Is mixed-species living cognitively enriching? Enclosure use and welfare in two captive groups of tufted capuchins (Sapajus apella) and squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus)

Non-human primates have complex relationships with conspecifics and also other animals with whom they share their habitat in the wild. Some primates, such as capuchin monkeys (Sapajus apella) and squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus), naturally associate, with the potential to act as both proximate and ultimate influences on each other’s behavior. There are a number of […]

A Tail of Two Monkeys: Social Housing for Nonhuman Primates in the Research Laboratory Setting

Despite great adaptability, most nonhuman primates require regular tactile contact with conspecifics for their psychological well being. By illustrating the inherent value of social contact and by providing clues to the best ways of satisfying this need, behavioral studies are useful in designing social enrichment programs. Although group housing is ideal for most gregarious primates, […]

Complex Environmental Enrichment and Spatial Reference Memory in Middle-Aged Mice

The effect of different forms of continuous environmental enrichment on the spatial reference memory of 22 middle-aged female CB57BL/6 mice was examined. All mice were socially housed in either standard (social enrichment only) or complex enriched (social and environmental enrichment) cages for 7 weeks. Enhanced spatial memory as tested on the Barnes Maze was observed […]

Genetic, environmental, and neighbor effects on the severity of stereotypies and feather picking in Orange-winged Amazon parrots (Amazona amazonica): An epidemiological study

Stereotypies and psychogenic feather picking represent two distinct forms of abnormal behavior in parrots, with implications for welfare and owner relinquishment. While both behaviors are common in captive parrots, relatively little is known about the factors that may predispose a parrot to their development. To assess the effects of potential social, environmental, and genetic factors, […]

Early social experience influences the development of stereotypic behaviour in captive-born striped mice Rhabdomys

The early life experience of captive animals, in combination with their genetic inheritance, can predispose or promote the development of stereotypic behaviour in later life. To investigate the early social effects of weaning age and the presence/absence of the father on the development of stereotypic behaviour in adulthood, we retrospectively analysed data from our captive […]

Spatial learning and memory differs between single and cohabitated guinea pigs

In socially-living animals, social enrichment enhances spatial learning and memory while separation from conspecifics can severely impair these abilities. In the present work, guinea pigs were kept in isolation or cohabitated in heterosexual pairs and then subjected to a labyrinth task. Latency-time to bait, error-rate, amount of movement and pre- and post-experimental cortisol (CORT) were […]

A Comparison of the Effects of Simple Versus Complex Environmental Enrichment on the Behaviour of Group-Housed, Subadult Rhesus Macaques

Enrichment of the environments of captive primates is currently of interest as both a basic and an applied research question, particularly when social and inanimate enhancements are used simultaneously. We measured the behavioural effects of two intensities of inanimate enrichment on 12 unimale-multifemale groups and 12 all-male groups from three cohorts of three to four-year-old […]

Living together: behavior and welfare in single and mixed species groups of capuchin (Cebus apella) and squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus)

There are potential advantages of housing primates in mixed species exhibits for both the visiting public and the primates themselves. If the primates naturally associate in the wild, it may be more educational and enjoyable for the public to view. Increases in social complexity and stimulation may be enriching for the primates. However, mixed species […]

You know what? I’m happy. Cognitive bias is not related to personality but is induced by pair-housing in canaries (Serinus canaria)

Recent studies suggest that cognitive bias could constitute a novel and valid measure of animal welfare. Although interest for a link between personality and cognition is growing, no study to date investigated whether a cognitive bias might be related to the personality of the individuals. We trained 43 domestic canaries (Serinus canaria) to discriminate between […]

The impact of social context on behaviour and the recovery from welfare challenges in zebrafish, Danio rerio

Understanding how animals experience stress in a laboratory environment is crucial for improving their welfare. Increasing numbers of fish are being used in scientific studies and further research is required to ensure appropriate conditions are used to promote good conduct and correct housing as well as guaranteeing scientifically valid results. As zebrafish are a gregarious […]