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Author (up) Figueroa, J.; Solà-Oriol, D.; Manteca, X.; Pérez, J.F.
Title Social learning of feeding behaviour in pigs: Effects of neophobia and familiarity with the demonstrator conspecific Type Journal Article
Year 2013 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 148 Issue 1 Pages 120-127
Keywords
Abstract Social interactions facilitate animals learning of new features of their environment minimizing a trial and error process. It has been observed in some species that food cues can be acquired by one individual (the observer) from an animal model (demonstrator) due to social learning. Three experiments were performed to evaluate whether weaned piglets may show a preference for a flavoured feed following brief social interactions (30min) with an experienced demonstrator. After the social interaction between demonstrator and observer pigs, a 30-min choice test between the flavoured feed previously eaten by demonstrators (DEM-feed) and other flavoured feed (OTH-feed; Exp. 1 and 2) or a known unflavoured starter diet (Exp. 3) was performed with observer animals. Greater intake of DEM-feed occurred when demonstrators and observers were from the same pen (Exp. 1) or from the same litter (Exp. 2), but not when observers and demonstrators were unfamiliar with each other (Exp. 1). Observers also preferred flavours previously eaten by the demonstrator over their unflavoured diet already known. Social interactions with a conspecific pig that had a recent experience with a flavoured feed enhanced the preference for that feed and could even override neophobia to a new feed. The familiarity of conspecific demonstrators plays a key role in social learning of new feed cues probably due to selective exploration involving closer snout-to-snout contacts with kin conspecifics.
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Publisher Elsevier Place of Publication Editor
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Series Editor Series Title Abbreviated Series Title
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ISSN 0168-1591 ISBN Medium
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Notes doi: 10.1016/j.applanim.2013.06.002 Approved no
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 6038
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Author (up) Flannery, B.
Title Relational discrimination learning in horses Type Journal Article
Year 1997 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 54 Issue 4 Pages 267-280
Keywords Horses; Shaping; Complex discrimination; Concept formation; Generalization ability; Training
Abstract This series of studies investigated horses' ability to learn the concept of sameness under several different conditions. Before experimentation began, three horses were shaped to touch individually presented stimuli with their muzzles, and then to make two responses to two matching cards from an array of three. A modified version of the identity matching-to-sample (IMTS) procedure was used to present stimuli in a variety of configural arrangements on a barn wall (Experiment 1 and Experiment 2), and on a flat panel mounted to a barn door (Experiment 3). The task in each experiment was to select the two stimulus cards that were the same (either circles or Xs) and to avoid the nonmatching stimulus card (either a star or a square). In Experiment 1, the mean accuracy rate for selecting the matching alternatives was 74%. The horses' accuracy levels reached a mean level of 83% during Experiment 2, in which they received additional trials and an intermittent secondary reinforcement schedule. In Experiment 3, when the stimuli were moved further apart from each other within arrangements and were presented on a novel background, the mean accuracy rate was 73%. These data demonstrate that horses can learn complex discrimination problems involving the concept of sameness, and that they are able to generalize this learning to a novel stimulus presentation situation. These results also suggest that a relational discrimination test may be useful for assessing horses' learning ability and the level of training appropriate for individual horses.
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Notes Approved no
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 3557
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Author (up) Flannigan, G.; Stookey, J.M.
Title Day-time time budgets of pregnant mares housed in tie stalls: a comparison of draft versus light mares Type Journal Article
Year 2002 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 78 Issue 2-4 Pages 125-143
Keywords Horse; Time budget; Stereotypies; Housing
Abstract Day-time (08.30-05.30 h) time budgets were generated from 55 light and 55 draft late pregnancy mares housed in tie stalls from ten pregnant mares' urine (PMU) farms using continuous video recording. Equal numbers of light and draft mares were filmed on each farm during the months of February and early March. The actions recorded included eating, drinking, resting (standing and recumbent), standing active, and interactions between horses (aggressive and non-aggressive). In addition, the presence and duration of stereotypic behaviours such as cribbing, head bobbing, weaving, and wood/bar chewing were recorded. Light mares spent significantly more time feeding and significantly less time standing active and standing resting (P<0.05, Rank Sum Two Sample Test). However, the time budget of both groups fell within the range of previously published activity budgets of feral horses. Therefore, the differences noted may not be clinically relevant. Three light and two draft mares performed repetitive behaviours at a level that is considered stereotypic (at >5% of their daily time budget). There was no significant difference in the number of horses performing stereotypies between light and draft mares. When the time budgets of both light and draft mares who performed stereotypies were pooled, the activities did not differ significantly from their counterparts who did not perform stereotypies. Because of the overall low prevalence of stereotypies and the fact that time budgets were similar to free-range horses, we believe that the management practice of keeping large numbers of pregnant mares in tie stalls is rational and that the welfare of mares is sound. Furthermore, we did not see a behavioural justification for a bias in the weight class of horses used within this management system.
