Preliminary observations of an unusual mouth interaction between beluga calves (Delphinapterus leucas)

Although many animals, including odontocetes, exhibit interactions involving mouths (e.g., mouthing, nuzzling, biting), a limited number of animals display mouth-to-mouth social interactions that involve mutual coordination and collaboration. The purpose of this paper is to describe briefly a spontaneous and unexpected mouth-to-mouth social interaction between beluga calves in human care during their first year of […]

Function of Notification in Papio hamadryas

Notification is a form of ritualized greeting behavior performed by adult male hamadryas baboons (Papio hamadryas). Originally observed in the wild when harem leaders signaled the direction of travel to their followers on daily foraging marches, its true function is unknown. Notification involves the approach of an adult male baboon to another male, the presentation […]

The Physiological and Behavioral Impact of Sensory Contact Among Unfamiliar Adult Mice in the Laboratory

Housing mice in the laboratory in groups enables social interaction and is the way a laboratory should house mice. However, adult males show reciprocal aggression and are therefore frequently housed individually. Alternatively, a grid divider, which allows sensory contact by sight and smell but prevents fighting and injuries, can separate mice within 1 cage. This […]

Effects of immunocontraception on behavior in fallow deer (Dama dama)

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20165.abs Immunocontraceptives can control growth in wild and captive populations; however, in doing so, they should not disrupt species-typical behavior patterns. The presence of treated females could disrupt social interactions in a population; yet, few studies have examined effects of immunocontraception on behavior. The goal of this project was to determine whether behavior in […]

Effects of reproductive and social context on vocal communication in captive female African elephants (Loxodonta africana)

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20063.abs Female African elephants advertise changes in reproductive condition to males through a variety of modalities, including an increase in low-frequency vocalizations, presumed to travel long distances. Although males respond to these vocalizations, it has been suggested that their proximate function may be to signal to nearby females rather than to distant males. Because […]

Group size and social interactions are associated with calling behavior in Carolina chickadees (Poecile carolinensis)

The complexity of a social group may influence the vocal behavior of group members. Recent evidence in Carolina chickadees, Poecile carolinensis, indicated that one component of social complexity, group size, influenced the complexity of the “chick-a-dee” call, a vocalization functioning in social cohesion. Individuals in larger social groups used calls with greater information than did […]

Adult rats exposed to early-life social isolation exhibit increased anxiety and conditioned fear behavior, and altered hormonal stress responses

Social isolation of rodents during development is thought to be a relevant model of early-life chronic stress. We investigated the effects of early-life social isolation on later adult fear and anxiety behavior, and on corticosterone stress responses, in male rats. On postnatal day 21, male rats were either housed in isolation or in groups of […]

The evolution of reptilian social behavior

Reptiles display a diversity of behavior that is reflective of their evolutionary heritage from fish and amphibians and their ancestral contribution to the diversity found in birds and mammals. Much of the behavior observed in reptiles seems specific to the ecological setting within which they live. As a result, a diversity of behavior is found […]

Human-based social interaction can reward a rat’s behavior

Rats were trained to leverpress in a conventional operant test chamber; however, their behavior was rewarded solely by social interaction with a human being. This training was successful for half the subjects tested; success was confined to animals for which social interaction had occurred prior to training. Similar findings with other species are discussed. Although […]

Forest elephants: fission–fusion and social arenas

Fission–fusion systems provide models for studying grouping decisions and social complexity in a range of taxa, as individuals act to manage risks and enhance reproductive success. African savannah elephants, Loxodonta africana africana, live in a fluid society where individual relationships persist over decades and affect reproductive success. Social structures have yet to be fully characterized […]