Abstract # 1193 Event # 132:

Scheduled for Tuesday, June 27, 2006 02:00 PM-04:00 PM: Session 20 (Princess) Symposium


Symposium: Human/primate interactions and assessment of normal behaviour to refine primate welfare

R. Hubrecht1, S. Wolfensohn2 and P. Honess2
1UFAW, The Old School, Brewhouse Hill, Wheathampstead, Herts AL4 8AN, United Kingdom, 2University of Oxford, Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3PT, UK
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     There is a clear moral and often legal imperative for those who keep primates in captivity to provide high quality housing and husbandry. In order to provide such care, animal husbandry staff need accurate and reliable methods to assess the welfare of their animals. It is often stated that animal welfare can be assessed against a standard of normal behaviour, however behaviour is labile and changes with circumstances. “Natural” will often not equate to normal, or even what is normally seen, which may be abnormal, and may be affected by such variables as housing, upbringing or social status. In addition, staff need to be aware of how their behaviour and husbandry practices can affect the behaviour of the primates in their care. This symposium will explore behaviour as a welfare assessment tool, the ways in which humans can affect primate behaviour, the use of behavioural modification techniques to improve welfare in captivity and the role of the primatologist in developing the care programme for captive primates whether in a zoo or laboratory setting.