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Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 3637
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Author (up) Fleurance, G.; Duncan, P.; Fritz, H.; Cabaret, J.; Cortet, J.; Gordon, I.J.
Title Selection of feeding sites by horses at pasture: Testing the anti-parasite theory Type Journal Article
Year 2007 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 108 Issue 3-4 Pages 228-301
Keywords Foraging strategies; Horses; Parasite risk; Patch choice
Abstract Management of grazed grasslands for production and/or conservation objectives requires a thorough understanding of the choices of feeding sites by herbivores, and of the biological processes involved. Most models of the feeding strategies of herbivores are based on the principle that optimising the intake of energy (or some nutrient) is the primary goal of foragers but other selective forces, such as parasitism, could be important. Gastrointestinal parasites (including cyathostome nematodes) have powerful effects on the fitness of herbivores and may act as a major selection pressure favouring host behaviour that reduces the risk of encountering parasites. Among large herbivores, horses have perhaps the most marked tendency to select particular feeding sites within grasslands. We test here: (1) whether horses select feeding patches with relatively low parasite densities and (2) if their choice is affected by their parasite load. We used 10 two-year old saddle-horses and three periods. In the first period, the horses were under natural parasitism which varied strongly among individuals; in the second period they were all dewormed, and in the third, a sub-set of the horses was experimentally infected with cyathostome larvae. Ninety-eight percent of the infective larvae in the pasture were found <1 m from faeces. The main determinant of the choice of feeding patch by horses was the availability of patches of different parasite risk and grass height. Controlling for availability, the horses used tall grasses (>16 cm) less than expected, whether the grass was contaminated or not, and they selected for short patches >1 m from faeces, where the risk of encountering parasites was low. These results suggest that selection of feeding sites by horses is driven by an interaction between their nutritional and anti-parasite strategies: the horses avoid the patches of tall grass which are generally of low quality and areas contaminated by parasite larvae which leads them to prefer the patches of short grass far from faeces. The parasite status of the horses at the time of the experiment had no effect on their feeding choices. However, before concluding that the challenge by cyathostomes has no effect on the selection of feeding sites in horses, it will be necessary to test whether the history of parasitism of the individuals, rather than the current status, is important.
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Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 4228
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Author (up) Fureix, C.; Bourjade, M.; Henry, S.; Sankey, C.; Hausberger, M.
Title Exploring aggression regulation in managed groups of horses Equus caballus Type Journal Article
Year 2012 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 138 Issue 3–4 Pages 216-228
Keywords Horses; Social behaviour; Aggression regulation; Coping in group; Management; Social development
Abstract Horses are highly social animals that have evolved to live in social groups. However, in modern husbandry systems, single housing prevails where horses experience social isolation, a challenge-to-welfare factor. One major reason for this single housing is the owners’ concerns that horses may injure each other during aggressive encounters. However, in natural conditions, serious injuries due to aggressive encounters are rare. What could therefore explain the claimed risks of group living for domestic horses? Basing our questioning on the current knowledge of the social life of horses in natural conditions, we review different practices that may lead to higher levels of aggression in horses and propose practical solutions. Observations of natural and feral horses mostly indicate a predominance of low frequencies and mild forms of aggression, based on subtle communication signals and ritualized displays and made possible by group stability (i.e. stable composition), dominance hierarchy and learning of appropriate social skills by young horses. Obviously, adults play a major role here in canalizing undesirable behaviours, and social experience during development, associated with a diversity of social partners, seems to be a prerequisite for the young horse to become socially skilled. Given the natural propensity of horses to have a regulation of aggression in groups, the tendency to display more aggression in groups of domestic horses under some management practices seems clearly related to the conditions offered. We therefore review the managing practices that could trigger aggressiveness in horses. Non social practices (space, resource availability) and social practices (group size, stability of membership, composition and opportunities for social experiences during development) in groups of domestic horses are discussed here. Finally, we propose simple practical solutions leading to more peaceful interactions in groups of domestic horses, based on the knowledge of horses’ natural social life which therefore should be enhanced (e.g. ensuring roughage availability, favouring group stability, introducing socially experienced adults in groups of young horses, etc.). The state of the art indicates that many questions still need to be answered. Given the importance of the associated welfare issues and the consequences on the use of horses, further research is required, which could benefit horses… and humans.
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ISSN 0168-1591 ISBN Medium
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Notes Approved no
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 5648
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Author (up) Gabor, V.; Gerken, M.
