Methodologies for the Care, Maintenance, and Breeding of Tropical Poison Frogs

The Biodiversity Laboratories at Saint Joseph’s University house more than 100 exotic and endangered animal species-including insects, fish, amphibians, and reptiles. Research in the laboratories is devoted, primarily, to understanding the genetic and ecological bases of animal behavior. In addition, a common theme of the work is the development of techniques for the successful care […]

General Intelligence as a Domain-Specific Adaptation

General intelligence (g) poses a problem for evolutionary psychology’s modular view of the human brain. The author advances a new evolutionary psychological theory of the evolution of general intelligence and argues that general intelligence evolved as a domain-specific adaptation for the originally limited sphere of evolutionary novelty in the ancestral environment. It has accidentally become […]

The link between metabolic rate and body temperature in galliform birds in thermoneutral and heat exposure conditions: The classical and phylogenetically corrected approach

Three galliform species (grey partridges, ring-necked pheasants, and king quail) were involved in body temperature and resting metabolic rate measurements over a broad range of ambient temperatures (20-45 degrees C). At thermoneutrality, inter-species differences in colonic temperature, as well as in metabolic rate, were observed. During heat exposure, all species reacted by elevating their body […]

Captive-born intergeneric hybrid of a Guiana and bottlenose dolphin: Sotalia guianensis×Tursiops truncatus

Abstract Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis) live in sympatry along the Caribbean Coast of Central and South America and social interactions between these species have been described in the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica, including sexual encounters. Here we examine and document the only known hybridization event between a male Guiana […]

Scale variation in a laboratory colony of amelanistic diamondback rattlesnakes (Crotalus atrox)

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.1430130202.abs Inbreeding for 6 generations has produced a strain of amelanistic western diamondback rattlesnakes (Crotalus atrox) with extremely variable scalation. Forty-four siblings varying from virtually no body scalation to normal scalation have been produced in the latest generation. Two of the 3 most extreme “scaleless” snakes were stillborn; the third was maintained for > […]

Relatedness estimation of captive Asian elephants (Elephas maximas) by DNA fingerprinting

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.1430130110.abs DNA from eighteen Asian elephants of known relatedness from three North American zoos was fingerprinted with the hypervariable probe M13. Paternity of a calf of known pedigree was verified. Paternity assignment of a calf having two proposed sires was suggested, but could not be conclusively determined due to a unique fragment in the […]

Generalization of fear in farm mink, Mustela vison, genetically selected for behaviour towards humans

Mink offspring from two genetic lines, selected over 10 generations for confident (C) or fearful (F) reaction towards humans, were exposed to six different tests. The aim was to investigate whether this behavioural selection in mink has affected their reaction in other potentially fear-eliciting situations. A total of 192 naïve mink, males and females, were […]

Breeding for behavioural change in farm animals: practical, economic and ethical considerations

In farm animal breeding, behavioural traits are rarely included in selection programmes despite their potential to improve animal production and welfare. Breeding goals have been broadened beyond production traits in most farm animal species to include health and functional traits, and opportunities exist to increase the inclusion of behaviour in breeding indices. On a technical […]

Assurance schemes as a tool to tackle genetic welfare problems in farm animals: broilers

Farm assurance schemes can set standards to assure compliance with specific requirements relating to animal welfare. As such, standards can be set to address genetic-related welfare problems in farm animals, such as those associated with fast growth rates in meat chickens (broilers) (Gallus gallus domesticus). Based on discussions with broiler breeding companies, broiler producers and […]

Genetic parameters for birth difficulty, lamb vigour and lamb sucking ability in Suffolk sheep

This study investigates the genetic basis of lamb vigour (defined as neonatal lamb activity and sucking ability) and lambing difficulty as potential traits to be included in selection programmes to improve ewe and lamb welfare. Scores for lamb birth difficulty, vigour and sucking ability were collected shortly after birth on 1,520 lambs born in 2006 […]