistence, flexibility and learning in problem-solving efficiency

To fully understand how problem-solving ability provides adaptive advantages for animals, we should understand the mechanisms that support this ability. Recent studies have highlighted several behavioural traits including persistence, behavioural variety and behavioural/cognitive flexibility that contribute to problem-solving success. However, any increment in these traits will increase time and energy costs in natural conditions, so […]