Title Horses use procedural learning rather than conceptual learning to solve matching to sample Type Journal Article
Year 2010 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 126 Issue 3-4 Pages 119-124
Keywords Horses; Concept learning; Visual discrimination; Cognition; Experimental design; Procedural learning
Abstract Research into higher cognitive abilities of the horse may be limited by developing the adequate experimental design. In this study four pony mares between 8 and 19 years old were included. Three of them reached the criterion to be tested in a new design of matching to sample using a black circle and a cross as visual cues attached to an apparatus. The attention was directed to the question of whether the animals are able to concept formation in a given time period or if their decisions depend on other cues or strategies. After familiarization to the testing area and the test procedure, the animals were given 27 sessions of 20 trials each during 14 weeks. While there was no preference for one of the stimuli used, horses showed a significant left sidedness. None of the mares reached the learning criterion of 80% correct answers in one session. However, the ponies showed procedural learning based on correction runs that were given between incorrect decisions, by then selecting the correct stimulus on the other side of the apparatus. This learning type arose in three individuals in session four, six and eleven, respectively. It is concluded that discrimination tasks may be biased by the involvement of unexpected learning strategies, which complicates the interpretation of such tests and may even mask possible conceptualization capabilities.
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Publisher Place of Publication Editor
Language Summary Language Original Title
Series Editor Series Title Abbreviated Series Title
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ISSN 0168-1591 ISBN Medium
Area Expedition Conference
Notes Approved no
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 5157
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Author (up) Gifford, A.K.; Cloutier, S.; Newberry, R.C.
Title Objects as enrichment: Effects of object exposure time and delay interval on object recognition memory of the domestic pig Type Journal Article
Year 2007 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 107 Issue 3-4 Pages 206-217
Keywords Pig; Cognition; Exploratory behaviour; Animal welfare; Environmental enrichment
Abstract A modified spontaneous object recognition test was used to examine object recognition memory in the domestic pig. This test uses preference for a novel object over a previously encountered sample object as indicating recognition of the sample object, and no preference as indicating no recognition. Two factors hypothesized to affect object recognition are duration of exposure to the sample stimulus and delay interval before re-exposure. Both of these factors could be manipulated in a rotational object enrichment program for pigs. Reducing exposure time and increasing the delay interval before re-exposure should decrease object recognition and prolong novelty-induced object exploration. We exposed 5-week-old pigs to different sample objects in their home pens for 10 min and 2 days, respectively. We tested for object recognition memory at various delay intervals after initial exposure by placing littermate pairs in a test pen for 10 min and recording snout contact with a sample object and a completely novel object. At a 1-h delay, half the pairs were tested with the 2-day sample object; the other half received the 10-min sample object. At a 3-h delay, pairs were tested with the opposite sample object. Pairs were also tested with the 2-day sample at a 5-day delay and the 10-min sample at a 6-day delay. We predicted that pigs would show a preference for the novel versus the 2-day sample object at all three delays, but would only prefer the novel object over the 10-min sample object at the 1-h and 3-h delays. Pigs did not show novelty preference in the presence of the 10-min sample object at any delay. Novelty preference in the presence of the 2-day sample object occurred at the 3-h (P < 0.05) and 5-day delays (P < 0.001), but not the 1-h delay. The lack of novelty preference when pigs were tested with the 10-min sample object may have been due to failure to habituate to the sample object. Testing in a different location from the initial sample object exposure and retroactive interference from exposure to the 10-min sample object may have contributed to a temporary lack of novelty preference when pigs were tested with the 2-day sample object at the 1-h delay. The finding that pigs retained a memory for the 2-day sample object for at least 5 days suggests that restricting object exposure to less than 2 days may help to preserve the exploratory value of objects rotated among pens.
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Notes Approved no
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 2892
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Author (up) Giles, S.L.; Nicol, C.J.; Harris, P.A.; Rands, S.A.
Title Dominance rank is associated with body condition in outdoor-living domestic horses (Equus caballus) Type Journal Article
Year 2015 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal
Volume Issue Pages
Keywords Equine; fatness; obesity; social behaviour; displacement
Abstract Abstract The aim of our study was to explore the association between dominance rank and body condition in outdoor group-living domestic horses, Equus caballus. Social interactions were recorded using a video camera during a feeding test, applied to 203 horses in 42 herds. Dominance rank was assigned to 194 individuals. The outcome variable body condition score (BCS) was recorded using a 9-point scale. The variables age and height were recorded and considered as potential confounders or effect modifiers. Results were analysed using multivariable linear and logistic regression techniques, controlling for herd group as a random effect. More dominant (p = 0.001) individuals generally had a higher body condition score (p = 0.001) and this association was entirely independent of age and height. In addition, a greater proportion of dominant individuals fell into the obese category (BCS >= 7/9, p = 0.005). There were more displacement encounters and a greater level of interactivity in herds that had less variation in age and height, lending strength to the hypothesis that phenotypic variation may aid cohesion in group-living species. In addition there was a strong quadratic relationship between age and dominance rank (p < 0.001), where middle-aged individuals were most likely to be dominant. These results are the first to link behavioural predictors to body condition and obesity status in horses and should prompt the future consideration of behavioural and social factors when evaluating clinical disease risk in group-living animals.
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ISSN 0168-1591 ISBN Medium
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Notes Approved no
Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Giles2015 Serial 5864
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Author (up) Goddard, P.J.; Summers, R.W.; Macdonald, A.J.; Murray, C.; Fawcett, A.R.
Title Behavioural responses of red deer to fences of five different designs Type Journal Article
Year 2001 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 73 Issue 4 Pages 289-298
Keywords Red deer; Fence efficiency; Grazing behaviour
Abstract Capercaillie, a large species of grouse, are sometimes killed when they fly into high-tensile deer fences. A fence design which is lower or has a less rigid top section than conventional designs would reduce bird deaths, but such fences would still have to be deer-proof. The short-term behavioural responses of farmed red deer (Cervus elaphus) to fences of five designs, including four that were designed to be less damaging to capercaillie, were measured. Five deer were located on one side of a fence with a larger group (20 animals), from which they had been recently separated, on the other. The efficacy of fences in preventing deer from the small group from rejoining the larger group was also recorded. In addition to a conventional deer fence (C) the four new designs were, an inverted “L” shape (L), a fence with offset electric wire (E), a double fence (D) and a fence with four webbing tapes above (W). Four replicate groups of deer were each tested for 3 days with each fence design. Deer paced the test fence line relatively frequently (a proportion of 0.09 scan observations overall) but significantly less when deer were separated by fences E or C compared to L, W or D (overall difference between fence types, P<0.001). Deer separated by fence E spent significantly more time pacing perimeter fences than deer separated by fences of other types (overall difference between fence types, P<0.01) but deer separated by fence C maintained a low level of fence pacing overall. Analysis of behaviour patterns across the first day and the 3 days of exposure suggested that the novelty of the test fences, rather than the designs per se, influenced the behaviour of the deer. Over the course of the study, no deer crossed either C or L. Three deer crossed E and two deer crossed both W and D. On this basis, field testing, particularly of fence L, would be a useful next step.
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Notes Approved no
Call Number Serial 2101
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Author (up) Goodwin, D.; Davidson, H.P.B.; Harris, P.
Title A note on behaviour of stabled horses with foraging devices in mangers and buckets Type Journal Article
Year 2007 Publication Applied Animal Behaviour Science Abbreviated Journal Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci.
Volume 105 Issue 1-3 Pages 238-243
Keywords Stabled horse; Behaviour; Foraging device; Management; Edinburgh foodball
Abstract Processed feed for stabled horses is usually presented in buckets or mangers, and is easily and rapidly consumed. Foraging devices based on the Edinburgh foodball can be used to provide part of the ration. Current designs are all placed on the floor, raising concerns regarding ingestion of foreign materials along with the dispensed food. Alternative devices were evaluated, when presented within suitable, clean containers to prolong food-handling times but avoid such issues. In four Latin square designed replicated trials we investigated behaviour of 12 stabled horses with three foraging devices. These were separately presented for 5 min, varied in sensory complexity (round, square, polyhedral) and contained 500 g high fibre pellets. In Trials 1 and 2 six geldings were presented with devices in buckets then mangers. All individuals foraged successfully from at least one device and behaviour was compared. However, all individuals exhibited some frustration while using the devices (either pawing or biting them). Horses frequently removed the devices from the buckets in Trial 1 terminating these sessions. In Trial 2 mean device foraging duration was ranked polyhedral > round > square. Mean pawing rate in Trial 2 was calculated for horses (frequency of pawing per individual/summed duration manipulation and foraging) and was highest with square (0.11, npawers = 6). In Trial 3 six stabled mares were presented with the same foraging devices in mangers. Mean foraging duration with devices again ranked polyhedral > round > square. Mean pawing rate was highest with round device (0.08, npawers = 4). Trial 4 investigated behaviour of six horses when devices initially containing five high fibre pellets became empty. Mean foraging duration with devices ranked round > polyhedral > square. Mean pawing rate was highest with square device (0.11, npawers = 4). All horses foraged successfully from at least one foraging device in buckets and mangers. Devices met initial objectives but the unpredictability of reward suggests a source of frustration and warrants further investigation.
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Notes Approved no
Call Number Admin @ knut @ Serial 4345
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